Bible "Added to" in 1546 - 05/10/2003

Mr. and Mrs. Rast,

This objection of "the Bible added to in 1546" is, at the very least, a late date. The objection is derived from the fact that Catholics include 7 books in the OT cannon which are not present in the Reformed cannon preported by Martin Luther and later reformers, otherwise known as the apocrypha.

Part of this objection is easy to answer, and part is hard, the easy part is that in 1546 Catholics did not add anything to the Bible, it was only proclaiming again what it had been teaching for 1200 years. The more complex objection is whether these books are in fact scripture and who has the athority to "add" them. I will answer the easy question first.

The date 1546 is late, just 100 years before at the Council of Florence in SESSION 11 February 4 th 1442. The council drew up the same list of books calling these scripture.

Below are the earliest lists of the canon of scripture, their daates are in bold, in case you didn't want to read them all, they pretty much all say the same thing. So at best the date will have to be changed from 1546 to 382 AD.

God bless you and yours. Daniel

"A brief addition shows what books really are received in the canon. These are the desiderata of which you wished to be informed verbally: of Moses five books, that is, of Genesis, of Exodus, of Leviticus, of Numbers, of Deuteronomy, and Josue, of Judges one book, of Kings four books, also Ruth, of the Prophets sixteen books, of Solomon five books, the Psalms. Likewise of the histories, Job one book, of Tobias one book, Esther one, Judith one, of the Machabees two, of Esdras two, Paralipomenon two books. Likewise of the New Testament: of the Gospels four books, of Paul the Apostle fourteen epistles, of John three, epistles of Peter two, an epistle of Jude, an epistle of James, the Acts of the Apostles, the Apocalypse of John." Pope Innocent(regn A.D. 401-417),Epistle to Exsuperius Bishop of Toulose,6:7,13(A.D. 405),in DEN,42

"[It has been decided] that nothing except the Canonical Scriptures should be read in the church under the name of the Divine Scriptures. But the Canonical Scriptures are:Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Josue, Judges, Ruth, four books of Kings, Paraleipomenon two books, Job, the Psalter of David, five books of Solomon, twelve books of the Prophets, Isaias, Jeremias, Daniel, Ezechiel, Tobias, Judith, Esther, two books of Esdras, two books of the Maccabees. Moreover, of the New Testament: Four books of the Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles one book, thirteen epistles of Paul the Apostle, one of the same to the Hebrews, two of Peter, three of John, one of James, one of Jude, the Apocalypse of John." Council of Carthage III,Canon 47(A.D. 397),in DEN,39-40

Besides the canonical Scriptures, nothing shall be read, in the church under the title of divine writings.'. The canonical books are:---Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, Ruth, the four books of Kings, the two books of Paraleipomena(Chronicles), Job, the Psalms of David, the five books of Solomon, the twelve books of the (Minor) Prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Ezekiel, Tobias, Judith, Esther, two books of Esdras, two books of the Maccabees. The books of the New Testament are:---the four Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, thirteen Epistles of S. Paul, one Epistle of S. Paul to the Hebrews, two Epistles of S. Peter, three Epistles of S. John, the Epistle of S. James, the Epistle of S. Jude, the Revelation of S. John. Concerning the confirmation of this canon, the transmarine Church shall be consulted." Council of Hippo, Canon 36 (A.D. 393), in HCC,2:400

"Likewise it has been said: Now indeed we must treat of the divine Scriptures, what the universal Catholic Church accepts and what she ought to shun.The order of the Old Testament begins here: Genesis one book, Exodus one book, Leviticus one book, Numbers one book, Deuteronomy one book, Josue Nave one book, Judges one book, Ruth one book, Kings four books, Paraleipomenon two books, Psalms one book, Solomon three books, Proverbs one book, Ecclesiastes one book, Canticle of Canticles one book, likewise Wisdom one book, Ecclesiasticus one book. Likewise the order of the Prophets. Isaias one book, Jeremias one book,with Ginoth, that is, with his lamentations, Ezechiel one book,Daniel one book, Osee one book, Micheas one book, Joel one book, Abdias one book, Jonas one book, Nahum one book, Habacuc one book, Sophonias one book, Aggeus one book, Zacharias one book, Malachias one book. Likewise the order of the histories. Job one book, Tobias one book, Esdras two books, Esther one book, Judith one book, Machabees


Hi Daniel. Thanks for writing to us. Yes, the apocryphal books had been part of Catholic tradition for quite some time before the Council of Trent. The reason we listed 1546 is because that was the year in which the Council gave it official canonization. We never intended to imply that those books had not been used by the Catholic Church previously. In fact, St. Jerome had been tasked with translating those books. He objected at first (see, due to their numerous historical and chronological errors (the same errors that kept the Hebrew scribes from proclaiming them to be part of Jewish scripture). So regarding the question as to the historical Catholic reliance on the apocryphal books, we have no disagreement. You asked a second question in your email, which you did not answer: "The more complex objection is whether these books are in fact scripture and who has the athority to 'add' them." Like the Hebrew scribes (and initially, St. Jerome), I contend that as God is not the author of error, we can not rely upon these books as being divinely inspired, and they should therefore have not been canonized. May God bless you.

In Christ,

Ben and Jennifer Rast
Contender Ministries