Canon of Carthage different from the Canon of Trent?

Did the Scripture canon at the 4th century synod of Carthage differ from the canon at the 16th Council of Trent?

Some Protestants claim yes, yet they are in the majority among Protestant scholars. Most Protestants claim otherwise.

Kaycee, from this thread (don’t read the bible ), seems to take the view that the canon of Carthage differed from the canon of Trent. This thread is started to discuss this issue.

Kaycee claimed (source):

Some have suggested that Jerome later changed his opinion and included the Apocrypha in the canon of the Vulgate.

Yes, since the earliest manuscripts of Sacred Scripture based upon the Vulgate (5th century or 6th cent?) include the larger recension of the Book of Daniel, for instance, it is clear from the evidence that Jerome’s recension of Daniel differed from the truncated version claimed by the Protestants.

In fact, every ancient Christian manuscript of Sacred Scripture in other than fragmentary form testifies to the larger recension of Daniel. This is confirmed even by Protestant authors.

**Protestant **historian J.N.D. Kelly states:

“It should be observed that the Old Testament thus admitted as authoritative in the [ancient Christian] Church was somewhat bulkier and more comprehensive than the [Protestant Old Testament].” (Early Christian Doctrines, 53-54).

According to the Protestant commentary within the New Oxford Annotated Bible:

“… the ancient Greek version of the Book of Daniel is considerably longer than the surviving Hebrew text. … All Greek witnesses place the Prayer of Azarias and the Song of the Three Jews in Dan ch. 3…The Greek translation made by [2nd cent. Hebrew scholar] Theodotion … includes all the outstanding passages in the Greek Daniel as integral parts of the book … The Old Latin, Coptic, and Arabic versions follow Theodotion…. Jerome’s Latin Vulgate followed Theodotion.”

Jerome refutes the contrary accusation that he rejected the larger version of Daniel in his refutation against Rufinius (ca. AD 405):

“What sin have I committed if I follow the judgment of the churches? But he who brings charges against me for relating [in my preface to the book of Daniel] the objections that the Hebrews are wont to raise against the story of Susannah [Dan. 13], the Song of the Three Children [Dan. 3:29–68, RSV-CE], and the story of Bel and the Dragon [Dan. 14], which are not found in the Hebrew volume, proves that he is just a foolish sycophant. I was not relating my own personal views, but rather the remarks that they are wont to make against us. If I did not reply to their views in my preface, in the interest of brevity, lest it seem that I was composing not a preface, but a book, I believe I added promptly the remark, for I said, ‘This is not the time to discuss such matters’” (Against Rufinius 11:33 [A.D. 401]).

This is actually an issue I have looked into with a little bit of depth. I will wait to see if the particular area I have looked into will come up, and if so, I will post a reply I had prepared sometime ago but never put up.

Ryle gives the following history of the differences in the books of Esdras as represented in the Septuagint and the Vulgate:

In the lists of the Old Testament which include the Apocryphal books, an element of confusion is caused by the Apocryphal ‘Ezra,’ our First Book of Esdras. In the LXX Version, the Old Latin, and the Syriac, this Apocryphal Greek Book was placed, out of regard probably for chronology, before the Hebrew Ezra, and was called the First of Ezra…while our Ezra and Nehemiah appeared as one book, with the title of the Second of Ezra. In his translation of the Vulgate, Jerome did not recognize the Canonicity of the Apocryphal Books. He translated the Hebrew Ezra (our Ezra and Nehemiah) as one book with the title of Ezra; but he acquiesced in the division of the Canonical Ezra into two books, for he speaks of the Apocryphal books as the third and fourth of Ezra…In the Vulgate, accordingly, Ezra and Nehemiah were called the First and Second of Ezra; the Apocryphal Greek Ezra was called the Third of Ezra; the Apocalyptic work, the Fourth of Ezra…The influence of the Vulgate caused the names applied in the books in that version to be generally adopted in the West. At the Council of Trent, Ezra and Nehemiah are called 'the first book of Ezra and the second of Ezra which is called Nehemiah.'88

