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Apocrypha

Meaning: Hidden things, spurious, writings that are not considered genuine and therefore not part of Scripture

In modern times, some have deceptively referred to these books as “the Lost Books of the Bible.” These books have not been lost; Christians and Jews have always known about them. The correct name is the Apocrypha. This name was given to certain ancient books which found a place in the LXX and Latin Vulgate versions of the Old Testament used by Catholics today. They are not accepted as Scripture by Protestants or Jews. Some were appended to great Bible translations made from those documents in the sixteenth century. However, they should not be regarded in any sense as parts of the inspired Word.

Why?

  1. They are not once quoted by the New Testament writers, who frequently quote from the LXX. Our Lord and his apostles confirmed by their authority the ordinary Jewish canon, which was the same as we have today.

  2. These books were written not in Hebrew but in Greek, and during the “period of silence,” from the time of Malachi, after which direct revelations from God ceased till the Christian era.

  3. The contents of the books themselves show that they are not part of Scripture.

The Old Testament Apocrypha includes the following (partial list). Ancient Jewish writers and rabbis did not accept them as Scripture.

  • Additions to Esther
  • Apocalypse of Adam
  • Apocalypse of Moses
  • Bel and the Dragon (an addition to Daniel)
  • Book of Baruch
  • Book of Wisdom
  • Books of Adam
  • Books of Esdras
  • Books of the Maccabees
  • Conflict of Adam and Eve with Satan
  • Daniel and Susanna (addition to Daniel)
  • Ecclesiasticus
  • Judith
  • Letter of Jeremiah
  • Life of Adam and Eve
  • Odes of Solomon
  • Prayer of Azariah (addition to Daniel)
  • Prayer of Manasseh
  • Psalm 151
  • Psalms of Solomon
  • Secrets of Enoch (aka Second Book of Enoch)
  • Sirach
  • Testament of Adam
  • Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs
  • Tobit
  • Wisdom of Solomon

The New Testament Apocrypha is very extensive and bears distinct evidences of its non-apostolic origin. It is utterly unworthy of regard. Partial list of New Testament Apocrypha:

  • 3 Corinthians
  • Acts 29
  • Acts and Martyrdom of St. Matthew the Apostle
  • Acts of Andrew
  • Acts of Andrew and Matthias
  • Acts of Barnabas
  • Acts of John the Theologian
  • Acts of John
  • Acts of Paul
  • Acts of Paul and Thecla
  • Acts of Peter
  • Acts of Peter and Andrew
  • Acts of Peter and Paul
  • Acts of Philip
  • Acts of Thaddeus (aka Epistles of Pontius Pilate)
  • Acts of Thomas
  • Acts of Xanthippe and Polyxena
  • Apocalypse of Paul
  • Apocalypse of Peter
  • Apocalypse of Thomas
  • Apocryphon of James
  • Apocryphon of John
  • Book of James (not to be confused with the Epistle of James)
  • Book of John concerning the dormition of Mary
  • Book of John the Evangelist
  • Book of Thomas the Contender
  • Consumation of Thomas
  • Diatession
  • Epistle of Barnabas
  • Epistle of the Apostles
  • Epistle to the Laodiceans
  • Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Laodiceans
  • Epistles of Jesus Christ and Abgarus King of Edessa
  • Epistles of Paul the Apostle to Seneca, with Seneca's to Paul
  • First Apocalypse of James
  • First Infancy Gospel of Jesus Christ
  • Gospel (Acts) of Nicodemus (aka The Acts of Pontius Pilate)
  • Gospel of Barnabas
  • Gospel of Bartholomew
  • Gospel of James (aka Infancy Gospel of James or Protevangelium of James
  • Gospel of Mary
  • Gospel of Nicodemus (aka Acts of Pilate)
  • Gospel of Peter
  • Gospel of Philip
  • Gospel of the Lord (Marcion)
  • Gospel of the Infancy of Jesus Christ
  • Gospel of the Nativity of Mary
  • Gospel of Thomas
  • History of Joseph the Carpenter
  • Infancy Gospel of Matthew
  • Infancy Gospel of Thomas
  • Letter of Peter to Philip
  • Martyrdom of Bartholomew
  • Martyrdom of Matthew
  • Narrative of Joseph of Arimathaea
  • Paul and Seneca
  • Revelation of John the Theologian
  • Revelation of Paul
  • Second Apocalypse of James
  • Secret Gospel of Mark
  • Shepherd of Hermas
  • Teaching of Thaddeus
  • Teachings of the Twelve Apostles

The Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha can be read on-line.

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