Books of The Bible in Chronological Order List

The Books of the Bible in Chronological Order List provides a detailed chronological listing and time-line of the books that make up the Bible. This can be useful when studying and analyzing the text of the Bible and how it all fits together.

The Bible is an intriguing old book that has changed the world and helped a large number of people. However, there are many different versions of the Bible and keeping track of what’s in which version can be tough if you don’t know your Bible well. This article will give you the chronological order of books within the Bible and will help increase your knowledge of the word ‘Bible’.

Below is a list of the books of the Bible in chronological order.

1. Genesis

Author:

Genesis is the first book in the list of Bible books in chronological order. It is also the first in the Hebrew Bible’s first significant division, known as the “Torah.”

When it was written:

Scholars believe Moses wrote the Pentateuch between 1440 and 1400 B.C., while Israel was wandering in the desert.

Scholars who support the Documentary Hypothesis place the Pentateuch’s compilation as a single work around 550 B.C., during the Babylonian exile.

2. Exodus

Author:

Although the book is anonymous, tradition and many scholars believe Moses is the author. More information about the authorship of the entire Pentateuch can be found in the discussion of Genesis above. God reveals His covenant name for the first time in Exodus 3:15.

When it was written:

For more information, see the Genesis section of this post.

3. Leviticus

Author:

Although the book does not name its author, tradition and most scholars agree that Moses wrote Leviticus. More information about the authorship of the entire Pentateuch can be found in the discussion of Genesis above.

When it was written:

For more information, see the Genesis section above.

4. Numbers

Author:

Most scholars agree with the widespread belief that Moses wrote the book of Numbers. More information about the authorship of the entire Pentateuch can be found in the discussion of Genesis above.

When it was written:

For more information, see the Genesis section above.

5. Deuteronomy

Author:

Deuteronomy is traditionally attributed to Moses. More information about the authorship of the entire Pentateuch can be found in the discussion of Genesis above.

When it was written:

Scholars and tradition believe that this was Moses’ final book, written shortly before the Israelites entered the Promised Land.

For more information, see the Genesis section above.

6. Joshua

Author:

Despite its name, the book of Joshua is anonymous. It is the first historical book in the Christian Bible and the first book in the Prophets division of the Hebrew Bible. It tells the story of Joshua leading Israel into the Promised Land.

When it was written:

Scholars have proposed a variety of dates, ranging from the time of Joshua (probably around 1390 B.C.) to the Persian period (fifth and fourth century B.C.).

Some texts indicate that at least portions were written near the time of the events:

Some of it was written by eyewitnesses (Joshua 5:1, 6).

Rahab was still alive and well (Joshua 6:25).

Other texts, however, suggest a later date or additions:

There are 12 instances of “to this day,” indicating that the author is far removed from the events (for example, Joshua 7:26; 8:29; 15:63).

An eyewitness would not be required to cite a source (Joshua 10:13).

7. Psalms

Author:

Psalms contains five collections of compositions by various authors. It is one of the most widely read books in the Bible. In terms of literary genre, it is one of the Holy Book’s poetry books.

When it was written:

Scholars believe that the composition of all psalms took nearly a thousand years, from Moses’ time (around 1400 B.C.) to the Babylonian captivity (Jerusalem was destroyed in 586 B.C.).

Given that David’s psalms account for nearly half of the book of Psalms, the majority of its composition would have taken place during his and Solomon’s lifetimes, in the late eleventh and tenth centuries B.C.

8. Judges

Author:

The book of Judges’ author is unknown. It was written by the prophet and judge Samuel, according to Jewish tradition.

When it was written:

The publication date of this book is also unknown. Scholars argue that the phrase “there was no king in Israel in those days” (Judges 17:6, 18:1, 19:1) indicates that it was written after the monarchy was established (tenth century B.C.).

9. Ruth

Author:

Ruth’s book is anonymous. The Jewish tradition attributes it to Samuel, but most scholars attribute it to an unknown author who lived during the monarchy.

When it was written:

Scholars believe that the genealogy of David at the end of the book, as well as the literary style, indicate that it was written during Solomon’s reign (ca. 950 B.C.). They believe the author was a member of the royal court’s staff, possibly a scribe.

10. Proverbs

Author:

Proverbs is a well-known wisdom book from the Bible. According to the biblical text, it is a collection of writings by various authors:

Proverbs of Solomon, son of David (Chapters 1–24) (Proverbs 1:1).

Chapters 25–29: the proverbs of Solomon as compiled by the scribes of King Hezekiah (Proverbs 25:1).

Chapter 30: Agur, Jakeh’s sonproverbs ,’s (Proverbs 30:1).

Proverbs of King Lemuel, Chapter 31 (Proverbs 31:1).

Some modern scholars dispute Solomon’s authorship, claiming that the book was written during the postexilic period. However, there is no credible evidence to support that theory.

