Refuting an Attack on the Deuterocanonicals

Refuting an Attack on the Deuterocanonicals

A Response to 11 ‘reasons’ that the Deuterocanonicals

Should be Thrown Out of the Bible

By Matt1618


In this article I am critiquing an article that is written by David Cloud at this location: Here he seeks to give eleven reasons why the Deuterocanonical books (He, and Protestants will usually mislabel these books as ‘Apocryphal’) are not accepted by Protestants as Scripture. Now a few of these reasons I have dealt with in a comprehensive manner at this location here: As I will go over all his objections, I will use similar arguments (though a little less comprehensive) that I used in that piece. However, some objections that Mr. Cloud makes in the article are not addressed in that particular study. The objections that Mr. Cloud uses against the Deuterocanonicals are representative of other attacks on the Deuterocanonicals that Protestants will use. Thus, I thought it would be helpful to address these specific objections used by Mr. Cloud to justify the Protestant’s ‘Reformers’ throwing out of seven books of inspired Scripture. These books are Wisdom, Baruch, 1 and 2 Maccabees, Judith, & Sirach, and Tobit. In addition, there are other sections that are in Daniel and Esther in the Catholic Bible that are not in the Protestant Bible.

There are even some errors in the introduction to the piece that I am bypassing for the sake of brevity and to not get sidetracked. Here I want to go to each of his eleven 'proofs' that the Deuterocanonical books are ‘apocryphal’, and not inspired. One thing we will notice in this study, is that Protestants will often use one standard as a basis for disqualifying the Deuterocanonical books, but do not apply these same standards to either the Old Testament books that they do accept (which will be termed hereon as ‘Protocanonical’ books) or to the New Testament. One will see Protestant write very large books that rightly defend the inspiration of the Protocanonical Books and the New Testament. Many pains will be made to explain seeming contradictions in either doctrine or fact. They will go out of their way to say that these inspired books do not really contradict themselves. In fact they are correct. These books are inspired and any discrepancy or contradictions are indeed only ‘apparent’ contradictions. However, once they approach the Deuterocanonicals no such benefit of the doubt is given at all. When they approach the Deuterocanonicals, all of a sudden besides not giving them the same benefit of the doubt that they give the other books, they sometimes attack their inspiration in the same way that atheists attack the inspiration of the New Testament and the Protocanonical books.

Now, Mr. Cloud’s objections to the Deuterocanonical books will be indented and highlighted in maroon, and my response will follow (As a look at his site shows that Mr. Cloud is a King James only person, any Scriptural references, except for the Deuterocanonical references which are in the Revised Standard Version, will use the King James version).

Following are the reasons the Apocrypha are rejected by Bible believers:

1. They are not included in the original Hebrew O.T. preserved by the Jews. Rom. 3:1-2 states that God used the Jews to preserve His Word; therefore, we know that He guided them in the rejection of the Apocryphal books from the canon of Scripture.

What does Romans 3:1-2 actually say? Does it say that the Jews will actually be the ones who canonize the Old Testament? Does it say that they have the authority to determine the canon over the canon that the Church that Jesus himself established? Jesus says to his New Covenant apostles ‘Whatsoever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatsoever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.’? (Mt. 16:18-19, Mt. 18:18). Well, here is the actual text of Romans 3:
1 What advantage then hath the Jew? Or what profit is there of circumcision? 2 Much every way; chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God.
This just says that the Jews were committed, or given the oracles of God, or Scripture. It does not say that they determine what the content of the Scriptures are, of either the New or Old Testament. In fact at the time of Jesus there was no determined Jewish canon. As Jesus gave his authority to the apostles, if this Scripture is to have any relevance at all, it would have to be well established before Jesus came and before any New Testament writer wrote anything that the Jewish canon was already well established, and the apostles and Jesus accepted that determination. In the New Testament there is no hint that this Old Testament was already canonized and determined by the Jews. There is no extant Jewish literature prior to Jesus that definitively said that the extent of the first century books was already determined. In fact, at the time of Jesus there were several factions within Judaism that had different understandings of what was inspired Scripture. For example, the Sadducees only accepted the first five books of the Bible, the Pentateuch. The Alexandrian Jews, had the Septuagint, which included the Deuterocanonical books. In fact many within that tradition thought that even the translation of all the books was inspired. And of course the Pharisaic tradition is the one that has the canon that Protestants now accept. Essene Jews had a different canon. Ethiopian Jews had and have a different canon. So if Romans 3:2 applies, to which Jewish faction does this apply? Paul certainly says nothing about the Jews determining the Old Testament canon, and beyond that, which Jewish faction to follow. Certainly not the Pharisaic faction whose influence on the Church Paul is lambasting (this is the faction that came into the Church, accepted Jesus, but tried to impose circumcision on Christians, which Paul strenuously is denying in Romans 3 and 4, and Galatians 2 and 3).

There was a Jewish council in Jamnia that was held approximately in 90 AD, that met, part of which was to determine what the canon of Scripture was. Well, if it was already determined in Jesus' time, why in the world would they have to meet at all on that matter? And the fact is, that even after 90 AD, it was not definitively settled in the Jewish camp on what was Scripture. For example, the book of Sirach in the second century was spoken of as though it was Scripture in the talmud (Documented in the url I give below). Also there was considerable doubts on the inspiration of Esther (which is nowhere cited as Scripture in the New Testament), Proverbs, Song of Solomon, and other books, for example which sparked much debate between the Jews even many years after Jamnia. In fact, in a comprehensive study of the issue, Protestant Arnold Sundberg verifies that the canon of the Jews was not settled until well after the first century, which would make the reference to Romans 3 totally irrelevant to the question at hand. This documentation is found here:

If some do argue that it is OK for the Jews to determine the Christian Old Testament canon per Romans 3:1-2, at what point do Jews stop having that authority? An important question is, if Christians were bound to follow the Jewish Rabbis, 60 years after they rejected Jesus and their decision on the canon of the Old Testament, what if they changed their decision now? At what point did the Church have authority? Not 33 or 34 AD? Not 65 AD? Not 90 AD? Not in the 2nd or 3rd century? Not even now? What if there was a Jewish Council that made a decision now that was different from that of Jamnia? Would Protestants who make this argument be bound to follow that decision? If Protestants were bound to follow the Jewish rabbi's assessment of the canon, applying to the Old Testament, how would it not apply to the New Testament as well? Does Mr. Cloud accept Jamnia’s decision on the New Testament as well? Jamnia says that the New Testament was uninspired, along with the Deuterocanonical books.

