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How Many Books In The Old And New Testament

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There are 39 books in the Old Testament, and 27 in the New Testament. They are divided into three sections: Law, History, and Prophets; Poetry and Wisdom; Gospels.

There are 39 Old Testament books, divided into THREE parts of 12 books each. The same division is found in the New Testament, where it is called “The Four Gospels.”

Books of the Bible in Canonical Order

The ‍Old Testament, consisting of ‍the “List of Books ​in the Bible;⁢ Numbered from Genesis to Malachi,” ​is⁤ a ⁢collection of sacred texts that hold great significance for religious followers. These books, believed to be divinely inspired, provide historical accounts, moral teachings, and guidance for⁢ individuals seeking spiritual enlightenment. Let’s explore this magnificent collection:

List of old Testament Books

1 Samuel
2 Samuel
1 Kings
2 Kings
1 Chronicles
2 Chronicles
1 Maccabees
2 Maccabees
Song of Songs

The ‍Old Testament, consisting of ‍the “List of Books ​in the Bible;⁢ Numbered from Genesis to Malachi,” ​is⁤ a ⁢collection of sacred texts that hold great significance for religious followers. These books, believed to be divinely inspired, provide historical accounts, moral teachings, and guidance for⁢ individuals seeking spiritual enlightenment. Let’s explore this magnificent collection:

New Testament

1 Corinthians
2 Corinthians
1 Thessalonians
2 Thessalonians
1 Timothy
2 Timothy
1 Peter
2 Peter
1 John
2 John
3 John

How ⁢Many​ Books In The Old And New Testament

The ​Bible is⁣ composed of two main ‌sections – the Old Testament and the New Testament.⁤ Each section contains a⁤ specific number of books that contribute to the overall narrative and teachings ​of Christianity. Let’s explore ​the‌ how many ‌books ⁤are in the Old ‍and New Testament in detail:

Old Testament

  • Genesis: The book⁤ of Genesis is the first book‍ of the Old Testament and serves as an important foundation for understanding the creation⁣ of the world and ​the origins ​of​ humanity. It contains stories of Adam and Eve, ‌Noah’s Ark, ​and the famous story of Joseph ⁢and his coat of many colors.
  • Exodus: Exodus recounts ‍the ⁤story of Moses leading the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt. It includes the Ten ⁤Commandments and the construction of the Tabernacle.
  • Leviticus: This book focuses on the laws and regulations given to the Israelites by God through Moses, covering topics such as sacrifices, cleanliness, and holiness.
  • Numbers: Numbers‌ describes ⁤the Israelites’ journey through the wilderness and their struggles and disobedience along the way. ⁢It also includes the ‍story of Balaam’s talking donkey.
  • Deuteronomy: Deuteronomy means ⁢”second law”​ and consists of Moses’ farewell speeches to the Israelites before they enter ⁤the Promised‌ Land. It reiterates the importance of following God’s commandments.
  • Joshua: The book of Joshua details how the Israelites, under Joshua’s leadership, conquered⁢ the⁤ land of Canaan. It provides accounts of battles, victories, and the division of the land among the tribes of⁤ Israel.
  • Judges: Judges ‍follows the Israelites after Joshua’s death, highlighting a time of moral and ‍spiritual decline as different judges arise to lead God’s people during times of crisis.
  • Ruth: The book of Ruth tells a beautiful story of loyalty and redemption. It centers around a Moabite woman named Ruth who remains loyal to ‍her ⁣mother-in-law, Naomi, ‌and ultimately finds love and ⁣restoration.
  • 1 Samuel: 1 Samuel introduces ⁣the prophet Samuel ‌and the rise of the monarchy in Israel. It ‍includes the stories of the prophet Eli, Saul, and David’s early life.
  • 2⁣ Samuel: 2 Samuel continues the narrative of Israel’s kings, focusing specifically⁤ on David⁢ and his reign. It ⁢includes accounts of his ⁢victories, his infamous affair with Bathsheba, and the consequences⁣ of his ​actions.
  • 1 Kings:‌ 1 Kings⁢ documents⁤ the reign of Solomon, David’s son. It also covers⁣ the division⁢ of Israel‍ into two ⁢kingdoms ‍and the ensuing‌ kings, both good and evil.
  • 2 Kings: 2 ​Kings continues the ‌story of Israel’s kings, highlighting the downfall of both Israel and Judah. It includes accounts of‍ prophets such as Elijah and Elisha.
  • 1 ‌Chronicles: 1 Chronicles presents a genealogy from Adam to David and provides a detailed ‍account of David’s ​reign as king. It also includes various prayers,⁣ songs, and historical records.
  • 2 Chronicles: 2 Chronicles focuses on the history of the kings of Judah after the division ​of Israel. It emphasizes the⁤ importance of ⁤following God’s laws and the consequences of disobedience.
  • Ezra: Ezra recounts the return of the Jewish exiles from Babylon and the rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem. It emphasizes the restoration of religious practices ⁣and obedience to God’s law.
  • Nehemiah: Nehemiah follows the story of Nehemiah, who led the rebuilding of the city walls of Jerusalem. It addresses opposition, repentance, and the importance of communal worship.
  • Esther: ⁢Esther tells the story of a Jewish queen who risks her life to save her people from destruction. It highlights God’s providential care and the importance of standing up⁣ for‌ what is‌ right.
  • Job: The book of Job addresses the problem of suffering and explores themes of faith, patience,​ and⁤ God’s sovereignty. It chronicles‍ Job’s trials and ultimately​ his ⁢restoration.
  • Psalms: Psalms is a collection of 150 poetic songs and prayers that express a wide range‌ of⁢ emotions and experiences.​ It ​covers‍ themes such ⁣as praise, lament, thanksgiving, and repentance.

