LXX Hoax EXPOSED
Did Jesus and the apostles quote from the Septuagint? NO, unequivocally, absolutely NO. The Septuagint is a great HOAX. In the words of Dr. Samuel Gipp - The LXX is nothing more than a figment of someone’s imagination. The Septuagint represents PERFECTION in FRAUD, obviously intended to deceive, and cause doubt regarding the INTEGRITY of the Word of God. Brethren, those who would be truly wise, will know that God DID KEEP HIS PROMISE of Psalm 12:6-7, and learn to read, think, speak and DO the KING’s English as God provided in the KJV Holy Bible.
There are absolutely NO manuscripts pre-dating the third century A.D. to validate the claim that Jesus or Paul quoted a Greek Old Testament.
Quotations by Jesus or Paul in new versions’ New Testaments may match readings in the so-called Septuagint, because new versions are from the exact same corrupt fourth and fifth century A.D. Eusebius/Origen manuscripts which underlie the document sold today and called the Septuagint.
These manuscripts are Alexandrinus, Vaticanus, and Sinaiticus.
According to the colophon on the end of Sinaiticus, it came from Origen’s Hexapla. The others likely did also. Even church historians of questionable character and faith like Jerome, Hort, and Carson, agree that this is probably true.
Origen wrote his Hexapla two hundred years after the life of Christ and the apostles. Yes, the source is at least 200 years AFTER Christ! NIV New Testament and Old Testament quotes may match occasionally because they were both penned by the same hand, Eusebius/Origen. Origen rewrote both Old and New Testament to suit his antichrist and strange Gnostic leanings. New versions take the Sinaiticus, Vaticanus, and Alexandrinus manuscripts, which are in fact, Origen’s Hexapla, and change the traditional Masoretic Old Testament text to match these. Origen’s Hexapla is a very unsafe source to use to change the historic Old Testament. The preface of the Septuagint marketed today points out that the stories surrounding the B.C. (before Christ) creation of the Septuagint (LXX) and the existence of a Greek Old Testament are based on FABLES.
ALL of the Septuagint manuscripts cited in its concordance were written after A.D. 200 and represent Origen’s Hexapla. The Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics elaborates, calling "the letter of the pseudo- Aristeas, a manifest forgery and the fragments of Aristobulus highly suspect." It also points out many of the LXX’s Gnostic and antichrist heretical readings.
The fable of the Septuagint arose from the counterfeit and obvious hoax letter intended to deceive, of pseudo-Aristeas. That hoax and perfect deception said that seventy-two scholars were called, around 250 B.C., by Ptolemy, king of Egypt, to create a Greek Old Testament. This Egyptian ruler supposedly asked them a number of questions related to pagan philosophy and pagan theology. If they could answer these questions, they could be on the Septuagint "committee." The fable further states that six Jews from each of the twelve tribes were involved. The word Septuagint means seventy, however, not seventy-two.
The easily verifiable HOAX of the letter of pseudo-Aristeas proves that the Septuagint (LXX) cannot be the word of God for several reasons:
1. Only the tribe of Levi was permitted by God to write the scriptures (1 Chron. 16:4).
2. Any Jew living in or returning to Egypt was in direct disobedience to God’s command in Deuteronomy 17:16. "But he shall not... cause the people to return to Egypt... forasmuch as the LORD hath said unto you, Ye shall henceforth return no more that way."
3. It contains apocryphal books such as Tobit, The Prayer of Manasses, 2 Esdras, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, 1 and 2 Maccabees; there are also additions to Esther and Daniel. SOME OF WHICH HAD NOT YET BEEN WRITTEN AT THE TIME OF ARISTEAS. Jesus never quoted the Apocrypha and the Jews rejected it also. (Corrupt manuscripts followed by the NIV and NASB contain these false books within the Old Testament text itself!)
4. Origen’s six-column Old Testament, the Hexapla, parallels O.T. versions by Theodotian, Symmachus, and Aquilla. All three were Gnostic occultists.
5. The Septuagint can be traced no farther back in time than to its obvious source of Eusebius and Origen’s Hexapala.
The Stewarton Bible School of Scotland says the following about the
The Septuagint is an ancient Greek translation of the Old Testament. It is not inspired. Tradition has it that the Septuagint (known also as the LXX because 70 scribes were involved in its production) was written some 250 years before the Christian era. But this is not the case. WAS THERE A PRE-CHRISTIAN SEPTUAGINT? In his book Forever Settled (published by The Bible For Today: 900 Park Avenue, Collingswood. N.J. 08108 USA) Jack Moorman writes that "Paul Kahle ( a famous O.T. scholar) who has done extensive work in the Septuagint does not believe that there was one original old Greek version and that consequently the manuscripts of the Septuagint (so-called) cannot be traced back to one archtype...
Peter Ruckman (in the Christian's handbook of Manuscript Evidence) has taken a similar position. His arguments can be summarized as follows:
The letter of Aristeas is mere fabrication (Kahle calls it propaganda), and there is no historical evidence that a group of scholars translated the O.T. into Greek between 250 - 150 B.C.
The research of Paul Kahle shows that there was no pre-Christian LXX. one has produced a Greek copy of the Old Testament written before 300 A.D.
In fact, the Septuagint "quotes" from the New Testament and not vice versa, i.e. in the matter of N.T. - O.T. quotation, the later formulators of the Greek O.T. made it conform with the New Testament Text."
PROBLEM TEXTS - In his masterful book Problem Texts (published by Pensecola Bible Institute Press, P.O. Box 7135, Pensecola, Florida 32504. USA) Peter S Ruckman Ph.D. writes of the Septuagint in Appendix Two, "I have a copy of the notorious Septuagint on my desk (Zondervan Publishing Co.1970, from Samuel Baxter & Sons, London). In the Introduction, the party line of the Alexandrian Cult is laid out as neatly as a tiled floor. Our writer says 'THE FACT' may be regarded as 'CERTAIN'
Ruckman then lists the 4 Greek manuscripts from which the Septaugint came. Brief details include:
A- "Alexandrinus:" written more than 300 years after the completion of the New Testament. It omits Genesis 14:14-17; 15:1-6, 16-19, 16:6-10, Leviticus 6:19-23, 1 Samuel 12:17-14:9, 1 Kings 3-6 and Psalms 69:19-79:10.
Aleph-"Sinaiticus:" written more than 200 years after the completion of the New Testament. It omits Genesis 23:19-24:46, Numbers 5:27-7:20, 1 Chronicles 9:27-19:17, all of Exodus, Joshua, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings, Hosea, Amos, Micah, Ezekiel, Daniel and Judges. It contains New Testament Apocrypha.
C- "Codes Ephraemi:" written more than 300 years after the completion of the New Testament. It omits Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings and all of the major and minor prophets!
B -"Vaticanus:" It omits all off Genesis 1:1 - 46:28, all of Psalms 105:26-137:6, and parts of 1 Samuel, I Kings and Nehemiah. It contains the Apocrpha books of the Old Testament.
"Those interested in further damaging evidence will observe that every papyrus manuscript found with any part of the Old Testament in it was written after the resurrection, with the exception of one scrap containing less than six chapters of Deuteronomy on it.
The "Septuagint" papyri (we have listed all 23 of them with all that they contain and the dates they were written in The Christian's Handbook of
"The mythological LXX or Septuagint is the most persistent spook to haunt orthodox Christianity since the myth that Christ was born in a cave. The theory is based on abstract speculation of the wildest sort without one piece of reliable documented evidence of ANY kind that there was ever on this earth one single copy of an OLD Testament in GREEK before the heading up of the school at Alexandria by Origen, one hundred years after the entire New Testament was complete, yet to this day there exists on every campus of every fundamental school in the United States the nebulous ghost of this non-existent spook."
If the reader is interested in further studying this issue of Bible Versions and how that the King James Version is the infallible Word of God, then you simply must buy Ruckman's book Problem Texts [THE "ERRORS" IN THE KING JAMES BIBLE]. Never in all my days have I read such hard-hitting facts in favour of the Authorized Version. But be warned, Ruckman's style is not for the faint-hearted, especially if they are afraid of the facts!
If the reader desires more in depth information concerning Bible issues, manuscript evidence, and the integrity of the King James Version, the following books are recommended.
1. David Otis Fuller, WHICH BIBLE.
2. Edward F. Hills, THE KING JAMES VERSION DEFENDED.
3. Edward F. Hills, BELIEVING BIBLE STUDY.
4. G. A. Riplinger, NEW AGE BIBLE VERSIONS.
5. William P. Grady, FINAL AUTHORITY.
6. Sam Gipp, THE ANSWER BOOK.
7. Sam Gipp, AN UNDERSTANDABLE HISTORY OF THE BIBLE.
8. Barry Burton, LET'S WEIGH THE EVIDENCE.
9. Jasper J. Ray, GOD WROTE ONLY ONE BIBLE.
10. E. L. Bynum, KING JAMES FANS.
11. Peter S. Ruckman, THE CHRISTIAN'S HANDBOOK OF MANUSCRIPT EVIDENCE.
12. Peter S. Ruckman, THE CHRISTIAN'S HANDBOOK OF BIBLICAL SCHOLARSHIP.
13. Peter S. Ruckman, PASTORAL EPISTLES.
14. John Burgon, THE TRADITIONAL TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT.
15. John Burgon, THE LAST TWELVE VERSES OF MARK.
16. John Burgon, THE REVISION REVISED.
17. Alexander McClure, TRANSLATORS REVISITED.
18. Gustavus S. Paine, THE MEN BEHIND THE KING JAMES VERSION.
19. Herbert Evans, DEAR DR. JOHN, WHERE IS MY BIBLE?
20. Bruce D. Cummons, THE FOUNDATION AND AUTHORITY OF THE WORD OF GOD.
21. Perry F. Rockwood, GOD'S INSPIRED, PRESERVED BIBLE.
Separating the Holy from the Profane
He hath made us kings and priests unto God. As far as the priestly
duty of separating the Holy from the profane, what could be a more
important priestly duty for all of us, than separating the Holy
Bible from the Profane Bibles? God promised to preserve His word and
even purify it SEVEN times. Therefore FAITHFUL humble believers KNOW
there must be a Holy Bible, because God keeps His promises.
Which "Bible" is the one in which "EVERY WORD" can be claimed to be
the very HOLY word which God promised to preserve and purify seven
times? The Greek? There are 5250 Greek portions of manuscripts? The
Majority Text? Which one? The Textus Receptus? Which one? The
Majority Text and Textus Receptus are reasonably "accurate" and are
in very close agreement, but not identical. The Most "reliable" are
the Testus Receptus texts. They are what the King James was
translated from, but even they are not absolute. There are at least
six Textus Receptus texts Erasmus, Stephanus, Elzevir, Colineaus,
Beza, Scrivener. There are several editions of each, about two dozen
total. They are close, but not identical.
One with true and honest credentials, who paid an almost
unimaginably great price to tell the truth on the subject, was also
the Co-Founder and Chief-Editor of the New American Standard Bible.
Dr. Frank Logsdon is a greater bible language scholar and of much
higher proven integrity than anyone we are likely to encounter who
would be presuming to impress us with their bible language
scholarship. Here is what Dr. Frank Logsdon said, and consider what
effect this statement has on his royalty payments from the sales of
the NASB, of which he was Co-Founder and Chief Editor.
"You can say the Authorized Version, KJV, is absolutely correct. How
correct? 100%correct!. I believe the Spirit of God led the
translators of the Authorized Version. If you must stand against
everyone else, stand." - Dr. Frank Logsdon, Co-founder NASB
The Septuagint (LXX) was almost certainly written well over a
century AFTER the completion of the New Testament. That statement is
sometimes a great shock to those in heavy bondage to the VANITY
demon. That vanity can even make them so stupid they can not even
see what is wrong with the very idea of different bibles. Sad but
Most faithless, unsaved, modern, seminary professors, who strive to
destroy the faith of incoming would-be preacher boys in training,
are nearly unanimous that LXX was written in 200 B.C. This is no
more true than many of their other fables. There is NO FACTUAL
reason or credible EVIDENCE for believing this date. These same
teachers will just as nearly unanimously agree or concede that the
descriptions that we have for the compilation of the LXX are
mythological. The LXX text evidence indicates the LXX to be a
product of Origen and company, from his infamous school of heretics
and cultists in Alexandria, Egypt.
Who was Origen? Origen attempted to synthesize Christian scriptural
interpretation and belief with Greek philosophy, especially
Neoplatonism and Stoicism. He developed the idea of Christ as the
Logos, or Incarnate Word, who is with the Father from eternity, but
he taught also that the Son is subordinate to the Father in power
and dignity. Origen's Jesus was sort of a lower level or second
class God. Brethren, this is Arian Heresy, classic Synagogue of
Satan theology, as well as antinomian. Origen taught that souls pre-
existed, and that they are engaged in a process, the outcome of
which will be such that even the Devil will be saved. That
particular antinomian heresy is often credited to Origen.
Origen of Alexandria, (185-254 AD), ranks very high on history's all
time list of great HERETICS. Origen is right up there with Eusebius.
So when you ever hear someone who would dare to appeal to the work
of either Origen, or Eusebius, in a positive way, you better watch
out for some lies and/or heresy coming at you. Origen was antinomian
to the bone. Small wonder why he is held in high esteem by the final
batch of antinomian heretics. The study is shallow indeed to
conclude that Origen rivals Eusebius as one of the worst heretics in
Most who would do a little personal study on the TRUE date and
origin of the LXX would pin that tail on Origen and his Alexandrian
heretic and cultist buddies. That is at least 200 AD and NOT BC.
There should be little or no doubt that the LXX was put together by
Origen and his friends from the Alexandrian cult, most likely AFTER
the death of Origen. The earliest possible date for the Septuagent
would be the time of Origen at the very earliest.
According to John Hinton, one of very few, and quite possibly the
only godly man of faith to get a Phd in bible languages from Harvard
in the last 20 years, said, "the text of Origen's Hexapla, from
which the alleged LXX was copied, was itself not copied until half a
century after Origen's death, so it is unlikely that it is an
accurate copy of Origen's text, let alone one from 200 B.C..
Nevertheless, for some strange reason the judgment of seminary
theologians is suspended on the issue of the date of the LXX. "
They just got there BC and AD mixed up, which is very handy for
mixing up lots of other stuff.
Teno Gropi has some good insight as well on Origen. Adamantius was
the name of Origen's heretical allegorical school that was located
in Alexandria, Egypt. The principle Alexandrian texts are spurious
at best, Satanic perversions at worst. Vaticanus was found stuffed
in the Vatican library where it had been for 1500 years. Even the
old Catholics had rejected that text. That was part of the reason it
was found to be in such condition because of lack of use. It had
been quite obviously rejected by its custodians, as clearly seen
from many of the comments written on it.
Sinaiticus was also found in a trash can, where it belonged. Only
about 50 of the 5250 ancient Greek Text portions of ancient
manuscripts are Alexandrian. Yes, brethren, catch this FACT, less
than one percent (1%) of all existing ancient Greek texts are
Alexandrian. The Alexandrian texts, in just the gospels, DISAGREE
within themselves almost 3000 times. If you want another word for
corrupt manuscripts, just say Alexandrian. One is missing
Revelation, both are missing large portions, but add apocryphal
books. Westcott & Hort propagated Origen's corruptions, and
PRIMARILY used the Alexandrian texts for the Greek text which they
assembled. Of course those corrupt texts disagree with the Majority
NOW IF YOU DO NOT KNOW THIS IT MAY BE GOOD TO SIT DOWN. ALL, yes ALL, English versions, except ONE, use Alexandrian texts. Even ones that claim to use the Textus Receptus, actually use the corrupt Alexandrian tests when they make their changes from the Textus Receptus. Yes, the NKJV does too, maybe to a lesser extent; but, the
NKJV does still use the corrupt Alexandrian texts. The NKJV also
uses Kittle's Samaritan OT.
Thank God for Antioch where BELIEVERS were FIRST called Christians.
Antioch is also the name of the text stream that you can trust thatis NOT
corrupt. Get out your concordance and see that the Word ofGod has good
things to say about Antioch and bad is what onegenerally finds about where
Alexandria is located in Egypt. There is a Big difference between Alexandria
and Antioch. ONLY ONE English Bible comes from the Antioch line, and gold
star to you if you guessed The KJV Holy Bible. There are two lines of Bible
texts, one good (Antioch) one corrupt (Alexandria). Even the modern apostates
would not challenge the Ben Chayim Masoretic texts from which the old
testament portion of the KJV Holy Bible was translated.
If the LXX or Septuagent translation is ever found to be quoted
directly in the KJV New Testament or Old Testament it is simply
because it is the correct translation. Satan has to wrap his lies in
a lot of truth to get them to sell. Satan is pretty good at selling
lies. Just look how many so called preachers, scholars, prophets,
potentates, and poohbahs, have bought those profane corrupt bibles.
