Roman Catholics and Evangelicals


Last updated Fri Feb 9 11:55:47 EST 2001

A Fallible Canon

It should be noted that while Protestants are fairly certain that the Apocrypha is not part of Scripture, they cannot be dogmatic about it. Catholics call the "Apocryphal" books "Deuterocanonical". This means canonized second - i.e. after the other books.

Most Protestants don't realize that the Deuterocanonicals include Hebrews, James, II Peter, II John, III John, Jude, Mark 16:9ff, John 8:1-12. These books and passages (along with others that didn't make it to the New Testament) were in dispute throughout the first 400 years of the church. For this reason, Martin Luther put them in an appendix along with the Old Testament Deuterocanonicals - which we call the "Apocrypha" today.

Protestants accept the New Testament Deuterocanonicals as inspired, but reject the Old Testament Deuterocanonicals (which I will call "Apocryphal" from now on because it is shorter). Why? Here are some points and counterpoints:

As a Protestant, I'll let the Protestants have the last word.

As a Sunday School boy, I was intrigued by what my teachers called "The 400 silent years". Whether or not you consider the Old Testament Deuterocanonicals inspired, they are essential for understanding the history of the Jews prior to the opening of the New Testament.

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