These are just⁢ a‍ few of the books in the Old⁤ Testament. The remaining books include


The book of⁢ Proverbs is a treasure trove of timeless wisdom ‌and practical advice.⁤ It contains 31 ‍chapters, each⁤ offering insightful teachings on ⁣various ​aspects of​ life, such as wisdom, discipline, relationships, and the fear of God. One ​of the most well-known verses from Proverbs is Proverbs 3:5-6⁢ which states, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”


Ecclesiastes ‍reflects ⁣upon the ⁣meaning of life and the pursuit of happiness. It ‌contains poetic ⁢musings by the Preacher⁣ who seeks⁤ to find⁤ purpose in the world. This book encourages readers to recognize the vanity of worldly pursuits and to ⁣find fulfillment ‌in fearing God ‍and keeping His commandments. Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 beautifully summarizes the message, “Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion ‌of the matter: Fear ‌God and‍ keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind.”

Song of Solomon

The Song of Solomon, ⁣also known as ‍the Song‌ of Songs, celebrates the beauty of love. It consists of poetic and romantic verses expressing the‍ joys and desires ‍experienced in a relationship. This book serves as a reminder of the importance of love, both ⁣within the context ⁣of‍ human relationships and as an allegory for the love between God and ​His people. ‌Song of Solomon 2:16 beautifully portrays this spiritual connection, “My beloved is mine and I am his; he⁢ browses among the lilies.”


The book⁤ of‍ Isaiah‌ contains prophecies and messages ⁢of hope during ⁢tumultuous times. It addresses the nation of Israel,⁤ offering both warnings of impending‌ judgment and comforting promises‍ of restoration. ⁤Isaiah 41:10 provides encouragement during challenging‌ times, saying, “So‌ do‍ not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am⁣ your God. I ​will strengthen you and help you; ⁢I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”


Jeremiah is known ⁣as the ⁤weeping prophet ‌due to the ⁣heavy burden he carried for the Israelites. This book chronicles Jeremiah’s prophecies, laments, and messages of repentance. It highlights the consequences⁤ of the nation’s‌ disobedience and the hope of future⁣ restoration. Jeremiah 29:11‍ assures ⁣God’s plans for His people, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to ‌prosper you and not to ‌harm you, plans⁤ to give you hope‍ and a ⁤future.”


Lamentations is a collection of poetic dirges mourning the destruction of Jerusalem. ⁤It mourns the consequences of the⁤ nation’s sin and‌ reflects ‍on⁤ the suffering endured. This book serves as a⁣ reminder ‍of the importance of recognizing the consequences of our actions and seeking repentance. Lamentations 3:22-23 offers hope amidst despair, “Because of the⁢ Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every⁢ morning; great‌ is your faithfulness.”


