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bkovacs
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« on: March 01, 2010, 11:50:06 PM »

Anyone ever used this translation just for reading.

http://bible.org/netbible/index.htm
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« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2010, 02:18:46 AM »

I find the differences in Gen 1:27, Gen 2:24, and James 5:19-20 questionable.

I find 1 Cor 11:24 to be disturbing where it should say "Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you" it just says "This is my body, which is for you".

I also find myself in disagreement with some of the footnotes, not to mention the fact that they reinterpret the text so often they have a large amount of footnotes explaining why they changed what the text actually says.

This footnote found in John 2 seems to assert the idea that Christ used the word "woman" when referring to Mary because He wanted to distance His relationship to her. It makes no reference to the traditional implied understanding of Mary as being "the woman" found in the OT like in Gen 3 when God will put enmity between the serpent and "the woman" and his seed and "her seed".
Quote
The term Woman is Jesus’ normal, polite way of addressing women (Matt 15:28, Luke 13:12; John 4:21; 8:10; 19:26; 20:15). But it is unusual for a son to address his mother with this term. The custom in both Hebrew (or Aramaic) and Greek would be for a son to use a qualifying adjective or title. Is there significance in Jesus’ use here? It probably indicates that a new relationship existed between Jesus and his mother once he had embarked on his public ministry. He was no longer or primarily only her son, but the “Son of Man.” This is also suggested by the use of the same term in 19:26 in the scene at the cross, where the beloved disciple is “given” to Mary as her “new” son.

Just a few things I noticed about it.
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And FWIW, these are our Fathers too, you know.

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« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2010, 02:34:59 AM »

When I was young and when so many new English translations started popping up in bookshops we applied a very simple rule of thumb.  We would flick through to Isaiah 7:14.  If the translation said, "Behold, a young woman shall conceive..." we would not bother with it.  But if Isaiah 7:14 said, "Behold, a virgin shall conceive..." then we would look at the new translation with more interest.

This simple rule of thumb was quite sensible since it indicated the mindset of those who had put the new translation together.

The NET Bible fails the test... give it a miss.
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« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2010, 02:49:08 AM »

When I was young and when so many new English translations started popping up in bookshops we applied a very simple rule of thumb.  We would flick through to Isaiah 7:14.  If the translation said, "Behold, a young woman shall conceive..." we would not bother with it.  But if Isaiah 7:14 said, "Behold, a virgin shall conceive..." then we would look at the new translation with more interest.

This simple rule of thumb was quite sensible since it indicated the mindset of those who had put the new translation together.

The NET Bible fails the test... give it a miss.

I like that test!


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« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2010, 07:33:57 AM »

Anyone ever used this translation just for reading.

http://bible.org/netbible/index.htm

No, I don't like Alexandrian text based translations and only use them for comparative reasons.
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« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2010, 07:44:18 AM »

I don't like Alexandrian text based translations and only use them for comparative reasons.

The Septuagint (the Alexandrian text) is the first
"Jewish Authorised Version" of the Old Testament.

I find that I often have to disabuse young biblical enthusiasts in the
parish of the notion that the Septuagint is "our Greek Orthodox version of
the Old Testament" and the even more odd idea that Christians composed it in
some sort of scriptural war with the Jews.

Nothing could be further from the trurh.

The Septuagint is NOT a Christian translation. It is a Jewish translation.

It became the gift of the Jewish Temple to the Christian Church. The
Christians of the apostolic era received it from the Jews and thereafter
knew no other. It remains the one canonical Old Testament for the Orthodox
Church.

The Septuagint was a translation project approved by the Temple authorities
in the centuries before Christ. Israel provided the best and most learned of
its scholars (said to be 70 in all, hence its name of Septuagint) to
undertake the translation from Hebrew into Greek. Every line was checked
upon translation. Every Jewish scholar working on the translation critically
reviewed everything which some other scholar had translated into Greek.

The Septuagint is the first authoritative and canonical Hebrew Scripture. Up
until then the Scritures had fluctuated as regards the books to be included.
The Septuagint represents the Jerualem Temple's choice of canonical books.
It "fixed" the canonical books for centuries to come.

It also represents the Temple's deliberate choice of correct verses wherever
there were conflicting variants. As a specific example, the choice of
"virgin-parthenos" in Isaiah was the choice of the Jewish translators.

When you hold the Septuagint in your hands, you are holding a 100% Jewish
Old Testament. One could see it as the Authorised Version of the OT for the
Jews, authorised and sealed with the authority of the Temple and the
Sanhedrin.

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« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2010, 09:44:39 AM »

First off the NT the Orthodox Church uses is the Byzantine text not the Alexandrian text and the Septuagint mss are not classified into text types as far as I'm aware. Here's a good article which explains why the Alexandrian text is inferior to the Byzantine text: http://www.esgm.org/ingles/appendh.h.htm, and I've come across many Orthodox writers who themselves do not endorse this text and discourage it's use.

