How is the Bible Organized?
The canon of the Christian Protestant Bible consists of 66 books. These books are divided into two sections: The Old Testament and the New Testament. This division exists because of 2 distinct covenants (contracts) between God and mankind.
The Old Testament describes the fall of mankind, the advent of Mosaic Law, and the time frame of the Jews living under the law up to the time of Jesus Christ. The Old Testament was originally written in Hebrew (the Jewish language) and it is the equivalent to the Hebrew Bible (Tanakh).
The Old Testament consists of 39 books which are typically grouped into 5 categories:
- The Pentateuch (5 books of Moses)
- Books of History
- Books of Wisdom & Poetry
- Major Prophets (major in length)
- Minor Prophets (minor in length)
The New Testament only exists in Christianity. It was originally written in Greek; the common language of the time. The New Testament describes the life of Jesus Christ, the advent of a new covenant between God and mankind through Jesus fulfilling the law, and the time of the early church. Jesus is the mediator of a better covenant, which is established upon better promises (Hebrews 8:6) than the Old Covenant (Mosaic Law).
The New Testament consists of 27 books which may be grouped into 5 categories:
- The Gospels
- Acts of the Apostles
- Pauline Epistles
- General Epistles
- Apocalyptic (End Time Prophesy)