When it was written:

Between 970 and 930 B.C., Solomon wrote his proverbs. Between 729 and 686 B.C., Hezekiah’s scribes compiled the different sayings. There is no further mention of Agur and Lemuel in the Holy Scriptures. Scholars believe that their proverbs were compiled by Hezekiah’s scribes, or that they were added later.

Scholars believe it was written in the fifth century B.C. if Solomon was not the author.

11. Song of Songs or Song of Solomon

Author:

The first verse indicates that Solomon either wrote it, owned it, or had it written about him (Song of Songs 1:1). Solomon wrote 1,005 songs, according to the Bible (1 Kings 4:32), so it is reasonable to consider him the author of this book.

Some scholars doubt Solomon’s authorship and attribute it to an unknown author from the postexilic period, but there isn’t much evidence to back up their claims.

When it was written:

If Solomon was the author, it was written around 950 B.C. If not, it was written in the fifth century B.C., according to critics.

12. 1 Samuel

Author:

It is unknown who wrote 1 and 2 Samuel. Initially, both books were written as a single volume. The Septuagint translators divided them into two parts (a Greek translation of the Old Testament from the second century B.C.).

Both books are said to have been written by the prophet and judge Samuel, according to Jewish tradition. However, he could not have written the events that occurred after his death (1 Samuel 25:1). According to some scholars, he wrote the material up to that point, and then the prophets Nathan and Gad finished the book. This claim is based on 1 Chronicles 29:29.

When it was written:

The books of 1 and 2 Samuel are historical accounts of the establishment of the monarchy in Israel, with David as the central figure.

Scholars disagree about who wrote it and when, but most agree that the entire book (1 and 2 Samuel) was completed during Solomon’s reign, around 950 B.C.

13. 2 Samuel

Author:

Despite the fact that both 1 and 2 Samuel were traditionally attributed to the prophet and judge Samuel, the events in 2 Samuel occurred after his death. As a result, some scholars credit 2 Samuel to the prophets Nathan and Gad (1 Chronicles 29:29).

When it was written:

1 and 2 Samuel were initially written as a single volume. Most scholars believe they were written during the time of the events they depict and concluded during Solomon’s reign (around 950 B.C.).

14. Ecclesiastes

Author:

The author introduced himself as “the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem,” and added, “I the Preacher was king over Israel in Jerusalem” (Ecclesiastes 1:1,12 KJV). It should be noted that “son of David” can refer to a descendant, not necessarily his son.

Because of the third-person reference to the “Preacher” in Ecclesiastes 12:9-14, some scholars question Solomon’s authorship. Others, however, believe that those verses were added later by a second author who compiled the book. The work of a later compiler/editor may also explain the book’s distinct literary style.

When it was written:

If Solomon wrote this book, he did so in his later years. This would be around 940 B.C.

Scholars who dispute Solomon’s authorship, or who argue for a later editor, regard it as a postexilic text written as late as 200 B.C.

15. Job

Author:

The author of Job’s book is unknown. Moses has traditionally been regarded as the author, but there is no evidence to support this.

Most academics disagree on whether this book was written by one or more authors. Scholars concluded that a late author wrote this book using preexisting material, most likely passed down through oral tradition, based on the differences in style between the narrative and the speeches.

When it was written:

Based on a careful examination of the text, scholars believe that the events described in Job occurred during the patriarchal period (second millennium B.C.).

They believe this book was written between Solomon’s reign (tenth century B.C.) and the postexilic period (fifth century B.C.).

16. Jonah

Author:

The book tells the story of the prophet Jonah, the son of Amittai and the most well-known of the minor prophets (Jonah 1:1). Most scholars agree that Jonah either wrote the book himself or was the primary source for the author. Because the book was written in the third person, the case for an unknown author is stronger.

When it was written:

According to 2 Kings 14:25, a prophet named Jonah, son of Amittai, was active in Israel during the reign of Jeroboam II, between 793/92 and 753 B.C. If Jonah is the author, he most likely wrote the book around that time.

Based on linguistic features, scholars who believe the author of this book is unknown place its composition in the fifth or fourth century B.C.

17. Amos

Author:

This book contains Amos’ prophecies (Amos 1:1). It’s impossible to say whether he wrote it himself or if another unknown author did.

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When it was written:

Between 760 and 750 B.C., the prophet Amos was active during the reigns of King Uzziah of Judah and King Jeroboam II of Israel (Amos 1:1). Scholars believe Amos or a scribe wrote the book during that time period.

18. Hosea

Author:

Scholars are unable to determine whether the prophet Hosea wrote the book that records his prophecies himself (Hosea 1:1-2) or if it was written by an unknown author.

When it was written:

The prophet Hosea lived during the reigns of Judah’s Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, as well as Israel’s Jeroboam II (Hosea 1:1). Scholars place the ministry’s years between 755 and 715 B.C. The book was most likely written near the end of that period, following the fall of Samaria (the northern kingdom’s capital) in 722 B.C.

