Do you Consider the Apocrypha Worth Studying?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by righteousdude2, Mar 19, 2015.

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Do you consider the Apocrypha worth using in Bible Study?

  1. Yes, and I have used some of them (please list in your comments which books you see of value).

    6 vote(s)
    85.7%
  2. No.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. No, I see these books as not being of value.

    1 vote(s)
    14.3%
  4. Here is my opinion (see my comments).

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. righteousdude2

    righteousdude2
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  2. go2church

    go2church
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    Sure. Helps understand the expectations of Messiah the Jews had when Jesus comes.
     
  3. righteousdude2

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    Good point!
     
  4. Sapper Woody

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    I think they are a good read. But I lump them in with "Christian Mythology". It's easy to see Roman Catholic influence in some of them. Or perhaps vice versa.
     
  5. righteousdude2

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    My conservative, protestant leaning college felt like you, which is why they gave hardly any recognition to that subject.
     
  6. Sapper Woody

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    Personally, I love studying "Christian Mythology". I use the term for things that people believe about angels, demons, etc, but for which there is no Biblical proof. Things such as the supposed angel Metatron. There is no mention of him in the Bible, but he is mentioned in the Babylonian Talmud. According to myth, fallen humans could not hear God's voice without being destroyed, so God used the angel Metatron to be his voice. Following the legend, it would have been Metatron speaking from the burning bush, and also him speaking when the dove descended upon Jesus at His baptism.

    I do not take this subject to be truth, but find it fascinating. I consider myself to be somewhat of an "Angelologist", and love hearing myths and legends about them. They make for some good (and sometimes inspirational) stories, whether or not they are true (which it is my opinion that most, if not all, of them are not).

    In this vein of thought, I lump the Apocrypha in with all the other pseudopigraphal books. They make for a fascinating read. But if you try to build doctrine out of them, it will spawn confusion. In fact, I would warn new Christians to stay away from them, as they read much like scripture, and it would be easy to get confused. Some of the Apocryphal books have content that is directly contrary to the 66 canonical books.

    It's actually not unlike reading the Qur'an. If you read the Qur'an, it reads a lot like the Old Testament, and has many of the same historical stories in it. But, again, you have to be able to make a distinction. It would be too easy for someone searching for truth to be led astray by these books.

    In the same vein, I have digital copies of the Keys of Solomon that I received from a pagan acquaintance. I made him a deal. I would read them, if he would read the New Testament. I held up my end of the bargain. While interesting to read, I would not let my daughters read them. There are pagan spells of summoning explicitly outlined in them, and I would no sooner let them read that and develop a fascination for magick than I would let them use a Ouija board.
     
  7. Baptist Believer

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    Interesting time for this question to be asked...

    I'm preparing for this week's Sunday School lesson and we are making the transition from the Old Testament to the New. To bridge the gap, I need to explain many of the historical events preceding the Incarnation, so we are going to use 1 and 2 Maccabees to review the messianic revolts - especially the one with "Judah the Hammer" (Judas Maccabeus) - so we can appreciate the messianic expectations depicted in the Gospels.

    In the church I grew up in, we were reacting so hard against Roman Catholicism, even the mention of a non-canonical book would incur severe discipline.
     
  8. Rob_BW

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    Some certainly have value; 1 and 2 Maccabees spring to mind. Lots of good info for understanding the world of the New Testament. But as a historical, not doctrinal, source.
     
  9. quantumfaith

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    SW..... I have a limited memory of my long ago beloved OT Prof. I remember something regarding a lecture he gave concerning angels.....and in that lecture (if I remember correctly) the Hebrews had no concept of angels and such until after the exile. Do you know anything of this?
     
  10. Farmer34

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    Not a lot of them are of value--but the Maccabean history is important and needs to be understood in the overall context of scripture itself. Some of the 'Pseudepigrapha' is even of value, especially parts (not all) of the books of Enoch. The Dead Sea Scrolls 1QS and 1QH are of great value, not that they are without error, however, they reveal the views of the Jewish nonconformist community prior to Christ on salvation and other issues that we desperately need to understand. Otherwise we're not informed.
     
    #10 Farmer34, Mar 20, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 20, 2015
  11. Sapper Woody

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    I'm on my phone, and so can't give too much of an in depth answer. But I've heard that, too. I can't say conclusively that it's true or not. We see angels visiting Lot, but whether or not he knew they were angels is uncertain.



    The earliest time that we know of for sure that they knew about angels was when the angel visited Daniel, which was of course during the Babylonian captivity (which is the exile I assume you are talking about).
     
  12. Darrell C

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    I look at it like this, we have plenty of inspired Scripture we should be in study of rather than, as Rob BW stated, something that should be viewed as of historical value, rather than doctrinal. I think reference to them can be helpful at times, but I do not think they should be placed on a par with Scripture. Much of the error I run into stems directly from books about the Bible, rather than Books of the Bible, which is where we should devote our time.

    God bless.
     
  13. Yeshua1

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    Starnge that he would say that, as Job was perhaps first recorded book, at time of Abraham, and there were angels alreadying in there, correct?
     
  14. Baptist Believer

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    Not angels, "sons of God" - see Job 1:6 and 2:1. The satan (adversary/accuser/prosecutor) is not identified as an angel. Moreover, contrary to many English translations, the "satan" does not have a proper name. It is a descriptive word, often transliterated - instead of translated - into English as "the satan" or "Satan."
     

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