To enhance your experience with studying the Bible, try picking selections from this Chronology of the Bible Timeline-Old Testament Timeline Edition. You’ll find loads of Christian books and Bible studies, plus the best Biblical Fiction novels.
Whether you struggle with putting the timeline of the Bible in order, just want to experience a particular period of time, or perhaps imagine a particular person’s backstory, these books will bring the people of the Bible to life right in front of you.
Note, I’ve also included some good books for kids!
Please note that this post contains affiliate links for your convenience. If you make a purchase through one of the links, I may make a small commission. I only recommend books and resources that I’ve enjoyed personally, or believe that you would like. You can read my full disclosure here. You will also find information on Scripture translations there.
Chronology of The Bible
The Bible isn’t exactly put together Chronologically, which can make things kind of confusing. But I’m hoping that this Chronology of the Bible will help build a clear framework in your mind.
Obviously, reading the Bible is the priority, and BlueLetterBible has a 2 page pdf Chronological Bible reading plan, that really helps navigate the ins and outs of what happened when, sorting out Psalms and Prophets in the midst of Kings and Chronicles. That is a particularly tricky bit, if you have a regular Bible and are reading cover to cover.
HOWEVER, There’s something special about reading a book series like the Restoration Chronicles, and realizing vividly that Ezra was alive and well and experiencing what was happening in the book of Esther, in real-time, outside of Susa. I’ve learned much from reading Biblical fiction.
Old Testament Timeline
Some of the Old Testament Timeline is a little hard to follow, especially once you get into the kings and prophets. So this Bible Chronology should help untangle it at least a little.
These days there are a number of good Bible studies and Biblical fiction books to choose from, so here are my favorites to fill in your Bible history timeline.
Keep in mind that Biblical fiction is just that, fiction, and is meant to draw you back to the Bible. Any inconsistencies or errors are because they are inspired by, but not copies of the true accounts.
A useful accompaniment to any read-through of the Bible would be Warren Wiersbe’s With The Word Chapter by Chapter Handbook. With over 1500 pages, it’s very comprehensive, but it is also accessible, with key points and details that you might otherwise miss. (And it’s available on Kindle!)
Bible Timeline Adam to Noah and Babel
Bible chronology from creation and the fall to Noah, the flood, and the Tower of Babel: a fascinating point in time, but not where I want to live!
For an in-depth yet accessible commentary on everything from Creation to Babel, check out Ken Hamm’s latest release, based on decades of Answers in Genesis research.
And a great chapter-by-chapter devotional journal for the book of Genesis, for kids and adults, makes a wonderful accompaniment to these first few sections!
This Genesis Journal has 18 weeks of study to help you HEAR what God is saying through the 50 chapters of Genesis!
From the beginning:
- Forever Loved is a beautiful blend of Biblical fiction and devotional, based on Eve’s story, and the first Father/daughter relationship.
- Havah by Tosca Lee looks about as awesome as her other works. A full-length novel seeing through Eve’s eyes, as though you were right there.
- Daughter of Eden by Jill Eileen Smith is another story of the world’s beginnings seen through Eve’s eyes. The first third is painfully real, as Eve struggles with guilt and Adam with anger. As the population grows, the focus shifts to different dynamics of interpersonal relationships, and Eve struggles to help her offspring trust God and worship him whom they cannot see. Although it was hard, I really enjoyed the depth of this one.
- As the Stars is a collection of 45 short Biblical fiction scenes, plus devotions, Beginning with Eve, and going through the whole Bible.
- The Journey Begins: Adventures with Caravan Bear is a collection of stories where Christopher Rabit reads the Bible, and the other animals ask those questions kids would naturally ask, and the answers are very clear and understandable.
- The Loyal Angel is unforgettable. Imagine before satan and a third of the angels fell. Imagine what Heaven was like, and how ‘guardian angels’ may have witnessed Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, etc. This Biblical novel is told as an angel telling Paul a story to distract him from suffering in prison.
