Sometimes you have to get out of the pew to get a good view where you are spiritually and grow in your walk of faith. We become comfortable with “that ole time religion” of which I will admit is the way I have walked for years. This week’s blog is about exploring a world rich with writings that are not intended to demean or lessen the faith but to challenge and create a hunger for the gospel and those who lived it and wrote about it. In future blogs I intend to share with you books and commentaries that along with the Bible will increase your understanding and love of “The Word.”

I have often wondered how Jesus, the Son of the living God spent his childhood. I thought it odd that there were no writings about this early time in his life. How could such a person have passed through his childhood unnoticed? So I got out of the pew and looked for writings about this subject knowing full well I was on a slippery slope. Remember I am a layman and have no paper of higher education hanging on the wall but Mr. Gates has given me a world of information and knowledge right here at my desk. This week I recommend to you a great book. “THE LOST BOOKS OF THE BIBLE” These are actual texts that have been found and translated, passed down and finally put in book form. Below is a brief excerpt from the book.

“This is a collection of New Testament Apocrypha, including many works which were admired and read by the early Christians, but which were later excluded from the canonical Bible. It includes accounts of the young Jesus, particularly the Gospel of Mary and the Protevangelion, which provides additional folklore about the birth and youthful adventures of Jesus. Of note are the letters of Paul and Seneca, and the letters of Herod and Pilate, which are most likely a forgery, but add more depth to the question of the historicity of Jesus. There are also a number of non-canonical epistles, such as Laodiceans. Also worth a close read are the three books of the Shepherd of Hermas, which uses apocalyptic and symbolic imagery. This collection is an invaluable selection of portions of the New Testament which illustrates the fluid nature of the early Biblical canon, and provides access to all of the ‘spare parts.’–J.B. Hare, August 12, 2009.”

You can check it out on the internet and I assure you this is not a book to question your faith but rather to expand it. Next blog will look at the extraordinary promise of resurrection….ours.