19. Joel

Author:

This book contains the prophecies of Joel, Pethuel’s son (Joel 1:1). This information, however, is insufficient to determine who he was and whether he wrote the book himself.

When it was written:

The book contains no references to kings or other datable events, so it cannot be dated with certainty. Scholars believe it was written between the fall of Samaria (the northern kingdom’s capital) in 722 B.C. and the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C.

20. Micah

Author:

Most scholars agree that the prophet Micah wrote parts of the book, particularly the judgment prophecies. They regard the prophecies of hope (Micah 2:12-13; 4:1-5:9; 7:8-20) as an afterthought.

When it was written:

Between 750 and 686 B.C., the prophet Micah was active during the reigns of Judah’s kings Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah (Micah 1:1). Scholars believe Micah composed his prophecies around 700 B.C. They also believe that any later additions were made in the early seventh century B.C. because Jeremiah (Jeremiah 26:18) quoted it around 608 B.C.

21. Isaiah

Author:

The prophet Isaiah, son of Amoz, is the only author mentioned in the book (Isaiah 1:1, 2:1, 13:1). That is something that both Jewish and Christian traditions agree on.

Many scholars, however, have objected to the single author theory. They claim that variations in style and content in various sections of the book led them to identify at least three different authors:

Chapters 1–39 are thought to have been written by the prophet Isaiah himself.

Chapters 40 to 55 would have been written by a second author, an anonymous prophet.

Chapters 56 to 66 were allegedly written by a third author, another anonymous prophet.

Scholars who agree that Isaiah wrote the entire book offer numerous arguments in support of the traditional single authorship position. Here are some of their points of contention:

The style of an author can change due to a variety of factors such as age, new experiences, purpose, audience, and so on. In addition, for the later chapters, Isaiah could have used a disciple.

Some expressions are used throughout the book that point to a single author. For example, in chapters 1–39, Isaiah refers to God as “the Holy One of Israel” 12 times and 14 times in chapters 40–66. Outside of Isaiah, it appears only six times in the entire Old Testament. There are 25 additional Hebrew words or expressions used throughout the book of Isaiah that are not found elsewhere in the Old Testament.

Several New Testament quotations attribute them to the prophet Isaiah. All of those texts, including Matthew 3:3 (quoting Isaiah 40:3), Matthew 4:14-16 (quoting Isaiah 9:1-2), Romans 9:27-29 (quoting Isaiah 10:22-23 and 1:9), and Romans 10:20-21 (quoting Isaiah 65:1,2), assign to Isaiah quotes from the entire book, including chapters 40-66.

No other authors are mentioned in the book. Furthermore, there is no other information available about other authors. Because Isaiah is one of the most important prophets of the Old Testament, this silence regarding other authors cannot be overlooked.

One of the reasons some critics doubt Isaiah’s authorship of chapters 40-48 is the accuracy of the future predictions about the Babylonian exile. Despite the accuracy of these predictions, there is no evidence in the text that the author was familiar with life in Babylon. This implies that the author did not personally experience the Babylonian captivity, but rather wrote about it through divine inspiration from the Holy Spirit.

These are some of the reasons why many scholars agree that the entire book was written by the prophet Isaiah.

When it was written:

Many scholars believe that Isaiah wrote the entire book by himself. They believe he wrote chapters 1–39 shortly after 701 B.C. (when the Assyrian army was destroyed – see Isaiah 37). In addition, they believe he wrote chapters 40-66 near the end of his life, around 681 B.C.

Those who support the three authors theory argue that the second author wrote chapters 40-55 in the sixth century B.C., and the third author was a postexilic prophet who wrote chapters 56-66 around 400 B.C.

22. Nahum

Author:

The prophecies of Nahum, the Elkoshite, are contained in this book (Nahum 1:1). There is no additional evidence to support or refute his authorship.

When it was written:

The book foreshadows the fall of Nineveh, which occurred in 612 B.C. It mentions the destruction of Thebes in Egypt in 663 B.C. (Nahum 3:8-10). As a result, scholars believe it was written around 630 B.C.

23. Zephaniah

Author:

The prophecies of Zephaniah, son of Cushi, are contained in the book (Zephaniah 1:1). Because of his high social standing, he most likely wrote the book himself.

When it was written:

The prophet Zephaniah lived during Josiah’s reign, which lasted from 640 to 609 B.C. (Zephaniah 1:1). Scholars believe he wrote this book around 622 B.C., after the Book of the Law was discovered (2 Kings 22), but before the king’s reformation in 628 B.C.

24. Habakkuk

Author:

Scholars believe Habakkuk wrote this book himself due to a lack of additional information (Habakkuk 1:1, 3:1).

When it was written:

Because Habakkuk predicted the Babylonian invasion (Habakkuk 1:6), many scholars place this book after Josiah’s (640-609 B.C.) reign, at the start of Jehoiakim’s (609-598 B.C. ), between 612 and 605 B.C. Other scholars place it around 630 B.C., prior to Josiah’s reformation.