Now we do not have any record of any of the debates in Jamnia. However, it is well-known that Christianity was attacked in the Council of Jamnia. Those who were Christian were termed in a very derogatory manner and there are prayers in the Council that called for curses upon Christians. In fact, they may have looked at Wisdom 2:12-20, especially vv. 18-20 and undoubtedly saw this passage pointing to Jesus:

18 for if the righteous man is God's son, he will help him, and will deliver him (See Mt. 27:43) from the hand of his adversaries. 19 Let us test him with insult and torture, that we may find out how gentle he is, and make trial of his forbearance. 20 Let us condemn him to a shameful death, for, according to what he says, he will be protected."
Wisdom 2 does not say, “this is a prophecy about the Messiah”, but gives a powerful forecast of, and can only be explained by what happened to Jesus the Messiah who indeed was God's Son who was condemned to death, and mocked. It is obvious that those Jews in Jamnia who rejected Christianity saw that this passage pointed to Jesus and they could not have that. That would be evidence enough for them, that these books could not be considered Scripture. However, it is ironic that the Jewish rabbis who met in council to determine a canon, 60 years after they had rejected Jesus, are given carte-blanche authority to throw out Scriptures that specifically point to Jesus based on a passage in Romans that the Jews themselves themselves do not accept as Scripture. Protestants who say they accept Jesus follow a Jewish decision 60 years after they rejected Jesus and give the Jesus rejecting Jews the authority to determine their canon, while ignoring their similar rejection of the New Testament. This, despite Jesus himself giving the authority to the Church when he said he who hears you hears me (Lk 10:16), not ‘He who hears Jews who reject me in Council have the authority to set the canon over my disciples, hears me”. He said ‘Whatsoever you bind (not the Jews who reject me) on earth shall be bound in heaven’ (Mt. 16:19, 18:18). Whatsoever, would thus include the canon of the Old Testament. In addition, in any Council, whether local, regional, or Ecumenical, the Church has always included the Deuterocanonical books, and always the same Deuterocanonical books.

A good summary of the Septuagint and the Council of Jamnia is summed up by Bob Stanley in his piece on the issue:

The Greek Septuagint up until the time of Jamnia, had all of the seven disputed books.

The Greek speaking Jews accepted and used the Septuagint for about two hundred years until Christianity came along.

Jewish writers removed the seven books as a result of the Council of Jamnia. That Council was a Jewish Council, not a Christian Council.

Protestant fundamentalists point to this Council as the source of the 'correct' canon of the Old Testament.

Protestant fundamentalists accept the ruling of a Jewish Council that was specifically called to counter Christianity, and at the same time reject the ruling of the Christian (Catholic) Council of Carthage in 397 A.D. which finalized the canon of the Old Testament and included all 46 books.

This section is taken from this article:

This appeal to Romans 3 as an excuse to throw out seven books of the Bible makes no sense whatsoever. For a longer study of this specific question on the Jews defining the content of Old Testament Scripture for Christians, go to my study here: and click on "But didn't the Jews determine the canon?"

2. They were not received as inspired Scripture by the churches during the first four centuries after Christ.
First, the early Church did not operate on the presumption of Sola Scriptura, which was that the Bible was the sole infallible authority, as David Cloud indicates. As the Church operated on the assumption that the Church itself and tradition were of equal authority to Scripture (2 Thes. 2:15, Mt. 16:18-19, 18:18, Lk. 10:16), there was no need to set a canon in the first few centuries. If Sola Scriptura were the operating assumption that the Fathers worked from, then there would have been a first century canon. In fact if Sola Scriptura were an operating assumption of the Jews (those given the oracles of God, Rom. 3:1-2), then the Old Testament canon would have been set long prior to the time of Jesus.

Next, Mr. Cloud is mistaken in the fact that the Church did accept the Deuterocanonical books. If we look at the Fathers we see this in abundance. For example, J.N.D. Kelley, the well-known Protestant historian, and author of the book, Early Christian Doctrines, admits in that book that the Deuterocanonicals were commonly accepted by the early church as scripture (pages 53-55).:

