Quote Originally Posted by Tammuz View Post
You have made good points.

Though I am familiar with the rough outline of the Bible (the creation of the world, the flood, Joseph and his brothers moving to Egypt, Exodus, the conquest of Canaan, the exile in Babylonia, the return to Israel, Jesus and his life, the missionary activities of Paul), I think I should try to read the thing from cover to cover. But I have to admit that it will occupy a place not very high on my priority list at this point.
The epistles of Paul are probably more important in some ways, as these letters contain ideas that are the basis of Christianity. They are somewhat convoluted and hard to read, but ideas such as predestination, the concept of the elect, and grace, are and have been important foundations of Christian theology. There is for example, no original sin to be found in Genesis. That idea is from Paul and forms a basic dogma in most of the Christian sects of today. Paul does from time to time directly draw from the OT for his ideas, but not from tales of the OT, but from the various prophets. From the OT, he draws on the tale of Jacob and Esau.

Romans 9:13
13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

Romans 9, God the great potter who creates some persons as vessels of honor, and some as vessels of dishonor.

Odd stuff that paints God as not the loving, merciful God most people want to believe in. Many Christians know little about any of this as it is hard to read, Paul was not the clearest of writers, and not a very systematic theologian.