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time furnish interesting information Divine Child is frequently represented as

concerning the customs, habits of life, haughty, capricious, and performing miracles
Catholic and Protestant
religious views, and opinions of their time. for purely selfish reasons. Much about Him is Bibles
They show, in particular, the higher and artificial and theatrical. Some fifty Gospels,
nobler character of the inspired books of the twenty-two Acts, and many Epistles and The Protestant Old Testament omits seven
Bible. Apocalypses of diverse Apostles are known to entire books and parts of two other books. To
The apocryphal books are divided into two have existed, though many have perished. explain how this came about, it is necessary
classes on the basis of their subject matter and Famous among these writings is the Letter of that we go back to the ancient Jewish
reputed authors: King Abgar to our Lord. Other New Scriptures. The Hebrew Bible contained only
1. The Old Testament apocrypha were Testament apocrypha are: Gospels according the Old Testament and from its Old Testament
written chiefly by Jews, though some contain to the Hebrew and according to the Egyptians; it excluded seven entire booksnamely,
interpolations by Christians. These books Gospels of Peter and of Thomas; the Proto- Tobias, Judith, Wisdom, Sirach
propose fictitious narratives about Biblical Evangelium of James; Acts of Peter and Paul; (Ecclesiasticus), Baruch, I and II
persons, or add pious exhortations and Apocalypses of Peter, of Paul, of Maccabeesand parts of Esther(1) and
precepts to the Mosaic Law, or in the style of Bartholomew; Epistle of Paul and Seneca. Daniel(2). These books, which are missing in
prophecy an the name of some patriarch or the Jewish Bible, came into the Catholic
prophet foretell the near advent of the (1) Esther 10:14 to 16:14). Church with the Septuagint, a pre-Christian
Messianic reign. The most famous apocrypha (2) Daniel 3:24-90; 13, 14). Greek translation of the Old Testament. In the
of the Old Testament are the third and fourth Septuagint they are intermingled and given
books of Esdras and the prayer of Manasses, The Evangelization Station equal rank with other books as in the Catholic
books often given as an appendix in the Latin Hudson, Florida, USA Bible. Since the Hebrew collection of the
Vulgate. Other apocryphal books of the Old E-mail: evangelization@earthlink.net sacred books was older than the Septuagint,
Testament are: Book of Henoch, Assumption www.evangelizationstation.com the books of the Hebrew Bible are known as
of Moses, Apocalypse of Abraham, Psalms of the protocanonical (of the first canon,
Solomon, Sibylline Oracles, Testaments of the Pamphlet 641 collection, catalog). The additional books and
Twelve Patriarchs, Ascension of Isaias. sections found in the Septuagint and in
2. The New Testament apocrypha are Catholic Bibles are called deuterocanonical
usually imitation of the genuine sacred books (of the second canon or collection).
of the Bible. They treat at length matters either Jewish hostility to the deutero-canonical
briefly mentioned in the Biblical books or books is probably attributable to the
omitted entirely. Their favorite themes are the conservative spirit of the times. During the last
infancy of our Lord or His life on earth after centuries which preceded the coming of
His resurrection. They contain many silly and Christ, the Jews of Palestine were becoming
foolish legends and are lacking in the extremely reactionary under the stress of
simplicity and sublimity of the Biblical books. unfavorable political conditions. Since the
What they add to the four Gospels is made up deuterocanonical books were of comparatively
on the whole either of crude amplifications or recent origin and since some of them were
of legends. The portrait of our Lord in written in Greekthe language of
particular is a caricature of the true image paganismthey naturally fell under the
which we find in the canonical Gospels. The displeasure of the Jews. The fact, too, that the
early Christians used the Septuagint in their constant and well-established tradition. How deuterocanonical books: Tobias with the fish,
controversies with the Jews only served to well attested this translation is, and how well Susanna (Dan. 13), Daniel and the dragon
confirm the latter in their opposition to this founded it the position of the Catholic Church, (Dan. 14), the angel with the three children in
version of the Old Testament. is made readily apparent by the following the fiery furnace (Dan. 3:49), Habakkuk and
The Protestants of the sixteenth century important facts: In the first place, the Apostles Daniel in the lions den (Dan. 14:35).
