OriginalChristianity

Not Traditional, Original

The Marvelous Story of Esther, Absent From Early Canons of Scripture

The teaching in church this week centered on the inspiring story of Esther. In a nutshell when Xerxes was king of Persia the Queen was named Vashti. And in a moment of defiance Vashti refused the command of the King. After consulting with his advisers the king decided on a process to find a new Queen, and the beautiful Queen he chose was Esther. Esther had been warned of by her kinsmen Mordecai to not advise the King that she was a Jew because of animosity towards the Jews. As it turned out an Agagite named Haman conspired to get rid of all the Jews and in a thrilling story of bravery and courage Esther is instrumental in ridding the Jews of this direct attack, in elevating her kinsmen Mordecai and in providing for the welfare of all the Jews under Xerxes.  It is an amazing story of bravery, and deliverance.

As much as I love the story of Esther however I must report that there is considerable evidence that Esther, whether true or not, was not a book of the Old Testament according to at least some writings of the day.

Look at this quotation from you Eusebius’ church history:

Melito to his brother Onesimus, greeting! Since you have often, in your zeal for the Word, expressed a wish to have extracts made from the Law and the Prophets concerning the Saviour, and concerning our entire Faith, and have also desired to have an accurate statement of the ancient books, as regards their number and their order, I have endeavored to perform the task, knowing your zeal for the faith, and your desire to gain information in regard to the Word, and knowing that you, in your yearning after God, esteem these things above all else, struggling to attain eternal salvation. Accordingly when I went to the East and reached the place where these things were preached and done, I learned accurately the books of the Old Testament, and I send them to you as written below. These are their names: Of Moses five, Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Leviticus, Deuteronomy; Joshua the son of Nun, Judges, Ruth, four of Kingdoms, 1 two of Chronicles, the Psalms of David, Solomon’s Proverbs or Wisdom, 2 Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, Job; of the Prophets: Isaiah, Jeremiah, 3 the Twelve [minor prophets] in one book, Daniel, Ezekiel, Esdras. 4 From which also I have made the extracts, dividing them into six books.[i]

Notice in the above listing that the book of Esther is missing.

With that  again I have to say that it pains me to have to present this because to me the story of Esther has always been a thrilling and inspiring story. But, besides being our Savior, the Lord Jesus was also the greatest prophet ever and he said this about reading the Scriptures:

You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, (Joh 5:39 ESV)

While the story of Esther is certainly one of the Jewish people being saved at the time it holds the distinction of being one of two books (the other being Song of Solomon) that do not mention God.  It does not include any of the genealogy of the bloodline of our Savior. While Esther is a story of deliverance it doesn’t testify of jesus.   And as noted above it was left out of at least some of the early Christian centuries’ canons of Scripture.  Also throughout the centuries it has not been accepted universally.  Look at this quote from a website called patheos.com:

John Calvin did not include the book in his biblical commentaries and only referenced it once in the Institutes(see 4.12.17). Though he included it in his Bible, Martin Luther was highly ambivalent about it. “I am so great an enemy to . . . Esther, that I wish [it] had not come to us at all, for [it has] too many heathen unnaturalities,” he said in Table Talk 24. And in one exchange with Erasmus he said it “deserves. . . to be regarded as noncanonical.”[ii]

What this suggests is significant in a number of ways:

  1. the Canon of Scripture might not be as divinely inspired as some would have us believe.
  2. The statements of belief of many Christian churches today includes the statement that the 66 books included in the modern Christian Bible are divinely inspired, and the word of God. This is a relatively recent doctrine and not something that has consistently been believed throughout the ages.

I have said elsewhere in places on this website that many churches teach that they are the first century church living in the 21st century. But this is clearly not the case. There were at least some of the earliest church fathers who did not hold that Esther and some of the other books in the Bible were divinely inspired by God. And hundreds of years ago in the forming of the Reformation the founding reformers also challenged some of the books that current statements of belief propound to be true. In other words, churches in Melito’s time, in Luther’s time, in Calvin’s time would not have made the statement that the 66 books of the Bible are all divinely inspired pieces of the word of God.

It is vitally important to me to remember that the true word of God is not a book as much as it is the person of Jesus Christ. And it is helpful in recognizing that much of the disagreement among churches centers around a dogma that God authored the 66 books and the arguments that promote divisions weaken when we acknowledge that that statement of belief is a modern invention and not one held by the reformers nor the early Christians.