It should be observed that the Old Testament thus admitted as authoritative in the Church was somewhat bulkier and more comprehensive than the [Protestant Old Testament] . . . It always included, though with varying degrees of recognition, the so-called Apocrypha or deutero-canonical books. The reason for this is that the Old Testament which passed in the first instance into the hands of Christians was the Greek translation known as the Septuagint. .. . most of the Scriptural quotations found in the New Testament are based upon it rather than the Hebrew.. . . In the first two centuries. . . the Church seems to have accept all, or most of, these additional books as inspired and to have treated them without question as Scripture. Quotations from Wisdom, for example, occur in 1 Clement and Barnabas. . . Polycarp cites Tobit, and the Didache [cites] Ecclesiasticus. Irenaeus refers to Wisdom, the History of Susannah, Bel and the Dragon [i.e., the Deuterocanonical portions of Daniel], and Baruch. The use made of the Apocrypha by Tertullian, Hippolytus, Cyprian and Clement of Alexandria is too frequent for detailed references to be necessary".
Thus, the idea that the Church did not accept these books in the early centuries is absolutely bogus. In fact, even if some Church Fathers who may at some times seem to indicate doubt as to their Scriptural status (beginning with Origen, Jerome, etc.), these very same Fathers referred to these books as Scripture. In fact, I document in the following piece that the Fathers who are often referred to as rejecters of the Deuterocanonicals, in fact called these books Scripture, went to them for substantiation of doctrine, and treated them just as the rest of Scripture. I can say after a detailed study of the individual Fathers who are alleged to deny those books’ inspiration, that they unanimously considered these books as Scripture. For a detailed study of this issue and the individual Fathers, please go here:
3. They were not written in the Hebrew language, which was alone used by the inspired historians and prophets of the O.T.
So what that the Deuterocanonicals were not written in the Hebrew language!!! There is nothing in the Old Testament written in Hebrew saying that ‘in order for this to be Scripture, this must be written in Hebrew’. In fact, if Mr. Cloud is giving us this criteria, where in the Bible is this stated? Absolutely nowhere, as if he is honest, he will have to admit this. If he puts this as a criteria, then why does he accept the New Testament, because not one iota of it was written in Hebrew? Well, Matthew was originally written in Hebrew, but that is the only one known to ever have been written in Hebrew. In fact though, we have no Hebrew manuscripts copies of even these manuscripts of Matthew. Thus, all 27 books of the New Testament would be eliminated using this criteria.

With that as a given, in fact we have evidence from the Qumran, with scrolls discovered recently, that some of the Deuterocanonical books do in fact have Hebrew manuscripts. Thus, Mr. Cloud's criteria would actually admit some of the Deuterocanonicals books into the canon. Also in reference to the Protocanonical books, Ezra chapters 2-7, and Daniel chapters 2-7, do not have any Hebrew at all. Will Mr. Cloud throw out those parts of Ezra and Daniel that do not have Hebrew as uninspired? I seriously doubt it.

4. They do not claim to be the inspired Word of God. Unlike the inspired Scriptures, the Apocryphal books contain no statements such as "thus saith the Lord" or "these are the words of God."
This criteria that they are only Scripture if it specifically says “This is the inspired Word of God” would eliminate 26 of the 27 New Testament books, and many of the Protocanonical books. The gospels or the epistles do not call themselves inspired Scripture. 2 Tim. 3:16 does not claim itself to be inspired. It says Scriptures are inspired, but does not call itself Scripture. 2 Pet. 3 says Paul's writings are inspired, but makes no identification of any books, (Could he have referred to Paul's letters that we don't have in 1 Cor. 5:9 or the letter from Laodicea, (Colossians 4:16) which we don't know) and certainly doesn't claim itself to be Scripture. The only book in the New Testament that claims to be inspired in and of itself is the book of Revelation. Because of the very different type of book this is, its own canonicity was very much in question until the Church decided that it was Scripture in the late 4th century. Thus, 26 out of 27 books in the New Testament don't claim themselves to be Scripture, so even if this was true, if you throw out the Deuterocanonicals on that basis, you would only have the Book of Revelation, whose very canonicity was in doubt for centuries.

There are Deuterocanonical books that claim to be inspired. In fact in the book of Sirach we see a claim to be inspired in the same way that Moses is (Sir. 24:22-34). In Sirach 24 we see parallels to Proverbs 8 with teaching on Wisdom. The Creator gives a commandment (Sir. 24:8, thus equivalent to 'thus saith the Lord') All who labor for instruction are told to read it in the same manner that one reads Moses (Sir 24:22-34, esp. v. 34). Also, an angel in Tobit tells him to write the book that we have as Tobit, Tob. 6:12-22. We have a divine confirmation of this book that is not confirmed in 26 out of 27 New Testament books. So Mr. Cloud’s theory that no Deuterocanonical books claim to be inspired is not only incorrect, but would eliminate most New Testament books and many Protocanonical books. So thus, the claim of its own inspiration is not determinative of what is Scripture. After all, the Book of Mormon claims to be inspired.

5. They contain teachings contrary to the biblical books. II Maccabees teaches praying to the dead and making offerings to atone for the sins of the dead. Consider this quote from II Maccabees 12:43-45: "He also took up a collection ... and sent it to Jerusalem to provide for a sin offering. ... For if he were not expecting that those who had fallen asleep would arise again, it would have been superfluous and foolish to pray for the dead ... Therefore he made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin." The Bible, though, says there is only one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus (1 Ti. 2:5-6). Also Heb. 10:10-14 says believers have been perfected forever through Christ's one sacrifice. Thus, the dead in Christ need no human, earthly prayers or offerings. At death the lost go immediately to a place of torment; thus there is no purpose in praying for them (Lk. 16:22-23). II Maccabees also contains the heresy that deceased saints are interceding in heaven for those on earth (15:11-14). The Bible teaches that it is the Lord Jesus Christ, our great High Priest, who is interceding for us in Heaven--not deceased saints (Heb. 4:14-16; 8:1-2; 1 Jn. 2:1-2).
It is agreed that 2 Macc. 12 is a unique Scriptural passage which says to offer sacrifice for the dead. In fact, this passage, though Christianity accepted this as Scripture for 1500 years was pointed out to Luther, who was operating on the newly created Sola Scriptura principle. This passage shows Scripture explicitly teaching purgatory. Luther didn't like this passage and decided to throw this passage out of the Bible. AC Sundberg, a Lutheran himself documents this in the book, The Old Testament canon of the Early Church, Harvard Divinity School. He thus takes away from Scripture, condemned in Revelation 22:18. However, using that criteria, if we throw out Luke and Matthew we would have no direct explicit indication that there was to be a virgin birth in Scripture. Using Luther and Cloud’s criteria, why can’t I throw out Luke and Matthew and call the virgin birth ‘unbiblical’?