I don't like Alexandrian text based translations and only use them for comparative reasons.

If I remember correctly, I've rebutted this following post before, and I'll rebut it again now because it's not 100% factual:

The Septuagint (the Alexandrian text) is the first
"Jewish Authorised Version" of the Old Testament.

No it's not, the first and only "Jewish Authorized Version" is the Masoretic text.

I find that I often have to disabuse young biblical enthusiasts in the
parish of the notion that the Septuagint is "our Greek Orthodox version of
the Old Testament" and the even more odd idea that Christians composed it in
some sort of scriptural war with the Jews.

Nothing could be further from the trurh.

The Septuagint is NOT a Christian translation. It is a Jewish translation.

Regarding this you are correct. The LXX is the earlist known Jewish translation which was completed way before the Rabbis and Church Fathers had any axes to grind.

It became the gift of the Jewish Temple to the Christian Church.

Let's rephrase this a bit more accurately:

It became a gift from the Greek speaking Jews to the Greek speaking Christian Church. East of the Euphrates the LXX was not used by anyone.

The
Christians of the apostolic era received it from the Jews and thereafter
knew no other. It remains the one canonical Old Testament for the Orthodox
Church.

In the Aramaic churches the Peshitta Tanakh (which was also translated from Hebrew) and earlier the Targums were used, not the LXX.

The Septuagint was a translation project approved by the Temple authorities
in the centuries before Christ. Israel provided the best and most learned of
its scholars (said to be 70 in all, hence its name of Septuagint) to
undertake the translation from Hebrew into Greek. Every line was checked
upon translation. Every Jewish scholar working on the translation critically
reviewed everything which some other scholar had translated into Greek.

Yes but only for the Torah.

The Septuagint is the first authoritative and canonical Hebrew Scripture. Up
until then the Scritures had fluctuated as regards the books to be included.
The Septuagint represents the Jerualem Temple's choice of canonical books.
It "fixed" the canonical books for centuries to come.

Unless you're referring only to the Torah this is not true. It was Ptolemy who asked for a Greek translation of the Torah so that he could add it to the Library of Alexandria, not the Alexandrian Jewish community so that they could read it in the synagogues. Both the Letter of Aristeas and the Talmud explicitly state that the 72 Jerusalem scholars translated the Torah only:

Further books were translated over the next two centuries. It is not altogether clear which was translated when, or where; some may even have been translated twice, into different versions, and then revised.[9] The quality and style of the different translators also varied considerably from book to book, from the literal to paraphrasing to interpretative. According to one assessment "the Pentateuch is reasonably well translated, but the rest of the books, especially the poetical books, are often very poorly done and even contain sheer absurdities".[10]

It also represents the Temple's deliberate choice of correct verses wherever
there were conflicting variants. As a specific example, the choice of
"virgin-parthenos" in Isaiah was the choice of the Jewish translators.

This issue of almah vs. parthenos has been argued to death quite pointlessly as it has been demonstrated over and over that parthenos is indeed the direct cognate of almah. There is no evidence that the Hebrew Isaiah had any other word but almah, the Great Isaiah Scroll proves it.

When you hold the Septuagint in your hands, you are holding a 100% Jewish
Old Testament.

Of course but the same goes for most other OT texts.

One could see it as the Authorised Version of the OT for the
Jews, authorised and sealed with the authority of the Temple and the
Sanhedrin.

No we cannot because among other things it's not in the original language.

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« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2010, 10:45:47 AM »

It's a very readable Bible and it's good for light reading, but it contains a lot of bad theology. In addition to what has been said, the footnotes in John 6 explain away our literal understanding of the Eucharist. That said, the extensive footnotes are interesting. Unfortunately it cannot be trusted for in-depth study.

I definitely wish I hadn't blown $50 on a copy when I was Protestant...it's just collecting dust since I converted.

I do give them credit for translating the Deuterocanon (though it's only online, not in the print version). And the online version has a nice verse-by-verse "interliner" with both LXX and Hebrew and a full Strong's dictionary and comparisons with other translations. That is useful, I think. http://net.bible.org/verse.php?book=Gen&chapter=1&verse=1
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« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2010, 11:03:24 AM »

Despite the Protestant origins, I find that the NKJV (Textus Receptus) and the NASB (Alexandrian) both stand as fairly modern but literal translations. The NKJV has the advantage (with footnotes) of also listing Majority Text (MT) variations away from the Textus Receptus (TR). The text used by the church of Greece - most of the time - stands somewhere between TR and MT. Consider this a cautious endorsement of the translation used in the Orthodox Study Bible NT.