- The Wanderer Scorned by Natasha Woodcraft is very deep. Picture Cain telling his own story to the group assembled at Lamech’s house when he has just boasted about murdering someone and expecting to be avenged 10x more than Cain if he’s attacked in retribution. The emotions and dynamics are fascinating and so very plausible!
Noah’s Times and the Tower of Babel:
- The Remnant Trilogy by Tim Chaffey looks to be the best Noah series out there, though I haven’t had a chance to read it yet.
- The Genesis Trilogy by Kacy Barnett-Gramckow also looks pretty amazing, pre- and- post-flood through Babel.
- From the new Ordinary Women of the Bible series, The Ark Builder’s Wife by Tracy Higley looks great. Giving depth and believable backstories to Noah’s wife and family.
- Noah by Ellen Gunderson Traylor shows a pre-flood world with high levels of technology.
- I’ve heard good things about Noah Primeval and the Chronicles of the Nephilim series, but again, haven’t read these personally.
- To include Senagli, A Cat’s Tale on this list may be a spoiler, but ride along in the pre-flood experience with some of the animals God is calling to come and board the Ark!!
- The Generations of Noah trilogy is the story of Noah and his family, before and after the flood, told from the women’s point of view.
- Oh, my word! I had no idea Gilbert Morris had written biblical fiction!!! I just found Heart of a Lion, a story of Noah by this author, and I’m very excited. I have loved his historical fiction since I was a kid, and am sure this’ll be great too!
- Eye of the Oracle begins the flashbacks and memories of the dragons who were on the ark, and defending Noah and his family, in the epic Dragons in our Midst series for high school and above. You don’t HAVE to read the earlier stories, though they are very good, and you definitely don’t have to be a teen to really enjoy this series!
- Dead Sea Chronicles is the latest series by Jerry B Jenkins, and is dual-timeline, flashing between Terah (Abram’s father) as he served Nimrod, to a present-day suspense storyline. Book One and Book two are extremely fast-paced and unforgettable. Can’t wait for book 3!
- Babel is quite a bridge. I don’t agree with all of it, but it really made me think. Calculating the dates, Noah was probably still alive when Nimrod built the Tower of Babel. Abram may have been, also. Startling thoughts that don’t often get considered.
- Deception’s Tower is a 2 book series, Fallen Kings and War Drum. They look interesting, with a speculative feel to them, and plenty of drama.
- Coat of the Ancients is a speculation of the events that triggered the fall of the Tower of Babel, and it’s a dual-timeline contemporary action novel with a strong male lead character, who is a great dad!
- Melchizidek, King of Jerusalem by Ellen Gunderson Traylor appears to be a very intriguing book. Putting this mysterious king into the context of the times, a descendent of Noah, related to Nimrod, and meeting Abraham after he recovers Lot and the rest of the people of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Timeline of Bible History of the Patriarchs
Bible Timeline from Abraham through Joseph and his brothers settling in Egypt: there are so many good Christian books that fit into this time period!
This is a real turning point when you consider that Abraham was not raised in a God-fearing home. At least not one that cared about the one true God.
- No Woman so Fair by Gilbert Morris is Abram and Sarai’s story and looks incredibly rich, just as the rest of his writing is. His Lion of Judah Series also covers both Jacob and Joseph.
- Song of Abraham by Ellen Gunderson Traylor is another beautiful imagining of this story, by a prolific early writer of Biblical fiction.
- I remember reading Abraham and Sarah: The Long Journey in my early teens. It was one of the first Biblical fiction books we read as a family. It was a lot of fun to read! It was really my first time considering Hagar’s backstory.
- Abraham and Sarah by J SerVaas Williams looks interesting. A bit of a romance, and giving space for the epic that is Abraham and Sarah’s life.
- The Long Road out of Ur by Joel Thimmel is an unusual take on the backstory before God called Abram, focusing mostly on Lot’s point of view. It may make you uncomfortable, though I still highly recommend it and its sequel, Where Your Treasure Lies, which covers the more well-known time in Abraham’s life. The perspective it offers, and the reminder that there was more to Lot (and Abraham) than we usually consider, are much appreciated.
