"Its primary source and first author was Jason of Cyrene, a man steeped in orthodox Judaism and skilled in the Hellenistic art of rhetorical narration."(1)
Its intent is to "instruct and to edify. It is perhaps less political than 1 Mc and places more emphasis upon the importance of the Temple and religious themes ... The book tends also to propagate the doctrines dear to the Pharisaic heart -- e.g., the resurrection of the just (7:9; 14:46); how consciously the author pursues this aim it is difficult to say."(2)
"The Roman Church places these works in her canon of the Scriptures, pointing to an ancient tradition as she does so. First to cite them in antiquity is Clement of Alexandria. He is followed by Hippolytus, Tertullian, Origen, Cyprian, Eusebius, Aphraates, Jerome, Augustine and Theodoret. The provincial councils of Hippo (393) and Carthage (397 and 419) recognized the sacred character of 1-2 Mc, and the general councils of Florence (1441), Trent (1546), and Vatican I (1870) declared them to be inspired by God."(3)What do non-Catholic sources say about the book of 2 Maccabees and the Apocrypha? 2 Maccabees was written at the same time as 1 Maccabees, first century, B.C. Also:
It "is not a sequel to 1 Maccabees, but a parallel account, treating only the victories of Judas Maccabaeus. It is generally thought to be more legendary than 1 Maccabees."(4)
The Apocryphal "writings were not officially declared to be divinely inspired, and included in the Catholic canon of Scripture as such, until 1546 at the Council of Trent. Previous to that time, these book [typographical error] were included in the Latin Vulgate and in the Greek version of the Old Testament, which is known as the Septuagint, but not officially decreed to be divinely inspired writings."(5)
Some other reasons why we must reject the Apocrypha as being part of canon are:
"So these things being done with relation to Nicanor and from that time the city being possessed by the Hebrews, I also will here make an end of my narration. Which if I have done well and as it becometh the history, it is what I desired: but if not so perfectly, it must be pardoned me."
For a person to believe in the doctrine of Purgatory, he/she would have to be totally misinformed about the Biblical doctrines of the Atonement, Redemption and even Salvation. Purgatory infers works for salvation, a soul-damning and devilish teaching. John Calvin's hero -- Augustine of Hippo said, "there are some who have departed this life, not so bad as to be deemed unworthy of mercy, nor so good as to be entitled to immediate happiness."(8) This statement infers works for salvation which is refuted by Eph. 2:8,9; Titus 3:5; Rom. 4:4-6 and 2 Tim. 1:9. Consequently, one can therefore conclude that Augustine was NOT a Christian, but instead a minister and servant of Satan, 2 Cor. 11:13-15!
The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. (Heb 1:3)
and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, (Rev 1:5)Jesus' blood shed on the cross is God’s means whereby we are purged from our sins, if we are. That happens at the point of repentance and faith in Jesus Christ:
Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, (Acts 3:19)
All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name. (Acts 10:43)There is an ongoing purging of sins, if you meet this requirement:
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. (1 John 1:7)Obviously, that is not a given because many fall away. Also, if you are not purged from your sins this side of the grave you'll never be! This is what will happen to such people:
The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of his kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. (Mat 13:41,42)In summary, the Apocryphal books, which include 2 Maccabees, are NOT from God, NOT inspired and MUST NOT be placed on the same level of authority as Holy Writ. For the Catholic Church to do just the opposite shows:
Prayer is good with fasting and alms: more than to lay up treasures of gold: for alms delivereth from death, and the same is that which purgeth away sins, and maketh to find mercy and life everlasting (Tobias 12:8,9).That passage proves the Apocrypha has a dangerous FALSE plan of salvation, which can never produce true salvation and deliverance from sin addictions. Its false gospel centers around alms for: deliverance from death, purging away sins and enabling one to find mercy and everlasting life, which is never the message of the Lord Jesus or his apostles!
Considering all the adverse effects of tradition, of which the Apocrypha is a result, one can see why Jesus refuted tradition and error as He did, Mt. 15:1-14; Mk. 7:6-13; Lk. 11:37-52; Mt. 16:6,12! Christians who desire to please God first and not man should unhesitatingly give logical reasons why the Apocrypha is not inspired as they "speak the truth in love" (Eph. 4:15) and contend for God's truth. Go by the Bible ALONE and reject the Apocrypha as being inspired for your own good!
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