Take a gander at this site, which lists "translatable" variances between the various textual traditions including the version of the Majority Text used by the NKJV:
http://bible-researcher.com/guide.html


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« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2010, 07:06:47 PM »


No it's not, the first and only "Jewish Authorized Version" is the Masoretic text.

Was not the Septuagint authorised by the High Priest of the Temple in Jerusalem Eleasar in the third century before the birth of Christ and did he not send translators from the tribes of Israel to undertake the translation?

By whom was the Masoretic authorised?

In AD 70, the Jewish Temple is destroyed.  The Rabbinical schools that had previously fought with each other in Jerusalem temporarily united at a new Rabbinical school on the coast at Jamnia.  Around AD 90, they held a Rabbinical Council, specifically to deal with the "problem" of Jewish converts to Christianity.  As part of that Council, the Old Testament canon was finally "decided" upon, and is today called the Masoretic Text (except for Esther, whose status remained in controversy after the close of the Council).  The Council also specifically forbade the use of the Septuagint - specifically because it was being used so successfully by the Christian sect in converting Jews.

The same Council added the Benediction-Cursing of Christians to the Sabbath prayers, "May the Christians (followers of the Nazarite) have no place in the Book of Life...etc." .  This formal incorporation of a curse against us in the synagogues was the final factor of separation between the synagogue and Christian Jews.


However, this is taking place circa 90 AD, when the Church was already using the Septuagint as their Old Testament, the Apostles had already written their Gospels and Epistles and used the Septuagint for virtually all their OT quotes, and the Fathers continued to use it, quote it, and incorporate its words into the Liturgy (in fact, Sirach is called Eccelesiasticus, or "Church Book," because it is used so extensively in the liturgy). St. Irenaeus (177), St. Jutsin Martyr (c.150), and yes, even Jerome - who is often dishonestly misrepresented in the matter - supported the use of the Deuterocanonicals of the Septuagint and quoted from them in apologetic arguments.


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« Reply #10 on: March 02, 2010, 08:47:54 PM »


No it's not, the first and only "Jewish Authorized Version" is the Masoretic text.

Was not the Septuagint authorised by the High Priest of the Temple in Jerusalem Eleasar in the third century before the birth of Christ and did he not send translators from the tribes of Israel to undertake the translation?

Jewish Authorized Version = an agreed upon standard text in the original language (i.e. Hebrew) which is to be read in every Jewish synagogue all over the world, that is what the Masoretic text is and what the LXX is not. The synagogues around the world are free to use translations of the Hebrew text (eg: the Yemenites use the Targums and Sa'adia Gaon's Arabic translation) or to verbally interpret the Hebrew in addition to NOT instead of the Hebrew text. Before the compilation of the Masoretic text, there were various Hebrew mss with variants. This is no different from the committee at Mount Athos who compiled the 1904 authorized Orthodox NT from 20 Byzantine mss.

By whom was the Masoretic authorised?

Rambam, as well as other highly respected Rabbis of the day, that's apparently good enough for Jews today.

In AD 70, the Jewish Temple is destroyed.  The Rabbinical schools that had previously fought with each other in Jerusalem temporarily united at a new Rabbinical school on the coast at Jamnia.  Around AD 90, they held a Rabbinical Council, specifically to deal with the "problem" of Jewish converts to Christianity.

It's worth mentioning that this Council of Jamnia is actually a theory, a plausible theory but there's actually no concrete proof that it ever occured. As for the Rabbinical schools uniting after the Temple's destruction this is impossible because of the 2 Rabbinical schools that were around in Yeshua's day, only the school of Hillel survived the Roman seige of Jerusalem. The other school, the school of Shamai, which was responsible (in part) for Yeshua's crucifixion completely perished when the temple was destroyed, so did the sect of the Sadducees - the other Jewish group responsible for the crucifixion of Messiah. When God passes judgement He never does a half job, except for a few repentant souls He leaves no survivers, the stories of the Flood and Sodom and Gomorrah make this very clear.

Assuming that this Council did take place the only Jewish presence was the Palestinian Hillel Pharisees without representation from the other Jewish sects such as the Samaritans or Essenes and other Jewish communities such as those from Alexandria or Babylon. In short nothing comparable to say the Council of Nicaea which is why Jewish scholars don't take it too seriously.

As part of that Council, the Old Testament canon was finally "decided" upon, and is today called the Masoretic Text (except for Esther, whose status remained in controversy after the close of the Council).

The Masoretic text was only compiled in 10th century, "text" and "canon" are not the same thing.

The Council also specifically forbade the use of the Septuagint - specifically because it was being used so successfully by the Christian sect in converting Jews. The same Council added the Benediction-Cursing of Christians to the Sabbath prayers, "May the Christians (followers of the Nazarite) have no place in the Book of Life...etc." .  This formal incorporation of a curse against us in the synagogues was the final factor of separation between the synagogue and Christian Jews.

