The Book of Baruch

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The Book of Baruch

The Book of Baruch is a deuterocanonical book of the Bible in some Christian traditions. In Judaism and Protestant Christianity, it is considered not to be part of the canon, with the Protestant Bibles categorizing it as part of the Biblical apocrypha. It is named after Baruch ben Neriah, Jeremiah's well-known scribe, who is mentioned at Baruch 1:1, and has been presumed to be the author of the whole work. The book is a reflection of a late Hebrew writer on the circumstances of Hebrew exiles from Babylon, with meditations on the theology and history of Israel, discussions of wisdom, and a direct address to residents of Jerusalem and the Diaspora. Some scholars propose that it was written during or shortly after the period of the Maccabees.

The Book of Baruch is sometimes referred to as 1 Baruch to distinguish it from 2 Baruch, 3 Baruch and 4 Baruch.

Although the earliest known manuscripts of Baruch are in Greek, linguistic features of the first parts of Baruch (1:1–3:8) have been proposed as indicating a translation from a Semitic language.

Although not in the Hebrew Bible, it is found in the Septuagint, in the Eritrean/Ethiopian Orthodox Bible, and also in Theodotion's Greek version. In 80 book Protestant Bibles, the Book of Baruch is a part of the Biblical apocrypha. Jerome excluded both the Book of Baruch and the Letter of Jeremiah from the Vulgate Bible, but both works were introduced into Latin Vulgate bibles sporadically from the 9th century onwards; and were incorporated into the Sixto-Clementine Vulgate edition. In the Vulgate it is grouped with the prophetical books which also include Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel, and the Twelve Minor Prophets. In the Vulgate, the King James Bible Apocrypha, and many other versions, the Letter of Jeremiah is appended to the end of the Book of Baruch as a sixth chapter; in the Septuagint and Orthodox Bibles chapter 6 is usually counted as a separate book, called the Letter or Epistle of Jeremiah.