A close-up of an open Bible, highlighting the word "truth" repeated multiple times on various pages, capturing the significance and frequency of its mention.

How Many Times Is ‘Truth’ Mentioned In The Bible?

The concept of truth is central to the Christian faith. After all, Jesus himself said ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life’ (John 14:6). But just how prevalent is this idea of truth in the text of the Bible?

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: the word ‘truth’ appears about 231 times in the Bible.

In this comprehensive article, we will analyze the usage of the word ‘truth’ throughout both the Old and New Testaments. We’ll look at some key verses that mention truth, examine how different Bible translations handle this term, and explore what we can learn about the biblical conception of truth.

Appearances of ‘Truth’ in the Old Testament

‘Truth’ in the Torah/Pentateuch

The word ‘truth’ appears 25 times in the Torah, which consists of the first five books of the Old Testament – Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. It is often used to describe God’s commands, promises, and covenant with the Israelites as being true and faithful (Exodus 34:6, Numbers 23:19).

For example, in Deuteronomy 32:4, Moses declares of God: “He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.” The Torah emphasizes God as the source of truth, and that his laws and words can be trusted fully.

‘Truth’ in the Historical Books

‘Truth’ is found 19 times in the 12 Historical Books of the Old Testament, which record Israel’s history from the entrance into Canaan until the return from exile. In these books, truth is associated with God’s eternal nature (1 Samuel 15:29), his word (1 Kings 17:24), and the righteousness of those who follow him faithfully like David (1 Kings 3:6).

For instance, before Solomon asks for wisdom, he says to God: “You have shown great kindness to your servant, my father David, because he was faithful to you and righteous and upright in heart.”

‘Truth’ in the Wisdom Literature

The Wisdom Books – Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon – use ‘truth’ a total of 25 times. In Psalms, God’s word and commands are described as truth (Psalm 119:142, 151). Proverbs encourages the pursuit of truth and associating with those who speak truth (Proverbs 23:23, Ephesians 4:25).

Ecclesiastes concludes that fearing God and keeping his commandments is the whole duty of everyone (Ecclesiastes 12:13). Overall, these books connect wisdom with understanding and obeying God’s truth.

‘Truth’ in the Prophetic Books

The Prophetic Books contain 39 appearances of the word ‘truth’. The prophets consistently called the nation of Israel to turn from lies and injustice to sincerely worshipping God and living by his truths.

For example, Jeremiah wrote “O Lord, you are righteous, and I am truly ashamed of all that I have done” (Jeremiah 31:19). Daniel prayed, “O Lord, you are a great and awesome God who keeps his covenant of unfailing love with those who love you and obey your commands” (Daniel 9:4).

The prophets emphasized that following God’s truth led to blessing, while rejecting it led to punishment.

Appearances of ‘Truth’ in the New Testament

‘Truth’ in the Gospels

The word ‘truth’ appears over 20 times in the four Gospels. Jesus frequently spoke of truth in his teachings. For example, he said “I am the way, and the truth, and the life” (John 14:6). Jesus also said that those who worship God must worship Him in spirit and in truth (John 4:24).

When Jesus was brought before Pilate, he declared that he came to “bear witness to the truth” (John 18:37). Jesus promised his disciples that the Holy Spirit would guide them into all truth (John 16:13).

‘Truth’ in Acts

The book of Acts records the early beginnings of the Christian church. The word ‘truth’ is used several times here in connection with the gospel message about Jesus. For example, Peter and John were persecuted for speaking the truth about Jesus (Acts 4:27).

Stephen boldly proclaimed the truth before the Sanhedrin, for which he was martyred (Acts 7:56-60). Acts also records that Gentiles received the word of truth, the gospel (Acts 15:7).

‘Truth’ in the Pauline Epistles

The apostle Paul uses the word ‘truth’ extensively in his letters to the early churches. For example, he commends the Thessalonians for receiving the gospel message as the word of truth (2 Thess 2:13). Paul teaches that love rejoices in the truth (1 Cor 13:6).

He speaks of the “word of truth, the gospel” (Col 1:5) and encourages believers to rightly handle the word of truth (2 Tim 2:15). Paul also warns against those who would distort the truth (Rom 1:25).

‘Truth’ in the General Epistles

The word ‘truth’ is found over 20 times in the general epistles (Hebrews, James, 1-2 Peter, 1-3 John, Jude). For example, James exhorts believers to speak truth to one another (Jas 3:14). Peter teaches that believers have been born again through the word of truth (1 Pet 1:23).

John has much to say about truth, stating that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5). John says those who do the truth come to the light (3 John 1:3).

