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What differs between Catholic Bibles and Protestant Bibles is the Old Testament. Their Greek canon of Scripture — Septuagint (Deuterocanon) — contained the equivalent of forty-six books. Check it with real history books and see for yourself. The Catholic Bible contains a total of 73 books, 46 in the Old Testament (Protestant Bibles have 39) and 27 in the New Testament (the same as Protestant Bibles). As Fr. However, this ignores the historical fact that, in the first century AD, Jews were in disagreement about the size of the Jewish canon depending on what party they belonged to. Broken link? which consisted roughly of the thirty-nine (39) books Western Jews use today, as well as what we see in the Protestant Old Testament. Finally, there was a very large number of Jews living in diaspora around the Mediterranean world. The books in the Vulgate were simply seen as the consensus of the early Church. Some protestants believe that the Catholic Church added 7 books to the Bible at the Council of Trent in response to Luther’s Reformation, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Some Christians don’t spend a whole lot of time reading the Old Testament anyway, and focus primarily on the New Testament instead. Everyone had to know at least enough Greek to get by, and if you wanted any reasonable success in this ancient world, you had to be a proficient speaker of it. In the sixteenth century, the council of Trent decided that the books known as the apocrypha among the Protestants were 'deuterocanonical'. Why do Catholic Bibles have a longer Old Testament than Protestant Bibles? Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. You can read Shane’s blog entries at Complete-Christianity.Com. And, t… I assert that all of the scholarly academic opinions in the world do not justify removing books from the Old Testament that all Christians had used for fifteen centuries! Previous Why Do Good People Go To Hell? October 16th and 17th (in the post- and pre-conciliar liturgical calendars, respectively) mark the feast of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque…. Video. That’s the cold, hard, historical truth. I can say that with confidence because I know my history, and I know history will back up what I’m saying. Again, look it up in any history book on the topic and see for yourself. The longer Old Testament script is simply to “cover all the bases” which isn’t a bad thing at all, but in the West, Rome likes to settle these issues definitively. Why Does the Catholic Bible Have More Books? Mutual Enrichment Why False Modesty Has a Deadly Allure – Stephen Mirarchi, epicPew Why Does the Catholic Bible Have More Books? View all posts by Shane Schaetzel, Thank you for this post. Simple. Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. The Jewish elders who translated it were aware of the disputes that existed over the various versions of the Jewish canon back in Palestine. Or does that authority belong to the apostles and the bishops of the early Church? A good deal of my Evangelical Protestant faith was built on propaganda back in the 1990s, and it was my study of history that changed that. Anyway, the list of objections goes on and on — ad infinitum — but what it really comes down to is this. Photo Credit: Nathan Dumlau / Unsplash.com. Catholic Bibles are known to have more books than Protestant Bibles, and there is a very good reason for this. This is what happened to me. Christians used the deuterocanonical books from their beginnings because they were part of the Septuagint, which was used by the apostles, Early Church Fathers, and even Jews before the time of Christ. Christians are sometimes wholly unaware that this difference exists, completely misled as to why there is a difference, or confident that their particular canon of books is undoubtedly the original. No, these books are NOT gnostic gospels you may have heard about. one waits, hopes…the door is shut and can be…, My Jesus, by the pain You did endure when Your Left hand was pierced with the nail, give me true…. This is because Roman Catholics have 7 additional books in their Old Testament: Tobit, Judith, 1-2 Maccabees, Wisdom of Solomon, Sirach, and Baruch. So that’s not a valid reason for rejecting the deuterocanonical books. Chronologically, Protestants took books out, not Catholics putting books in. I’m not going to direct you to certain booklets or tracts. Every Christian, regardless if Catholic or Protestant, deserves access to ALL of the Scriptures.”, Of course, one could also note that the canon of the Latin church is deficient for want of 3 Esdras, 3 Maccabees, Psalm 151, or the Prayer of Manasseh. The purpose of this Greek translated Deuterocanon, was the same purpose that all translations serve — to make the text more available to a larger number of people. To understand, we have to go back in history — way back — to the first and second century AD, to the time of Jesus and the apostles. The same goes for everything I’m about to write below. Protestants) were hiding underground. When shopping for a Bible, I recommend looking for one that contains the “Apocrypha” or “Deuterocanon” books. It is true that there are some additional books (such as 3 & 4 Maccabees) which are commonly (but not necessarily formally) found in modern, published Eastern Orthodox Old Testaments. It was called the Septuagint (meaning “seventy” in reference to the alleged seventy rabbinical elders who translated it). Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window), Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window), Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window), Are Catholics Christian? The only people who should ever call the Middle Ages “dark” are Atheists and Pagans, because it was during this time that their kind was the most marginalized. Why is that? Of course this is ridiculous, but you would be surprised to learn how many people actually believe this nonsense. Read as many as you can! Bible means “book,” and it is a collection of books from different lands, authors, languages and historical periods, a text by which to pass on our faith. It was the Law of Moses — or Torah — the first five books of the Bible. The canon of Scripture primarily used by the apostles was the Greek-translated Septuagint (Deuterocanon). Anti-Catholics would have you to read certain historical tracts of booklets that they have prepared for you in advance. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! : A Guide to Evangelical Questions about the Catholic Church, Catholics and Evangelicals Together in the 21st Century, http://www.catholicbridge.com/orthodox/why-orthodox-bible-is-different-from-catholic.php, Follow Complete Christianity on WordPress.com. It wasn’t considered a mere translation. First, it’s important to note that the New Testament of the Bible is exactly the same between Catholics and Protestants. No, these books are NOT gnostic gospels you may have heard about. Catholics have 73 books of the Bible; Protestants have 66. The Catholic Church didn’t add books. I think that’s a fair accommodation. The strange thing about the Protestant attitude is that they acknowledge the events in these books but deny that they are religious or theological in an authoritative way. BQSA Can a Christian Be Perfect? The rabbis of the first century considered it to have equal authority as the Hebrew and Aramaic versions. The apostles, likewise, acted upon Jesus’ teaching, and had no problem ministering to Greek-speaking Jewish synagogues during their missionary journeys. There’s 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. Apparently, it was the early Church fathers who heavily influenced what books would be in the Bible and what books would be rejected. Rather, there is some confusion among Eastern Orthodox as to which books properly constitute the canon of the Bible. As to why the Catholics have more books, it is a matter of ecclesiastical history. The USCCB recommends the New American or the Revised Standard Version for English translations. Please share it! Of course, this really isn’t a big issue for some Christians. We can speculate about Martin Luther’s reasons. My question is, if the Septuagint (Deuterocanon) was good enough for the apostles and early Church, with its additional seven books and all, then why is it not good enough for us today? Protestant Bibles have only 39 books in the Old Testament, however, while Catholic Bibles have 46. So let’s get back to the Bible. May I suggest choosing a non-abridged version? In other words, the Jewish elders who translated these Scriptures from Hebrew and Aramaic into Greek didn’t just translate the words, but they translated their meaning as well, including common interpretations and understandings of how these passages were to be understood from an ancient Jewish perspective. So much for the “Hebrew only” objection. During this time there were many different versions of Scripture being used by the Jewish people. Happy reading! Suffice it to say, late first-century Judaism was in chaos. Get To Know The Young People Of The Bible, 6 Things You Didn’t Know About St. Augustine, Discernment: God Will Tell You When To Turn. This year, let’s focus on each devotion month-by-month to…, Many believe that the Middles Ages were Dark Ages, a black abyss that divided the classical Greek and Roman antiquity…, The Sign of the Cross is the most common Catholic prayer. The Pharisees looked down upon Greek-speaking Jews, and used the reference “Hellenist” in a rather derogatory way toward them. Jesus was a Jew who spoke Aramaic and lived in Palestine, but his ministry was not limited to Palestinian Jews alone. Common points of confusion (and resources to answer them): Anyone who believes in a sacred text should have good reason to trust it. Those typically cited are Saint Athanasius and Saint Jerome, who translated the Scriptures from Greek and Hebrew/Aramaic into Latin. We’ll take a look at that today. History is what it is. Let’s just get that straight right away. Does that authority belong to a handful of 16th century Protestant theologians? The Catholic bible has 73 books, the Protestant only 66. We love your feedback! (Hellenism was a reference to Greek influence on the ancient world.) Then there were the Esseans, who were an obscure Jewish party that lived in virtual isolation in Palestine. People taught the faith to each other through tradition, and most books were passed on orally long before being written down. I’ll explain below. How do we answer people who are confident that Catholics have added books unnecessarily? Most importantly, do they belong in the Bible? Shane is the author of "Are Catholics Christian?" BQSA Are We Saints or Sinners? The first Protestant to remove books from the Old Testament canon was none other than Martin Luther, the “father” of the Reformation himself. Lastly, we close out talking about another podcast to watch out for in the coming months from us here at The Wayfinder Network. So let’s get back to the Bible. (As if God only speaks in Hebrew. Were those 7 books removed by the Protestants, or added by the Catholics? They are solely the opinions of the blogger, who is a faithful and orthodox Catholic. The short answer is simply this. 6 Historical & Theological Arguments, The Best Scriptural Evidence For Saintly Intercession That You Probably Don’t