And your point is? BTW historically the Babylonian and Ethiopian Jews have had longer canons, even after the supposed Council.

However, this is taking place circa 90 AD, when the Church was already using the Septuagint as their Old Testament,

The Church west of the Euphrates that is.

the Apostles had already written their Gospels and Epistles and used the Septuagint for virtually all their OT quotes,

The Apostles didn't quote any text: see this, this and this. A quote is copying the words verbatim, there are very few of these in the NT writings. Back then unless you were a Rabbi (like Paul) you likely never had a chance to read a Torah scroll, you would learn the Torah and Prophets by hearing them chanted in Hebrew and then intrepreted orally in your native tongue - that's where most of the OT quotes came from - the author's memory. No one except maybe Paul sat with an OT scroll in front of them to write their Gosple/Epistle and even Paul would not have had the luxury of referencing the OT in writing all the time.

and the Fathers continued to use it, quote it, and incorporate its words into the Liturgy

The Fathers west of the Euphrates that is.

(in fact, Sirach is called Eccelesiasticus, or "Church Book," because it is used so extensively in the liturgy). St. Irenaeus (177), St. Jutsin Martyr (c.150), and yes, even Jerome - who is often dishonestly misrepresented in the matter - supported the use of the Deuterocanonicals of the Septuagint and quoted from them in apologetic arguments.

So what?
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« Reply #11 on: March 03, 2010, 12:05:56 AM »


The Apostles didn't quote any text:


The early Church Fathers, and the apostles themselves during the New Testement era, when quoting the Old Testament Scriptures, exclusively quote the Septuagint version of the text.  The most astounding example is in Acts 15, the Council of Jerusalem, where the apostles must decide whether gentiles must conform to Jewish ritual to become Christians.


In rendering the Councils's decision, James quotes Amos 9:11-12, and in our New Testament (NIV), it is quoted thus:


"After this I will return and rebuild David's fallen tent.  It's ruins I will rebuild, and I will restore it, that the remnant of men may seek the Lord, and all the Gentiles who bear my name....

However, if you turn to your typical Protestant Old Testament, Amos 9:11-12 reads as follows:


"In that day I will restore David's fallen tent. I will repair its broken places, restore its ruins, and build it as it used to be, so that they may possess the remnant of Edom and all nations that bear my name..."
 

Both of these are possible renditions from the transcripts that we have.  But the difference is huge:  the Septuagint says that the gentiles will seek the Lord; the Hebrew version says that "they" [the Jews] will possess the gentiles!  It would humorous (if it wasn't so tragic) that most Bibles use the Septuagint quote in the New Testament, but if you cross-reference back to the Old Testament, they use the Hebrew rendering.


Not only does James quote the Septuagint - but in every case where the Hebrew and Greek texts differ (85% of the time!), the New Testament writers quote the Septuagint.


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« Reply #12 on: March 03, 2010, 12:22:03 AM »


No it's not, the first and only "Jewish Authorized Version" is the Masoretic text.


Dear Nazarene,

Are you really not aware that you carry the curse of the rabbis
after the destruction of the temple, the very same rabbis who
approved what became the Masoretic text, the text which you
strive so hard to defend?

Here is the curse they lay upon you as a Nazarene:

"May the Nozrim and Minim disappear in the twinkling of an eye.
May they be removed from the book of the living and not be
inscribed among the just."



Jewish Christians went on worshipping in the synagogues until
the Jewish Council of Jamnia in the year 90. The Council of Jamnia,
the Council which approved the Masoretic text, added a
prayer cursing Christians to the Friday evening prayers and this made it
impossible for Christians to continue praying in the synagogues. It brought
about the final separation of the Jewish Christian community and the
synagogue.

Here is something I wrote elsewhere...


The Jewish anti-Christian attitude started to come to the fore very early
after the death of Christ.

The separation of Jews and Christians took place in stages. Jewish
Christians throughout the Empire stopped attending synagogues as Jews began
to denounce them to the Roman authorities for belonging to a forbidden sect.

The separation was fully complete in 90 AD, by the choice of the Jews.

The Jewish Council of Jamnia held in 90 AD was an explicitly anti-Christian
council which (among other things) added a benediction-cursing prayer to the
worship service for the express purpose of excluding Christians from
participating in Jewish Sabbath worship.

Here is a quote from the book "John and Jamnia: How the Break Occurred
between Jews and Christians", by Fredric Manns (1988), pages 25-26.:

"Jews who believed Jesus was the Messiah continued to frequent the
synagogue. By doing this, they followed the example of the Apostles who went
to the temple every day for prayer. James [for example] ... spent all day
praying on his knees in the temple, according to Eusebius of Caesarea. After
the destruction of the Temple, the Jews decided to break with those who
recognized Jesus as the Messiah.

Under Rabbi Gamaliel they inserted the 'benediction-curse of the Minim' into
the prayer called Shemone Esre.

