'Replies from Roman Catholics'

Clark Henry - 63

23rd February, 2012

(Continued from page 327)

The Catholic Encyclopedia lies: 'The deuterocanonicals ... long ago gained a secure footing in the Catholic Bible!


It is noticeable that your authority,
The Catholic Encyclopedia states

(at ref.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03267a.htm ):

The deuterocanonical (deuteros, 'second') are those whose Scriptural character was contested in some quarters,
but which long ago gained a secure footing in the Bible of the Catholic Church, though those of the Old Testament are classed by Protestants as the 'Apocrypha'. These consist of seven books: Tobias, Judith, Baruch, Ecclesiasticus, Wisdom, First and Second Machabees ; also certain additions to Esther and Daniel.

TCE:   The evidence shows 'long ago gained a secure footing' to be more than slightly economical with the truth.  After a more honest appraisal of the process of canonisation than you have managed, The Catholic Encyclopedia writes:

The scope of an article on the sacred Canon may now be seen to be properly limited regarding the process of:

  • what may be ascertained regarding the process of the collection of the sacred writings into bodies or groups which from their very inception were the objects of a greater or less degree of veneration ;
  • the circumstances and manner in which these collections were definitely canonized, or adjudged to have a uniquely Divine and authoritative quality ;
  • the vicissitudes which certain compositions underwent in the opinions of individuals and localities before their Scriptural character was universally established.

TCE:   That The Catholic Encyclopedia should consider that 'vicissitudes' ('a variation in circumstances or fortune at different times in life, or in the development of something') and 'the opinions of individuals and localities' should play a part in the determination of the canon strikes right at the heart of 'Papal infallibility' and 'Apostolic Succession' claims and leaves no logical person even slightly convinced that Papal Rome came to her version of the Scriptures by virtue of any kind of Divine Protection or Guidance.  This is, of course, entirely consistent with the view of Papal Rome's 'Magisterium' and 'Tradition' which can invent evidence as it suits their cause.

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ...

It is thus seen that canonicity is a correlative of inspiration, being the extrinsic dignity belonging to writings which have been
officially declared as of sacred origin and authority. It is antecedently very probable that according as a book was written early or late it entered into a sacred collection and attained a canonical standing. Hence the views of traditionalist and critic (not implying that the traditionalist may not also be critical) on the Canon parallel, and are largely influenced by, their respective hypotheses on the origin of its component members.

TCE:   They clearly admit that the process involved some official declaration of canonical standing and, since the Papal Roman Catholic Church did not even exist in Old Testament days or even post-New Testament  era, but was incorporated by Emperor Constantine, the declarations on canonicity we have suggested stand.  That 'respective hypotheses' could play a part in this 'official declaration' is equally unconvincing.

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ...

It has already '
been intimated' that there is a smaller, or incomplete, and larger, or complete, Old Testament . Both of these were handed down by the Jews ; the former by the Palestinian, the latter by the Alexandrian, Hellenist, Jews.

TCE:  The Catholic Encyclopedia does no more than claim that 'The canon among the Palestinian Jews (protocanonical books)' has merely 'been intimated' (i.e. implied as a possibility).  Why do you think you can overstate your claims so blatantly when your own authorities fail to support you?

Regarding the 'Traditional view of the canon of the Palestinian Jews' under 'Proto-Canon',
The Catholic Encyclopedia admits:

These same conservative students of the Canon--now scarcely represented outside the Church--maintain, for the reception of the documents composing these groups into the sacred literature of the Israelites, dates which are in general much earlier than those admitted by critics.  They
place the practical, if not formal, completion of the Palestinian Canon in the era of Esdras (Ezra) and Nehemias, about the middle of the fifth century B.C., while true to their adhesion to a Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch, they insist that the canonization of the five books followed soon after their composition.

TCE: Your authority can at least admit that 'Palestinian Canon' existed in a form that was indeed 'practical, if not formal, completion ... about the middle of the fifth century B.C.'.  Considering the clear warnings that authentic Scripture gave Israel, to ensure they kept a close watch on the Word entrusted to them (Deuteronomy 4:2: 'Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish from it, that ye may keep the commandments of YHWH your God which I command you'; cf.  Revelation 22:18-19), we should not be surprised that the Council of Jamnia met to ensure pseudocanonical (Greek: pseudologos - speaking falsely, lying) works did not poison the Old Testament that God entrusted to them.

How does
The Catholic Encyclopedia try to quibble with the claim that 'they insist that the canonization of the five books followed soon after their composition'?:

Since the traditionalists infer the Mosaic authorship of the Pentateuch from other sources,
they can rely for proof of an early collection of these books chiefly on Deuteronomy 31:9-13, 24-26, where there is question of a books of the law, delivered by Moses to the priests with the command to keep it in the ark and read it to the people on the feast of Tabernacles. But the effort to identify this book with the entire Pentateuch is not convincing to the opponents of Mosaic authorship.

TCE:  If the clear words in Deuteronomy 31:9-30 are 'not convincing to the opponents of Mosaic authorship' it is hard to know what would persuade them!:

And
Moses wrote this law, and delivered it unto the priests the sons of Levi, that bare the ark of the covenant of YHWH, and unto all the elders of Israel. And Moses commanded them, saying, At the end of every seven years, in the set time of the year of release, in the feast of tabernacles, when all Israel is come to appear before YHWH thy God in the place which he shall choose, thou shalt read this law before all Israel in their hearing. Assemble the people, the men and the women and the little ones, and thy sojourner that is within thy gates, that they may hear, and that they may learn, and fear YHWH your God, and observe to do all the words of this law; and that their children, who have not known, may hear, and learn to fear YHWH your God, as long as ye live in the land whither ye go over the Jordan to possess it. ... And it came to pass, when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book, until they were finished, that Moses commanded the Levites, that bare the ark of the covenant of YHWH, saying, Take this book of the law, and put it by the side of the ark of the covenant of YHWH your God, that it may be there for a witness against thee. For I know thy rebellion, and thy stiff neck: behold, while I am yet alive with you this day, ye have been rebellious against YHWH; and how much more after my death? Assemble unto me all the elders of your tribes, and your officers, that I may speak these words in their ears, and call heaven and earth to witness against them. For I know that after my death ye will utterly corrupt yourselves, and turn aside from the way which I have commanded you; and evil will befall you in the latter days; because ye will do that which is evil in the sight of YHWH, to provoke him to anger through the work of your hands. And Moses spake in the ears of all the assembly of Israel the words of this song, until they were finished.

This was not the only statement made by Moses in such a manner (cf. Exodus 17:14; 24:4; Numbers 33:2).  Hence, orthodox believers accept that the whole work, being complete in itself, is the production of the servant of God who had such a great part to play in so much of it.  When Moses gave the priests specific instructions on how each sacrificial offering was to be made in Leviticus (e.g. 'Say to the Israelites' Lev. 7:22-36; 37-38) we find verses that are in the form of an ancient Mesopotamian colophon, a form used in the second millennium BC with which Moses would have been familiar.
This form was not used centuries later, when opponents of Mosaic authorship have suggested these Old Testament documents were actually written.  These verses are therefore considered by many to be as clear an indication of Mosaic authorship and date as is the copyright page of a modern book that bears the date and place of publication.  We also have the evidence of the incidental statement of the Lord Jesus Christ after his resurrection:  'These are the words which I spake unto you while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written In The Law Of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the Psalms concerning me' (Luke 24:44).  It is only needful to say that the law of Moses here means the Pentateuch, and that this passage is only a single sample out of the concurrent testimony of the New Testament to the Mosaic authorship of this book.

The Catholic Encyclopedia claims that 'Josephus is the earliest writer who numbers the books of the Jewish Bible . In its present arrangement this contains 40; Josephus arrived at 22 artificially, in order to match the number of letters in the Hebrew alphabet, by means of collocations and combinations borrowed in part from the Septuagint'.  We have already shown that The Jewish Encyclopedia has a very different and logical explanation for the canon of Josephus - and that he was not alone in his methodology and numbering which was very similar to that of a considerable number of 'Church Fathers' and closely allied leaders!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ...   

The conservative exegetes find a confirmatory argument in a statement of
the apocryphal Fourth Book of Esdras (xiv, 18-47), under whose legendary envelope they see an historical truth, and a further one in a reference in the Baba Bathra tract of the Babylonian Talmud to hagiographic activity on the part of 'the men of the Great Synagogue', and Esdras and Nehemias.  But the Catholic Scripturists who admit an Esdrine Canon are far from allowing that Esdras and his colleagues intended to so close up the sacred library as to bar any possible future accessions . The Spirit of God might and did breathe into later writings, and the presence of the deuterocanonical books in the Church's Canon at once forestalls and answers those Protestant theologians of a preceding generation who claimed that Esdras was a Divine agent for an inviolable fixing and sealing of the Old Testament . To this extent at least, Catholic writers on the subject dissent from the drift of the Josephus testimony. And while there is what may be called a consensus of Catholic exegetes of the conservative type on an Esdrine or quasi-Esdrine formulation of the canon so far as the existing material permitted it, this agreement is not absolute; Kaulen and Danko, favouring a later completion, are the notable exceptions among the above-mentioned scholars.

TCE: Merely stating that 'Catholic writers on the subject dissent from the drift of the Josephus testimony', while failing to produce convincing evidence to prove the validity of an alternative view or an inviolable case against the historian Josephus, is no argument at all.  The Catholic Encyclopedia also admits that variable views on the formulation of the canon are held by Catholic exegetes - while 'agreement is not absolute'!  Again, if 'Papal infallibility' truly existed all of these views could not exist within Papal Rome! 

The Catholic Encyclopedia writes:

'The actual publication of the entire Mosaic code, according to
the dominant hypothesis, did not occur until the days of Esdras, and is narrated in chapters viii-x of the second book bearing that name. In this connection must be mentioned the argument from the Samaritan Pentateuch to establish that the Esdrine Canon took in nothing beyond the Hexateuch, i.e. the Pentateuch plus Josue'.

TCE:  Perhaps you cannot see the ridiculous contradiction in having an 'encyclopaedic authority' that is supposedly guided by 'Papal infallibility', yet allows 'hypothesis' and an appeal to 'the argument from the Samaritan Pentateuch' - i.e. from heretics outside of any keepers of the Jewish canon.  When we have clear Scriptural evidence that God always has His true followers who have not 'bent the knee to Baal' (1 Kings 19:18; Romans 11:4) and can discern through the leading of the Holy Spirit what is His Word and what is mere 'pseudologos', we do not follow the vain imaginations of popes and other deceivers.

