Memorize the Books of the New Testament Bible: Hebrews to Revelation

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Want to memorize the books of the Bible? Here’s a helpful way to memorize the Book of Hebrews through the Book of Revelation.

Letters to the Church

Unlike the 13 Pauline Epistles, the General or “Catholic” Epistles of the Bible, so-called because they are not addressed to a specific congregation, are given to the general or “catholic” church at large by the various authors under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The New Testament Book of Revelation is in a category by itself, similar to the Book of Acts. It is the only book of prophecy in the New Testament “canon” (the collection of books considered by the Church to be Scripture or truly inspired by God). The Book of Revelation has been included under the category of the General Epistles which were written for the church in general.

“Knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone’s own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Pet 1:20-21).

The General Epistles

These books are given in their proper order and are to be memorized in the following order:

1 Peter
2 Peter
1 John
2 John
3 John

While there are a total of nine books, three of the nine titles repeat themselves. For memory purposes (2nd Peter; 2nd and 3rd John), so this leaves only six books to be learned by heart.

“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Tim 3:16).

Rhyme to Memorize

Here are some of the best ways to memorizing the New Testament books in order:

Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John wrote about the life of the Lord; Rome, Corinth, Galatian, Ephesus hear what Philippians, Colossians, Thessalonians revere: Timothy, Titus Philemon precede the Epistle which Hebrews most gratefully read; James, Peter, and John, with the short letter Jude, the rounds of Divine Revelation conclude.”

Memorization with Acrostics

Another simple method of learning the order of the New Testament books is to form an acrostic. An acrostic takes the first letter of each of the words to form a memorable, and sometimes silly phrase. The letters we will work with to form an acrostic are H-J-P-J-J-R.

Note that we will not assign duplicate books a place in the following acrostics. We should remember that there are three books of John and note that there are three “J’s” in the acrostic. Here are some suggested acrostics for the General Epistles of Hebrews to Revelation to get you started:

Hebrews Jousters Proudly Jostle Jezebel’s Ribs

Hairy Jailers Pranked John’s Jumpy Rhino

Holy Jumping Peanut Jam — Just Relax!

“Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, 2but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world” (Heb 1:1-2).

The best method of producing memorable acrostics is to produce your own that are easy to remember or seem silly and memorable to you. To reinforce your learning, sketch or draw out the acrostic to help you visualize the phrase, which will help you to remember the acrostic, and then test yourself and see if you can fill in all books between Hebrews and Revelation.

New Testament Books

Another easy mnemonic device to remember the New Testament books is to associate or “link” them together. To link the New Testament Epistles together, associate one book to another in your mind’s eye by forming absurd mental pictures or images. Substitute words and images will be given for each of the Epistles to facilitate associating the books together.

Here are the substitute words and symbols for each of the nine Epistles:

Hebrews: sounds like “He brews,” picture a man brewing coffee dressed like a Hebrew.

James: sounds like “Jaws,” imagine the shark “Jaws” or a human jaw bone.

Peter: sounds like “Pay dirt,” imagine a miner hitting “pay dirt” of gold or oil.

John: picture someone you know named “John,” or picture a “Johnny” gown as worn by hospital patients.

Jude: imagine a large crowd of Orthodox Jews (sounds like “Jew”).

Revelation: picture the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

Now, link these images, or the images you have created, one to another. Below are recommendations for the suggested substitute words and images that were given above.

Picture a man brewing coffee (Hebrews), and “Jaws” (James) pops out of the coffee pot, biting the man on the head.

Vividly imagine “Jaws” (James) digging the ground with a pickaxe and striking oil (“pay dirt,” is a mnemonic for Peter) that gushes into the air.

Picture a man in a hospital gown, or “Johnny,” (John) going out to dig for “pay dirt” (Peter) with a pickaxe.

Vividly imagine a crowd of Orthodox Jews (Jude) all wear “johnny” gowns (John).

Picture four Orthodox Jews riding the Four Horses of the Apocalypse.

“Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 1:3).

Use the peg system to memorize the books of the Bible. Peg words are numbers that have been transformed into words by assigning the numbers 0-9 as phonetic consonant sounds. The peg words are then linked to the substitute words for the books of the Bible.

19. Tub to “He brews” (Hebrews);

20. Nose to “Jaws” (James);

21. Net to “Pay dirt” (1 Peter);

22. Nun to “Pay dirt” (2 Peter);

23. Name to “Johnny” (1 John);

24. Nero to “Johnny” (2 John);

25. Nail to “Johnny” (3 John);

26. Notch to “Orthodox Jews” (Jude);

27. Neck to Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (Revelation).

If you are learning the New Testament books as a continuation of the Old Testament peg list, here are the last peg words for the entire Bible:

58. Lava to “He brews” (Hebrews);

59. Lip to “Jaws” (James);

60. Cheese to “Pay dirt” (1 Peter);

61. Sheet to “Pay dirt” (2 Peter);

62. Chain to “Johnny” (1 John);

63. Chum to “Johnny” (2 John);

64. Cherry to “Johnny” (3 John);

65. Jail to “Orthodox Jews” (Jude);

66. Choo-choo to Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (Revelation).


Regardless of the method you use to memorize the books of the Old Testament and the New Testament, you will be enriched by knowing them by heart. It’s great to turn to “chapter and verse” and know how to get there quickly without finding an index. In time, it will become easier to find any book of the Bible, New or Old Testament. This helps a lot during church service sermons, Bible studies, Sunday school or Bible study groups.

Here is some related reading for you: Bible Verses for New Believers to Memorize and Study

Resource – Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), Crossway Bibles. (2007). ESV: Study Bible: English standard version. Wheaton, Ill: Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

About the Author: Nicholas H. Parker is a content editor at Bid for Writing. He used to manage the content team at the company he worked for. Currently, Nicholas writes articles to share his knowledge with others and obtain new skills. Besides, he is highly interested in the web design sphere.

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