The Missing Books of the Old Testament
The following books, which we find mentioned in the books of the present
Old Testament, have disappeared from it:
The Book of the Wars of the Lord:
This book is mentioned in Numbers 21:14 and has been discussed by us
earlier in this book. Henry and Scott’s commentary has this statement:
Presumably this book was written by Moses for the guidance of
Joshua and described the demarcation of the land of Moab.
The Book of Jasher:
This book is mentioned in Joshua 10:13. We have discussed it earlier. It
is also mentioned in II Samuel, 1:18.
(3-5) There were three books of the Prophet Solomon, the first contained one
thousand and five Psalms, the second described the history of the
creation, and the third consisted of three thousand Proverbs. We find this
last book mentioned in I Kings 140. Some of these Proverbs are still in
existence. Adam Clarke under his comments on I Kings 4:32 said:
The Proverbs currently attributed to Solomon, are nine hundred or
nine hundred and twenty-three, and if we accept the claim of some
scholars that the first nine chapters of the book are not from Solomon the
number is reduced to only about six hundred and fifty. Psalm 127 in
which the name of Solomon appears is not from Solomon, it being rightly
claimed by some scholars that it was written by the Prophet David for the
guidance of his son, Solomon.
He further said with regard to the history of creation:
Scholars are very much aggrieved at the disappearance of the history of
the world’s creation.
The Book of the Manner of the Kingdom:
This was written by Samuel as mentioned in I Samuel 10:25:
Then Samuel told the People the manner of the Kingdom, and wrote it
in a book and laid it up before the Lord.
The History of Samuel the Seer.
The History of the Prophet Nathan.
The Book of Gad the Seer.
All the above three books are mentioned in I Chronicles 141 Adam
Clarke remarked on page 1522 of Vol. 2 of his book that these books
The Book of Shemaiah, the Prophet
The Book of Iddo, the Seer:
Both the above books are mentioned in ll Chronicles 12:15 142
The prophecy of Ahijah.
The Visions of Iddo the Seer.
These two books are mentioned in II Chronicles 9:29 143 The book of
Nathan and Iddo are also mentioned in this verse. Adam Clarke said on
page 1539 of vol. 2 of his book:
All these books have become non-existent.
(14) The Book of Jehu the son of Hanani
This is mentioned in II Chronicles 20:34 144 Adam Clarke said on page
561 of vol. 2 of his book:
This book has been completely lost, though it existed in the time of
compilation of the Second Book of Kings.
(15) The Book of Isaiah the Prophet
This book consisted of complete accounts of Uzziah. It is mentioned in ll
Chronicles 26:22 145
(16) The Book of Visions of Isaiah:
This contained complete accounts of Hezekiah and is mentioned in II
Chronicles 32:32 146
(17) The Lamentation of Jeremiah:
This consisted of Jeremiah’s lamentation for Josiah that is described in II
Chronicles 35:25 147
(18) The Book of Chronicles:
This is mentioned in Nehemiah 12: 23 148. Adam Clarke said on page
1676 of volume 2 of his book:
This book is not included in the present books. This is another book
which does not exist today.
(19) The Book of Covenant of Moses:
We find it mentioned in Exodus 24:7 149
(20) The Book of the Acts of Solomon:
The mention of this book appears in I Kings, 11:14.
We already know that Josephus ascribed two more books to Ezekiel in
addition to his famous book. Josephus is a trusted name among the Christians.
This takes the total number of the missing books to twenty-two. The Protestants
have no way of refuting the existence of these books. Thomas Inglis said in his
book in Urdu entitled, Mira’atus Sidk (The Mirror of the Truth) printed in 1856.
There is unanimous agreement on the fact that the number of the books
that have been lost or have disappeared from the sacred books is not less
than twenty 150
The Third Answer
As a third answer to the false Christian claim regarding the witness of Christ
and his Apostles for the truth of the sacred books, we may point out that; even if
we acknowledge the presence of the current books during the lifetime of Christ
and that Christ did indeed witness to the truth of these books, this only confirms
the existence of these books at that time, without confirming the truth of their
attribution to their authors and without verifying the truth of each and every
passage contained by them. Even if Christ and his Apostles did report
something from these books it would not necessarily signify their absolute truth.
However, in the case of Jesus, it would clearly have shown that a particular
injunction of those books was from God, given that his statement could be
proved to be really his through an unbroken chain of reporters. This is not a
contention posited only by the Muslims, for the Protestants also have adopted this opinion. Paley, the great scholar of the Protestants observed in chapter 3 of
his book printed in London in 1850:
There is no doubt that our Saviour confirmed that the Pentateuch was the
Book of God. It is improbable that its origin and existence could be without
God. Especially because the Jews, who were expert in religious matters and
beginners in other matters like war and peace, did firmly adhere to
monotheism. Their concept of God and His attributes is remarkable
compared to other peoples who were committed to innumerable Gods. It is
also certain that our Saviour acknowledged the prophethood of the most of
the copiers of the Old Testament. It is the duty of all us Christians to observe
The claim that each and every verse of the Old Testament is true and
inspired, and that there is no need for investigation of their authors, invites
unnecessary difficulties and trouble. These books were commonly read by the
Jews of the time of our Saviour. They were believed in and acted upon by them,
and the Apostles used to turn to them for guidance. This attitude of the Jews
allows us to reach only one conclusion that the truth and divinity of a prophetic
statement is confirmed only when Christ specifically witnessed to its being from
God. Otherwise it only proves that these books were commonly acknowledged
in that period.
In this case our sacred books would be the best witness for the Jewish
Scriptures. It is, however, necessary to understand the nature of this witness. Its
nature is different from what I have sometimes described. Every incident has a
particular common cause and nature which provides strength for its proof, even
if it apparently looks to be different but, in fact, comes out to be the same when
all aspects are closely viewed. For example James said in his epistle 151
Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord.
We know that the truth of the book of Job has been a matter of great
controversy among Christian scholars. This witness of James confirms only the
fact that this book was present and acknowledged by the Jews. Similarly Paul
said in his second epistle to Timothy 152
Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so these also resist the
These two names are not found in the Old Testament and we do not know if
Paul reported them from one of the apocryphal books or knew of them through tradition. Had this event been written Paul would have reported it from the text
and would have not made himself the pivot of the truth of this event, to the
extent that the truth of his letter became dependent on the question of whether
Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses or not.
The object of my contention is not to show that there is no testimony
superior to that of Jannes and Jambres or Job regarding the history of the Jews. I
see this matter from another perspective. What I mean is that a particular verse
of the Old Testament being recorded by the evangelists does not prove it to be
so true as to distrust the arguments coming from external sources. It is not
correct to take it as a principle that every word of Jewish history is true. This
would make all their books unreliable. I must stress this point because Walter
and his disciples used to take shelter in the Jewish writings and then raised
objections against Christianity. Some of their objections are based on the fact
that they misinterpreted the meanings of the texts, while some of their
objections are simply founded on exaggeration. But the main cause of their
objections is the misconception that any witness of Christ and the ancient
teachers confirming the prophethood of Moses and other Prophets is a witness
to the truth of each and every verse of the Old Testament, and that it is
obligatory for the Christians to support everything written in the Old Testament.
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