25. Jeremiah

Author:

The vast majority of scholars agree that the book that bears his name was written by the prophet Jeremiah, son of Hilkiah (Jeremiah 1:1). He dictated his prophecies to Baruch the scribe, who wrote them down (Jeremiah 36:4).

When it was written:

Scholars believe that the book’s contents cover Jeremiah’s ministry from 626 to 580 B.C. Scholars also agree that after Jehoiakim’s release, around 561-560 B.C., chapter 52 was added later, possibly by Baruch.

26. Daniel

Author:

The book of Daniel is located in the Christian Bible between the major prophets and the minor prophets. The vast majority of scholars regard it as a significant prophet. It is found in the major division of the Hebrew Bible known as Writings, not in Prophets. Daniel is best known for being thrown into the lions’ den for refusing to stop praying to God every day, which is one of the most well-known Bible passages today.

The book’s author introduces himself as Daniel (Daniel 7:28; 8:1,15; 9:2; 10:2). This book was quoted by Jesus and attributed to the prophet Daniel (Matthew 24:15-16).

Some scholars doubt the visions’ authorship because they refer to Daniel in the third person (Daniel 7:1, 10:1). Those scholars believe that those texts were written by someone close to Daniel.

When it was written:

The events of the book took place between 605 and 536 B.C. (Daniel 1:1). (Daniel 10:1). As a result, most scholars believe that the book was completed by 530 B.C.

27. Ezekiel

Author:

The visions of Ezekiel, the priest, are recorded in the book (Ezekiel 1:3). The use of first-person pronouns from the first verse implies that Ezekiel is the author.

A few scholars have questioned his authorship, claiming that this is a postexilic work, but the vast majority of scholars believe these claims are unfounded.

When it was written:

The author, unlike other prophetic books, recorded the dates of Ezekiel’s prophecies. Scholars concluded that the book contains historical records from 593 to 571 B.C., spanning 22 years of Ezekiel’s ministry.

28. Lamentations

Author:

This book’s author is unknown. Because of 2 Chronicles 35:25, the Septuagint and Jewish tradition attribute it to Jeremiah. However, that verse refers to Josiah’s death, not the fall of Jerusalem, which is the theme of this book’s lamentations. However, because no author is named, Jeremiah is considered a viable option.

When it was written:

Most scholars believe the book was written by an eyewitness to the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C., and that he wrote it soon after, no later than 575 B.C.

29. Obadiah

Author:

Other than his name, there is no information about the author (Obadiah 1:1). This person is not the same as the one mentioned in 1 Kings 18:3-16. Obadiah, which means “Lord’s servant,” was a common name in the Old Testament, making it difficult to identify this author.

When it was written:

The book makes no mention of any king’s name, which would help determine when it was written. Scholars believe that Obadiah 1:11-17 indicates that a major disaster had just struck Jerusalem. It was most likely the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C., according to experts. If so, this book was most likely written soon after, no later than 553 B.C.

30. 1 Kings

Author:

It is unknown who wrote 1 and 2 Kings. Originally, both books were written as a single volume. The Septuagint translators divided them into two parts.

According to Jewish tradition, Jeremiah wrote 1 and 2 Kings, but most scholars today dismiss this possibility. They believe that the books of 1 and 2 Kings were written or compiled by an unknown Judahite exile.

When it was written:

Together, 1 and 2 Kings form a history book about the kings of Israel, from King David’s death to the fall of Jerusalem and Babylonian captivity.

Parts of both books were written before their final editions, according to the text. For example, 1 Kings 8:8 refers to the Temple as if it was still standing at the time the text was written, but the Temple was destroyed in 2 Kings 25:8-17. Three outside sources were cited (1 Kings 11:41; 14:19, 29). Scholars believe the author also used the books of Jeremiah and Isaiah as sources.

According to the conclusion of the second book, 1 and 2 Kings were written/compiled after Jehoiakim’s release from prison in 562 B.C. (2 Kings 25:27-30), but before the end of the Babylonian exile in 538 B.C.

31. 2 Kings

Author:

Refer to the preceding discussion of the book of 1 Kings.

When it was written:

Refer to the preceding discussion of the book of 1 Kings.

32. Haggai

Author:

The prophet Haggai, according to most scholars, wrote this book (Haggai 1:1).

When it was written:

Between August and December of 520 B.C., Haggai delivered his prophecies. These dates reveal a special relationship between the books of Haggai and Zechariah: these prophets lived at the same time. They prophesied in alternate months of the same year on one occasion.

33. Zechariah

Author:

The prophecies of Zechariah, son of Berechiah, are contained in the book (Zechariah 1:1). Many scholars agree with the long-held belief that he wrote this book.

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Scholars have argued since the seventeenth century that he only wrote the first eight chapters. They claim that chapters 9–11 were written later by a second author, and chapters 12–14 were written by a third unknown author. Modern scholars are divided on the subject.

