This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Introducing the Apocrypha: Message, Context,…

Introducing the Apocrypha: Message, Context, and Significance (edition 2018)

by David A. deSilva (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations
1712102,506 (3.8)None
Title:Introducing the Apocrypha: Message, Context, and Significance
Authors:David A. deSilva (Author)
Info:Baker Academic (2018), Edition: 2, 528 pages
Collections:Read, Your library
Tags:Apocrypha, Biblical Studies, Second temple Judaism

Work details

Introducing the Apocrypha: Message, Context, and Significance by David A. DeSilva



Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

Showing 2 of 2
Summary: An introduction to the books of the Apocrypha, covering matters of content, authorship, date, setting, textual transmission, and theological themes and influence in both second temple and post-second temple Judaism and early Christianity.

For many from Protestant denominations, the collection of books that fall under the title "Apocrypha" are considered ones that "didn't make the cut" and perhaps suspect. However, most of these books are part of the Bibles of two-thirds of all Christians in the world. In his Introduction to this work, David A. deSilva also makes the point that this collection is invaluable in understanding second temple Judaism that is the setting for the ministry of Jesus and Christian beginnings as well as the influence of these writings on the New Testament authors and what they wrote. He also introduces us to the fact that there are different collections (Septuagint, Vaticanus, and Alexandrinus) and the challenges of defining this collection.

This work is an introduction and, like introductions to Old and New Testaments, covers introductory matters like the message of the work, authorship (often difficult to pin down), date, and setting, as well as the textual transmission, and different extant textual traditions. In the cases of Daniel and Esther, he shows how the additions are woven into, and differ from the canonical text. It is helpful, therefore to read this work with a copy of the Apocrypha at hand, preferably the New Revised Standard Version with Apocrypha, which is the version used throughout.

The author explores the distinctive theological themes and influences of particular books. He considers an overall Deuteronomistic theme of the promise of covenant blessing for Israel when they obey, curse when they disobey, and restoration when they return, cry out, and obey Torah. The theme emerges in the prayers, narratives, and precepts found in this collection. In some texts, such as 1 Maccabees, Israel faces a crisis, and faithful Jews experience deliverance. In others, martyrs receive assurance, or potential martyrs are delivered while the apostate or Gentiles face punishment. One can see how these books encouraged post-exilic Jews, particularly under Greco-Roman rule, as well as subsequent generations of Christians.

David A. deSilva states that this is a complete revision involving every chapter, far more consultation with experts in the field, incorporation of the latest scholarship, and an expanded bibliography. His clear summaries of content, theology, influence, and technical introductory matters make this a valuable adjunct for sitting down to read this collection. For those like myself, who have managed to avoid a reading of books that have encouraged Jews and Christians through the ages, deSilva made the case to change that. He neither resolves the canonical issues, nor argues a change, but that we read these works for what we can learn both about Christian origins, and for the encouragement we might derive from them.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. ( )
  BobonBooks | Jul 11, 2018 |
This is one of the most thorough and academic level books on the Apocrypha I've read. Each book is broken down into - structure, Textual nuances, author/date/setting, genre/purpose, historical references, theological contributions, and influence. ( )
  revslick | May 17, 2010 |
Showing 2 of 2
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
In honor of the God who was never without a witness in the world
First words
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0801031036, Paperback)

The status of the apocryphal (or deuterocanonical) books has been one of the longstanding areas of disagreement among various Christian traditions. David deSilva suggests, however, that whether one views these books as Scripture (Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Christians) or not (Protestant Christians), these books should be read and studied for their inherent value.

The books of the Apocrypha are a witness to faith, specifically the faith of Jewish people living from 200 B.C.E. to 100 C.E. Contemporary Christian readers find these books to be surprisingly relevant. In addition, they provide essential historical background for understanding the Judaism of Jesus¹ day and the Jewish matrix of early Christianity.

After explaining the value of studying the Apocrypha and surveying the historical context from which these writings emerged, deSilva proceeds through each book of the Apocrypha (as found in the NRSV). Using all the tools of a skilled interpreter, he provides the necessary background details (date, circumstances of writing, etc.) before surveying the content and message of each book. Along the way, readers are introduced to connections between the Apocrypha and the Old and New Testaments and are encouraged to embark upon their own exploration of these fascinating books.

Especially suitable for classroom settings, this substantive, up-to-date, and well-written volume is accessible to and will be enjoyed by clergy and laity as well.

Now in paperback.

"DeSilva does a fine job of placing the Apocrypha within the historical context of the Jewish world in which early Christianity was forged."--Publishers Weekly

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:51 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

No library descriptions found.

Quick Links

Popular covers


Average: (3.8)
2 2
3 1
4 4
5 3

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 133,438,073 books! | Top bar: Always visible