The book of Ezekiel contains vivid visions, prophecies, and teachings given to ‍the prophet Ezekiel. It addresses the exile of the Israelites, the ‌fall of Jerusalem, and the promise ⁣of restoration. Ezekiel emphasizes the importance of individual ‍responsibility and personal repentance. Ezekiel 36:26-27⁣ speaks of God’s ‌transformative power, “I will⁣ give you a new⁤ heart and ⁤put a new ⁤spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a ​heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to ⁤keep my laws.”


Daniel recounts the exile of Daniel and his friends in Babylon. ​It showcases their unwavering faith​ in God ⁢and⁤ reveals prophecies concerning​ future empires​ and the coming of the Messiah. The book centers on the trust ⁢in God’s sovereignty and His ability to deliver ‌His people. Daniel 3:17-18 demonstrates the unwavering faith​ of Daniel’s‍ friends, “If we are thrown into the blazing ⁣furnace, ‌the God ⁤we serve is able to deliver us from it,⁢ and he ‌will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if ‍he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods⁤ or worship the image of gold you have set up.”


Hosea presents a powerful metaphor of God’s love for His ​unfaithful people through the story of the prophet Hosea⁤ and his unfaithful⁤ wife. This book depicts the unending love, grace, and forgiveness that God offers to His people, even in the face of their continual rebellion. Hosea 6:6‍ highlights the⁤ importance of genuine relationship and mercy over mere sacrifice, “For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God ​rather than burnt offerings.”


Joel warns the people ⁣of Judah about the impending judgment and ‍calls for repentance.⁣ It ‌also speaks ⁣of ‌the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the restoration that follows. The book emphasizes the importance of turning to God in times ​of ‍calamity and the blessings ⁢that come from ‌genuine repentance. Joel 2:12-13 urges​ the people to return to God, “Even⁢ now,” declares the Lord, “return to me ‌with all your heart, with ⁤fasting and weeping and mourning. Rend ⁤your heart and not your garments. Return ‍to the Lord your God, for he⁤ is ⁣gracious ‌and compassionate,​ slow to anger and abounding in love,‍ and he relents‌ from ⁣sending calamity.”


Amos delivers strong messages of judgment against ​the nations for⁣ their social ​injustices and ⁣moral corruption. This book emphasizes the importance of social justice, mercy, and‌ compassion towards the marginalized. Amos 5:24 calls for righteousness ‍and justice, “Let justice roll on like ⁢a river, righteousness like a never-failing⁢ stream!”


Obadiah focuses⁢ on the judgment against Edom, a nation known for its ‍mistreatment of Israel. It​ warns‌ of the consequences of pride, arrogance, and oppressing others. Obadiah 1:15 serves as a ⁣reminder of⁣ the ultimate accountability, “The day of the ⁤Lord is near ⁤for all nations. As you ‌have done, it will be done to you; your deeds ​will ‌return upon ​your own head.”


Jonah tells the tale of the prophet Jonah who initially resists God’s command to deliver a ‌message of repentance to the city of Nineveh. It showcases the themes of obedience, repentance, and⁤ God’s relentless pursuit of His people. Jonah 2:9 portrays God’s ‍mercy and graciousness, “Salvation comes from the Lord.”


Micah prophesies ⁤judgment against idolatry, corruption, and social injustice. It ⁢also speaks⁢ of​ the future restoration and birth ⁣of the Messiah ​in Bethlehem. Micah 6:8 highlights ​the importance of walking ⁤humbly with God and practicing justice and mercy, “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. ​And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk‌ humbly‌ with your God.”


Nahum announces the final judgment against Nineveh, a city ⁣that previously repented​ due to Jonah’s message. It reminds‌ readers of the ​consequences⁢ of wickedness and⁢ the assurance of God’s justice. Nahum 1:7 ​reassures God’s faithfulness, “The Lord is good,‌ a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those‍ who trust in him.”


Habakkuk explores the ⁢prophet’s conversation with God concerning ⁣the rise of the wicked Babylonians and the apparent injustice in the world. It​ conveys the message of trust‌ in God’s sovereignty and the assurance that He works⁣ all things ​for good. Habakkuk 3:17-18 portrays unwavering faith amidst⁤ hardship, “Though ⁣the fig tree does not ⁣bud and there are no ⁣grapes⁢ on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no ​sheep in the pen and⁢ no cattle ⁤in the stalls, yet ⁢I will ⁣rejoice in ⁢the​ Lord, I ⁢will be joyful in God my Savior.”