When it was written:

The first eight chapters were dated: the messages were delivered between the years 520 and 518 B.C. The rest of the book, according to most scholars, was written later in Zechariah’s life, between 500 and 470 B.C. Those who believe two other authors wrote the final six chapters believe the book was completed around 160 B.C.

Book #34: 1 Chronicles

Author:

The first and second books of Chronicles are anonymous. The priest Ezra, according to tradition, wrote Chronicles (the division into two books came much later), Ezra, and Nehemiah. Most academics agree with this assessment. They claim that the vocabulary, themes, and concerns in those books are similar. They also mention how the book of Ezra appears to pick up where the book of 2 Chronicles left off (compare 2 Chronicles 36:22-23 with Ezra 1:1-4).

Scholars who disagree with this viewpoint argue that there are numerous differences between Ezra-Nehemiah and Chronicles. However, those distinctions are easily explained by the fact that the author of 1 and 2 Chronicles may have compiled the books from a variety of external written sources. He could have quoted the original sources verbatim rather than rewriting them to fit his style.

When it was written:

Most scholars place the first and second Chronicles in the second half of the fifth century B.C., which corresponds to Ezra’s lifetime.

35. 2 Chronicles

Author:

Refer to the preceding discussion of the book of 1 Chronicles.

When it was written:

Refer to the preceding discussion of the book of 1 Chronicles.

36. Ezra

Author:

The Hebrew Bible considers Ezra and Nehemiah to be one book. Origen (A.D. 185-253) was the first to distinguish between them, calling them 1 Ezra and 2 Ezra.

The book of Ezra is unattributed. It contains some first-person narratives (Ezra 7:27-28; 8:15-34; 9:1-15), implying autobiographical content. Both books are traditionally attributed to Ezra the priest.

When it was written:

Scholars place the book of Ezra after 440 B.C.

37. Nehemiah

Author:

The “words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah” are recorded in the book of Nehemiah (Nehemiah 1:1 KJV). It contains first-person narratives, but Ezra the priest, not Nehemiah, is traditionally regarded as the author. In the Hebrew Bible, Ezra and Nehemiah are combined into one book called Ezra.

When it was written:

Scholars place the book of Nehemiah after 430 B.C.

38. Esther

Author:

The author is not mentioned in the book. Scholars can only confirm that the author is a Jew who is familiar with Persian customs, but his identity remains unknown.

When it was written:

Most scholars agree that the book was written between 460 B.C., when the events depicted in the book occurred, and 350 B.C., when Greece conquered the Persian Empire.

39. Malachi

Author:

There are two major hypotheses regarding the authorship of this book:

According to some scholars, the word “Malachi” in Malachi 1:1, which means “my messenger,” is not a proper name. As a result, it does not refer to a specific prophet, but rather to an unknown “messenger.”

Other scholars contend that the grammatical construction in Malachi 1:1 indicates that the prophet’s given name was Malachi.

When it was written:

Scholars date Malachi to the time of Ezra and Nehemiah, between 450 and 430 B.C., based on textual clues.

40. Galatians

Author:

The author introduces himself as Paul, the apostle (Galatians 1:1). This author shares numerous personal experiences that prove Paul’s authorship.

When it was written:

Scholars propose three options:

Most scholars agree that Paul wrote this letter to the South Galatians in A.D. 48-49 while in Syrian Antioch. In this case, Galatians would be Paul’s first letter, the first one written in chronological order.

According to other scholars, Paul was in Syrian Antioch or Corinth when he wrote the letter to the South Galatians between A.D. 51 and 53.

Another group of scholars believes Paul wrote this letter to the North Galatians between A.D. 53 and A.D. 57.

41. 1 Thessalonians 

Author:

Despite the fact that Silas and Timothy are mentioned as co-senders in 1 Thessalonians 1:1, most scholars identify Paul as the primary author because of his writing style and use of the pronoun “I” in 1 Thessalonians 2:18, 3:5, and 5:27. Early church writers, such as Marcion in A.D. 140, also support Paul’s authorship.

When it was written:

The letter was written between A.D. 50 and 52, during Paul’s ministry in Corinth.

42. 2 Thessalonians

Author:

Paul, Silas, and Timothy are the senders of 2 Thessalonians. However, the authorship of Paul is more debatable.

When compared to the first letter and other Pauline letters, some scholars note differences in vocabulary, literary style, and theology.

Those who believe Paul is the author argue that the differences are not significant enough to disprove the Pauline source.

When it was written:

Scholars believe that this letter was written soon after the first. As a result, they believe it was written between A.D. 51 and 52.

43. 1 Corinthians

Author:

This letter was written by the apostle Paul and co-sent by Sosthenes (1 Corinthians 1:1). Early church fathers, such as Clement of Rome, confirm Paul’s authorship (A.D. 96).