Some are so vain and/or ignorant to even use profane bibles in their
pulpits and writings. It is amazing how many otherwise intelligent
men use profane bibles. What might these men be able to teach us if
they were not so stupid to use profane bibles. It is VERY sad when
ANYONE would PRESUME to teach God's children from profane bibles,
and do NOT even recognize the Holy Bible that God promised to His
FAITHFUL humble children. It really is sad how otherwise intelligent
men could be sold on such perversion.
Earnestly Contending - Part 2 of 2
There are a couple of "church fathers" who were among the Greatest
Champions of Satan in history. We need to know something about them.
The first is Origen, who is the author of the LXX, or Septuagint,
and true father of the DAMNABLE Arian heresy. We should also know
about Origen's top student, Eusebius, who was Constantine's court
theologian. These two so-called "church fathers" are preeminent in
the subversion of THE Faith of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Eusebius may be said to be the true father of both the Roman
Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church, and even the
religion of Islam. ISLAM??? Yes, because it was the Roman pope who
put Mohammed in the Religion business in the Seventh Century
to "kill people of the book."
Origen is the church father of the Christianized version of the
Synagogue of Satan. It was not until the 4th century that it became
known as the Arian heresy, better known today, as the damnable
heresy of the Jehovah Witness Watchtower, or Christadelphians.
Sadly, the greatest revival of this damnable heresy is returning to
its roots, as the classic bible Synagogue of Satan. Today, this
greatest revival of the synagogue of Satan, sadly, is springing out
of the Messianic movement. One of the sad realities of the Messianic
movement today, is its failure to expose this damnable heresy for
what it is, just because it has a Hebrew Roots spin.
This damnable heresy denies that Yeshua is God the Son, the I AM,
the Creator as well as redeemer. This damnable heresy says that
Yeshua is NOT God, but a sort of second class god, and only Yahweh
is God. This is the classic biblical Synagogue of Satan. Perhaps the
most serious mess, of all the messy Messianic messes today, is the
freedom of such damnable heretic rabbis to subvert the souls of
those who have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.
Today, many are shocked and left vulnerable by the truth of Jer
16:19. Sadly, because the damnable Arian heretics of the Synagogue
of Satan in the Messianic congregations are not challenged, many
zealous people are having their souls subverted, and faith
Origen denied that Jesus Christ IS come in the flesh. Origen denied
that Jesus Christ is the I AM, God the Son, both Creator and
Redeemer, both God and man. Origen adulterated the Gospel with pagan
philosophy. Origen indeed was the true father of the Arian damnable
heresy, and his student, Eusebius was perhaps its greatest promoter.
The Arian heresy is the official name finally given to the Synagogue
of Satan, which all of the Apostles earnestly contended against.
This MOST DAMNABLE of heresies denied that the Father AND the Son
were of the same substance. BOTH God, as God the Father, AND God the
Son. Origen was classically antichrist, denying the Father AND the
Son BOTH being God.
Origen's Christianity was a kind of Gnosticism that would have made
him a great Watchtower Jehovah's Witness today, except for his
belief in reincarnation. Origen's top student was, Eusebius,
Constantine's court theologian, and establisher of the Roman
Catholic religious paganization of Apostolic or biblical
Christianity. Eusebius, is also the father of the so-called Eastern
Orthodox Church. Eusebius, indirectly, through the Roman
Christianized pagan church he established, by the Roman pope, in the
seventh century, even shares the culpability in the set up of
Mohammed in the religion business of "killing people of the book."
The Septuagint is often called the LXX because of the myth that it
was the work of Seventy scholars out of Alexandria Egypt. The truth
regarding the Septuagint, is that it is 100% the work of Origen, the
father of the paganizing of Christianity, AND the modern Synagogue
of Satan. Do NOT put your faith in the FRAUD of the Septuagint.
Often one may find liars for hire today, bringing up verses like
John 6:45, where Jesus says, It is written in the prophets, And they
shall be all taught of God. This Old Testament quote is from Isaiah
54:13. The liar for hire "scholars" tell us that this phrasing by
Jesus Christ in this verse, proves that Jesus and his disciples used
the fictitious Septuagint, which they claim was written 200 to 400
years before Christ. The liar for hire claim that the Septuagint is
an "official" Greek translation of the Old Testament, that was
supposedly done around 250 BC by seventy-two Jewish scholars, is a
bald faced lie.
The liars for hire, further claim that Jesus, and the New Testament
writers all used the Greek Septuagint. The liars for hire say, this
is why there is often a difference between the wording of one of
Jesus' quotes and the exact wording of the particular Old Testament
passage He is quoting. This is a bald faced lie, that people of
faith should declare to be the lie that it is. The teaching of
Yeshua, and the record of the doctrine of Christ established by the
Apostles, was inspired by the Holy Ghost. The gospels and epistles
of the New Testament were written in Greek. ONLY Greek approaches
the fullness and precision required. Only Greek could make the
fullness of the revelation of Word of God clear, and precise. The
Hebrew, compared to Greek, is a simple language, which does NOT have
such capability for either fullness or precision. The fullness of
the revelation of God to man was in the person of Jesus Christ,
whose name is called the Word of God. That record of the fullness
and exactness of the revelation simply could NOT be made in Hebrew.
Hebrew is not nearly as full, or precise as Greek, from a purely
The FACT is, that there is NO MANUSCRIPT EVIDENCE, NONE, zero, zip,
nada, of the existence of a Greek translation of the Old Testament
prior to 150 BC. The one and ONLY piece of Greek Old Testament
before Christ, consists of nothing more than some portions of
Deuteronomy chapters 23-28. One can NOT, in truth, call parts of 5
chapters of Deuteronomy an 'entire' Old Testament!
Yet people are led to believe that one may go to a Christian
bookstore and purchase a 'genuine' copy of the Septuagint. The truth
regarding this fraud is that the Old Testament Greek translation
that is sold, as The Septuagint, was NEVER translated BEFORE the
time of Christ. It is nothing more than a copy of a work that Origen
did in the 3rd century AD. The Septuagint is, in fact, one of the
six columns of Origen's Hexapia. Origen was one of the most DAMNABLE
HERETICS of all of history. If anyone is in need of proof that the
Septuagint is totally a product of Origen, the great heretic, just
God's children should KNOW that the KJV Holy Bible is the only Holy
Bible. Soon there will be Hebrew spinning, damnable, heretic,
wolves, in rabbis clothing, who claim to have found an ancient
Hebrew gospel of either Matthew or Mark. Do NOT believe such wolves.
The New Testament was originally written in Greek. PERIOD. Anyone
saying otherwise is a LIAR, in ignorance gone to seed, and possibly
a damnable heretic trying to lead you to the Synagogue of Satan. The
classic biblical Synagogue of Satan say they are Jews, and are not.
No one can be a Jew, a God-Pleaser, who denies the Father AND the
Son. Anyone who denies the Father AND the Son is antichrist, and
anyone who is anti-Messiah, can NOT be a true Jew. You know they
will claim to be God pleasers, Rom 2:28-29, but are NOT, because by
leaving the doctrine of Messiah, they deny the Lord who bought them.
Such wolves may be expected to promote some fraudulent original
Hebrew or Aramaic gospel. Some of such damnable heretics may even
deny that the Apostle Paul, was truly an Apostle, writing by the
inspiration of the Holy Spirit. I have never come across one who
denies Paul's epistles as being Holy Scripture, who was not a
Be quick to demand from anyone seeking Messianic or Christian
fellowship, that they DO confess that "Jesus Christ IS come in the
flesh." And for that classic test of the spirit, today, it MUST be
Jesus Christ, and not Yeshua, Yahshua, Y'shua or even
Yeshousheouryyysah. ANY reluctance to say Jesus Christ IS come in
the flesh, FAILS the test of the spirit.
1 John 4:1-3 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits
whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out
into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that
confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And
every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the
flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof
ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the
1 John 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the
Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father AND the Son.
2 John 7-11 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who
confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a
deceiver and an antichrist. Look to yourselves, that we lose not
those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full
reward. Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of
Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he
hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and
bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither
bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of
his evil deeds.
Did Come is true - But FAILS the test of the spirit.
Has Come is true - But FAILS the test of the spirit.
The only way of passing THE test of the spirit is - Jesus Christ IS
come in the flesh. That IS come is very important. IS come, is a
confession that Jesus Christ is the I AM, who spoke to Moses from
the burning bush, and wrote the 10 commandments in stone for Moses
with His Finger. That IS COME means that Jesus Christ is GOD the
Creator AND Redeemer, very God the Son of the Father, who took flesh
upon Himself to become the Lamb of God, the Perfect and ONLY
acceptable sin offering.
Ha Shem is as pleased with the Gentiles lifting up the name of
Yeshua as He is pleased by the Jews who lift up the name Jesus for
the sake of UNITY.
QUESTION:What is the LXX?
Dr. Samuel C. Gipp, ThD, gives the following answer and explanation. The LXX is a figment of someone’s imagination.
EXPLANATION:First, let's define what the LXX is supposed to be. An ancient document called "The Letter of Aristeas" revealed a plan to make an OFFICIAL translation of the Hebrew Bible (the Old Testament) in Greek. This translation was to be accepted as the official Bible of the Jews and was to replace the Hebrew Bible. Supposedly this translation work would be performed by 72 Jewish scholars (?), six from each of the twelve tribes of Israel. The supposed location of the work was to be Alexandria, Egypt. The alleged date of translation was supposedly around 250 BC, during the 400 years of silence between the close of the Old Testament in 397 BC and the birth of Christ in approximately 4 BC (due to a four year error in the calendar).
What is the "Septuagint"?
by David W. Daniels
If you look in the preface of a modern Bible, you will probably find a reference to the Septuagint, or LXX for short. The translators of all modern Bibles, including the New King James, use the Septuagint along with other texts in translating the Bible. They claim that the Septuagint contains true readings not found in the preserved Hebrew text. Thus they give it great importance. But what is the Septuagint? Here's how the legend goes:
The Septuagint is claimed to have been translated between 285-246 BC during the reign of Ptolemy II Philadelphus of Alexandria, Egypt. His librarian, supposedly Demetrius of Phalerum, persuaded Philadelphus to get a copy of the Hebrew Scriptures. Then the Scriptures (at least Genesis to Deuteronomy) were translated into the Greek language for the Alexandrian Jews. This part of the story comes from early church historian Eusebius (260-339 AD). Scholars then claim that Jesus and His apostles used this Greek Bible instead of the preserved Hebrew text.
The Letter of Aristeas
The whole argument that the Hebrew scriptures were translated into Greek before the time of Christ rests upon a single document. All other historical evidence supporting the argument either quotes or references this single letter.
In this so-called Letter of Aristeas, the writer presents himself as a close confidant of king Philadelphus. He claims that he persuaded Eleazar, the high priest, to send with him 72 scholars from Jerusalem to Alexandria, Egypt. There they would translate the Hebrew Scriptures into Greek, forming what we now call the Septuagint.
Jewish historian Josephus, Jewish mystic Philo (both first century AD) and others add to the story. Some say the 72 were shut in separate cells and "miraculously" wrote each of their versions word-for-word the same. They say that this proves "divine inspiration" of the entire Septuagint.
Thus, the Septuagint is claimed to exist at the time of Jesus and the apostles, and that they quoted from it instead of the preserved Hebrew text. This story has been passed around for centuries. But is it the truth? Was this Septuagint really written before the earthly ministry of the Lord Jesus and His apostles? Did they quote it? Was it really inspired by God? And if the story is a fake, why make up the story? Is there another reason to get people to use (or believe in) the Septuagint?
The verifiable facts:
The writer of this letter, Aristeas, claims to have been a Greek court official during the time of Philadelphus' reign. He claims to have been sent by Demetrius to request the best scholars of Israel to bring a copy of the Hebrew scriptures to Alexandria to start the Septuagint translation project. He even goes so far as to give names of Septuagint scholars, yet many of the names he gives are from the Maccabean era, some 75 years too late. Many of them are Greek names, definitely not the names of Hebrew scholars. There are many other evidences that this letter is from a different time period, and is thus a fake. The writer is lying about his identity.
The supposed "librarian," Demetrius of Phalerum (ca. 345-283) served in the court of Ptolemy Soter. Demetrius was never the librarian under Philadelphus.
The letter quotes the king telling Demetrius and the translators, when they arrived, how wonderful it was that they came on the anniversary of his "naval victory over Antigonus" (Aristeas 7:14). But the only such recorded Egyptian naval victory occurred many years after Demetrius death, so the letter is a fraud!
The Letter of Aristeas is a hoax that doesn't even fit the time period in which it claims to have been written. And since the other ancient writers merely add to this story, it is clear that the story itself of a pre-Christian Septuagint is a fraud. Even critical textual scholars admit that the letter is a hoax. Yet they persist in quoting the Letter of Aristeas as proof of the existence of the Septuagint before Christ.
New Testament evidence
Many scholars claim that Christ and his apostles used the Septuagint, preferring it above the preserved Hebrew text found in the temple and synagogues. But if the Greek Septuagint was the Bible Jesus used, he would not have said,
"For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." (Matthew 5:18)
Why would Jesus not have said this? Because the jot is a Hebrew letter, and the tittle is a small mark to distinguish between Hebrew letters. If Jesus used the Greek Septuagint, His scriptures would not have contained the jot and tittle. He obviously used the Hebrew scriptures!
In addition, Jesus only mentioned the scripture text in two ways, (1) "The Law and the Prophets" and (2) "The Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms":
"And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me." Luke 24:44
The Hebrews divide their Bible into three parts: the Law, the Prophets and the Writings. Jesus clearly referred to this. The Septuagint had no such division. In fact, it contains Apocryphal books interspersed throughout the Old Testament. The sequence is so hopelessly mixed up that Jesus could not possibly have been referring to it!
Who is pushing the Septuagint?
So why do we still hear the story? Why do people give it a second thought? Are there other reasons why they still try to use the Septuagint to find "original readings" that were supposedly "lost from the Hebrew"?.
Roman Catholics Need It
According to the Roman Catholic Douay Bible:
"…the Septuagint, the Greek translation from the original Hebrew, and which contained all the writings now found in the Douay version, as it is called, was the version used by the Saviour and his Apostles and by the Church from her infancy, and translated into Latin, known under the title of Latin Vulgate, and ever recognized as the true version of the written word of God" —Preface,1914 edition.
So Roman Catholics desperately want the Septuagint to be genuine —even inspired! You see, the so-called Septuagint is where they got the Apocrypha (books that are not inspired and have no place in our Bibles). If the Septuagint goes, then the Apocrypha goes with it!
Ecumenical Textual Critics Need It
The supposed text of the Septuagint is found today only in certain manuscripts. The main ones are: Codex Sinaiticus (Aleph); Codex Vaticanus (B); and Codex Alexandrinus (A). That's right. The Alexandrian manuscripts are the very texts we call the Septuagint!
In his Introduction to The Septuagint with Apocrypha: Greek and English (1851) Sir Lancelot Brenton describes how some critical scholars have attempted to call the Septuagint by its real name, the Alexandrian Text, but the name never stuck. Thus he admits that they are one and the same.
So we have textual critics who believe desperately in the 45 Alexandrian manuscripts (against more than 5,000 copies favoring the Textus Receptus). They use these to translate all modern New Testaments. But these Alexandrian manuscripts also include the Septuagint Old Testament (with the Apocrypha). They have fallen for a trap.
Catholics now argue the following: If you accept the Alexandrian text (which modern scholars use as the basis for all new translations) for your New Testament, then you also have to accept the rest of the Alexandrian text (Septuagint) , which includes the Apocrypha. What we are seeing is the development of an ecumenical Bible, including the Apocrypha. Some versions have already gone this way. For many Protestants, all roads are truly leading to Rome.
We Don't Need It.
But do we Christians need the Alexandrian manuscripts? Not at all! For the Old Testament we have the Preserved Words of God in the Hebrew Masoretic text. For the New Testament we have the 5,000-plus manuscripts in Greek, plus the many early translations spread abroad, to witness to the actual words of Christ and His apostles.
So the Septuagint story is a hoax. It was not written before Christ; so it was not used by Jesus or His apostles. It is the only set of manuscripts to include the Apocrypha mixed in with the books of the Bible, so as to justify the Roman Catholic inclusion of them in their Bibles. And it is just those same, perverted Alexandrian codices —the same ones that mess up the New Testament —dressed up in pretty packaging.
Let's stick to our preserved Bible, the King James Bible in English, and leave the Alexandrian perversions alone.
ARTICLE TITLE : Location of the Early Church: Another Look at Ephesus, Smyrna, & Rome.
"Of the 3,000 plus Greek manuscripts of the N.T., about 1700 are from the 12th - 14th centuries. They, along with 640 copies from the 9th - 11th centuries, are in basic agreement on approximately 99% of the words of the N.T. As a group, however, this majority disagree considerably with most of the copies from the early centuries - which also differ considerably among themselves. This, then, is the situation that has given rise to the debate over the original wording of the New Testament. Nevertheless, despite all the variations, nearly all of the words of the N.T. enjoy over 99% attestation from the extant Greek MSS/mss. Only about 2% have less than 95% support and fewer than 1% of the words have less than 80% (and most of these differ only slightly).