These references make it clear that the Septuagint version of 1 and 2 Esdras was different from the one decreed by Trent. The New Catholic Encyclopedia (quoted above) states that for the first five centuries many fathers of the Church regarded 1 Esdras of the Septuagint to be canonical because they followed the Septuagint. Jerome was the first to separate Ezra and Nehemiah into separate books and to assign the title of I Esdras to Ezra and 2 Esdras to Nehemiah in order to conform to the Hebrew canon. The Septuagint version of 1 Esdras is quoted, for example, by Justin Martyr, Origen, Clement of Alexandria, Eusebius, Athanasius, Gregory of Nazianzus, Ephrem Syrus, Basil the Great, Chrysostom, Cyprian, Ambrose, Theophilus of Antioch, Dionysius of Alexandria, Augustine and Prosper of Aquaitaine.89 Augustine quoted from the book of III Esdras (I Esdras in the Septuagint) in his work The City of God.90 Thus, when the Council of Carthage gave its list of canonical books for the Old Testament it followed the Septuagint translation. In referring to Esdras as comprising two books they were referring to I and II Esdras of the Septuagint. And when Carthage sent these decrees to Rome for confirmation, it was these books which were confirmed as canonical. Innocent I affirmed this in his letter to Exuperius91 and they were later included in the decrees of Popes Gelasius and Hormisdas. B.F. Westcott confirms these facts:

The enlarged canon of Augustine, which was, as it will be seen, wholly unsupported by any Greek authority, was adopted at the Council of Carthage (A.D. 397?), though with a reservation (Can. 47, De confirmando ist Canone transmarine ecclesia consulatur), and afterwards published in the decretals which bear the name of Innocent, Damasus, and Gelasius…and it recurs in many later writers.92

This contradicts the decree passed by Trent which followed Jerome in assigning I and II Esdras to the canonical Hebrew books of Ezra and Nehemiah respectively. Therefore, Trent declared uncanonical what the Council of Carthage and the bishops of Rome, in the fourth, fifth and sixth centuries, declared to be canonical. Clearly, then, Carthage did not authoritatively establish the canon for the Church universally.

Furthermore, Kaycee from the same thread made the following claim…

**Carthage and Trent have different books!

**The enlarged canon of Augustine, which was, as it will be seen, wholly unsupported by any Greek authority, was adopted at the Council of Carthage (A.D. 397?) AND contradicts the decree passed by Trent which followed Jerome in assigning I and II Esdras to the canonical Hebrew books of Ezra and Nehemiah respectively. **Therefore, Trent declared uncanonical what the Council of Carthage and the bishops of Rome, in the fourth, fifth and sixth centuries, declared to be canonical. **

I’d say that you have failed to look at the evidence in detail, and are merely parroting what you’ve heard from Protetant polemicists who make claims completely contrary to notable Protestant historians.

For instance, Protestant historian Philip Schaff states:

“The council of Hippo in 393, and the third (according to another reckoning the sixth) council of Carthage in 397, under the influence of Augustine, who attended both, fixed the catholic canon of the Holy Scriptures, including the Apocrypha of the Old Testament… The New Testament canon is the same as ours. This decision of the transmarine church however, was subject to ratification; and the concurrence of the Roman see it received when Innocent I and Gelasius I a.d. 414) repeated the same index of biblical books. This canon remained undisturbed till the sixteenth century, and was sanctioned by the council of Trent at its fourth session.” (Schaff, Philip, History of the Christian Church, Vol. III, Ch 9)

From another scholarly Protestant source, The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church (2nd ed., edited by F.L. Cross & E.A. Livingstone, Oxford Univ. Press, 1983, p.232), refers to the earlier synod of Rome in AD 382:

A council probably held at Rome in 382 under St. Damasus gave a complete list of the canonical books of both the Old Testament and the New Testament (also known as the ‘Gelasian Decree’ because it was reproduced by Gelasius in 495), which is identical with the list given at Trent.”