- Hagar by Shadia Hrichi is a powerful, comprehensive study of Hagar’s story, and how it really fits into the greater narrative of both the patriarchs and God’s story as a whole. I learned so much through this study, that I can’t recommend it highly enough.
- The Egyptian Princess: A Story of Hagar by KD Holmberg is a fascinating Biblical fiction entry into the Old Testament Timeline. It was so powerful, and beautifully portrayed some of the possible dynamics that fit the Biblical narrative and help you understand what might have been.
- The Struggle for Love: The Story of Leah by Marilyn T. Parker looks like an amazing read, bringing heart and soul to the struggle of Leah, and her sister Rachel. In this story, Leah doesn’t want to be married, would rather be a midwife, and allow her sister to marry first.
- Leah: Unnoticed, Unwanted, Unloved by Amanda Bedzrah shows a Leah who is in love with Jacob, and hurting because of her father’s manipulation and Jacob’s indifference.
- The Reluctant Rival by Mesu Andrews shows up big, with Leah truly faithful to God, and Rachel still intent on her pagan idols.
- Wives of the Patriarchs series by Jill Eileen Smith includes Sarai, Rebekah, and Rachel, all very well written. I love how she takes these women and makes them walk right off the pages.
- Love Amid the Ashes by Mesu Andrews takes a unique angle, posing the theory that Jacob and Leah’s daughter Dinah married Job, whom we know lived in the time of the patriarchs.
- The Prince and the Prodigal is Jill Eileen Smith’s narrative of Joseph’s story and just might be the most incredibly good story I’ve read! Joseph is portrayed as a young man of character and faith from the start, and we get a good grasp of Judah’s story as the head of the tribe Jesus comes from.
- Joseph by Ellen Gunderson Traylor is another classic entry in the Biblical fiction tapestry.
- Now, Potiphar’s Wife by Mesu Andrews is a truly scary look inside a known ‘bad apple’ character of the Biblical narrative. Scary, because you end up with actual empathy for her, and you REALLY don’t want to. You gain understanding. You don’t agree with her, by any means, but you still gain a compassionate grasp on what might have been. I am known to look for a good reason for someone’s actions, even when it doesn’t seem possible, and this case was hard but so good!! I couldn’t put it down! And book 2 is coming soon!
- In Feast or Famine, Book Two: Where many of the characters are dealing with unfair treatment beyond their control. Learning to trust God in the midst of everything, and forgive others, is a very applicable lesson for us to take to heart through this story. I received a copy of the book from Netgalley and chose to review it here. All thoughts are my own. Stay tuned for Feast or Famine, May, 2023
- When Life Doesn’t Match Your Dreams by Jill Eileen Smith is a deep dive into the women of Genesis, with lessons in trusting God, and hope.
- Tamar by Shadia Hrichi is a powerful study on Tamar, and how God used her to get Judah (the one whose lineage Jesus comes through) back on track!
- Angela Hunt’s Legacies of the Ancient River trilogy tells the story of Joseph, Simeon, and Joseph’s sons Ephriam and Manasseh.
Bible History Timeline: The Exodus through the Judges
The cycle of apostasy is strong in this part of the Bible history timeline, and yes, I have the pirate’s song from What’s in the Bible stuck in my head.
From Moses to Samuel there’s a lot of ground to cover here. And some wonderful stories! I may have grown up with Charlton Heston’s 10 Comandments movie every year. It wasn’t exactly Biblically accurate, but was still a great movie. These books on the Bible history timeline, however, are way better!
- A Mother’s Sacrifice by Carole Towriss tells Jochabed’s story, the story of Moses’s mother, and the beginning of his story.
- The Life Giver by Connilyn Cossette is the story of Shiphrah the midwife, who refused to follow the Pharaoh’s order to kill all the newborn boys.
- Mirriam’s Song by Jill Eileen Smith dives into the story of Moses’ sister, in a beautiful way.