objected to the deuterocanonical books and New Testament writers quoted principally Suffice to say, in conclusion, that since
because of their dogmatic content. Thus the from the Septuagint. On fact, of the three they follow the synagogue in their rejection of
second book of Maccabees (12:39-46), for hundred and fifty Old Testament quotations the deuterocanonical books, the Protestants
instance contains the doctrine of purgatory, of found in the New Testament, about three should in all logic follow it in its rejection of
prayers and sacrifices for the dead. The book hundred are taken from the Septuagint..Some the New Testament and of Christ Himself.
of Tobias teaches the efficacy of good works, of the New Testament writers made use of the
and the book of Sirach (15:11-20) clearly deuterocanonicals books themselves, Apocryphal Books
teaches that man has free will. The Protestants particularly the Book of Wisdom, which The term apocryphal is derived from the
could not consistently reject some without seems to have been St. Pauls favorite volume. Greek apokryphos and denotes something
excluding all the deuterocanonical books. The Epistle of James, for example, shows hidden or secret. The sacred books of the
Hence, in drawing up their list of Old familiarity with the book of Sirach. If the ancient pagans, which described the mysteries
Testament books they went back to the list of Apostles and New Testament writers used of religion, were called Apocrypha, because
the Palestinian Jews. They removed the some of the deuterocanonical books, did they they were kept hidden in the temples, and
deuterocanonical books from their traditional not thereby endorse the entire and longer shown only to the initiated. Again, magicians
place among the protocanonical books and Septuagint collection? and wonder-workers forged books reputed to
placed them at the end in a special appendix. Secondly, the deuterocanonical books contain hidden heavenly secrets, and
In addition, they designated them as were accepted in the Church from the designated by the title apocrypha.
apocryphal (spurious, uninspired), a tem beginning. The Epistle of Pope Clement, Later on, however, the term came to
which helped to lower them in the estimation written before the end of the first century, denote a well-defined class of work with
of Protestant readers. The Lutheran and makes use of Sirach and Wisdom, gives an Scriptural or quasi-Scriptural pretensions, but
Anglican Bibles still carry them in the analysis of the Book of Judith, and quotes lacking genuineness and canonicity, and
appendix or give them a least a secondary from the deuterocanonical parts of Esther. The composed during the last two centuries before
rank. But the nonconformistic churches reject same is true of other early Christian writers. Christ or during the early centuries of the
them entirely. In 1827 the British and Foreign The oldest extant Christian Bibles contain the Christian era. These books claimed divine
Bible Society decided not to handle or print deuterocanonical books intermingled with the authority, and were occasionally accepted by
Bibles that contained the deuterocanonical protocanonical. The oldest Christian list of some as inspired, but were excluded from the
books and not to subsidize companies that Biblical books contain the deuterocanonical Bible of the universal Church. There number
published them. In consequence, the books; in 382 Pope Damasus in a Roman is exceedingly great. Most of them are either
deuterocanonical books have practically Council promulgated a formal list of Old and anonymous or pseudonymous. Some are
disappeared from Protestant Bibles. The New Testament books and the list contains the written for edification; others for the sake of
Protestant opposition to these books has in same books as we have in our Catholic Bibles. propagating false and heretical doctrines;
turn influenced the attitude of the Greek and Finally, Christian art of the first four centuries, others, finally, to satisfy a foolish curiosity
Russian Churches. especially that found in the catacombs and concerning prominent Biblical persons. These
The attitude of the Catholic Church toward cemeteries, furnish among others the apocryphal books are not entirely without
the deuterocanonical books is determined by a following illustrations from the value. To the student of the Scriptures they at