Zephaniah warns of impending ​judgment and offers hope of restoration for the humble and ⁣righteous. It encourages readers to ‌seek the Lord and turn away from idolatry. Zephaniah 3:17 assures God’s love and​ presence, “The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty‌ Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will⁣ no longer rebuke you, but will⁤ rejoice over you with‍ singing.”


Haggai addresses the people who ⁣had ⁢neglected the rebuilding of the ⁣temple. It calls for ⁤renewed dedication and emphasizes⁤ the priority⁤ of seeking ⁣God in all aspects of life.‍ Haggai 1:8 urges the people to⁤ rebuild and honor God, “Go up into the mountains and bring‍ down timber and build my house, so that I may‌ take pleasure in it and be​ honored,” says the Lord.


Zechariah prophesies about the restoration of Jerusalem ‌and the coming ‍of the Messiah. It ​contains⁤ several visions‌ and messages of hope, emphasizing the importance of repentance and following God’s ways. Zechariah 4:6 reminds the people that success comes from relying on God’s⁤ Spirit,‌ “Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,” says the Lord Almighty.


Malachi is the final book of the Old Testament, addressing ‍the ⁤nation’s spiritual‍ decline and calling for⁣ repentance and obedience. It anticipates the‍ coming of the Messiah and ⁣the need for righteous living. Malachi 3:10 speaks of God’s faithfulness in blessing ⁣those who honor Him, ⁤”Bring the whole ⁢tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food‌ in my house.⁣ Test ⁢me in this,” ​says the Lord Almighty, “and see ⁢if I will not throw open the floodgates of‍ heaven and pour out so much⁣ blessing that there will not be room enough to ⁢store it.”

New Testament

  • Matthew: Matthew is the first book of⁤ the New Testament⁣ and depicts the life,⁣ teachings, death, and resurrection of ‍Jesus Christ.‌ It ⁢highlights His role​ as the Messiah and Savior.
  • Mark: Mark provides a concise account of⁤ Jesus’ ministry, emphasizing His miracles and teachings. It portrays Jesus as the servant of God and showcases His humility.
  • Luke: Luke offers a detailed narrative of​ Jesus’ life, ⁣ministry, and teachings. It includes parables, the birth of Jesus, and the ⁢story of the prodigal son.
  • John: John presents⁢ a unique perspective, focusing on Jesus’ ⁣identity as the ​Son of God. It highlights His ‌divinity, miracles, and profound teachings.
  • Acts: Acts chronicles the early ⁤Christian church, specifically the ministry of‌ the apostles after Jesus’ ascension.​ It includes the Day of Pentecost and the conversion of Saul (Paul).
  • Romans: Romans⁤ is a letter written by the apostle Paul, addressing the theology ​and core teachings of Christianity. It emphasizes salvation by faith and explores the relationship between Jews and Gentiles in the church.
  • 1 Corinthians: 1 Corinthians deals with various issues and challenges within the Corinthian church. Paul addresses topics such as divisions, sexual immorality, spiritual ‌gifts, and the resurrection.
  • 2 Corinthians: 2 Corinthians is a follow-up ⁤letter from Paul to the Corinthian church. It focuses on ⁢Paul’s ⁤ministry, the concept of reconciliation, and‍ the importance of sincere‍ devotion to Christ.
  • Galatians: Galatians addresses the⁣ issue of legalism and emphasizes salvation through faith in Christ alone. It ‍emphasizes the freedom believers have in Christ.
  • Ephesians: Ephesians explores‌ the ⁢unity of believers and the benefits of salvation in Christ. It emphasizes the‍ spiritual blessings in Christ and provides practical instructions for living ⁤a godly life.

The ⁢New Testament ‌continues with the remaining books of include


The book of Philippians, written by the Apostle Paul, is a letter⁤ to the Christian community in Philippi. It is part of the Pauline Epistles and ‌contains important ⁤teachings on joy, humility, ⁢and trust in God. This book serves as a source of encouragement and guidance for believers.