Yet for the past 100 years, the world of scholarship has been dominated by the view that this majority text is a secondary and inferior text. Scholars have rejected that we have had the true text of the originals all along and have thus attempted to reconstruct the original text of the N.T. on the basis of the few early manuscripts. But as these copies differ considerably among themselves, the result has been an eclectic "patchwork quilt". The editors of the dominant eclectic Greek text of today have usually followed a single Greek MSS and in dozens of places they have printed a text not found in any known Greek copy! The discrepancy between this eclectic text and the majority reading is about 8%. That would amount to 48 full pages of discrepancies in a 600 page text. Around 1/5 of that represents omissions in the "minority text" such that it is about 10 pages shorter than the majority text. Nearly all modern versions of the Bible are based on this "minority text" whereas the King James is based on an identical twin brother of the "majority text". This is why so many verses, phrases, etc. familiar to users of the KJB are missing in the modern versions.
The question is which of these two Greek texts is the Word of God?"
The Septuagint: A Critical Analysis
"The Septuagint (LXX) is a very old translation of the Hebrew Scriptures (our Old Testament) into Hellenistic Greek. This statement alone is almost the only hard fact concerning this translation that is truly verifiable. The vast majority of modern academia does not consider the "Hebrew" Bible and the Old Testament portion of our "Holy" Bible to be one and the same entity. Indeed, many laymen as well as numerous pastors may be surprised to "learn" that, according to these same academicians, the original text of God's Word has been lost and is in need of "recovery".
Modern scholarship upholds that there are three families of Old Testament manuscripts. Most believe that all three must be compared in order to arrive at the original text. The three are the Hebrew Masoretic Text, the Samaritan Pentateuch, and the Septuagint. Because the LXX is supposedly 1100 plus years older and as it reads very different from the oldest extant Hebrew manuscripts, text critics presume that the LXX was translated from an older more reliable Hebrew text. Believing the LXX contains readings that have been lost or corrupted in the Hebrew Scriptures, these critics hold that the Septuagint may be used in determined places to "correct and restore" these adulterated readings. This illustrates the important position which the LXX has attained in Old Testament textual critical circles. Indeed, one constantly reads in the relevant literature that it was "the" Bible of the early Christians. But - we wonder - is such veneration of the Septuagint by academia justified. Does the New Testament actually quote from the LXX? This fresh critical analysis examines the above with surprising results."
Origen - Christian scholar and Biblical interpreter. Produced his "Hexapla" - the Old Testament in six parallel versions of Hebrew and Greek texts : Hebrew, Hebrew transliterated in Greek, Aquila's Greek translation, Symmachus' Greek translation, Origen's revised Greek translation, Theodotion's revised Septuagint
It is not totally clear today what the original contents of the Septuagint were, as the earliest copy extant can be dated to c.350 AD, five hundred years after the original translation was made, ACCORDING TO FABLE WITH ABSOLUTELY NO VERIFYING EVIDENCE OF THIS FABLE. Today’s Septuagint contains canonical and Apocryphal books in an order (or lack of order) indicating that no distinction was made between them, and it is entirely possible that the content changed significantly since the days of Ptolemy. Further to this, Ptolemy was interested in the translation for purely literary reasons; he probably in no way represented a Jewish opinion of the texts, therefore the evidence of the Septuagint can only conclusively tell us that a ‘process of canonisation’ was occurring, but was not yet complete; that is, the Jews certainly had a body or collection of texts (the Law probably being "unofficially canonised"), each with a certain amount of authority, but definitive conclusions had not been reached concerning many if any of them.
The Catholic Encyclopediaalso states, "The protocanonical books of the Old Testament correspond with those of the Bible of the Hebrews, and the Old Testament as received by Protestants. The deuterocanonical (deuteros, "second") are those whose Scriptural character was contested in some quarters, but which long ago gained a secure footing in the Bible of the Catholic Church, though those of the Old Testament are classed by Protestants as the "Apocrypha". These consist of seven books: Tobias (Tobit), Judith, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, I and II Machabees, and three documents added to protocanonical books, viz., the supplement to Esther, from x, 4, to the end, the Canticle of the Three Youths (Song of the Three Children) in Daniel, iii, and the stories of Susanna and the Elders and Bel and the Dragon, forming the closing chapters of the Catholic version of that book...The ancient Greek Old Testament known as the Septuagint was the vehicle which conveyed these additional Scriptures into the Catholic Church. The Septuagint version was the Bible of the Greek-speaking, or Hellenist, Jews, whose intellectual and literary centre was Alexandria (see SEPTUAGINT). The oldest extant copies date from the fourth and fifth centuries of our era...The most explicit definition of the Catholic Canon is that given by the Council of Trent, Session IV, 1546...The order of books copies that of the Council of Florence, 1442, and in its general plan is that of the Septuagint" (Reid, Old Testament Canon).
"The Orthodox Church...as...its authoritative text for the Old Testament, it uses the ancient Greek Septuagint. When this differs from the original Hebrew (which happens quite often), Orthodox believe that the changes in the Septuagint were made under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and are to be accepted as part of God's contiuing revelation...The Hebrew version of the Old Testament contains thirty-nine books. The Septuagint contains in addition ten further books not present in the Hebrew, which are known in the Orthodox Church as the 'Deutero-Canonical Books'. These were declared by the Councils of Jassy (1641) and Jerusalem (1672) to be 'genuine parts of Scripture'; most Orthodox scholars...consider that the Deutero-Canonical Books, although part of the Bible, stand at a lower footing than the rest of scripture" (Ware T. The Orthodox Church, p.200).
This is astounding.
While the Bible clearly teaches, "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work" (2 Timothy 3:16-17), apparently the Orthodox (and Roman Catholic) Church apparently believes that the Hebrew Old Testament needed to be corrected and expanded. And as their own literature admits, the Romans finally listed the ones they accepted in one place in 1542 and the Orthodox apparently did not officially finalize their list until about 100 years later!
And they took what Greek-speaking Jews (as opposed to the Hebrews of Palestine) preferred--even though other writings of these groups admit that it was the Palestinian Christians (those initially based from Jerusalem, and those that would have relied on the canon of the Palestinian Jews) that "kept the faith in purity"
It should be noted that the New Testament makes it clear that the original disciples were Palestinian Hebrews and not from the Hellenists (e.g. Acts 6:1-2). Paul was not a Hellenist either (Acts 9:26-29).
Quotes in the New Testament from the Greek
Here is what the Catholic priest Jerome wrote about the Book of Matthew and its use of the Old Testament, "Matthew, also called Levi, apostle and aforetimes publican, composed a gospel of Christ at first published in Judea in Hebrew for the sake of those of the circumcision who believed, but this was afterwards translated into Greek though by what author is uncertain. The Hebrew itself has been preserved until the present day in the library. at Caesarea which Pamphilus so diligently gathered. I have also had the opportunity of having the volume described to me bythe Nazarenesof Beroea, a city of Syria, who use it. In this it is to be noted that wherever the Evangelist, whether on his own account or in the person of our Lord the Saviour quotes the testimony of the Old Testament he does not follow the authority of the translators of the Septuagint but the Hebrew. Wherefore these two forms exist "Out of Egypt have I called my son, " and "for he shall be called a Nazarene" " (Jerome. De Viris Illustribus (On Illustrious Men). Excerpted from Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series, Volume 3. Edited by Philip Schaff and Henry Wace. American Edition, 1892. Online Edition Copyright © 2005 by K. Knight).
This shows that the Hebrew is what was normally used in Palestine.
But, since nearly all of the New Testament was written in Greek, it is logical that Greek translations were sometimes quoted.
John Ogwyn noted, ""Should we be concerned that some New Testament quotations from the Old Testament were taken from a Greek translation—the Septuagint—rather than from the Hebrew Masoretic Text? Greek was the most universal language at the time when the New Testament was being written. Gentile converts were unfamiliar with the Hebrew language and even most Jews outside of Palestine no longer had a good reading knowledge of Hebrew. The Septuagint was a Greek translation of the Old Testament that had been made in Egypt. But it was not the only Greek translation of the Old Testament available in the time when the New Testament was written. There was at least one Greek translation that differed significantly from the Septuagint. It was used by Theodotion in the second century ad for his revised Greek text of the Old Testament. The book of Daniel, as preserved in Greek translation by Theodotion, matches far more closely the quotations from Daniel in the New Testament than does the Septuagint, for instance. Though none of the Greek translations of the Old Testament were totally accurate, most of their deviations from the Hebrew text were in areas that did not affect the overall sense of the message...Gleason Archer and G. C. Chirichigno in their comprehensive work, Old Testament Quotations in the New Testament: A Complete Survey, make the following points about New Testament quotations: 1) in 268 New Testament citations both the Septuagint and Masoretic Text are in complete harmony; 2) in 50 citations the New Testament agrees with the Septuagint, even though it differs slightly from the Masoretic Text (although not seriously enough to distort the meaning); 3) in 33 citations the New Testament adheres more closely to the Masoretic Text than to the Septuagint; 4) in 22 citations the New Testament adheres closely to the Septuagint even when it deviates somewhat from the Masoretic Text. The New Testament writers only made use of Septuagint quotations if those passages properly conveyed the inspired meaning of the Hebrew text" (Ogwyn J. How Did We Get The Bible. Tomorrow's World, LCG Magazine. January-February 2002).
The Jews in Palestine were tasked with preserving the books of the Old Testament, which were almost exclusively written in Hebrew and naturally contained no Greek. This is what Jesus and the disciples would have used.
Melito, one-time Bishop of Smyrna (and a saint even according to Catholic sources), stated that the books of the Old Testament were those that he listed. And those that he listed were those from the Palestinian Jews (the so-called protocanonical books) and did not include one book from the additional ones that the Hellenists preserved (sometimes called deuterocanonical books). And note that Melito, according to Catholic sources, knew that the Jews had not accepted the books of the Hellenistic Alexandrians.
The 39 books that are in the Old Testaments that those in the Protestant Churches are the correct books of the Old Testament. Only the antinomian Justin Martyr, and those that supported some of his heresies or the heresies of others, supported that the Christian Church would use different books than the Palestinian Jews. Most Protestants never accepted this. The true Old Testament canon is based on the biblical criteria and this canon essentially was affirmed during the 2nd Century by one considered to have been faithful (Melito).
Dr. Thomas Holland, ThD.
The Masoretic Text is the traditional Hebrew Old Testament text of both Judaism and Protestantism (The Catholic Church, historically, used the Latin translation of Jerome based on the Greek LXX). Masoretic comes from the word Masora which usually refers to the notes printed beside the Hebrew text by Jewish scribes and scholars.
Until recently, the oldest manuscripts of the Hebrew Old Testament dated from the ninth century and onward. These Hebrew manuscripts of the middle ages are in general agreement. The Biblia Hebraica by Kittel is the basic Hebrew Old Testament used by scholars and translators and is based on the Masoretic Text from this time period. However, with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls manuscripts which date from around 168 BC to about 68 AD. Thus providing us with Hebrew manuscripts which outdate the previous manuscripts by about 1,000 years. What is interesting to the student of textual criticism and the believer in Biblical preservation, is the fact that a large number of the DSS agree with the Masoretic Text. Although there are manuscripts within the findings of the DSS which agree with the LXX and also reflect a differing Hebrew Text with a number of variants, the fact remains that we now have manuscripts dating from the time of Christ or before which agree with the Masoretic Text. This give additional credence to the preciseness and integrity of the Hebrew scribes in their accuracy of reproducing the manuscripts throughout the ages. And, most importantly, it shows the preservation of the Old Testament Text in Hebrew by God.
Dr. Emanuel Tov of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and one of the editors of the DSS writes:
" Of similar importance are the new data about the context of the biblical scrolls, since different texts are recognizable. Some texts reflect precisely the consonantal framework of the medieval MT (Masoretic Text). Others reflect the basic framework of the MT, although their spelling is different. Still others differ in many details from the MT, while agreeing with the Septuagint or Samaritan Pentateuch. Some texts do not agree with any previously known text at all, and should be considered independent textual traditions. Thus, the textual picture presented by the Qumran scrolls represents a textual variety that was probably typical for the period." (The Oxford Companion to the Bible, edited by Bruce Metzger and Michael Coogan, 1993; p.160)
Norman Geisler and William Nix attest to most of the DSS reflecting the Masoretic Text. In their book, A General Introduction to the Bible, they write, " The (Dead Sea) scrolls give an overwhelming confirmation of the fidelity of the Masoretic text." (p. 261). They go on to cite Millar Burrows' work, The Dead Sea Scrolls, " It is a matter of wonder, " states Burrows, " that through something like a thousand years the text underwent so little alteration. As I said in my first article on the scroll, 'Herein lies its chief importance, supporting the fidelity of the Masoretic tradition.'" (Ibid.). Ernst Wurthwein cites R. de Vaux as saying, " The script is more developed, the Biblical text is definitely that of the Masora, and it must be concluded from this that the documents from Qumran (i.e. DSS) are older, earlier than the second century." (Wurthwein, p. 31). Concerning the scrolls of Isaiah found in Cave 1 at Qumran, Wurthwein writes, " The scrolls (1QIsa. a.) has a popular type text which supports (the Masoretic Text) essentially, but which also offers a great number of variants. . .A second Isaiah manuscripts (1QIsa. b.) is fragmentary, but stands much closer to the Masoretic text." (Ibid. p. 32).
Fragments of Leviticus in Old Hebrew script (1QLev. a) add support to the antiquity of the Masoretic Text. These fragments cover Leviticus 19:31-34; 20:20- 23. Concerning these Wurthwein states, " These fragments are the earliest of the Old Hebrew script written on leather. . .(only) one variant from (MT) is found in 20:21" (Ibid. p.148). The one variant referred to by Wurthwein deals with one letter in a word, which does not change the meaning of the word. If the student has a Stong's Exhaustive Concordance they can see for themselves the minor difference in this word. Strong list the word as #1931 in his Hebrew and Chaldee Dictionary. Both forms are listed together. The Masoretic Text uses the Hebrew word hoo while the DSS uses the Hebrew word he. It is the same Hebrew word and is a personal pronoun meaning he, she, or it. The two seem to be used interchangeably throughout the Hebrew Old Testament.
Additional manuscripts have also been found which support the Masoretic Text. Again Wurthwein informs us of the following: " Also important are the remains of fourteen scrolls with Biblical texts from the period before AD 73, discovered while excavating the rock fortress of Masada in the Judean desert in 1963-1965. These agree extensively with the traditional Biblical texts--only in the text of Ezekiel are there a few insignificant variants." (Ibid. p. 31). To these we can also add the Geniza Fragments which date from the fifth century AD. These manuscripts were discovered in 1890 at Cairo, Egypt. They were located in a type of storage room for worn or faulty manuscripts, which was called the Geniza. The fragments number around 200,000 and reflect Biblical texts in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Arabic. The Biblical texts discovered support the Masoretic Text.
In one sense, the Masoretic Text may be thought of as the Textus Receptus of the Old Testament. In fact, some scholars have referred to it as such. Like the Textus Receptus of the New Testament, the Masoretic Text is based on the majority of manuscripts and reflects the traditional text used. Although there are differences found in some Masoretic Texts, these differences are minor and usually deal with, orthography, vowel points, accents, and divisions of the text. In 1524/25, Daniel Bomberg published an edition of the Masoretic Text based on the tradition of Jacob ben Chayyim. Jacob ben Chayyim was a Jewish refugee who later became a Christian. It was his text which was used by the translators of the King James Bible for their work in the Old Testament, and it was the basis of Kittel's first two editions of his Hebrew text. Wurthwein notes that the text of ben Chayyim, " enjoyed an almost canonical authority up to our own time." (Ibid. p. 37).
For about six generations the Masoretic Text was reproduced by the ben Asher family. Moses ben Asher produced a text in 895 AD known as Codex Cairensis containing the writing of the Prophets. Codex Leningradensis dates to 1008 AD and was based on the work of Aaron ben Moses ben Asher, the son of Moses ben Asher. This Codex is the oldest manuscript containing the complete Bible. Some of the differences found within this family of manuscripts are the basis of Kittel's third edition of his Biblia Hebraica and has been used by scholars in producing modern translations of the Bible, such as the New International Version (1978), the New King James Version (1982), and the New Revised Standard Version (1989).
One example which shows the difference between the text of ben Chayyim and that of ben Asher, is found in Jeremiah 3:7. The KJV reads, " And I said after she had done all these things, Turn thou unto me. But she returned not. And her treacherous sister Judah saw it." The phrase, " And I said" is also used by the ASV of 1901 and the LXX. However, modern versions such as the NIV use the textual variant and render the verse as, " I thought that after she had done all this she would return to me but she did not, and her unfaithful sister Judah saw it.". This is also the reading of the RSV and NRSV, changing the opening phrase to " I thought". Even though the NKJV is based on the text of ben Asher, they elected to keep the reading as it is found in the KJV and the Masoretic Text of ben Chayyim. Contextually, the reading of the KJV is unquestionably superior. It is one thing for God to claim that Israel should return to Him, as stated in the text. It is quite another for God to have thought something would happen which did not. The reading as it is found in most modern versions seems to question the omniscience of God.