When it was written:

Based on the chronology of Paul’s travels in Acts, most scholars date this letter to A.D. 54-55. While in Ephesus, he wrote this letter (1 Corinthians 16:8).

44. 2 Corinthians

Author:

This letter was written by the apostle Paul, and Timothy was a co-sender (2 Corinthians 1:1). The authorship of Paul is undisputed.

Many modern scholars, however, argue that this epistle was not originally written as a single letter, but was compiled from several smaller letters.

When it was written:

Scholars believe this letter was written around the year 55.

45. Romans 

Author:

This letter was written by the apostle Paul (Romans 1:1). There has been no serious disagreement on this point.

When it was written:

Although some scholars disagree, the majority of them place the date of this letter around A.D. 57.

46. Mark

Author:

Despite the fact that the book does not name its author, Christian tradition and scholars agree that it was written by John Mark (Acts 12:12, 25; 15:37, Colossians 4:10), or simply Mark, his Greek name.

The most important evidence comes from Papias, an early church father (around A.D. 125). He cited another church father, John the Elder (circa A.D. 90), who claimed that Mark was Peter’s close associate (1 Peter 5:13), from whom he received the teachings for this book.

When it was written:

Most scholars believe Mark wrote this gospel while Peter was still alive, and that it was written between the late A.D. 50s and early A.D. 60s.

47.  James

Author:

“James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,” the author says (James 1:1 KJV). In the New Testament, there are a few people named James:

One of the Twelve disciples, son of Zebedee and brother of John (Mark 1:19, 3:17).

Alphaeus’ son and one of the Twelve (Mark 3:18).

Judas’s father or brother (Luke 6:16, Acts 1:13).

Jesus’ younger brother (Galatians 1:19).

Scholars believe that the son of Zebedee is unlikely to be the author of this epistle because he died too young, around 44 A.D. (Acts 12:2).

Scholars believe that he was a well-known leader because of the simple introduction and implied authority of the author. The brother of Jesus is the best match among these key characters. He was a leader in the Jerusalem church (Acts 12:17, 15:13, 21:18), and he was most likely the same person mentioned in 1 Corinthians 15:7, Galatians 2:9, and Jude 1:1.

When it was written:

Most scholars place the letter in the early 1960s. Some scholars, however, believe that textual clues point to an earlier date, possibly before A.D. 50. They all agree that this was the first of the New Testament’s general letters to be written.

48. Ephesians

Author:

Most scholars agree that this letter was written by the apostle Paul. He identified himself as the author (Ephesians 1:1 and 3:1), and he mentions personal experiences that correspond to known events in Paul’s life (Ephesians 3:1-13, 4:1, 6:19-20).

Those who dispute Pauline authorship point to the letter’s writing style, which they claim differs from other known Pauline letters.

When it was written:

Scholars believe Paul wrote the letter between A.D. 60 and 62, while imprisoned in Rome (Ephesians 3:1; 4:1; 6:20). Those who dispute Paul’s authorship place the letter between A.D. 70 and 90.

49. Philippians

Author:

The apostle Paul’s authorship is widely acknowledged (Philippians 1:1).

Some scholars argue that this letter was a compilation of several letters written by the apostle Paul to the Philippians, but most disagree.

Furthermore, some scholars, such as H. Koester, question the origin of the “hymn” in Philippians 2:5-11, claiming that Paul may have quoted an earlier work.

When it was written:

There isn’t much information that can help pinpoint when Paul wrote this letter. We know he was imprisoned (Philippians 1:13), so there are a few possibilities depending on where he was at the time he wrote it:

Between A.D. 60 and 62, Rome.

Ephesus: between the years of 54 and 57 A.D.

Corinth: around the year 50.

Between the years 57 and 60, Caesarea was founded.

The reference to “Caesar’s household” (Philippians 4:22 KJV) by most scholars indicates that Paul was most likely in Rome, though Caesarea is also a possibility.

50. Colossians

Author:

This letter is attributed to the apostle Paul (Colossians 1:1, 1:23, 4:18), with Timothy serving as a co-sender (Colossians 1:1).

Some contemporary scholars argue that the language and some aspects of theology are inconsistent with Paul’s other letters.

Other scholars support Paul’s authorship. They also claim that the letter is too short to prove Paul didn’t write it based solely on stylistic differences.

When it was written:

Most scholars believe Paul wrote this letter while imprisoned, most likely in Rome (Caesarea is another possibility) around the year A.D. 60.

51. Philemon

Author:

Contemporary scholars agree that this letter was written by the apostle Paul (Philemon 1:1). Timothy is mentioned as a co-sender by Paul (Philemon 1:1).

When it was written:

Paul wrote this letter while imprisoned (Philemon 1:1), most likely in Rome. As a result, most scholars believe it was around A.D. 60.

52. Matthew

Author:

Although no information about the author is given in the book, early church writers unanimously attribute it to Matthew, also known as Levi, one of the 12 apostles (Matthew 9:9-13).