The Catholic Encyclopedia continues in similar vein: 

There is no direct light upon the time or manner in which the second stratum of the Hebrew Canon was finished. The creation of the above-mentioned Samaritan Canon. 432 B.C.) may furnish a terminus a quo; perhaps a better one is the date of the expiration of prophecy about the close of the fifth century before Christ . For the other terminus the lowest possible date is that of the prologue to Ecclesiasticus. 132 B.C.), which speaks of 'the Law ', and the Prophets, and the others that have followed them'. But compare Ecclesiasticus itself, chapters 46 - 49, for an earlier one.

Critical opinion as to date ranged from c. 165 B.C. to the middle of the second century of our era (Wildeboer). The Catholic scholars Jahn, Movers, Nickes, Danko, Haneberg, Aicher, without sharing all the views of the advanced exegetes, regard the Hebrew Hagiographa as not definitely settled till after Christ . It is an incontestable fact that the sacredness of certain parts of the Palestinian Bible (Esther, Ecclesiastes, Canticle of Canticles ) was disputed by some rabbis as late as the second century of the Christian Era (Mishna, Yadaim, III, 5; Babylonian Talmud, Megilla, fol. 7). However differing as to dates, the critics are assured that the distinction between the Hagiographa and the Prophetic Canon was one essentially chronological . It was because the Prophets already formed a sealed collection that Ruth, Lamentations, and Daniel, though naturally belonging to it, could not gain entrance, but had to take their place with the last-formed division, the Kéthubim.

TCE: The Catholic Encyclopedia admits to 'no direct light' and makes no appeal to any special light from 'Papal infallibility' but, instead, admits to bearing heed to the 'disput[ations] by some rabbis as late as the second century of the Christian Era'!  While you dare quibble about the opinion of Josephus your source pays attention to the opinion of 'second century ... rabbis' instead of simply accepting the opinion of the Lord Jesus Christ and His promise of the Holy Spirit leading us 'into all truth' (John 14v26; 16v7-13) as 'incontestable fact'?!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

The protocanonical books and the New Testament

The absence of any citations from Esther, Ecclesiastes, and Canticles may be reasonably explained by their unsuitability for New Testament purposes, and is
further discounted by the non-citation of the two books of Esdras . Abdias, Nahum, and Sophonias, while not directly honoured, are included in the quotations from the other minor Prophets by virtue of the traditional unity of that collection. On the other hand, such frequent terms as 'the Scripture', the 'Scriptures', 'the holy Scriptures', applied in the New Testament to the other sacred writings, would lead us to believe that the latter already formed a definite fixed collection ; but, on the other, the reference in St. Luke to 'the Law and the Prophets and the Psalms', while demonstrating the fixity of the Torah and the Prophets as sacred groups, does not warrant us in ascribing the same fixity to the third division, the Palestinian-Jewish Hagiographa . If, as seems certain, the exact content of the broader catalogue of the Old Testament Scriptures (that comprising the deutero books) cannot be established from the New Testament, a fortiori there is no reason to expect that it should reflect the precise extension of the narrower and Judaistic Canon . We are sure, of course, that all the Hagiographa were eventually, before the death of the last Apostle, divinely committed to the Church as Holy Scripture, but we known [sic] this as a truth of faith, and by theological deduction, not from documentary evidence in the New Testament. The latter fact has a bearing against the Protestant claim that Jesus approved and transmitted en bloc an already defined Bible of the Palestinian Synagogue .

TCE:   We see the way in which The Catholic Encyclopedia ruefully admits the methodology for canonicity, accepting 'traditional unity' as evidence for 'Abdias, Nahum, and Sophonias' and conceding 'that all the Hagiographa were eventually, before the death of the last Apostle, divinely committed to the Church as Holy Scripture, but we known [sic] this as a truth of faith, and by theological deduction, not from documentary evidence in the New Testament'.  Clearly no need for 'Papal infallibility' but a weak admission that 'faith' and 'theological deduction', rather than 'documentary evidence in the New Testament' was the method of determination.  But no mention of the leading of the Holy Spirit 'into all truth' (John 16:7ff.)!

It would be interesting to know their source of '
the Protestant claim that Jesus approved and transmitted en bloc an already defined Bible of the Palestinian Synagogue'?  There is no Scripture where Jesus ever implies a deficiency of any kind in the canon of His day, although He had harsh words for the way the 'tradition' of scribes and Pharisees had usurped the Word (Matthew 15:2-6; Mark 7:3-13; Colossians 2:8; 2 Thessalonians 3:6; 1 Peter 1:18-9), and He clearly never quoted from Apocryphal works. He had also warned His disciples of the persecution and ejection from 'synagogues' that would result from their preaching of His Gospel (Matthew 10:17; 23:34; Mark 13:9; Luke 12:11; 21:12; John 16:2; Acts 9:2; 24:12; 26:11) so there is no reason to expect the disciples to rely on such institutions for their canon.  Why would an immediate 'defined Bible' be sought immediately on His Ascension when the Apostles were still sending inspired writings, which they labelled as Scripture, to followers and churches after Jesus had returned to heaven (Acts 1:8-11)? Another certainty is that God would put the care of His Word into the hands of equally Spirit-led believers  and not rely on 'Church Fathers', men such as Origen, Jerome, and Augustine, who clearly revealed traits at odds with the very Word they were meant to revere and preserve and who slipped into 'traditions' as bizarre and untrustworthy as those who suffered Jesus' criticism to their faces.  Again, we have enough evidence that Papal Rome followed and built on the false teachings initiated by such 'Church Fathers' and all truly orthodox believers reject them as men to be followed and trusted because they were so often at odds with genuine Scripture.

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

Though the Old Testament reveals no formal notion of inspiration, the later Jews at least must have possessed the idea (cf. 2 Timothy 3:16 ; 2 Peter 1:21 ).
There is an instance of a Talmudic doctor distinguishing between a composition 'given by the wisdom of the Holy Spirit' and one supposed to be the product of merely human wisdom. But as to our distinct concept of canonicity, it is a modern idea, and even the Talmud gives no evidence of it. To characterize a book which held no acknowledged place in the divine library, the rabbis spoke of it as 'defiling the hands', a curious technical expression due probably to the desire to prevent any profane touching of the sacred roll. But though the formal idea of canonicity was wanting among the Jews the fact existed . Regarding the sources of canonicity among the Hebrew ancients, we are left to surmise an analogy . There are both psychological and historical reasons against the supposition that the Old Testament canon grew spontaneously by a kind of instinctive public recognition of inspired books. True, it is quite reasonable to assume that the prophetic office in Israel carried its own credentials, which in a large measure extended to its written compositions. But there were many pseudo-prophets in the nation, and so some authority was necessary to draw the line between the true and the false prophetical writings. And an ultimate tribunal was also needed to set its seal upon the miscellaneous and in some cases mystifying literature embraced in the Hagiographa . Jewish tradition, as illustrated by the already cited Josephus, Baba Bathra, and pseudo-Esdras data, points to authority as the final arbiter of what was Scriptural and what not. The so-called Council of Jamnia. A.D. 90) has reasonably been taken as having terminated the disputes between rival rabbinic schools concerning the canonicity of Canticles . So while the intuitive sense and increasingly reverent consciousness of the faithful element of Israel could, and presumably did, give a general impulse and direction to authority, we must conclude that it was the word of official authority which actually fixed the limits of the Hebrew Canon, and here, broadly speaking, the advanced and conservative exegetes meet on common ground. However the case may have been for the Prophets, the preponderance of evidence favours a late period as that in which the Hagiographa were closed, a period when the general body of Scribes dominated Judaism, sitting 'in the chair of Moses', and alone having the authority and prestige for such action . The term general body of Scribes has been used advisedly; contemporary scholars gravely suspect, when they do not entirely reject, the 'Great Synagogue' of rabbinic tradition, and the matter lay outside the jurisdiction of the Sanhedrim [sic].

TCE:   We find your quoted authority happy to make use of 'a Talmudic doctor' and even 'Josephus' while reluctantly admitting that 'some authority was necessary to draw the line between the true and the false prophetical writings ... an ultimate tribunal was also needed to set its seal upon the miscellaneous and in some cases mystifying literature embraced in the Hagiographa ... authority [w]as the final arbiter of what was Scriptural and what not. The so-called Council of Jamnia. A.D. 90) has reasonably been taken as having terminated the disputes between rival rabbinic schools concerning the canonicity of Canticles ... the intuitive sense and increasingly reverent consciousness of the faithful element of Israel could, and presumably did, give a general impulse and direction to authority, we must conclude that it was the word of official authority which actually fixed the limits of the Hebrew Canon ... the preponderance of evidence favours a late period as that in which the Hagiographa were closed, a period when the general body of Scribes dominated Judaism, sitting 'in the chair of Moses', and alone having the authority and prestige for such action ...

While
The Catholic Encyclopedia tries to weaken this last section by adding this rider: 'general body of Scribes has been used advisedly; contemporary scholars gravely suspect, when they do not entirely reject, the 'Great Synagogue' of rabbinic tradition ... they have no genuine historical record to support their empty hypothesis and we are therefore equally entitled to reject their view.

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ...

As a touchstone by which uncanonical and canonical works were discriminated, an important influence was that of the Pentateuchal Law . This was always the Canon par excellence of the Israelites . To the Jews of the Middle Ages the Torah was the inner sanctuary, or Holy of Holies, while the Prophets were the Holy Place, and the Kéthubim only the outer court of the Biblical temple, and this medieval conception finds ample basis in the pre-eminence allowed to the Law by the rabbis of the Talmudic age. Indeed, from Esdras downwards the Law, as the oldest portion of the Canon, and the formal expression of God's commands, received the highest reverence.
The Cabbalists of the second century after Christ, and later schools, regarded the other section of the Old Testament as merely the expansion and interpretation of the Pentateuch . We may be sure, then, that the chief test of canonicity, at least for the Hagiographa, was conformity with the Canon par excellence, the Pentateuch . It is evident, in addition, that no book was admitted which had not been composed in Hebrew, and did not possess the antiquity and prestige of a classic age, or name at least. These criteria are negative and exclusive rather than directive. The impulse of religious feeling or liturgical usage must have been the prevailing positive factors in the decision. But the negative tests were in part arbitrary, and an intuitive sense cannot give the assurance of Divine certification. Only later was the infallible voice to come, and then it was to declare that the Canon of the Synagogue, though unadulterated indeed, was incomplete.

