Apocryphal vs. Deuterocanonical

I understand that the Coptic Church does accept the Deuterocanonical books as canon. However, there are some apocryphal books (which although not considered canon) which the Coptic church recognizes only parts of the writings. For example, the story of St. Thekla, the disciple of St. Paul is recorded in "Acts of Paul" which the church does not accept as canonical - but St. Thekla is recognized in the Synaxarium. 

I keep digging for literature on what books are accepted as spiritually beneficial, what books are considered heretical, and how and when was this all decided? 


  • I would look at the council of Carthage as a start
  • Well one thing to consider, the Synaxarium saints stories don't always come from the Bible. The actual story might of been accepted from the "Acts of Paul", but that doesn't need to be accepted as Canon for the saint to be canonized. 
  • The Biblical canon is just the things that human hands wrote that we know were inspired by the Holy Spirit concerning the Son. By nature, however, humans write down everything- it’s how we know the names of St. Dimas, St. Veronica, St. Longinus, and Gestas (the left-hand thief). The story of St. Thekla is true, but the source we got that from is not inspired by God for our salvation. The author of “The Acts of Paul” was writing for history- not by the inspiration of God. However, they still recorded a true story.
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