- Sons of Encouragement by Francine Rivers is a series of Biblical fiction with in-depth Bible studies, On Aaron, Caleb, Jonathan, Amos and Silas.
- Treasures of the Nile by Mesu Andrews is a two-book series following first a young Miriam and Pharaoh’s daugher, and then the much older Miriam during the time of the Exodus.
- The Shadow Women by Angela Hunt should be very interesting, telling the story of Moses and the Exodus from the POV of Miriam, Pharaoh’s daughter, and Zipporah.
- Out from Egypt by Connilyn Cossette follows the story of the Exodus, from the perspective of a couple of Egyptians and a Canaanite. Her work is incredible!
- Lord, Change My Attitude by James MacDonald is a ten week study of the wilderness wanderings, and the attitudes of the Israelites (and us) that caused it, contrasted with better attitude choices. I both enjoyed and was challenged by this study.
- Moses, The Deliverer by Ellen Gunderson Traylor is one of the first Biblical fiction books I had the pleasure to read. And I read it several times, because it’s so good! It was a great big hardback 2-in-1 edition, paired with the sequel:
- Joshua, God’s Warrior by Ellen Gunderson Traylor is also fun. Maybe not as accurate, but still fascinating!
- The first three books in the Faith Finders series by Jennifer Jennings tell the tale of the midwives, Miriam and the Exodus, and Rahab.
- Gilbert Morris’s Lion of Judah Series also includes Moses and Rahab.
- Pearl in the Sand by Tessa Afshar is another great Rahab story. Well, everything I’ve read by Tessa has been amazing.
- Rahab’s Courage by Naomi Craig looks fascinating. Rahab’s story is one that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
- Cities of Refuge by Connilyn Cossette is unforgettable in the Bible timeline. It really brings home why the cities were built, and the truths of living in the shelter of the Most High!
- Daughters of the Promised Land is a series by Jill Eileen Smith covering Rahab, Ruth, Deborah and Hannah’s stories. I’ve read Rahab and Ruth, and can’t wait to get ahold of Deborah and Hannah’s stories.
- Woman of Flames by Kim Stokey is an unforgettable imagining of Deborah’s story, with a beautiful idea of just why Jael was willing to kill Sisera.
- The Hittite Warrior piqued my interest, as a look at this time period through the eyes of a young Hittite who seeks aid from Sisera.
- Gideon: Your Weakness, God’s Strength by Priscilla Shirer is a fascinating 6 week study that taught me a lot. I’ve become a big fan since doing this study.
- Providence by Barbara Britton is a story of Naaman’s servant girl, that will stay with you for a long time. It’s a remarkable story of faith.
- This is a great version of Naaman’s servant girl for kids. It’s very real, and so powerful!
- Building Benjamin by Barbara Britton is a fascinating look at the time the tribe of Benjamin was almost wiped out, and the elders encourage the remainder to steal wives from another tribe.
Don’t Forget to Read Your Bible:
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Bible Timeline Kings and Prophets
The Bible chronology with which kings and prophets go together can be difficult to follow. These Bible Fiction stories will help you to make personal connections between them.
Old Testament Timeline: Saul, David, and Solomon
- Annointed Transformed Redeemed is a 6 week in depth study of the life of David, written by Priscilla Shirer, Beth Moore and Kay Arthur, and is one of the best studies I’ve ever had the privelege of completing!
- The Wives of King David by Jill Eileen Smith is a whole series featuring Michal, Abigail and Bathsheba. Plenty of drama, feeling, and action here.
- The Prince, by Francine Rivers, is a novella based on Prince Jonathan, followed by an in-depth Bible study! Fascinating, considering he willingly yeilded his right of ascention, long before it was even a matter of discussion.
- Becoming Queen Bathsheba by Amanda Bedzrah is a fictional account of this particularly messy bit of history. For a fascinating nonfiction work on the subject, try this one!
- The Shepherd and the King by Bryan Saye is an awesome story of David and Saul. With alternating chapters, you can really see the contrast of how each of these two kings, who were both chosen by God, made choices and decisions, shaping their futures.
