The Longest Books of the Bible (By Chapters, Verses, Words)


There are 66 individual books in the Bible. There are 39 in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament. Many readers can read the shortest books in the Bible in 5 to 10 minutes. The longest book takes an average reader a few hours to complete. Many people want to know what book of the Bible is the longest.

The book of Psalms is the longest book of the Bible by total chapters, total verses, and the total number of words. Isaiah has the second most chapters. Genesis has the second most verses. Jeremiah has the second most words. Jeremiah has the third most chapters and verses. Ezekiel has the third most words.

What are the longest books of the New Testament? What authors wrote the most chapters, verses, and words of each Testament? What author wrote more words than are in the Psalms? Keep reading to learn more.

Also see How Many Verses Are In the Bible? to learn more.

Holy Bible
What is the longest New Testament book? See below

Longest Books of the Bible By Total Chapters: Top 25

At 150 chapters, Psalms more than doubles the second-longest book of the Bible with regard to the total number of chapters. Psalms is part of the wisdom literature of the Old Testament, as is #6 on the list, the book of Job.

Yet three out of the top five longest books by chapter are part of the prophetic literature of the Old Testament — Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel.

The first New Testament books on the list are the Gospel of Matthew and the book of Acts, which are tied at #14 with 28 total chapters. The Gospel of Luke is the next New Testament book on the list with 24 chapters followed by Revelation with 22. There are eight New Testament books in the Top 25 (including ties).

BookChaptersTestament
Psalms150Old
Isaiah66Old
Jeremiah52Old
Genesis50Old
Ezekiel48Old
Job42Old
Exodus40Old
Numbers36Old
2 Chronicles36Old
Deuteronomy34Old

Four of the five books of the Pentateuch — Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy — make the Top 10. Leviticus ranks #16 on the list (see below). 2 Chronicles is the only book in the section of Historical Books in the Old Testament to make the Top 10.

BookChaptersTestament
Proverbs31Old
1 Samuel31Old
1 Chronicles29Old
Matthew28New
Acts28New
Leviticus27Old
2 Kings25Old
2 Samuel24Old
Joshua24Old
Luke24New

Also see How to Study the Bible to learn more.

How do these rankings change when book-length is measured according to total verses and words? Are there books that have fewer total chapters, but more total verses and words? See below.

BookChaptersTestament
1 Kings22Old
Revelation22New
Judges21Old
John21New
Mark16New
1 Corinthians16New
Romans16New

Romans and 1 Corinthians are the only two epistles or letters in the Top 25. Paul is the author of both books. Some scholars speculate that letters were short because people initially had to carry them over long distances, which was easier to do if the scrolls were small.

What is the longest chapter in the Bible?

Psalm 119 is the longest chapter in the Bible. It contains 176 verses. Depending on the English translation, the chapter contains about 2,500 words.

What is the shortest chapter of the Bible?

Psalm 117:1 is the shortest chapter in the Bible. It contains two verses. They read: “O praise the Lord, all ye nations: praise him, all ye people. For his merciful kindness is great toward us: and the truth of the Lord endureth for ever. Praise ye the Lord.” (KJV)

Also see Why Does the Catholic Bible Have Extra Books? to learn more.

Book of Genesis
Job is 14 chapters longer than Matthew, but which book has more verses? See below

Longest Books of the Bible By Total Verses: Top 25

Psalms is the longest book of the Bible by total chapters and total verses. It has almost 1,000 more verses than the second-longest book, Genesis. While Genesis had the fourth most number of total chapters, it has the second most number of verses.

Isaiah had the second most number of chapters with 66, but it has the fourth-highest number of verses. Jeremiah finishes third on both lists.

Not one New Testament book is ranked in the Top 10 on the previous list, but on this one there are two. The Gospels of Luke and Matthew are ranked 8th and 9th, respectively.

BookVersesTestament
Psalms2,526Old
Genesis1,533Old
Jeremiah1,364Old
Isaiah1,291Old
Numbers1,289Old
Ezekiel1,271Old
Exodus1,213Old
Luke1,151New
Matthew1,071New
Job1,068Old

Also see Bible Reading Plans for several options.