1 Tim. 2:5-6 is totally irrelevant to whether 2 Maccabees is inspired or not. When seen in the light of New Testament revelation, where 2nd Maccabees 12 speaks of making atonement for the dead, it is clear that it does not do away with Jesus as mediator, but is the application of what he did on the cross to the final cleansing from all iniquity. Someone must do something to apply the fruits of Jesus’ death on the cross to one's soul. After all, 1 John 1:9 says that the blood of Jesus will cleanse us from all iniquity. Cloud’s idea that we are merely ‘covered’ with an imputed righteousness makes folly of 1 John 1:9, and Rev. 21:27. Also, if one must say the salvation prayer (Cloud’s man-made tradition) to appropriate that salvation, and confess with one’s mouth that Jesus is Lord, that is doing something. Even the criteria of ‘faith alone’ says one must have faith in order to appropriate salvation. On what grounds is confessing, and having faith, (which are indeed actions) etc. not do away with Jesus as mediator while the truly cleansing (not merely covering) of one from sin does do that?

The reference to Hebrews 10 to say that one’s salvation is set no matter what one does and the sacrifice needs no further application is a selective look at the passage of Heb. 10:10-14, where the context is speaking of the application of the sacrifice to those who are being sanctified, which is indeed an ongoing process. In fact, in the same chapter, Heb. 10:26 specifically says that if one willfully sins that sacrifice is no longer of any help to that person. This includes a severe punishment (in Hell) for those who have been sanctified by the blood of the covenant (which can only happen to those in God’s grace!!! Thus, just because one is sanctified as spoken of in Heb. 10:10, 14, Mr. Cloud’s guarantee of once saved always saved is directly refuted immediately after the passage he points us to. Thus, one can turn one’s back on that once and for all sacrifice and it will no longer be of avail for that person. Hebrews specifically warns people that one must persevere, to stay within his grace (Heb. 2:1-3; 3:1,5-6, 12-14, 16-19, 4:1-3, 11-14, 6:4-6, 9-12, 10:22-29, 35-38, 12:5-11, 12-17, 25-26). The selective citation of Heb. 10 to make a point which totally contradicts the rest of Hebrews is sort of self-defeating.

Besides that there are other passages in Scripture which speak specifically like things we do to help get sins cleansed. For example, 1 Pet. 4:8 says Above all hold unfailing your love for one another, since love covers a multitude of sins. Apparently love cleanses us from sins. If we walk in the light and confess our sins, we get cleansed from sin via his blood (1 Jn 1:7, 9). Thus, actions that we take get sins forgiven. That is exactly what 2 Macc. 12 does.

The deceased saints in heaven are more alive in Christ in heaven than when they were here on earth. Jesus says this about those who are in Christ, Mark 12:26-27:

26 And as touching the dead, that they rise: have ye not read in the book of Moses, how in the bush God spake unto him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? 27 He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err
Those who die in Christ are more alive than they were on earth. Mr. Cloud, declares Jesus, errs greatly in saying that the dead in Christ are not alive and aware of what is going on. They are more aware of what is going on and as the Church is only one Body, of course they intercede for those on earth who are in the same body, the Church. We have glimpses of this in Scripture (Rev. 5:8, 6:9-10 8:3-4). They are aware of what is going on in earth (Rev. 18:20). After all, Scripture says that we have come to the assembly of the first-born enrolled in heaven (Heb. 12:24). How can we come to them if they have nothing to do with us? Thus, 2nd Maccabees reflects very much the picture that New Testament Scriptures give us on this matter.
6. In quality and style, the Apocryphal books are not on the level of Bible writings. Even a hurried reading of the Apocryphal books reveals the fact that here we are touching the uninspired writings of men apart from divine inspiration. These writings are not "God breathed," as 2 Tim. 3:16 says all Scripture is. There is not in the Apocryphal books the supernatural depth and breadth of thought, the rich complexity yet simplicity of language, which goes beyond mere writings of men.
This is pure subjectivism. This is the ‘burning in the bosom’ Mormon criteria. If one just reads it, one just gets the feeling that this is Scripture. Of course, I would love to see this criteria applied to the letter of Philemon. If Mr. Cloud was independently reading the book of Philemon, I would love to see if he really got the chills and say ‘O, this feels like Scripture.’ In fact Mr. Cloud really only knows that Philemon is inspired is because he is told it is so from his Fundamentalist tradition, which borrows from the Protestant tradition which wholesale took from the Catholic Church which declared Philemon to be canonical. When reading the genealogies of Genesis, the dietary laws, statistics and numbers in Numbers and Chronicles, does one just ‘know’ that this is Divine Scripture? When Ecclesiastes tell us that ‘all is vanity’ (Eccl. 1:2, 14, 12:9, etc.) does that inspire us? If Ecclesiastes was a Deuterocanonical book, I can tell you that Mr. Cloud would quote that passage and use this criteria he uses as proof that it is not Scripture. Does 2nd and 3rd John just ‘grab’ Mr. Cloud as obviously divine Scripture?

There is tremendous breadth of thought in such books as Wisdom and Sirach. The writings of Sirach are very close to the book of Proverbs. The types of literature found in the Deuterocanonical books have counterparts within the Protocanonical and/or New Testament books. There is a tremendous variety of types of literature both within the Deuterocanonical and Protocanonical books. Some book are just a plain, inspired reporting of facts, and some books are different types of literature meant to convey God’s truth in other ways to mankind, just as in the Protocanonical books.