- The Secret Heir series by Janice Broyles covers David’s early years, and his marriage to Michal. This contains shifting perspectives from David, Michal and Saul.
- Defending David by Barbara Britton is another unusual perspective, a Philistine warrior (and his troops) who now follows God, and sets out to swear loyalty to King David, only to arrive as Absalom’s Coup is in full motion…
- The Loves of King Solomon by Jill Eileen Smith is a collection of shorter stories around each of Solomon’s primary love interests.
- The Legend of Sheba: Rise of a Queen by Tosca Lee is an intense look at the story of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon
- The Last Queen of Sheba by Jill Frances Hudson is one I couldn’t put down. I found it totally believable, and plausible, and unexpected. And the supporting historical facts at the end are awesome!
Bible Timeline for the Kings and Prophets
- Rain by Dana McNeely is the story of a teen boy, son of a priestess of Ba’al, and his encounter with Elijah. It sounds really good, as he has a lot of conflict pulling him in different directions, and ultimately, he must choose sides.
- Elijah: Faith and Fire by Priscilla Shirer is a 7 session Bible study detailing much of the backstory of this giant of the faith. His years in silence and solitud and sameness, that built his faith so that he could stand firm on Mount Carmel.
- When Jonah Ran by Rachel S Neal should give you some empathy, as typically Jonah is viewed harshly for his disobedience and reluctance and pouting. But there’s way more to the story than that, and we should consider the historical and geopolitical placement of this story, too.
- Jonah: Navigating a Life Interrupted by Priscilla Shirer is a 7 session study that shows what God can do when we allow him to interrupt our plans and ideas.
- Love in a Broken Vessel by Mesu Andrews is the story of Hosea and Gomer, and God’s love. I really appreciate Mesu Andrews attention to research and details.
- Lynn Austin’s Chronicles of the Kings 5 book series is a very powerful look at 3 kings, Ahaz, Hezekiah, and Manassah, as well as the prophet Isaiah and a couple of others. I couldn’t put it down, even when I hated what was happening. Definitely sent me back to the scriptures more than once!
- Focused on King Hezekiah’s time, but from Egypt, God King by Joanne Williamson is a unique take, from Hezekiah’s Egyptian ally’s perspective.
- Isaiah’s Daughter and Isaiah’s Legacy by Mesu Andrews are another remarkable pair, sharing a glimpse of Isaiah, Hezekiah and Manasseh. True or not, it’s a powerful story! Paired with her book on Daniel, Of Lions and Fire, this trilogy is one that you won’t soon forget!
- Daniel, Prophet at the King’s Command by Terry Thompson is a bit more academic, as it’s set as a college student and professor discussing Daniel and his prophesies, alternating with the story of Daniel. Well worth reading, and well written, just a little more Bible study / novel mashup.
- The Hidden Prince by Tessa Afshar gave me chills. An incredible story. A young woman who really doesn’t fit the normal role, coming of age under Daniel’s roof. When things go awry and she’s sent away for her own protection, she discovers a hidden prince who needs her unique skillset to protect him, for a time in the future, where he has a great purpose fortold long before he was born!
- By the Waters of Babylon by Mesu Andrews takes you along with the Exiles from Jerusalem to Babylon. Meet Ezekiel along the way. A good way to experience the timeline of Bible history!
- The Restoration Chronicles by Lynn Austin is yet another win! Covering the very end of Daniel’s time, through Zecharaiah, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther from a completely different point of view than usual (Jerusalem and Babylon, instead of Susa), and is SO well written!
- Several of my favorite books about Esther can be found here.
What’s on Your Bible Timeline?
This is by no means an exhaustive list on the Old Testament timeline of Bible history. Just a highlights reel of books and Bible studies I’ve enjoyed or been curious about.
Which one is your favorite? And did I miss it? Maybe I’ve never heard about it. Please do and another to my neverending TBR!!!
(New Testament Timeline in progress)