traditions regarding tetragrammaton?

Daniel Wagner dan.wagner at
Thu Aug 23 13:58:31 EDT 2001

----- Original Message ----- 
From: David Stabnow <dstabno at>
To: Biblical Hebrew <b-hebrew at>
Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2001 8:51 AM
Subject: Re: traditions regarding tetragrammaton?

> If the one LXX MS reflects the original (which would make sense in
> context), the others are attempts to mitigate the language regarding the
> Name.

Interesting point, since i think the LXX itself may be evidence of translator with "traditions" to protect the name YHWH since it usually kurios rather than a transliteration. It seems like i recall someone posting here within the past few months and saying that originally LXX (and NT!) MSS had a transliteration of Yahweh but that later scribes replaced it with kurios. Does anyone know of evidence for this? It would not seem likely to me, since we have some pretty early LXX MSS evidence (some pre-Christian), which i don't think have a transliterated name.

The fact that both LXX and scribal evidence in MT and DSS all seem to point to influence from these "traditions" would seem to indicate that they were late and not original at the time of composition of the HB.

Regarding "kingdom of heaven" (mostly Matthew) vs. "kingdom of God" (common elsewhere in NT), do we really have any evidence that this was intended to avoid the word _theos_ with Jews, or was it simply diversity of authors' preferences? Why would Matthew not want to say "kingdom of God" when he used _theos_ in plenty of other contexts? And why avoid "kingdom of God" which is not the same as "kingdom of Yahweh" anyway? I don't see that this NT evidence (mostly just in Matthew) is very strong. Am i missing something?

Dan Wagner

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