The applicable canon from the AD 382 Synod of Rome states:

The Decree of Pope St. Damasus I, Council of Rome. 382 A.D…

"It is likewise decreed: Now, indeed, we must treat of the divine Scriptures: what the universal Catholic Church accepts and what she must shun. The list of the Old Testament begins: Genesis, one book; Exodus, one book: Leviticus, one book; Numbers, one book; Deuteronomy, one book; Jesus Nave, one book; of Judges, one book; Ruth, one book; of Kings, four books; Paralipomenon, two books;** One Hundred and Fifty Psalms**, one book; of Solomon, three books: Proverbs, one book; ecclesiastes, one book; Canticle of Canticles, one book; likewise, Wisdom, one book; Ecclesiasticus (Sirach), one book; Likewise, the list of the Prophets: Isaiah, one book; Jeremias, one book [included Baruch]; along with Cinoth, that is, his Lamentations; Ezechiel, one book; Daniel, one book; Osee, one book; Amos, one book; Micheas, one book; Joel, one book; Abdias, one book; Jonas, one book; Nahum, one book; Habacuc, one book; Sophonias, one book; Aggeus, one book; Zacharias, one book; Malachias, one book. Likewise, the list of histories: Job, one book; Tobias, one book;** Esdras, two books**; Esther, one book; Judith, one book; of Maccabees, two books.

Likewise, the list of the Scriptures of the New and Eternal Testament, which the holy and Catholic Church receives: of the Gospels, one book according to Matthew, one book according to Mark, one book according to Luke, one book according to John. The Epistles of the Apostle Paul, fourteen in number: one to the Romans, two to the Corinthians, one to the Ephesians, two to the Thessalonians, one to the Galatians, one to the Philippians, one to the Colossians, two to Timothy, one to Titus one to Philemon, one to the Hebrews. Likewise, one book of the Apocalypse of John. And the Acts of the Apostles, one book. Likewise, the canonical epistles, seven in number: of the Apostle Peter, two Epistles; of the Apostle James, one Epistle; of the Apostle John, one Epistle; of the other John, a Presbyter, two Epistles; of the Apostle Jude the Zealot, one Epistle. Thus concludes the canon of the New Testament. "

Kaycees theory is that the two books of Esdras canonized in the 4th century were what Catholics (and Jerome) call 1 and 3 Esdras.

Some nomenclature discussion is in order…

Esdras, two books" in the canons of the 4th century (Rome, Hippo, Carthage), as well as the list from the 15th cent. Florence and the 16th cent. Trent refer to what is now called Ezra and Nehemiah.

The Latin nomenclature of the various Esdras books are as follows:

1 Esdras = Ezra
2 Esdras = Nehemiah

The non-canonical texts are

3 Esdras = called 1 Esdras by Protestants
4 Esdras = called 2 Esdras by Protestants

It is quite clear, well before Trent, what the Catholic Church accepted. Anyone that has ever seen a Gutenburg Bible understands that the Canon, well before Trent understood the two books of Esdra to be “Ezra and Nehemiah.” This was clear at the the Council of Florence which confirmed the canon of the 4th century…

Florence Session 11—4 February 1442:

First, then, the holy Roman church, founded on the words of our Lord and Saviour, firmly believes, professes and preaches …that one and the same God is the author of the old and the new Testament — that is, the law and the prophets, and the gospel — since the saints of both testaments spoke under the inspiration of the same Spirit. It accepts and venerates their books, whose titles are as follows.

Five books of Moses, namely Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy; Joshua, Judges, Ruth, four books of Kings, two of Paralipomenon, Esdras, Nehemiah, Tobit, Judith, Esther, Job, Psalms of David, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Baruch, Ezechiel, Daniel; the twelve minor prophets, namely Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi; two books of the Maccabees; the four gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John; fourteen letters of Paul, to the Romans, two to the Corinthians, to the Galatians, to the Ephesians, to the Philippians, two to the Thessalonians, to the Colossians, two to Timothy, to Titus, to Philemon, to the Hebrews; two letters of Peter, three of John, one of James, one of Jude; Acts of the Apostles; Apocalypse of John.

