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    Why The Catholic Bible Has 7 Extra Books

    The Catholic Bible

    Why does the “Catholic Bible” (canon) have 46 books in the Old Testament?

    The Catholic Bible contains 7 books that are not in the Jewish or Protestant OT.

    The books are:
    1. Baruch
    2. Judith
    3. 1 Maccabees
    4. 2 Maccabees
    5. Sirach
    6. Tobit and
    7. Wisdom

    The reason for this is that. . .

    The Catholic Church (read, early Christians) adopted the Septuagint. The Septuagint existed before Christianity and before Jesus was born. It was a translation of the Jewish scripture from Hebrew to Greek.

    The Septuagint came from the Jews themselves which was meant to help their fellow Jews and non-Jews in diaspora who could not read or understand Hebrew scripture to be able to read them in Greek.

    The Septuagint contains those 7 books. Jews compiled the books in the third century BC and found no problem with them. Then, 900 years later, some Jews came up and rejected the Septuagint when they were compiling the canon of their scripture now known as the Masoretic text.

    The reasons they rejected them are:

    1. On the basis that they were not originally written in the Hebrew language. But a twist occurred in the 20th century when the Dead Sea scroll was discovered, the original Hebrew version of those books was discovered.

    2. They also rejected the 7 books because the books have some themes in them that appeal to Christian theology. So for them, it is a way of disassociating themselves from Christians especially as it was clear to them that Christians adopted the Septuagint. That is also why they don’t consider the New Testament as scripture. Of course, they don’t even see Jesus as the Messiah.

    Below is the full list of the Catholic canon of the Bible. The ones with (*) are the books not found in Jewish or protestant canon. The ones with (+) are the books that contain some extra chapters not found in the Jewish or protestant canon.

    Catholic OT: 46 books

    Pentateuch (5):
    1. Genesis,
    2. Exodus,
    3. Leviticus,
    4. Numbers,
    5. Deuteronomy

    Historical books (16):
    6. Joshua,
    7. Judges,
    8. Ruth,
    9. 1 Samuel,
    10. 2 Samuel,
    11. 1 Kings,
    12. 2 Kings,
    13. 1 Chronicles,
    14. 2 Chronicles,
    15. Ezra,
    16. Nehemiah,
    17. Tobit (*),
    18. Judith (*),
    19. Esther (+),
    20. 1 Maccabees (*),
    21. 2 Maccabees (*)

    Poetic Books (7):
    22. Job,
    23. Psalms,
    24. Proverbs,
    25. Ecclesiastes,
    26. Song of Songs,
    27. Wisdom of Solomon (*),
    28. Sirach (*)

    Prophetic books (18):
    29. Isaiah,
    30. Jeremiah,
    31. Lamentations,
    32. Baruch (*),
    33. Ezekiel,
    34. Daniel (+),
    35. Hosea,
    36. Joel,
    37. Amos,
    38. Obadiah,
    39. Jonah,
    40. Micah,
    41. Nahum,
    42. Habakkuk,
    43. Zephaniah,
    44. Haggai,
    45. Zechariah,
    46. Malachi

    Note: In the Septuagint, there are added chapters of Esther and Daniel which are not found in the protestant or Jewish bible.

    They are Esther (10:4–16, 14) and Daniel (3:27–90, 13, 14).

    If you read the added chapters, you will understand the story of Esther better and even the story of Daniel and the three Hebrew children whom Nebuchadnezzar put in the fire.

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