The text of this benediction, as it appears in the Geniza of Cairo is as
follows:

'May apostates have no hope and the kingdom of
impertinence be uprooted in our day. May the Nozrim
and Minim disappear in the twinkling of an eye. May
they be removed from the book of the living and not
be inscribed among the just. Blessed art thou, O Lord,
who cast down the proud.'

Three categories of people are affected by this 'benediction-curse'.

1. First of all, Jews who collaborate with the Romans,

2. the Roman empire itself, and finally,

3. Jews who follow Jesus.

The latter are designated under the titles of Nozrim and Minim ... (Nozrim
means "followers of the Nazarene and is still used for Christians in Israel,
for example, modern Israeli legislation dealing with Christians terms us as
Nozrim.)

The establishment of this 'benediction' was therefore the equivalent of
driving the Minim and Nozrim [Christians] from the synagogue."

When the Jews changed their liturgy so that Christians would be calling down
curses upon themselves if they participated in it, the Jews who believed in
Jesus found themselves completely excluded from temple worship.

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« Reply #13 on: March 03, 2010, 12:49:09 AM »

The Apostles did not quote the MT Nazarene. Whoever told that to you lies because they quoted Peshitta Tanakh and a version of the Tanakh which resembles more the targums and LXX (the Hebrew "contained" in the LXX is by the way more ancient). The MT is a rabbinic "standardized" version which does not make use of the original Hebrew. Don't be fooled by the rabbis.
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« Reply #14 on: March 03, 2010, 12:49:09 AM »

The "great" Ramban (Maimonides) called the True Messiah a false prophet. Listen not to what the rabbis say on this. They have a veil on them.
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« Reply #15 on: March 03, 2010, 12:49:09 AM »

Anybody who rejects Nicea is outside the True Apostolic Church founded by the Apostles and has in effect created their own schismatic group. Nicea was accepted by all Bishops appointed by all Apostles, including the COE in 410 A.D.- this makes it the one and only true Ecumenical council and whoever goes against it should be cutoff from the Church. Again who cares for what the Rabbis say about Nicea...
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« Reply #16 on: March 03, 2010, 12:49:09 AM »

The Apostle Jude makes use of the Deuterocanonicals in his letter, the COE has never declared a canon either, though it holds those books in less regard to the ones canonized in Jamnia. The Rabbis have an axe to grind with the LXX because it was completed before Christianity and bears witness to the Messiah and the lying pen of the scribes who changed scripture in the Tiberian Yeshivas.
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« Reply #17 on: March 03, 2010, 12:59:00 AM »

The Septuagint (the Alexandrian text) is the first
"Jewish Authorised Version" of the Old Testament.

No it's not, the first and only "Jewish Authorized Version" is the Masoretic text.
Yes, that is true.  But that's not to say the first text authorized by Israel and received by the Hebrews, which would be the LXX.

It became the gift of the Jewish Temple to the Christian Church.

Let's rephrase this a bit more accurately:

It became a gift from the Greek speaking Jews to the Greek speaking Christian Church. East of the Euphrates the LXX was not used by anyone.
Wrong: in the 6th cent. the Peshitta was recast to bring it in line with the Greek Text, and the Syro-Hexaplar was a direct translation of the LXX into Syraic.  Besides that, the Anagignoskomena survive in their Syriac Versions.

Btw, as I've shown elsewhere here, the majority of Hebrews at this time were Greek speaking, including a sizeable number in Palestine itself.

The
Christians of the apostolic era received it from the Jews and thereafter
knew no other. It remains the one canonical Old Testament for the Orthodox
Church.

In the Aramaic churches the Peshitta Tanakh (which was also translated from Hebrew) and earlier the Targums were used, not the LXX.

See above.  Also, Justinian had a new translation into Palestinian Aramaic.


One could see it as the Authorised Version of the OT for the
Jews, authorised and sealed with the authority of the Temple and the
Sanhedrin.

No we cannot because among other things it's not in the original language.
Neither is, for the vast majority, the Gospels (Christ didn't speak Greek).  Your point?
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« Reply #18 on: March 03, 2010, 01:16:48 AM »

Nazarene, the idea that the Masoretic text is a faithful agenda free translation of the original Hebrew is laughable. If you think I exaggerate, I can get the blessed Deacon of Peshitta.org Paul Younan to say and show you that the LXX and Peshitta Tanakh contains the original teachings in a very literal translation, that the LXX contains the original Hebrew. Isa, you won't convince her with Greek primacy. It is sufficient to say that the Old Testament used by the oldest continuing Judaism (that of Iraq) is the Peshitta Tanakh, and that this text does not have its origin after Christianity or in the LXX (or the targums like that of Onkelos/Aquila).
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« Reply #19 on: March 03, 2010, 01:20:35 AM »

Also Nazarene will still have to account for why Middle East Yemenite Jews use the Aleppo codex instead of the MT if the MT is so faithful as claimed.
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« Reply #20 on: March 03, 2010, 01:21:15 AM »


No it's not, the first and only "Jewish Authorized Version" is the Masoretic text.