The synoptic gospels are named after the similarities between the gospels of Mark, Matthew, and Luke. Scholars have proposed a few theories to explain the similarities.

Scholars generally believe that Matthew and Luke used Mark and an unknown source known as “Q” (from the German word Quelle, which means “source”) as primary sources to write their own gospel accounts. However, there is no evidence that this source “Q” exists.

Some modern scholars have questioned Matthew’s authorship as a result of this theory. They question, among other things, why would Matthew, an eyewitness, use a source from someone who wasn’t an eyewitness?

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Those who defend Matthew’s authorship argue that Matthew may have used Mark’s gospel because of Peter’s authority.

When it was written:

The dating of Matthew’s gospel has been much debated. Some scholars believe it was written in the 1950s or 1960s, prior to the fall of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. Others argue that it happened later, between A.D. 70 and 80.

53: Luke

Author:

This book is unattributed, but evidence from early church writers and manuscripts points to Luke as the author. The gospel of Luke and the book of Acts are considered a two-volume document written by Luke to record the life of Jesus, the early church, and Paul. The beginnings of Luke 1:1-4 and Acts 1:1-2 make it clear that both books were written by the same author.

Although Luke was not an eyewitness, he makes it clear in the first four verses of this book that he conducted a thorough investigation of the facts and relied on eyewitness accounts in his research (Luke 1:1-4).

Modern scholars believe Luke based his work on the gospel of Mark and an unknown source known as “Q.” (refer to the discussion of the gospel of Matthew above for more information about this theory and the synoptic gospels). The lack of external evidence calls this theory into question.

When it was written:

Most scholars agree that Luke wrote his gospel after Mark’s had already been published. They believe Luke began writing his gospel after Paul had been imprisoned but before he was sentenced in Rome. They date Luke’s gospel to A.D. 61-62 based on these assumptions.

54. Acts of the Apostles

Author:

This is the only historical book in the New Testament, which is unusual given the genre. Although it is an anonymous book, all known evidence from the early church, dating back to the second century, points to Luke as the author. Few academics challenge this tradition. Luke was a physician (Colossians 4:14), indicating that he was well-educated, and he was a companion of the apostle Paul (2 Timothy 4:11, Philemon 1:24). Scholars conclude that Luke was an associate of Paul based on the “we” passages in Acts (16:9-17, 20:5-15, 21:1-18, and 27:1-28:16), which is another argument in favor of Luke’s authorship.

When it was written:

The possible dates for the writing of this book range from A.D. 62, when the last event recorded, to the middle of the second century, when the book was first mentioned.

Most scholars believe the book was written around A.D. 62 because it makes no mention of Paul’s martyrdom (between A.D. 64 and 67) or the severe persecution that began under Emperor Nero in A.D. 64.

55. 1 Peter

Author:

The author introduces himself as Peter, a disciple of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:1). The evidence from early church writers is compelling that it was written by the apostle Peter. Silas, according to the author, assisted him in writing the letter (1 Peter 5:12).

When it was written:

Most scholars believe Peter wrote this letter between A.D. 64 and 68, shortly before his martyrdom under Emperor Nero, but not before his arrival in Rome in the early 1960s. A reasonable date would be between A.D. 62 and 63.

56. Titus

Author:

According to Church tradition, the apostle Paul wrote this letter (Titus 1:1). Some modern scholars have questioned Paul’s authorship, but others argue that the arguments are insufficient.

When it was written:

Most scholars believe Paul wrote this letter after his release from prison in Rome, between A.D. 63 and 65, around the same time he wrote 1 Timothy.

57. 1 Timothy

Author:

According to Christian tradition and modern scholars, the apostle Paul wrote this letter to his disciple Timothy (1 Timothy 1:1-2).

Based on the writing style, some contemporary scholars question the authorship of all pastoral letters (1 and 2 Timothy and Titus). Most scholars argue that the evidence presented by critics is insufficient to call Paul’s authorship into question.

When it was written:

The letter contains no significant evidence as to when it was written. Most scholars believe Paul wrote it between A.D. 63 and 65, after his release from prison in Rome.

58. 2 Timothy

Author:

Tradition holds that, like 1 Timothy, the apostle Paul wrote this letter to his disciple Timothy (2 Timothy 1:1-2) while contemplating his death (2 Timothy 4:6–8).

The style of the letter has led some contemporary scholars to question Pauline authorship, but others argue that there isn’t enough evidence to doubt Paul’s authorship.

When it was written:

Eusebius assigned the year of Paul’s martyrdom to A.D. 67. Scholars believe Paul wrote this letter around a year before that, in A.D. 66.

According to some modern scholars, Paul was executed between A.D. 64 and 65, so the letter was written shortly before that time.

59. 2 Peter

Author:

This letter’s author introduces himself as “Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:1 KJV). However, there is no confirmation of this from the early church. Until Origen’s time, this letter was not associated with Peter (A.D. 185-253).

