Catholic Bible vs Protestant Bible: Difference and Comparison

Christianity, the world’s fastest-growing religion, is divided into six major ethnic groups: the Church of the East, Oriental Orthodoxy, Eastern Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, Protestantism, and Restorationism.

Though all these groups acquired their root from the same place, the discrepancies and differences of opinions and beliefs among themselves led to the birth of six mainstream groups.

Key Takeaways

  1. The Catholic Bible has 73 books, while the Protestant Bible has 66.
  2. The Catholic Bible includes the Apocrypha, which contains books, not the Protestant Bible.
  3. The Catholic Church regards the Bible as part of the Church’s tradition, while the Protestant Church regards the Bible as the only source of religious authority.

Catholic Bible vs Protestant Bible

Catholic Bible is the Holy Bible used by the Roman Catholic Church and consists of 73 books, and it is regarded as the part of the church’s tradition. Protestant Bible is a holy book that was formulated by Protestants after being revised, and is made up of 66 books. It only includes scriptures that were in Hebrew.

Catholic Bible vs Protestant Bible

The number of books in the Old Testament is the most significant factor that differs between the Bibles.

The Catholic Bible comprises 73 books, including the ‘Apocrypha’, which signifies the hidden private books not meant to be accessed by the public.

‘Apocrypha ‘occurs in the Septuagint, a Greek version of the old testament.

The Protestant Bible is the revised and transcripted version of the Christian Bible formulated by the Protestants. It includes and accepts only the scriptures that are strictly in Hebrew.

Protestant Bible contains 66 books in total, out of which 39 books are from the Old Testament and 27 books from the new testament.

Comparison Table

Parameters Of ComparisonCatholic BibleProtestant Bible
Roots and OriginIt comprises the teachings and stories of Jesus Christ.It is a revised version of the Christian Bible produced by Martin Luther and the protestants.
Number of booksThe Bible consists of 73 books in the old testament and 27 books belonging to the new testament.The old testament consists of 66 books in the old testament and 27 in the new testament.
PopeThe pope of the Catholic Church is considered to be a Vicar of Christ. He is believed to be an infallible leader who heads the church and the Vatican City.The protestants strongly believe human beings cannot be infallible and always faithfully believe Jesus Christ as the head of the Church.
EucharistThey have their doctrine of Transubstantiation, which emphasises that the bread and drink used during the mass become the body and blood of Christ himself.They call it Communion or Lord’s Supper. It commemorates the death of Jesus, and according to them, the bread and wine are symbols that signify the body and blood of Christ.
Praying to SaintsTheir doctrine of intercessory saints emphasizes praying to holy men who passed away in addition to the worship of Christ. Veneration, according to them, is praying through the saints rather than praying to them.They emphasize the freedom and possibility of humans’ direct access and connection with God.

What is Catholic Bible?

The Bible contains the teachings, literature, wisdom, and story of Jesus Christ, who lived in the province of Judea in the Roman Empire during the 1st century CE.

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Containing 27 books of the new testament and 73 books of the old testament, including the ‘Apocrypha’, the Greek version.

To be appropriate, it is called the Roman Catholic church. During the term of Jesus, both Hebrew and Septuagint were used in the scriptures, so the catholic bible consists of both these scriptures.

The Catholic Bible is officially called ‘THE VULGATE’. The Catholic Canon law publishes the Roman Catholic Bible.

A revision of the Vulgate in Latin is now globally considered the official version of the Bible. The Catholic Bible remained unchanged even after Martin Luther carried out the Reformation.

Despite stories from the Roman Catholic Bible that many have opposed and disagreed with, it remains the same as its original scripture.

Some of the books that the Catholic bible contains are Baruch, Judith, Sirach, stories of Susanna, Tobit, stories of Bel and the Dragon, etc. It was formulated and complied with during the late fourth century.

catholic bible 1

What is Protestant Bible?

Protestant Bible Strictly accepts only Hebrew scriptures and has 66 books in the old testament and 27 in the new testament.

The opposition of Martin Luther against the catholic church led to the formation of protestants. The Protestant Bible is the modified version produced by the Protestants.

The Protestant Bible excluded the canonical ones considered significant.

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Though initially, the Protestant Bible did not comprise the ‘Apocrypha’, since Martin Luther did not consider them, many English-speaking Protestants agreed to place them in a separate section of the old testament; the ‘Apocrypha’ is not considered canonical.

The protestant Bible with ‘Apocrypha’ is gaining popularity in recent times.