TCE:   So we now find The Catholic Encyclopedia appealing to the opinions of 'The Cabbalists of the second century after Christ, and later schools ...' as if these were any kind of authority worth following!?  Cabbalah (variant spellings begin with a K or Q) is an ancient form of Jewish mysticism, which was formalized at the end of the 12th Century and supposedly turned Biblical truth and history into occult myths, blending Gnosticism, theosophy and other occult 'mysteries' among adherents who usually meet behind closed doors in 'secret societies'.  Since it promotes a doctrine of esoteric knowledge concerning God and the universe, supposedly revealed to 'Ancient Sages' and preserved only by a privileged few as part of the Jewish Oral Law, it is claimed to be the traditional mystical understanding of the Torah.  Most forms of Cabbalah teach that every letter, word, number, and accent of scripture contains a hidden sense although some more contemporary teachers claim the 'Jewish Studies' approach is a highly rational system of understanding the world, rather than a mystical one.  But even those who claim that their 'New Kabbalah' is a philosophical Jewish theology grounded in a union between traditional Jewish mysticism and modern rational thought, which can also be linked to other religious and philosophical traditions including Hinduism, Buddhism, Platonism, and Gnosticism, cannot deny the clear links to ancient occultism.  So to conclude 'We may be sure, then, that the chief test of canonicity ...' and then ramble on ineffectively before submitting another laughable sentence - 'Only later was the infallible voice to come, and then it was to declare that the Canon of the Synagogue, though unadulterated indeed, was incomplete' - is to really challenge the most limited intellect!  Does The Catholic Encyclopedia really hope we will accept that Papal Rome ever supplied any kind of 'infallible voice' when the evidence of history proves 'infallibility' to be light years away from Papal Rome?  Again, Papal Rome forgets that it was the 'tradition' of the Pharisees - their additions to Scripture - that the Lord Jesus Christ rejected (Matthew 15:3; Mark 7:8-13; cf. Colossians 2:8) and He certainly never said they had an inaccurate or unfilled canon!  It is the same evidence that condemns the popes and their cult!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

The canon among the Alexandrian Jews (deuterocanonical books)

The most striking difference between the Catholic and Protestant Bibles is the presence in the former of a number of writings which are wanting in the latter and also in the Hebrew Bible, which became the Old Testament of Protestantism. These number seven books: Tobias (Tobit), Judith, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, I and II Machabees, and three documents added to protocanonical books, viz., the supplement to Esther, from x, 4, to the end, the Canticle of the Three Youths (Song of the Three Children) in Daniel, iii, and the stories of Susanna and the Elders and Bel and the Dragon, forming the closing chapters of the Catholic version of that book. Of these works, Tobias and Judith were written originally in Aramaic, perhaps in Hebrew ; Baruch and I Machabees in Hebrew, while Wisdom and II Machabees were certainly composed in Greek . The probabilities favour Hebrew as the original language of the addition to Esther, and Greek for the enlargements of Daniel .

The ancient Greek Old Testament known as the Septuagint was the vehicle which conveyed these additional Scriptures into the Catholic Church. The Septuagint version was the Bible of the Greek-speaking, or Hellenist, Jews, whose intellectual and literary centre was Alexandria (see SEPTUAGINT). The oldest extant copies date from the fourth and fifth centuries of our era, and were therefore made by Christian hands; nevertheless scholars generally admit that these faithfully represent the Old Testament as it was current among the Hellenist or Alexandrian Jews in the age immediately preceding Christ . These venerable manuscripts of the Septuagint vary somewhat in their content outside the Palestinian Canon, showing that in Alexandrian-Jewish circles the number of admissible extra books was not sharply determined either by tradition or by authority. However, aside from the absence of Machabees from the Codex Vaticanus (the very oldest copy of the Greek Old Testament), all the entire manuscripts contain all the deutero writings; where the manuscript Septuagints differ from one another, with the exception noted, it is in a certain excess above the deuterocanonical books. It is a significant fact that in all these Alexandrian Bibles the traditional Hebrew order is broken up by the interspersion of the additional literature among the other books, outside the law, thus asserting for the extra writings a substantial equality of rank and privilege.

The Catholic Encyclopedia ignores the fact that the Council of Trent did not insert the whole Apocrypha into their Bible!


TCE:  The Catholic Encyclopedia claims that 'The oldest extant copies date from the fourth and fifth centuries of our era, and were therefore made by Christian hands.'  So they posit this as an absolute certainty.  But Papal Rome accepts that the preserving force behind the Septuagint (LXX) of Jesus' day was the Jews (initially of Alexandria) and, since 'The Council of Jamnia' has been shown to have rejected the Apocrypha just as the other renowned historians of that era also rejected these works, the evidence we do have is that the Apocrypha were inserted into the Septuagint (LXX) by post-Constantine 'Christians'.  Since we have no surviving manuscripts of the Septuagint (LXX) from Jesus' day we can only accept the available evidence and that, by the admission of The Catholic Encyclopedia, shows only that the Apocrypha appeared as a result of the work of these 'Christian hands'.  Coupled with the evidence that  additions to the early Bible occurred on the whim of the 'Church Fathers' (or their minions) and the subsequent sloppy and incompetent copying that Jerome was witness to (see earlier), even after he had applied himself to his Vulgate, shows we have no good reason to believe that Papal Rome was ever to be trusted with designating and guarding the canon!

The claim that '
nevertheless scholars generally admit that these faithfully represent the Old Testament as it was current among the Hellenist or Alexandrian Jews in the age immediately preceding Christ' is merely hopeful - for the evidence reveals it to be unprovable.  This is admitted by the next statement: 'These venerable manuscripts of the Septuagint vary somewhat in their content outside the Palestinian Canon, showing that in Alexandrian-Jewish circles the number of admissible extra books was not sharply determined either by tradition or by authority.Again, evidence we have examined on our pages clearly reveals that the very Septuagint (LXX) originating from the 'Alexandrian-Jewish circles' had no good reason to be trusted.  Since the evidence shows that Papal Rome's copying system was very poor, yet added material as the whim of the 'authority' dictated, it must be obvious that the keepers of 'the Palestinian Canon' guarded their 'venerable manuscripts' with far greater vigilance!

The Catholic Encyclopedia admits '... the absence of Machabees from the Codex Vaticanus (the very oldest copy of the Greek Old Testament)' yet can accept that it can be re-inserted as necessary - or, at least, the parts required to support Papal Rome's false doctrines.  And, again, while noting that '... all the entire manuscripts contain all the deutero writings [but] ... where the manuscript Septuagints differ from one another, with the exception noted, it is in a certain excess above the deuterocanonical books.'  The obvious question must be asked: why was the 'certain excess above the deuterocanonical books' not also accepted to be in 'the canon' approved by Papal Rome! 

That The Catholic Encyclopedia can claim: 'It is a significant fact that in all these Alexandrian Bibles the traditional Hebrew order is broken up by the interspersion of the additional literature among the other books, outside the law, thus asserting for the extra writings a substantial equality of rank and privilege' while ignoring the fact that even the 'Council of Trent' failed to insert all of them into their Bible reveals the true blindness of Papal Rome!

The Catholic Encyclopedia fails to identify the Satanic influence of the 'Hellenistic largeness of spirit'!


The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ...

It is pertinent to ask the motives which impelled the Hellenist Jews to thus, virtually at least, canonize this considerable section of literature, some of it very recent, and depart so radically from the Palestinian tradition .
Some would have it that not the Alexandrian, but the Palestinian, Jews departed from the Biblical tradition . The Catholic writers Nickes, Movers, Danko, and more recently Kaulen and Mullen, have advocated the view that originally the Palestinian Canon must have included all the deuterocanonicals, and so stood down to the time of the Apostles ( Kaulen, c. 100 B.C.), when, moved by the fact that the Septuagint had become the Old Testament of the Church, it was put under ban by the Jerusalem Scribes, who were actuated moreover (thus especially Kaulen) by hostility to the Hellenistic largeness of spirit and Greek composition of our deuterocanonical books. These exegetes place much reliance on St. Justin Martyr's statement that the Jews had mutilated Holy Writ, a statement that rests on no positive evidence. They adduce the fact that certain deutero books were quoted with veneration, and even in a few cases as Scriptures, by Palestinian or Babylonian doctors ; but the private utterances of a few rabbis cannot outweigh the consistent Hebrew tradition of the canon, attested by Josephus - although he himself was inclined to Hellenism--and even by the Alexandrian-Jewish author of IV Esdras . We are therefore forced to admit that the leaders of Alexandrian Judaism showed a notable independence of Jerusalem tradition and authority in permitting the sacred boundaries of the Canon, which certainly had been fixed for the Prophets, to be broken by the insertion of an enlarged Daniel and the Epistle of Baruch . On the assumption that the limits of the Palestinian Hagiographa remained undefined until a relatively late date, there was less bold innovation in the addition of the other books, but the wiping out of the lines of the triple division reveals that the Hellenists were ready to extend the Hebrew Canon, if not establish a new official one of their own.

On their human side these innovations are to be accounted for by the free spirit of the Hellenist Jews . Under the influence of Greek thought they had conceived a broader view of Divine inspiration than that of their Palestinian brethren, and refused to restrict the literary manifestations of the Holy Ghost to a certain terminus of time and the Hebrew form of language . The Book of Wisdom, emphatically Hellenist in character, presents to us Divine wisdom as flowing on from generation to generation and making holy souls and prophets ( 7:27, in the Greek ). Philo, a typical Alexandrian-Jewish thinker, has even an exaggerated notion of the diffusion of inspiration (Quis rerum divinarum ..., 52; ed. Lips., iii, 57; De migratione ..., 11,299; ed. Lips. ii, 334). But even Philo, while indicating acquaintance with the deutero literature, nowhere cites it in his voluminous writings. True, he does not employ several books of the Hebrew Canon ; but there is a natural presumption that if he had regarded the additional works as being quite on the same plane as the others, he would not have failed to quote so stimulating and congenial a production as the Book of Wisdom . Moreover, as has been pointed out by several authorities, the independent spirit of the Hellenists could not have gone so far as to setup a different official Canon from that of Jerusalem, without having left historical traces of such a rupture. So, from the available data we may justly infer that, while the deuterocanonicals were admitted as sacred by the Alexandrian Jews, they possessed a lower degree of sanctity and authority than the longer accepted books, i.e., the Palestinian Hagiographa and the Prophets, themselves inferior to the Law.