For the most part, scholarship agrees that the Masoretic Text became the standard authorized Hebrew text around 100 AD in connection with the completion of the New Testament. Thus we see that the Masoretic Text existed prior to the writings of the New Testament, was used as the official Hebrew Old Testament at the time of the establishing of the Biblical canon, and has been used since as the official representation of the Hebrew originals. Hence we can see in the Masoretic Text the preservation of Scripture in the Hebrew Old Testament, as we can in the Textus Receptus the preservation of Scripture in the Greek New Testament.
THE GREEK SEPTUAGINT:
The most noted Old Testament translated into Greek is the Septuagint (also known as the LXX). The conventional thought is that the LXX was translated from the Hebrew text by Hellenistic Jews during the period from 275 to 100 BC at Alexandria, Egypt. And, as pointed out by scholars such as Ralph W. Klein, the LXX used a differing Hebrew text and not that of the Masorictic Text type, as reflected in some of the finding among the DSS. The LXX was used by Jerome in producing his Old Testament of the Latin Vulgate used by the Roman Catholic Church, and the LXX remains the official Old Testament of the Greek Orthodox Church. This accounts for the additional books found in the Catholic and Orthodox Churches known as the Apocrypha, because they are contained in the text of the LXX.
The association of the Latin numbers LXX (meaning 70) with the Septuagint comes from the LEGEND, (pure fiction), concerning the origin of this Greek translation. According to the Letter of Aristeas seventy Jewish scholars were chosen to translate the Law of Moses into Greek so that it could be added to the great library of Ptolemy Philadelphus in Alexandria, Egypt. The letter states that the High Priest in Jerusalem sent 72 scholars to the Egyptian king. The High Priest writes, " In the presence of all the people I selected six elders from each tribe, good men and true, and I have sent them to you with a copy of our law. It will be a kindness, O righteous king, if you will give instruction that as soon as the translation of the law is completed, the men shall be restored again to us in safety." (Letter of Aristeas 2:34-35). Thus six scholars from the twelve tribes number seventy-two (it is to be assumed that the 70 is merely a rounding off of the 72).
One wide-spread myth concerning the LXX is an old story which states that the translators worked on their translation alone and compared their work each morning, only to find that each had translated the passage exactly the same. This, of course, has no historical foundation and some have falsely applied this story to the translators of the King James Bible. However, stories such as this one caused some to claim inspiration for the LXX. Dr. Karlfried Froehlich notes this and writes, " Inspiration was also claimed for the Greek translation of the 'Seventy', which was endorsed by Alexandrian Jewish authorities. In Christian eyes, the legend of the Septuagint's miraculous origin, first told in the Letter of Aristeas, then elaborated by Philo, and further embellished by Christian authors such as Justin Martyr, Irenaeus of Lyons, Tertullian, and Augustine, even rendered the Septuagint superior to the Hebrew original." (The Oxford Companion to the Bible, p. 310).
Even if the story given in the Letter of Aristeas were true, the Greek translation deals only with the first five books of the Old Testament. Most scholars note that there are differences in style and quality of translation within the LXX and assign a much greater time frame than the seventy-two days allotted in the Letter of Aristeas. In his book, Textual Criticism of the Old Testament: The Septuagint after Qumran, Ralph Klein notes, " the Letter of Aristeas is riddled with many historical improbabilities and errors. . .And yet, however legendary and improbable the details, many still believe that some accurate historical facts about the LXX can be distilled from Aristeas: (1) the translation began in the third century BC; (2) Egypt was the place of origin; and (3) the Pentateuch was done first." (p. 2).
Dr. F. F. Bruce correctly points out that, strictly speaking, the LXX deals only with the Law and not the whole Old Testament. Bruce writes, " The Jews might have gone on at a later time to authorize a standard text of the rest of the Septuagint, but . . . lost interest in the Septuagint altogether. With but few exceptions, every manuscript of the Septuagint which has come down to our day was copied and preserved in Christian, not Jewish, circles." (The Books and the Parchments, p.150). This is important to note because the manuscripts which consist of our LXX today date to the third century AD. Although there are fragments which pre-date Christianity and some of the Hebrew DSS agree with the LXX, the majority of manuscripts we have of the LXX date well into the Christian era. And, not all of these agree.
The most noted copy of the LXX is that found in the Hexapla by Origen. Origen produced an Old Testament with six translations paralleled together, called the Hexapla which means sixfold. The fifth column was the LXX. (The columns of the Hexapla were as follows: 1. The Hebrew text. 2. The Hebrew transliterated into Greek. 3. The Greek translation of Aquila. 4. The Greek translation of Symmachus. 5. The LXX. 6. The Greek translation of Theodotion.) However, we do not have Origen's Hexapla (with the exception of a few limited fragments). Sir Frederic Kenyon wrote, " A considerable number of MSS. exist which give information as to Origen's Hexaplaric text and particular passages in the other columns, but these do not go far towards enabling us to recover the LXX text as it existed before Origen; and this remains the greatest problem which confronts the textual student of the Septuagint. Until we can do that, we are not in a position fully to utilize the evidence of the Greek for the recovery of the pre-Masoretic Hebrew." (The Text of the Greek Bible, p.35). In other words, we cannot fully reconstruct Origen's fifth column, let alone a pre-Origenian Septuagint.
Origen's LXX was revised and edited by two of his disciples, Pamphilus and Eusebius. There were additional Greek translations of the Old Testament during this time which were also contained in the Hexapla, such as the work by Aquila and Theodotion. Some scholars believe that the translation produced by Theodotion replaced the LXX in the book of Daniel so that the readings there are really that of Theodotion and not of the LXX. However, others have claimed that this is not the case. Therefore, concerning Origen's Hexapla and the LXX the best scholars can say is that cited by Ernst Wurthwein, " Although no authentic manuscript of the Hexaplaric Septuagint has survived, there are manuscripts which represent the text of Origen more or less closely." (The Text of the Old Testament, p.57). Two such manuscripts which represent the text of Origen are Codex Vaticanus and Codex Sinaiticus, which the student will recall from our study of New Testament textual criticism.
THE LXX AND THE KJV TRANSLATORS:
It is interesting to note in our study of manuscript evidence and the King James Bible, how the translators of the KJV viewed the LXX. This Greek work did not go unnoticed by these men as can be seen in the original preface to the KJV written by Dr. Miles Smith. The following are a few paragraphs from the KJV preface for the student to consider. Afterwards, comments will be made.
1) " Notwithstanding, though it was commended generally, yet it did not fully content the learned, no not of the Jews. For not long after Christ, Aquila fell in hand with a new Translation, and after him Theodotion, and after him Symmachus; yea, there was a fifth and a sixth edition, the Authors whereof were not known. (Epiphan. de mensur. et ponderibus.) These with the Seventy made up the Hexapla and were worthily and to great purpose compiled together by Origen."
2) " Yet for all that, as the Egyptians are said of the Prophet to be men and not God, and their horses flesh and not spirit (Isaiah 31:3); so it is evident, (and Saint Jerome affirmeth as much) (S. Jerome. de optimo genere interpret.) that the Seventy were Interpreters, they were not Prophets; they did many things well, as learned men; but yet as men they stumbled and fell, one while through oversight, another while through ignorance, yea, sometimes they may be noted to add to the Original, and sometimes to take from it; which made the Apostles to leave them many times, when they left the Hebrew, and to deliver the sense thereof according to the truth of the word, as the spirit gave them utterance. This may suffice touching the Greek Translations of the Old Testament."
3) " Now to the latter we answer; that we do not deny, nay we affirm and avow, that the translation of the Bible in English, set forth by men of our profession, (for we have seen none of theirs of the whole Bible as yet) containeth the word of God, nay, is the word of God. As the King's speech, which he uttereth in Parliament, being translated into French, Dutch, Italian, and Latin, is still the King's speech, though it be not interpreted by every Translator with the like graadventure so fitly for phrase, nor so expressly for sense, everywhere. . The Romanists therefore in refusing to hear, and daring to burn the Word translated, did no less than despite the spirit of grace, from whom originally it proceeded, and whose sense and meaning, as well as man's weakness would able, it did express. . .The like we are to think of Translations. The translation of the Seventy dissenteth from the Original in many places, neither doth it come near it, for perspicuity, gravity, majesty; yet which of the Apostles did condemn it? Condemn it? Nay, they used it, . . .To be short, Origen, and the whole Church of God for certain hundred years, were of another mind: for they were so far from treading under foot, (much more from burning) the Translation of Aquila a Proselyte, that is, one that had turned Jew; of Symmachus, and Theodotion, both Ebionites, that is, most vile heretics, that they joined together with the Hebrew Original, and the Translation of the Seventy (as hath been before signified out of Epiphanius) and set them forth openly to be considered of and perused by all. But we weary the unlearned, who need not know so much, and trouble the learned, who know it already."
In the first paragraph we find that the KJV translators attest to Origen's Hexapla and early Greek translations of the Old Testament which post-date the birth of Christianity. These translations, along with the LXX, paralleled in the Hexapla.
The second paragraph shows that the KJV translators saw some of the limitations of the LXX. They recognized that the LXX was produced by Interpreters and not by inspired Prophets. Although the LXX translates many things well, it also failed many times and departed from the original Hebrew (i.e. Masoretic Text). Sometimes the LXX adds to the Hebrew, and at other times it omits. Which, according the KJV translators, made the New Testament writers to, " leave them many times, when they left the Hebrew, and to deliver the sense thereof according to the truth of the word, as the spirit gave them utterance." This simply means that when a New Testament writer cites the LXX, they freely corrected the LXX when it differed from the Hebrew, or as they were moved by inspiration.
The third paragraph is lengthy to show the context. The KJV translators promoted the use of translations. Not as we have come to understand it with a variety of versions differing from one another, but the importance of having the word of God translated into the language of those who cannot read Hebrew or Greek. Their argument was against the Catholic Church which at that time made it a practice of burning Bibles which were in any language other than Latin. The Catholic Church considered such translations as corrupt and worthy of burning. The KJV translators are arguing that the history of the Church demonstrates that even when a translation is poorly done, God can still use it and it should not be burned, as the Catholic Church had a practice of doing. They illustrate their point with the Greek translations of Aquila and Theodotion, which were translated by non-believers and yet their work was not burned by believers. They claim the same with the LXX.
THE LXX AND THE NEW TESTAMENT:
There are several places where the New Testament quotations of the Old Testament are said to be citations of the LXX. Several of these passages will agree simply because there is a limited way of translating Hebrew into Greek.
Such would be the case in Genesis 5:24 as compared with Hebrews 11:5. The writer of Hebrews and the LXX both use the phrase God translated him in reference to Enoch. The phrase in Greek is metetheken auton o Theos in both the NT and the LXX. The English translations are as follows:
" And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him." (Genesis 5:24 KJV)
" And Enoch was well-pleasing to God, and was not found, because God translated him." (Genesis 5:24 LXX)
" By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he please God." (Heb. 11:5)
At first glance it would seem that the NT passage in Hebrews chapter eleven is closer to the LXX than the OT Hebrew of Genesis chapter five. As we know, the NT was written in Greek, the OT in Hebrew. However, the Hebrew word for took in this passage is lawkakh which means to take or move from one place to another. The Greek way of saying the Hebrew lawkakh is methetheken which means translated. Dr. Charles Ryrie seems to agree with this. He writes, " He (Enoch) walked (lit., walked about, i.e. lived) with God, and instead of letting him die, God took him (the same Hebrew word is used for the translation of Elijah, 2 Kings 2:3,5; cf. Heb. 11:5)." (Ryrie Study Bible, p.15). This is not a citation of the LXX, but a Greek translation of the Hebrew word for took. Further, the student should notice that this verse is a statement of EVENTS found in Genesis five, not a QUOTATION of Genesis 5:24.
Another example is that of Hebrews 1:6, " And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him." The problem here is that there is no passage in the Old Testament which reads as it is cited in Hebrews chapter one. However, the LXX does have the phrase, Let all the angels of God worship him, in Deuteronomy 32:43 as does one of the Hebrew fragments found among the DSS. Therefore some claim that the writer of Hebrews is citing either the LXX, or the Hebrew variant found in the DSS.
There is, however, another explanation. Psalm 97:7 reads, " Confounded be all they that serve graven images, that boast themselves of idols: worship him, all ye gods." The Hebrew word translated as gods is Elohim which is also translated as angels (the DSS fragment of Deuteronomy 32:43 also uses the Hebrew word Elohim). One way to translate Elohim into English is to use the word gods. One way to translate Elohim into Greek is to use the word angelos. This being the case, the Greek way of saying Psalm 97:7 would be, proskuneton auto pantes angeloi Theou.
Additionally, Thomas Hewitt, writes, " There is no Hebrew equivalent for Let all the angles of God worship him in our existing text. It may be derived from Psalm xcvii. 7 'worship him, all ye gods' (Heb. elohim). The LXX has 'angels' instead of 'gods'. The quotation, however, is exactly found in Deuteronomy xxxii. 43 (LXX), though this may be an addition by a later hand." (Tyndale NT Commentaries in Hebrews, p. 55). It is interesting that Hewitt states that the passage found in Deuteronomy 32:43 of the LXX may have been added by a later hand. If this is true, there very well may be additional places where the LXX simply adds to the OT by citing the NT.
The following is a list provided by the American Bible Society (ABS) of LXX readings in the NT. The OT passage is given first, followed by the NT citation of it in parentheses.
Genesis 5:24 (Heb. 11:5)
Genesis 46:27 (Acts. 7:14)
Genesis 47:31 (Heb. 11:21)
Exodus 9:16 (Romans 9:17)
Deuteronomy 17:7 (1 Corinthians 5:13)
Deuteronomy 18:15 (Acts 3:22)
Deuteronomy 27:26 (Galatians 3:10)
Deuteronomy 29:18 (Heb. 12:15)
Deuteronomy 32:17 (1 Corinthians 10:20)
Deuteronomy 32:43 (Heb. 1:6)
Psalm 2:1-2 (Acts 4:25-26)
Psalm 2:9 (Revelation 2:27)
Psalm 4:4 (Ephesians 4:26)
Psalm 5:9 (Romans 3:13)
Psalm 8:2 (Matthew 21:16)
Psalm 8:5 (Heb. 2:7)
Psalm 10:7 (Romans 3:14)
Psalm 14:3 or 53:3 (Romans 3:12)
Psalm 16:8-11 (Acts 2:25-28)
Psalm 19:4 (Romans 10:18)
Psalm 34:12 (1 Peter 3:10)
Psalm 40:6 (Heb. 10:5)
Psalm 51:4 (Romans 3:4)
Psalm 69:22-23 (Romans 11:9-10)
Psalm 95:7-8 (Heb. 3:15; 4:7)
Psalm 102:25-27 (Heb. 1:10-12)
Psalm 104:4 (Heb. 1:7)
Psalm 116:10 (2 Corinthians 4:13)
Psalm 118:6 (Heb. 13:6)
Proverbs 3:4 (2 Corinthians 8:21)
Proverbs 3:34 (James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5)
Proverbs 3:11-12 (Heb. 12:5-6)
Proverbs 4:26 (Heb. 12:13)
Proverbs 11:31 (1 Peter 4:18)
Proverbs 25: 21-22 (Romans 12:20)
Isaiah 1:9 (Romans 9:29)
Isaiah 6:9-10 (Matthew 13:14-15; Mark 4:12; Luke 8:10; John 12:40; Acts 28:26-27)
Isaiah 7:14 (Matthew 1:23)
Isaiah 10:22-23 (Romans 9:27-28)
Isaiah 11:10 (Romans 15:12)
Isaiah 26:11 (Heb. 10:27)
Isaiah 28:16 (Romans 9:33; 10:11; 1 Peter 2:6)
Isaiah 29:13 (Matthew 15:8-9;Mark 7:6-7)
Isaiah 29:14 (1 Corinthians 1:19)
Isaiah 40:3-5 (Matthew 3:3; Mark 1:3; Luke 3:4-6)
Isaiah 40:6-7 (James 1:10-11; 1 Peter 1:24)
Isaiah 40:13 (Romans 11:34; 1 Corinthians 2:16)
Isaiah 42:4 (Matthew 12:21)
Isaiah 43:20 (1 Peter 2:9)
Isaiah 45:23 (Romans 14:11; Philippians 2:11)
Isaiah 52:5 (Romans 2:24)
Isaiah 52:15 (Romans 15:21)
Isaiah 53:1 (John 12:38, 40; Romans 10:16)
Isaiah 59:20-21 (Romans 11:26-27)
Isaiah 61:1 (Luke 4:18)
Isaiah 65:1-2 (Romans 10:20-21)
Jeremiah 31:32 (Heb. 8:9)
Ezekiel 28:13 (Revelation 2:7)
Hosea 13:14 (1 Corinthians 15:55)
Joel 2:30-31 (Acts 2:19-20)
Amos 5:25-27 (Acts 13:34)
Amos 9:11-12 (Acts 15:16-18)
Habakkuk 1:5 (Acts 13:41)
Habakkuk 2:4 (Heb. 10:38)
Haggai 2:5 (Heb. 12:26)
As one can see, the list is rather lengthy (and I might add incomplete). It would be rather tedious to compare all the verses in this list. I have, however, provided the student with a few examples which follow. There are many times when the Greek of the LXX and the NT match word perfectly. Such would be the case of Deuteronomy 17:7 with 1 Corinthians 5:13, for a short citation; and Psalm 2:1-2 with Acts 4:25-26 for a much longer citation. Despite the verses which match, there are many places which do not. Sometimes these are translated the same, but they are not the same Greek words or word order. To explain this the ABS states, " The writers of the New Testament generally quoted or paraphrased the ancient Greek translation of the Old Testament, commonly known as the Septuagint Version," (New Testament Passages Quoted or Paraphrased from the Septuagint, found in the TEV, Thomas Nelson Pub. 1976 ed. p. 367). The problem here is that once we open the possibility that many of the citations are not quotations but paraphrases of the LXX, we cannot be certain that it was in fact the LXX that was paraphrased. In addition, many of these citations reflect only a few words differing. This would not constitute a paraphrase.
