[b-hebrew] Septuagint vs Hebrew, effect on Christianity
hholmyard at ont.com
Sat Oct 14 17:57:20 EDT 2006
>> K Randolph wrote:
>>> LXX was irrelevant to the founding of Christianity and the writing of the New Testament.
> Harold Holmyard,
>> HH: What do you mean when you say this? It is obvious that the NT quotation of many OT verses
>> follows the LXX wording exactly or almost exactly.
> Not so obviously - let's play carts and horses.
> a) The extant manuscripts of the Greek OT are 4th century and later.
> b) These have a wild and wooly textual history, involving the Hexapla,
> competing Jewish and Christian provenance, and the realm of
> alexandrian copyists, known for their lack of precision and ability
> to come up with doozies (a lot scribal level).
> c) There are cases that are essentially indisputable where the Greek OT was
> 'smoothed' to match the NT (by scribes who did not understand the NT text
> fully). One is Cainan in late Greek OT genealogy to match Luke 3:36.
> Another is the rather amazing case of rigging Psalms to match a Romans section.
> d) There are very few cases where the Greek OT reading in question (that
> is 'closer' to a NT reading) is supported by any other early texts, be
> they Targumim, Peshitta, Vulgate or the DSS.
> An easier general explanation for the verses in question -
> The Greek OT was 'smoothed' by low-quality scribes between 100 AD to 500 AD
> to be closer to the NT - by scribes who simply could not leave midrash alone :-)
HH: Where did you get this information? You don't
include other sources of LXX quotations such as
Philo and Josephus. There is a huge debt that he
NT writers have to the LXX, one that makes your
claim look like it must have been a conspiracy
rather than a number of mistakes. Here is one
comment from the Wikipedia article on the Septuagint:
Of the fuller quotations in the New Testament of
the Old, nearly one hundred agree with the modern
form of the Septuagint and six agree with the
Masoretic Text. The principle differences
concern presumed Bibilical prophecies relative to
HH: Copies of the Septuagint must have been fairly
common at the time of the church's foundation,
used in Jewish synagogues in the Greek-speaking
part of the world. So these errors would be
noticed, it seems to me.
HH: And very soon the Septuagint was translated
into other languages, such as the Old Latin, which
can be used to provide textual criticism on the
text of the LXX.
HH: Furthermore, the Dead Sea Scrolls show that
some peculiarities of the LXX were based on an
alternate Hebrew text. If the NT quotes the LXX as
God's word to make a point, and the LXX had to
be changed to make the point, the point itself
would lose the validity that God's word could provide.
HH: I recently read a fairly long text on studying
the Septuagint, by Karen Jobes and Moises Silva,
called Invitation to the Septuagint. I don't
remember that this claim even came up.
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