TCE:  These opinions reveal the real nature of the problem that Papal Rome cannot admit and they can only make a hopeful claim: 'Some would have it that not the Alexandrian, but the Palestinian, Jews departed from the Biblical tradition.'  The 'Some [who] would have it' are, clearly, mainly Papal Roman Catholics!  The 'Hellenistic' spirit that influenced the Jews of the Diaspora spread wherever they took their version of Scripture with whatever combination of un-Scriptural 'deuterocanonical' works attached.  The 'Letters to the Churches' (Revelation.  2-3) show us the problem existing in Laodicea, a church whose name carries the inert meaning of 'people's opinions', 'people's rights to their opinions' as well as 'people's judgments'.  The churches of Laodicea and Colossae exemplify the problems that occur when the Word of God is distorted into error by people in the church trying to understand the nature of God in Christ by using prevailing Hellenistic philosophies of the Greek and Phrygian world.  We see this revealed repeatedly when the theologically and spiritually Judaic faith of Scripture is re-interpreted as a Hellenistic religion which is also heavily corrupted by the incorporation of Eastern religions, as demonstrated repeatedly by 'Church Fathers' - as already particularly illustrated in the works of Origen, Jerome, and Augustine.  Thus the Judaic New Testament faith was redefined as a Hellenistic one and Tertullian's greatest fear of Babylon replacing Jerusalem was the outcome as Roman Catholic priests mimicked the Babylonian priests and became celibate with what the New Testament clearly calls 'doctrines of demons' (1 Timothy. 4:1-3).  All the references to Babylon in the Book of Revelation are evidently symbolic (ref. Revelation. 14:8; Revelation. 16:19; Revelation. 17:5; Revelation. 18:2, 10, 21).  Babylon (Revelation 17:5) is designated as a secret or 'mystery' (Greek: μυστηριον - mustérion), indicating that the name is to be understood figuratively and, while a few interpreters have believed that Jerusalem was the city that was designated as Babylon, most scholars hold that Rome is inferred.  That interpretation goes back at least to the time of Tertullian (Adv. Marc., iii. 13) and was also adopted by Jerome, Irenaeus, and Augustine and then, very commonly, accepted by the church. There are some striking facts which point to Rome as the city that is designated as Babylon (which we won't go into here).  All of this is essentially admitted by this section of The Catholic Encyclopedia which describes this error strewn method of handling Scripture as being due to the 'Hellenistic largeness of spirit'!

But
The Catholic Encyclopedia also admits:

'
These exegetes place much reliance on St. Justin Martyr's statement that the Jews had mutilated Holy Writ, a statement that rests on no positive evidence. They adduce the fact that certain deutero books were quoted with veneration, and even in a few cases as Scriptures, by Palestinian or Babylonian doctors ; but the private utterances of a few rabbis cannot outweigh the consistent Hebrew tradition of the canon, attested by Josephus - although he himself was inclined to Hellenism--and even by the Alexandrian-Jewish author of IV Esdras.'

TCE:   In this section The Catholic Encyclopedia admits there is no evidence that the Jews failed to carefully preserve 'Holy Writ' (Papal Rome compares extremely poorly!) and makes repeated admissions of the connection between the false Hellenistic ideas that caused the 'deuterocanonical' material to be smuggled into the Word of God in some manuscript collections ('... by Palestinian or Babylonian doctors'), while also giving ample reasons for men such as Josephus and Philo definitely not accepting such works:

'
the Hellenists were ready to extend the Hebrew Canon, if not establish a new official one of their own'

'
these innovations are to be accounted for by the free spirit of the Hellenist Jews. Under the influence of Greek thought they had conceived a broader view of Divine inspiration than that of their Palestinian brethren, and refused to restrict the literary manifestations of the Holy Ghost to a certain terminus of time and the Hebrew form of language . The Book of Wisdom, emphatically Hellenist in character ... Philo, a typical Alexandrian-Jewish thinker, has even an exaggerated notion of the diffusion of inspiration ... even Philo, while indicating acquaintance with the deutero literature, nowhere cites it in his voluminous writings. True, he does not employ several books of the Hebrew Canon ; but there is a natural presumption that if he had regarded the additional works as being quite on the same plane as the others, he would not have failed to quote so stimulating and congenial a production as the Book of Wisdom. ... the independent spirit of the Hellenists could not have gone so far as to setup a different official Canon from that of Jerusalem, without having left historical traces of such a rupture. ... from the available data we may justly infer that, while the deuterocanonicals were admitted as sacred by the Alexandrian Jews, they possessed a lower degree of sanctity and authority than the longer accepted books ...'

TCE:   Here we find The Catholic Encyclopedia admitting all the errors in thinking that are exemplified by historical Papal Rome and pervade to this day - and summarised by the occultic '... free spirit [that is not the Holy Spirit but is] emphatically Hellenist.'

The Catholic Encyclopedia admits that the 'infallible popes' took until 1546 to come to this 'pronouncement on the Canon' - thus claims that early 'Councils' decreed the Canon are proven to be false!


The Catholic Encyclopedia then lists 'The canon of the Old Testament in the Catholic Church', claiming that:

'
The most explicit definition of the Catholic Canon is that given by the Council of Trent, Session IV, 1546.'

TCE: This is a clear admission that the earlier councils and popes did not explicitly define the canon, as already proven!  And this was the Papal Roman Catholic canon - not the true Word of God!

The Catholic Encyclopedia also states here:

The order of books copies that of the Council of Florence, 1442, and in its general plan is that of the Septuagint.
The divergence of titles from those found in the Protestant versions is due to the fact that the official Latin Vulgate retained the forms of the Septuagint.

TCE:  Note the use of the word 'retained' without mentioning that translator Jerome clearly instructed that they were not part of the recognised canon and, not too surprisingly, there is no admission of the convoluted history of this 'retention'!

The Catholic Encyclopedia continues [under the heading 'The Old Testament canon (including the deuteros) in the New Testament']:

The Tridentine decrees from which the above list is extracted was
the first infallible and effectually promulgated pronouncement on the Canon, addressed to the Church Universal .

TCE:  Here we have the clear admission that the 'infallible' popes took until 1546 to come to this 'pronouncement on the Canon' - thus claims that early 'Councils' decreed the Canon are proven to be false!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

Being dogmatic in its purport,
it implies that the Apostles bequeathed the same Canon to the Church, as a part of the depositum fidei. But this was not done by way of any formal decision; we should search the pages of the New Testament in vain for any trace of such action. The larger Canon of the Old Testament passed through the Apostles' hands to the church tacitly, by way of their usage and whole attitude toward its components; an attitude which, for most of the sacred writings of the Old Testament, reveals itself in the New, and for the rest, must have exhibited itself in oral utterances, or at least in tacit approval of the special reverence of the faithful . Reasoning backward from the status in which we find the deutero books in the earliest ages of post-Apostolic Christianity, we rightly affirm that such a status points of Apostolic sanction, which in turn must have rested on revelation either by Christ or the Holy Spirit . For the deuterocanonicals at least, we needs must have recourse to this legitimate prescriptive argument, owing to the complexity and inadequacy of the New Testament data.

TCE:   We have the usual colossal use of supposition exemplified by repeated claims of 'must have', 'implies' and 'recourse to this legitimate prescriptive argument, owing to the complexity and inadequacy of the New Testament data'.  What part of the 'New Testament data' can possibly be called 'complex[ity] and inadequa[te]'?  According to The Catholic Encyclopedia the God of the Bible has left an 'inadequate' record that is too 'complex' for poor man to understand?!  We should not be surprised that Papal Rome should accuse the Christian God of this fault as He was apparently unable to understand science either, resulting in the persecution of such as Galileo.  The Catholic Encyclopedia cannot help but resort to claims that, to support Papal Rome's insertion of  'the deuterocanonicals' into Scripture, 'we needs must have recourse to this legitimate prescriptive argument'.  Rather than follow the clear evidence that the 'Church Fathers' and the popes were not led infallibly into determination of the canon of Scripture and that Papal Rome has repeatedly and forcibly destroyed all records of those they determined to be heretical, resulting in a sparsity of records of true believers who held to a canon that excluded the 'deuterocanonicals', we find The Catholic Encyclopedia resorting to flawed analysis of the 'data'.

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

All the books of the Hebrew Old Testament are cited in the New except those which have been aptly called the Antilegomena of the Old Testament, viz., Esther, Ecclesiastes, and Canticles ; moreover Esdras and Nehemias are not employed.
The admitted absence of any explicit citation of the deutero writings does not therefore prove that they were regarded as inferior to the above-mentioned works in the eyes of New Testament personages and authors. The deutero literature was in general unsuited to their purposes, and some consideration should be given to the fact that even at its Alexandrian home it was not quoted by Jewish writers, as we saw in the case of Philo . The negative argument drawn from the non-citation of the deuterocanonicals in the New Testament is especially minimized by the indirect use made of them by the same Testament . This takes the form of allusions and reminiscences, and shows unquestionably that the Apostles and Evangelists were acquainted with the Alexandrian increment, regarded its books as at least respectable sources, and wrote more or less under its influence. A comparison of Hebrews, xi and II Machabees, vi and vii reveals unmistakable references in the former to the heroism of the martyrs glorified in the latter. There are close affinities of thought, and in some cases also of language, between 1 Peter 1:6-7, and Wisdom 3:5-6 ; Hebrews 1:3, and Wisdom 7:26-27 ; 1 Corinthians 10:9-10, and Judith 8:24-25 ; 1 Corinthians 6:13, and Ecclesiasticus 36:20 .

TCE: The Catholic Encyclopedia has to admit the 'absence of any explicit citation of the deutero writings', but it is merely clutching at straws when it claims this 'does not therefore prove that they were regarded as inferior to the above-mentioned works in the eyes of New Testament personages and authors.'  From an argument from silence it claims that 'The deutero literature was in general unsuited to their purposes' and then hopefully suggests that 'some consideration should be given to the fact that even at its Alexandrian home it was not quoted by Jewish writers, as we saw in the case of Philo.'  Rather than admit that Jewish writers such as Philo did not quote from it because they, at the very least, shared the opinion of men such as Jerome but might have actually possessed the spiritual awareness to recognise the difference between the genuine Word of God and works that were 'pseudologos', would be too much to expect from such an 'Encyclopedia'.  Thus it has to hope that 'The negative argument drawn from the non-citation of the deuterocanonicals in the New Testament is especially minimized by the indirect use made of them by the same Testament'.  Examination of the evidence reveals that the 'allusions and reminiscences' it imagines, far from revealing 'unquestionably that the Apostles and Evangelists were acquainted with the Alexandrian increment, regarded its books as at least respectable sources, and wrote more or less under its influence', but reveals little more than a passing knowledge of their existence - as we have shown.

The Catholic Encyclopedia claims that 'A comparison of Hebrews, xi and II Machabees, vi and vii reveals unmistakable references in the former to the heroism of the martyrs glorified in the latter', but the reality is rather different and, while it reveals a common shared description of the sufferings of the Hebrews known to Jewish historians, apostles, and pseudologos writers alike, it can hardly be a sign of strict, godly, inspiration judged alone. 

