Q: #468. How many islands are mentioned by name in the Bible?
By: Steve Shirley
A: All but one of the islands mentioned by name in the Bible are found in the New Testament, with most being in the book of Acts. I found 11 islands total (if you find any more, please let me know). Following is a list of these islands, along with the verses in which they are mentioned.
|Name Of Island||Verses|
|Arvad||(Ezek 27:8,11)(Gen 10:18)(1 Chr 1:16)|
|Clauda (Cauda)||(Acts 27:16)|
|Crete||(Acts 27:7,12,13,21)(Titus 1:5,12)(Acts 2:11)|
|Cyprus||(Acts 4:36)(Acts 11:19,20)(Acts 13:4)(Acts 15:39)(Acts 21:3,16)(Acts 27:4)|
|Melita (Malta)||(Acts 28:1)|
|Samothracia (Samothrace)||(Acts 16:11)|
|Syracuse (a city on the island of Sicily)||(Acts 28:12)|
The word "island" (Heb. = "iy" / Gr. = "nesos"), or a form of that word (islands, isle, isles) is used 49 times in the KJV Bible. There are several interesting things regarding this word. First, the plural of "island" ("islands / isles") is never used in the New Testament. It is used 34 times in the Old Testament. Second, when the plural word is used, it often doesn't mean "islands," but rather "coastlands." In versions like the NASB or NIV, it is often translated that way (i.e. Ezek 26:15,18, Ezek 27:15, Dan 11:18). Finally, in a number of places, "islands" are connected with prophecy (i.e. Isa 11:11, Isa 49:1, Zeph 2:11, Rev 6:14, Rev 16:20).
***Note: (Jer 2:10) and (Ezek 27:6) mention "the isles of Chittim" (Kittim)." It is believed that Chittim was essentially equivalent to Cyprus, and came to be associated with the all the islands and coasts in that area.