7. The Apocryphal writings are not quoted by the Lord Jesus or the Apostles, while every part of the O.T. Scriptures are quoted. This is a very important point. Though some claim to find allusions to the Apocrypha in certain N.T. passages (Mt. 7:12; 27:43-54; Rom. 9:21; Eph. 6:13-17; Heb. 1:3; Jam. 1:6,19; 5:6), this is not a proven fact. While it is possible that the N.T. writers were familiar with the Apocrypha, it is plain that they did not directly quote from these books. The supposed allusions to the Apocrypha in the N.T. could just as easily be allusions to other O.T. histories or to facts given directly by revelation. We must remember that the N.T. Scriptures are not the product of man, but of God.
Again Mr. Cloud is plainly misreporting facts. Almost one-third of the books of the Old Testament that he accepts are never referred to or even alluded to at all. Neither Ecclesiastes, Esther, Song of Songs, Obadiah, Zephaniah, Judges, 1 Chronicles, 2 Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Lamentations, nor Nahum are quoted by Jesus or the apostles. This ‘very important point’ by Mr. Cloud would eliminate all these books and reduce the number of Protocanonical books to approximately 27 books.

The fact is that Jesus and the apostles unquestionably use the Deuterocanonicals, even if the authors do not explicitly say, “It is written”. and apply it to the Deuterocanonicals. In fact, on many occasions in Scripture likewise there are allusions to Protocanonical books without the specific phrase ‘It is written’ preceding that. Now a cogent example of a reference to a Deuterocanonical book is that found in Hebrew 11:35:

Women received their dead raised to life again: and others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection .
This is as close to a citation as one could get, as it is obvious that Hebrews 11:35, the second part, is speaking of the brothers in the Maccabees who died in the hope to rise again to a better life. See 2nd Maccabees 7. No Protocanonical book has those events, where someone is tortured, and has the hope of the resurrection of life. Also, elsewhere there is a borrowing from Deuterocanonicals in the New Testament, even if there are not formal citations which are preceded by “It is written.” Paul for example, in Romans 1:19-32, clearly borrows from Wisdom 13. Wisdom 2:18-20 is clearly referred to in Matthew 27:43 as well. Also, James 1:19 clearly alludes to Sirach 5:11:
James 1:19 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.

Sirach 5:11: Be quick to hear, and be deliberate in answering.

There are other references as well. Even if there are not quotations per se, the ideas are intertwined and a borrowing from the Deuterocanonicals is clear. An url that goes into even more allusions and borrowing from the Deuterocanonicals is here (including prophecies): Another url that gives plenty of examples of the deliberate use of the Deuterocanonicals are here (at the bottom of the url) Thus, the criteria that Mr. Cloud uses to eliminate these books not only do not eliminate these books as he ignores the clear use of these passages by Jesus and the apostles, but would eliminate 12 of the Protocanonical books that he accepts.
8. Some Apocryphal books, though written as history, are actually fiction. This is a form of deception not found in divinely inspired books of the Bible. "Ostensibly historical but actually quite imaginative are the books of Tobit, Judith, Susanna, and Bel and the Dragon, which may be called moralistic novels" (Oxford Annotated Apocrypha, p. xi). Noteworthy examples of ancient fiction they might be, but such books have absolutely no place among the seven-times purified Word of God (Ps. 12:6-7).
On reason number six, Mr. Cloud told us one of the great things of the Bible is that it had great depth, and the type of literature was extensive in that breadth. He said that the Bible had “supernatural depth and breadth of thought,”. If the Bible has great breadth of thought, then clearly if there is any fiction within the Bible that teaches truth, that would reflect this breadth of thought. Now Cloud is trying to limit its breadth. This is contradictory to what he says about this breadth of thought. Should we eliminate the book of Revelation which is a unique book, which is clearly just a series of visions? That book has produced tons of bad exegesis, many of which come from David Cloud's type of fundamentalist thought, with Gorbachev here, Clinton there, being candidates for the anti-Christ. There is no other book in the Bible besides Revelation which consists only of that specific type of genre. Should Revelation be eliminated on that basis?

Mark Shea points out what the authors of Tobit and Judith are getting at in his excellent article on the Deuterocanonicals here:

The Church teaches that to have an authentic understanding of Scripture we must have in mind what the author was actually trying to assert, the way he was trying to assert it, and what is incidental to that assertion.

For example, when Jesus begins the parable of the Prodigal Son saying, "There was once a man with two sons," He is not shown to be a bad historian when it is proven that the man with two sons He describes didn't actually exist. So too, when the prophet Nathan tells King David the story of the "rich man" who stole a "poor man's" ewe lamb and slaughtered it, Nathan is not a liar if he cannot produce the carcass or identify the two men in his story. In strict fact, there was no ewe lamb, no theft, and no rich and poor men. These details were used in a metaphor to rebuke King David for his adultery with Bathsheba. We know what Nathan was trying to say and the way he was trying to say it. Likewise, when the Gospels say the women came to the tomb at sunrise, there is no scientific error here. This is not the assertion of the Ptolemiac theory that the sun revolves around the earth. These and other examples which could be given are not "errors" because they're not truth claims about astronomy or historical events.

Similarly, both Judith and Tobit have a number of historical and geographical errors, not because they're presenting bad history and erroneous geography, but because they're first-rate pious stories that don't pretend to be remotely interested with teaching history or geography, any more than the Resurrection narratives in the Gospels are interested in astronomy. Indeed, the author of Tobit goes out of his way to make clear that his hero is fictional. He makes Tobit the uncle of Ahiqar, a figure in ancient Semitic folklore like "Jack the Giant Killer" or "Aladdin." Just as one wouldn't wave a medieval history textbook around and complain about a tale that begins "once upon a time when King Arthur ruled the land," so Catholics are not reading Tobit and Judith to get a history lesson.