Likewise, the claims that 'There are close affinities of thought, and in some cases also of language, between 1 Peter 1:6-7, and Wisdom 3:5-6 ; Hebrews 1:3, and Wisdom 7:26-27 ; 1 Corinthians 10:9-10, and Judith 8:24-25 ; 1 Corinthians 6:13, and Ecclesiasticus 36:20' are found to be nothing more than coincidental words, phrases and subjects that would be used by a variety of writers, inspired or not, as above.

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

Yet the force of the direct and indirect employment of Old Testament writings by the New is slightly impaired by the disconcerting truth that
at least one of the New Testament authors, St. Jude, quotes explicitly from the 'Book of Henoch', long universally recognized as apocryphal, see verse 14, while in verse 9 he borrows from another apocryphal narrative, the 'Assumption of Moses'.

TCE:   This claim was refuted earlier!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

The
New Testament quotations from the Old are in general characterized by a freedom and elasticity regarding manner and source which further tend to diminish their weight as proofs of canonicity. But so far as concerns the great majority of the Palestinian Hagiographa--a fortiori, the Pentateuch and Prophets - whatever want of conclusiveness there may be in the New Testament, evidence of their canonical standing is abundantly supplemented from Jewish sources alone, in the series of witnesses beginning with the Mishnah and running back through Josephus and Philo to the translation of the above books for the Hellenist Greeks . But for the deuterocanonical literature, only the last testimony speaks as a Jewish confirmation . However, there are signs that the Greek version was not deemed by its readers as a closed Bible of definite sacredness in all its parts, but that its somewhat variable contents shaded off in the eyes of the Hellenists from the eminently sacred Law down to works of questionable divinity, such as III Machabees .

TCE:   If the 'New Testament quotations from the Old' were not 'in general characterized by a freedom and elasticity regarding manner and source', and were often from the Septuagint (which cannot be proven to have contained the Apocrypha!), they would not admit that they 'diminish their weight as proofs of canonicity'.  But they do admit that 'so far as concerns the great majority of the Palestinian Hagiographa - a fortiori, the Pentateuch and Prophets - whatever want of conclusiveness there may be in the New Testament, evidence of their canonical standing is abundantly supplemented from Jewish sources alone'.  So, while we could never agree with The Catholic Encyclopedia that there is any 'want of conclusiveness [of their canonical standing] in the New Testament', it is clear that it agrees that there is massive evidence from 'Jewish sources alone'. While The Catholic Encyclopedia admits that there are 'signs that the Greek version was not deemed by its readers as a closed Bible of definite sacredness in all its parts, but ... its somewhat variable contents shaded off in the eyes of the Hellenists from the eminently sacred Law down to works of questionable divinity, such as III Machabees' it makes no attempt to explain why III Machabees should be considered 'questionable' when Papal Rome can accept the other Machabees without giving any reason for rejecting the works so often found with the Apocryphal books they did accept.  While 1 and 2 Maccabees are included in the Apocrypha accepted by Papal Rome, 3 and 4 Maccabees are ranked among the pseudepigrapha despite all four books varying greatly in historical reliability, content and style!

As we have already pointed out clearly, as far as any 'edification' is concerned, there is a wide variety among the Apocryphal books and 1-4 Maccabees give details concerning Jewish leaders who led a revolt against Greek tyranny.  According to Josephus, the chronology is calculated from the year that Seleucus Nicator controlled Syria, a period beginning with the Battle of Gaza in the summer of 312 BC, ref. Jos. Antiq. XIII. vi. 7), but it is a chronology complicated by different calendars employed by the Seleucids and the Jews. 
While 1 and 2 Maccabees were declared to be canonical by the Council of Trent in 1546, despite leading Papal Roman Catholic theologians denying their right to this status, early 'Church Fathers' made frequent use of both books, despite Origen and Jerome excluding them from their lists of canonical writings.  Only Augustine gave 2 Maccabees canonical ranking and he equivocated over his decision.  3 Maccabees was regarded as canonical only by the Eastern churches (Greek, Syriac, and Armenian), which also received 1 and 2 Maccabees, although it does appear in the Codex A of the Septuagint (LXX) and the Syriac Peshitta.  In spite of the influence of 4 Maccabees among martyrologies and its presence in key manuscripts of the Septuagint (LXX) (including Codex A), it was rarely considered canonical despite a few 'Church Fathers' ascribing some authority to it owing to its wide circulation and gripping message [as if this was any guide to canonicity!]

The details given in the books may have some value historically (some historians assert that 1 Maccabees was written as a sequel to Ezra and Nehemiah) and some find the courage of the Maccabees inspiring and edifying in that they draw courage from the heroes of the Old Testament (2:26; 4:30; 7:1-20) and their faith is portrayed in Scriptural terms and phrases sprinkled throughout the text (e.g. 3:45; 9:21-22), but 'The Book of Tobit', for example, is another matter altogether. 
Tobit and Judith contain some serious historical inaccuracies and, while the Bible teaches that Jesus Christ atoned for our sins and we can only be saved by faith in Him, 'The Book of Sirach' and Tobit both state that men can be saved from their sins by giving alms - an un-Biblical teaching that is certainly at home in the grasping nature of Papal Rome!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

This factor should be considered in weighing a certain argument.
A large number of Catholic authorities see a canonization of the deuteros in a supposed wholesale adoption and approval, by the Apostles, of the Greek, and therefore larger, Old Testament . The argument is not without a certain force; the New Testament undoubtedly shows a preference for the Septuagint ; out of the 350 texts from the Old Testament, 300 favour the language of the Greek version rather than that of the Hebrew . But there are considerations which bid us hesitate to admit an Apostolic adoption of the Septuagint en bloc.  As remarked above, there are cogent reasons for believing that it was not a fixed quantity at the time. The existing oldest representative manuscripts are not entirely identical in the books they contain. Moreover, it should be remembered that at the beginning of our era, and for some time later, complete sets of any such voluminous collection as the Septuagint in manuscript would be extremely rare; the version must have been current in separate books or groups of books, a condition favourable to a certain variability of compass. So neither a fluctuating Septuagint nor an inexplicit New Testament conveys to us the exact extension of the pre-Christian Bible transmitted by the Apostles to the Primitive Church . It is more tenable to conclude to a selective process under the guidance of the Holy Ghost, and a process completed so late in Apostolic times that the New Testament fails to reflect its mature result regarding either the number or note of sanctity of the extra-Palestinian books admitted. To historically learn the Apostolic Canon of the Old Testament we must interrogate less sacred but later documents, expressing more explicitly the belief of the first ages of Christianity .

TCE:   Here The Catholic Encyclopedia backs down from claiming 'canonization of the deuteros in a supposed wholesale adoption and approval, by the Apostles, of the Greek, and therefore larger, Old Testament and admits that 'there are cogent reasons for believing that it [the canon] was not a fixed quantity at the time.  But, as always, The Catholic Encyclopedia has to rely on supposition by claiming that 'the version must have been current in separate books or groups of books, a condition favourable to a certain variability of compass while having to admit that 'neither a fluctuating Septuagint nor an inexplicit New Testament conveys to us the exact extension of the pre-Christian Bible transmitted by the Apostles to the Primitive Church.Again, while claiming that 'It is more tenable to conclude to a selective process under the guidance of the Holy Ghost,' it still fails to address the obvious flaw in such an argument in that Jesus' words were that the Holy Spirit would lead believers into 'all truth' (John 16:7ff.) - NOT 'a selective process' that would take centuries!  To appeal to 'a process completed so late in Apostolic times that the New Testament fails to reflect its mature result regarding either the number or note of sanctity of the extra-Palestinian books admitted' is merely wishful thinking designed to lever the usual appeal to 'other sources': 'To historically learn the Apostolic Canon of the Old Testament we must interrogate less sacred but later documents, expressing more explicitly the belief of the first ages of Christianity.'

We have already seen that the writings of the 'Church Fathers' and 'less sacred but later documents' will never be capable of 'expressing more explicitly the belief of the first ages of Christianity.But, nonetheless, The Catholic Encyclopedia now appeals to these documents that are not just 'less sacred', but proven, uninspired, 'pseudologos':

The canon of the Old Testament in the Church of the first three centuries

The
sub-Apostolic writings of Clement, Polycarp, the author of the Epistle of Barnabas, of the pseudo-Clementine homilies, and the 'Shepherd' of Hermas, contain implicit quotations from or allusions to all the deuterocanonicals except Baruch (which anciently was often united with Jeremias) and I Machabees and the additions to David . No unfavourable argument can be drawn from the loose, implicit character of these citations, since these Apostolic Fathers quote the protocanonical Scriptures in precisely the same manner.

TCE:  As we have already shown, that a few of the 'Church Fathers' included 'implicit quotations from or allusions to all the deuterocanonicals except Baruch' means no more than the fact that at least some of them were deceived, or more deceived, than the others.  Claiming that 'No unfavourable argument can be drawn from the loose, implicit character of these citations, since these Apostolic Fathers quote the protocanonical Scriptures in precisely the same manner' could simply mean that these men shared the same inaccurate and untrustworthy sources - and nothing more!  That The Catholic Encyclopedia considers this to be 'No unfavourable argument' simply reveals the level of blindness that they operate under!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

Coming down to the next age, that of the apologists, we find Baruch cited by Athenagoras as a prophet.
St. Justin Martyr is the first to note that the Church has a set of Old Testament Scriptures different from the Jews', and also the earliest to intimate the principle proclaimed by later writers, namely, the self-sufficiency of the Church in establishing the Canon ; its independence of the Synagogue in this respect. The full realization of this truth came slowly, at least in the Orient, where there are indications that in certain quarters the spell of Palestinian-Jewish tradition was not fully cast off for some time.  St. Melito, Bishop of Sardis (c. 170), first drew up a list of the canonical books of the Old Testament. While maintaining the familiar arrangement of the Septuagint, he says that he verified his catalogue by inquiry among Jews ; Jewry by that time had everywhere discarded the Alexandrian books, and Melito's Canon consists exclusively of the protocanonicals minus Esther . It should be noticed, however, that the document to which this catalogue was prefixed is capable of being understood as having an anti-Jewish polemical purpose, in which case Melito's restricted canon is explicable on another ground. St. Irenaeus, always a witness of the first rank, on account of his broad acquaintance with ecclesiastical tradition, vouches that Baruch was deemed on the same footing as Jeremias, and that the narratives of Susanna and Bel and the Dragon were ascribed to Daniel . The Alexandrian tradition is represented by the weighty authority of Origen. Influenced, doubtless, by the Alexandrian-Jewish usage of acknowledging in practice the extra writings as sacred while theoretically holding to the narrower Canon of Palestine, his catalogue of the Old Testament Scriptures contains only the protocanonical books, though it follows the order of the Septuagint. Nevertheless Origen employs all the deuterocanonicals as Divine Scriptures, and in his letter of Julius Africanus defends the sacredness of Tobias, Judith, and the fragments of Daniel, at the same time implicitly asserting the autonomy of the Church in fixing the Canon (see references in Cornely). In his Hexaplar edition of the Old Testament all the deuteros find a place. The sixth-century Biblical manuscript known as the 'Codex Claromontanus' contains a catalogue to which both Harnack and Zahn assign an Alexandrian origin, about contemporary with Origen. At any rate it dates from the period under examination and comprises all the deuterocanonical books, with IV Machabees besides. St. Hippolytus (d. 236) may fairly be considered as representing the primitive Roman tradition . He comments on the Susanna chapter, often quotes Wisdom as the work of Solomon, and employs as Sacred Scripture Baruch and the Machabees . For the West African Church the larger canon has two strong witnesses in Tertullian and St. Cyprian . All the deuteros except Tobias, Judith, and the addition to Esther, are biblically used in the works of these Fathers . (With regard to the employment of apocryphal writings in this age see under APOCRYPHA .)

