BANNED FROM THE BIBLE
The Stories That Were Deleted From Biblical History
Thursday, December 25 at 9 pm ET/PT on The History Channel
NEW YORK, Dec. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- When Jesus was a boy, did he kill
another child? Was Mary Magdalene a prostitute -- or an apostle? Did Cain
commit incest? Will there be an apocalypse or is this God's trick to scare us?
The answers to these questions aren't found in the Bible as we know it, but
they exist in scriptures banned when powerful leaders deemed them unacceptable
for reasons both political and religious. BANNED FROM THE BIBLE reveals some
of these alternative tales and examines why they were "too hot for
Christianity." The two-hour world premiere BANNED FROM THE BIBLE airs on
Christmas, Thursday, December 25 at 9 pm ET/PT.
The Life of Adam and Eve, The Book of Enoch, The Book of Jubilees, The
Infancy Gospel of Thomas, The Gospel of Mary, The Apocalypse of Peter...these
are just a few of the books that were left out of the Bible. The reasons why
they were excluded provide astonishing insight into the concerns of church
leaders and scholars responsible for spreading the faith an illuminating look
at early Christian and religious history.
One hundred and fifty years after the birth of Jesus, a man named Marcion
decided that a Christian Bible was needed to replace the Hebrew Bible. Church
leaders opposed Marcion's banning of the Hebrew books, but they did agree that
Christians should have a Bible to call their own. After Constantine the Great
converted to Christianity in the 4th century, a serious effort was made to
compile a Christian Bible, one that included both the Hebrew scriptures (the
40 years before a final list of New Testament books was officially canonized
by the church. Many of the most popular were excluded. Upon examination today,
many of these writings attempt to resolve inconsistencies and questions raised
from reading the Bible.
BANNED FROM THE BIBLE examines the stories in some of these books, how
they were rediscovered and what they might mean to us today. Included are:
* The Life of Adam and Eve: A more detailed story of creation than what
is found in Genesis, this book includes jealous angels, a more devious
serpent, and more information about Eve's fall from grace from her
point of view.
* The Book of Jubilees: This obscure Hebrew text offers an answer to a
question that has vexed Christians for centuries -- if Adam and Eve
only had sons, and if no other humans existed, who gave birth to
humanity? This text reveals that Adam and Eve had nine children and
that Cain's younger sister Awan became his wife. The idea that humanity
was born of incest would have been radical -- and heretical.
* The Book of Enoch: This scripture reads like a modern day action film,
telling of fallen angels, bloodthirsty giants, an earth that had become
home to an increasingly flawed humanity and a divine judgment to be
rendered though denied a place in most Western Bibles; it has been used
for centuries by Ethiopian Christians. Large portions of this book were
found as part of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
* The Infancy Gospel of Thomas: The only book that deals with young
Jesus, it indicates that Jesus was a strong-willed child who one
historian describes as "Dennis the Menace as God." The book reveals
that at age five, Jesus may have killed a boy by pushing push him off a
roof and then resurrected him. Perhaps too disturbing for inclusion in
the Bible, this book seems to contain traditions, also known to the
* The Protovangelion of James: This book offers details of the life of
the Virgin Mary, her parents, her birth and her youth, stories not
found in the New Testament Gospels but was beloved by many early
* The Gospel of Mary: This Gnostic Text reveals that Mary Magdalene may
have been an apostle, perhaps even a leading apostle, not a prostitute.
While some texts in the Bible seem to deny women a voice in the
Christian community, this texts helps spark the debate about the role
of women in the church.
* The Gospel of Nicodemus: This is the story of Jesus's trial and
execution and his descent into hell. According to this gospel the
Savior asserts his power over Satan by freeing patriarchs such as Adam,
Isaiah and Abraham from Hell.
* The Apocalypse of Peter: Peter's apocalypse suggests that there is a
way out of punishment for evildoers and implies that the threat of the
apocalypse is a way for God to scare people into living a moral life,
and committing fewer sins.
These books are just a sampling of the hundreds that were never included
in the Holy Bible. Perhaps there are more to be found. Whether one believes
these alternative stories or not, they do provide an interesting perspective
of the religious culture and propensities of the time.
BANNED FROM THE BIBLE features commentary from Bible experts and
historians including Marvin Meyer, PhD, Professor of Bible and Christian
Studies, Chapman University; Daniel Smith-Christopher, Ph.D, Professor of
Religious Studies, Bluffton College; Anthea Butler, Ph.D, Department of
Theological Studies Loyola Marymount University; and John Dominic Crossan,
Ph.D, Professor Emeritus, DePaul University.
Margaret Kim is the executive producer of BANNED FROM THE BIBLE for The
History Channel. BANNED FROM THE BIBLE was produced for The History Channel by
Now reaching 86 million Nielsen subscribers, The History Channel,(R)
"Where the Past Comes Alive,(R)" brings history to life in a powerful manner
and provides an inviting place where people experience history personally and
connect their own lives to the great lives and events of the past. The History
Channel received the prestigious Governor's award from the Academy of
Television Arts & Sciences for the network's "Save Our History(R)" campaign
dedicated to historic preservation and history education. The History Channel
web site is located at http://www.HistoryChannel.com.
The books didn't suit the perceptions of that period.
Yes, definitely. The Nazi Party in Germany banned certain books of non-fiction because their content was contrary to the teachings of the Party. Karl Marx's books were among them as they are about Communism. I believe Communist Russia also banned books, for example, the Holy Bible. I think the Bible was banned in Nazi Germany also.
The Bible is not banned in China.
The bible is banned in Saudi Arabia and was banned in the comunist world.
The duration of Banned from the Bible is 3.33 hours.
There are still many banned books even today. Some banned books have become unbanned.
Liberia has not banned the bible as the leader was a Charles Taylor.
Banned from the Bible was created on 2003-12-25.
Most public libraries support banned books.
The duration of Banned from the Bible II is 1.67 hours.
Should the Bible Be Banned was created in 1988-04.