> <Apart from supporting doctrinal positions per se, the Apocrypha are also of
> significance for appreciating some texts in the OT as in Daniel and even more
> in the NT since the writers sometimes allude to materials in the apocrypha.
> One of the most significant in my mind is the list of the heroes of faith in
> Hebrews 11 which at the end is referring to the heroes of the Maccabean era,
> and apparently also making reference to the Ascension of Isaiah, a
> pseudepigraphical book. The early church was reading these books, and if
> Christians do not read them they miss the flavor of some things in the NT. 1
> and 2 Maccabees are particularly important; and Eccesiasticus is cited as
> Scripture in more than one early father.
> The "400 silent years" are not silent if you read the Apocrypha,
> Pseudepigrapha and the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Yes. & aside from any questions about inspiration, canonicity, &c, I
Maccabees is a crucial source for understanding subsequent Jewish & Christian
history, including the NT. (For a start, "the feast of the Dedication" in
Jn.10:22 was celebration of the rededication of the Temple - now Hanukkah - whose
institution is described in I Macc.4:36-60.)
George L. Murphy
"The Science-Theology Dialogue"
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