The Bible, comprised of the Old Testament and New Testament, is one of the most influential works on everything from antiquity to current pop culture.
Considered the result of divine inspiration, the history surrounding and contents found in this book contain a great deal of fascinating Bible facts.
Top 50 Facts About the Bible
1.) The term ‘Bible’ originates from the Greek biblia. This word, meaning ‘books’ or ‘scrolls,’ stems from Byblos, the Greek name for the ancient Phoenician city of Gebal, antiquity’s official provider of papyrus.
2.) You know the Bible as a complete text, but its contents were actually assembled from works by an array of different authors inspired by the Holy Spirit. The Bible was written by 40 men over 1,500 years that were: Kings, priest, profit, shepherds, fishermen, physician, tentmaker, and tax collector that have all contributed to the 66 books of the Bible.
3.) The word “Trinity” is never mentioned in the Bible.
4.) The stories that make up the contents of the Bible will take you to lands found on the continents of Africa, Asia and Europe.
5.) The books of the Old Testament took more than a millenium to write. In sharp contrast, the books of the New Testament took less than a century.
6.) Comprised of two verses, Psalm 117 is the Bible’s shortest chapter.
7.) The longest, with 176 verses is Psalm 119.
8.) The shortest verse in English language bibles is John 11:35. It simply states ‘Jesus wept.’ It is not the shortest verse in earlier language bibles.
9.) With over 70 words, Esther 8:9 has the distinction of being the longest verse found in the Bible.
10.) You can find the Bible’s longest word in Isaiah 8:3. Mahershalalhashbaz was the name of the prophet Isaiah’s second born son. His name means ‘hurry to the spoils.’
11.) The name Adam comes from the Hebrew ‘adama’ which translates to ‘earth.’ God created Adam out of the clay of the earth before breathing life into him.
12.) Known as the name of the Devil before his fall from Heaven, ‘Lucifer’ takes his name from the Latin ‘lux ferre’ which means ‘light bringing’ or ‘morning star’. 2 Corinthians 11:14 states: “And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.”
13.) You know Jesus is called the ‘Christ.’ This word evolved from the Greek ‘khristos’ which means ‘anointed’ because after His resurrection Jesus would bring salvation to all mankind.
14.) Christmas carols would have you believe that there were three wise men who visited Jesus; however, the Bible does not mention the exact number. This misconception is likely based on the three gifts the wise men brought: gold, frankincense and myrrh.
15.) Though often thought of as an only child, Jesus was one of many children. While there may have been more, four brothers (James, Joses, Jude and Simon) are mentioned in the Bible along with two nameless sisters.
16.) The physical appearance of Jesus you have come to know is likely inaccurate. Instead of European features of light skin, hair and eyes, it is more likely that he possessed Middle Eastern features.
The Bible itself gives us no description of his physical features. The closest thing we het to a description of Jesus is located in Isaiah 53:2: “He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.”
17.) The Bible concludes as most prayers do, with the word ‘Amen’ which translate literally to “truly” or “so be it.”
18.) The books of the Bible form the basic traditions of the three Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
19.) It may surprise you that with such an array of citizens, about eight out of every ten Americans believe the Bible is inspired by or is the precise word of God.
20.) Muslims believe the Bible is the word of God, but that man has perverted its meaning. To them, the Qu’ran was delivered as a correction.
21.) Annually, more than 100 million Bible copies are purchased.
22.) At that rate, it should come as no surprise that it is history’s best-selling book according to the Guinness Book of World Records. Over five billion copies have been sold.
23.) The Bible is also the most frequently stolen. This may be due to the fact that you can find copies everywhere from churches to hotels.
24.) You can also find the Bible fully translated into over 500 languages and partial translations in almost 3,000.
25.) King Henry VIII sanctioned the first authorized Bible printed in the English language. The Great Bible of 1539 became the official bible of the Church of England.
27.) The KJV is made of 66 books, 1189 chapters, 31,102 verses and 788,258 words.