One can point to Clement and say that his citations do not match the King James Version, nor do they always match the Masoretic Hebrew Text. This is to be expected since Clement was not using the KJV. Further, whatever text he did use, if it was not already translated into Greek he had to do so himself. And yet, if we claim that Clement was not using the Masoretic Text because his citations do not match, how can we claim that he was using the LXX since they likewise do not match? The dogma that Clement and other early Church Father strictly used the LXX seems rather remote.
In accordance with this same historical time frame, Sir Frederic Kenyon has pointed out that, " (The LXX) was not . . . accepted by the stricter Jews, who in controversy repudiated arguments based on Septuagint texts." (The Text of the Greek Bible p.29). This is also true of Josephus who rejected the LXX because of its additions to the Hebrew canon of scripture. Likewise, scholarship reconignize that the enhancement of the LXX in history came not from the Jewish scribs, but from sources within Christiandom from around the third century.
As to its value in the study of textual criticism, Dr. Ernst Wurthwein writes, "No other version has received as much attention for textual criticism as [the LXX]. Not only was it valued highly in antiquity, but in the nineteenth century many scholars practically preferred it over the Masoretic text. They believed that because of its pre-Christian origins it could assist in the recovery of an earlier, pre- Masoretic text that would be closer to the original than [the Masoretic Text]. But today we recognize that [the LXX] neither was nor was intended to be a precise scholarly translation." (The Text of the Old Testament, pp 63-64). Later, Wurthwein quotes Dr. G. Bertram as writing, "The Septuagint belongs to the history of Old Testament interpretation rather than to the history of the Old Testament text. It can be used as a textual witness only after its own understanding of the Old Testament text has been made clear." (Ibid. pp. 67-68).
Therefore we can see that the LXX does not shed light on the text of the original Hebrew, but only on how some interpreted the Hebrew text. Further, we also can see that the Biblical guardians of the Old Testament, the Jews, were not in favor of the readings found in the LXX, nor in the additions it made to the Hebrew canon of scripture. Therefore, we can see the wisdom and spiritual guidance provided for the translators of the KJV in using the Hebrew Masoretic Text for their work on the Old Testament, as well as their use of the Traditional Greek Text for the New Testament. Thus in both they were using the Text Received (Textus Receptus).
QUESTIONS FROM STUDENTS:
"What is King James Onlyism?"
It often depends on who is asking the question and what they mean when they refer to those who believe the KJV to be the preserved word of God for the English-speaking people. I am called, for example, a KJV only advocate. I am told that KJV only advocates such as myself believe the KJV is inspired. I have been told that other KJV only advocates, such as Dr. Ruckman, believe the KJV is inspired. However, I have never read where Dr. Ruckman has stated such, and I know for a fact that I do not believe it. However, this does depend on what someone means by the term. To me, Biblical inspiration as given in scripture, is something given first hand. It was limited to Biblical writers and not copyist and translators. Inspiration has to do with what " is given" (2 Tim. 3:16), as holy men of God were moved by the Holy Ghost (2 Peter 1:21).
The problem in understanding what was said is because those who misconstrue it do not differ between inspiration and preservation. Inspiration has to do with the producing of scripture. Preservation has to do with the keeping of scripture. It is God who inspired His words, and it is God who keeps them.
James White lists five different groups of these he refers to as KJV only advocates (The King James Only Controversy pp.1-4). I do not find myself in any of these groups listed. Since I cannot speak for others, I am left to speak only for myself in defining what I am. I believe that God gave His words without error by inspiration. I believe that God preserved these words and watched over them to keep them without error throughout all generations since their written inception. The KJV, I believe, is the preserved word of God for the English-speaking world since 1611 and stands without error. When I read the KJV I believe that I am reading the very words of God which He has provided for me through His care in keeping His words, so that they are in fact the very words of God. So if by King James Only one means that only the King James Version is the preserved words of God without error for those who speak English since 1611, I would have to say that I am of that group.
However, some have concluded that KJV Onlyism means that this is the only translation KJV advocates use or that there was no word of God before 1611. From this comes such false arguments as stating that Psalm 12:6-7 does not refer to the KJV. Brother White is quick to point this out in stating, " My first question is, 'Where does Psalm 12 say that the words of the LORD refer to the King James Version of the Bible?'" (Ibid. p. 243). Of course, it does not. It refers to the fact that God said He would preserve His words, of which the KJV is evidence that He has done so even to this day.
The evidence has been provided of the preservation of God's words long before 1611. And, if one insists that being a KJV only advocate limits the Bible only to English-speaking people, the simple fact is that the preserved word of God was here before 1611 and in other languages besides English. Any statement otherwise is a perversion of the facts given and a misrepresentation of those who support and believe the KJV.
Nor does my belief in the KJV as the preserved word of God prohibit me from reading additional translations, both in English and other languages. I have freely used modern versions to support a reading in a text and I have often read from modern versions for one reason or another. If someone wishes to use a modern version, they are free to do so. I believe what the translators of the NIV said about their version, that it was made by imperfect men and would undoubtedly fall short of its goal. I think that the NIV, as all Bible translations, contain the word of God and can be used by God. This, however, does not free God from His obligation to keep and preserve his words, to keep them incorruptible, as He promised. I believe that the KJV is a fulfillment of that promise.
The Biblical approach by the Apostles differs from that of the modern textual critic. Their attitude in the citation of scripture is one of "thus sayeth the Lord," and, "it is written." Not "the older manuscripts read," or "a better translation would be." They believed that the scriptures of both testaments were not only divinely inspired but kept and preserved by the guiding hand of the living Lord. They also warn against those who would change and corrupt the word of God. And that the purpose of those who would do so was to make merchandise of the believers faith. The Bible, to the Apostles, is incorruptible (1 Pet. 1:23) in spite of the many who would seek to corrupt it (2 Cor. 2:17).
THE BELIEVERS IN ANTIOCH
The Church at Antioch has a noteworthy position in scriptures. It is the first place where the born- again believer is called a Christian, "And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch." (Acts. 11:26). It is also interesting to see that where both Antioch and Alexandria are mentioned in the same passage, Antioch is listed as a place of service, while Alexandria is listed as a place of disruption.
And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of ANTIOCH: Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them. And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith. And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people. Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and ALEXANDRIANS, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen. And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake. (Acts 6:5-10)
The Bible-believer finds this rather interesting in that the line of modern translations has its source in Alexandria, while the Traditional Text has its source in Antioch of Syria where the disciples were first called Christians. And, as we examine the Biblical text of these believers in Antioch we find that it reflects the same text as found in our English Authorized Version of 1611.
IGNATIUS (d. 107 AD)
Saint Ignatius (or Theophorus) was the bishop of Antioch, Syria. Historian Will Durant states that with Ignatius, "began the powerful dynasty of the post-apostolic Fathers " (The Story of Civilization, Vol. III, p. 611). Additionally, Church Historian Earle Cairns informs us that Ignatius "was arrested by the authorities because of his Christian testimony and sent to Rome to be killed by beasts in the imperial games." (Christianity Through the Centuries, Zondervan Pub., 1967 ed., p. 78). While on route to his martyrdom, this wonderful saint wrote seven letters, six to different churches (Ephesians, Magnesians, Trallians, Romans, Philadelphians, and Smyrnaeans), and one epistle to Saint Polycarp.
Ignatius was both sound in doctrine and spirit. He knew several of the Apostles personally and sought to follow their examples as believers in Christ. Dr. Michael Green states, "There was a conscious attempt by Ignatius and Polycarp, for instance, to imitate (St.) Paul. . ." ( Evangelism in the Early Church, Eerdmans Pub. 1970, p.133). Green further states that, "Something indeed of St. John's theology can be traced through Ignatius. . ." ( Ibid. ). And, in his epistle to the Romans, Ignatius himself makes reference to both Peter and Paul stating, "I do not, as Peter and Paul, command you." (2:6). Paul wrote, "Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me." (1 Cor. 4:16) Ignatius lived this admonition.
His doctrine is Biblical. The Trinity is proclaimed by Ignatius. He states that Christians should be found, "in the Son, and in the Father and in the Holy Ghost" (Magn. 4:4). He refers to Christ as, "our God" (Roma.1:13 and Smyr. 1:2), thus repeatedly affirming the Deity of Jesus Christ. Concerning Biblical salvation he writes, "Let not man deceive himself; both the things which are in heaven and the glorious angels, and princes, whether visible or invisible, if they believe not in the blood of Christ, it shall be to them to condemnation." (Smyr. 2:12). His personal profession of faith is found throughout all of his epistles, but eloquently and scriptually stated in his letter to the Trallians: "Stop your ears therefore, as often as any one shall speak contrary to Jesus Christ; who was of the race of David, of the Virgin Mary. Who was truly born and did eat and drink; was truly persecuted under Pontius Pilate; was truly crucified and dead; both those in heaven and on earth, being spectators of it. Who was also truly raised from the dead by his Father, after the same manner as he will also raise up us who believe in him by Christ Jesus; without whom we have no true life." (Trall.2:10-12).
Ignatius reflects a Christian attitude in regard to others and rejects the anti-Semitism that was reflected by the heretic Marcion, and even from some of the comments later made by Origen. Instead, Ignatius agrees with scripture and brakes the walls of racism in a day when the Jews were despised by the Gentile nations. He writes, "That he (Christ) might set up a token for all ages through his resurrection, to all his holy and faithful servants, whether they be Jew or Gentiles, in one body of his church." (Smyr. 1:6).
As he reflects his death, Ignatius writes, "For I am the wheat of God and I shall be ground by the teeth of the wild beasts, that I may be found the pure bread of Christ. Rather encourage the beasts that they may become my sepulcher; and may leave nothing of my body; that being dead I may not be troublesome to any." (Roma.2:3-4). In fact, he seemed concern that the believers in Rome would somehow try to stop his execution and states, "Suffer me to be food to the wild beasts; by whom I shall attain unto God." (Roma. 2:2). He firmly proclaims, "I would rather die for Jesus Christ, than rule to the utmost ends of the earth." (Roma.2:14).
Sadly, the scriptural citations made by Ignatius are often ignored or belittled as unimportant in the study of textual criticism. Geisler and Nix simply write, "Although (Ignatius) did not give references to particular citations from the Scriptures, he did make many loose quotations and allusions to them." (A General Introduction to the Bible, p.100). It is true that Ignatius does not cite chapter and verse (nor did any of the other Church Fathers or Apostles for that matter) and often simply makes allusions. However, it should be remembered that he was not writing a theological dissertation. He was on his way to be martyred and was most likely citing scriptures from memory. What is often overlooked is the content of these Biblical citations and allusions. In reference to his writings, Souter says, "[It] hardly [has] any bearing on the choice between variants in the passages of the New Testament." (The Text and Canon of the New Testament, p.76). With this brief statement, the writings of Ignatius are dismissed as having no impact on the study of textual criticism. Perhaps this is because the Biblical citations used by this early Church Father does not disagree with the text of the Authorized Version. In fact, the text of Ignatius reflects the reading found in the Traditional Text.
An example of this is found in Ignatius' letter to the Ephesians. It will be remembered by the student that there is a textual variant of great importance found in 1 Timothy 3:16. The KJV reads, "God was manifest in the flesh." Modern versions, using the Alexandrian Text, read, "He was revealed in flesh" (NRSV). There is a difference between saying He and saying God . The KJV makes a clear proclamation of the Deity of Jesus Christ in this verse. What is important here is that Ignatius apparently used a Bible which reflected the reading found in the KJV. He writes, "There is one physician, both fleshly and spiritual; made and not made; God in the flesh" (Ephe. 2:7) and "God himself being made manifest in the form of a man." (Ephe. 4:13). Ignatius uses the Greek word for God (Theos), and for flesh (sarki) in the first citation and the Greek word for manifest (using the form phanerosas) in the second, as does the Greek text of the KJV in 1 Timothy 3:16. If Ignatius had used the Greek word ieos (he), the supporters of modern versions would no doubt have claimed that Ignatius was using a Greek text which supported the reading found in the Alexandrian and Western line of manuscripts. The fact is that Ignatius' text reflects the Traditional reading, found in the KJV and the Majority Text, and not the Alexandrian found in Codices Vaticanus, Sinaiticus, and modern translations.
It is also interesting to read the phraseology of Ignatius in reference to the person of Jesus Christ. Over and over he refers to the Second Person of the Trinity as the "Lord Jesus Christ." This full use of the title and person of Christ is found in almost every letter of Ignatius and used several times over in those letters. I state this because the student will remember that James White (and others who would call the Traditional Text a fuller text) raised a theory called the expansion of piety. Modern versions often shorten the phrase to Christ, or Jesus Christ, or Lord, while the KJV more often uses the whole phrase, Lord Jesus Christ. It would seem from the writings of Ignatius that he had been influenced by the fuller text as it is found in our KJV.
POLYCARP (70 to 155 AD)
Polycarp was not only the Bishop of Smyrna but also, "had special opportunities to know the mind of the disciples because he had been a disciple of (St.) John." (Cairns, Christianity Through the Centuries, p.79). His martyrdom in 155 AD is recorded by both Eusebius in his Ecclesiastical History and John Foxe in hisBook of Martyrs. He was first placed at the stake to be burned, and he sang hymns waiting for the fire to consume him. However, the fire burned around him but did not burn Polycarp. He was then ordered to be stabbed until dead and his remains burned.
The witness of Polycarp is important in the study of textual criticism for the following reasons. First of all, he cites about sixty New Testament quotations in his one letter, Polycarp to the Philippians. Over half of these are citations from Paul's epistles, showing his acquaintance with the Apostle and the acceptance of Paul's letters as scripture in the early Church. Second, he was a contemporary of the Apostles and would have had access to either the original writings of the Apostles or copies that were written shortly after the originals. Thirdly, like Ignatius, the Biblical citations do not differ with the Traditional Text in favor of the Alexandrian or Western readings. In fact, even more so than Ignatius, the citations of Polycarp reflect the readings found in the Traditional Text as it differs with the Alexandrian Text.
Most of what Polycarp writes deals with Christian living, yet he does state his profession of faith early in his letter: "knowing that by grace ye are saved; not by works, but by the will of God through Jesus Christ" (Phili. 1:5), and, "he that raised up Christ from the dead, shall also raise up us in like manner" (Phili. 1:8). He makes a good profession and stands against the dualism of the Gnostics in stating:
"For whosoever does not confess that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh, he is Antichrist: and whoever does not confess his suffering upon the cross, is from the devil. And whosoever perverts the oracles of the Lord to his own lusts; and say that there shall neither be any resurrection, nor judgment, he is the first-born of Satan. Wherefore leaving the vanity of many, and their false doctrines; let us return to the word that was delivered to us from the beginning" (Phili. 3:1-3).
1 John 4:3
The Biblical quotation from Polycarp to confront Gnosticism is a citation from the Traditional Text. 1 John 4:3 reads, "And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world." The Alexandrian line omits the phrase "is come in the flesh" in verse three. The verse deals with the lack of confession, not the Believer's profession that is found in verse two. As quoted above, Polycarp writes, "whosoever does not confess that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh," matches what John wrote, "And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh." In fairness to the verse, some have suggested that Polycarp is really citing 2 John 7 and not 1 John 4:3. This, however, does not seem to be the view of Dr. J. B. Lightfoot. In his book, The Apostolic Father, Lightfoot cites the quotation is from 1 John 4:3 (Macmillan and Comp. Pub., p. 171), as does Archbishop Wake in his translation of Polycarp (The Lost Books of the Bible, World Pub., p. 194). Their observations are well taken as that the Greek of 1 John 4:3 matches the Greek citation of Polycarp. However, the Greek of 2 John 7 does not match Polycarp. The Greek phrase as it stands in the Traditional Text reads, "en sarke eleluthota" (in flesh come). Polycarp writes, "en sarke eleluthenai" (in flesh come). Both use the same tense of the Greek participle. 2 John reads, "epxomenon en sarki" (coming or is come in flesh). The Greek tense differs from that of Polycarp. 1 John and Polycarp use the perfect tense, 2 John uses the present tense. English does not have a perfect tense, but in Greek in means a present state resulting from a past action (i.e. because Christ came in the flesh, He is now in the flesh). It is therefore clear in both the Greek and English that Polycarp was citing 1 John 4:3, and that his citation matches the KJV and opposes the modern versions which omit this phrase.