Was not the Septuagint authorised by the High Priest of the Temple in Jerusalem Eleasar in the third century before the birth of Christ and did he not send translators from the tribes of Israel to undertake the translation?

Jewish Authorized Version = an agreed upon standard text in the original language (i.e. Hebrew) which is to be read in every Jewish synagogue all over the world, that is what the Masoretic text is and what the LXX is not. The synagogues around the world are free to use translations of the Hebrew text (eg: the Yemenites use the Targums and Sa'adia Gaon's Arabic translation) or to verbally interpret the Hebrew in addition to NOT instead of the Hebrew text. Before the compilation of the Masoretic text, there were various Hebrew mss with variants. This is no different from the committee at Mount Athos who compiled the 1904 authorized Orthodox NT from 20 Byzantine mss.

Since the Old Testament can only be understood in the light of the New Testament, and the rabbis still read with a veil covering their eyes, I'm not clear why what they authorize is of any importance.

By whom was the Masoretic authorised?

Rambam, as well as other highly respected Rabbis of the day, that's apparently good enough for Jews today.
But not good enough for Christians.

As part of that Council, the Old Testament canon was finally "decided" upon, and is today called the Masoretic Text (except for Esther, whose status remained in controversy after the close of the Council).

The Masoretic text was only compiled in 10th century, "text" and "canon" are not the same thing.

True, but since the Jews removed Maccabbees, Sirach,etc. edited Daniel etc. from the Hebrew canon, which the LXX (and the Church) preserve, what's the relevance.


However, this is taking place circa 90 AD, when the Church was already using the Septuagint as their Old Testament,

The Church west of the Euphrates that is.

The vast majority of the Church (>90%) that is.

Armenia and Georgia are East of the Euphrates, and both used the LXX.  And see above for the Syraic use of the LXX. And then there are those Greeks East of the Euphrates (they were as far as India).

the Apostles had already written their Gospels and Epistles and used the Septuagint for virtually all their OT quotes,

The Apostles didn't quote any text: see this, this and this. A quote is copying the words verbatim, there are very few of these in the NT writings. Back then unless you were a Rabbi (like Paul) you likely never had a chance to read a Torah scroll, you would learn the Torah and Prophets by hearing them chanted in Hebrew and then intrepreted orally in your native tongue - that's where most of the OT quotes came from - the author's memory. No one except maybe Paul sat with an OT scroll in front of them to write their Gosple/Epistle and even Paul would not have had the luxury of referencing the OT in writing all the time.

The NT quoting/alluding to the Anagignoskomena disproves the seal of approval of the rabbis on the Masoretic text.

and the Fathers continued to use it, quote it, and incorporate its words into the Liturgy

The Fathers west of the Euphrates that is.

The only Liturgy that Claims to be East of the Euphrates is that of Mari and Addai, and it is claimed that it was brought from Jerusalem, which is West of the Euphrates.  The main center of Syriac Liturgy was Syria, the province of Antioch, which was West of the Euphrates.

(in fact, Sirach is called Eccelesiasticus, or "Church Book," because it is used so extensively in the liturgy). St. Irenaeus (177), St. Jutsin Martyr (c.150), and yes, even Jerome - who is often dishonestly misrepresented in the matter - supported the use of the Deuterocanonicals of the Septuagint and quoted from them in apologetic arguments.

So what?
So we shouldn't care what the Rabbis have to say about Scritpure, and walk in the way of the Apostles instead.
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« Reply #21 on: March 03, 2010, 04:42:33 AM »

Let's not forget Ramban was considered a heretic by most Jews for a long time before general acceptance of his code of law. Nazarene, I suggest reading this:

http://www.pshitta.org/english/original.php
http://www.hebrewaramaic.org/pdf/Ancient_Versions_of_the_Bible.pdf

For you to see that the Peshitta Tanakh is a better option. Akhi Yaaqub knows what he's talking about.

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« Reply #22 on: March 03, 2010, 04:42:33 AM »

Quote
The NT quoting/alluding to the Anagignoskomena disproves the seal of approval of the rabbis on the Masoretic text.

Devil's advocate arguments:

Saint Paul quotes while talking to his Greek audience Epictetus and Menander, also I think Euripedes. Should we include them in the canon too?  Wink

Also: the COE does not hold the last five books as canonical (or rather, the COE has not uttered a canon yet and holds these with considerably less regard). These quote the Anagignoskomena the most (ie: Jude with Enoch, Revelation makes use of a tradition not written in the main canon books also).

