The first five books of the Old Testament comprise The Law, also known as: The Torah, The
Pentateuch (five scrolls), or The Five Books of Moses.
These books written by Moses form the foundation of the Old Testament, delineating Israel as
Genesis shows the relationship of Israel to God. Beginning with the creation, showing that
Israel, as well as all men, owe their existence to the Creator of all, Genesis chronicles the
history of God's relation with the patriarchs which led to the formation of the nation of Israel,
based upon the promises of God to Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob (who became Israel), and
Exodus shows the birth of Israel as a nation from the bondage of Egypt. Beginning with the
reason for the bondage which the children of Israel found themselves in, Exodus chronicles
the deliverance of Israel through the prophet Moses and the giving of the covenant at Mt. Sinai.
Leviticus shows the relation of Israel to God in the laws and holy days God required of the
nation of Israel, which set them apart from all other people.
Numbers shows the care of God for the nation of Israel while they were in the wilderness. In
fact, the Hebrew title for the book is BE-MIDHAR, "in the wilderness." Numbers records the
wilderness wanderings of the nation, from the census taken at Mt. Sinai, to their refusal to
conquer the land when they first came to Canaan, through the wanderings which saw all but
two of the 603,550 men of war die in the wilderness, to the second census taken before they
enter the Promised Land under the leadership of Joshua.
Deuteronomy reminds Israel again of their relationship and reliance upon God before they
enter Canaan. Deuteronomy records three speeches given by Moses to prepare the hearts
and minds of Israel to form the nation upon the land which had been promised to Abraham;
then, it records the death of the first and greatest of the prophets, the giver of the Law, Moses.