‘Truth’ in Revelation

The book of Revelation contains several references to truth. Jesus is called the “faithful and true witness” (Rev 3:14). At the end of Revelation, an angel warns against anyone adding or taking away from the words of the prophecy in this book (Rev 22:18-19).

Throughout, Revelation emphasizes that God’s prophecies and promises are true and trustworthy.

Key Verses About Truth

The Bible emphasizes the importance of truth in many verses. Here are some key passages about truth in the Bible:

John 14:6

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” This verse describes Jesus as “the truth,” equating truth with Jesus himself.

John 8:32

“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” Knowing the truth of Jesus provides freedom from sin and death.

John 17:17

“Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.” God’s Word itself is truth, providing a standard for what is right and true.

Ephesians 4:15

“Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.” Speaking truth is coupled with love, leading to spiritual maturity.

2 Timothy 2:15

“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” Handling God’s Word rightly is key to pleasing Him.

3 John 1:3-4

“It gave me great joy when some believers came and testified about your faithfulness to the truth, telling how you continue to walk in it. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.” Walking in the truth brings joy and pleases God.

Truth in Bible Translations

The concept of truth is central to the Bible, as it contains God’s revealed truth to humanity. But determining the exact number of times the word “truth” appears in the Bible can be complicated by differences in translation.

Here is an overview of how “truth” is translated in major English Bible versions:

The Hebrew and Greek Words for Truth

In the Old Testament, the main Hebrew word translated as “truth” is אֱמֶת (emet). In the New Testament, the Greek word is ἀλήθεια (aletheia). These words can also be translated as “true” or “truly.”

Truth in the King James Version

The King James Version (KJV) dates back to 1611 and is the most influential English Bible translation. In the KJV, the word “truth” appears 235 times. Key verses include:

  • John 14:6 – “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
  • John 17:17 – “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.”

The KJV uses “truth” consistently for emet/aletheia, establishing it as a key English Bible term.

Truth in Modern Translations

More contemporary English translations sometimes substitute “true” or “truly” where the KJV has “truth.” For example:

Psalm 119:160 – “Thy word is true from the beginning.” Psalm 119:160 – “The sum of your word is truth.”

So “truth” appears less frequently in modern versions — about 200 times in the ESV and CSB, 140 times in the NIV. The meaning is unchanged, just the word choice.

The Truth About “Truth”

While the precise count varies by translation, the concept of truth, rooted in the Hebrew emet and Greek aletheia, undergirds the entire biblical narrative. Whether the word appears 235 times or 140 times or anywhere in between, biblical authors anchor their witness in the revealed truth of God, testifying to the one who declared “I am the way, and the truth, and the life.”

What We Can Learn About Biblical Truth

The Bible contains many invaluable lessons about truth that are still highly relevant today. Here are some key things we can learn from Scripture about what truth is and why it matters:

Truth Comes from God

The Bible teaches that absolute, objective truth exists and originates from God. In John 14:6, Jesus declares “I am the way, and the truth, and the life.” God is the source of all truth, and His Word reveals truth to us.

Unlike relative or subjective human ideas about truth, God’s truth is eternal and unchanging.

Truth is Revealed Through God’s Word

The Bible makes over 3,000 claims to be the Word of God and contains numerous affirmations of its divine inspiration. Scripture teaches that it is “God-breathed” (2 Timothy 3:16) and that human authors spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:20-21).

As such, the Bible provides us access to spiritual and moral truths that we could not otherwise discover on our own.

Truth Has Transformational Power

The Bible teaches that truth has power. When Jesus declares “you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32), He affirms that receiving and embracing the truth transforms lives. As we align our thinking and convictions with God’s truth revealed in Scripture, we can experience freedom from sin’s deception and from the world’s lies.

We Are Called to Speak and Live in Truth

Scripture provides clear ethical commands about truth. We are called to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15), renounce hidden and shameful ways (2 Corinthians 4:2), and reflect the God of truth in our inner being (Psalm 51:6).

Living according to God’s truth brings blessing, while deception leads to strife (Proverbs 12:22).

Truth Will Prevail Over Deception

Despite the proliferation of lies and false teaching, the Bible assures that truth will ultimately triumph. Psalms 117:2 declares that “the truth of the LORD endures forever.” Though the world tries to suppress truth (Romans 1:18), Scripture promises that everything hidden will be revealed and brought to light (Mark 4:22).

In the end, “the truth will set you free.”


In summary, the concept of truth is found throughout both the Old and New Testaments, appearing over 200 times. Key verses emphasize God’s faithfulness to truth, Jesus as the way and truth, and the importance of living in the truth.

Though different translations may use alternate phrasing, the biblical conception of truth remains central. By studying scriptural references to truth, we gain insight into the nature of God and are exhorted to live authentic Christian lives.

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