The bogus claim, championed by author William Webster while having no basis in fact is that “*Hippo and Carthage state that 1 Esdras and 2 Esdras are canonical. They are referring here to the Septuagint version of 1 and 2 Esdras. In this version 1 Esdras is the Apocryphal additions to Ezra while 2 Esdras is the Jewish verion of Ezra-Nehemiah from the Jewish canon.” *(William Webster, The Canon).

Webster provides no evidence of his claim. Neither Hippo nor Carthage were referring to LXX 1 Esdras (apocryphal) or LXX 2 Esdras (Ezra-Nehemiah). On the contrary, the thesis is rather untenable if one actually reads the contents of the apocryphal Esdras (Latin Esdras 3, LXX Esdras 1).

LXX 1 Esdras is not a “another” book of the Bible, but a different non-canonized recension of already canonized books. It consists of canonical Ezra, part of 2 Chronicles and part of Nehemiah, in addition to some additonal verses not found in either of the canonical Chronicles-Ezra-Nehemiah.

Thus, 1 Esdras-LXX is a different recension of 2 Esdras-LXX. Why would both be canonized? We already have all of 2 Chronicles, all of Ezra, and all of Nehemiah in the canon of Scripture, so why add a different recension which duplicated them, adding some apocryphal verses to it? Why would anyone conclude that Hippo would have canonized Ezra-Nemehiah as one book of Ezra, then also canonize another recension of Chronicles-Ezra-Nehemiah? It makes no sense. Yet, despite the lack of evidence, this is Webster’s rather bizzare claim…a claim contrary to other Protestant sources which I cited above.

Furthermore, St. Augustine refers to these two books of Ezra, saying that the second is simply a contiuation of the first.

St. Augustine, On Christian Doctrine, Bk II, chapt. 8…

…and the two of Ezra, which last look more like a sequel to the continuous regular history which terminates with the books of Kings and Chronicles.

Now, Latin 1 Esdras (Ezra) and Latin 2 Esdras (Nehemiah) fit Augustine’s own description perfectly. However, LXX-1 Esdra (part of Chronicles-most of Ezra-parts of Nehemiah) followed by LXX-2 Esdras (Ezra-Nehemiah) do not fit such a description, as LXX-1-Esdras is nothing more than an uninspired variant of already canonized books containe din LXX-2 Esdras.

iT might help to understand what the apocryphal 3 Esdras (Latin)/LXX-1 Esdras consists of…

LXX 1 Esdras 1 = 2 Chron. 35:1 through 2 Chron 36:21

Duplication of material already found in 2 Chronicles.

LXX 1 Esdras 2:1-15 = Ezra1:1-11
LXX 1 Esdras 2:16-26 = Ezra 4:7-24

Now LXX 1 Esdras begins to substantially duplicate material found in Ezra, which is included in LXX-2 Esdras

LXX 1 Esdras 3:1 through 5:6 has no parallel in any part of the Old Testament. It is apocryphal.

LXX 1 Esdras 5:7-73 = Ezra 2 through 4:1-5
LXX 1 Esdras 6:1 through 7:15 = Ezra 5:1 through 6:22
LXX 1 Esdras 8:1-67 = Ezra 7:1 through 8:36
LXX 1 Esdras 8:68-90 = Ezra 9
LXX 1 Esdras 8:91 through 9:36 = Ezra 10

More duplication of Ezra, which is contained also in
LXX-2 Esdras. Thus, it makes no sense to canonize both.

LXX 1 Esdras 9:37-55 = Neh. 7:73 through 8:12

Now the variant recension begins to duplicate material found in ch. 7 and 8 of canonical Nehemiah, which is also found in LXX-2 Esdras. Yet, the historical events discussed in the apocryphal LXX 1 Esdras are parallel to those event in canonical Ezra, with the exception of chapter 1 which agrees with 2Ch. 35:1 through 36:21.