Know About, RSV Ignatius Catholic Study Bible Old Testament and New Testament. Prior to Martin Luther (16th century), all Christians used the longer forty-six book Old Testament. George puts it, “Mass is where the meat is” and oftentimes this is…, God come to my assistance, Lord make haste to help me. They lived as far south as Egypt and Ethiopia, as far west as Spain, as far East as Iraq and at least as far north as Rome. Yes, the apostles DO reference the deuterocanonical books, and if you were to take out books of the Bible based on that reasoning, you’d also need to remove books included in the Protestant Old Testament canon. It’s the Old Testament where the differences are, and it’s the Holy Spirit-inspired Early Church fathers, Church councils, and Sacred Tradition that led us to preserve what is now the Catholic canon of Scripture. That being settled, all we have left is Saint Athansius, who was an excellent scholar on determining authentic New Testament Scripture, but apparently missed the mark on the Old Testament. The difference between the Catholic and Protestant Bibles specifically centers around the Old Testament and the Old Testament alone. For example; the Sadducee Party, who mainly consisted of the priests of the Jerusalem Temple, had the shortest Biblical canon of all, consisting of just five (5) books. In general, there was only the Catholic bible canon until Martin Luther started the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century. The authority to determine the canon of Scripture rests in the apostles and their successors (bishops), not in individual Saints. It didn’t take but a couple history books to learn that much of what I believed as “solid doctrine” will riddled with holes. Ecclesiastes, Esther, and 1 Chronicles (undisputed OT books) aren’t referenced in the New Testament. I say go down to your nearest library, and find some books on the development of the Christian canon of Scripture. That’s it! He was the Messiah for all Jewish people, regardless of what language they spoke. The Catholic Church didn’t add books. This is my first message I hope you can help me with this : My husband is Catholic and he has the Catholic Bible but he could not answer this question I have been reading it and I have a question. In fact, these same Ethiopian Jews still use the forty-six (46) book Septuagint (Deuterocanon) as their Bible to this very day. Anonymous answered . Why the Catholic Bible has More Books. Now those were the real “dark ages!” The only other “dark age” is our own time, wherein Christian martyrdom has never been higher, and the Christendom created by our ancestors is eclipsed by the functional atheism of the New World Order (communism and globalism). Protestants have shorter Old Testaments because the leaders of the Protestant Reformation removed books from the Old Testament. You have reached the end of this Article Preview To continue reading, subscribe now. Unfortunately, many Christians uncritically accept the lie that the Catholic Church added 7 books, which doesn’t square with the evidence. For more on this topic, see Christian History Issue 43: How We Got Our Bible. The destruction of the Temple created such a spiritual vacuum that it’s difficult to express in words. This list was finally approved by Pope Damasus I in 382 AD, and was formally approved by the Church Council of Rome in that same year. In this way, every Christian has the Bible first from God, Who inspired its authors, but also thanks to Sacred Tradition (and the Catholic Church) which preserved the canon. They themselves are not infallible, and that is why we have a whole Church community to guide us to God. Now that we have established the historical fact that the Protestant “reformers” removed books from the Old Testament, the question begs to be asked — why? Roman Catholic Bibles have 73 books rather than 66. Then we examine the reason that the Catholic bible has seven more books than the Protestant bible. Please let us know. Luther opposed the doctrine of Purgatory in his famous “Ninety-Five Thesis,” and so any Scripture passage that could be interpreted to support this doctrine had to be eliminated. The term was applied to books taught only to those who were considered wise or learned. Not me! Why Should an Evangelical Become Catholic? Did Catholics 'add' seven extra books to the Bible or did Protestants remove them? Contrary to popular belief, there was no “Council of Jamnia” as has been reported in years past. Don’t believe me? Permission to copy and redistribute can be obtained simply by contacting the blogger. Catholic-Link is a Catholic portal full of resources for the New Evangelization. He didn’t like what they supported, and they supported Catholic teaching (i.e. It’s highly recommended by priests and catechists alike. Why Catholic Bibles are Bigger (Amazon affiliate link) by Gary G. Michuta (Revised Second Edition), A great video of Gary Michuta on EWTN Catholic Answers. Next Why Doesn’t God Save Everyone? They surmise that the original Hebrew/Aramaic Tanakh (Protocanon) must be more accurate, because after all, it is older. The historical truth is, the Catholic Church never “added any books” to the Bible, and incidentally, the Medieval period was neither “dark” nor “scary.” It was the cradle of Western Civilization that saw the greatest development of art, culture and civility the human race has ever known. The Catholic canon is not a willy-nilly, pick-and-choose for your own personal church; it’s a sacred collection of divinely-inspired writings that guide the life of Catholics universally as it did the apostles. Older is better — right? Yes it had problems, to be sure. But the Church later reaffirmed the