Wikipedia says the Book of Jubilees was suppressed in 4th century CE:

The Book of Jubilees (Hebrew: ספר היובלים Sepher hayYobelim), sometimes called Lesser Genesis (Leptogenesis), is an ancient Jewish religious work of 50 chapters, considered one of the pseudepigrapha by Protestant, Roman Catholic, and Eastern Orthodox Churches.1 Jubilees is considered canonical by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church as well as Jews in Ethiopia, where it is known as the Book of Division (Ge'ez: Mets'hafe Kufale).

It was well known to Early Christians, as evidenced by the writings of Epiphanius, Justin Martyr, Origen, Diodorus of Tarsus, Isidore of Alexandria, Isidore of Seville, Eutychius of Alexandria, John Malalas, George Syncellus, and George Kedrenos. It was so thoroughly suppressed in the 4th century that no complete Hebrew, Greek or Latin version has survived. There is conjecture among western biblical scholars that Jubilees may be a rework of material found in the canonical books of Genesis and Exodus.

My question is:

Do we know who suppressed this book and why?

And how do we know it was intentionally suppressed as opposed to getting lost like so much ancient literature?

  • 1
    Dear Downvoter, please tell me your reasons... Jun 19 '13 at 11:03
  • 12
    clearly, a member of the same consipiracy who suppressed the book.
    – DVK
    Jun 19 '13 at 18:19
  • 1
    @DVK Oh my, this is getting scary... Jun 19 '13 at 18:24
  • There is no shortage of pseudepigrapha, and having to constantly copy them all (since writing materials decay quite rapidly over time) would have been quite a monumental undertaking, which is why determining canonical lists was very important in a time when resources were notoriously scarce.
    – Lucian
    Jul 5 '19 at 3:18

The rabbis of the first centuries A.C. had mixed opinions regarding apocryphical books (״ספרים חיצוניים״). Though some maintained that these books were holy (though not to be read by laymen), others claimed that the reading of these books was enough to condemn one as a heretic.

The Book of Jubilees may have been especially suppressed as it espoused a solar based calendar, in contrast to the dominant view supported by the Pharisees, according to which the months are lunar based.

  • 2
    One other interesting factoid: The Book of Jubilees forbids lying with one's wife on the Sabbath, while rabbinical sources suggest scholars should refrain from intercourse on all days but the Sabbath.
    – nbubis
    Jan 28 '14 at 1:45

According to Donald H. Akenson (p. 146), it was suppressed by the later Rabbis.

  • 1
    I have a theory (read: hypothesis) that Hebrew scripture canonical disputes are largely the result of a disparity between the Essenes (and similar communities, such as the Qumran community if they weren't Essenes) and other Jews. The early Christian communities were heavily influenced by the Essenes (and related communities), so they favored books such as Jubilees and Enoch. Later, when many books were called into question by the proliferation of Gnostic works and Christian pseudepigrapha, the Christian community at large thought they would be more well founded... Aug 28 '13 at 14:25
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    (cont.)...if they sided with their Jewish contemporaries in regards to the Hebrew scriptures. Those Jews had inherited their ancestors' views of the texts favored by the Essenes (that they should be rejected). Aug 28 '13 at 14:27
  • Well, it is an interesting question why it falls out of favour in both communities at about the same time... Oct 21 '13 at 6:08

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