In what way could LXX 1 Esdras and LXX 2 Esdras be considered the supposed “two book of Esdras” canonized at Hippo, if according to Augustine of Hippo these two books “**look more like a sequel to the continuous regular history which terminates with the books of Kings and Chronicles.” **(On Christian Doctrine, Bk II, chapt. 8)?

LXX 1 Esdras is no sequal to LXX 2 Esdras. But Latin 1 Esdras (Ezra) and Latin 2 Esdas (Nehemiah) are “like a sequel.”

The Council of Trent lists 45 books of the Old Testament not 46, because like the Traditional Bible (LV) it considers Lamentations part of Jeremiah. It also lists 27 books of the New Testament. This canon is exactly the same as the Traditional Bible (LV) as it was listed for over 1000 years before the Council of Trent. This canon was agreed upon (after much debate) by the earlier popes mentioned and both regional (provincial) and ecumenical official church councils or synods. Today’s Catholic Bibles usually count a 73-book canon of Scripture, not 72. This is simply because they number the book of Lamentations separate from Jeremiah. However, once dogmatically defined, there can be no dispute as to the canonicity of the sacred books on the part of Catholics. Here are a few keywords and phrases to help in understanding what the Council of Trent did: reaffirmed, reiterated what had already been taught, dogmatically defined.

Early Protestant reformers of the 16th century like Martin Luther, Martin Bucer, Ulrich Zwingli, and John Calvin promoted individual judgment and interpretation of the Bible. They rejected outside authority (John 17: 20-23) (Luke 10: 16) that is the Holy Spirit sent upon the Church by Christ to teach and guide the Church as a universal body in matters of faith and morals. In effect, we have Korah’s revolt on a grand scale (Num. 16:2-33) (Jude 1:4-8). Protestant churches then became fragmented into many thousands (well over 20,000) of Protestant denominations and growing. [8] They can have standards of moral behavior that will accommodate almost any lifestyle. They appeal to pride and self, by claiming to be “progressive” or “modern”. They claim “rights” not given by God using appealing terms like “personal choice.” For example, man was not empowered by God to cause abortion, or to use artificial contraceptives. To do so is usurpation of power, an illegal seizure; a wrongful encroachment of and violation of sacred space. It is sin. The early Protestant reformers of the 16th century also adapted a shorter, 66-book canon of Scripture. They have a large chunk of truth but not the fullness of the truth in the Church founded by Jesus Christ. It is the Protestant churches that are adopting relatively recent or novel doctrines like justification by faith alone (sola fide) and use of the Bible alone (sola scriptura) as the only source of divine revelation. They eliminated the deuterocanonical books of the Traditional Bible (LV) of the Catholic Church, which had been in use for over 1000 years, and which supported Catholic doctrine like prayer for the dead and Purgatory found in 2 Maccabees

Esdras is what I was going to post about, but it looks like Dave has done a fine job of that!

William Webster’s false claim, a claim that James White also makes in his work, is based on false data. In their work, they claim that Jerome seperated the LXX book of Esdras (containing what we call Ezra and Nehemiah) into two books, when in fact Jerome’s own introduction to Esdras makes it clear that he did not do this, but he in fact combined the books into one work for his edition, writing, “No one ought to be bothered by the fact that my edition consists of only one book…”

Their claim is that when Carthage (Or Damasus) canonized the books, they were counting them to be, as Dave said, 1 Esdras and 3 Esdras. This is based off the claim that the councils were using the LXX naming system, which has Ezra and Nehemiah in one combined book ( called 2 Esdras) and apocryphal Esdras in another (called 1 Esdras). However, if they had already done this, there would be no reason for Jerome to tell people not to be concerend about his combining Ezra-Nehemiah into one book, since that would be what had been canonized already. The only reason he would have to say this is that the councils listed two books of Esdras, whereas Jerome had them combined into one. It is clear that the councils were not using the LXX naming system, but an old Latin naming system which already had the books seperated. The existence of a Latin system prior to the Vulgate is also something that Mr. Webster and Mr. White fail to mention.

