Maureen's Reviews > The Lost Books of the Bible

The Lost Books of the Bible by William Hone
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Sep 03, 08

bookshelves: religion, reference
Recommended for: everyone
Read in January, 1989

The debate over which books should be included in the Bible raged on for over fifteen hundred years, with various religious traditions including different texts. In The Lost Books of the Bible, many of the disputed texts which were not included in any version of the Bible are presented.

The texts are organized as are books of the Bible: by book, chapter and verse. This makes them easier to read, since they are placed in a familiar context.

Many of the stories are alternative versions of ones in the Bible. For instance, in book entitled "Infancy", Mary gives the wise men one of Jesus' swaddling clothes, which they present to the emperor. When the cloth is laid in a fire, it does not burn. The magi take the cloth and lay it among their treasures. In the gospel of Nicodemus, Pontius Pilate is portrayed as not wanting to order Jesus' execution he becomes afraid, though, when the Roman standards bow to Jesus when he enters the room.

I recommend this as a companion text to Elaine Pagel's book, The Gnostic Gospels for the solid historical background she provides in alternate early Christian scripture.
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