"The Jews never accepted the Deuterocanon [Apocrypha]." You'll hear this in conversations with Protestants and read it on virtually every Protestant website that defends the Protestant Old Testament canon. But is it true?
One could appeal to New Testament evidence that Jesus, the apostles, and the inspired authors of the New Testament did indeed accept the Deuterocanon as Scripture. But what about extrabiblical evidence? Does any exist?
One of the earliest pieces of evidence comes from a person who, despite his hostility toward Christianity, nevertheless attests to a few truths of Christianity, including the acceptance of the Deuterocanon: Rabbi Akiba ben Joseph (A.D. 37-137).
A second revolt
Before we look at what Akiba had to say about the...