With regard to Catholic historians and what they consider the facts:

The 1909 Catholic Encyclopedia states regarding Esdras III: “***Although not belonging to the Canon of the Sacred Scriptures, this book is usually found, ne prorsus intereat, in an appendix to the editions of the Vulgate.***”

According to another non-Catholic source, “The Books of Chronicles are placed after the Books of Kings, as being a later account of the matters narrated in Kings; and Ezra and Nehemiah follow Chronicles as being continuations of the narrative.” (The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, "Chronicles, two books). That’s pretty much what Augustine affirmed.

From the same non-Catholic source above, “In the Septuagint, Ezra-Nehemiah is called Esdras B, while an apocryphal Book of Ezra is called Esdras A. In the catalogues of the Old Testament writings handed down to us by the Fathers (Origen, Cyril, Melito, Jerome and the Council of Laodicea) our Ezra is called 1 Ezra; Nehemiah, 2 Ezra; the apocryphal Greek Ezra, 3 Ezra;” (ibid. “Ezra-Nehemiah”).

Ezra-Nehemiah was found in some Greek manuscripts as separate books, which were called “1 & 2 Esdras”.

Moreover, St. Cyril of Jerusalem described 1 Esdra and 2 Esdra correctly, saying, “the first and second of Esdras are counted one.” (Catechetical Lectures, iv, 33). Thus, Ezra and Nehemiah, which are equivalent to “first and second of Esdras” are counted as one by the Hebrews. The Hebrews did not count LXX Esdras A “as one” with LXX Esdras B. Nor did Origen. Nor did Jerome who also studied in Jerusalem.

Contrary to Webster’s claim, the division of Ezra-Nehemiah into two separate books did not originate with St. Jerome’s Vulgate in the late 4th and early 5th centuries, but came much earlier among old Latin manuscripts and Greek manuscripts.

Now, the claim by Protestants is that the nomenclature of the books “Esdras, two books” made by Carthage was based upon a supposed undrestanding that these two books were actually 1) Ezra-Nehemiah and 2) another recension of Ezra which included duplication of 2 Chron-Ezra-Nehemiah.

Yet, this claim is unsupported by historical evidence, which is why serious Protestant scholars reject it. Why? Because serious Protestant scholars understand that even among the Greeks, for instance, Origen, the books known as “Esdras, two books” did indeed mean 1) Ezra and 2) Nehemiah. This is clear from the patristic evidence. Observe…

Origen contrasted the Hebrew and Christian reckoning of Scripture. He described the Christian usage of “first and second Kings” to among “them” (ie. the Hebrews) as “among them one, Samoel.” Likewise, our “third and fourth Kings” among the Hebrews “one, Wammelch David.” Of our first and second Chronicles, among the Hebrews, “one, Dabreiamein.”

What does he say regarding “our” two books of Esdras in contrast to their “one” book?

Origen: "**Of our first and second Esdras, among the Hebrews “one, Ezra.” **Hmmmmmm…but according to the above Protesant polemics, the Greek “Esdras, two books” could ONLY mean the LXX book “Ezra-Nehemiah” and the aprocryphal duplicate recension of “2 Chron-Ezra-Nehemiah”. But this is not Origen’s claim. He claims the two books of Esdra are the SAME as the ONE book called by the Hebrews Ezra (which contains Ezra and Nehemiah in ONE BOOK).

Observe, from Origen (who preceded the synod of Carthage and Jerome’s Latin Vulgate)…

"The twenty-two books of the Hebrews are the following: That which is called by us Genesis, but by the Hebrews, from the beginning of the book, Breshith, which means ‘in the beginning’; … the first and second of Kings, among them one, Samoel, that is, ‘the called of God’; the third and fourth of Kings in one, Wammelch David, that is, ‘the kingdom of David’; of the Chronicles, the first and second in one, Dabreiamein, that is, ‘records of days’; Esdras, first and second in one, Ezra, that is, ‘an assistant’; the book of Psalms, Spharthelleim; the Proverbs of Solomon, Meloth; Ecclesiastes, Koelth; the Song of Songs (not, as some suppose, Songs of Songs), Sir Hassirim; Isaiah, Jessia; Jeremiah, with Lamentations and the Epistle(b) in one, Jeremia; Daniel, Daniel; Ezekiel, Jezekiel; Job, Job; Esther, Esther; And outside of these there are the Maccabees, which are entitled Sarbeth Sabanaiel.” (Origen quoted by Eusebius in his Ecclesiastical History, VI. 25)

