Everything About the Bible That You Never Had Time to Look Up was a spin-off of the research that I did for
Angel.  In the novel, there are many conversations about various aspects of the Bible, and I wanted to be very
sure of my facts.  So after accumulating more than 100 pages of notes for my own reference, I suddenly realized
that I had the beginnings of a whole new book, which would be unlike any I had ever seen before.  Therefore, while
Angel was making the rounds of agents and publishers, I turned my attention to an extensive investigation of
those rare manuscripts which are classified as apocryphal or pseudepigraphal.  The two most important sources
were: (1)
The Apocryphal New Testament by Montague Rhodes James, published by Oxford University in 1924,
and (2)
The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha, edited by James H. Charlesworth of Princeton University.  This is a
two volume set, which is part of the Anchor Bible series, published by Doubleday in 1983.  My bibliography,
however, lists 42 other primary sources.  I have included every extant manuscript which was ever considered for
inclusion in any version of the Bible.  But there is another whole category of ancient scrolls which I deliberately
excluded: those are the Gnostic Gospels.  These were works of theological literature which the Council of Nicea
rejected as so heretical that most copies were destroyed.  But in 1945 a large cache of these forbidden
manuscripts were found in the desert, near the Egyptian city of Nag Hammadi.  It wasn't until 1990, however, that
English translations of the entire library were made widely available by the Harper Collins Publishing Co.  Even so,
the Gnostic literature of this library is so extensive that even a summary would require an entire book in itself.

In 1998 I finished
Everything About the Bible... and began sending it out to agents and publishers.  But in the
meantime, there was a technological revolution in the publishing industry!  It is called Print on Demand, or POD
publishing.  That means a complete manuscript can be typeset on a PC, burned onto a CD-ROM, and then
downloaded into a super photocopy machine which is able to produce a professionally bound copy of the book
within minutes.  The quality is indistinguishable from a book printed by the old offset press method with hand
stitched binding.  The cost per copy of a POD book is only a few cents higher than one produced by offset printing
in a 1,000 copy run.  But, of course, with POD printing, you are not stuck with paying for, and storing, 1,000 copies
that you may not be able to sell.  This is such a radical improvement in efficiency that practically all book
publishers are rapidly converting to it, and the venerable New York imprints are retooling, laying off personnel, and
merging with media conglomerates.  That means about half a dozen megacorps now control most of what
Americans see, hear, or read.  In 2002 I read a book by a former New York acquisitions editor, called
The End of
He said that since the takeover by multimedia giants, publishers were no longer interested in quality;
they were only interested in celebrity driven books that were guaranteed to sell a zillion copies, and that could be
marketed with product tie-ins.  Any author with something original to say now had no choice except to publish it
himself.  But with POD technology that's no longer a problem, since investment is minimal, and the artist has
complete control over all aspects of the book.  That's when I decided to publish with Xlibris.

In counterbalance to the domination of giant corporations, however, artists now have the means to fight back.  
There is a growing democratization throughout the arts.  It happened in the motion picture industry with the
collapse of the studio system and the rise of independent producers, and more recently with the availability of  
digital video cameras and desktop editing.  In journalism it has happened with the advent of the blogosphere.  In
music it  happened when the synthesizer eliminated the need for expensive orchestras and rehearsal time, as well
as the ability of musicians to burn their own CDs and sell them over the Internet.  For audiophiles, there is now
Internet radio and podcasting.  In other words, like it or not, all artists are once again freelancers competing for
market share.  And that's probably for the best.
Back Flap
Front Flap

For many people, the Bible is an
obsession, to be worshipped, quoted,
and argued about endlessly.  But
probably not one person in a thousand
has actually read all the books in it or
knows anything about how they came
into existence.  Furthermore, many
extra biblical books are very hard to
find, and the English translations were
often made by scholars several cen-
turies ago, using impenetrably archaic
language.  Now all the hard work has
been done for you in this easy to read
summary. Now you can be a biblical
expert -- the easy way!

With a Ph.D. in Mass Communications
from the University of Southern California
and a teaching career spanning thirty
years, Professor Timmons has conducted
courses in virtually every aspect of
Speech, Drama, Radio-TV-Film, Journal-
ism, and Advertising.  As head of the
Motion Picture Department at Los Angeles
Valley College in the North Hollywood area
for 22 years he wrote two textbooks and
produced hundreds of educational films.  
Since 1990 he has been listed in Who's
Who in America and, following his retire-
ment in 1992, he has devoted his time to
scholarly writing and research.
                                 Product Description:

This book summarizes the 197 extant documents which make up, or once made up,
or were highly influential in the development of, 51 major versions of the Judeo-
Christian Bible.  Many scriptures are very rare, and English translations were often
made several centuries ago, using impenetrably archaic language.  Now these texts
are made both accessible and even entertaining.

