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Books of the Second Canon/The Apocrypha or Deuterocanonical Books


Chapter 9 Books of the Second Canon/The Apocrypha or Deuterocanonical Books – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Books of the Second Canon/The Apocrypha or Deuterocanonical Books

Chapter 9
  • Books of the Second Canon/The Apocrypha or
    Deuterocanonical Books

Reading Ch. 9, Books of the Second Canon/The
Apocrypha, pp. 284-307 in the Textbook.
  • Books of the Second Canon
  • The Hebrew Bible closes with the Books of
  • The Rabbis (ca. 90 A.D.) decided not to
    recognize as authoritative about 14 books that
    had been included in the Septuagint, that is, the
    Greek version of the Jewish scriptures
  • The early Christian community, which used the
    Greek edition of the Hebrew Bible, regarded these
    14 books as Deuterocanonical, i.e., belonging to
    a Second Canon

  • Books of the Second Canon
  • Today, Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox Bibles
    place some of these books among the Prophets
    (Neviim) and Writings (Kethuvim)
  • See Textbook, pp. 4-5 and Table 9.1, p. 285.
  • Following the Protestant Reformation in the 16th
    and 17th centuries, most Protestant editions of
    the Bible either omit Deuterocanonical books or
    relegate them to a separate unit between the Old
    and New Testaments
  • Thus, in some Protestant editions of the Bible,
    these books are called the Apocrypha
  • See your edition of the Bible.

  • See The New Revised Standard Version of the
  • See Table 9.1 Deuterocanonical (Apocryphal
    Books) (p. 285 in Textbook).

  • In the Writings (Kethuvim), books such as
    Esther, Ezra, and Nehemiah give a generally
    favorable picture of Persian rule (see, Table
    3.1 Some Major Events pp. 42-44 in
  • Persian Emperors generally tended to support
    Judean causes
  • during the period of the Persian Empire, the
    Jewish people enjoyed two centuries of peace and
    stability (from ca. 539-330 BC)

  • Alexanders Conquests and the Hellenistic World
  • However, the situation changed in the fourth
    century B.C. when a new world conqueror burst
    onto the international scene
  • This emperor was Alexander of Macedonia (356-323
    B.C.) (See, Table 3.1, pp. 42-44 in textbook)
  • Alexander rapidly conquered the Persian empire
  • He created the largest empire the world had yet
  • See Figure 9.1 (p. 286) map of Alexanders
    empire (323 BC).

(No Transcript)
Alexander the Greats Defeat of Darius III (see
textbook, fig. 9.2, p. 286).

Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great
The Empire of Alexander the Great
  • Alexanders Conquests and the Hellenistic World
  • Alexander brought Greek language, art,
    literature, philosophy, and social customs to the
    subjects of his vast empire
  • For the first time in history, a European power
    dominated the older Near Eastern and Indian
    centers of civilization (see Figure 9.1, p. 286)
  • Alexander died before he could carry out his
    presumed goal

  • Alexanders most important successors
  • Ptolemy I he founded a dynasty that ruled Egypt
    for three centuries capital at Alexandria ruled
    Judea until 199 B.C.E
  • Seleucus his descendants ruled Syria.
  • See figure 9.1 (p. 286, in Textbook).
  • Alexanders successors presided over a new
    international culture known as Hellenistic, a
    mixture of the classical Greek (Hellenic)
    civilization with the older cultures of the Near

  • The Hellenistic synthesis produced a creative
    flowering of Greek and oriental motifs in
    religion, philosophy, and the creative arts
  • The Hellenistic epoch chronologically overlaps
    the period of Roman expansion and the early
    Christian centuries (see, Table 3.1, pp. 42-44 in

  • Judaism and Hellenistic Assimilation
  • Israels religion had originally developed in a
    small arena
  • After Alexanders conquests, however, Judeans
    were forced to cope with life in a much larger
    and more culturally complex environment
  • A cosmopolitan outlook emerged
  • A breaking down of national barriers
  • An integration of Greek with other ethnic
  • As a result, many Jews became Hellenized.

