Daily Archives: 27th May 2016

“Jesus wept” (John 11:35) isn’t the shortest verse in the Bible!!

I was messing around with some regular expressions, or regex, today, (the nerdy types will understand!) to create a hidden word Bible quiz for the site and thought it would be fun to do a bit of word analysis on the text of the KJV – as you do!

I was looking at verse lengths, and you may know there are actually two verses that only have two words. Everyone knows about “Jesus wept” (John 11:35) but did you know that 1 Thessalonians 5:16 also only has two words and reads “Rejoice evermore”? No-one really ever mentions that one though!

John 11:35 is indeed the shortest verse as it contains less characters, but only if we are considering the KJV or other English translations. What I didn’t know until just a few moments ago is that when looking at the original Greek text, 1 Thessalonians 5:16 is actually the shortest verse containing two words and 14 characters, whereas John 11:35 is 3 words and 16 characters! There’s my something new learned for today.

Joh 11:35  ἐδάκρυσεν ὁ ᾿Ιησοῦς.

1Th 5:16  Πάντοτε χαίρετε,

But then, that might not be the shortest verse either. Depending on where you divide the verse in the Greek, Luke 20:30 might be even shorter at only 3 words and 12 characters. The Greek text I use doesn’t bear this out, but some modern translations split the verses differently and reads simply “and the second”…

Luk 20:30  καὶ ἔλαβεν ὁ δεύτερος τὴν γυναίκα, καὶ οὗτος ἀπέθανεν ἄτεκνος·

Job 3:2 also has a shout at being the shortest coming in at 14 characters and 3 words in the Hebrew.

So, what do ya know?! It’s only trivia at the end of the day, but don’t believe everything you hear!

Did you also know that Psalm 118:8 isn’t the middle verse and there are not 365 “do not fear / be afraid” verses in the Bible either?

The Top 50 Most Mentioned Names in the Bible

You may wonder which names are the most mentioned in the Bible. We’ve all heard of Jesus, so he’s probably pretty high up the list, and you’d be right. Here are the top 50, and remember some people had more than one name like Jacob who was also called Israel. How you decide which are the most common names in the Bible does depend a few factors so every list isn’t the exactly the same.

Name First Reference Times
God Genesis 1:1 4411
Jacob Genesis 32:28 2948
David Ruth 4:17 1139
Jesus Matthew 1:23 983
Moses Exodus 2:10 848
Judah Matthew 2:6 819
Saul 1 Samuel 9:2 398
Aaron Exodus 4:14 350
Abram Genesis 17:5 311
Solomon 2 Samuel 12:25 307
Joseph Genesis 30:24 220
Simon John 1:42 219
Joshua Deuteronomy 32:44 209
Saul Acts 14:12 189
Esau Genesis 25:30 186
Ephraim Genesis 41:52 175
Moab Genesis 19:37 168
Benoni Genesis 35:18 163
Samuel 1 Samuel 1:20 143
Joab 1 Samuel 26:6 141
Jeremiah 2 Chronicles 35:25 138
Isaac Genesis 17:19 132
Hezekiah Matthew 1:9 127
Manasseh Genesis 41:51 121
Absalom 1 Kings 15:2 111
Elijah Matthew 11:14 98
Jonathan 1 Samuel 13:2 97
Ahab 1 Kings 16:28 92
John Matthew 3:1 92
Nebuchadnezzar 2 Kings 24:1 91
Canaan Genesis 9:18 91
Jeroboam 1 Kings 11:26 90
Pharaoh Genesis 37:36 90
Daniel Daniel 1:7 90
Jehoshaphat 2 Kings 8:16 79
Reuben Genesis 29:32 74
Dan Genesis 30:6 71
Levi Genesis 29:34 67
Baal Numbers 22:41 66
Eleazar Exodus 6:23 63
Balaam Numbers 22:5 63
Abner 1 Samuel 14:50 63
Elisha Luke 4:27 59
Sarai Hebrews 11:11 59
Asa 1 Kings 15:8 59
Job Job 1:1 59
Mordecai Esther 2:5 58
Gad Genesis 30:11 58
Hadassah Esther 2:7 57