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Introducing the Apocrypha: Message, Context, and Significance, 2nd ed.

ISBN: 9781493413089



This comprehensive, up-to-date introduction to the Old Testament apocryphal books summarizes their context, message, and significance. It is the most substantial introduction to the Apocrypha available and has become a standard authority on the topic. The new edition has been substantially revised and updated throughout to reflect the latest scholarship.

Resource Experts

Key Features

  • 2nd Edition provides helpful updates based on a wealth of recent research
  • Answers common questions about the Apocrypha
  • Helps readers understand the historical and theological value of the Apocrypha


  • Introduction: The Value of the Apocrypha
  • Historical Context: “The Yoke of the Gentiles”
  • Tobit: “Better Is Almsgiving with Justice”
  • Judith: “Hear Me Also, a Widow”
  • Greek Esther: “The Aid of the All-Seeing God and Savior”
  • Wisdom of Solomon: “The Righteous Live Forever”
  • Wisdom of Ben Sira: “In All Wisdom There Is the Doing of Torah”
  • Baruch: "Return with Tenfold Zeal to Seek God”
  • Letter of Jeremiah: “They Are Not Gods, So Do Not Fear Them”
  • Additions to Daniel: “Let Them Know That You Alone Are God”
  • 1 Maccabees: “The Family through Which Deliverance Was Given”
  • 2 Maccabees: “There Is Some Power of God about the Place”
  • 1 Esdras: “Leave to Us a Root and a Name”
  • Prayer of Manasseh: “The God of Those Who Repent”
  • Psalm 151: “He Made Me Shepherd of His Flock”
  • 3 Maccabees: “Blessed Be the Deliverer of Israel!”
  • 2 Esdras: “The Mighty One Has Not Forgotten”
  • 4 Maccabees: “Noble Is the Contest”

Praise for the Print Edition

David deSilva’s Introducing the Apocrypha remains the best book in the field. These important writings are placed in full context—historically, religiously, and literarily. Again and again deSilva shows how the books of the Apocrypha clarify important themes and traditions in the teaching of Jesus and in the literature of the early church. The revised edition is rich with insight and will serve well a new generation of students and scholars.

Craig A. Evans, John Bisagno Distinguished Professor of Christian Origins, Houston Baptist University

David deSilva offers a readable and competent introduction to these complex and neglected writings. This is the best one-volume introduction to the apocryphal, or deuterocanonical, books currently available in English.

Jeremy Corley, lecturer in Sacred Scripture, St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth, Ireland

It is still customary in some quarters of the church to assume that not much happened between the time the last portion of the Old Testament was written and the first events of the New Testament era began. This in fact is not true, and indeed anyone who reads David deSilva’s fine introduction to the Old Testament Apocrypha will realize that the period was a fertile one for Jewish writers dealing with issues ranging from theodicy to justice to wisdom. DeSilva does a fine job in fluid prose of introducing Christian readers to these books and helping them understand the context from which the Judaism of Jesus’ day (and his followers’) arose. Highly recommended.

Ben Witherington III, professor of New Testament, Asbury Theological Seminary

Product Details

In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

David A. deSilva

Dr. David A. deSilva, PhD, is the Trustees’ Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Greek at Ashland Theological Seminary in Ohio, where he’s taught since 1995.

He’s written over 20 books in the areas of New Testament and Second Temple Judaism, including Unholy Allegiances: Heeding Revelation's Warning (Hendrickson, 2013), The Jewish Teachers of Jesus, James, and Jude (Oxford, 2012),Seeing Things John’s Way: The Rhetoric of the Book of Revelation (WJKP, 2009), An Introduction to the New Testament: Contexts, Methods & Ministry Formation (IVP, 2004), Introducing the Apocrypha (Baker Academic, 2002), and Perseverance in Gratitude: A Socio-rhetorical Commentary on the Epistle “to the Hebrews” (Eerdmans, 2000). He’s also interested in spiritual formation, having written Sacramental Life: Spiritual Formation through the Book of Common Prayer (IVP, 2008) and Praying with John Wesley (Discipleship Resources, 2001).

He’s ordained in the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church, and serves as director of music and organist at Christ United Methodist Church in Ashland. He and his wife, Donna Jean, have three sons.

Sample Pages from the Print Edition


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