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  • Writer's picturePastor Paul

What about the Apocrypha? Are there really lost books of the Bible?

Q: What about the Apocrypha? Are there really lost books of the Bible?

A: For those who may not know, the word apocrypha means "hidden" and when we talk about the Apocrypha we're referring to a collection of writings that are not found in the Bible. The apocryphal books were written primarily during the intertestamental period — roughly 400 years between the Old and New Testaments. The books of the Apocrypha include 1 Esdras, 2 Esdras, Tobit, Judith, Wisdom of Solomon, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, the Letter of Jeremiah, Prayer of Manasseh, 1 Maccabees, and 2 Maccabees, as well as additions to the books of Esther and Daniel. Some, but not all of these can be found in the Roman Catholic Bible.*

While these books were looked upon with respect by ancient Jews and even considered useful for the historical information some of them contain, they were never considered to be inspired Scripture. The books contain theological errors and some of what is claimed as historical is questionable or just plain wrong. So, these books are not lost. They are just non-biblical writings.

Personally, I've never given the apocryphal writings much of my time since there is so much in the 66 books of the Word of God to study and understand.

*Roman Catholicism officially added some of the apocryphal books to their Bible at the Council of Trent in the mid 1500s A.D.. This decision was primarily a reaction to Martin Luther's claims that the apocryphal books were not inspired and therefore should not be considered canonical.

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