The faith of the early Christians as well as the reformers like Luther and Calvin was not based on the doctrine that the 66 books of the modern Christian bible are the word of God, and neither should ours be.

[i] The Face of the Early Fathers, William a Jurgens, volume 1, p.81. This is a quote by St. Melito of Sardes which is a fragment in Eusebius, history of the church, book 4, chapter 26. The estimated date of this citation is 170 AD.

[ii] http://www.patheos.com/blogs/joeljmiller/2013/06/youre-reading-the-wrong-book-of-esther/

August 20th, 2018 Posted by | Biblical Translation And Interpretation | no comments

Oral Transmissions of Religious Accounts Have Safeguards to Ensure Accuracy

I have heard people say they are suspicious about the accuracy of traditions that are passed down by word-of-mouth. Anyone familiar with the “telephone” game knows that in any given crowd if one person passes a sentence to another person and so forth, that the resulting sentence by the 10th or 20th person sometimes bears no resemblance to the original.  By this reasoning, a lot of people have discounted ancient oral traditions as being unreliable.

The passing of oral tradition, in reality, however, usually came with stringent safeguards. Nicholas Wade, in his book, The Faith Instinct, says,

“there are two reasons why some hunter gatherer religions may still reflect the ancient forms.

One is that many preliterate or primitive peoples place great importance on carrying out rites exactly as their forebears did. The justification of their rituals is that this is how they have always been performed. So religious practice is handed on with as much fidelity as possible. Among the Klamath and Modoc Indians of the northwest coast of America, certain myths may be recited only in the presence of three people who know the story, and can check the rendition for accuracy, and the myths may not be told by children less they garble them. These rules are reported to keep the myths intact over many generations.”[i]

(It is important to note the word myth as used here means “a traditional story, account, or history” as opposed to the other meaning of myth which is “a false belief”.)

This is very insightful.  Kids aren’t even allowed to recite the traditional accounts.  When the accounts are recited by adults a number of others have to be present to ensure the accuracy of the recital.  This looks like pretty good security.  This practice is not new; it is ages old.

I find this very reassuring.  Sure, unchecked retelling of events is going to get garbled as it passes from person to person, but I always thought it was foolish to think that people didn’t realize this and put safeguards in place to ensure accuracy.

Wade’s insights about how modern tribes ensure accuracy shows that oral traditions can be reliably transmitted.

[i] The Faith Instinct, Nicholas Wade, The Penguin Press, London, p. 99

October 2nd, 2014 Posted by | Biblical Translation And Interpretation | no comments

Codex Sinaiticus, World’s Oldest Bible, Available Online

Would it surprise you to know that the bible read in the fourth century was not the same as the modern bible?  Most of it is the same, but there are some surprising differences. Codex Sinaiticus is called the world’s oldest bible (earlier manuscripts were probably burned by persecuting Romans, or simply didn’t survive the ages.)   As such it gives us an amazing insight into what the bible was and how it has changed since then.  And it is available online at http://www.codexsinaiticus.org/en/manuscript.aspx.

But first a definition is in order. What is a codex?  A codex is a stack of pages bound together in a manner similar to the modern book form.  This is, of course, different from the roll form of document used in Hebrew worship.  Christians were among the first to use this style of document making.[i]

Codex Sinaiticus dates back to the 4th century. It is thought to be one of the 50 copies of the Bible commissioned to Eusebius by Constantine about 332 A.D.[ii] (Similarly, codex Vaticanus is thought to be another of the copies although it is not as complete.)[iii]

One of the first things you notice about this “bible” is that books are not exactly the same as modern versions, and the order is not the same.  The Pauline Epistles with Hebrews are between the Gospels and Acts.[iv] The Shepard of Hermas and The Gospel of Barnabas are listed after Revelation.[v] Glancing through the whole book you will find that the order of the books differs dramatically from the current order standard throughout both the Old and New Testaments.