In addition to the summaries, there are statements of scholarly consensus regarding
authorship, dates of composition and redaction, name changes, original language
and provenance.  Footnotes often point out historical inaccuracies, disputes about
translation, or cross-reference different versions of the same story.

Finally, the books are presented in chronological order, as well as can be deter-
mined, so readers can see the gradual development of themes, literary styles, and
religious concepts.

The book is written in an
objective, scholarly style, which should make it
acceptable to believers and non-believers alike.


Heretofore it has required years of study, access to many rare books, and superhuman effort to cut through
the nearly impenetrable prose of these ancient books.

Now all the hard work has been done for you in this easy to read summary.

The project began during the course of collecting background material for a novel about the origins of
Christianity – when it soon became apparent that reliable information was very scarce.  Perhaps half the
books that shaped Western concepts of religion have ceased to exist.  Many were destroyed as heretical
after the early ecumenical councils closed the biblical canon in the fourth century, others have simply turned
to dust.  The oldest
biblical manuscripts in existence are the Dead Sea Scrolls, which go back to
approximately 100 B.C.E.  And the oldest Christian manuscripts are those found in the Gnostic library of Nag
Hammadi, in Egypt – written in the fourth century C.E.  But they don’t contain any of the canonical books.

All other information comes to us via copies of copies.  Before invention of the printing press in 1450, all
replication was by hand – which allowed countless variations to creep into texts.  Especially after translation
into multiple languages, many stories evolved into a wide spectrum of versions.  Which is the “true” version?  
It is impossible to say.

The aim of this volume is to be concise rather than exhaustive – thus making available to general readers the
main sources of Judeo-Christian thought, without the distraction of scholarly disputes.  For the benefit of
those who may question the interpretation of certain documents, or who wish more information about original
sources, a selected bibliography is included.

It should be remembered that the following books were written by very primitive people who were trying to
make sense of the world with the only information they had.  But even in those days, most of these authors
were not considered educated by their Greek and Roman contemporaries.  Moreover, the Jewish and
Christian leaders who created the biblical canon rejected the majority of these documents as products of
overheated imagination.  So there are times when descriptions necessarily become a bit whimsical.  Always,
however, the goal has been to cover the author’s main points while eliminating only the extraneous.

Even though many of these books did not end up in any authorized Bible, they have nevertheless been
extremely influential in the evolution of religious traditions.  To this day, sermons, theological doctrines, and
Sunday school lessons are still based on these extra-canonical sources:  Where did medieval artists get the
idea for all those paintings about the “Assumption of the Virgin”?  There’s nothing in the Bible about any
such event.  How do Catholics justify their doctrine that Mary remained a virgin all her life even though the
Bible says Jesus had several brothers and sisters?  Where did Dante Alighieri get his concepts about the
levels of hell?  Where did John Milton get the plot for his story about Lucifer the fallen angel?

The following books are where those ideas, and a myriad others, all came from.

Dr. W. Milton Timmons
                                         TABLE OF CONTENTS

History of the Bible -  
Major Versions of the Judeo-Christian Bible -

                                    Books of the Old Testament

Genesis -
Exodus -
Leviticus -
Numbers -
Deuteronomy -
Joshua -
Judges -
Ruth -
First Samuel -
Second Samuel -
First Kings -
Second Kings -
First Chronicles -
Second Chronicles -
Ezra -
Nehemiah -
Esther -
Job -
Psalms -
Proverbs -
Ecclesiastes -
Song of Solomon -
Isaiah -
Jeremiah -
Lamentations -
Ezekiel -
Daniel -
Hosea -
Joel -
Amos -
Obadiah -
Jonah -
Micah -
Nahum -
Habakkuk -
Zephaniah -
Haggai -
Zechariah -
Malachi –

                       Apocryphal Jewish Books In Catholic Bibles

Book of Tobias -
Book of Judith -
Additions to Esther -
First Book of Maccabees -
Second Book of Maccabees -
Book of Wisdom -
Ecclesiasticus -
Prophecy of Baruch -
Letter of Jeremiah -
Additions to Daniel -
Susanna -
Baal -
The Dragon -

           Apocryphal Jewish Books In Eastern Orthodox Bibles

Second Esdras -
Questions of Ezra -
Prayer of Manasseh -

                Apocryphal Books In Ethiopian Orthodox Bibles

Book of Jubilees -
Martyrdom and Ascension of Isaiah -
Shepherd of Hermas -
Greek Apocalypse of Ezra -
First Enoch -
Apocalypse of Abraham -
Testament of Abraham -
Testament of Moses -
Second Baruch -
Third Baruch -
Fourth Baruch -
Sibylline Oracles -
Lives of the Prophets -

