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The Lost Books of the Bible and the Forgotten Books of Eden (Meridian) [Paperback]

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Item Description...
Suppressed by the early Church fathers who compiled the Bible, these Apocrypal Books have for centuries been shrouded in silence. Now, for the first time in paperbound book, the reader can discover the hidden beauties of the Lost Books. To be found in this volume are the Apostles' Creed, the Psalms and Odes of Solomon, and other Apocrypal writings that have become part of our religious heritage. The story of Joseph and Potiphar's wife, of Adam and Eve, of the girlhood and betrothal of Mary, of the childhood of Jesus, are here in all warmth, intimacy, and humanity of their first telling. -

Item Specifications...

Pages   640
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.1" Width: 5.34" Height: 1.4"
Weight:   1.18 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Dec 1, 1974
Publisher   Penguin Group USA
Age  18
ISBN  0452009448  
EAN  9780452009448  

Availability  7 units.
Availability accurate as of Mar 21, 2018 02:37.
Usually ships within one to two business days from New Kensington, PA.
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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Bibles > Other   [1325  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Christian Living > General   [31520  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Criticism & Interpretation > New Testa   [0  similar products]

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
The rest of the story......  Nov 9, 2006
During my first 50 years on this earth, I often wondered if there wasn't more to the Bible than we were receiving. It always seemed odd that a group of men could decide what should and should not be in the Bible. These additional gospels, letters & stories seem to tie up some loose ends, at least for me. More of Jesus's childhood days are written about as well as a detailed history of Adam and Eve and their descendents and how the "family tree" ties all of the Old Testament together. One must, however, keep an open mind and realize that these stories, like the ones in the Bible, have been handed down from word of mouth throughout the centuries until a method of preserving them was perfected. This book is great for a Bible Study group and will open the eyes of those who have never been, up to now, able to hear this collection of great books before. I highly recommend this for anyone interested in the history of mankind.
What Might Have Been: Apocrypha & Pseudepigrapha  Apr 11, 2006
A decent collection of books which, for whatever reason, were excluded by the early Church (Catholic) councils from what became the Old Testament and New Testament. Initially published in 1926, each one of the "Lost Books" includes a brief introduction giving background and history. Like the editors of this two-part volume, I do not feel it is necessary to share my opinion of the historicity of these works, each reader can decide for him or herself what is shadow and what is reality, and consider the debate which at one time engulfed some of these books.

This volume is divided into two sections. The first is called "Lost Books of the Bible", and includes works which deal with Jesus & company, and may at one time have been considered part of the New Testament Gospel. Includes are the following 26 "lost" books:

Mary, Protevangelion, I. Infancy, II. Infancy, Christ and Abgarus, Nicodemus, The Apostles' Creed, Laodiceans, Paul and Senica, Paul and Thecla, I. Clement, II. Clement, Barnabus, Ephesians, Magnesians, Trallians, Romans, Philadelphians, Smyrnaeans, Polycarp, Philippians, I. Hermas-Visions, II. Herman-Commands, III. Hermas-Similitudes, Letters of Herod and Pilate, The Last Gospel of Peter

Part the Second is titled "The Forgotten Books of Eden", and includes works which are suited to the Hebrew Bible, or Old Testament. They too were excluded by Jewish (and some Christian) councils due to doubts about their age and origins. Includes are the following 20 books:

The First Book of Adam and Eve, The Second Book of Adam and Eve, The Secrets of Enoch, The Psalms of Solomon, The Odes of Solomon, The Letter of Aristeas, The Fourth Book of Maccabees, The Story of Ahikar, The Testament of Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Joseph, Benjamin

This affordable book offers a thought provoking read for those with a general interest "outside of the box". While the translations are somewhat dated, they are not difficult to understand.
Nothing to fear!  Nov 29, 2005
It amazes me how many negative comments there are. Granted that this book isn't the best book out there for the discarded biblical books, but the content certainly isn't worth ridiculing to the extent that some of these other fine this site customers have seen fit to do. One woman even went on an anti-catholic tangent. As a Catholic, I'm a little confused as to how the Book of James "sounded too Catholic" and how that was a bad thing. LOL

These books may very well be divinely inspired. We simply don't know. Some are suspect, such as the Book of Nicodemus, but many were removed for POLITICAL reasons, not religious ones. We are at a loss for not having the gnostic books: Apocalypse of Peter and Mary Magdalene. The Infancy of Jesus is not only relevant but extremely believable... and understood why politics would see fit to tuck it under the rug!

