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Meaning: spurious, writings that are not considered genuine and therefore not part of authentic Scripture; not approved

Greek: apo—“sprung from, descended from” + kryptein—“hidden; obscure, hard to understand,” thus of hidden or unknown authorship

In modern times, some have deceptively referred to these many books as “the Lost Books of the Bible.” Nothing could be further from the truth. These books have not been lost; Christians and Jews have always known about them. The commonly accepted correct name is “the apocrypha”—writings that have come from hidden or unknown authors.

This name is given to certain ancient writings which found a place in the Septuagint and Latin Vulgate versions of the Old Testament used by Catholics today. When examined with discernment and thorough understand of what actual Scripture says, it is obvious that they are part of Satan’s often effective plan to confuse and deceive the naive and uninformed.

They are NOT accepted as Scripture by Protestants or Jews. Unfortunately, some were appended to Bible translations in the 16th century. However, they should not be regarded in any sense as parts of the true inspired Word of God or true Divine revelation.

Why rejected?

  1. Their actual authorship is unknown and undiscoverable, and their true origins doubtful.

  2. The authority of our Lord and his Apostles confirmed the ordinary Jewish canon of Scripture, which was the same as we have today.

  3. In His wisdom, God proved the identity and authority of the true Apostles of Christ through numerous miracles, signs and wonders. That was the whole purpose of those thousands of miracles. And that is why those signs ended once their authority was amply established and God’s inspired Word was complete.
  4. The Apostles knew about them, but did not use them. They are not once quoted by the New Testament writers, who frequently quote from the rest of Septuagint.

  5. 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.

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

Partial list of Old Testament times apocrypha

Even ancient Jewish writers and rabbis did not accept them as Scripture.

Partial list of New Testament times Apocrypha

They are very many of these and contain clear evidences of their NON-apostolic origin. These writings are utterly unworthy of regard.

  • 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 Matthias (possibly the same as Traditions of Matthias)
  • 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


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Article Version: September 14, 2017