Alphabetize the Books of the Bible

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Introduction: Alphabetize the Books of the Bible

Why do this you ask? In order to save time, especially when in church, it is so much easier to have an alphabetized list of the books of the Bible in order to find that chapter quickly. To do this it dawned on me to put them in alphabetical order. Hence this Instructable. Would very much like comments.., do you find this useful? Thanks.

Step 1: Gather Your Bibles at Your Computer Workplace.

I have several Bibles, so wanted to do them all.

Step 2: Open to the Contents Page

You need to find your bible's listing of the chapters. Each bible is arranged differently, so of course you you will need to treat each one individually.

Step 3: Type the Books of the Bible in the Program of Your Choice.

I used Word for the shown alphabetized listings. You can also use excel, access, or any program that has the alphabetizing function. I was surprised to find that Microsoft Works does not allow you to alphabetize lists. Key in the chapters with their page number, sort and save.

Step 4: That's It!

Now print and trim your new list of books of the Bible to a size that fits just inside the front cover of the Book. I find this a very big help in rapidly finding the chapter I want. No more "lapses" and/or frustration. Hope this adds to your ease and enjoyment of reading/studying the Bible. This can be taped in or just placed without any tape if you choose.

Step 5: A Surprise for Me!

I knew that I had an old Bible that was my mothers. So I got it off the shelf, opened it up and found that this Bible had the books alphabetized on the first page! I had read this version many times, over the years, but did not remember this fact. I wonder why the old time publishers would do this and the modern day printers do not? Hmmmmmm...point to ponder.

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19 Comments

Another way to make a Bible index is to use a color printer to make stripes ( using 5-7 different colors) about 14-20 point size depending on the size of the Bible on a sheet of lable paper. Type the names in alphabetical order. I would make one for the Old Testament and one for the New Testament. Place the list on the title page for each Testament with about 1/4 inch sticking out to fold over. Use 3/4 inch long stripes to mark the beginning of each book. I install the tabs folded over flush with the edge to avoid tabs sticking out and possibly snagging. Installation may be tedious, but the results are time saving. Even If I had the order of the books memorized, who can remember which of the 1500 pages each book begins on.
I use this system for quick access to the chapters in my textbooks, especially for humanity classes. Humanity professors often teach the material in their own order. Someday I'll have a color printer so that make my labels by hand.


Why don't you just memorize the books in order?

that's what I did. but I need to work on it again... for some reason when I recite them I get stuck in the middle of the new testament and want to keep going from leviticus. it's an endless loop.

I learned the books of the Bible in third grade with this song- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EuNwryJeaaE&feature=related

I think an alphabetical listing of the biblical books is very helpful for those times when a person's brain checks out and leaves him. It happens to all of us. I have some newer Bibles that do also include an alphabetized list, so it was not just the older one from your mother that has provided this.

Mostly it helps when you just need that quote or reference and wont bother to say all the rhymes to remember what order they're in.

Tis is actually a good idea. Most of us (raised in church) memorize them in order. But as time goes by, especially with books we don't use as much, inevitably we will occasionally draw a blank. I've been a minister for nearly 20 years, and I still have "brain cramps" when it comes to getting all the "minor prophets" in order. Alphabetizing is a good solution!

That's all well and good, but what about writing an alphabetical index to go in the back...? L

I assume you mean a topical index for finding passages dealing with certain themes. Some publishers do offer such things in their editions. Those I have seen are usually a guide to substantive discussions in study notes. Even then, I have found it useful to underline or highlight the note references to notes I found most useful. This worked out best for me when I read the whole Bible and study notes together, no matter how long it took me to do it. When I read a really good note I might want to find later, I highlighted the reference in the index to the notes. If there was a really good note, but no reference to it in the index to the notes, I wrote one it myself where I would have expected to find it in the list. Some Bibles also have a junior concordance in the back. If they are not too abbreviated, they can be useful for finding certain things. I have some Bibles in German. I also have a German friend. She would not buy a Bible if it does not have an encyclopedic section in the back that functions like a small Bible dictionary with information on places, people, and biblical themes. From what use I have given those appendices, they are quite good and helpful.

Yes, I meant that I would be impressed if someone had taken the time to 'do' both ends of the book. When I was at school they made us learn the books like multiplication tables, well they tried anyway. L