Why Did Martin Luther Remove Inspired Books From The Bible
It was by the apostolic Tradition that the Church discerned which writings are to be included in the list of the sacred books.
Amid all the damage Martin Luther did in rending the body of Christ, perhaps his most deeply ingrained legacy is his shortened canon of Scriptures.
Many people seem to believe Catholics added books to the Bible. They dont seem to realize that Luther removed seven entire books and parts of three others from it for no other reason than that they didnt fit his idea of what God really wanted. Luther claimed they celebrated Judaism and because he wanted to justify his challenging the authority of the Catholic Church, he threw them out.
The Protestant Bible consists of only 66 books 39 books in the Old Testament and 27 books in the New Testament. The Catholic settled upon in the 4th century is contains 73 books including Tobias, Judith, Wisdom, Sirach , Baruch, and 1 and 2 Maccabees what Protestants call the Apocrypha.
In fact, Luthers first German translation was missing 25 books , Baruch, 1 and 2 Maccabees, Matthew, Luke, John, Acts, Romans, Hebrews, James, Jude and Revelation. He referred to the Epistle of James as straw not worthy to be burned in my oven as tinder. The rest he called Judaizing nonsense. Subsequent Protestants, deciding that Luther wasnt really inspired by the Holy Spirit, replaced most of the books he had removed.
Chapters And Verses Of The Bible
The chapter and verse divisions did not appear in the original texts they form part of the paratext of the Bible. Since the early 13th century, most copies and editions of the Bible present all but the shortest of these books with divisions into chapters, generally a page or so in length. Since the mid-16th century editors have further subdivided each chapter into verses each consisting of a few short lines or sentences. Esther 8:9 is the longest verse in the Bible. Sometimes a sentence spans more than one verse, as in the case of Ephesians 2:89, and sometimes there is more than one sentence in a single verse, as in the case of Genesis 1:2.
The Jewish divisions of the Hebrew text differ at various points from those used by Christians. For instance, in Jewish tradition, the ascriptions to many Psalms are regarded as independent verses or parts of the subsequent verses, whereas established Christian practice treats each Psalm ascription as independent and unnumbered, making 116 more verses in Jewish versions than in the Christian. Some chapter divisions also occur in different places, e.g. Hebrew Bibles have 1 Chronicles 5:27-41 where Christian translations have 1 Chronicles 6:1-15
Why Does The Roman Catholic Church Accept The Books Of The Old Testament Apocrypha As Holy Scripture
Are Some Books Missing from the Old Testament? Question 4
Roman Catholicism and Protestantism are not in agreement as to the exact limits of Old Testament Scripture. Protestants believe and teach that there are only thirty-nine books that makeup the Old Testament. Roman Catholicism, however, teaches that the Old Testament consists of these thirty-nine books as well as seven additional books. Furthermore, the Roman Church also teaches that two books of the Old Testament, Daniel and Esther, have longer sections in them which Protestants delete. These additions are called the deuterocanonical books, or second canon books, by Roman Catholics and the Old Testament Apocrypha by Protestants. Roman Catholics call them deuterocanonical books, not because they are inferior to the proto-canonical, or first canon books, but rather because their status was decided later in history.
Who is correct? Which books belong in the Old Testament as part of Holy Scripture? Why does Roman Catholicism believe these additional books, and parts of books, constitute sacred Scripture that have been wrongly deleted by Protestants?
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Which Septuagint Which Deuterocanonical Books
So weve only talked about the 7 books that the Catholic Church uses. However, they arent the only deuterocanonical books. The full list of books regarded as a second canon is a lot longer.
- 1 Esdras
- 2 Esdras
- 4 Maccabees
- Psalm 151
The Catholic Church only recognizes 7 of these, but some denominations recognize more. . However, The three earliest Greek manuscripts dont contain those exact 7. They contain only some of the list. Notice the books below in red? Those books arent considered canon by the Catholic Church OR Protestants.
So theres no help from the extant copies of the Bible to support those exact 7. This doesnt meant he Catholics are wrong about those exact 7, but it does mean theres very little manuscript support for those exact 7.
How the Jews view the Deuterocanonical books
What Name Is Given To The Eight Extra Books Included In The Catholic Bible
The deuterocanonical books are books and passages considered by the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Oriental Orthodox Churches and the Assyrian Church of the East to be canonical books of the Old Testament but which are considered non-canonical
Also Know, what are the 7 books of the Catholic Bible? Seven books of the Bible, all in the Old Testament, are accepted by Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox, but are not accepted by Jews or Protestants. These include 1 and 2 Maccabees, Judith, Tobit, Baruch, Sirach, and Wisdom, and additions to the books of Esther and Daniel.
