Your Protestant friend is having coffee with you again, and he’s brought another big question with him.
He takes a sip of coffee, pauses, and says, “The Deuterocanonical books are really just apocrypha added by Catholics in 1546. The Bible has 66 books, not 73.”
Good question. But you don’t need to worry—you’re ready for this. You’ve been getting a steady diet of Get Fed and can answer this question easily!
The claim that the Deuterocanon (the seven books of Tobias, Judith, Baruch, Ecclesiastes, Wisdom, and Maccabees I and II) was added in 1546 is a myth that arose during the Protestant Revolution to justify removing books from Sacred Scripture that went against incorrect Protestant teachings.
The Deuterocanon was not added in 1546. The oldest complete form of the Old Testament, a Greek translation called the Septuagint, contained these seven books (which were originally in Greek).
When the Church finalized the Old and New Testament books that made up the Bible in 382 A.D., she declared the Septuagint to be the official Old Testament. This decision was ratified in subsequent Church councils, with the last ratification taking place at Trent in…1546. The Church was not adding any new books—she was simply affirming the books that had been there all along.
This 73-book version of the Bible remained predominant up to and through the Protestant Revolution. In fact, the King James Version of 1611 contained all seven of the Deuterocanonical books!
This is just one of many questions your Protestant friend might bring to the table. It can be intimidating answering him—but don’t worry. Catholic Apologist Gerard Verschuuren is here to help! In his fascinating and charitably-written book Forty Anti-Catholic Lies, you’ll learn the truths that debunk claims such as “Catholics worship Mary” or “The Inquisition murdered thousands.” Precise, authoritative, and sometimes humorous, this book will equip you with the truth and confidence to defend the Church. Get your copy today!