Old testament

Old Testament Survey Timeline

  • Period: 3300 BCE to 2000 BCE

    Early Bronze Age

    "This period witnessed the invention of writing and the beginnings of human history" (Arnold & Beyer, 23).
  • Period: 2166 BCE to 1991 BCE

    Abraham's Life

    According to Genesis 25:7, Abraham lived to be a "hundred threescore and fifteen years". This means Abraham was approximately 175 years old when he passed away.
  • Period: 2000 BCE to 1550 BCE

    Middle Bronze Age

    "This period of ancient Near Eastern history is marked by the movement of ethnic groups and new empires replacing the older powers of the Early Bronze Age" (Arnold & Beyer, 23).
  • Period: 2000 BCE to 1700 BCE

    Egyptian Middle Kingdom

    "In Egypt, after a period of darkness and confusion called the First Intermediate Period, the country once again flourished during the Middle Kingdom period" (Arnold & Beyer, 23). This time period was a peaceful and stable for Egypt.
  • Period: 1550 BCE to 1200 BCE

    Late Bronze Age

    "The Late Bronze Age was one of international trade and balance of world powers, with Syria-Palestine caught in the middle" (Arnold & Beyer, 25).
  • Period: 1376 BCE to 1050 BCE

    The Book of Judges

    The events and people in this book mostly likely occur within the timeframe of 1376 BC - 1050 BC. The period of the Judges ended when Saul began his reign.
  • Period: 1200 BCE to 930 BCE

    Iron Age I

    This period "began with the invasion of the sea peoples and the shifting of political power throughout the ancient Near East" (Arnold & Beyer, 28).
  • 1100 BCE


    The events of Ruth occurred during the end of the rules of the judges which would be around 1100 BC. Ruth married Boaz and had a child. The events of Ruth's life lead to the birth of David, who would eventually become a king.
  • Period: 1050 BCE to 1010 BCE

    Saul's Reign

    Samuel appointed Saul as king of Israel in 1050 BC. God rejected King Saul for his disobedience as seen in I Samuel 15:23. Then, God called Samuel to anoint the next king. Samuel appointed David.
  • Period: 1010 BCE to 970 BCE

    David's Reign

    David spent years running from Saul, but David was eventually crowned king. David was not perfect but he was the king that God chose.
  • Period: 970 BCE to 930 BCE

    Solomon's Reign

    Solomon established himself on the throne in 970 BC after his father's death. Israel became a major power during Solomon's reign; however, "Israel's brief period of strength and prestige was ruined by Solomon's religious apostasy" (Arnold & Beyer, 201). Solomon never fully abandoned God, but he was not fully devoted either. It can be seen in I Kings 11, that Solomon strayed from God and started to add religious practices of his many wives. After Solomon died, the kingdom divided.
  • 930 BCE

    Divided Kingdom

    Divided Kingdom
    After Solomon passed away, the nation divided into the Northern Kingdom of Israel and the Southern Kingdom of Judah.
  • Period: 930 BCE to 539 BCE

    Iron Age II

    This period "covers Israel's divided kingdoms: northern Israel and southern Judah" (Arnold & Beyer, 30).
  • Period: 900 BCE to 600 BCE

    Assyrian Empire

    According to National Geographic, the Assyrian Empire began around 900 B.C. and ended around 600 B.C. https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/assyrian-empire/
  • Period: 792 BCE to 740 BCE

    Reign of King Uzziah

    Uzziah was also known as Azariah in the bible. According to 2 Kings 15:2, Uzziah was "sixteen years old when he began to reign, and he reigned two and fifty years in Jerusalem."
  • Period: 760 BCE to 750 BCE

    Amos' Prophetic Ministry

    During this time period, Amos served as a prophet to the northern kingdom of Israel. Amos called "Israel to repent of its sin and establish justice as the law of the land" (Arnold & Beyer, 436).
  • Period: 740 BCE to 681 BCE

    Isaiah's Prophetic Ministry

    "Isaiah is one of the most famous Old Testament prophets" (Arnold & Beyer, 334). Isaiah mainly prophesied mainly to Judah; however, he also had words for other nations (Arnold & Beyer, 335).
  • 722 BCE

    Fall of Israel

    "Shalmaneser V laid siege to Israel's capital, Samaria, in 725 B.C." (Arnold & Beyer, 30). In 722 BC, the Northern Kingdom of Israel finally fell to Assyria and King Shalmaneser V.
  • Period: 715 BCE to 686 BCE