Polycarp writes, "and must all stand before the judgment seat of Christ; and shall every one give an account of himself." (Phili. 2:18) The allusion comes from Romans 14:10 which reads, "But why doest thou judge thy brother? or why doest thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ." (KJV) This passage, therefore, confirms the Deity of Christ because verse twelve informs us that, "every one of us shall give account of himself to God." (KJV). The Alexandrian line changes "judgment seat of Christ" to "judgment seat of God." This not only leave out the cross- reference concerning the Deity of Christ, but it is obviously not the Greek text used by Polycarp in the very first few years of the second century. Both the KJV and Polycarp use the Greek word "Kristou" (of Christ). The Alexandrian line of manuscripts, which stand in the minority, use the Greek word "Theou" (of God). Since this passage is the only passage that speaks of the judgment seat of Christ, Polycarp must have received his reading from a text which read like the Traditional Text. This again shows that the older reading, closest to the original autographs, reads like that found in the majority of Greek and other manuscripts as translated in the KJV.
Here we find the phrase, "which is the mother of us all" in the KJV. The Alexandrian line of manuscripts simply reads, "and she is our mother." (NIV). The Greek word "panton" (of us all) is omitted from the Alexandrian manuscripts, while the majority of all Greek manuscripts has it in them. Polycarp writes, "which is the mother of us all" and uses the Greek word "panton." Geisler and Nix list Galatians 4:26 as a citation by Polycarp (A General Introduction to the Bible, p.349), as does Lightfoot (The Apostolic Fathers, p. 169). Where did Polycarp get the phrase if not from the Traditional Text? Plainly, the disciple of St. John, and friend of St. Paul, was using a Greek text like the Traditional Text.
The Expansion of Piety
Once again, the expansion of piety theory falls short in the light of Polycarp's Epistle to the Philippians. In this short letter consisting of only four chapters, Polycarp uses the triune phrase, "Lord Jesus Christ" seven times (1:1, 2, 3, 6; 4:10, 11, 20). This seems rather amazing since the Apostle Paul in his letter to the Philippians used the phrase only three times (1:2; 3:20; 4:23). However, in his letter to the Ephesians, Paul uses "Lord Jesus Christ" the same number of times as Polycarp. In this light, the thought that the multiple use of "Lord Jesus Christ" from a shorter version was added by the Byzantine monks around 1,000 AD seems rather far fetched. It is obvious from Polycarp that the expanded phrase was in common use at the time of the New Testament and shortly thereafter. Further, because of the expansion used by Polycarp, it seem more likely that this was the common expression used in reference to our Lord. Not only is the theory invalid, but the common text used by first century Christians reflected that which would be found in the Traditional Text throughout the centuries. Thus the admonition found in 1 Thessalonians 2:13 remains intact.
In addition to the Traditional Text, we have many early and old translations of the Bible which are either classified as Byzantine (i.e. Traditional Text) or have readings which differ from the Alexandrian Text in favor of the Traditional Text. After Kurt and Barbara Aland point to around 180 AD as the beginning of when these translations began, they state, "It must be emphasized that the value of the early versions for establishing the original Greek text and for the history of the text has frequently been misconceived, i.e., they have been considerably overrated." ( The Text of the New Testament, Eerdmans Pub., 1987 p.182). Yet, one could say the same about copies of copies of copies of Greek manuscripts as well. Perhaps the concern stated by the Alands is because so many of the early translations have readings which match the KJV and its Majority Text in Greek. An early translation must have had a source. If the early translation has a certain reading, and later Greek manuscripts have the same reading, we can conclude that the source for the early translation had the reading as well, even if we no longer have that source.
There are several old translations which are called Syrian because they are in the Aramaic language. The history of the Syrian versions is a rich history, much like the history of the Latin translations. Dr. Bruce Metzger writes, "Until the middle of the nineteenth century the Peshitta held the field as the earliest Syriac version of the New Testament." ( The Early Version of the New Testament, Clarendon Press, 1977 p. 36). This is important because Antioch in Syria, the birth place of the word Christian, produced an early translation of the Bible which agreed with the Traditional Text.
The Peshitta (which means clear or simple) is the standard Syriac version. Geisler and Nix state, "It is important to note at this point that the Peshitta was 'the authorized version' of the two main opposed branches of Syriac Christianity, the Nestorians and the Jacobites, indicating that it must have been firmly established by the time of their final cleavage, well before the fifth century." ( A General Introduction to the Bible, p.318). In fact, the chart they give on page 265 of their book dates the Peshitta close to the year 200 AD. They also note that the Peshitta was, "brought into conformity with the Byzantine text type." ( Ibid., p.318). Thus the Peshitta bears testimony to the Traditional Text from which the KJV was translated. Aland justly states, "The Peshitta version as it is presented in the British and Foreign Bible Society edition is the most widely attested and most consistently transmitted of the Syriac New Testament versions. The Syriac church still preserves it and holds it in reverence in this form today." ( The Text of the New Testament, p. 190). In fact, the tradition of the Syrian church is that the Peshitta was the work of St. Mark while others claim the Apostle Thaddeus (Jude) translated it.
If the Peshitta does date to around 200 AD, or before, we have an answer to those who wonder about the text of the New Testament early in its transmission. James R. White asks, "If we were to transport ourselves to the year AD 200 and look at the text of the New Testament at that time, ignoring for the moment what was to come later, what would we find?" ( The King James Only Controversy, p.152). According to the Peshitta translation, we would find a text like the Authorized Version produced in 1611. This is confirmed by Souter who writes, "Thus it happens that the Peshitta Syriac rarely witnesses to anything different from what we find in the great bulk of Greek manuscripts." ( The Text and Canon of the New Testament, p.60). It is clear that early Christians, like Ignatius and Polycarp, did use a Bible with 1 Timothy 3:16, Romans 14:10; Galatians 4:26, and 1 John 4:3 reading just like the KJV, the Traditional Text, and the Peshitta.
THE THREE CAPPADOCIAN FATHERS
John Chrysostom was not alone in his use of the Traditional text. Basil of Caesarea (329-379 AD); Gregory of Nazianzus (330-389 AD) and Gregory of Nyssa (330-395 AD, the brother of Basil) used the same text line. These three Church Fathers are called the Cappadocian Fathers. These three men are noted for their strength in doctrine and opposition to the heresy of Arianism (which denied the Trinity). All three strongly supported the doctrine of the Trinity and were noted as strong theologians. All are also associated with the Orthodox Church of Constantinople. All three had Christian parents, and Gregory of Nazianzus' father was a bishop.
The Greek and Old Latin manuscripts used by these men reflect the text of the Traditional line. Souter states that their Greek text originated "probably in Constantinople" while the Latin "in North Italy." (The Text and Canon of the New Testament, p. 9). Souter lists the Gospel manuscripts of N, O, Sigma, and Phi, reflecting "the text used by the great Cappadocian Fathers. . .in the last third of the fourth century." (Ibid., p. 30). These manuscripts (N, O, Sigma, and Phi) are from the sixth century and reflect the readings found in the Traditional text.
It is little wonder then, that when we find differences between the Traditional text and the Alexandrian text, that the Cappadocian choose the readings as they are found in the KJV and not the ones reflected in the NIV or NRSV. The following are a few examples.
Matt. 17:21 is omitted in the NIV and NASV, but is in the KJV and supported by the Traditional Text and the Cappodocian Fathers.
Mark 1:2 the KJV reads "prophets" as does the citations of the Cappodocian Fathers. Modern versions choose the Alexandrian reading of "Isaiah the prophet" and then quote form Malachi.
Mark 16:9-20. The longer ending, as it is found in the KJV, is also in the Greek Gospels of the Cappodocian Fathers.
Luke 2:14. While the Nestle Text of the Alexandrian line renders the phrase as, "men of goodwill," the KJV and the Cappodocian Fathers render it as, "good will toward men."
John 5:4 is omitted in the Alexandrian Text, but found in the Greek text of the Cappodocian Fathers.
This siding with the Traditional Text is not just limited to the Gospels, although there are several examples. It should also be noted that, like Ignatius, the Cappodocian Fathers used God (Gk. Theos) in 1 Timothy 3:16.
THE CHURCH UNDER FIRE
Throughout the centuries there have been those strong in the faith who were willing to suffer and die for the cause of Christ. Their histories have been written with honor by men like John Foxe in his book of Martyrs; their names have been reduced to that of heretic by those who persecuted them. Among such groups of Bible-believers were the Paulicians, the Bogomiles, the Anabaptists, the Waldenses, and the Albigenses to name a few. They are mentioned here only because the scriptures they used were those of the Traditional Text or a translation which reflected the readings found in the Traditional Text. They received the word of God, as it is in truth the word of God, and it worked effectually within them (1 Thess. 2:13).
Most of those mentioned above were and are labeled as heretics in order to justify their mass murders. A case in point would be the Albigenses, so named because they originated in southern France near the old city of Albiga. To this date they are listed in most histories of the Church as a heretical sect which practiced dualism. It has been claimed that the Albigenses believed in two gods, one good and one evil, much like the old Gnostic heresy. However, this is simply not the case. Historian for the American Baptist Converntion, Henry C. Vedder, writes, "The (Roman) church was not at all careful to distinguish between them, and they were often included under the name of Albigenses in one sweeping general condemnation. That name, however, does not properly denote the evangelical heretics, who never confounded themselves with these dualistic heretics, and indeed sympathized with them as little as they did with Rome." (A Short History of the Baptist, Judson Press, 1907, p.103).
The true "heresy" of these Bible-believing French folk was that they would not conform to Rome and its teachings. They believed each Christian had the right to read the Bible in their own language for themselves. Pope Innocent III declared war on them and began what was infamously known as the Inquisition. Edward Peter notes, "The severity and frequent brutality with which the northern French waged the Albigensian Crusade led to the killing of many heretics without formal trial or hearing." (Inquisition, The Free Press; 1988, p. 50). In this dark period of time, unnamed thousands died at the hand of Rome because they wished to place the Bible into the hands of the common man.
Catholic historians and theologians today argue that this simply is not so. The Right Reverend Henry Graham (Where We Got The Bible: Our Debt to the Catholic Church ), Rev. Dr. L. Rumble, and Fr. Charles Carty (Bible Quizzes To A Street Preacher ) state that most people in the Middle Ages could not read, so there was no need for the Bible in the language of the common man because he could not read it if he had it. They further state that since those who could read all read Latin, there was no need to have any other translation other than the Latin Vulgate by Jerome. This, however, by no means justifies the mass torture and murder of thousands of people. Additionally, it overlooks several simple truths. First, just because someone could not read for themselves would not stop them from wanting a Bible in their own language so someone else could read it to them. If there were only Latin Bibles, those who could not understand Latin were without hope of even hearing the word of God. Second, history has shown that once the Bible is translated into the language of the people, the people learn to read. Time and again the Bible has been the basic text book for individuals to learn their own language in written form.
Another example are the Waldenses, who are often linked in history with the Albigensians. Some have suggested that the name Waldenses came from Peter Waldo, around 1176 AD. Waldo was a Bible-believing merchant turned preacher. Others believe the name comes from the Italian or Spanish word for valley, thus stating they originated in the valley region of northern Italy. Regardless of where they derived their name, they strongly stood against many of the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.
Catholic and Orthodox historians David Knowles and Dimitri Obolensky list for us the "heresies" of which the Waldenses were guilty: "[The Waldenses] became definitely heterodox, regarding the Bible as the supreme authority and denying the real presence in the Eucharist. . .the Waldenses, the 'proto-Protestants', continued to influence religious history throughout the middle ages and despite persecution remain in existence at the present day." The Christian Centuries, Vol. 2, Paulist Press, 1969, p. 369). What they did believe in was that the Bible was the final authority for the born-again believer. That any one who was called of God could preach the word without authority from Rome. That salvation was not by works, but by the grace of God alone, and that baptism should follow belief and not applied to infants. Thus, the principles of 1 Thessalonians 2:13 were established in their lives.
Knowles and Obolensky further state, "Already in Milan and Lyons the Humiliati and the Waldenses were beginning to show the characteristics of their class: desire for associations of prayer and good works outside the liturgical framework; love of preaching and Bible-reading in the vernacular; dislike of . . .(the) sacramental aspects of religion; disputes about the Eucharist; praise of poverty; impatiences of hierarchical control." (Ibid., p.224.) In addition they "believed that every man should have the Bible in his own tongue and that it should be the final authority for faith and life." (Cairns,Christianity Through the Centuries, p.248). Thus, they copied and translated the Bible in the vernacular and freely published these manuscripts. Therefore, their aid in using the Traditional Text and providing vernacular translations of it must not go unnoticed in the Biblical study of textual criticism.
Because of Believers like the Albigenses, the Waldenses and others, the Bible was translated into Provencial or Old French, Old High German, Slavonic, Old and Middle English, and other languages as well as Old Latin and Gothic. Through them, and others, we can see the Traditional Text not only translated into the language of the people, but translated into the lives of those who read it.
One such translation is the West Saxon Gospels which date to this period of time. This is the oldest version of the Gospels in English (that is in Old English which differs from that which we use today). The following example comes from Luke 15:16 and shows that this version of the common man followed the Traditional Text which later produced the Authorized Version.
The subtle difference comes from the variance between the two line of manuscripts. The Greek Textus Receptus reads, "gemisai ten kailian autou apo" (to fill his belly with). The United Bible Societies' Text reads, "xortasthenai ek" (fed out of). This reading is supported by P75, Vaticanus, and Sinaiticus. All the Byzantine manuscripts, most Old Latin manuscripts, the Peshitta, and the Armenian, support the Traditional Text. It is plan from the reading of the West Saxon Gospels which one they follow. The words "wambe gefyllan" mean "stomach filled" which matches the text of the KJV.
THE MAJORITY TEXT
By the Majority Text, we mean the Traditional Text which has been used by Bible-believing Christians throughout the centuries and is reflected in the majority of Greek manuscripts. This Text has also been called the Syrian Text, the Constantinople Text, and is usually referred to as the Byzantine Text. It is this text which produced what has commonly been called the Textus Receptus or Received Text. It was this type of Greek Text which underlined the Authorized King James Version. We have already seen that this text type was used by early Christians and was the basis for early translations. It is the text which has predominated the history of Bible based Christianity and, for that matter, the majority of Christendom throughout the ages.
The main objection to the Majority Text is that it is a late text, of which most of the manuscripts within this textual family date after the ninth century. However, as we have already seen, the readings found within the Traditional Text date to manuscripts of the second century and some even to the first century. Additionally, the earliest citations made shortly after the completion of the New Testament reflect the readings found in the Traditional Text, and not the Alexandrian.
The question may be asked, Why do we have so many copies which have such a late date? There are several reasons of which I shall name three. First, because it is the Traditional Text. It was the one received by the early Church and the body of believers. Naturally, it would be the one to endure throughout the centuries and be massively copied and translated. Second, the reason why we do not have as many old manuscripts of this type is simply because it was the one used. Those manuscripts which were corrupted would not be used by the early born-again believers. They would see the corruptions and reject them. However, the Bibles which they did use would reflect that use. Just as the Bible you use today is quickly worn by use, so would the early manuscripts used by Bible-believing Christians. Third, the climate where the Traditional Text was formed is not as conducive for maintaining manuscripts as the climate in Egypt. Nevertheless, on this point it must also be noted that the origin and keeping of the New Testament did not lay in Egypt but elsewhere. Places such as Asia Minor, Palestine, Greece, and Rome would be where the New Testament originated and was kept. Alexandria originated none of the autographs nor was it the caretaker of any New Testament book or epistle. It therefore lays with the majority of manuscripts which were received and used by born-again believers (1 Thess. 2:13).
We now have over 5,000 manuscripts of the New Testament. A manuscript may be the whole New Testament, or it may only be a few books. At times it may even be a portion of a book or even a fragment. But all together we have well over 5,000 of these manuscripts. Dr. Zane Hodges, of Dallas Theological Seminary, has pointed out that "somewhere between 80-90 percent- -contain a Greek text which in most respects closely resembles the kind of text which was the basis of our King James Version." ("The Greek Text of the King James Version," found in Bibliotheca Sacra 124 (1968) p.335). Dr. Wilbur Pickering states, ". . . one may reasonably speak of up to 90% of the extant MSS belonging to the Majority text-type." (The Identity of the New Testament Text, Nelson Pub., 1980 ed., p.118).