The protestants have a differently oriented and comparatively contradictory approach towards Christianity though they have a lot of similarities.

protestant bible 1

Main Differences Between Catholic Bible and Protestant Bible

  1. The Roman Catholic Bible consists of 73 books in the Old Testament, whereas the Protestant Bible contains only 66 books. The Catholic Bible accepts both Hebrew and Septuagint scriptures. Initially, The Protestant Bible strictly prohibited the non-canonical Apocrypha from being included, whereas the modern versions including these exist.
  2. The Catholic Church has a pope, the head of the church, and the Vatican City. The protestants don’t believe in human beings being infallible, and their only head of the church is Jesus.
  3. The Catholics believe that the bread and wine used in the mass form Jesus’s body and blood. On the other hand, the Protestants see the drink and bread as a symbol of the blood and body of Jesus.
  4. The Catholic doctrine of intercessory allows them to worship saints in addition to worshipping Jesus. It is similar to asking a church member to pray for your family’s well-being. They see it as praying through them rather than praying to the saints. Protestants don’t believe in the veneration of saints but rather emphasize the direct connection between god and humans.
Difference Between Catholic Bible and Protestant Bible

Last Updated : 13 July, 2023

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23 thoughts on “Catholic Bible vs Protestant Bible: Difference and Comparison”

  1. It’s interesting to see the historic roots of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles and how these differences continue to influence the practices and traditions of Christianity today.

    • The preservation of these differences has certainly contributed to the depth and complexity of these religious traditions, each with their unique theological perspectives.

    • The schisms within Christianity have given rise to fascinating variations in belief, yet at the same time, they showcase the enduring durability of this faith across different cultural and historical contexts.

  2. The global spread of Christianity is fascinating and suggests that its messages resonate with a vast and diverse audience. The religious evolution from this shared origin is intriguing and illustrates the rich diversity within the faith.

    • The development of Christianity has certainly led to a complex and nuanced landscape of differing beliefs. It’s interesting to see how these various factions emerged from a common foundation.

  3. The developmental paths of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles have contributed to the nuanced and multifarious nature of Christianity’s doctrinal heritage, reflecting the varied perspectives that have shaped this global faith.

    • The complex interplay of history, culture, and theology within the differences of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles imparts a profound understanding of the religious diversity encompassed within Christianity.

  4. The distinctive theological stances and interpretations of scripture between Catholicism and Protestantism have indeed led to profound differences that continue to influence the religious practices of these communities.

    • The divergent paths taken by Catholicism and Protestantism highlight the complexities of religious interpretation and the enduring impact of these divergent theological perspectives.

  5. The historical evolution of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles illustrates the complex interplay of theological interpretations and doctrinal development within different strands of Christianity.

    • The distinct compositions of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles illuminate the intricate historical and theological trajectories that have characterized different sects within Christianity, showcasing its diverse doctrinal heritage.

    • The divergent paths of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles capture the intricate and varied doctrinal perspectives that have emerged within Christian theology, reflecting the rich tapestry of its historical development.

  6. The proliferation of differing beliefs and interpretations within Christianity underscores the rich diversity of thought and practice that has emerged from its common origin.

  7. The differences in biblical composition between Catholicism and Protestantism are illuminating. It’s fascinating how distinct interpretations and preferences have shaped the formation of these religious texts.

    • The evolution of these texts reflects the divergent theological and doctrinal beliefs that have influenced the development of these religious traditions.

  8. The contrasting scriptures of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles reveal the intricate interpretive and doctrinal distinctions within Christianity, underscoring the rich theological diversity that has emerged from its common historical origins.

    • The distinct biblical canons of the Catholic and Protestant traditions underscore the rich diversity of doctrinal thought and scriptural interpretation within Christianity, shedding light on its multifaceted historical and theological landscape.

    • The divergent scriptural compositions of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles manifest the complex and multifaceted nature of Christian doctrine, reflecting the diverse theological perspectives that have shaped the faith’s historical trajectory.

  9. The contrast between Catholic and Protestant Bibles reveals the multitude of theological perspectives that have arisen within Christianity, offering a deeper understanding of the faith’s enduring complexity.

    • The divergent theological doctrines and scriptural interpretations between Catholicism and Protestantism encapsulate the intricate and multifaceted nature of Christian theology and tradition.

    • The discordant scriptural compositions of the Catholic and Protestant Bibles highlight the rich doctrinal diversity that has shaped the beliefs and practices of these distinct Christian traditions.

  10. The distinct theological nuances reflected in the Catholic and Protestant Bibles offer valuable insight into the historical and doctrinal trajectory of these religious traditions, underscoring the multifaceted nature of Christian faith.

    • The differences in scripture between these traditions exemplify the rich tapestry of theological thought and scriptural interpretation within Christianity, providing a lens into its diverse historical development.


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