Colossians is another letter written by Paul, addressing ‌the church in Colossae. It emphasizes the supremacy of Christ and the importance of living a life rooted in Him. This book ‍challenges believers​ to keep ⁣their focus on Christ and to reject false teachings.

1 ⁤Thessalonians

The first letter to the Thessalonians, ⁣also written by Paul, is filled with instructions for the early Christian community. It discusses topics such as⁢ the second coming of Christ, the importance of love, and the need to live a​ holy⁣ life. This ​letter inspires believers to remain steadfast in their faith.

2 Thessalonians

Following ⁢his⁢ first letter, Paul wrote a second letter to the⁤ Thessalonians. This letter delves deeper into the topic ‌of the second coming of Christ and the signs preceding it. It also highlights the importance of endurance and warns against idleness within the ‌community.

1⁣ Timothy

The​ first letter to Timothy,‍ written by Paul, is a personal ⁢letter providing guidance on church leadership, false doctrines, and the conduct of the believers. It offers valuable insights​ on⁣ how to effectively​ lead and preserve the purity of the‍ church.

2⁣ Timothy

Paul’s second letter to Timothy is believed to be one of his last letters before his ⁣martyrdom.‍ It serves as both a farewell and an encouragement to Timothy, urging him to remain faithful in ⁣his ministry despite challenges and ‍opposition. This book emphasizes ​the⁤ importance of ⁤perseverance and standing firm in one’s⁤ faith.


Titus, written by Paul, is a letter addressed to Titus, a trusted companion and church leader. ⁣It offers instructions for church organization, ⁣the importance of sound doctrine, ⁤and maintaining good ​works within⁤ the community. This book ‌emphasizes the qualities of a godly leader.


Philemon is a personal ⁤letter​ from Paul to Philemon, a slave⁣ owner, urging him to receive ‍his runaway slave, Onesimus,​ with love and forgiveness. ⁤It showcases‌ the transformative power of the Gospel and highlights the importance of reconciliation and forgiveness among believers.


The book of Hebrews‍ is a powerful letter addressed to Jewish‍ believers who⁣ were⁣ tempted ⁤to turn back to their old religious rituals. ‌It presents Jesus as the ​ultimate fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies and encourages believers to persevere in their faith. Hebrews‍ also provides a profound understanding⁢ of the role of Christ as⁢ our High Priest.


The book of James, believed⁣ to‌ be written by James, the half-brother of Jesus, is a practical guide for the Christian life. It emphasizes​ the ⁢importance of faith combined with good deeds,‌ warns⁣ against favoritism, and offers wisdom on⁤ various aspects of life. This book provides practical ⁢instructions for living out⁤ one’s faith.

1 Peter

First Peter is a letter written ⁣by the Apostle Peter to encourage believers ​who were facing persecution. It offers comfort, hope, and instructions on how to endure ‌suffering ⁤with faith and trust in God. This book emphasizes the importance of⁣ holy living and reminds believers⁤ of their identity as God’s chosen people.

2 Peter

The second letter of Peter addresses false‍ teachers who were bringing destructive heresies into the church. It urges believers to remain grounded in⁤ the truth of the ‌Gospel and warns against the consequences of⁢ false teachings. ‌This book emphasizes the need for⁢ discernment and​ the importance of spiritual⁢ growth.

1 ⁣John

The first letter of John emphasizes the importance of‍ love and​ fellowship among believers.⁣ It ​urges Christians to live in obedience to God’s commandments and to walk in the light. This letter also highlights⁤ the​ assurance of salvation​ and the victory over the world through faith ‍in Jesus.

2 John

The second letter of John is a brief ‌letter addressed to a chosen ⁤lady and her children. ‌It warns against ‍receiving false teachers into their midst‌ and encourages them to walk in truth and love.​ This letter emphasizes the importance of discernment and upholding the true teachings of Christ.

3 John

Third John is a personal‌ letter addressed to Gaius, commending his faithfulness and highlighting the importance of hospitality and supporting​ those who ​proclaim the truth. This letter encourages believers to imitate good examples and embrace the‌ principles of‍ love and truth.


The‍ book⁤ of Jude is⁢ a powerful exhortation to contend ⁢for the faith against false teaching and‌ sexual immorality. It warns against the influence of apostates and‍ calls believers to ‌remain faithful to the truth. This book emphasizes the need ⁤for spiritual discernment and boldness in defending the Gospel.