Additionally, how is the Catholic Bible different from the Protestant Bible?
“I would say that the main difference is that the Catholic Bible includes more wisdom books,” Collins said. “And wisdom is associated with natural theology, and that has been one of the major theological differences between Protestants and Catholics. Protestants generally reject natural theology.”
What are the parts of the Catholic Bible?
- Torah : Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy.
- Historical books : Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 Samuel, 2 Samuel, 1 Kings, 2 Kings, 1 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Tobit, Judith, Esther, 1 Maccabees, 2 Maccabees.
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The Plain And Simple Truth About The 73 Books Of The Catholic Bible 2/06/2021christianity9 Comments
And when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the temple, and saying, Hosanna to the son of David they were sore displeased, And said unto him, Hearest thou what these say? And Jesus saith unto them, Yea have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise?
Why Did Martin Luther Remove 7 Books From The Bible
He tried to remove more than 7. He wanted to make the Bible conform to his theology. Even if it meant removing books, he decided to remove Hebrews James and Jude from the New Testament because they were not compatible with his teaching that salvation is by faith alone.
What is the reason why Protestants deleted certain books from the Catholic Bible? They didnt remove anything. Protestants omitted the Old Testament texts that Jews did not include.
You may also wonder, What are the seven additional books in the Catholic Bible? These are the Deuterocanonical Books. These are Tobit, Judith, and 1 Maccabees and 2 Maccabees. Wisdom of Solomon and Wisdom of Sirach are also included.
Also, find out which books Martin Luther wanted to get rid of.
Luther attempted to remove Hebrews James and Jude from the Canon . However, Luthers followers didnt generally accept Luthers judgment on this matter.
Is Martin Luther a Christian?
Luther started translating the New Testament from Greek to German while being held captive in Wartburg Castle . He used Erasmus second edition of the Greek New to translate the Greek text.
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What Difference Does Language Make
If you are a Christian, rejecting books based on their language doesnt make as much sense. Jesus spoke Aramaic, the New Testament was written in Greek, and weve already discussed the apostles use of the Septuagint. Books of the Bible were originally recorded in Aramaic, and mostly Greek and Hebrew, depending on their authorship. Its part of what makes the Bible so unique and inspired. God speaks all languages. Its the content, which was the basis of discussion when Christians accepted books as Sacred Scripture, thats important.
And not just language, but translation!
People twist Scripture for their own agenda too often, but this is not just in canon-picking but also in the various translations and interpretations of Sacred Scripture. Finding a trustworthy canon and translation is so important.
Some translations diverge wildly from the original intent of their authors, and certain books arent included in the Bible because they are gnostic heresy. As Catholics, we are lucky to have the Church guide us with the knowledge of tradition and scholarship that we ourselves might otherwise not have!
What Books Did Martin Luther Remove From The Bible And Why
The omission of these books from the canon has been attributed to a number of factors, including their support for Catholic doctrines such as Purgatory and Prayer for the Dead found in 2 Maccabees, and the Westminster Confession of Faith of 1646, which effectively excluded them from the canon during the English Civil War.
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Ist Churches And Moravian Churches
The first Methodist liturgical book, The Sunday Service of the Methodists, employs verses from the biblical apocrypha, such as in the Eucharistic liturgy.
The Revised Common Lectionary, in use by most mainline Protestants including Methodists and Moravians, lists readings from the biblical apocrypha in the liturgical kalendar, although alternate Old Testament scripture lessons are provided.
What Is The Septuagint
The Septuagint is a translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek. There is a legend surrounding its creation/translation and few people would take it literally. However as with many legends there is probably a core of truth among its fantastical claims.
The legend goes like this:
King Ptolemy II Philadelphus of Egypt who reigned from 283 BC to 246 BC wanted a copy of the Hebrew Law for the library at Alexandria. However, since Greek was the predominant language of the day, he wanted a Greek translation. Therefore Aristeas one of his courtiers composed a letter to the High Priest in Jerusalem.
The letter arrived in at the temple in Jerusalem along with an envoy and lavish gifts. The High Priest then chooses 72 men to do the translating work. When the translators arrive back in Alexandria, they were greeted with 7 days of feasting. During the feast, Ptolemy II asked them many difficult questions and they answered wisely.
Then the translation began. According to the legend, each of the 72 translators was put in a separate room to translate the Hebrew Law . They all finished the translation exactly 72 days later. When all of their translations were compared, they were found to be word-perfect identical to each other.
That was the Septuagint.
Thats the legend, and I do think its based on historical events.
I highly doubt the word-perfect portion of the legend, but the basic story is likely true. We cant be certain, but its quite likely.