Many New Testament books have more words per verse than Old Testament books. Consider that Matthew and Luke both have over 1,000 total verses. Matthew has 28 chapters and Luke has 24.

Job follows them on the list, because it has three fewer verses than Matthew, and 103 fewer than Luke. Yet Job is 42 chapters long.

BookVersesTestament
Acts1,006New
Deuteronomy959Old
1 Chronicles943Old
Proverbs915Old
John879New
Leviticus859Old
1 Kings817Old
1 Samuel810Old
2 Chronciles821Old
2 Kings719Old

Total chapters and total verses are common ways to measure the length of biblical books, but the total number of words is most accurate. See the 25 longest books of the Bible by total words below.

BookVersesTestament
2 Samuel695Old
Mark678New
Joshua658Old
Judges618Old
Romans433New

What is the longest verse in the Bible?

Esther 8:9 is the longest verse in English Bibles with 90 words and 528 characters. The verse is only 43 words in the original Hebrew. Jeremiah 21:7 is second with 83 words and 441 characters. Ezekiel 46:9 is third with 81 verses and 377 characters.

What is the shortest verse in the Bible?

John 11:35 — “Jesus wept” — is the shortest verse in English Bible with two words and 9 letters. In the original Greek, John 11:35 is 16 letters. However, 1 Thessalonians 5:16 — “rejoice evermore” — while 15 letters in English is only 14 letters in Greek.

Also see What Book of the Bible Should I Read First? to learn more.

The book of Revelation
What book has one-third of Psalm’s total chapters but almost the same number of verses? See below

Longest Books of the Bible By Total Words: Top 25

Not surprisingly, Psalms is #1 again, but the margin between it and second place — the book of Jeremiah — may surprise people. Psalms has 98 more chapters than Jeremiah, but only 50 more words.

Some scholars claim that when detailed aspects of the original Hebrew language are considered (e.g. morphological units), Jeremiah is actually longer than the Psalms.

BookWordsTestament
Psalms42,704Old
Jeremiah42,654Old
Ezekiel39,401Old
Genesis38,262Old
Isaiah37,036Old
Numbers32,896Old
Exodus32,685Old
Deuteronomy28,352Old
2 Chronicles26,069Old
Luke25,640New

Although Luke only authored two books of the Bible — the Gospel of Luke and the book of Acts — he wrote 49,869 total words. Luke wrote more words than the Psalmists and Jeremiah. While Paul wrote 13 of the 27 New Testament books, his total word count falls short of Luke’s with 43,293.

BookWordsTestament
1 Samuel25,048Old
Leviticus24,541Old
1 Kings24,513Old
Acts24,229New
2 Kings23,517Old
Matthew23,343New
2 Samuel20,600Old
1 Chronicles20,365Old
Judges18,966Old
Joshua18,854Old
BookWordsTestament
John18,658New
Job18,098Old
Proverbs15,038Old
Mark14,949New
Revelation11,952New

How many words are popular English Bible translations?

  • King James Version (KJV): 788,280
  • NKJV: 770,430
  • ESV: 757,439
  • NIV: 726,109
  • CSB: 718,943
  • NLT: 747,891
  • NRSV: 895,891
  • NASB: 782,815

“Oftentimes in reading [the Bible], every word seemed to touch my heart. I felt a harmony between something in my heart, and those sweet and powerful words. I seemed often to see so much light exhibited in every sentence, and such refreshing food communicated, that I could not get along in reading; often dwelling long on one sentence, to see the wonders contained in it; yet almost every sentence seemed to be full of wonders.” – Jonathan Edwards

Also see Reading Order of the Bible to learn more.

Daniel Isaiah Joseph

Daniel's seminary degree is in Exegetical Theology. He was a pastor for 10 years. As a professor, he has taught Bible and theology courses at two Christian universities. Please see the About page for details.

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