The Shepard of Hermas was used as scripture by Iranaeus, Tertullain, Clement of Alexandria, and Origen.  The Gospel of Barnabas was called “catholic” by Origen, and Clement of Alexandria wrote a commentary on it.[vi]

The differences between Codex Sinaiticus and modern Greek texts are not just in the New Testament.  Sinaiticus includes 2 Esdras, Tobit, Judith, 1 & 4 Maccabees, Wisdom and Sirach, which now are part of what is now called the Apochrypha, but that distinction did not exist then.  In Old Testament times there is no evidence that there was any concept of a bible as a complete set of collection of authorized books, rather there were individual “books”, which in the Greek is “biblion”.  These were individually recognized as part of the Law and the prophets.  In ancient times this collection of books was called “ta biblia” (“the books”) which Latin speaking Christians shortened to the singular, the book or Bible.[vii]

Codex Sinaiticus is recognized as part of the Alexandrian family of texts.  It does not have some of the errors of the Received Text.  For example, compare these readings from Codex Sinaiticus with the forgeries talked about in Examples of Scribal Forgeries in the Bible:

and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. (Matthew 6:13)[viii]

And he said to them: This kind can come out by nothing but by prayer. (Mark 9:29)

[no verse] (Matthew 17:21)

[no verse] (Mark 16:9-20)

In these lay a multitude of sick persons, blind, lame, withered. (John 5:3, verse 4 is missing)

John 7:53 to 8:11 is missing

It is amazing to me that it took centuries for scholars to get the accepted text back to a form closer to Codex Sinaiticus.  In fairness, it wasn’t available to Erasmus and his successors when they first tried reconstructing a reliable Greek New Testament.  It was found in the late 18th century at the monastery of St Catherine in Sinai, hence the name “Sinaiticus”.

As far as Matthew 28:19, the reading is the full Trinitarian formula:

Go, make disciples of all nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 28:19)

Codex Sinaiticus is a fascinating bible.  I believe the above examples show that it is a better text than those used for the Received Text.  The order that the books are presented suggests loudly, to me at least, that the order of the books has been an arbitrary decision all along.  And likewise the additional books in both the Old and New Testaments, I think,  are a protest to the divine status given to the creation of the canon, as opposed to the divine “thus spake the Lord” terminology much more easily seen in and/or concerning the individual books of the Law and the Prophets.

[i] THE MAKING OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, Origin, Collection, Text & Canon, Arthur G. Patzia, InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, Illinois, 1995, p. 118-119
[ii] THE CANON OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, Bruce M. Metzger, Clarendon Paperbacks, Oxford, 1997, ISBN 0-19-826954-4, p. 207
[iii] ibid.
[iv] THE CANON OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, p. 295
[v] THE CANON OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, Bruce M. Metzger, Clarendon Paperbacks, Oxford, 1997, ISBN 0-19-826954-4, p. 65
[vi] THE CANON OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, p. 188
[vii] THE BOOKS AND THE PARCHMENTS, F F Bruce, Fleming H Revell Company, 1962, p. 11
[viii] This and all the readings are found on the website at http://www.codexsinaiticus.org/en/manuscript.aspx

© copyright 2011 Mark W Smith, All rights reserved.

April 17th, 2011 Posted by | Biblical Translation And Interpretation | no comments

More Manuscript Basics; Who, What, Where, and How Variant Readings are Evaluated and Rated

In More Manuscript Basics; Using a Textual Commentary, I discussed how the bible was transmitted up to the point where Greek New Testament editions were created, starting with Erasmus up until recent editions by the United Bible Society.  We finished by looking at an example of a textual variant in a textual commentary.

Next we will look the criteria that are used to determine which manuscript readings are preferable over others.

The most basic rule if we just had one simple series of copies would be that the oldest is the most reliable.  But that is not what actually pans out as scholars have discovered that sometimes a somewhat younger copy is actually a better choice if it is a reliable copy of an older copy than the oldest copy we have.  And as we saw in the last article, we have to account for the different families of texts, and how they have different tendencies that affect accuracy.  The Alexandrian is considered the most accurate, and the Byzantine is probably considered the least accurate family of text.  A younger Alexandrian text may be more reliable than an older Byzantine text because of the Byzantine family’s tendency to allow more scribal insertions.

Then there is the issue of early church father’s writings.  Sometimes they seem to be considered, and others, not.

So how are variant readings evaluated to get back to the original writing of the text?

The first thing you have to know is that is not an exact science. It is really based upon probabilities.  For example, since the Alexandrian family of texts have the least scribal additions, then it’s probable that an Alexandrian manuscript will be more accurate than a Byzantine text.  But it’s not guaranteed.  In the end, there is a certain amount of educated guessing on some variants.