The agreement within this vast host of manuscripts is astounding. It becomes even more astounding as one recognizes that the Traditional Text has been with us throughout the history of the New Testament Church, and that this text is represented in various locations throughout the world. Yet this text has few variances within the bulk of its witnesses. This is, of course, in direct opposition to the Alexandrian Text which is the minority text. The Alexandrian Text, with only a few Greek manuscripts "disagree as much (or more) among themselves as they do with the majority (text). For any two of them to agree so closely as do P75 and B is an oddity." (Ibid. ) In the Biblical definition of things, this is itself evidence that the Alexandrian Text is not the instrument God used in preserving His word. Namely, because there is a higher degree of variance within its own family based upon a much smaller portion of manuscripts. Since God is not the Author of confusion (1 Cor. 14:33), we can conclude that God is not responsible for this line.
It is from this wealth of manuscripts that men such as Desiderius Erasmus (1466-1536), Robert Stephanus (1503-1559), Theodore Beza (1519-1605), and Bonaventure and Matthew Elzevirs (1624) produced Greek Texts which were greatly used by God and His Church. The Greek Text produced by Erasmus was the text which Martin Luther used to produce his German Bible. This text, along with those produced by Stephanus, were the basis for the Italian Bible of Giovanni Diodati (1576-1649) and the French Bible of Louis Second. They were also used by Casidoro de Reina (1520-1594) and Cipriano de Valera (1531-1602) and their Reina/Valera Spanish Bible. These texts and translations, along with earlier English translations and the Greek Text of Beza, formed the basis of our KJV.
These texts and their translations did not go unrewarded by God. The Greek text of the Reformers was that of the Traditional Text. Every Protestant Church which was formed during this period of Church history, used the Traditional Text or a translation based on it. The underground Church which did not need to leave Rome because it was never a part of it, used the Traditional Text as its Bible. The Traditional Text produced reform and revival. It has proven itself to have worked effectually within the community of believers who have received it as the very word of God. And, consequently, it has affected history and culture itself. Dr. Fred Craddock and Dr. Gene Tucker of Emory University have corrected stated, "Translations of the Bible, such as the Authorized Version (or King James Version, 1611) and Martin Luther's translation of the Bible into German (first completed in 1534) not only influenced literature, but also shaped the development of languages." (cited from Encarta by Microsoft, 1995 ed).
Thus we have briefly seen the history of the Traditional Text and how God has used it throughout the Church. It is good to know the history of the period of time which produced the KJV. However that is not always easy to do. That is clear when we see how many scholars have been deceived by hoaxes like the LXX mythical letter of Aristeas, and the lengths to which deceivers like Origen and Constantine’s court theologian would go to promote such deceptions.
It is interesting to know that Aristeas, means PERFECFTION. Judging by how thoroughly and perfectly the hoax letter of Aristeas has deceived the scholars the Aristeas letter was well named as the PERFECTION hoax letter meant to deceive. With discoveries like the Chester Beatty Papyri and the Dead Sea Scrolls one begins to wonder if the faithless scholars and textual critics will ever learn. Paul said it well to Timothy - 2 Tim 3:7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Child of God, it is just so much better to KNOW that God kept His promise of Psalm 12:6-7, and that we have the literal tangible proof in the KJV Holy Bible. The deeper honest scholarship would dig on this whole issue, IF in the easy yoke of the Holy Spirit of Truth, the one superintending the Holy Bible project, the MORE Sure Word is seen to be so much more sure than any scholar, pope, rabbi, or pooh bah. Also, we will be looking more at the hoax Greek Septuagint of the Old Testament and FACT and TRUTH that its citations came from the New and not backward as the majority of textual critics would try to lead us to believe. We do have the proof and they certainly should have it too; but, they have been deceived and continue deceiving. The problem obviously is that they love not the truth and sadly probably do not have the Spirit of Truth to KNOW the truth. We will with just a little study find those missing verses the textual critics want us to doubt have solid evidence. There is BOTH solid textual and doctrinal support for them, solid as the integrity of our Yeshua Rock whose name is called the Word of God.
Let us think about Psalm 12:6-7 - The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever. KJV Only advocates prefer to speak of the "words of God" when they refer to the KJV, drawing from Psalm 12:6-7. There is solid evidence to prove that about the KJV just a there is solid evidence not to believe the NIV, RSV, NASV, or the NRSV are the words of the LORD. The profane bibles are translations made by men which reflect a certain line of manuscripts. Those profane bibles contain God's word only when they agree with it. But containing God's word and being the word of God are two different things. I do not believe that God's word has error in it, and I believe that the translations other than the KJV have error. What I DO believe is that God promised to keep and preserve His words. That is what the verse says. If I am to believe God, I must believe this verse. If I do not believe this verse, why should I believe anything else that God says? However, I do believe it and I have the assurance that God has not lied to me concerning the keeping of His words. Further, I believe that for those of us who speak English these preserved words are in the KJV. So we have a book I believe fulfills Psalm 12:6-7 and it can be held and tested. The scholars and textual critics that do not KNOW the KJV Holy Bible is that promised preservation and purification of God’s words simply are not studied to show themselves approved unto God on the subject, no matter how many men may approve them, they should be ashamed to say they are bible textual scholars and not know that.
Psalm 12:6-7 promises that God will preserve His WORDS. Some mockers might say - Where does Psalm 12 say that the'words of the LORD refer to the King James Version of the Bible? Of course, it does not. NSecondly, nowhere does this passage tell us how God will preserve His words. Does this mean He will do so by ensuring that no one can ever change the substance of those words, or does it mean that He will always make sure that there is one infallible version in one or more languages or translations? The passage does not even begin to address such things. And finally, noting the NIV translation, it is quite possible that verse 7 does not refer back to 'the words of the LORD' in verse 6, but instead to those in verse 5 of whom the Lord says, 'I will set him in the safety for which he yearns' (NKJV)." (pp. 243-244).
The passage in Psalm 12:6-7 in the NIV reads, "And the words of the LORD are flawless, like silver refined in a furnace of clay, purified seven times. O LORD, you will keep us safe and protect us from such people forever."
So, in his chapter on 'Questions and Answers' (chapter 10) his very first question, which is the one listed above, gives no answers at all. Instead, he raises more questions himself.
White's first question is, "Where does Psalm 12 say that the words of the LORD refer to the KJV of the Bible?" This is not an answer, it is a question. However, the answer is that it does not. If it had, then there would be no word of God until 1611. If there was no word of God until 1611, then Psalm 12 could not possibly be true because the claim is to keep the words of the LORD from THIS generation for ever. This generation predates 1611, however it also includes 1611. This is the difference between the Bible-believer and modern scholarship. Where is this preserved word today? Where was it at any time? Have we lost it or misplaced it? The modern scholar does not have an answer, at least not one that agrees with the verses found in Psalm 12. The "KJV Only advocates" (to cite Brother White) do not advocate the KJV only for everyone throughout Church history. The proof is abundant for all but those bound in vanity and willing ignorance and without faith. We advocate the KJV as the preserved word of God, for the English-speaking people, without any proven error.
His second question is what did God mean by "preservation"? Well, the best answer is He meant what He said. He said He would keep and preserve His words from this generation for ever. Either He did this or He did not. If He did, the modern scholar is at a loss to find where these preserved words are. If He did not, then He lied, which is impossible for God to do. Please notice that the text does not say that God would preserve the substance of His words, as White suggests. He says He will preserve His W-O-R-D-S. Now, did He or didn't He? Once again, the Bible-believer says He did and not only see the evidence that He did, but has a copy he can hold and read for himself.
The third question Brother White raises is one he plants in your mind. Is Psalm 12:7 translated correctly? Does it refer back to verse 5 and not verse 6? This is the same argument Dr. John Durham of Southeastern Baptist Seminary raised. Durham writes, "Verse 6 interrupts the development of the Psalm with an aside on the purity of the utterances of Yahweh. . .It is. . . an interruption and could very well have been added at a period subsequent to the composition of the Psalm." (Boardman Bible Commentary, pp. 192-193) So now it becomes either a mistranslation, an interruption, or an addition. Anything except for what it is, the promise of God to keep and preserve His Words. The mark of the Holy Ghost is to assure the Believer concerning the word of God (1 John 5:13). The mark of Satan is to question the word of God (Gen. 3:1).
Dr. G. Campbell Morgan agreed with the rendering. He writes, "The psalmist breaks out into praise of the purity of His words, and declares that Jehovah will 'keep them' and 'preserve them.' The 'them' here refers to the words. There is no promise made of widespread revival or renewal. It is the salvation of a remnant and the preservation of His own words which Jehovah promises." (Notes on the Psalms, Revell Comp., p.32).
Brother White quoted the NKJV to support his view that verse 7 refers back to verse 5 and not to verse 6. However, this is not how the NKJV is versed. In the Psalms, the NKJV lends itself to poetic form and groups verses together. It is very plain to see that the editors of this translation have grouped verses 6 and 7 together and not verses 5-7. Brother White would have done better to have stayed with the NIV instead of switching to the NKJV.
It should also be noted that the KJV is not alone in its translation of verse 7 as "them" instead of "us." The ASV of 1901 reads, "Thou wilt keep them, O Jehovah, Thou wilt preserve them from this generation for ever." Well, I guess that this only proves the old saying that even a blind squirrel can find a nut. :-)
ORIGEN (185-254 AD)
When Clement left Alexandria because of the persecution, Origen succeeded him as head master at the Catechetical School. Origen developed the allegorical interpretation of scripture. He took the Bible symbolically, yet what is clearly symbolic he took literally. For example, upon reading Matthew 19:12, he castrated himself. As a textual scholar, he produced the Hexapla which was a Bible containing six translations of the Old Testament, including the famous Septuagint (also known as the LXX). He considered the Old Testament Apocrypha as inspired scripture and included them in his Hexapla. Additionally, Origen considered some New Testament Apocrypha books as inspired, such as The Shepherd of Herman and The Epistle of Barnabas (see The Lost Books of the Bible, World Bible Publishers; pp.145 & 197).
The literal meaning of Scripture, argued Origen, overlay two deeper layers of meaning--the moral and the spiritual--to which only the esoteric and educated few could penetrate. He questioned the truth of Genesis as literally understood: he explained away as symbols the unpleasant aspects of Yahveh's (Jehovah) dealings with Israel; and he dismissed as legends such stories as that of Satan taking Jesus up to a high mountain and offering him the kingdoms of the world. (The Story Of Civilization, Vol. III; p.614)
Thus Origen held to this same doctrine as proclaimed by the heresy of Marcion.
Further, Durant quotes Origen as saying, "Who is so foolish as to believe that God, like a husbandman, planted a garden in Eden, and placed in it a tree of life. . .so that one who tasted of the fruit obtained life?" (Ibid., p. 614).
Additional doctrines of Origen can be seen in the following quotations from his work, The Fundamental Doctrines. As with Clement, the citations come form Jurgens' The Faith of the Early Fathers.
Jesus Christ: "Secondly, that Jesus Christ Himself, who came, was born of the Father before all creatures; and after He had ministered to the Father in the creation of all things,--for through Him were all things made."(p. 191). Thus Christ is a created being. This follows the teachings of the Gnostics, the Docetics, and is seen today in the teachings of the Jehovah's Witnesses.
"For it is just as unsuitable to say that the Son is able to see the Father, as it is unbecoming to suppose that the Holy Spirit is able to see the Son. It is one thing to see, another to know. To see and to be seen belongs to bodies. To know and to be known belongs to an intellectual being. That, therefore, which is proper to bodies, is not to be attributed to either the Father or to the Son; but that which pertains to deity is common to the Father and the Son." (p. 193). Again, the influence of Gnosticism can be seen in this citation. This is the same heresy which John warns against in both 1st and 2nd John.
The Holy Ghost: "Third, they handed it down that the Holy Spirit is associated in honor and dignity with the Father and the Son. In His case, however, it is not clearly distinguished whether or not He was born or even whether He is or is not to be regarded as a Son of God." (p. 191). Thus, the Holy Ghost becomes one of the aeons of Gnosticism.
Salvation: "After these points, it is taught also that the soul, having a substance and life proper to itself, shall, after its departure from this world, be rewarded according to its merits. It is distend to obtain either an inheritance of eternal life and blessedness, if its deeds shall have procured this for it, or to be delivered up to eternal fire and punishment, if the guilt of its crimes shall have brought it down to this." (p. 191). This is teaching another gospel (Gal. 1:8) which claims salvation by works.
Restoration from Eternal Fire: "Now let us see what is meant by the threatening with eternal fire. . .It seems to be indicated by these words that every sinner kindles for himself the flame of his own fire and is not plunged into some fire which was kindled beforehand by someone else or which already existed before him. . .And when this dissolution and tearing asunder of the soul shall have been accomplished by means of the application of fire, no doubt it will afterwards be solidified into a firmer structure and into a restoration of itself." (p.196). Much like the teachings of Mormonism, Origen believed in restoration for those in eternal fire (hell).
The Sun and Stars: "In regard to the sun, however, and the moon and the stars, as to whether they are living beings or are without life, there is not clear tradition." (p. 192). Again, early Mormonism taught that the planets, moons, and stars were alive.
Here is a man of questionable doctrine. This is not a matter if differing interpretations of scriptures; this is a matter of false teaching. Like the current teaching of the Watchtower, Origen believed in the dualistic nature of Jesus Christ. Like the teachings of the Mormons, Origen believed in a restoration for those in hell, and wonders if the sun, stars, and moon have life. If someone had the beliefs of Origen, we surely would not be content to have him revising or editing our Bibles. Yet this is what has happened. And, if one does not believe that personal doctrine will interfere with translation, make a close examination of the NWT produced by the Watchtower. Or, for that matter, why do we classify translations of the Bible as *liberal* and *conserverative?* Does this not show that theological bias still enters into the process of current translations of the Bible? If it does so today, then it did so in the days of Origen as well.
Origen's position as a textual critic is unquestionable. Not only because of the Hexapla, but because of his many scriptural quotations. Origen was one of the most prolific writers of his day, writing over 6,000 items and books. In these he makes almost 18,000 quotations and allusions from the New Testament. His citations are both Alexandrian and Western in nature. Dr. Aland shows that Origen's scriptural citations are mostly Alexandrian just like modern translations of the Bible are (The Text of the Church, p. 139).
Further, we can see the influence Origen had on other manuscripts. One of the subscriptions in Codex Sinaiticus states, "Taken and corrected according to the Hexapla of Origen. Antonius collated: I, Pamhilus, corrected." (Souter, The Text and Canon of the New Testament, p.23). Pamhilus, along with Eusebius, was a disciple of Origen. Therefore, we can see the influence Origen had on Codex Sinaiticus as stated in a footnote of that codex.
EUSEBIUS (263-340 AD)
Eusebius Pamphili, Bishop of Caesarea, was a church historian and textual critic who was responsible for writing the Ecclesiastical History of the church in 325 AD. His work provides us with many accounts of what was occurring in the early church, and especially during the canonization of Scripture. However, as noted by Historian Will Durant, Eusebius sometimes glossed over some facts, as he did in his work on the Life of Constantine. Durant calls it, "honest dishonesty" (The Story of Cilvilzation, Vol. III; p.663) and says, "One would never guess from this book that Constantine had killed his son, his nephew, and his wife." (Ibid.) Additionally, Durant states that, "Some exaggeration may have crept into the report" (Ibid., p. 649) concerning Eusebius' account of early Christian martyrs. For example, in recording the martyrdom of Polycarp, Eusebius states that when Polycarp was stabbed that, "there came out a dove" from the wound.
He also produced a form of the Gospels dividing them into paragraphs and numbering them for cross-reference (they were not divided as we have verse and chapter divisions today in our Bibles, but did provide a basis of division). Concerning the canon of Scripture, Eusebius questioned the authencity of James, 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, and the book of Jude. In regard to 2 Peter, he noted, "But the so-called second Epistle we have not received as canonical, but nevertheless it has appeared useful to many" (Ecclesiastical History, Vol. I; p. 193). To Eusebius, these scriptures were good books, but not inspired.
Emperor Constantine ordered Eusebius to produce fifty copies of the Bible. Constantine stated these copies were to "be written on prepared parchment in a legible manner" (Geisler and Nix, A General Introduction to the Bible, p. 181). Some have suggested that the famous manuscripts Vaticanus and Sinaiticus were two of these fifty copies, and these two manuscripts provide the basis of many of the changes in modern translations today. This was the view of Tischendorf, Hort, and Souter as they comment on the subject. If this is true, than Eusebius not only produced the famous Alexandrian manuscripts, but also advocated a text type that supports this same line of manuscripts. And from the many citations of Eusebius, it is certain that he did favor the Alexandrian family.
Eusebius was influenced by Origen of Alexandria. He and Pamphilus "founded at Caesarea a library of biblical and patristic writings on papyrus rolls, the nucleus of which consisted of Origen's voluminous writings, especially his editions and interpretations of biblical books." (Souter, The Text and Canon of the New Testament, p. 23). Pamphilus was educated at Alexandria and was a disciple of Origen; Eusebius was Pamphilus' "pupil and protege" (Ibid. p.84). No doubt, the views and textual changes of Origen found their way into the textual work of Eusebius.
