Psalms 118: The Middle Chapter of the Bible

Fun Facts Regarding the Middle Chapter of the Bible

Bible study can be more fun if you break up your study with some fun trivia. Do you know, for example, what Bible chapter and verse is at the very center of the Bible?  Here's a clue in the first few words of the center chapter: 

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his love endures forever.

Let Israel say:
His love endures forever.”
Let the house of Aaron say:
“His love endures forever.”
Let those who fear the Lord say:
“His love endures forever.”

When hard pressed, I cried to the Lord;
he brought me into a spacious place.

The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid.
What can mere mortals do to me?

The Lord is with me; he is my helper.
I look in triumph on my enemies.

It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in humans.

It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in princes.

Psalms 118

The fact can be argued depending on what Bible version you are using, but by most reckoning, the very center of the Bible when measured by chapter count is Psalms 118 (see note below). Here are some other fun facts surrounding Psalm 118:

  • The longest chapter of the Bible falls just after this center chapter-- Psalm 119.
  • The shortest chapter of the Bible falls just after this center chapter-- Psalm 117.
  • There are exactly 594 chapters before Psalm 118, and exactly 594 chapters after it.  When you add the number of chapters before Psalms 118 and those after, the sum is 1,118. And the verse at the very center of the Bible is Psalms 118:8.  

The Center Verse

Psalm 118:8 - "It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man." (NIV)

This central verse of the Bible reminds believers to ask the question, "Are you centered in your trust in God?: It is a particular verse that reminds Christians to trust in God over trusting in themselves or other people.

As Christians understand, God consistently provides for us and His grace is given to us freely. Even in the most difficult times, we should center ourselves by trusting in God. He is there making us strong, giving us joy, and carrying us when life weighs heavily on us.

A Note

While fun facts like these draw our attention to certain verses, the "center of the Bible" statistics are not applicable to every version of the Bible.

Why not?  Catholics use one version of the Bible, and Hebrews use another. Some experts have calculated Psalm 117 as the center of the King James Version of the Bible, while others state that there is no central verse of the Bible due to an even number of verses.