The apocryphal sections of Daniel, Esther, and Jeremiah are vibrant works that cast light on the life and thought of the Jewish nation at the time of the Exile, adding dramatic excitement to, and increasing the religious significance of, those beloved Bible tales.
The Additions to the Book of Daniel tell the exciting stories of the Fiery Furnace, Susanna and the Elders, and the confrontations between Daniel and the gods of Babylon and show how God preserved the faithful in the face of certain death.
The Book of Esther is transformed by its Additions from so-called "secular" work to a wonderful and dramatic tale of God's concern and care for his people under the tyranny of foreign oppressors.
The Additions to the Book of Jeremiah consist of poems and prayers addressed to the people of the exile, exhorting them to shun idolatry and offering encouragement for an oppressed nation.
Why were these invaluable additions excluded from the canonical versions of these books? This is a fascinating question that is considered in the introductions and notes to the different sections of this volume. The engrossing problems of authorship, date, and place of composition, as well as the intended relevance of each addition, are also dealt with clearly and comprehensively, Illustrated by eight pages of well-known photographs, this work amplifies and enhances our understanding and appreciation of the canonical scriptures.
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