What language was the original Bible written in? 

Think of the Bible as a library, not as a single document. Its constituent books were authored, and edited, over a period of many centuries, and originate from many countries. They were written in three languages:


1. Hebrew
This is the language of 99% of the Old Testament. And since about three quarters of the entire Bible is the Old Testament, this makes Hebrew the principal language of scripture.

2. Aramaic
1% of the Old Testament (271 verses out of about 23,000). Aramaic is closely related to Hebrew, and uses the same writing system. It is about as close to Hebrew as Spanish is to Italian.

Portions of the O.T. in Aramaic: Genesis 31:47; Jeremiah 10:11; Ezra 4:8-6:18, 7:12-26; Daniel 2:4-7:28. One example is "Mene' mene' teqel upharsin" -- the "writing on the wall" of Daniel 5:25.

In the N.T., Maranatha, Golgotha, Gethsemane, Gabbatha, Hakeldama, Hosanna, and Ephphatha, are a few of the better-known words.

3. Greek
This is the language of 100% of the New Testament.

To see what the three original languages of the Bible look like (samples of familiar Bible passages), click here.