Bruce Metzger includes the following observations about considering variants:

  • Every variant reading has to be considered by itself. In other words, just because other variants in the manuscript seem to be best served by using the Alexandrian reading does not mean that the one you are currently looking at does.
  • Manuscripts, in general, have less errors the older they are
    • besides the age of the document, the degree of care by this particular scribe, as well as the general condition of the type of text must be considered
    • Newer manuscripts can be more reliable than older ones if they are very good copies of even older manuscripts.
  • The more widespread the variant is in the different families of manuscripts, the greater the probability that it is accurate
    • The exception is that sometimes manuscripts in diverse geographical areas are really dependent on a common influence, for example, Tatian’s Diatesseron.
  • The total number of manuscripts supporting a variant does not count that much as it is possible that a great number of manuscripts may be copies of one single earlier manuscript.
  • Rather than use a count system, manuscripts are weighted in comparison.  For example, manuscripts that give a clearer reading should be weighted higher manuscripts with ambiguous or uncertain readings.
  • Generally more difficult to read variants are considered more accurate than variants with a smoother style as a known error made by scribes was to change the text to make it more readable. Obviously this would have exceptions, a single or relatively small number of difficult variants might be the result of a single scribal error in an earlier manuscript.
  • Shorter readings are probably more accurate than longer ones, except where homoeoarcton and homoeoteleution may have occurred or where the scribe may have deliberately omitted material that he considered objectionable. A scribe might object to something that looked to him that it had been added, changed, or was an obvious theological error in his mind.
  • Since it is a known, widespread scribal error to try to harmonize parallel passages, a variant in that situation that is the least harmonious should at least be considered as the most accurate.
  • The variant that is most consistent with the context of the text and the style of the author is likely to be given more weight.
  • The Gospels have a unique set of factors that must be considered:
    • the Aramaic background of Jesus’s teaching
    • the priority of the gospel of Mark
    • “the influence of the Christian community upon the formulation and transmission of the passage in question”[i]

Again, Metzger’s textual commentary, A TEXTUAL COMMENTARY ON THE GREEK NEW TESTAMENT, goes into more detail on these factors in the Introduction and I highly recommend getting the book to get a better understanding.  This article just gives an overview of this tedious and complex process.


[i] A TEXTUAL COMMENTARY ON THE GREEK NEW TESTAMENT, Bruce M Metzger, United Bible Societies, London New York, 1975 , p. xxviii

© copyright 2011 Mark W Smith, All rights reserved.

April 1st, 2011 Posted by | Biblical Translation And Interpretation | no comments

More Manuscript Basics; Using a Textual Commentary

In There are Numerous Variations in the Texts From Which We Get The Bible; Using an Interlinear Text To See Them, I give a very simple overview of the problems of transmission of Bible text over the ages.  The process of biblical textual study is actually more complex.  The Introduction to Bruce M. Metzger’s A TEXTUAL COMMENTARY ON THE GREEK NEW TESTAMENT gives a wonderful overview of this process and a substantial part of this article comes from that source. Anyone interested in really looking at this process should consider getting Metzger’s book as it gives much more detail, and offers great insight into the variant readings of verses of the New Testament.[i]

The books of the Bible were originally written on scrolls (rolled sheets) made of papyrus and parchment, and then copied by hand.  Manuscripts written around the time of Christ were in Uncial form characterized by large block letters. Later texts were written in a more cursive mostly lowercase form called miniscule.

Compared to other ancient writings the number of manuscripts with portions of the bible is huge.  There are over 5000 Greek manuscripts of the New Testament alone.  Many of these manuscripts are fragments.

While having so many manuscripts is a wonderful affirmation of the availability of evidence regarding the Bible and what it says, it also brings its own set of challenges.

The first challenge is what I like to call the chain phone call effect. There’s an interesting game you can play with a group of people where you whisper a story in one person’s ear, and then that person whispers the story to another person, and so on. After this process is done, say 10 times, the last person that heard the story repeats it for the group. Then the original story is read. I was seen this done a number of times and it has never failed to bring a lot of laughs as people are amazed at how far the story changes in that short line of transmission.

Of course the above process is one where things are orally transmitted and so because of it being oral it dramatically increases the amount of error from person-to-person. But the same effect is seen to a small degree when things are copied many times over a long period of time.