Divergences within the canon of the New Testament of Papal Rome existed even after the Third Council of Carthage supposedly settled the list!


TCE:  Regarding the credentials of Justin Martyr as an 'expert witness', we note that he called Socrates 'a Christian before Christ'!  Many people, even in the modern age, are deceived by considering that those of great learning, wisdom, and full of virtuous tendencies, must surely be received into heaven on their death.  But, despite the abundance of heresies by Papal Rome, the Bible makes it clear that there is only one sure way to heaven - through belief in the Lord Jesus Christ who shed His blood once for the salvation of all who believe on Him and His Sacrifice at Calvary without tying any shred of their own 'filthy rags' (a.k.a. 'good works' - Isaiah 64:6) to this Perfect Sacrifice (Hebrews 10).  Socrates tells us clearly that he did not share this heavenly hope when he made this apology before his decidedly unrighteous judges:  'And now, O judges!  Ye are going hence to live; and I am going hence to die:  Which of these is best, the gods know; but, I suppose, no man does.'  No man knows, according to Socrates who spoke of 'gods', while Scripture tells us there is only One True God and all others called 'gods' by the pagans are nothing more than idols, demons, or the chief fallen angel Satan!  How different was the testimony of the Apostle Paul who knew exactly where he was going and which God was going to raise him from the dead and was thus inspired to write:  'I desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better!' (Philippians 1:23).  This was not a one-off aberration by Justin who shared the view with other second-century 'apologists' who appealed for toleration on the grounds that the best Greek philosophers taught very similar 'truths' to those shared by many 'Christians' of his acquaintance when he wrote:  'We teach the same as the Greeks, though we alone are hated for what we teach.'  'Some among us', wrote Tertullian, 'who are versed in ancient literature, have written books to prove that we have embraced no tenets for which we have not the support of common and public literature.'  Thus Tertullian reveals his ignorance of the difference between the True Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and the religions and philosophies peddled by uninspired men.  'The teachings of Plato', says Justin again, 'are not alien to those of Christ; and the same is true of the Stoics' and 'Heracleitus and Socrates lived in accordance with the divine Logos', and should be reckoned as Christians.  Clement claimed that Plato wrote 'by inspiration of God' and thereby revealed his own failings.  Augustine wrote that 'only a few words and phrases' need be changed to bring Platonism into complete accord with Christianity.  The reason for the incorporation of pseudologos (Apocryphal!) into the canon they possessed becomes crystal clear when we observe that the ethics of contemporary paganism were almost identical with those of the Christians of repute of his day.  Papal Roman Catholicism proves to be historically continuous with the old pagan civilization which continued to live alongside and then within Papal Rome after its own traditions and customs were beaten into submission and they acquiesced when they saw that their new papal masters were only too happy to accept their goddess(es) (who they accepted as appearing in the form of an extremely un-Scriptural 'Mary') and rituals (a false priesthood and sacramental system) into Papal Rome - with only slight renaming and modifications, as necessary.

So we find more evidence that the 'Church Fathers' were not only heavily influenced by Platonic/ Hellenistic views, but also confused to the point of being unable to fully agree on the canon even when they realised that the Jews outside of the Diaspora did not accept the 'deuterocanonical' works.  To claim that 'in certain quarters the spell of Palestinian-Jewish tradition was not fully cast off for some time' is to reveal that they failed to appreciate the arguments of the Council of Jamnia or the fact that 'Jewry by that time had everywhere discarded the Alexandrian books, and Melito's Canon consists exclusively of the protocanonicals minus Esther'.  That 'an anti-Jewish polemical purpose' might admittedly be part of their reasoning is no surprise when the overall history of the 'Church Fathers' who influenced Papal Rome - leading to a long history of anti-Semitism - is considered!  Even the claim that 'Irenaeus, always a witness of the first rank, on account of his broad acquaintance with ecclesiastical tradition ... vouches that Baruch was deemed on the same footing as Jeremias, and that the narratives of Susanna and Bel and the Dragon were ascribed to Daniel' is no proof that he was not merely applying the views from Alexandria, just as The Catholic Encyclopedia admits that 'Alexandrian tradition is represented by the weighty authority of Origen'.  The remaining claims do not change the facts at all, for they clearly admit that the views of the 'Church Fathers' and Origen were 'Influenced, doubtless, by the Alexandrian-Jewish usage of acknowledging in practice the extra writings as sacred while theoretically holding to the narrower Canon of Palestine ... [Origen's] catalogue of the Old Testament Scriptures contains only the protocanonical books, though it follows the order of the Septuagint'.  In the same way that Papal Rome clutches at the writings of Jerome which seem to contradict his clear views on the canon, we find The Catholic Encyclopedia hoping that this sentence -  'Origen employs all the deuterocanonicals as Divine Scriptures and ... defends the sacredness of Tobias, Judith, and the fragments of Daniel, at the same time implicitly asserting the autonomy of the Church in fixing the Canon' - will be accepted as proof that he supported her dogmas!

Finally, we should not forget that there were a number of divergences within the canon of the New Testament even after the Third Council of Carthage (397 AD) supposedly settled the list!  Letters like 'Third Corinthians' and 'The Epistle to the Laodiceans' continued to be used in some churches and Codex Sinaiticus (fourth century) included Barnabas and The Shepherd of Hermas, while Alexandrinus (fifth century) had 1 Clement and 2 Clement 1:1-12:5; and Claromontanus (sixth century) mentioned Barnabas, The Shepherd, the Acts of Paul, and the Apocalypse of Peter.  Thus we find that the organisation that was supposedly led by 'Papal infallibility' could still not emphatically settle the canon in all the 'Christian' communities it controlled into the sixth century - or even 1200 years later, as we have already shown!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ...

The canon of the Old Testament during the fourth, and first half of the fifth, century

In this period the position of the deuterocanonical literature is no longer as secure as in the primitive age. The doubts which arose should be attributed largely to a reaction against the apocryphal or pseudo-Biblical writings with which the East especially had been flooded by heretical and other writers. Negatively, the situation became possible through the absence of any Apostolic or ecclesiastical definition of the Canon . The definite and inalterable determination of the sacred sources, like that of all Catholic doctrines, was in the Divine economy left to gradually work itself out under the stimulus of questions and opposition. Alexandria, with its elastic Scriptures, had from the beginning been a congenial field for apocryphal literature, and St. Athanasius, the vigilant pastor of that flock, to protect it against the pernicious influence, drew up a catalogue of books with the values to be attached to each. First, the strict canon and authoritative source of truth is the Jewish Old Testament, Esther excepted. Besides, there are certain books which the Fathers had appointed to be read to catechumens for edification and instruction; these are the Wisdom of Solomon, the Wisdom of Sirach (Ecclesiasticus), Esther, Judith, Tobias, the Didache, or Doctrine of the Apostles, the Shepherd of Hermas . All others are apocrypha and the inventions of heretics (Festal Epistle for 367). Following the precedent of Origen and the Alexandrian tradition, the saintly doctor recognized no other formal canon of the Old Testament than the Hebrew one; but also, faithful to the same tradition, he practically admitted the deutero books to a Scriptural dignity, as is evident from his general usage. At Jerusalem there was a renascence, perhaps a survival, of Jewish ideas, the tendency there being distinctly unfavourable to the deuteros. St. Cyril of that see, while vindicating for the Church the right to fix the Canon, places them among the apocrypha and forbids all books to be read privately which are not read in the churches.  In Antioch and Syria the attitude was more favourable. St. Epiphanius shows hesitation about the rank of the deuteros; he esteemed them, but they had not the same place as the Hebrew books in his regard. The historian Eusebius attests the widespread doubts in his time ; he classes them as antilegomena, or disputed writings, and, like Athanasius, places them in a class intermediate between the books received by all and the apocrypha . The 59th (or 60th) canon of the provincial Council of Laodicea (the authenticity of which however is contested) gives a catalogue of the Scriptures entirely in accord with the ideas of St. Cyril of Jerusalem . On the other hand, the Oriental versions and Greek manuscripts of the period are more liberal ; the extant ones have all the deuterocanonicals and, in some cases, certain apocrypha .

TCE:  Here The Catholic Encyclopedia admits that 'In this period the position of the deuterocanonical literature is no longer as secure as in the primitive age. The doubts which arose should be attributed largely to a reaction against the apocryphal or pseudo-Biblical writings with which the East especially had been flooded by heretical and other writers. Negatively, the situation became possible through the absence of any Apostolic or ecclesiastical definition of the Canon'.  There is clearly no point in Papal Rome claiming the existence of Peter as Pope, 'Papal infallibility' or 'Apostolic Succession' when their Encyclopedia can acknowledge their was a 'primitive age' and that 'a reaction against the apocryphal or pseudo-Biblical writings ... by heretical and other writers' could possibly have occurred and influenced a church which, according to Rome, was protected by this inheritance:  'thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it' (Matthew 16:18 - KJV).  It is hard to reconcile the claims made by Rome with the sad admission that 'The definite and inalterable determination of the sacred sources, like that of all Catholic doctrines, was in the Divine economy left to gradually work itself out under the stimulus of questions and opposition' which is no more than the worst (more contemporary) cults, such as the Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormons, effect to cover-up the obvious fact that they have all blundered along, from error to error and then back again, for all of their known history.  The Catholic Encyclopedia even admits that 'Alexandria [had] elastic Scriptures [and was] from the beginning ... a congenial field for apocryphal literature' - exactly as we have described and an obvious threat to the genuine canon.  It admits the dangerous situation we have described to the point where it fully supports our proven points: the Jews in Jerusalem held to a solid canon and rejected the 'deuterocanonical' works and the 'Church Fathers', even 'Athanasius, the [supposedly!] vigilant pastor of that flock' and shows that, even when accepting 'the strict canon and authoritative source of truth [that] is the Jewish Old Testament, Esther excepted' they still allowed 'certain books which the Fathers had appointed to be read to catechumens for edification and instruction' to infiltrate their churches!