Some scholars doubt Peter’s authorship, citing the difference in style between 2 Peter and 1 Peter. Those who support Peter’s authorship argue that the differences can be explained by the fact that Silas isn’t mentioned as a helper in writing the letter here, which may have influenced the style of the first letter.

When it was written:

Peter was martyred between A.D. 64 and A.D. 68, during the reign of Emperor Nero. As a result, scholars believe the letter was written shortly before his death, around A.D. 65.

60. Hebrews

Author:

Hebrews is a private letter. The vast majority of modern scholars reject the theory that it was written by Paul. Among other things, Hebrews 2:3 indicates that the author received the gospel from someone else, whereas Paul stated that he received it from the Lord Himself (Galatians 1:11-17).

Many names have been proposed over the years, including Luke, Barnabas, Clement of Rome, Apollos, Priscilla, Silas, Epaphras, and Timothy. However, there is no compelling evidence to support any of them.

When it was written:

Scholars believe Hebrews was written prior to the fall of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. As a result, they believe it was written between A.D. 60 and 70.

61. Jude

Author:

“Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James,” the author of Jude introduced himself (Jude 1:1 KJV). The only Jude (or Judas) brother of James in the Christian Bible was the Lord’s brother (Mark 6:3). This conclusion is consistent with early church tradition.

When it was written:

According to some scholars, 2 Peter borrowed content from this letter. If that’s the case, it had to be written before 2 Peter. As a result, scholars believe that this letter was written no later than A.D. 68. Of course, the borrowing could have happened in the opposite direction.

62. John

Author:

The author of this gospel is unknown, but we do know that he was a disciple of Jesus and a witness to the events he describes. He also referred to himself as “the disciple whom Jesus loved” (John 21:20 KJV). According to early church tradition, the author is the apostle John, son of Zebedee.

When it was written:

Despite being one of the first books in the New Testament, most scholars believe it was written at the end. They place it around A.D. 85, after the other three gospels and the majority of the epistles had already been written. Others argue that because John did not use the other gospels, he could have written it much earlier. These scholars propose a date prior to the fall of Jerusalem (A.D. 70), possibly as early as the 1950s. Scholars’ estimates range from A.D. 55 to 95, taking into account all possibilities.

63. 1 John

Author:

The author does not give his or her name. There are so many similarities between this letter and the gospel of John that scholars believe they were written by the same person. A few scholars have pointed out some differences, but the similarities far outnumber the differences. In addition, the author stated in 1 John 1:1-3 that he was an eyewitness to Jesus’ ministry. He confirmed that he had heard, seen, and touched Jesus.

Early church fathers such as Irenaeus, Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian, and Origen all agree that the letters known as 1, 2, and 3 John were written by the apostle John. Based on this and other evidence, most scholars agree that the three letters were written by the apostle John.

When it was written:

Scholars date the three letters of John based on textual clues because none of them state when they were written. For example, the author addresses his readers as “children,” implying that he is an elder. The first book of the New Testament confronts an early form of Gnosticism, a second-century heresy.

Scholars estimate that the three letters of John were written near the end of the first century, between A.D. 85 and 95, based on these and other clues.

64. 2 John

Author:

The author simply refers to himself as “the elder” (2 John 1:1 KJV). According to legend, the apostle John wrote this letter. Scholars see no reason to doubt John’s authorship, given the letter’s similarities to 1 John and the gospel of John. For more information, see the discussion of 1 John above.

When it was written:

This letter was most likely written at the same time as 1 John. For more information, see the discussion of 1 John above.

65. 3 John

Author:

The author, like in 2 John, introduces himself as “the elder” (3 John 1:1 KJV). According to Christian tradition, the apostle John also wrote the third letter. Scholars agree on John’s authorship because of similarities to 1 and 2 John. For more information, see the discussion of 1 John above.

This is the Bible’s shortest book, with only 219 words in the original Greek language.

When it was written:

This letter was most likely written around the same time as John 1 and 2. For more information, see the discussion of 1 John above.

66. Revelation

Author:

The book of Revelation is commonly associated with Christ’s second coming and the end times. It is the only prophecy book in the New Testament in terms of literary genre.

The author simply refers to himself as “his servant John” in the book (Revelation 1:1 KJV). This book was written by the apostle John, according to Church tradition.

When it was written:

The book of Revelation was the final book written in the Bible. Based on a quote by Irenaeus (from “Against Heresies,” 5.30.3), an early church father, who said that John received this vision near the end of Domitian’s reign, most scholars date it to A.D. 95-96.

Conclusion

Take your time reading through this Bible timeline. A chronological Bible reading plan is the best way to understand the historical order of well-known Bible passages and the entire biblical history, among other Bible reading plans. You can use the information in this article to go deeper into the Lord’s Word and grow in your knowledge of God through the Holy Spirit as you read the Bible.

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