In fact all of Jesus parables indeed are fictitious stories meant to convey Scriptural truths. To say that the inspired Scriptures have no place for these types of stories would do away with Jesus' parables. That type of book that Judith is, reflects in some way the teaching style of Jesus himsef.
9. The Apocryphal books were rejected from the canon of Scripture by the early church leaders. "It is a significant fact that the best of the early Fathers adopted the Hebrew canon as giving the authoritative Scriptures of the O.T." (Analytical, p. 1083).
Cloud’s source, Analytical, p. 1083, whatever that is, is not very analytical. What does he mean ‘best’ of the Church Fathers? Those Fathers that had contact with the apostles such as Clement, Barnabas, and Polycarp clearly used the Deuterocanonicals as Scripture. Those immediately following them also used the Deuterocanonicals as Scripture to teach doctrine. Many Fathers don’t even question their Scriptural status. In fact, what ‘Analytical’ considers the ‘best of the Fathers’ (I guess they are best because ‘Analytical’ thinks that they don’t consider the Deuterocanonicals as Scripture) still referred to these books as Scripture. True, St. Jerome, Athanasius, Cyril of Jerusalem and others, when giving the list of canon would leave the Deuterocanonicals out of their list. However, the term canon when they used it, did not necessarily mean ‘these are the only books of the Bible’. In fact, in some cases the term canon only meant those books that are read in the Liturgy. These books in some areas would not be read in the Liturgy, but being left off the list did not necessarily indicate that these books were not Scripture. Indeed the very ‘best’ Fathers that ‘Analytical’ tries to say rejected the Deuterocanonicals unanimously called these books Scripture, used them to teach doctrine, and treated them on the same level as other books of Scripture. This includes St. Jerome and every single one that ‘Analytical’, or anybody else will give us. Indeed, I go over this in my analysis of the Deuterocanonicals at this location, I document this for each of ‘Analytical’s’ best Fathers.

In fact I have a challenge for Mr. Cloud, 'Analytical' or any Protestant who affirms that some Church Fathers denied the inspiration of the Deuterocanonical books. If any Church Father truly denied these books, I want them to get me a Church Father who does all of the following:

1) Say that books are not inspired.

2) Refuse to call these books Scripture.

3) Refuse to go to these books in support for doctrine.

4) Say that these books are in error using any of the criteria that Mr. Cloud uses.

None of these 'best' Fathers that I have seen used by Protestants to say that they deny these book's inspiration in fact do any of the above, let alone all four of them. Please give me citations for that. That would be easy to find if they truly did not consider these books as Scripture. In fact they go to these books as Scripture, call them Scripture, and teach doctrine based on these books.

10. The book of Tobit contains many false things. First, there is the account of a supposed high and good angel of God who lies and teaches the use of magic! In Tobit 5:4 we are told that the angel's name is "Raphael," but later he lies to Tobit, claiming to be "Azarias the son of the great Ananias, one of your relatives" (Tobit 5:12). This angel professes to be "one of the seven holy angels who present the prayers of the saints and enter into the presence of the glory of the Holy One" (Tobit 12:15). Yet he not only lies about his name, but teaches magic. "Then the angel said to him, `Cut open the fish and take the heart and liver and gall and put them away safely.' ... Then the young man said to the angel, `Brother Azarias, of what use is the liver and heart and gall of the fish?' He replied, `As for the heart and the liver, if a demon or evil spirit gives trouble to any one, you make a smoke from these before the man or woman, and that person will never be troubled again. And as for the gall, anoint with it a man who has white films in his eyes, and he will be cured'" (Tobit 6:4,6-8). The Bible clearly condemns magical practices such as this (consider De. 18:10-12; Le. 19:26,31; Je. 27:9; Mal. 3:5).
So Mr. Cloud's first problem is that the angel in Tobit is apparently a liar because he doesn't tell them right away that he is an angel. Well then, many angels in the Bible are liars because many of them appear disguised as men. In Genesis 18, three angels come as men and converse with Abraham as men. In Genesis 19, in Sodom, angels appear as men, and Lot seeks to protect them. If he knew that they were angels, he would not need to protect them. Thus, using Mr. Cloud's criteria, did the angels lie and deceive Lot by just appearing as men (Gen. 19:1-18)? Apparently, Lot was so deceived by the angels into thinking that they were men that he was willing to sacrifice his own daughter's virginity in protection of what he thought were men (v. 18)!!! Isn't that more deceitful than an angel just giving them a name? So, how in the world does the angel’s action in Tobit cause that book to be uninspired but not do the same thing to Genesis??

The next problem that Mr. Cloud apparently has I think is that maybe he has watched 'Touched by an Angel' too much. In 'Touched by an Angel' the angels tell the people that they are helping that they are indeed angels. In fact, here the angels did reveal who they were in Tobit. Nonetheless the fact that angels do not always tell them that they are angels, especially right away, is very consistent with the Bible. In fact, Heb. 13:2 says:

Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
Thus, according to Scripture angels appear in many cases and don’t reveal themselves at all. Otherwise, how could people entertain angels unaware? We know that in Genesis 18, 19, 31, and Judges for example, the angels gave the impression to whoever they encountered that they were men and did not dissuade them from that idea at first. An angel in Judges for example responds affirmatively to the question of whether he is a man (Judges 13:11) just as Tobit's angel does for what is supposed to make that book uninspired. Is the angel in Judges a "liar" and thus render Judges uninspired? Mr. Cloud’s idea apparently that as soon as the angel appears to whoever he encounters, he is supposed to do a ‘Touched by an angel’ scene maybe having their face lighting up? However, Scripture says that many will entertain angels unaware. If they are unaware that they have entertained angels, it is obvious that some angels will appear as man, as indicated in Genesis, Judges, and Tobit without a ‘Touched by an Angel’ scene declaration that the angel is an angel that Mr. Cloud is looking for.