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Question: Extra Books In The Bible
An article by Charles Johnston
Full Question by anonymous:
Why did the Catholic Church add extra books to the Bible? Why do Catholic Bibles have more books? I heard they were added at the Council of Trent, is this true?Answer:
Let me explain a few things before I get into this one.
The simple answer is that the Catholic Church didnt add anything to the Bible, it was the Reformers that removed seven books and parts of a few others.Their reasoning depended on who was doing the reasoning, but they generally it was one of the following reasons.
- They were written in Greek and not Hebrew, so they couldnt be part of the Jewish canon.
Tobit and Wisdom were found among the Dead Sea scrolls in their original Hebrew. This would refute the idea that they were all originally written in Greek.
Finally Some Advice If Youre Feeling Put On The Defensive As A Catholic:
My best advice on how to respond when asked why did Catholics add books to the Bible is to ask a more accurate question: Why dont all Christians have them? Dont you feel like youre missing something, especially considering the history and theology? And, ask these in a charitable mannerdont go attacking others, even if they attack your canon. Just defend.
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Evidence The Deuterocanon Should Be In The Bible
Following are the strongest and most common reason Catholics cite that the Deuterocanon should be in the Bible.
Jesus and the Apostles quoted and/or alluded to the Deuterocanon
Yes they absolutely did
but they also quoted other books of the day that no one considers to be Canon. Wikipedia has a whole article about Non-Cannon books referenced by the Bible. Like writers today, the Bible authors alluded to popular works of the day to make a point.
The Bible references a LOT of different non-cannon works.
David Erwert said in his Book A General Introduction to the Bible: From Ancient Tablets to Modern Translations:
Nestles Greek NT lists some 132 NT passages that appear to be verbal allusions to paracononical books, but that that is the kind of thing we would expect. Writers living at a given period in history tend to reflect the current language of the day.
Further, The New Testament writers also quote and reference a few Pagan books.
This is not evidence of anything by itself. Its merely to say that just because the Bible quotes another book, that doesnt make the other book inspired.
Its also worth noting that none of the references or allusions to the Deuterocanon are proceeded by As it is written or a similar statement. Again, this isnt evidence of anything per say, but it doesnt mean you cannot use quotes by Jesus or the Apostles to prove the authority of the Dueterocanon.
Sage words indeed, and they apply here.
Why do we assume that?
Are There New Testament References To The Deuterocanonical Books
Yes, the apostles DO reference the deuterocanonical books, and if you were to take out books of the Bible based on that reasoning, youd also need to remove books included in the Protestant Old Testament canon. So thats not a valid reason for rejecting the deuterocanonical books.
- Ecclesiastes, Esther, and 1 Chronicles arent referenced in the New Testament.
- 1 and 2 Maccabees, Wisdom, and Sirach are referenced and/or alluded to in the New Testament.
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What About The Hebrew Bible And Jewish Belief
Judaism decided on its canon in the first century AD although, much like Christians, they had been using a Bible long before then. Theres a lot more in history, such as the decision at the Jewish Council of Jamnia to officially canonize the Hebrew Bible, but overall it can be said that the deuterocanonical books are considered sacred even in Jewish tradition, even though not a part of the Hebrew Bible.
Christians used the deuterocanonical books from their beginnings because they were part of the , which was used by the apostles, Early Church Fathers, and even Jews before the time of Christ. The Septuagint was a Greek version of the Hebrew Bible, which was translated for Jews when the Greeks had Hellenized much of the area. Early Christians, who were mostly Greek-speaking, opted for the Septuagint for its use of the Greek language, not for any theological preferences or animus against the deuterocanonical books.
The Catholic canon was approved at councils of the Early Church and by saints. With all that comes much credibility. The Catholic canon is not a willy-nilly, pick-and-choose for your own personal church its a sacred collection of divinely-inspired writings that guide the life of Catholics universally as it did the apostles.
Read more about the Council of Hippo, Council of Nicea, and especially the Council of Trent when the Church officially declared its canon.
What Books Of The Catholic Bible Do Protestants Reject
Protestants reject the deuterocanonical books of the Old Testament as being not divinely inspired. Although Martin Luther and other Reformation leaders also rejected the New Testament deuterocanon, they ultimately retained these New Testament books in the Protestant version of the Bible.
Luther and other Protestant leaders rejected many Church teachings and Traditions. Their rejection of the deuterocanonical books allowed them to claim that the disputed doctrines had no basis in Scripture â their new canon of Scripture!
has two excellent articles about this topic. The first describes how the canon of the books of the Catholic Bible was defined. The second article describes this history in more detail, including Lutherâs use of the term Apocrypha to cast a bad light on the Old Testament deuterocanon.)
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