            Pseudepigrapha and Other Judeo-Christian Literature
                                          from the Biblical Era

Ahiqar -
Letter of Aristeas -
Ezekiel the Tragedian -
Aristobulus -
Demetrius the Chronographer -
Eupolemus -
Pseudo-Eupolemus -
Artapanus -
Joseph and Aseneth -
Third Book of Maccabees -
Psalms of Solomon -
Testament of Job -
Treatise of Shem -
Pseudo-Phocylides -
Apocalypse of Zephaniah -
Second Enoch -
Third Enoch -
Apocryphon of Ezekiel -
Pseudo-Philo -
Fourth Maccabees -
Life of Adam and Eve -
Jannes and Jambres -
The Florilegium -
Apocalypse of Adam -
Apocalypse of Elijah -
Testament of Isaac -
Testament of Jacob -
Testament of Solomon -
Odes of Solomon -
Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs -
Testament of Adam -
Apocalypse of Sedrach -
History of the Rechabites -
Ladder of Jacob -
Apocalypse of Daniel -

                       Christian Apocrypha of the Pre-Nicean Era

Gospel According to the Hebrews -
Gospel of the Ebionites -
Gospel According to the Egyptians -
Gospel of Philip -
Gospel of Matthias -
Gospel of Peter -
Preaching of Peter -
Other References -
Gospel of James -
Gospel of Thomas -
Pistis Sophia Text -
Uncertain text -
Arabic text -
Gospel of Thomas II -
Gospel of Peter II -
Gospel of Bartholomew -
Acts of Pilate -
Acts of Pilate II -
Latin text A -
Greek text -
Latin text B -
Coptic Narratives of the Ministry and the Passion -
Acts of John -
Acts of Paul -
Acts of Peter -
Acts of Andrew -
Acts of Thomas -
Acts of Philip -
Recension A -
Recension B -
Correspondence of Paul and Seneca -
Epistle of the Apostles -
Apocalypse of Peter -

 Christian Documents Accepted as Canonical by Council of Nicea

Paul’s Letter to the Galatians -
Paul’s First Letter to the Thessalonians -
Paul’s Letter to the Philippians -
Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians -
Paul’s Second Letter to the Corinthians -
Paul’s Letter to the Romans -
Paul’s Letter to Philemon -
Paul’s “Second” Letter to Timothy -
Paul’s “First” Letter to Timothy -
Paul’s Letter to the Colossians -
Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians -
Paul’s Second Letter to the Thessalonians -
Paul’s Letter to Titus -
Anonymous Letter to the Hebrews -
Gospel of Mark -
Gospel of Matthew -
Gospel of Luke -
Acts of the Apostles -
Book of Revelation -
Letter of James -
Letter of Jude -
First Letter of Peter -
Second Letter of Peter -
Gospel of John -
First Letter of John -
Second Letter of John -
Third Letter of John –

                      Christian Apocrypha of the Post-Nicean Era

Gospel of Thomas -
Greek Text A -
Greek Text B -
Latin Text -
Gospel of Matthew II -
Gospel of the Birth of Mary -
Gospel of the Infancy -
Arabic Text -
Armenian Text -
History of Joseph the Carpenter -
Acts of Pilate (Greek Recension) -
Letter of Pilate to Tiberius -
Report of Pilate to Caesar -
Paradosis of Pilate -
Letter of Pilate to Herod -
Letter of Herod to Pilate -
Letter of Tiberius to Pilate -
Death of Pilate -
Healing of Tiberius -
Story of Joseph of Arimathaea -
Resurrection of Christ -
Book of St. John the Evangelist -
Assumption of the Virgin -
Discourse of St. John the Divine -
The Assumption, by Melito -
The Assumption, by Joseph of Arimathaea -
Acts of Andrew and Matthias (or Matthew) -
Acts of Peter and Andrew -
Martyrdom of Matthew -
Apostolic Acts of Abdias -
James the Great -
Book VII of St. Matthew -
Simon and Jude -
Book VIII of St. Bartholomew -
Book X of St. Philip -
Variations on the Acts of Peter and Paul -
Acts of Andrew and Paul -
Coptic Recension -
Correspondence Between Abgarus and Christ -
Apocalypse of Paul -
Apocalypse of Thomas -
Apocalypse of the Virgin -
Revelation of Stephen -


Nicene Creed -
Bibliography -
Note: It has been suggested by several fans that this book would
be an ideal text for a college or high school course in biblical
literature. If any teacher would be interested in adopting it for such
purposes, please contact me and I will be happy to supply a study
guide and lesson plan.
Watch TV Interview With  
    Milt About This Book