The Apocrypha, Lesson 12: 1-2 Maccabees, Pt. 2

Cleansing the Temple 2

Recap A representative of Antiochus confronts Mattathias in his town to be the first to offer a pagan sacrifice and become a “friend” of the king.  When Mattathias refuses, another man steps in, hoping to receive favor.  Angry, Mattathias kills both the opportunist and the king’s agent.  The Maccabean revolt begins. At first, Mattathias focuses, […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 11: 1-2 Maccabees

11, Timline Leading Up to the Maccabees

Introduction 1 Maccabees describes the attempts at Hellenization by the Seleucid ruler, Antiochus IV Epiphanes (1:1-2:70), moving on to cover the exploits of Judas Maccabeus (3:1-9:22) and his brothers Jonathan (9:23-12:53) and Simon (13:1-16:24).  Judas and his brothers battle to remove the Greek influence from Israel. The book was written after 134 BC since the […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 10: Tobit, Pt. 3

We finished with Tobias sending Azariah (the angel Raphael) to retrieve the 30 years’ worth of wages.  After the 14-day wedding celebration, Tobias and Azariah plan to head home.  We now get a snapshot of what is taking place Tobit and Anna.   Tobias and Azariah Return Home 10:1 Meanwhile, day by day, Tobit kept […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 9: Tobit, Pt. 2

Tobias and Sarah are Married

Last week, we learned of Tobit, who became blind from bird droppings.  After remembering he had saved about 30 years’ worth of wages, he sends his son, Tobias, to retrieve his wealth.  So Tobias readies himself for the journey.   The Introduction to Some New Characters Today, some new characters will come our way. Gabael: […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 8: Tobit, Pt. 1

Tobias Leaving His Mother and Father

Introduction Though Tobit includes historical reality in its background setting, it is not history but a religious novel to teach the faithful.  Like Judith, this book contains information known not to be true, drawing the hearer to focus on the religious content, not the historical facts.  For example, the sequence of Assyrian kings is incomplete […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 7: Judith, Pt. 2

Judith with Sword

Recap Last week, we learned Judith “put sandals on her feet, and put on her anklets, bracelets, rings, earrings, and all her other ornaments, and made herself very beautiful, to entice the eyes of all men who might see her.”  So, Judith and a servant make their way to the Assyrian camp.   Judith Goes […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 6: Judith, Pt. 1

Judith

Introduction Judith is work of religious fiction without the pretense of recounting actual history.  The story opens with a fictionalized Nebuchadnezzar making war on an invented King of the Medes, Arphaxad.  The first hearers of Judith would catch this, clueing them in to understand Judith for its religious value.  The real Nebuchadnezzar was king of […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 4: The Greek Portions of Daniel, Pt. 2

Two Elders Trying to Get Susanna to Sin

Last week, we looked at the Prayer of Azariah and the Hymn of the Three Young Men, which are placed between Daniel 3:23 and 3:24.  Today, we study the story of Susanna, which becomes Daniel, chapter 13.    Susanna Susanna is the story of a woman, whom two “dirty old men” accused of committing adultery.  […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 3: The Greek Portions of Daniel, Pt. 1

Fourth Man in the Fire

The Protestant edition of Daniel is written in Hebrew (1:1-2:3, 8:1-12:13) and Aramaic (2:4-7:28).  The Daniel of the Septuagint is all Greek, with some portions not being a translation but with an original Greek text.  These include a couple of liturgical pieces: The Prayer of Azariah and the Hymn of the Three Young Men, which […]

The Apocrypha, Lesson 2: How We Lost the Apocrypha

Apocrypha Removed

Last week, we learned what the Scriptures were for Jesus and his Apostles: The Septuagint, the Greek-language version of the Old Testament.  Jesus also affirmed this in His Scripture quotes, which favored the Septuagint and when He told the Sadducees they didn’t know the Scripture, referring to the book of Tobit (Matthew 22:29).  In 397 […]