Now, in reference to the idea that what the angel is doing is telling Tobit to perform magic in contradiction to Deuteronomy 18. If the Angel was conjuring up some spirits to cast out the demon Mr. Cloud may have a point. The quotation of Deuteronomy says that one is not supposed to use a charmer, practice divination, or encourage sorcery (Dt. 18:10-12). That is absolutely irrelevant to Tobit, as the angel does no such conjuring up of Spirits. In fact, apparently Mr. Cloud is doing the same thing as the Pharisees did against Jesus when Jesus lambasted them, when he said, Mt. 12:24-28:

24 But when the Pharisees heard it they said, "It is only by Be-el'zebul, the prince of demons, that this man casts out demons." 25 Knowing their thoughts, he said to them, "Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and no city or house divided against itself will stand; 26 and if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself; how then will his kingdom stand? 27 And if I cast out demons by Be-el'zebul, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges. 28 But if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.
It is obvious that only the Spirit of God can cast out demons, not any other Spirit. Thus, when we read that the demon is cast out in Tobit, it is through the power of God’s Spirit. The angel as a messenger of God would not appeal to a demon to cast out a demon. Nor does he hint at it. The Pharisaical argument that Mr. Cloud is using does not work either in the New or Old Testament and is specifically condemned by Jesus .

Now, in reference to the means used. How did Jesus’ disciples cast out demons? Let us compare this supposed sorcery in Tobit to the Book of Mark, where after Jesus commission to preach the gospel, they encountered some demons. Mark 6:13:

And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed them.
We see here in Mark, the apostles casting out demons (or devils) and healing people apparently with the use of oil, very close to the book of Tobit’s use of gall. God uses matter, through the apostles to cast out the devils. Oil is also used in James 5:13-14, where the anointing of the sick with oil is used to heal people. In the anti-sacramental mindset of Mr. Cloud, he attacks the use of matter to heal people despite this being very biblical. Now, Tobit 6 uses gall, matter, just as the apostles use oil, matter, to cast out demons. Were they magical? Mark 6 and James 5 uses oil to heal people, including casting out demons. In 2nd Kings 5:14, Naaman the Syrian is healed of leprosy when the prophet Elisha tells him to get in the water (5:8-13). Jesus uses clay to rub on the eyes of a blind man, and the blind man had to go to the water of Siloam to wash in order for the blind man to get healed (Jn 9:1-11) Thus, just as in Tobit 6, not only was matter applied to the person, but the person had to go do something to get the miracle done. Were Jesus, the apostles and Elisha using magic? Not quite. Thus, what the angel did in Tobit was very consistent with what the Jesus, the apostles, and Elisha did. Will Mr. Cloud call for 2nd Kings, Mark, and John to get tossed out of the Bible? He will do that if he is consistent.
Second, the false doctrine of salvation through works is taught in the book of Tobit. "For almsgiving delivers from death, and it will purge away every sin" (Tobit 12:9). "So now, my children, consider what almsgiving accomplishes and how righteousness delivers" (Tobit 14:11). These false teachings must be contrasted with Lev. 17:11, which says "it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul," and with Tit. 3:5 which says, "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Spirit."

In reference to the Tobit 12:9 passage which speaks of sins being atoned for by almsgiving we have passages in both the Old and New Testament which reflect a similar teaching.

Well Jesus says:

Luke 11: 39 And the Lord said to him, "Now you Pharisees cleanse the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside you are full of extortion and wickedness. 40 You fools! Did not he who made the outside make the inside also? 41 But give for alms those things which are within; and behold, everything is clean for you.
Well, Jesus says the same thing as Tobit!!!! You can’t clean it from the outside. How do you clean it from the inside? Oh. Give alms and you get cleansed!!! Tobit 12:9 should be a good cross reference for the Luke passage in reference to the almsgiving and cleansing from sin. That is Jesus' very words in Luke. Tobit 12:9 and Luke 11:41 are a good match. But Mr. Cloud decided to throw Tobit out of his bible because it is ‘unbiblical’! To be consistent he must throw out Luke as well.

This is also found even in the Old Testament as well. The fact that good actions can atone for sins is reflected in Proverbs as well:

Proverbs 16:6: By loyalty and faithfulness iniquity is atoned for, and by the fear of the LORD a man avoids evil.
Also, some more books in the Bible would have to be cast aside according to Mr. Cloud’s own criteria about works not being any of the grounds of salvation.
1 Pet. 4:8: And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.

Rev. 22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.

James 2:24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.

Roman 2:6 Who will render to every man according to his deeds: 7 To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life... But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile...13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.

Mt. 25: 34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:

Jn 5:28-29 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, 29 And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.

I guess we also should throw out 1 Peter, James, Matthew, Romans, 1 Peter, Revelation, and John (and many, many more similar books that have similar passages) from the Bible? After all, they teach Faith alone is false, and that works are essential for salvation. Mr. Cloud can’t have that.
Third, Tobit taught that help is only to be given to the deserving. "Place your bread on the grave of the righteous, but give none to sinners" (Tobit 4:17). Contrariwise, in Ex. 23:4-5 God taught even in O.T. times that His people were to do good to their enemies and not only toward the righteous.
Again, Mr. Cloud is selective both in his look at Tobit and in the Old Testament. The previous verse, Tobit 4:6 says this:
6 Give of your bread to the hungry, and of your clothing to the naked. Give all your surplus to charity, and do not let your eye begrudge the gift when you made it.
This passage is very consistent with the Bible. When Tobit speaks of giving bread to the hungry and clothing the naked, that is very consistently reflective of the teaching of Jesus in Matthew 25:31-46, James 2:14-17, and many other places in the Bible.

Now, when speaking of what to do for sinners and enemies, the comparison that Mr. Cloud uses, in order to prove Tobit’s non-inspiration is selective at best. I am sure Mr. Cloud knows that his passage in Exodus 23 is not all that the Old Testament speaks of in how to treat sinners and enemies. Tobit just says don’t give food to the unrighteous. If we look at how David expresses himself in how to treat his enemies he writes:

Psalm 139:21-22 Do not I hate them, O LORD, that hate thee? and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee? 22 I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them mine enemies.