  • The Deuterocanonical Books and Covenant Peoples
    Encounter with Hellenism
  • For some authors, a peaceful coexistence between
    Hellenistic culture and the practice of authentic
    Jewish religion (see, e.g., The Book of Tobit and
    the Book of Wisdom)
  • In sharp contrast, the Books of Maccabees show
    faithful Jews heroically resisting the imposition
    of Hellenization here, Hellenistic culture is
    seen as a threat to the covenant peoples
    religious identity and purpose

  • The Book of Daniel, an apocalyptic work,
    pictures human history as a series of Gentile
    empires that repeatedly attempt to compromise the
    faith of pious Jews
  • (Why treat the Book of Daniel here? See,
    Textbook, p. 285 Box 9.1.)

  • Canonical and Deuterocanonical Books
  • First, Antiochus IV, a Greek-Syrian king (see,
    Table 3.1, p. 43 and Table 9.2., p. 291 in
  • He attempts to eradicate Judaism
  • The Maccabean revolt begins
  • 1 and 2 Maccabees depict Anthiochus attack on
  • They record a major shift in Israels religious
  • Jews find themselves battling a foreign power
    not to defend their state militarily but to
    defend their religion

  • The Assyrians, Babylonians, and Persians had
    permitted the people of Judea to worship Yahweh
    and to keep the Torah
  • Antiochus, on the other hand, deliberately set
    out to destroy Judaism
  • He made loyalist Jews suffer for their faith
  • Thus, the great tribulation of which the Book
    of Daniel speaks
  • the first saints and martyrs in a line of Jewish
    and Christian religious heroes who kept their
    integrity unto death

  • The Book of Daniel depicts Antiochus
    persecution as marking the climatic consummation
    of history
  • This depicted in Daniels eschatological visions

  • Books covering Antiochus persecution and the
    rise of Apocalyptic writing
  • 1 Maccabees a historical account of the Jewish
    revolt against the oppression of the Syrian King
    Antiochus IV
  • 2 Maccabees a vivid elaboration of the
    persecution and tortures that Antiochus IV
    inflicted on Jewish martyrs
  • See Figure 9.3, p. 290 Map of Palestine in the
    Maccabean period (ca. 168-63 B.C.E)

Map of Maccabean Period.
  • Books covering Antiochus persecution and the
    rise of Apocalyptic writing (contd.)
  • Daniel a canonical work, written during the
    persecution of Antiochus IV, that combines
    quasi-historical narrative and apocalyptic
    visions of end time
  • Additions to Daniel

  • Other Deuterocanonical Writings (Books of the
  • Tobit a short story set at the time of the
    Assyrian empire but reflecting Jewish life in the
    later Diaspora
  • Judith a fictional romance that highlights
    dangers threatening Diaspora Jews
  • Additions to Esther prayers, etc. added to the
    Canonical Book
  • Baruch a narrative about Jews living in foreign

  • Other Deuterocanonical Writings (Books of the
    Apocrypha) (contd.)
  • Ecclesiasticus or Wisdom of Jesus Ben Sirach
    proverbial wisdom and ethical advice to Jewish
    students, written by a Jewish sage ca. 180 B.C.E
  • Wisdom of Solomon a wisdom book combining
    traditional Jewish and Hellenistic ideas,
    composed during the first century B.C.E.

  • Apocalyptic Literature and the Book of Daniel
  • Apocalyptic
  • From the Greek Apokalypsis
  • Meaning an unveiling, an uncovering, a
    stripping naked of what is normally hidden
  • As a literary category, an apocalypse means a
    revelation of dimensions or events ordinarily
    closed to human view, e.g., the invisible realm
    of heaven, or the future course of history
  • In the Hebrew Bible, only Daniel is a fully
    apocalyptic work

  • Apocalyptic Literature and The Book Of Daniel
  • Apocalyptic elements in Isaiah 6.1-12 and
    Zechariah 3.1-10
  • See also, Isaiah 24-27, Ezekiel 30, 37-39, and
    Zechariah 9-14
  • The New Testament (NT) Book of Revelation is
    apocalyptic literature
  • Much of the NT is permeated with apocalyptic
  • See, e.g., Mark 13, Matthew 24, Luke 21, and 1
    and 2 Thessalonians and 1 Corinthians.

