Bible at a glance

Layout of Bible books

Number of chapters in each of the 66 "books" with a list of the books in order from most chapters to the least number of chapters

The chart below is a list of all 66 canonical books of the Bible along with the number of chapters in each book. Most of the books were written for a group of readers. Those which were written to specific individuals are identified with asterisk. This list of Bible books has them in the order in which they appear in Bibles today. The order is more in terms of subject matter -- history, wisdom literature, prophecy, gospel accounts, letters and so on -- than in the chronological order in which they were written.

For example, Bible scholars say Mark was likely the first Gospel account to be written. However, Matthew is the first book of the New Testament, likely because it makes more references to the Old Testament than any of the other three Gospel accounts. Scholars also think1Thessalonians was the first of Paul's letters or epistles to be written. However, Romans the first book in the section containing his letters to churches and individuals. The same kind of thing occurs in the Old Testament. Esther, for instance, is about events during the Babylonian exile while books like Psalms and Isaiah, which were written prior to the Exile, appear after the Esther's story in Bibles.

Book of the Old Testament, a.k.a. the Hebrew Bible

list of Bible books
Genesis through Song of Songs with number of chapters in each book

list of Bible books
Isaiah through Malachi with number of chapters in each book

Books of the New Testament

list of New Testament
books showing types of writings and the number of chapters in each book

*Biblical writings addressed to an individual

nextSee the Old Testament portion of this outline in a graphic table [ more ]

What are the longest and the shortest books of the Bible?

Well, there are two ways to measure the books of the Bible. One way is by the number of chapters and the other way is by the number of words. By number of chapters, Psalms is the longest book. In terms of the shortest book, Obadiah, Second John, Third John, Jude and Philemon only have one chapter each. In terms of actual words, Jeremiah is the longest book and Third John is the shortest.

Books of Bible ranked by the number of chapters

From the most chapters to the least number of chapters

  1. Psalms -- 150
  2. Isaiah -- 66
  3. Jeremiah -- 52
  4. Genesis -- 50
  5. Ezekiel -- 48
  6. Job -- 42
  7. Exodus -- 40
  8. Second Chronicles -- 36
  9. Numbers -- 36
  10. Deuteronomy -- 34
  11. First Samuel -- 31
  12. Proverbs -- 31
  13. First Chronicles -- 29
  14. Acts -- 28
  15. Matthew -- 28
  16. Leviticus -- 27
  17. Second Kings -- 25
  18. Second Samuel -- 24
  19. Joshua -- 24
  20. Luke -- 24
  21. First Kings -- 22
  22. Revelation -- 22
  23. John -- 21
  24. Judges -- 21
  25. First Corinthians -- 16
  26. Mark -- 16
  27. Romans -- 16
  28. Hosea -- 14
  29. Zechariah -- 14
  30. Second Corinthians -- 13
  31. Esther -- 13
  32. Hebrews -- 13
  33. Nehemiah -- 13
  34. Daniel -- 12
  35. Ecclesiastes -- 12
  36. Ezra -- 10
  37. Amos -- 9
  38. Song of Solomon -- 8
  39. FirstTimothy -- 6
  40. Ephesians -- 6
  41. Galatians -- 6
  42. First John -- 5
  43. First Peter -- 5
  44. First Thessalonians -- 5
  45. James -- 5
  46. Lamentations -- 5
  47. Second Timothy -- 4
  48. Colossians -- 4
  49. Jonah -- 4
  50. Malachi -- 4
  51. Micah -- 4
  52. Philippians -- 4
  53. Ruth -- 4
  54. Second Thessalonians -- 3
  55. Second Peter -- 3
  56. Habakkuk -- 3
  57. Joel -- 3
  58. Nahum -- 3
  59. Titus -- 3
  60. Zephaniah -- 3
  61. Haggai -- 2
  62. Second John -- 1
  63. Third John -- 1
  64. Jude -- 1
  65. Obadiah -- 1
  66. Philemon -- 1

Bible books ranked by number of words

From the most words to the least words

Which Bible book is the longest? Well, it's not necessarily the one with the most chapter divisions. Take a look at this list.

The word count given is the number of words each book has in the original languages. That word count would, of course, vary from language translation to language translation

  1. Jeremiah -- 33,002 words
  2. Genesis -- 32,046 words
  3. Psalms -- 30,147 words
  4. Ezekiel -- 29,918 words
  5. Exodus -- 25,957 words
  6. Isaiah -- 25,608 words
  7. Numbers -- 25,048 words
  8. Deuteronomy -- 23,008 words
  9. Second Chronicles -- 21,349 words
  10. First Samuel -- 20,837 words
  11. First Kings -- 20,361 words
  12. Luke -- 19,482 words
  13. Leviticus -- 18,852 words
  14. Second Kings -- 18,784 words
  15. Acts -- 18,450 words
  16. Matthew -- 18,346 words
  17. Second Samuel -- 17,170 words
  18. First Chronicles -- 16,664 words
  19. Joshua -- 15,671 words
  20. John -- 15,635 words
  21. Judges -- 15,385 words
  22. Job -- 12,674 words
  23. Mark -- 11,304 words
  24. Proverbs -- 9,921 words
  25. Revelation -- 9,851 words
  26. Daniel -- 9,001 words
  27. Nehemiah -- 8,507 words
  28. Romans -- 7,111 words
  29. First Corinthians -- 6,830 words
  30. Ezra -- 5,605 words
  31. Hebrews -- 4,953 words
  32. Esther -- 4,932 words
  33. Zechariah -- 4,855 words
  34. Ecclesiastes -- 4,537 words
  35. Second Corinthians -- 4,477 words
  36. Hosea -- 3,615 words
  37. Amos -- 3,027 words
  38. Ephesians -- 2,422 words
  39. Lamentations -- 2,324 words
  40. Galatians -- 2,230 words
  41. First John -- 2,141 words
  42. Micah -- 2,118 words
  43. Ruth -- 2,039 words
  44. Song of Solomon -- 2,020 words
  45. James -- 1,742 words
  46. First Peter -- 1,684 words
  47. Philippians -- 1,629 words
  48. First Timothy -- 1,591 words
  49. Colossians -- 1,582 words
  50. First Thessalonians -- 1,481 words
  51. Joel -- 1,447 words
  52. Malachi -- 1,320 words
  53. Second Timothy -- 1,238 words
  54. Zephaniah -- 1,141 words
  55. Second Peter -- 1,099 words
  56. Jonah -- 1,082 words
  57. Habakkuk -- 1,011 words
  58. Haggai -- 926 words
  59. Nahum -- 855 words
  60. Second Thessalonians -- 823 words
  61. Titus -- 659 words
  62. Jude -- 461 words
  63. Obadiah -- 440 words
  64. Philemon -- 335 words
  65. Second John -- 245 words
  66. Third John -- 219 words

    -- Howard Culbertson,

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