Revelation is one of ‌the most captivating and‌ controversial books in the⁢ Bible. It contains a series ⁤of prophetic ⁤visions⁢ given to John, conveying God’s message to His people. It explores ⁤various themes such as the end times, spiritual warfare, and the ⁣ultimate victory of Christ. This book serves as a⁣ profound reminder of ​God’s sovereignty and the hope we have‍ in Him.

In conclusion, the Old Testament consists of 39 books, while the New Testament contains 27 books. Together, these books provide ​a comprehensive understanding of God’s plan for humanity, the life and teachings of Jesus, and the growth and establishment of the early ​church.

How Many Books in The Old and New testament Catholic

In his best-selling novel, “The Da Vinci Code,” Dan Brown wrote that the Bible was assembled during the famous Council of Nicea in 325 C.E., when Emperor Constantine and church authorities purportedly banned problematic books that didn’t conform to their secret agenda.

Except that’s not how it really went. “The Da Vinci Code” was fiction, but Brown wasn’t the first to credit the Council of Nicea with deciding which books to include in the Bible. Voltaire, writing in the 18th century, repeated a centuries-old myth that the Bible was canonized in Nicea by placing all of the known books on a table, saying a prayer and seeing which illegitimate texts fell to the floor.

In truth, there was no single church authority or council that convened to rubber stamp the biblical canon (official list of books in the Bible), not at Nicea or anywhere else in antiquity, explains Jason Combs, an assistant professor at Brigham Young University specializing in ancient Christianity.

“Dan Brown did us all a disservice,” says Combs. “We don’t have evidence that any group of Christians got together and said, ‘Let’s hash this out once and for all.'” (The Council of Nicea was convened to resolve a religious matter unrelated to the books of the Bible.)

What evidence scholars do have — in the form of theological treatises, letters and church histories that have survived for millennia — points to a much longer process of canonization. From the first through the fourth centuries and beyond, different church leaders and theologians made arguments about which books belonged in the canon, often casting their opponents as heretics.

The books that make up the Bible were written by various people over a period of more than 1,000 years, between 1200 B.C.E. and the first century C.E. The Bible contains a variety of literary genres, including poetry, history, songs, stories, letters and prophetic writings. These were originally written on scrolls of parchment, as opposed to being encapsulated in “books” as we think of them today. (Remember, the printing press wasn’t invented until 1440.)

how many books in the old and new testament kjv

The most read book of all time is the Bible, surpassing favorites such as The Lord of the Rings series, the Harry Potter series, and even classics like The Diary of Anne Frank and To Kill a Mockingbird. It is recorded by Business Insider that the Bible has sold 3.9 billion copies over the last 50 years, while the Harry Potter series has sold 400 million copies.

What is it about the Bible that has made it the book to “turn to” for the last half-century? It is a book that also has various translations to choose from and even different representations among the Catholic, Jewish, and Protestant faiths. The Book of Hebrews states it best when explaining why the Word of God is something everyone is drawn to:

For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart, (Hebrews 4:12).

Let’s journey through the origins of the Bible, learning as we go of how the Bible has affected not only the lives of countless people but has also become the foundational building blocks for the leading faiths in our world today.

How Many Books Are in the Bible?

To offer a brief overview, the current English Bible consists of 66 books with two distinct sections: The Old Testament (39 books) and the New Testament (27 books). The two sections are arranged this way to highlight the birth of Jesus, with the Old Testament sharing the emerging prophecies of the Messiah and Jesus’ actual birth, death, and resurrection taking place at the start of the New Testament with the Four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John).

There are about 50 versions of the English Bible in circulation, with revised versions well into the hundreds. The most popular of the Bible translations is that of King James Version, which is also public domain and doesn’t require obtaining permission for reprinting Scripture verses in published books. Bible Study Tools even has a list of the best-known versions and translations of the Bible for readers to peruse, with a brief explanation of each version.

What’s the Difference Between the Hebrew Bible and the Protestant Bible?

How the Bible was established to include what it does of stories and parables is part of the canonization process, which is, initially, a Christian communion performed by the Roman Catholic Church (as well as the Eastern Orthodox Church) to appoint selected deceased members of the church into the determined canon, or list, to be considered a saint in the church.