It is one thing to claim that these 'Church Fathers' were protecting the flock and preserving the canon, but we can see evidence that orthodox believers (whether Jewish or Gentile Christians, or holders to Old Testament Judaism) would have been part of those 'At Jerusalem [where] there was a renascence, perhaps a survival, of Jewish ideas, the tendency there being distinctly unfavourable to the deuteros.There is even the admission that 'the Oriental versions and Greek manuscripts of the period [were] more liberal; the extant ones have all the deuterocanonicals and, in some cases, certain apocrypha'.  Liberal equates to error when it comes to Scriptural truth, as Papal Rome has shown throughout its history.

The Catholic Encyclopedia also goes on to admit our other points:

The influence of Origen's and Athanasius's restricted canon naturally spread to the West. St. Hilary of Poitiers and Rufinus followed their footsteps, excluding the deuteros from canonical rank in theory, but admitting them in practice. The latter styles them 'ecclesiastical' books, but in authority unequal to the other Scriptures. St. Jerome cast his weighty suffrage on the side unfavourable to the disputed booksIn appreciating his attitude we must remember that Jerome lived long in Palestine, in an environment where everything outside the Jewish Canon was suspect, and that, moreover, he had an excessive veneration for the Hebrew text, the Hebraica veritas as he called itIn his famous 'Prologus Galeatus', or Preface to his translation of Samuel and Kings, he declares that everything not Hebrew should be classed with the apocrypha, and explicitly says that Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Tobias, and Judith are not on the Canon. These books, he adds, are read in the churches for the edification of the people, and not for the confirmation of revealed doctrine. An analysis of Jerome's expressions on the deuterocanonicals, in various letters and prefaces, yields the following results: first, he strongly doubted their inspiration; secondly, the fact that he occasionally quotes them, and translated some of them as a concession to ecclesiastical tradition, is an involuntary testimony on his part to the high standing these writings enjoyed in the Church at large, and to the strength of the practical tradition which prescribed their readings in public worshipObviously, the inferior rank to which the deuteros were relegated by authorities like Origen, Athanasius, and Jerome, was due to too rigid a conception of canonicity, one demanding that a book, to be entitled to this supreme dignity, must be received by all, must have the sanction of Jewish antiquity, and must moreover be adapted not only to edification, but also to the 'confirmation of the doctrine of the Church', to borrow Jerome's phrase.

TCE:  Again, we see the admission of our earlier points and that The Catholic Encyclopedia can only accuse Jerome of 'excessive veneration for the Hebrew text' and a hopeful claim that 'Obviously, the inferior rank to which the deuteros were relegated by authorities like Origen, Athanasius, and Jerome, was due to too rigid a conception of canonicity.'  Considering the Platonic/Hellenistic liberalism exhibited by so many 'Church Fathers' we are surprised that The Catholic Encyclopedia would even attempt to accuse the men it reveres of such 'sins' as 'excessive veneration' for the Word of God!  Such a claim is indicative of a sinful and heretical spirit that fails to apply the whole consul of Scripture to its search for holiness and, as a direct result of its painful inability to guard itself against the ingress of corruption and deception through its ignorance and arrogance towards the Word of God, is bound to fall into the same snares that are detailed so clearly from the very beginning of the history of God's dealings with man!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ... 

But while eminent scholars and theorists were thus depreciating the additional writings, the official attitude of the Latin Church, always favourable to them, kept the majestic tenor of its way. Two documents of capital importance in the history of the canon constitute the first formal utterance of papal authority on the subject. The first is the so-called 'Decretal of Gelasius', de recipiendis et non recipiendis libris, the essential part of which is now generally attributed to a synod convoked by Pope Damasus in the year 382. The other is the Canon of Innocent I, sent in 405 to a Gallican bishop in answer to an inquiry. Both contain all the deuterocanonicals, without any distinction, and are identical with the catalogue of Trent . The African Church, always a staunch supporter of the contested books, found itself in entire accord with Rome on this question. Its ancient version, the Vetus Latina (less correctly the Itala), had admitted all the Old Testament Scriptures . St. Augustine seems to theoretically recognize degrees of inspiration ; in practice he employs protos and deuteros without any discrimination whatsoever. Moreover in his 'De Doctrinâ Christianâ' he enumerates the components of the complete Old Testament . The Synod of Hippo (393) and the three of Carthage (393, 397, and 419), in which, doubtless, Augustine was the leading spirit, found it necessary to deal explicitly with the question of the Canon, and drew up identical lists from which no sacred books are excluded. These councils base their canon on tradition and liturgical usage. For the Spanish Church valuable testimony is found in the work of the heretic Priscillian, 'Liber de Fide et Apocryphis'; it supposes a sharp line existing between canonical and uncanonical works, and that the Canon takes in all the deuteros.

TCE: While The Catholic Encyclopedia admits to the role of theologians and scholars in contemporary Rome it can accuse past 'eminent scholars and theorists [of] depreciating the additional writings'.  On what grounds?  The men who they then appeal to as authorities were heretical popes - who came along quite regularly: Innocent I (401-17 AD) and Gelasius I (492-6 AD), for example, proclaimed that babies went straight to Hell (not Purgatory) if they died, even though baptized!  Who in their right mind would appeal to such men as authorities?  A typical historical example of the contrary judgement of 'Church Fathers' is found in the work of Hesychius, an Egyptian bishop.  He was a scholar who has been identified as a reviser of both the text of the Septuagint and of some of the New Testament Gospels and whose work was mentioned more than once by Jerome who stated that it was generally accepted in Egypt, as was that of his fellow-martyr, Lucian of Antioch, both in Asia Minor and the East (Hieron. Praef. in Paralipom. ad Chromat. Ep. 107, repeated in Apologia II. adv. Rufin. vol. i. p. 763, Paris, 1609).  Jerome also refers to it as 'exemplaria Alexandrina' (Esai. lviii. 11), but little is known of this edition of the LXX other than it was doubtless an attempt, like that of Lucian, to purify the text in use in Egypt, by collating various manuscripts and by working on them in a manner similar to that employed by Jerome.  However, Jerome typically wrote with some contempt of Hesychius' labours in the field of Old Testament recension and, even more concerning, his and Lucian's work on the Gospels.  Jerome claimed that they added so much to the text that he essentially charged them with falsifying the Gospels and subsequently rendering this work 'apocryphal' (Hieron. Praef. in Evang. cad Damasum).  Consider the light of all the evidence we have already looked at and, in particular, the way in which Jerome probably put in more hard work in his translations and recensions than any other 'Church Father', yet was still given advice by the less gifted Augustine and was then ignored by many popes who had even less ability.  By looking at this we can easily recognise a continuously stumbling, chaotic path to the Vulgate that was finally, yet unconvincingly, claimed as the real canon at the Council of Trent (in 1546 AD) with the threat of 'anathema' to those who may have decided to share the reasonable opinion of many others, all the way back in history to the Apostles, and reject the Apocrypha!  This historical record also reveals a path into anything but 'all truth' - and is clearly and totally at odds with the path of guidance that Jesus told His disciples the Holy Spirit would deliver - that is clearly one that would lead 'into all truth' (John 16:7ff.).

While The Catholic Encyclopedia repeats the mantra that 'The Synod of Hippo (393) and the three of Carthage (393, 397, and 419), in which, doubtless, Augustine was the leading spirit, found it necessary to deal explicitly with the question of the Canon, and drew up identical lists from which no sacred books are excluded' it should be noted that the role which church councils played in the process is more than slightly overstated.  These North African Councils were regional synods, not universal or ecumenical councils, and only about 50 bishops from the provinces of Africa attended each - and they did not have authority to speak for the whole fourth-century church.  Claiming they 'drew up identical lists from which no sacred books are excluded' omits the inconvenient fact that the list of books accepted by the Council of Hippo no longer exists.  Although the 'Council of Carthage' is believed to have repeated the same list and its decree on the matter still exists to speculate in the absence of solid facts is no substitute for facts.  It is also important to note that by the time these councils addressed the matter at the close of the fourth century, the canon or list of books recognized as forming the New Testament was well-established, as Professor F. F. Bruce commented:

'What is particularly important to notice is that the New Testament canon was not demarcated by the arbitrary decree of any Church Council.
When at last a Church Council - the Synod of Carthage in A.D. 397 - listed the twenty-seven books of the New Testament, it did not confer upon them any authority which they did not already possess, but simply recorded their previously established canonicity'.  (F. F. Bruce, The Books and the Parchments, London: Pickering Inglis, 1950, p111)

While Christians who reject Papal Rome have never accepted any decision of the North African Councils regarding the Apocrypha, it can never be argued that 'were it not for the Papal Roman Catholic Church no one would know with certainty which books belong in the Bible' for the evidence shows that the popes have rarely uniformly agreed on anything!

When The Catholic Encyclopedia makes an appeal to the 'Decretal of Gelasius' it hopes readers do not know that the 'decretals' are frauds (and, as in this case, authors often unknown!) which became the source of ideas that remain as established dogmas today, such as the saying attributed in the 'Isidorian Decretals' to Pope Julius (ca. 338 AD) that "the Church of Rome, by a singular privilege, has the right of opening and shutting the gates of heaven to whom she will" and that the popes inherit "innocence and sanctity from Peter" and are therefore holy and infallible and all Christendom must tremble before them!

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ...

The canon of the Old Testament from the middle of the fifth to the close of the seventh century

This period exhibits
a curious exchange of opinions between the West and the East, while ecclesiastical usage remained unchanged, at least in the Latin Church . During this intermediate age the use of St. Jerome's new version of the Old Testament (the Vulgate ) became widespread in the Occident. With its text went Jerome's prefaces disparaging the deuterocanonicals, and under the influence of his authority the West began to distrust these and to show the first symptoms of a current hostile to their canonicity.  On the other hand, the Oriental Church imported a Western authority which had canonized the disputed books, viz., the decree of Carthage, and from this time there is an increasing tendency among the Greeks to place the deuteros on the same level with the others--a tendency, however, due more to forgetfulness of the old distinction than to deference to the Council of Carthage.