There are a number of very innocent errors that can happen in the process:

  • These are hand written documents, sometimes the reader mistakes one letter for another
  • Homoeoarcton and homoeoteleution are errors caused when two lines begin or end with the same group of letters and the person skips from one line to the next thus omitting some letters.
  • Dittography is when some letters are copied twice
  • Itacism is when some letters are written for others that sound just like them.[ii]

Still innocent, but more problematic, are errors caused when the scribe deliberately re-words some text to improve its grammar, meaning, or style.  An error that borders on forgery if it isn’t downright fraud is when the scribe rewords a passage to conform to a parallel passage from another book of the bible, or reasons that he can provide a better wording for a verse.  In my opinion, it is forgery when a scribe inserts words or changes words that were not in the original text either to add some material that he thought was missing or to promote a theological viewpoint.  In the words of Jerome:

Odd though it may seem, scribes who thought were more dangerous than those who wished merely to be faithful in copying what lay before them.[iii]

If copying caused some problems, then translating caused even more variations, especially when there became multiple translations from different translators translating from different manuscripts.

Names of Manuscripts

Some manuscripts are named after places or person associated with them.  For example,  Codex Sinaiticus was named after the monastery of St. Catherine on Mount Sinai and Codex Bezae was named after Theodore Beza, who gave it to the University of Cambridge in 1581.

Manuscripts all have a letter designation and/or number based on different numbering systems.  Siglum, Wettstein, Von Soden, and Gregory-Aland are all cataloging systems giving different designations to manuscripts.  The Codex Bezae is designated by siglum Dea or 05 (in the Gregory-Aland numbering).[iv]

Families of Texts

As manuscripts began being studied in greater detail it was discovered that manuscripts from different areas displayed different tendencies according to the area they came from.  These groups of texts are called families.  Especially interesting are the texts that are a mix of family styles when a scribe in one area gets a text from another area and combines variants from another region into the text from his area.  Following are major families of texts.

The Alexandrian texts (texts originating around Alexandria, Egypt) are considered the most faithful in preserving the original. They are briefer and more to the point with less polishing of style and grammar than other families of texts. Codex Vaticanus,  Codex Sinaiticus, and the Bodmer Papyri are examples of this family.

The Western text (texts originating around Italy, Gaul, and north Africa) are known for their paraphrasing.

“Words, clauses, and even whole senses are freely change, omitted, or inserted. Sometimes the motive appears to have been harmonization, while at other times it was the enrichment of the narrative by the inclusion of traditional or apocryphal material.”[v]

Some parts of the Western text are longer than other texts while other parts are shorter. For example the Western text of the book of Acts is nearly 10% longer than text from other families.   Codex Bezae, Codex Claromantanus, Codex Washingtonianus are examples

The Caesarean Text (originating in Caesarea and migrating to Jerusalem) is an Eastern text that is a mix of Alexandrian and Western wordings.  Elegance of expression is one of its features, something shared with the Byzantine family.

The Byzantine Text (originating in Antioch, Syria, and migrating to Constantinople) family is characterized by its smooth style.  Variant readings are rendered into expanded readings.  There are obvious attempts to harmonize parallel passages, making it less accurate.  It is represented in a large number of manuscripts, especially the later miniscules.  It is the basis to a large degree of the Greek Text (Textus Receptus) that is the Greek behind the KJV and most other translations before the twentieth century because at that time it was considered the authoritative form of the Greek texts.   Codex Alexandrinus is an example.

Editions of the Greek Text

The original Greek text for the first English translations came from the work of Desiderius Erasmus. Erasmus was a Catholic priest, humanist, and a follower of Augustine’s tradition that saw a need to make an attempt to use critical methods to resolve variants in the text to get back to the original texts of the books of the bible as the word of God.  He had begun working with the Latin Vulgate texts and realized that they contained inadequate translations of the original Greek and so turned his attention to creating a more accurate Greek version.  Additionally he wanted to be part of the process that would result in a more readable version of the bible.  He was a proponent of reading Greek philosophers and poets to strengthen the mind, avoiding what he called the obscene passages.  He challenged believers to read the “Holy Writ” to be “prepared for any attack of the enemy.”[vi]

Erasmus’ first edition was really a hodge-podge where Erasmus compared several texts he borrowed and reconstructed what he thought was the original text.  Also Erasmus had to translate some verses from the Latin Vulgate because he didn’t have any text for the last six verses of Revelation. While in the end Erasmus’ product was unique because it contained influences from his Latin work, the Greek texts upon which it was based were primarily of the Byzantine family.  Erasmus continued to create new editions that correctly typos and refined the text.  Tyndale, Martin Luther and others based their translations on Erasmus’ work.