The same process was applied to determine what books of the Bible would be included, seen as to whether they were inspired by the Spirit or not, to be the authorized Word of God. It comes from the Greek word “kanon,” which means reed or measurement.

The Hebrew Bible consists of 24 books, believed to be determined by the councils of Jamnia in AD 90 and 118 as the list of books to be part of the Bible. There is still debate over what all the council selected to be canonized of the Bible, as this council has only been mentioned in ancient Hebrew writings and no confirmation has been found that this council existed or what they canonized. It is believed the Hebrew Bible was written between 1200 to 100 BC and has been in its current form since the second century BC.

The believed criteria used to determine what books were to be canonized, as the Word of God, may have included prophetic authorship (text written by an apostle or prophet), inner witnesses of the Holy Spirit, eyewitness testimonies, and then the final acceptance of the book by the people.

Given that Jesus’ disciples were eyewitnesses to Jesus’ actions and words, they were the ones to give authorization of the New Testament and whether something was divinely inspired or not.

The Hebrew Bible and the Protestant Bible

have the same content in the Old Testament, but the organization is different, such as, for example, the Hebrew Bible has one book of Samuel while the Protestant Bible has two. Primarily for those of Jewish faith, especially Messianic Jews, the first five books of the Bible are the Torah (or Pentateuch) and the main asset of the Bible, detailing how God chose Abraham to be the father of many nations and established the Law (Ten Commandments) as the way to live for God. The New Testament is seen as commentary to the Torah/Old Testament.

What’s the Difference Between the Protestant Bible and the Catholic Bible?

The Protestant Bible comprises much of the Hebrew Bible but organizes the stories into a larger collection than its Jewish predecessor. While the Hebrew Bible was formed entirely from ancient scrolls (24 for each book), the Protestant Bible combines the Hebrew Bible with the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible written in the third and second century BC.

The Eastern/Greek Orthodox Church

The Eastern/Greek Orthodox Church use the New King James Version or other translations that allow more of the Greek translation to be used, coupled with their belief that the Bible’s New Testament, with the story of Jesus, is precedent over the Old Testament. The Catholic Bible consists of 46 books in the Old Testament and 27 books in the New Testament (which is the same NT as the Protestant Bible).

The additional Old Testament sections in the Catholic Bible

The additional Old Testament sections in the Catholic Bible are Tobith, Judith, Wisdom of Solomon, Ecclesiasticus (Sirach), Baruch (includes Letters of Jeremiah), I and II Maccabees, and additional sections for the books of Daniel and Esther. Those of the Catholic faith believe what is in their Bible was canonized by the Synod of Rome council and the early church in AD 382.

It was decided several years later, during the Reformation, by Protestants to follow more of the Greek translations of the Bible instead of the entire Hebrew Bible, which had been canonized and accepted in the original King James Bible by the Catholic Church.

Thus, the Apocrypha is present in the Catholic Bible as the collection of books not found in the Protestant Bible. They can be found in the original 1611 King James Bible but were pulled from the Bible in 1885 and named “deuterocanonical books.”

Other Bible Translations for Other Faiths

Jehovah’s Witnesses use their own version of the Bible, New World Translation of Holy Scriptures, which they believe is more accurate, clearer, and has God’s name listed as they believe it should in the text. Before this version, Jehovah’s Witnesses heavily consorted to the King James Bible.

For Mormons,

there are four books they hold as the Word of God: The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ (which have believed records of how God interacted with people of America from 2000 BC to 400 AD), the King James Bible, the Doctrine and Covenants (collection of declarations about the formation and regulation of the Church of Jesus Christ in the last days), and The Pearl of Great Price (writings from Mormon church founder Joseph Smith).

What Does This Mean?

One can see while learning the path toward the creation of the Bible, that it is still one open to interpretation of whose Bible relates most to God’s spoken word on paper. The debate over using canonized Scripture or more Greek translation-infused Scripture will continue, as more people gravitate to reading and studying the Bible and the truth of the Holy Trinity.

What is hoped is readers find a translation that allows their relationship with God to bloom and strengthen their awareness that Jesus lived and died for us so that we would be united with God for eternity.

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