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February 16, 2008 / vivator

Constitutions of the Holy Apostles

Constitutions of the Holy Apostles or Apostolic Constitutions is collection of materials on church order.  Despite its name it was composed or compiled near the end of fourth century (c. 380 AD) and consists of eight books dealing with different subjects.  In book eighth, chapter 47.85 it lists books of both Old and New Testament (English translation is from Anti Nicene Fathers, Vol. 7, page 505):

Let the following books be esteemed venerable and holy by you, both of the clergy and laity. Of the Old Covenant: the five books of Moses-Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy; one of Joshua the son of Nun, one of the Judges, one of Ruth, four of the Kings [Samuel and Kings], two of the Chronicles, two of Ezra [Ezra and Nehemiah], one of Esther, one of Judith, three of the Maccabees, one of Job, one hundred and fifty psalms; three books of Solomon-Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and the Song of Songs; sixteen prophets [Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel and twelve minor Prophets]. And besides these, take care that your young persons learn the Wisdom of the very learned Sirach.

The list of Old Testament books has forty three books and includes Judith, 1 to 3 Maccabees and Wisdom while Lamentations might be combined with Jeremiah.  Of the New Testament it lists the following books:

But our sacred books, that is, those of the New Covenant, are these: the four Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John; the fourteen Epistles of Paul; two Epistles of Peter, three of John, one of James, one of Jude; two Epistles of Clement; and the Constitutions dedicated to you the bishops by me Clement, in eight books; which it is not fit to publish before all, because of the mysteries contained in them; and the Acts of us the Apostles.

The list has thirty-six books and lacks Revelation but includes two epistles of Clement and eight books of the Constitution itself.


One Comment

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  1. Christian / Feb 22 2008 8:27 am

    Wonderful Blog 🙂 thankyou may God use all you write to bless many people 🙂

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