Ask Difference

New Testament vs. Old Testament — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman & Urooj Arif — Published on February 12, 2024
The Old Testament comprises religious texts of Judaism and early Christianity. The New Testament contains Christian scriptures, focusing on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ.
New Testament vs. Old Testament — What's the Difference?

Difference Between New Testament and Old Testament


Key Differences

The Old Testament is the foundational religious text for Judaism, consisting of books such as Genesis, Exodus, and Psalms. It is also significant in Christianity, serving as the sacred scriptures of the Hebrew Bible. The Old Testament encompasses historical narratives, laws, poetry, and prophecy, offering insights into the beliefs and practices of ancient Israel.
The New Testament, specific to Christianity, centers around the life, teachings, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It includes the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John), the Acts of the Apostles, letters (Epistles), and the Book of Revelation. The New Testament represents the core theological teachings of Christianity, emphasizing salvation through faith in Jesus Christ and the establishment of the New Covenant.

Comparison Chart

Religious Tradition

Judaism and early Christianity

Time Period Covered

Primarily focuses on Jesus Christ
Spans from creation to post-exilic period

Central Figure

Jesus Christ
Various figures, including Abraham, Moses

Covenant Emphasized

New Covenant
Old Covenant


Written in Greek
Primarily in Hebrew, with some Aramaic

Compare with Definitions

New Testament

Christian scriptures focusing on Jesus Christ.
The New Testament narrates the life, teachings, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Old Testament

Spans from the creation narrative to the post-exilic period.
The Old Testament covers a wide range of historical and prophetic events.

New Testament

Emphasizes the New Covenant in Christianity.
The New Testament introduces the concept of the New Covenant, centered around Jesus Christ.

Old Testament

Includes books like Genesis, Exodus, and Psalms.
Genesis in the Old Testament narrates the creation story and early history.

New Testament

Contains the Gospels, Acts, Epistles, and Revelation.
The Gospels in the New Testament provide accounts of Jesus' ministry and teachings.

Old Testament

Sacred scriptures of Judaism and part of Christianity.
The Old Testament is integral to both Judaism and early Christian beliefs.

New Testament

Written in Greek.
The original texts of the New Testament were written in the Greek language.

Old Testament

Primarily written in Hebrew, with some Aramaic.
The linguistic diversity of the Old Testament reflects the cultural and historical context of its composition.

New Testament

Core theological teachings of Christianity.
Christianity derives its foundational beliefs from the theological teachings found in the New Testament.

Old Testament

Emphasizes the Old Covenant.
The Old Testament establishes the Old Covenant between God and the people of Israel.

Common Curiosities

What is the significance of the New Covenant?

The New Covenant, emphasized in the New Testament, signifies the relationship between God and humanity through faith in Jesus Christ.

What are the Gospels in the New Testament?

The Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John) in the New Testament provide accounts of Jesus Christ's life, teachings, death, and resurrection.

What is the Book of Revelation about?

The Book of Revelation in the New Testament provides apocalyptic visions and prophecies about the end times.

Is the Old Testament used in modern Judaism?

Yes, the Old Testament is a foundational text in Judaism, known as the Hebrew Bible.

Is the New Testament exclusive to Christianity?

Yes, the New Testament is specific to Christianity and contains Christian scriptures.

Does the Old Testament include prophecies?

Yes, the Old Testament contains numerous prophecies, foretelling future events and the coming of a Messiah.

Are historical events narrated in the Old Testament?

Yes, the Old Testament narrates historical events, including the creation narrative, the exodus from Egypt, and the reigns of various kings.

When was the New Testament written?

The New Testament was written in the first century AD, with varying dates for each book.

Who are key figures in the Old Testament?

Key figures in the Old Testament include Adam, Abraham, Moses, David, and Isaiah, among others.

Does the Old Testament include legal and moral codes?

Yes, the Old Testament includes laws and moral codes, such as the Ten Commandments given to Moses.

Are there contradictions among the Gospels?

The Gospels present different perspectives, but the variations are often seen as complementary rather than contradictory.

How does the Old Testament influence Christian beliefs?

The Old Testament provides the foundation for Christian beliefs, establishing the historical and theological context.

What is the Old Covenant?

The Old Covenant is the covenant between God and the people of Israel, established through figures like Moses.

How does the New Testament define salvation?

The New Testament emphasizes salvation through faith in Jesus Christ, who is considered the Savior.

Does the New Testament replace the Old Testament in Christianity?

While the New Testament builds upon the Old, Christians view them as complementary, with the New Covenant fulfilling and expanding upon the Old.

Share Your Discovery

Share via Social Media
Embed This Content
Embed Code
Share Directly via Messenger

Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.
Co-written by
Urooj Arif
Urooj is a skilled content writer at Ask Difference, known for her exceptional ability to simplify complex topics into engaging and informative content. With a passion for research and a flair for clear, concise writing, she consistently delivers articles that resonate with our diverse audience.

Popular Comparisons

Trending Comparisons

New Comparisons

Trending Terms