Consequently, when Carthage speaks of Esdras, two books" it is speaking of what the Greek Father Origen long before understood as the division of Esdra, two books, that is: Ezra and Nehemiah.

Pope St. Damasus was the one who commissioned St. Jerome to prepare the Latin Vulgate. His decree of AD 38s did indeed decree the Esdras, two books (Ezra and Nehemiah) to be “Divine Scriptures.” There was no confusion on the matter as St. Jerome worked directly for Pope Damasus on the project. St. Jerome included Ezra and Nehemiah as the canonical books.

Here’s St. Jerome’s view of the Esdras books:

In Jerome’s own words, Ezra-Nehemiah was already “divided amongst Greeks and Latins into two books”. Observe…

“To the third class belong the Hagiographa, of which the first book begins with Job…the eighth, Ezra [note: one book by Hebrew reckoning]***, which itself is likewise divided amongst Greeks and Latins into two books***; the ninth is Esther.” (St. Jerome, Preface to Samuel & Kings, NPNF, Series 2, Volume 6)

This view is congruent with the patristic evidence and view of the Greek Scripture scholar, Origen. Protestant polemical claims to the contrary, notwithstanding.

It is clear from the evidence that it was NOT Jerome that initiated the renaming of the Esdra books, but this nomenclature was known even in the time of Origen among the Greeks…

Moreover, Augustine’s diocese of Hippo used the Old Latin. There’s a distinct lack of argument from Augustine toward Jerome for supposedly boldly renaming the books. One would not expect silence on this issue if indeed Augustine intended 3 Esdra to be canonical at Hippo. Augustine and Jerome argued back and forth over JUST ONE WORD of the Book of Job. It is unreasonable to presume that Augustine didn’t mind that an ENTIRE BOOK of Esdras, which he supposedly canonized was demoted to “3 Esdras” by Jerome, while he had a heck of a lot of backlash to deal with over Jerome’s choice of ONE WORD that differed from the Old Latin of the Book of Job.

St. Innocent I (AD 405) affirmed the same canonical list as Rome, Hippo and Carthage [cf. Pope Innocent I letter to Excuperius, Bishop of Toulouse, (Feb. 20 AD 405), 6, 7, 13]

The decree of Damasus stated, unequivocally, “It is likewise decreed: Now, indeed, we must treat of the divine Scriptures: what the universal Catholic Church accepts and what she must shun.” Innocent I likes asserted (AD 405): “A short annotation shows what books are to be accepted as canonical. As you wished to be informed specificially…” (Ep. to Bp. Exsuperious). To suggest that this list by Innocent I did not include the same texts listed by Trent is absurd, and contrary to conclusion of serious Protestant historians cited above.

Dave, I see that Kaycee hasn’t bothered to show up in the thread yet. :thumbsup:

Kaycee has posted above, but I think I overwhelmed him (her?) with information. I’ll let it all sink it.:thumbsup:

I’d love for her to answer why her book of Daniel is truncated from Jeromes, from Origens, from every Church of Christ which preceded the Protestant Reformation. That quesiton has never been seriously addressed by any Protestant on this forum, and I wish at least one would have the confidence to take on such a challenge. We have soooo much manuscript evidence at our disposal, and the evidence of history is sooo clear, once you get into the details. The conclusion is irrefutable: the Protestants truncated the Holy Bible.

I just noticed…this should say “…they are in the MINORITY…” :o

Kaycee…given the above testimony from Origen, Jerome, Cyril, confirmed by even Protestant sources, the above claim by Ryle is contradicted by the evidence of history, no?

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