It’s been nearly a year since I posted the outline of the Old Testament that had come about through my work with Daniel Bartholomew on our open source ScriptureLog project. We had previously released an outline of the textual structure of the Book of Mormon, and I had intended to move on immediately to making the New Testament available for ScriptureLog and to produce an accompanying outline for it.
However, other projects and responsibilities soon pushed the New Testament work to the back-burner.
With the adult Sunday school curriculum in the LDS church shifting to study the New Testament during 2011, I made an extra effort to get something finished by the end of 2010.
While the update to add the New Testament to the Scripturelog plugin for WordPress might not be available for another week or two, the outline of the New Testament is available for download immediately in PDF format so it can be used and printed by anyone:
As with the other outlines, I spent a great deal of time reading commentaries and articles about the New Testament, about the individual books in it, and prayerfully going through the text itself chapter by chapter, and page by page, to try to identify ways to organize the parts.
Rather than attempt a comprehensive outline, I aimed to produce an outline that would help illuminate some of the traditional divisions and relationships in the text, as well as changes in theme, narrative, or focus, by placing structural sign posts to help readers orient themselves as they study.
As with my other efforts to outline scriptures, I came away from this project with a renewed love, and improved understanding of the New Testament, which made the whole endeavor well worth it.
I hope it can also be helpful to others as they prepare for the upcoming 2011 curriculum.
There also have been some minor revisions to my outlines for the Old Testament and The Book of Mormon, including the addition of some PDF bookmarks to make navigating the PDF documents much easier. You can find links to download the newest revisions of any of the outlines on the ScriptureLog Website.
Happy New Year!