Jesus had warned not to add to or take away from the Word. It's important that we read these texts that were taken away and evaluate it with our spirits. I wonder how many texts are lost to us. I suppose, if there are any lost texts, God will see fit to have them uncovered when we are ready for them.
Not Lost But Left Out  Dec 13, 2004
These "books" were left out of the cannon for a reason; they are not actual, true books of the Bible. One example of how they conflict with scripture is the Book of Mary in "The Lost Books." The Book of Mary tells us that she was raised up special by her parents after being told she would be the mother of the Messiah. Historical fact tells us that her parents were not foretold that she would be the mother of the Messiah. In the Book of Luke in the real Bible, when the Angel Gabriel appears to announce to Mary that she is going to conceive by the power of the Holy Spirit it is obvious that she is very surprised and not expecting such a visitation or such an announcement. She even asks the angel how this can be so when she "knows not a man." This makes it very obvious that she did not have prior knowledge of being chosen by God to bear His Son. The books in "The Lost Books" are similar to the ideas and false inspirations behind the Divinci Code. Anyone can write anything contradictory, blasphemous, and untrue about biblical fact and history, but it doesn't change that fact and history, nor make it less true. These books were never "lost," they were left out of the cannon on purpose, because they did not qualify as the Word of God because they are not true books that were inspired by God through the person of the Holy Spirit as God's Word is. Man-inspired text and God-inspired text...huge world of difference.
To Go A Step Beyond  Sep 23, 2004
This book is a good choice to begin to learn about the amazing history of the Christian Church.

Especially Gnosticism and the early Christian Church, and especially the creation of the New Testament Bible. For a different is my review of books that build on these interests, especially the "lost" books of the New Testament Bible and the concepts of Gnosticism.

Nearly all knowledgeable Biblical scholars realize there have been a wide range of writings attributed to Jesus and his Apostles..... and that some of these were selected for compilation into the book that became known as the Bible.....and that some books have been removed from some versions of the Bible and others have been re-discovered in modern times.

The attention focused on Gnosticism by Dan Brown's DaVinci Code may be debatable, but the fact is that increased attention on academics tends to be predominately positive, so I welcome those with first-time or renewed interest. At least first-timers to Gnosticism are not pursuing the oh-so-popular legends of the Holy Grail, Bloodline of Christ, and Mary Magdalene.

This is great......I seldom quote other reviewers, but there is one reviewer of Pagels' books who confided that he had been a Jesuit candidate and had been required to study a wide range of texts but was never was told about the Nag Hamadi texts. He said:

"Now I know why. The Gospel of Thomas lays waste to the notion that Jesus was `the only begotten Son of God' and obviates the need for a formalized church when he says, `When your leaders tell you that God is in heaven, say rather, God is within you, and without you.' No wonder they suppressed this stuff! The Roman Catholic Church hasn't maintained itself as the oldest institution in the world by allowing individuals to have a clear channel to see the divinity within all of us: they need to put God in a bottle, label the bottle, put that bottle on an altar, build a church around that altar, put a sign over the door, and create rubricks and rituals to keep out the dis-believing riff-raff. Real `Us' versus `them' stuff, the polar opposite from `God is within You.' `My God is bigger than your God' the church(s)seem to say. And you can only get there through "my" door/denomination. But Jesus according to Thomas had it right: just keep it simple, and discover the indwelling Divinity `within you and without you.'"

Here are quickie reviews of what is being bought these days on the Gnostic Gospels and the lost books of the Bible in general:

The Lost Books of the Bible (0517277956) includes 26 apocryphal books from the first 400 years that were not included in the New Testament.

Marvin Meyers' The Secret Teachings of Jesus : Four Gnostic Gospels (0394744330 ) is a new translation without commentary of The Secret Book of James, The Gospel of Thomas, The Book of Thomas, and The Secret Book of John.

James M. Robinson's The Nag Hammadi Library in English : Revised Edition (0060669357) has been around 25 years now and is in 2nd edition. It has introductions to each of the 13 Nag Hammadi Codices and the Papyrus Berioinensis 8502.

The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English (0140278079) by Geza Vermes has selected works....a complete work is more difficult to achieve than the publisher's marketing concept indicates. His commentary generates strong reactions.

Elaine Pagels has 2 books (The Gnostic Gospels 0679724532 and Beyond Belief : The Secret Gospel of Thomas 0375501568) that have received considerable attention lately. For many, her work is controversial in that it is written for popular consumption and there is a strong modern interpretation. She does attempt to reinterpret ancient gender relationships in the light of modern feminist thinking. While this is a useful (and entertaining) aspect of college women's studies programs, it is not as unethical as some critics claim. As hard as they may try, all historians interpret the past in the context of the present. Obviously there is value in our attempts to re-interpret the past in the light of our own time.

If you want the full scholarly work it is W. Schneemelcher's 2 volume New Testament Apocrypha.

Also, to understand the Cathars......try Barbara Tuckman's Distant Mirror for an incredible historical commentary on how the Christian Church has handled other points of view

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