JEROME (340-420 AD)
Sophronius Eusebius Hieronymus, known to us as St. Jerome, was responsible for producing the Latin Vulgate. Pope Damasus requested Jerome to produce a new Latin Version of the Old and New Testament in 383 AD. Reluctantly, Jerome agreed knowing that his version would not be welcomed considering that Christendom had already begun to divided itself in regard to which line of manuscript, and which translation, best reflected the original autographs. In 405 AD Jerome finished the Latin Vulgate and gave the Roman Catholic Church its official Latin Bible.
Most textual scholars believe that Jerome revised the Old Latin manuscripts according to his knowledge of Hebrew and Greek. (Jerome was one of the first scholars to be fluent in both Biblical languages). However, we do not possess many Latin versions which predate the Vulgate of Jerome and what we do have are fragmentary. As illustrated in the citations of Tertullian, Alexander Souter wrote, "It is perfectly clear from references in Tertullian, who wrote at Carthage (mainly in Latin, but also in Greek) between AD 195 and 218, that Latin translations of at least some parts of Scripture existed in his time." (The Text and Canon of the New Testament, p.35). The vast majority of Old Latin manuscripts which we now possess were written after the Vulgate and are divided into two groups, African and European.
Jerome was influenced by the work of Eusebius. Again, Souter notes, "It would seem, therefore, that we must look to Egypt for the origin of (Codex Sinaiticus) also. St. Jerome at Bethlehem had a MS.(i.e. manuscript) closely related to (Sinaiticus), in St. Matthew's Gospel, as we learn from his references in his commentary on that Gospel." (Ibid., p. 23). Sir Frederic Kenyon agrees and adds, "[Jerome] did so with reference to the oldest and best Greek manuscripts he could find, most of which seem to have belonged to what we have called the Alexandrian family. Indeed, the Codex Sinaiticus is the Greek manuscript which most conspicuously agrees with the Vulgate." (The Story of the Bible, p. 110).
It should be noted, however, that Jerome was more willing to reach a compromise and not make as many changes to the text as one finds in the Alexandrian line. Kenyon continues and notes, "Jerome, however, more cautious than our own Revisers (i.e. the RV of 1881) was sparing in his alterations; he tells us himself that he often left passages untouched which he might have corrected, in order to preserve the familiar form, and only made changes where he thought them material." (Ibid.) This would account for several verses in the Vulgate which follow the Traditional text instead of the Alexandrian. This is also noted by Dr. Edward F. Hills in his book, The King James Version Defended, regarding the Vulgate as a possible "movement toward the Traditional (Byzantine) Text" (p.187).
One thing is certain; the Latin Vulgate of Jerome became the standard Bible of the Roman Catholic Church and remained so for centuries. It is a clear connection between the Alexandrian line of manuscripts and the Westcott and Hort theory of textual criticism which will be discussed shortly. Despite that it sometimes reads in favor of the Traditional text, it is an early official translation which supported the Alexandrian line, and only agrees with the Traditional text as a compromise. In 1546 at the Council of Trent, the Roman Catholic Church made the Vulgate the official Bible of Catholicism. As far as the Catholic Church was concerned, there was therefore no need for additional textual studies or translations in the language of the people. This was a Latin Church and it had its Latin Bible with the mass in Latin. For the centuries that followed, all that was necessary was the Vulgate. And this remained the position of the Roman Catholic Church until the 1960's with the Second Vatican Council.
TISCHENDORF (1815-1874 AD)
Constantin von Tischendorf is responsible for providing the Protestant world with two of the oldest known uncials, Codex Vaticanus and Codex Sinaiticus. These two manuscripts date somewhere between 325-350 AD. It is important to understand that both Codex Vaticanus and Codex Sinaiticus are two of the best examples of the Alexandrian line of manuscripts, and are responsible for a number of changes found in modern versions of the Bible. "These two manuscripts formed the basis of the text prepared by the 19th century scholars Westcott and Hort, and the parallel text used by the editors of the Revised Version." (Eerdmans' Handbook to the Bible, p.73). Tischendorf, along John Anthony Hort and later Alexander Souter, believed these two codices to be part of the 50 scriptures ordered by Constantine and produced by Eusebius.
Tischendorf "edited more New Testament documents and more editions of the New Testament than any other scholar (of his day)" (Souter, The Text and Canon of the New Testament, p.102). By the age of twenty-nine, he had already produced three editions of the Greek New Testament. Believing the Alexandrian line of manuscripts reflected the better readings, Tischendorf set off in search for additional manuscripts.
In 1844 he visited the monastery of St. Catherine located at Mt. Sinai. While there he "saw in a basket a number of leaves of vellum with fine and obviously very early uncial writing on them, which he was informed were about to be destroyed, as many similar leaves had already been." (Kenyon, The Story of the Bible, pp. 57-58). He was allowed to keep forty-three leaves which he noted were from the Greek Septuagint. He recognized that these were of the same line as Codex Alexandrinus, but about a hundred years older then that manuscript. A second visit to the monastery occurred in 1853 with nothing found. However on his third visit, in 1859, on the last night of his stay, Tischendorf was shown the codex which has come to be known as Sinaiticus. He was denied custody of the manuscript at that time. He went to Cairo to speak to the Superior who granted him the codex. A camel-rider was sent to the monastery and retrieved the manuscript, but it was not until nine months later, after Tischendorf paid a good sum, that he was given the codex. As the student recalls, Sinaiticus contains over half of the Old Testament and all of the New except for large passages such as Mark 16:9-20 and John 7:53-8:11, along with several other verses. It has the Old Testament Apocrypha laced within it as scripture and the New Testament Apocrypha books of the Epistle of Barnabas and the Shepherd of Hermas, also listed as inspired scripture.
Codex Vaticanus, which was known to have been in the Vatican Library since 1475, receives its name because it is the property of the Vatican. No Protestant minister or scholar was permitted to view this codex for four hundred years until a facsimile was produced by Rome in 1890. There were two exceptions to this rule. They are S.P. Tregelles, who viewed it in 1845 and reproduced a memorized copy of it. And Constantin Tischendorf who viewed it between 1843 and 1866. Vaticanus is missing Genesis 1:1-46:28; 2 Kings 2:5-7,10-13; Psalm 106:27-138:6; Mark 16:9-20; John 7:53-8:11; and Hebrews 9:14 to the end of Revelation. Both Sinaiticus and Vaticanus are of the Alexandrian line of manuscripts.
WESTCOTT AND HORT
Brooke Foss Westcott (1825-1901) and Fenton John Anthony Hort (1828-1892) produced a Greek New Testament in 1881 based on the findings of Tischendorf. This Greek NT was the basis for the Revised Version of that same year. They also developed a theory of textual criticism which underlined their Greek NT and several other Greek NT since (such as the Nestle's text and the United Bible Society's text). Greek New Testaments such as these produced the modern English translations of the Bible we have today. So it is important for us to know the theory of Westcott and Hort as well as something about the two men who have so greatly influenced modern textual criticism.
In short, the Westcott and Hort theory states that the Bible is to be treated as any other book would be. Sir Frederic Kenyon sets forth the idea as follows:
Where alternative reading exist he (i.e. the textual scholar) will therefore tend to choose the harder rather than the easier, the shorter rather than the longer, the reading that differs from that in another Gospel rather than one which coincides; because, if alteration has taken place, it is likely to have been in the direction of the easier, longer, and harmonized readings. Such seems in particular to be the character of the Alexandrian text. (The Story of the Bible, p.111).
The Bible is therefore looked upon as a naturalistic book without Divine intervention preserving the text from corruption. In fact, according to Kenyon, where the text does not harmonize with the rest of the Bible is probably the correct reading. In such logic we can see the seeds of humanism replacing the spirituality of the Bible.
Westcott and Hort believed the Greek text which underlined the KJV was perverse and corrupt. Hort called the Textus Receptus vile and villainous (Life and Letters of Fenton John Anthony Hort, Vol. I, p.211). They believed the Traditional text did not exist until the fourth century and was created by Lucian of Antioch as an act of the Church council to unify the Western and Alexandrian line of manuscripts. This mixing of the two lines and filling them with additional texts is called conflation. The manuscripts of Sinaiticus and Vaticanus are considered neutral by Westcott and Hort as stated in their book, The New Testament in the Original Greek. So, according to this theory, the text of the KJV is conflated by using both the Western and Alexandrian line, and adds to the Bible with its own additions. The manuscripts of Sinaiticus and Vaticanus, which is suppose to be a neutral text, would reflect what the original autographs said.
There are several problems with the theory. First, many of the early Church Fathers' citations reflect the Traditional text with the fuller readings long before the forth century. Second, there is no evidence that there ever was a council or even a conference of scholars in Antioch to produce this "conflated" text. Even Kenyon, who supports modern versions, wrote, "We know the names of several revisers of the Septuagint and Vulgate, and it would be strange if historians and Church writers had all omitted to record or mention such an event" (Handbook to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament, p.302). Thirdly, since God has told us that we are not to add to His word, it would be a strange thing indeed for Him to support a Greek line of manuscripts and bless an English translations of the Bible that added to His word. Yet the line of manuscripts which Bible-believing Christians have read, used, and believed for almost two thousand years is of the Traditional text. And no English translation has been so greatly used and blessed by God as the KJV has. If the KJV has so grossly added to the word of God as claimed by Westcott and Hort, why has God blessed it so richly for the past 400 years? Additionally, if Westcott and Hort are the fathers of modern textual criticism and the restorers of the true text, should we not know something of their beliefs to see if they are consistent with scripture? This would be harmonious with the teaching found in Matthew 7:17.
"I reject the word infallibility of Holy Scriptures overwhelmingly." (Westcott, The Life and Letters of Brook Foss Westcott, Vol. I, p.207).
"Our Bible as well as our Faith is a mere compromise." (Westcott, On the Canon of the New Testament, p.vii).
"Evangelicals seem to me perverted. . .There are, I fear, still more serious differences between us on the subject of authority, especially the authority of the Bible." (Hort, The Life and Letters of Fenton John Anthony Hort, Vol. I, p.400)
Dr. Wilbur Pickering writes that, "Hort did not hold to a high view of inspiration." (The Identity of the New Testament Text, p.212)
Perhaps this is why both the RV (which Westcott and Hort helped to translate) and the American edition of it, the ASV, translated 2 Tim. 3:16 as, "Every scripture inspired of God" instead of "All scripture is given by inspiration of God," (KJV).
Deity of Christ:
"He never speaks of Himself directly as God, but the aim of His revelation was to lead men to see God in Him." (Westcott, The Gospel According to St. John, p. 297).
"(John) does not expressly affirm the identification of the Word with Jesus Christ." (Westcott, Ibid., p. 16).
"(Rev. 3:15) might no doubt bear the Arian meaning, the first thing created.<<(Hort, Revelation, p.36).
Perhaps this is why their Greek text makes Jesus a created god (John 1:18) and their American translation had a footnote concerning John 9:38 "And he said, Lord I believe and he worshipped him." which said, "The Greek word denotes an act of reverence, whether paid to a creature, as here, or to the Creator." Thus calling Christ "a creature."
"The thought (of John 10:29) is here traced back to its most absolute form as resting on the essential power of God in His relation of Universal Fatherhood." (Westcott, St. John, p. 159).
"I confess I have no repugnance to the primitive doctrine of a ransom paid to Satan. I can see no other possible form in which the doctrine of a ransom is at all tenable; anything is better than the doctrine of a ransom to the father." (Hort, The First Epistle of St. Peter 1:1-2:17, p. 77).
Perhaps this is why their Greek text adds "to salvation" in 1 Peter 2:2. And why their English version teaches universal salvation in Titus 2:11 "For the grace of God hath appeared, bringing salvation to all men," (ASV).
"(Hell is) not the place of punishment of the guilty, (it is) the common abode of departed spirits." (Westcott, Historic Faith, pp.77-78).
"We have no sure knowledge of future punishment, and the word eternal has a far higher meaning." (Hort, Life and Letters, Vol. I, p.149).
Perhaps this is why their Greek text does not have Mark 9:44, and their English translation replaces "everlasting fire" [Matt. 18:8] with "eternal fire" and change the meaning of eternal as cited by Hort in the above quote.
"No one now, I suppose, holds that the first three chapters of Genesis, for example, give a literal history--I could never understand how anyone reading them with open eyes could think they did." (Westcott, cited from Which Bible?, p. 191).
"But the book which has most engaged me is Darwin. Whatever may be thought of it, it is a book that one is proud to be contemporary with. . .My feeling is strong that the theory is unanswerable." (Hort, cited from Which Bible?, p. 189)
"I wish I could see to what forgotten truth Mariolatry (the worship of the Virgin Mary) bears witness." (Westcott, Ibid.)
"The pure Romanish view seems to be nearer, and more likely to lead to the truth than the Evangelical." (Hort, Life and Letters, Vol. I, p. 77)
In defending Westcott and Hort, James R. White writes:
Anglican piety, especially in the context of the times in which Westcott and Hort lived, provided all sorts of ammunition for demonstration that neither of these men was a fundamentalist Baptist, a point that Westcott and Hort would certainly have admitted. The fact that the KJV was translated by 'baby-sprinkling' Anglicans does not seem to bother those who bring up Westcott and Hort, however." (The King James Only Controversy, pp. 122-123 fn).
It is one thing to have doctrinal differences on baby-sprinkling and perhaps a few other interpretations. It is another to be a Darwin-believing theologian who rejects the authority of scriptures, Biblical salvation, the reality of hell, and makes Christ a created being to be worship with Mary his mother. Yet, these were the views of both Westcott and Hort.
James R. White is correct in stating, "modern textual criticism has gone far beyond Westcott and Hort" (Ibid., p.122). While Westcott and Hort may be considered the parents of modern textual criticism, we must also recognize the efforts produced by their children. We have had several Greek New Testaments appear, such as the Nestle text, Aland text, and the United Bible Society's text all with various editions.
There have been several findings since the discovery of Vaticanus and Sinaiticus. Perhaps the most famous deals with textual criticism of the Old Testament with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Concerning the New Testament there is the John Rylands fragments known as papyrus 52 (P52), a Greek manuscript which some date between 117 and 138 AD. They were discovered in Egypt and contain five verses from the gospel of John. They now reside at the John Rylands Library in Manchester, England.
Sir Alfred Chester Beatty provided several papyrus manuscripts known as P45, P46, and P47. They date to around 250 AD or later and are a mixture of Western and Alexandrian readings. Also we have the findings of M. Martin Bodmer with P66, P72, and P75. These also date to around the same time as the Beatty manuscripts and have a mixture of Western and Alexandrian readings. Although with both, there are times when these papyrus "shows frequent independence" (A General Introduction to the Bible, p.270) and have Traditional text readings in them. Dr. Wilbur N. Pickering has provided us with statistical evidence by quoting Dr. G. D. Fee findings, which show that these manuscripts do support the Traditional line at times and stand in opposition to the Western and Alexandrian, information which the modern textual scholar somehow forgets to provide us with.
Pickering notes a comparison of John 1-14 and states, "P66 agrees with the TR (i.e. the Textus Receptus Greek text) 315 times out of 663 (47.5%), with P75 280 out of 547 (51.2%)" (The Identity of the New Testament Text, p. 56). He also noted that out of 43 places where all these manuscripts have the same passages of scripture, P45 agreed with the Traditional text 32 times, P66 agreed 33 times, and P75 agreed 29 times (Ibid. p. 55). This being the case, these manuscripts are a mixture of textual families.
Modern scholars are quick to point to these manuscripts as proof that the Alexandrian line is the oldest and closest to the original autographs. However, this is no surprise to the Bible-believing student as we are aware that corruption of scripture date much earlier then 200 AD. Even at the time of the Apostles, there were those who sought to corrupt the word of God. All these Greek manuscripts mentioned were discovered in Egypt and have more to do with Clement of Alexandria and Origen than the original autographs, and they show how textual critics of the second and third century were willing to alter the word of God.
BROTHER JIM'S CONCLUSION:
We have now discussed the hoax of the Septuagint and the corrupt Alexandrian text stream which has produced ALL the modern versions of the Bible. It was the Holy Spirit superintendence which is missing from the modern versions since 1611. If one will have faith based upon God's integrity, as a child knows to trust his father, we do know that we have the Word of God that we have the Word of God. Those using the modern bibles simply can NOT know that. The Authorized King James Version of 1611 is that God promised perfect bible in the KING's English. The First Word of the FIRST TEXTUAL CRITIC were - Yea, hath God said? To which the faithful child of God, using ONLY the KJV Holy Bible, may say BOLDLY by the Holy Ghost, YES, I KNOW GOD SAID SO IN THE HOLY BIBLE - IT IS WRITTEN. Alleluia Yeshua. Praise the Lord Jesus.
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