28) The first version to use numbered verses was the Geneva Bible. This bible was used by Shakespeare and brought to America in 1620 by the Pilgrims.
29.) Have you heard of the ‘Wicked Bible?’ or the ‘Sinner’s Bible?’ This edition was published in 1631 and contained an important typo ‘Thou Shalt Commit Adultery.’ Only nine still exist.
30.) The first full translation from Latin Vulgate to English was performed by John Wycliffe, “Morning Star of the Reformation”. This version did not sit well with the Catholic Church who, exhumed and burned his body 44 years later after his death.
32.) Johannes Gutenberg printed the first Bible using changeable metal type. He made no profit of these ‘Gutenberg Bibles.’
33.) Robert Aitken printed the first English Bible in America. His is a copy of the KJV minus the Apocrypha.
34.) You probably know that China is the world’s biggest manufacturer of goods and textiles, but did you know they are also the biggest manufacturer of Bibles?
35.) Brendan Powell Smith published ‘The Brick Bible’ in 2011. Using LEGO sets to recreate biblical events, Smith’s controversial images caused its banning at Sam’s Clubs.
37.) Did you know there are at least 185 songs in the Bible and 80% of these are Psalms. Moses song (Exodus 15) is the first song mentioned in the Bible and also the last in Revelations 15 where John sees those who overcome the beast and sings the Song of Moses.
38.) Did you know the Bible never contradicts itself. This in and of itself is a miracle considering the Bible was written by 40 men over a 1,500 years!
39.) The Nano Bible is the world’s smallest. The Old Testament’s 1.2 million letters were etched onto a silicone disk that can fit on a pen tip.
40.) Louis Waynai constructed the world’s largest Bible in 1930. His bible is 43.5 inches tall, 98 inches wide while open and weighs 1,094 pounds.
41.) The Bay Psalm Book was the first book printed in British America. A Puritanical translation of the Old Testament, this book sold for over $14 million making it the most expensive book in the world.
42.) The groups most likely to read the Bible are African Americans, older people and women.
43.) The most reproduced paintings ever are Michelangelo’s ‘The Creation of Adam’ and da Vinci’s ‘The Last Supper.’ Michelangelo’s painting, depicting the relationship between God and man, is considered the zenith of Renaissance art.
44.) Many of the classics you have read take attributes from the Bible. One such work is ‘Moby Dick.’ Melville named many of his characters after individuals found in the Bible including Ahab and Ishmael.
Another is J. R. R. Tolkien’s classic fantasy book, ‘The Lord of the Rings’ which was made into a film trilogy. What many don’t know is that Tolkien was an editor for the English translation of the Jerusalem Bible—translating the book of Jonah!
45.) Charlton Heston landed the role of Moses in the 1956 film ‘The Ten Commandments’ because of his resemblance to the Moses statue by Michelangelo. Almost a decade later he would play Michelangelo in ‘The Agony and the Ecstasy.’
46.) 1999’s smash hit ‘The Matrix’ is greatly influenced by the Bible. Some concepts include a rebel base called Zion, a ship called Nebuchadnezzar and the character Cypher whose name is a reference to Lucifer.
47.) Kindle’s top three highlighted books ever are Crossway Bibles’ ‘The Holy Bible,’ Walter Isaacson’s ‘Steve Jobs,’ and ‘The Hunger Games,’
48.) Author Joseph Conrad was able to learn English by reading the Bible. Sadly, when he finished with a page, he ripped it out and used it to roll his cigarettes.
49.) Centuries before Christians searched Scripture on illuminated digital screens, the Word of God was ‘lit up’ with masterful calligraphy, colorful illustrations, and gold and silver filigree in the illuminated Bibles and manuscripts of the Middle Ages.
50.) You can hear many of the industry’s biggest stars and how the Bible inspired them to write many of their hit songs. These include Springsteen’s ‘Adam Raised a Cain,’ Metallica’s ‘Blackened,’ Dylan’s ‘Every Grain of Sand’ and U2’s ‘40.’
Do You Know Any Interesting Bible Facts?
Please scroll down and list them in the comment section below!