TCE:  Here we read the admission that 'Jerome's prefaces disparaging the deuterocanonicals' clearly existed and were included with 'Jerome's new version of the Old Testament (the Vulgate)' so that 'under the influence of his authority the West began to distrust these and to show the first symptoms of a current hostile to their canonicity'!  We have already shown that these were not the first signs of 'distrust', for the 'Church Fathers' and others were never in full agreement on the place of these 'deuterocanonicals'.  There is even the admission of an 'increasing tendency among the Greeks to place the deuteros on the same level with the others ... a tendency, however, due more to forgetfulness of the old distinction than to deference to the Council of Carthage'.  This being so, how can Papal Roman Catholics claim that this council - or the other councils - held strong sway over people and the makeup of the canon?

The Catholic Encyclopedia cont. ...   

The canon of the Old Testament during the Middle Ages

The Greek Church

The result of this tendency among
the Greeks was that about the beginning of the twelfth century they possessed a canon identical with that of the Latins, except that it took in the apocryphal III Machabees. That all the deuteros were liturgically recognized in the Greek Church at the era of the schism in the ninth century, is indicated by the 'Syntagma Canonum' of Photius.

TCE:  Photius (883 AD) published a 'Syntagma canonum' and a 'Nomocanon' with the title Προκανὼν, because it was placed before the canons. This 'Nomocanon' was produced at the command of Constantine VI, revised, and took the place of the 'Nomocanon' of John of Antioch until it was used more frequently than Photius' Syntagma, [which contained the actual text of the canons of the councils down to 880 AD].  It was used by many commentators while the collection of the councils was neglected so that it was accepted that the Nomocanon became the true foundation of the ecclesiastical law of the East.

There is so much more to the story of the canon that The Catholic Encyclopedia omits, such as  incidental evidences of differences of opinion over certain books, e.g. the Revelation of John which was disputed by Nicephorus as late as the 9th century and placed among the disputed books, while Photius during the same period accepted it as Scripture (as did Arethas who wrote a commentary upon it).  Clearly, the Greeks of the 12th century also added their own 'favourite' (3 Maccabees - which Papal Rome finally rejected in 1546 AD!) to the 'Latin canon' so they were also obviously not content with the supposedly official papal version.

(Continued on page 329)

Full Menu

Topics discussed on pages responding to Roman Catholics
Section 53-74

How can Papal Rome explain the fact that not all of the Apocrypha was accepted at Trent?

There are no known Septuagint manuscripts existing earlier than the fourth century that contain the Apocrypha!

A 'possible' source of a Scriptural quotation - The Bodily Assumption of Moses (cf.  Jude 9) - is rejected by Rome as non-canonical!

Papal Rome quotes Jerome as if he approved the Apocrypha - but he explicitly declared them un-canonical!

Rome's Cardinals Ximenes and Cajetan published a Commentary on All the Authentic Historical Books of the Old Testament (1532) - it excluded the Apocrypha!

Papal Rome went out of her way to burn both Bibles and those daring to circulate them?

To actually make the understanding of Biblical truth a crime punishable by death says everything about the Papacy!

Impossible for Papal Rome to prove that true believers in Israel did not always consider Apocrypha with suspicion!

The Catholic Encyclopedia:  'The original and proper sense of the term apocryphal as applied to the pretended sacred books was early obscured'

Your authority - The Catholic Encyclopedia - speaks approvingly of works clearly produced by dangerous heretics!

Catholics and Gnostics were concerned in writing these (non-canonical/apocryphal) fictions!?

'Mary's Assumption' was derived from the Gnostic 'Falling Asleep of the Holy Mother of God'!

The 'Letter of Lentulus' is rejected by The Catholic Encyclopedia on the grounds that 'Protestants' use to reject all of the apocrypha!

The 'Acts of St. Peter' describe 'the triumph of St. Peter over Simon Magus at Rome'!

The Catholic Encyclopedia evidence proves how poorly Papal Rome identified the true canon!

The 'Apocalypse of Mary' - merely the outcome of an extravagant devotion?!

'Apocryphal works' known to the Jews were not widely accepted but considered 'curiosities'!

What does Papal Rome and parts of the Jewish world have in common?

Scripture cannot be overturned by any Papist - and ad hominem attacks fail in like manner!

How does an expert consider the overall accuracy and usefulness of the Septuagint?

Experts draw attention to the variant readings of the Septuagint - and that it never claims to be inspired!

More truth regarding the Vulgate and the King James Version of the Bible

Since Rome could no longer control Bible-reading they set out to use the 'Protestant' Bible Societies!

Further immovable nails in the coffin carrying the claims of Papal Rome concerning the Vulgate and the Apocrypha!

Rome defended the Vulgate for centuries - but now produces 'Bibles' with the help of 'heretical Protestants'!

Tests used to support the 'Protestant' Canon come from two logical categories

Prefaces to Jerome's Early Works - Preface to the Chronicle of Eusebius

The Apocrypha was rejected by many - e.g. Josephus, Philo, Origen, Tertullian, Athanasius - and Jerome!

Nobody can stop God preserving and delivering His Word to His chosen people

God certainly doesn't need any flawed people who claim to be His Church to preserve His Word!

Roman Catholic logic demands that 1, 2, 3 and 4 Maccabees should be in their Vulgate!

The Jewish Encyclopedia supports the views of Josephus, Philo, Jerome, et al, for exclusion of the Apocrypha!

The proven sloppy copying of (even) Jerome's Vulgate by Roman Catholics contrasts very badly with Judaism!

Many Rabbis of the branches of Judaism had a common canon and agreed that the Apocrypha were non-canonical!

Judaism had a solid view of canonicity long before the contradictions of the 'Church Fathers'!

Small groups of heretics cannot alter the clear testimonies of renowned historians, Josephus and Philo!

Catholic scholar, Dr. Gigot, exhibits a more mature and factual view of the Septuagint!

The Catholic Encyclopedia lies: 'The deuterocanonicals ... long ago gained a secure footing in the Catholic Bible!

The Catholic Encyclopedia ignores the fact that the Council of Trent did not insert the whole Apocrypha into their Bible!

The Catholic Encyclopedia fails to identify the Satanic influence of the 'Hellenistic largeness of spirit'!

The Catholic Encyclopedia admits that the 'infallible popes' took until 1546 to come to this 'pronouncement on the Canon' - thus claims that early 'Councils' decreed the Canon are proven to be utterly false!

Divergences within the canon of the New Testament of Papal Rome existed even after the Third Council of Carthage supposedly settled the list!

We prove that Papal Rome could not settle the canon - even 1200 years later!

Papal Rome is critical of anyone, whether it is Jerome or Döllinger, who dares contradict 'the Church'!

If the 'canon' was so important to Rome, why did the Council of Florence fail to 'formally' record it?

Cardinal Gustav von Hohenlohe remarked: 'I need no other argument against papal infallibility than this single one, that in my entire life I never met a man who was less particular about the truth than Pius IX.'

Rome desperately appealing to the canon of the Old Testament among their brothers in similar cults!

Pope Francis: "It is the Communists Who Think Like Christians"

The evidences of Papal errors and contradictions throughout history are utterly palpable!

Papal Councils and Augustine's opinion did not prevent division over the Apocryphal books after 419 AD!

Rome's 'Tradition' invents un-Scriptural doctrines & practices, such as  the 'Brown scapular' of Mary!

What happened when John XXII was denounced as a heretic by Emperor Louis of Bavaria?

Athanasius gave a list of genuine Biblical books (367 AD) after some were led astray by 'the villainy of certain men ..'

Rome's un-Biblical ideas - prayers beads, burning incense and candles before icons, flagellation - from the East!

Augustine - probably the champion of more heretical ideas than any other 'Church Father'?!

Jerome may appear well-intentioned - but he was deeply infected with false teaching!

Trying to argue against 'The Council of Jamnia' is to go against Jerome!

Why 'The Epistle of Barnabas' and 'The Gospel of Barnabas' are rejected from the canon!

More on 'The Shepherd of Hermas' - the longest of all the non-Canonical writings wrongly accepted by some 'Fathers'!

The early 'Church Fathers' clearly held many heretical views!

Jerome accepted the Deutero-canonical books?!

How does Papal Rome try and support its un-Biblical doctrine that 'Mary is the Mother of God'?

More truth about 'Sola Scriptura'!

More nails in the coffin of Papal Rome's 'Tradition'!

In 1992, the 'infallibles' of the Vatican, after a 14-month study, finally admitted that Galileo was right! 

Latin is the Divinely constituted and appointed language for Christianity' - how come 'infallible' John Paul II dumped the whole charade?!

Do all Roman Catholics believe 'Church Latin is the Divinely constituted and appointed language of Christianity'?

Real facts about early Bibles in English!

More evidence on the continued corruption of the Vulgate!

When did the English illiterate begin reading the Word of God for themselves?!

Evidence from Papal Rome confirms her suppression of the Bible!

More confirmation of Papal Rome's suppression of the Bible!

Why did Adolf Hitler promise to finish the work of Papal Rome?

Papal Rome is a Satanic Killer Cult!

Papal Rome's Inquisition vies with Islamic atrocities for being the most blatant sign of a Satanic religion!

Satanic Rome declared the Holy Scriptures in the 'vulgar tongue' produced more harm than benefit!

Evangelical Christians working for years in Spain never met even one Catholic who was saved or knew how to be saved!

Papal Rome claims ex cathedra statements are part of the Word of God - but have no records of them!

Hans Küng and the flawed views shared by Jerome, Augustine, Benedict - et al!

Every Papal Roman Catholic can be his own pope on every matter - so being a 'Cafeteria Catholic' is fine!

More facts on martyrs burned at the stake by Papal Rome for daring to produce Bible translations!

How John Paul II came to 'apologise' (December 17, 1999) for Papal Rome's betrayal and murder of Jan Hus!

How allegorization by 'Church Fathers' led to serious Papal errors!

How Jerome's allegorical errors led him into foolish hagiography of hermits and monasticism!

Jerome's un-Scriptural views of women and marriage that are hidden by Papal Rome!

How Papal Rome tried to 're-invent' the Vulgate - but merely exposed its spiritual inabilities again!

How Scripture reveals that 'the married state' obliterates Papal Rome's claims for celibacy!

Augustine's ideas eventually led to the uniting of Church and State and the Murderous Inquisition!

How 'the Reformers' tried to equal the 'Church Fathers' in complicating the beautiful simplicity of the Gospel of Grace!

How the 'Joint Declaration of Justification' (October 31st, 1999) exposes both Lutherans and Papal Rome as Biblical morons!

Know the reality of eternity in heaven by believing on Jesus Christ as your Lord & Saviour!

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