Christian canon of Scripture as the current Catholic one that includes the deuterocanonicals, and St. Jerome submitted willingly to this authoritative decision. They do make mistakes sometimes. As for the other Protestant reformers and councils, the same reason may apply, though they often liked to cite a whole host of academic reasons other than that. For example; we might be able to fool some people for a while with our propaganda, especially those who aren’t willing to look things up for themselves, but as soon as somebody cracks open a real history book, all of our propaganda will be in vain. Didn’t the Catholic Church Add to the Bible? Another common academic argument against including the seven additional books of the Septuagint (Deuterocanon) is the citation of a couple early Christian writers who apparently did not regard them as authoritative Scripture. He’s usually very generous. The church was able to discern which of the books were indeed inspired by God, and which did not belong in the Bible, so how did they know which ones belonged and which ones didn’t? The short answer is simply this. The typical Protestant narrative is that the Catholic Church supposedly “added extra books” to the Old Testament during those “scary dark ages” when Catholicism ruled the Western world and “real Christians” (i.e. Each Jewish “Bible” depended on what kind of Jewish persuasion we are talking about. Why does the Catholic Bible have more books than the Protestant Bible? Did you enjoy this post? For starters, let’s all get on the same page. We use it at the beginning and end of…. Common Misunderstanding: That since the Catholic Old Testament contains seven more books than Protestant Bibles, the Catholic Church must have added later to justify doctrines that Jesus did not teach. It would be impossible for a human to record—or even to know as a finite being—everything about an infinite God. While all 66 books found in Protestant Bibles are also found in the Catholic Bible, the Catholic Bible also contains other books, and additions to books. I can’t change it any more than the Protestant minister down the street. Why Protestants Reject 7 Books of the Bible – the Short Answer by Steve Ray on August 19, 2016 Gary Michuta is an expert on the canon of Scripture, especially in regards to the Deutero-canonical books, what the Protestants call the Apocrypha. The desire to give to the Lord…, Discipleship is key to evangelization. So the Protestants compiled a version of the Bible that lacked the deuterocanonicals, while the Catholic Church explicitly affirmed their status as sacred scripture at the Council of Trent. [public domain / Wikipedia ] The Old Testament in Catholic Bibles contains seven more books … When Christ at a symbolic moment was establishing His great society, He chose for its cornerstone neither the brilliant Paul…, O Come, Redeemer of the earth, and manifest thy virgin-birth. Now, you’ll never hear a militant advocate for the shorter Old Testament canon tell you that. Judaism decided on its canon in the first century AD although, much like Christians, they had been using a Bible long before then. We are more than 40 young professionals from around the world, putting our gifts to the service of The Church. So, this whole issue doesn’t seem as bad as someone might make it out to be. Why do Roman Catholic Bibles have More Books in the Old Testament? Why Does the Catholic Bible Have More Books? Catholic and Protestant Bibles both include 27 books in the New Testament. The following list is the 7 books that the Catholics include that the Protestants do not. So in Alexandria, Egypt, a translation of the canon of Scripture was commissioned. Now to be fair, this belief is not held by all Protestants, just a certain number of them. The Catholics have more books in their Bible than we do. Catholics, on the other hand, have a different take on the matter. For Catholics and Protestants, the New Testament is the same, but Catholics have seven more books in the Old Testament: Tobit, Judith, 1 and 2 Maccabees, Wisdom, Ben Sira, and Baruch. These books inconveniently (for him) defend the Catholic Church’s long-standing beliefs on issues Luther did not agree with. We believe it is the divinely-inspired Word of God, but there is no list in Scripture itself telling us directly which books are or are not official canon. Every Christian, regardless if Catholic or Protestant, deserves access to ALL of the Scriptures. This Greek canon helped Judaism to expand rapidly in the ancient world, and brought in a number of Greek-speaking Gentile converts. All written contents on this blog are copyrighted by Shane Schaetzel. The Septuagint was a Greek version of the Hebrew Bible, which was translated for Jews when the Greeks had Hellenized much of the area. St. Jerome was asked to translate the Christian Bible into Latin, and – knowing Hebrew – he chose to translate from the Hebrew Bible, which by that time excluded the deuterocanonical books, so Jerome left them out of his translation. The fact is, the apostles and bishops of the early Church believed BOTH CANONS were authoritative — both the Hebrew/Aramaic Tanakh (Protocanon), and the Greek Septuagint (Deuterocanon). ', however, while Catholic Bibles and Protestant Bibles are known to have more?. 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Other, more contemporary sources for further edification history will back up what I ’ m saying also, Protestant! Reference to Greek influence on the same page tradition, and had no problem ministering Greek-speaking. Or King James Version the street later Councils at Hippo ( 393 AD ) ratified this list of books.
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