Robert Etienne (aka Stephanus, which is the Latin form of his name) was signicant in being the first to do a couple of things.  In 1550 he was the first to have a critical apparatus that itemized significant variants in the texts for verses.  In 1551 he was the first to print an edition with numbered verses in the New Testament.[vii]

Theodore Beza published 10 editions between 1565 and 1611.  His editions were so well received they started the concept of Textus Receptus, or received text, the idea being that this was the best Greek edition received by all.[viii]

Bonaventura and Abraham Elzevir were the printers who actually introduced the term “Textus Receptus” when they printed it in their 1633 second edition of the Greek New Testament.  Unfortunately, their assessment was misleading as it elevated the accuracy of the Byzantine family of texts over all the others while in reality this family and the resultant Greek editions had perhaps the most scribal insertions, some of which were significant.[ix]

Textus Receptus formed the basis of Greek Editions and biblical translation until Karl Lachmann applied textual criticism to the variants from all available manuscripts to produce a more accurate Greek New Testament in 1831.  This was refined by Constantin von Tischendorf “whose eighth edition (1869-1872) remains a monumental thesaurus of variant readings.”[x] This work was further refined by Westcott and Hort in 1881.

Westcott and Hort’s work became the basis for United Bible Society editions up until the present time. The latest UBS Greek New Testament edition is called UBS4 (for the 4th edition) published in 1994.

The United Bible Society states their mission to be a non denomination association of bible societies dedicated to the translation, publication, and distribution of bibles worldwide.  Besides Bibles they produce new editions of the Greek New Testament, as well as aids such as textual commentaries, atlases, and lexicons.

Using a Textual Commentary

Most people are familiar with the concept of a biblical commentary where you can read elements in a passage of scripture and how they relate other parts of the Bible.  A textual commentary is a book where you can find a discussion of how the variant manuscript renderings of a verse were considered.


The above example shows variant information about Matthew 1:16[xi].

and Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.  (Matthew 1:16 ASV)

In looking at the example, we find the following information:

Item Description
1.16 Refers to the verse
Greek Shows the text in the Greek New Testament about which we have the commentary.  In this case we are looking at the United Bible Society’s Greek New Testament, 1975 edition.  If you don’t read Greek you can still use a Greek Lexicon and find the meaning of the words.  You can also find a translation of the verse at biblos.com.[xii]
{B} Indicates the degree of certainty about the reading selected.  A – certain, B – some doubt, C – considerable doubt, D – very high doubt, no satisfactory readings, the reading selected represents the least unsatisfactory reading
Comments The text underneath the Greek discusses the variant readings, which manuscript (families) have the reading, and why the selected reading was chosen.  In the example above, as it says. there were three principal variant readings.  The discussion of this verse takes over four pages in the commentary.

The issue about this verse is whether the verse says that Jesus is the progeny of Mary or Joseph.  In the case of this verse, the Sinaitic Syriac manuscript, which the commentary lists as variant (3) translates as “Joseph, to whom was betrothed Mary the virgin, begot Jesus who is called Christ.”   As this makes it appear that Joseph was the natural father, this is problematic.  However, the selected reading of the Greek New Testament for this verse does not indicate that Joseph is the father of Jesus, and the comments for this verse in the commentary explains why this reading is preferable, with some doubt.

[i] A TEXTUAL COMMENTARY ON THE GREEK NEW TESTAMENT, Bruce M Metzger, United Bible Societies, London New York, 1975
[ii] ibid., p. xv-xvi
[iii] THE MAKING OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, Origin, Collection, Text & Canon, Arthur G. Patzia, InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, Illinois, 1995. p. 141
[iv] Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codex_Bezae
[v] A TEXTUAL COMMENTARY.,  p. xviii
[vi] A SHORT INTRODUCTION TO HERMENEUTICS, David Jasper, Westminster John Knox Press, Louisville, 2004, p. 52-56
[vii] A SHORT INTRODUCTION, p. xxii
[viii] ibid.
[ix] ibid. p. 23
[x] ibid., p. xxiii
[xi] A TEXTUAL COMMENTARY, p. 2
[xii] The translation for this verse is at http://biblos.com/matthew/1-16.htm A interlinear translation is at http://interlinearbible.org/matthew/1.htm

© copyright 2011 Mark W Smith, All rights reserved.

March 29th, 2011 Posted by | Biblical Translation And Interpretation | no comments