Psalm 119:58: I look at the faithless with disgust, because they do not keep thy commands.

Psalm 137:8 -9 O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed; happy shall he be, that rewardeth thee as thou hast served us. 9 Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.

Psalm 140:9 As for the head of those that compass me about, let the mischief of their own lips cover them. 10 Let burning coals fall upon them: let them be cast into the fire; into deep pits, that they rise not up again. 11 Let not an evil speaker be established in the earth: evil shall hunt the violent man to overthrow him. 12 I know that the LORD will maintain the cause of the afflicted, and the right of the poor.

All Tobit said was don’t feed the unrighteous and Mr. Cloud was throwing Tobit out based on that. Now we see in the Psalms, David says not just ‘don’t feed them’, but that we are to hate them that hate God. He is praying for God to punish these people. This is inspired Scripture. He prays for evil to come upon them. Yet he wants God to maintain the cause of the afflicted, like Tobit. Doesn’t sound like David is in a mood to feed his enemies. He is disgusted with them. He even says that one is happy that kills innocent little children of the enemy. If he wants enemies killed, he surely is not in the mood to feed them.

God in the Old Testament through his prophet Samuel told Saul to not only not feed his enemies but to utterly kill all the Amalekites, men, women, children, and even their animals. Not only that but he even regretted making Saul King because he because he wasn’t efficient enough in killing them (1 Sam. 15)!!! Surely that is much more contrary to doing good to sinners, than just merely not feeding them. Thus, we should have 1 Samuel and the Psalms thrown out on much more grounds than the feeble example that Mr. Cloud throws out about Tobit telling us not to feed them.

11. The book of Judith contains the account of how a supposedly godly widow destroyed one of Nebuchadnezzar's generals through deceit and sexual offers. It is also important to note that Judith's counsel regarding resisting Nebuchadnezzar was contrary to that given by God's prophet Jeremiah (Jer. 38:1-4). God warned the Israelites to submit to Nebuchadnezzar rather than to resist, because the Babylonian captivity and destruction of Israel was a judgment from God upon the Jew's rebellion and idolatry.
OK. Let us compare the book of Esther to Judith. Mr. Cloud says that Judith tried to use her beauty to destroy Nebuchadnezzar through deceit. Well, did Esther use deceit and her sexuality? Esther the main character and the heroine of the book in fact does this as well. First, King Ahasuerus selected a queen by first in effect issuing a beauty contest (Esther 2:3-4). Esther joined the contest. Esther apparently became part of a harem (Est. 2:11-12), joining many others. She put on makeup (or spices and ointment, v. 12) to win the King over in a more than likely, sexually appealing way. Even though Queen, she was one of many maidens and concubines who ‘went into King Ahasuerus' (Est. 2:12-14). That is not something that Judith did (join a harem). Esther spent much time beautifying herself and having all types of perfumes and ointments. In addition, we also see that at Mordecai's behest, Esther explicitly did not tell the King that she was part of the race of the Jews (Est. 2:10, 19). Thus, the hero deceived the King and is commended. That is what Mr. Cloud recommends that Judith be excluded from the Bible for. Besides that, Judith nowhere consented to being part of a harem as did Esther. Does he call for Esther to be excluded from the canon?

In addition, the book of Esther (nowhere quoted in the New Testament) that Mr. Cloud holds never once mentions God. In fact, the only places where God is specifically mentioned or called upon in prayer and appealed to for help is in the Deuterocanonical portions of Esther (Esther 14-15, 10) that Mr. Cloud rejects. If there was a Deuterocanonical book that forgot to mention God, I am sure that Mr. Cloud would have used that as grounds of exclusion from the Bible.

Now, as to Judith acting in disobedience to Jeremiah, it was noted by Mr. Cloud himself, that Judith is not necessarily an historical account. Thus, this passage does not have Judith in rebellion against Jeremiah. This is clearly a parable, and is understood as a parable. Now King Nebuchadnezzar is seen as the ultimate in evil from the Jewish point of view. Judith defeats one of his generals, cutting his head off. Using her strength she cuts off the head of a person who personifies evil. She retains her purity. She is acting more like Isaiah in Isaiah 37, where the prophet told King Hezekiah to not give up against the King of Assyria. In fact, the Lord smote thousands of the Assyrians (Isa. 37:36). He didn't feed them as I guess Mr. Cloud expects. In other words, it is not automatic that the Jews automatically must give up. Different contexts can bring different types of responses wanted by God.

Thus, both accusations against the Book of Judith fall by the wayside. Either that or yet another Protocanonical book need to be excised from Mr. Cloud's Bible.


We can see that all of the arguments that Mr. Cloud used to exclude the Deuterocanonicals do not withstand scrutiny. We see that the early Church, including both Councils and Fathers accepted these books. The argument that the Jesus rejecting Jews have the authority to set the Old Testament canon does not withstand scrutiny. All of the attacks on the Deuterocanonical books can be similarly applied to Protocanonical and/or New Testament books. I do not attack the inspiration of any of the Protocanonical or New Testament books but have shown that if Mr. Cloud is consistent, the grounds that he uses to expunge the Deuterocanonicals from the canon, can also be used to expunge the Protocanonical and/or the New Testament books from the canon. The selective critique of some books of the Bible while ignoring similar types of writing in other books of the Bible just to say that the one set of books is not in the Bible is a faulty way to look at things. In fact, the Deuterocanonical books are inspired, and must truly be heeded by those who love God's Holy Word.
©2002, "Refuting an Attack on the Deuterocanonicals": A Response to 11 ‘reasons’ that the Deuterocanonicals Should be Thrown Out of the Matt1618. This text may be downloaded or printed out for private reading, but it may not be uploaded to another Internet site or published, electronically or otherwise, without express written permission from the author.

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