Well, I personally have not read or even scanned the entire New Testament to see which one is the shortest verse, but these are the contenders that I have found. Is it important? Probably not, but it is interesting. I think we tend to like the traditional Jesus wept because we relate on an emotional level. Truthfully, it actually depends on what we perceive ‘the shortest verse’ to mean.
Verse English Translation
Count Greek Transliteration Actual Gr. Letter Count
Jh. Jesus wept. 9 letters dakruo ho Iesous 16 letters
1Th. Rejoice evermore. 15 letters pantote chairo 14 letters
1Th. Pray without ceasing. 18 letters adialeiptos proseuchomai 22 letters
The verses are all complete sentences. Only two have two English translated words. Only two have two Greek words (in the original language). They contain 9 to 18 letters in English, 14 to 22 letters in Greek. So I guess it’s up to the individual if the shortest verse is the shortest English or Greek, shortest in letters for either language or just how we determine it. Which verse would you choose as the shortest?
In the end, it isn’t that important, but all the verses have tremendous meaning.
We want to know that Jesus has feelings just like us; preferably that He understands the depths of our feelings. This means He can relate to us better. Well, God created us and made us emotional beings and we were made in His image (Gn. ,27) so He must have emotions*. Setting aside the reason He cried and that the wording indicates an underlying issue, Jesus, Savior of our lives shed tears and that is proof of His emotional side.
We have great reason to rejoice. (Be happy, glad, rejoice exceedingly even.) For God came down in the flesh (Mt. ) to be with us in Jesus who taught us that the way to the Father (Jh. 14:6) was through Him. He loved us so much (Jh. ) that He shed his blood for our salvation (Ep. 1:7), died for our sins (1Cr. 15:3) and rose again (v.4) for our hope of eternal glory (Tt. 1:2; Cl. ). Our God with us, never leaving us, with the hope of eternal life with no sin, sickness, pain, corruption or death, how can we not rejoice?
Pray without ceasing.
The importance of prayer cannot be emphasized enough. In the book of Matthew alone, Jesus commands prayer seven times, exemplifies private prayer at least twice. John 17 is 26 verses of prayer Jesus said aloud in the disciple’s presence. Can one pray without ceasing? Well, I would say probably not (we do need sleep J ), but there have been times in my life when I have prayed so often that I didn’t know how it was possible. Certainly, we need to pray more than we do… especially for others!
*some emotions of Jesus:
“…being grieved…” Mr. 3:5 grief
“…My peace I give…” Jh. peace
“…My joy…” Jh. joy
“…wept over it” Lk. distress, sadness
threw over merchandizers Jh. ,17 anger / jealousy
“…be touched with the feelings of…” Hb. Greek- sympathy, compassion
“…exceedingly sorrowful…” Mr. 14:34 deep sorrow
“…why have You forsaken me?” Mt. 27:46 feeling of abandonment