World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Non-canonical books referenced in the Bible


Non-canonical books referenced in the Bible

The non-canonical books in this article include Biblical apocrypha and Deuterocanonical books (which are accepted as part of the Biblical canon by most non-Protestant Christians), pseudepigrapha, writings from Hellenistic and other non-Biblical cultures, and lost works of known or unknown status. For the purposes of this article, referenced can mean direct quotations, paraphrases, or allusions, which in some cases are known only because they have been identified as such by ancient writers, or the citation of a work or author.


  • Hebrew Bible references 1
  • Deuterocanonical references 2
  • New Testament references 3
  • See also 4
  • Notes 5

Hebrew Bible references

The Hebrew Bible, also known as the Tanakh by Jews, and called the Old Testament by Christians, or the Protocanonical books.

  • The Book of Jasher (whose title fully translated means the Book of the Upright or the Book of the Just) is mentioned in Joshua 10:13 and 2 Samuel 1:18. From the context in the Book of Samuel it is implied that it was a collection of poetry. Several books have claimed to be this lost text, but are widely discounted as pseudepigrapha.
  • A "Book of Songs" is referenced at 1 Kings 8:12–13 (Septuagint).
  • The "Book of Shemaiah, and of Iddo the Seer" (also called Story of the Prophet Iddo or The Annals of the Prophet Iddo) is mentioned in the 2nd Book of Chronicles. ( 2 Chronicles 9:29, 2 Chronicles 12:15, 2 Chronicles 13:22). Iddo was a seer who lived during the reigns of Solomon, Rehoboam, and Abijah. His deeds were recorded in this book, which has been completely lost to history, save for its title. However, it is interesting to note that Zechariah was the son of Iddo, but this was likely not the same Iddo. ( Ezra 5:1, Zechariah 1:1)
  • The Manner of the Kingdom.[2]
    Referenced at 1 Samuel 10:25.
  • The Prophecy of Ahijah,[8] might be a reference to 1 Kings 14:2–18.
    Referenced at 2 Chronicles 9:29.
  • The Book of Jehu,[10] could be a reference to 1 Kings 16:1–7.
    Referenced at 2 Chronicles 20:34.
  • The Acts of Uziah. Also called The Book by the prophet Isaiah. Perhaps the same as the Book of Isaiah.[12]
    Referenced at 2 Chronicles 26:22.
  • The Acts of the Kings of Israel. Also called The Acts and Prayers of Manasseh.[14] May be identical to The Book of the Kings of Israel, above.
    Referenced at 2 Chronicles 33:18.
  • The Chronicles of King Ahasuerus.[16]
    Referenced at Esther 2:23, Esther 6:1, Esther 10:2, and Nehemiah 12:23.

Deuterocanonical references

Book of Tobit Sirach[18]

(verse numbers vary slightly between versions)

2 Maccabees
  • "The archives" referenced by 2Maccabees 2:1[17]
  • Memoirs of Nehemiah referenced by 2Maccabees 2:13,[17] could be the same as the Book of Nehemiah.
  • "letters of the kings" referenced by 2Maccabees 2:13[17]
  • "five books by Jason of Cyrene" referenced by 2Maccabees 2:23: the author of 2 Maccabees here tells us that the work is abridged from the history by Jason.
  • "the king's letter" referenced by 2Maccabees 11:22[17]

New Testament references

Nestle's Greek New Testament lists some 132 New Testament passages that appear to be verbal allusions to paracanonical books.[20]

Pagan authors quoted or alluded to:[21][22]

  • Menander, Thais 218 (1 Cor. 15:33)
  • Epimenides (and later Aratus, Phaenomena 5), (Acts 17:28). Paul introduced another quotation from Epimenides (de Oraculis) by calling him a prophet of the Cretans (Titus 1:12–13). see Epimenides paradox.

Non canonical books quoted or alluded to:[21]

See also


  1. ^ Sometimes called The Book of the Wars of Yahweh. One source says "The quotation is in lyrical form, so it is possibly a book of poetry or a hymnal...Moses quoted it, so the date of its composition must have been prior to the completion of the Pentateuch, perhaps during the wanderings in the wilderness. Nothing else is known about it, and it survives only in Moses’ quotation."[1]
  2. ^ Also called The Book of Statutes or 3 Samuel.
  3. ^ The Book of the Acts of SolomonAlso called
  4. ^ Also called The Book of the Annals of King David or The Chronicles of King David, which could be a reference to the rest of 1 Chronicles.[2]
  5. ^ [3]
  6. ^ . could be a reference to 2 Samuel
  7. ^ The Acts of Gad the Seer or Gad the SeerAlso called
  8. ^ Also called The Prophesy of Ahijah the Shilonite [4].
  9. ^ Also called The Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah.
  10. ^ Also called The Book of Jehu the son of Hanani
  11. ^ Midrash on the Book of KingsAlso called
  12. ^ [5]
  13. ^ Also called The Vision of the Prophet Isaiah. May be identical to the pseudepigraphal Ascension of Isaiah. May also refer to the existing Book of Isaiah
  14. ^ [6]
  15. ^ The Acts of the SeersAlso called
  16. ^ Also called The Book of Records of the Chronicles or The Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Media and Persia
  17. ^ a b c d e f See footnote to the Biblical passage in The Jerusalem Bible, Garden City, New York: Doubleday & Company, 1966
  18. ^ Other names include: Ecclesiasticus or Wisdom of Jesus Ben Sira
  19. ^ Rollston, Chris A. (April 2001). "Ben Sira 38:24–39:11 and The Egyptian Satire of the Trades". Journal of Biblical Literature 120 (Spring): 131–139.  
  20. ^ A general introduction to the Bible: from ancient tablets to modern translations By David Ewert,77
  21. ^ a b James & Jude, Gary Holloway, 140
  22. ^ The Old Testament pseudepigrapha and the New Testament: prolegomena for the, James H. Charlesworth
  23. ^ a b [7]
  24. ^ [8]
  25. ^ Martin, Ralph P. 2 Corinthians Word Biblical Commentary 40,
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Hawaii eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.