I’ve been slowly working my way through Bauckham/Davila/Panayotov’s Old Testament Pseudepigrapha: More Noncanonical Scriptures (amazon.com). I mentioned this at the beginning of the month.
As I’ve been reading, I’ve been tweeting (from @RickBrannan, if you’re Twitterified) summaries of each document using the #MoreOTP hashtag to denote them. Unfortunately, Twitter’s search function “sucketh mightily” (to put it in the KJV tongue) and I had to actually go through my timeline to grab tweets older than a week or two. This means I may have missed one or two.
Anyway, I thought it would be useful to catalogue the summary tweets to date here. I’m about halfway through the book, page-wise. The list is in reverse order, that is, the first doc in the book is the last item on this list.
Here are the summaries:
- Jeremiah's Prophecy to Passhur: Mt 27.9–10 wrapped in Jewish apocryphon. #MoreOTP
- Heartless Rich Man & Precious Stone: Rich man reads Pr 19.17, gives it all away, becomes bitter. Then God intervenes and blesses. #MoreOTP
- Nine and a Half Tribes: A portion of Israel, saved, beyond the rivers. They return with Messiah. They're vegetarian and they're mad #MoreOTP
- Questions of the Queen of Sheba and Answers by King Solomon: 12 (13?) questions. Some weird. What was going' thru her mind, anyway? #MoreOTP
- Hygromancy of Solomon: Solomon gives Rehoboam the skinny on gods/angels/demons of each day and hour. Info on plants & potions too. #MoreOTP
- Selenodromion of David and Solomon: 1 part lunar calendar, 1 part horoscope, 1 part patriarch names, 1 part fortune cookie. #MoreOTP
- Exorcistic Psalms of David and Solomon: Psalm 91, with some twists. Demons OUT! #MoreOTP
- Aramaic Song of the Lamb: Because you always wanted to know the trash-talk between David and Goliath. Oh D's stones had names, too #MoreOTP
- Songs of David: Liturgical Psalms using Messiah-ish language. Plus MS poss. originated at Qumran, then Jer., to Cairo c. 790 AD/CE. #MoreOTP
- Eldad & Modad: One likely citation (thanks, Hermas) and a lot of speculation, much of it fueled by J.B. Lightfoot. #MoreOTP
- Balaam Text from Tell Deir 'Allā: Balaam sees the gods in their council, deciding to darken the world. Balaam fasts and weeps. #MoreOTP
- Eighth Book of Moses: Um, yeah, weird. Author needed to pass himself off as Moses otherwise nobody would read it. Oh, and spells. #MoreOTP
- Tiburtine Sibyl (Gk): 9 gens from creation to destruction; 4th = Messiah, then bad to worse. 9th = Apocalypse w/Danielic overtones. #MoreOTP
- Testament of Job (Coptic Fragments): Mostly like Greek T.Job, but author named (Nereus) and other small differences. #MoreOTP
- Midrash Vayissa'u: Jacob and his sons war against Ninevites, then Amorites, then Esau and his sons; with superhero-esque feats. #MoreOTP
- Aramaic Levi: Likely source of T.Levi, also tells of Isaac instructing Levi how to sacrifice as priest #MoreOTP
- Syriac History of Joseph: Overtones of Biblical account, but more detail of episodes in Egypt. #MoreOTP
- Story of Melchizedek: Born a prince, finds God, almost sacrificed, wild man for 7 years, cleaned up by Abraham then blesses him. #MoreOTP
- Inquiry of Abraham: Abraham sang with the animals and the animals sang with him, or so say some. #MoreOTP
- Dispute over Abraham: Righteous and wicked angels dispute Abraham's salvation or damnation. (But it is only a sentence long) #MoreOTP
- Apocryphon of Eber: Eber is in the Bible, alive for Tower of Babel but did not build. He must be the source of hEB(E)Rew language. #MoreOTP
- Book of Noah: Post-flood sin sourced from the spirits of drowned nephilim; 90% throttled by angels, who also show Noah homeopathy #MoreOTP
- Apocryphon of Seth: The Magi — generations who watched for the Messiah, and welcomed him. #MoreOTP
- The Book of the Covenant: Didymus refers to it, but does not quote. Could it be Jubilees? Sources say "nope." #MoreOTP
- Life of Adam & Eve (Coptic Frags): The fall, as told by Eve; and Adam's final day. #MoreOTP
- Adam Octipartite: Adam, formed from eight ingredients, the first of men formed from elemental substances (and other stuff). #MoreOTP
Overall, the book is excellent. Some intros are better than others, but when you consider that many of these items are less than a page and extant in only one or two sources, there isn’t much you can do in an intro.