    Hezekiah's Reign

    According to II Kings 18:2, Hezekiah was 25 years old. According to Arnold & Beyer, he was anti-Assyrian (30).
  • Period: 663 BCE to 612 BCE

    Nahum's Prophetic Ministry

    According to Arnold & Beyer, "Nahum mentioned the fall of Thebes, an event that occurred in 663 B.C. The prophet also speaks of Nineveh's fall, which took place in 612 B.C." (447). Due to this, we can conclude the dates of Nahum's ministry. Nahum prophesized that Assyria's capital, Nineveh, would fall (Arnold & Beyer, 447).
  • Period: 640 BCE to 609 BCE

    Reign of King Josiah

    According to Arnold & Beyer, "Josiah was the last godly king before the Babylonian exile" (222).
  • Period: 627 BCE to 586 BCE

    Jeremiah's Prophetic Ministry

    During this time, Jeremiah served as a prophet until the fall of Judah in 586 BC. "Jeremiah experienced incredible opposition. He suffered beatings and public humiliation" (Arnold & Beyer, 367). Jeremiah prophesied Judah's destruction and warned the people of Judah to repent, but they did not listen.
  • Period: 626 BCE to 539 BCE

    Babylonian Empire (Neo-Babylonian Empire)

    According to both the Chronological Life Application Study Bible and History.com, The Babylonian Empire began around 626 BC with Nabopolassar and ended around 539 BC when Cyrus conquered Babylon. https://www.history.com/topics/ancient-middle-east/babylonia
  • Period: 605 BCE to 562 BCE

    Nebuchadnezzar's Reign

    According to Arnold & Beyer, Nebuchadnezzar ruled for 43 years. During his rule, "Babylonia reached the apex of its wealth and political power in what is called the Neo-Babylonian period" (Arnold & Beyer, 31)
  • Period: 605 BCE to 536 BCE

    Daniel's Prophetic Ministry

    Daniel served as a prophet to the exiles in Babylon. Daniel was also drafted to counsel King Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel warned Nebuchadnezzar that his pride was going to be his downfall (Arnold & Beyer, 418).
  • 597 BCE

    Babylonian Exile

    Babylonian Exile
    In 597 BC, Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonians attacked Judah. During this attack, the Babylonians captured about 10,000 people, including Ezekiel.
  • Period: 593 BCE to 571 BCE

    Ezekiel's Prophetic Ministry

    Ezekiel prophesized to those already in exile in Babylon and warned them of God's impending judgement and urged them to repent (Arnold & Beyer, 392).
  • 586 BCE

    Fall of Judah

    King Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonian military destroyed Judah and Jerusalem. According to Arnold & Beyer, Jerusalem fell in 587 B.C (30).
  • Period: 549 BCE to 331 BCE

    Persian Empire

    According to the Chronological Life Application Study Bible, the Persian empire began in 549 BC and lasted until 331 BC. King Cyrus marks the beginning of the Persian Empire (Arnold & Beyer, 33). Cyrus began his rule in 559 BC. In 539 BC, Cyrus conquered Babylon which lead to his decree in 538 BC.
  • Period: 539 BCE to 332 BCE

    Iron Age III

    According to Arnold & Beyer, this period is also known as the Persian Age (33).
  • 538 BCE

    Edict of Cyrus

    Edict of Cyrus
    In 538 BC, Cyrus, the king of Persia, made a proclamation. According to Ezra 1: 1-11, Cyrus ended the Babylonian exile and allowed people to return to their homeland in order to rebuild.
  • 520 BCE

    Haggai's Prophetic Ministry

    Haggai's Prophetic Ministry
    In 520 BC, Haggai served as a prophet to Judah after people returned from being exiled. According to Arnold & Beyer, "it was only after the ministries of the prophets Haggai and Zechariah that the second temple was finally finished in 516 B.C." (33).
  • 458 BCE

    Ezra Travels to Jerusalem

    Ezra Travels to Jerusalem
    In 458 BC, Ezra returned to Jerusalem with a group of exiles. According to Arnold & Beyer, Ezra's expedition was the second from Babylonia (33).
  • 445 BCE

    Nehemiah Returns to Jerusalem

    Nehemiah Returns to Jerusalem
    According to Nehemiah 2:1-10, King Artaxerxes allowed Nehemiah to return to Jerusalem in order to help build the city. In the text, this event happened in the "twentieth year of Artaxerxes the king". According to Arnold & Beyer, Nehemiah led the third group (33). Nehemiah knew he had the primary task to help rebuild Jerusalem's city walls and defenses (33)