  • Eschatological Concerns
  • Apocalyptic literature is typically concerned
    with eschatology
  • Speculations about last things, such as the
    final consummation of history, the prophetic day
    of Yahweh
  • The ultimate fate of individual persons, e.g.,
    death, posthumous judgment, heaven, hell, and
  • The belief in the resurrection of the body is a
    by-product of the apocalyptic movement (Dan

  • The authors of the Torah and the Former Prophets
    showed little or no interest in eschatological
  • During the last three centuries B.C.E., the
    situation changed when apocalyptic speculation
    reached its height.

  • Apocalyptic Writings
  • Commonly arise during times of persecution and
  • They are a response to severe persecution or to
    that which threaten a groups welfare
  • Daniel and Revelation composed to encourage
    their respective audience to remain faithful
    before the threat of state persecution
  • They tell of the persecutors certain doom
  • Rekindle hopes of future blessedness.

  • Apocalyptic Literature and the Book Of Daniel
  • The Book of Daniel
  • Written to encourage Jewish Torah loyalists
    during the persecutions of Antiochus IV (mid-2nd
    century B.C.)
  • Assures readers that even though Israel is
    scattered and oppressed by Gentile powers, its
    God still controls all nations
  • the book is a two-part drama of supernatural

  • Part 1 (Chs. 1-6)
  • The book portrays Daniel, one of
    Nebuchadnezzars court magicians, and his three
    young friends as scrupulous Torah observers whom
    God miraculously rescues from unjust punishment
  • Part 2 (Chs. 7-12)
  • A series of apocalyptic visions surveying the
    rise and fall of Near Eastern empires, from
    Babylon to the Hellenistic states of Syria and
    Egypt, that dominated Palestine in the authors

  • Book Of Daniel (contd.)
  • Book ends by predicting public vindication and
    the physical resurrection of the wise who
    remained faithful under persecution (see 12.13
    see also 12.2 earliest clear enunciation of
    belief in the resurrection)
  • The book was written ca. 167-164 B.C.E. when
    Jews were suffering intense persecution by
    Antiochus IV
  • It is chronologically the latest written book in
    the Hebrew Bible.

  • Additions to the Book of Daniel
  • The Greek version of Daniel contains three long
    poetic and narrative units not found in the
    Hebrew canon
  • The Song of the Three Holy Children (3.24-90 in
    Catholic Bible Editions)
  • Susanna (The Jerusalem Bible includes it as Ch.
  • Bel and the Dragon (usually appended as Ch. 14).

Three Faithful Hebrew Youths Shadrach, Meshach,
and Abednego.
Daniel 3.1-30 see especially 3.25.
Questions 1. How does the canon of Hebrew
Scripture end? By whom and when was the decision
made as to what books were to be considered
authoritative for Jews? 2. What was the
practice of the early Christian community
relative to a number of books that were contained
in the Greek edition of the Hebrew Bible? What
did the community call these books? Where are
some of these books placed in Roman Catholic and
Greek Orthodox Bibles? 3. When did Protestants
decide to omit from their editions of the Bible
certain books that are contained in the Greek
edition of the Hebrew Bible? Why? What do
Protestants call these books and why?
4. Describe the situation of the Jewish people
under the Persian Empire. How and when did this
situation change? 5. Describe some of the
changes that the conquests of Alexander the Great
brought to the Near East and, in particular, to
Palestine. 6. Describe the situation of the Jews
of Palestine in the centuries immediately
following the death of Alexander the Great. 7.
What is meant by the expression Hellenism? 8.
How do the Deuterocanonical books depict the
covenant peoples encounters with Hellenism? 9.
Describe how 1 and 2 Maccabees depict Antiochus
attack on Judaism. How does the Book of Daniel
depict the same attack?
10. List and give a short description of the
Deuterocanonical books. 11. What is meant by
apocalyptic literature? What is the best example
in the Hebrew Bible of this type of literature?
Where are other examples of apocalyptic
literature found in the Hebrew Bible? What are
examples of apocalyptic literature in the New
Testament? 12. Apocalyptic literature is
typically concerned with eschatology. What is
meant by this statement? 13. Explain the origin
of apocalyptic literature. 14. Describe the Book
of Daniel under the headings a) purpose b)
major divisions c) time of writing and d)
additions that are not found in the Hebrew
Bible. PEACE!
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