Apocryphal Books

Written By: on Feb 7th, 2010 and filed under Articles, We Believe, Youth And Faith.

h. The Books in Apocrypha

1. The First Esdras:
We find here description and delineations similar to those in Chronicles, Ezra and Nehemiah. Also, arguments and counter arguments by the three youths in the palace of the Persians, the reconstruction of the temple of God, the code of laws dictated by Esdras are all included.

2. The Second Esdras:
Here we find the judgment for the ‘Sinning Jews and also the seven visions seen by Ezra.

3. Tobit:
During the reign of King Shabmanezer, Tobit . and Tobias were enslaved and taken to Nineveh, where they were tortured for the sake of their faith. The book describes how they escaped torture and how Tobit regained his eyesight.

4. The book of Judith:
This book is written in Hebrew. We read how Judith saved the Jews from Holo Fernes, notorious & for his weakness for wine and women.

5. The addition to David:
The prayers of Alsariah and the three youths, and the glorification of God who saved them from the burning flames are included here.

6. Susanna:
The book of Susanna narrates how in Babylon, Daniel saved .a Jewish lady named Susanna from a difficult-to- escape trap laid to by some prominent citizen to destory her.

7. Bel and Dragon:
Here we find the mockery of idol worship. Daniel was against the’ worship of Baal and was therefore thrown into the den of lions. He lay there for six days and the seventh day God delivered him.

8. The Addition to Esther: In the Greek book we find the following descriptions:-
1. The dream of Mordeccai. 2. The King’s order to destroy all Jews. 3. The prayers of Esther and Mordeccai. 4. Esther in the presence of the King. 5. The order of the King and the call to the Jews to defend themselves and 6. The dream of Mordeccai

9. The Prayer of Manasseh: (After Manasseh’s repentance)

10. Baruch:
This is a prayer of comfort and consolation cn the model of chapter 9 in the book of Daniel.

11. The letter from Jeremiah:
This is to comfort the people under Babylonian captivity.

12. Ecclesiasticus: (Rara Sera)
This contains the wisdom and moral code given by Jesus Ben Sira

13. The Wisdom of Solomon:
This highlights the importance {)f truth and the faith of the Jews.

14. The first book of the Maccabees:
This is the narration of historical events during the period from the day before the revolt of the Maccabains to the death of Simon (175-134 B. C.) .

15. The Second book of the Maccabees:
Ideas like the permanence of the soul, resurrection, the loyalty to the judgments, the intercession of the saints, the prayer for the dead – all these are given here.

The Main thoughts in Apocrypha

The main thoughts about God in these books are quite in harmony with those in the Hebrew Old Testament. God reveals Himself through manifold ways, for example, through Nature, through wisdom and through the angels (2 Esdras 5 :31). Also We find ideas like 4tbe one God 5God the creator 6The Song of the Youth, ‘God the father, God the Everlasting, God the Lord of History, God the omnipotent and God the righteous. In some of the passages we find the blending of Judgments and Wisdom. ‘Some passages stress the need for maintaining loyalty to the Torah.

The study of Apocrypha helps to grasp the different thoughts, Ideologies and spiritual conflicts in the religion and culture of the Jews during the three centuries from 200 B C. Also this is important as a connecting link between the Old Testament period and the New Testament period. We can grasp better by going through Apocrypha, the importance of the names and also the pieces of advice and precepts developed in the New Testament. These facts therefore attract scholars to the study of Apocrypha, in spite of the attitudes adopted officially by the denominations of the Church they belong to.

1. Ecclesiastes 42: 15
2. Wisdom 10: 1
3. 2Esdras 5:31
4. Ecclesiastes 36:5
5. Ecclesiastes 42:23
6. Song of youth 35-68
7. Tubed 13:4
8. 1. Baruk 3:9-4:4
9. Esdras 7:20

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2 Responses for “Apocryphal Books”

  1. John Mathew, Toronto says:

    Should Orthodox priests be referring to the Deuterocanonical (i.e., the “second canon”) books as the “Apocrypha” especially since many Orthodox Churches include these books in their canons?

  2. This is a really great summary of the Apocrypha in the various Bible translations/traditions. I am especially interested in the Aramaic (Syriac) Old Testament or Peshitta Tanakh. Different Aramaic (Syriac) manuscripts have very different traditions over which books of the Apocrypha are included.

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