Could you post a complete list of all the Anagignoskomena quotes in the entire NT Isa? Its more important to me that whenever the NT quotes the scriptures the quotes (whether they be in the Peshitta or Greek NT) they are quoting from a text which is...NOT the MT! That's the most damning evidence that the MT was a tampered version of the scriptures due to polemics with Christianity. So this is something of singular importance to me personally, since half of Christendom is using an old testament which is unreliable. It's scary really if you think about it.
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« Reply #23 on: March 03, 2010, 04:50:51 AM »

Isa, argue from the Syriac tradition in favor of the accepted orthodoxy. Assyrian Tradition that is. I know Nazarene respects the Assyrian Church enormously. The "there were no Christians East of the Euphrates" sounds weak for anybody familiar with the COE, so argue from 100% pure COE tradition which I'm sure your familiar with. Nazarene has an enormous problem accepting the authority of the Apostles as well. She doesn't understand the concept of laying on of hands, Apostolic succession, nor the rabbinic equivalent of Semikha. At least that's the impression I get when she says "so what?" to what St. Ireneus would have to say. Nazarene is a friend of mine by the way, we know each other.
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« Reply #24 on: March 07, 2010, 05:40:28 PM »

The Apostles did not quote the MT Nazarene. Whoever told that to you lies

Care to show where exactly I supposedly claimed that they did? You're not paying attention, I specifically said this:

Quote from: Nazarene
The Apostles didn't quote any text

because they quoted Peshitta Tanakh

No as the Peshitta Tanakh was virtually unknown outside of Mesopotamia and is in fact completely unrelated to the Peshitta NT:

Quote from: Paul Younan
I would *not* expect that the Peshitta NT quotes the Peshitta OT in any manner.

Reason being, despite the fact that they share a common name, the two texts are totally unrelated. I think the common name confuses people.

If you carefully study the nuances of the Aramaic of the POT, it is a very rigid translation of the Hebrew in a very Mesopotamian-style dialect (in particular, it contains many "Chaldeanisms" in addition to its "Hebraicisms".) This is exactly what we would expect of an Aramaic translation made by Jews in Babylonian Captivity. However, this version was not used outside of Mesopotamia.

If you carefully study the nuances of the Aramaic of the PNT, it is a very natural Aramaic of Palestinian origin. The reason why I say that is, it contains many Hellenisms. This is exactly what we would expect of an Aramaic work made by Jews who lived under Graeco-Roman domination. The fact that it contains these Hellenisms is important to our Aramaic Primacy cause.....because if it didn't, then it couldn't have been written in 1st-century Palestine.

and a version of the Tanakh which resembles more the targums and LXX (the Hebrew "contained" in the LXX is by the way more ancient).

You mean versions of the Hebrew Tanakh. Sure there were different texts with variant readings, some of which agree with the MT, others with the LXX and still others with other OT texts. Also the Samaritan Khumash has a lot of agreements with the LXX Pentateuch.

The MT is a rabbinic "standardized" version which does not make use of the original Hebrew. Don't be fooled by the rabbis.

Care to show me where exactly I supposedly claimed that the MT is the original Hebrew?

The "great" Ramban (Maimonides) called the True Messiah a false prophet. Listen not to what the rabbis say on this. They have a veil on them.

Whilst I indeed "listen not" to what the rabbis say concerning Yeshua Meshikha (as Meshikha speaks for Himself), I fail to see what this has to do with what I'm discussing. BTW what the rabbis have to say on other matters (eg: Jewish history, the Hebrew language & ancient Hebrew culture) is not completely useless. No one knows the history and customs of a people better than those people themselves, more so than any outsider can ever hope to no matter how prestigious his/her credentials are. I remember St. Basil saying something like "take only the honey" (what is compatible with the Faith) when studying non-Christian literature or views, and Rabbinical literature is not completely devoid of "honey".

Anybody who rejects Nicea is outside the True Apostolic Church founded by the Apostles and has in effect created their own schismatic group. Nicea was accepted by all Bishops appointed by all Apostles, including the COE in 410 A.D.- this makes it the one and only true Ecumenical council and whoever goes against it should be cutoff from the Church. Again who cares for what the Rabbis say about Nicea...

I'm sorry but I don't remember posting a Rabbinical opinion concerning Nicaea, in case I missed something can you show me exactly where I did this? What I said was that the Council of Jamnia does not compare with the Council of Nicaea in the sense that (assuming of course that it even took place) it did not have attendants from all of Jewry - just the Palestinian Hillel Pharisees (unlike the Council of Nicaea which had attendants from all of Christendom) and that's one reason why most Jews don't take it very seriously. Katalaves? The Council of Jamnia may have been an actual historical council but it was certainly not an "ecumenical" council it was a local (and sectarian) one.

