When was the
Old Testament written?

Who wrote the books of the Old Testament and when did they do it? As ORIGINALLY inspired it was divided into three major divisions. The first division was the Law, the second was the Prophets, and the third was the Writings. It was written from approximately the 1660s B.C. to the 400s B.C. The original canonized version contained twenty-two books, one for each letter of the Hebrew alphabet.

When the first five books of the Old Testament are carefully examined, they demonstrate that what was written by Moses were the actual words of the LORD God. Moses wrote nothing on his own initiative, but only conveyed the words God commanded him to write.

Prior to his death Moses wrote the book of Deuteronomy. This finalized the Pentateuch or first five books of the Law. He then gave the original scrolls of the Law, also called autographs, to the priests to be placed in special sleeves attached to the side of the Ark of the Covenant.

Later, God used priests such as Samuel, Jeremiah and Ezekiel, descendants of Aaron, to pen other books of the Old Testament. What they had created was 'laid up before the Lord.' When Samuel proclaimed the amended covenant for the children of Israel, after God granted their request for a king, he 'wrote it in a book (scroll) and laid it up before the Lord.' (1Samuel 10:25).

The writings of other men who were not priests or Levites - such as King David and Solomon, of the tribe of Judah, and many of the prophets - were also submitted to the priesthood to be 'laid up before the Lord' and eventually included in the Old Testament. After David authored his first psalm he gave it to Asaph the priest, who was in charge of the Ark of the Covenant when David brought it to Jerusalem..

Thus, important written accounts became part of the prophets, Psalms and historical writings. Ultimately, such writings were officially made a permanent part of the Word of God when Ezra the priest - assisted by the priests and Levites of the Great Assembly or Synagogue - completed the final editing and canonization of the Old Testament Scriptures in the late fifth century B.C.

Map showing
where books of
the Bible authored
Important people
in Old Testament
Map of
Important Cities
in Ancient Israel
List of prophetic
world empires
from Babylon to
the Beast Power!
Easily learn story
flow of the Bible!


Dates of Old Testament Books

Date Written
  Job Job
1445 to 1405
  Genesis, Exodus,
Leviticus, Numbers,
1067 to 1050
 Joshua, Judges Samuel
 Ruth Ruth
1010 to 970
  Psalms 1 to 71
Psalms 107 to 119
Psalms 135 to 150
1010 to 970
 Psalms 73 to 88
Psalms 90 to 106
 Davidic priests
970 to 930
  Psalm 72
Proverbs 1 to 24
Song of Solomon
809 to 757
(first part only)
  Proverbs 30 For Agur
  Proverbs 31 For King Lemuel
  Jonah Jonah
  Amos Amos
796 to 719
  Hosea Hosea
757 to 696
  1Samuel, 2Samuel
1Kings, Isaiah
740 to 711
  Micah Micah
715 to 686
  Psalms 120 to 134 Hezekiah
715 to 686
 Proverbs 25 to 29 For Hezekiah
  Nahum Nahum
626 to 585
2Kings (last part only),
Psalm 89
  Habakkuk Habakkuk
  Zephaniah Zephaniah
608 to 586
  Lamentations Jeremiah
605 to 530
  Daniel Daniel
597 to 570
  Ezekiel Ezekiel
595 to 585
  Joel Joel
  Obadiah Obadiah
  Haggai Haggai
520 to 518
  Zechariah Zechariah
c. 480
  Esther Esther, Mordecai
c. 455
2Chronicles, Ezra
c. 430
  Nehemiah Nehemiah
c. 400
  Malachi Malachi
Additional Study Materials
When was the
New Testament written?

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