The Apostle Jude makes use of the Deuterocanonicals in his letter, the COE has never declared a canon either, though it holds those books in less regard to the ones canonized in Jamnia. The Rabbis have an axe to grind with the LXX because it was completed before Christianity and bears witness to the Messiah and the lying pen of the scribes who changed scripture in the Tiberian Yeshivas.

How is this relevent to what I've been discussing, i.e. whether the LXX is the first "Jewish Authorized Version"?

Nazarene, the idea that the Masoretic text is a faithful agenda free translation of the original Hebrew is laughable.

And where exactly did I state that it is, please do enlighten me?

If you think I exaggerate, I can get the blessed Deacon of Peshitta.org Paul Younan to say and show you that the LXX and Peshitta Tanakh contains the original teachings in a very literal translation, that the LXX contains the original Hebrew.

Not necessary, I've already been in the habit of studying EVERY ancient Tanakh version to the best of my ability for quite some time now. Because they are all witnesses to the orginal scrolls which are now lost to the sands of time. The MT is not my be all and end all, it's merely my starting point because it's the most complete Tanakh in the original languages. Of course the pre-Masoretic translations contain readings which are older and (usually) closer to the originals and I do take these readings from the LXX AND OTHER TEXTS into consideration, and then extra-Biblical literature, etc. But because these texts are translations I cannot overlook the important issue of mistranslation - none of these texts are 100% error free, which is why I will always rely chiefly upon the original languages - not texts in the original languages but the languages themselves (Hebrew & Aramaic).

Isa, you won't convince her with Greek primacy. It is sufficient to say that the Old Testament used by the oldest continuing Judaism (that of Iraq) is the Peshitta Tanakh, and that this text does not have its origin after Christianity or in the LXX (or the targums like that of Onkelos/Aquila).

After looking at the Hebrew texts (MT, DSS & Samaritan Torah) these Aramaic translations are what I always consult next, though the online resources are unfortunately lacking so it's more difficult. Reason is because Aramaic is the closest related language to Hebrew making it the easiest language to translate into from Hebrew, therefore reducing the chances of mistranslation. I have found the Peshitta Tanakh has fewer errors than the LXX which illustrates my point, the Targums are not literal translations but are still very useful for understanding the Hebrew text.

Also Nazarene will still have to account for why Middle East Yemenite Jews use the Aleppo codex instead of the MT if the MT is so faithful as claimed.

As I said to Fr. Ambrose earlier "text" (i.e. text type) and "canon" are not the same thing, and I will now add that "text" and "manuscript" are not the same thing either. The Aleppo Codex is Masoretic, i.e. it belongs to the group of mss that are classified as the "Masoretic Text" because it has the same readings as the other mss in that classication, eg: the more widely known BHS:

The Aleppo Codex (Hebrew: כֶּתֶר אֲרָם צוֹבָא‎Keter Aram Soba) is a medieval bound manuscript of the Hebrew Bible. The codex was written in the 10th century CE.[1]

It is considered the most authoritative document in the masorah ("transmission"), the tradition by which the Hebrew Scriptures have been preserved from generation to generation.[2] Surviving examples of responsa literature show that the Aleppo Codex was consulted by far-flung Jewish scholars throughout the Middle Ages, and modern studies have shown it to be the most accurate representation of Masoretic principles in any extant manuscript, containing very few errors among the millions of orthographic details that make up the Masoretic text. Thus, the Aleppo Codex is seen as the most authoritative source document for both the original biblical text and its vocalization (cantillation).


Let's not forget Ramban was considered a heretic by most Jews for a long time before general acceptance of his code of law.

Not relevant to the discussion IMO, but anyway.

Nazarene, I suggest reading this:

http://www.pshitta.org/english/original.php
http://www.hebrewaramaic.org/pdf/Ancient_Versions_of_the_Bible.pdf

For you to see that the Peshitta Tanakh is a better option. Akhi Yaaqub knows what he's talking about.

I have read Yaaqub's work and have already how the Peshitta Tanakh is overall better than the MT and LXX thank you. Yes I don't doubt that Yaaqub knows what he's talking about considering his background though I'm dissapointed that he seems to have abandoned his translation work, sigh.

Quote
The NT quoting/alluding to the Anagignoskomena disproves the seal of approval of the rabbis on the Masoretic text.

Devil's advocate arguments:

Saint Paul quotes while talking to his Greek audience Epictetus and Menander, also I think Euripedes. Should we include them in the canon too?  Wink

Also: the COE does not hold the last five books as canonical (or rather, the COE has not uttered a canon yet and holds these with considerably less regard). These quote the Anagignoskomena the most (ie: Jude with Enoch, Revelation makes use of a tradition not written in the main canon books also).

Rafa Anagignoskomena does not refer to Psuedographical books (like Enoch) and books found amongst the DSS (eg: the Odes of Solomon) which were never in anyone's canon. This is what St. Athanasius defined as Anagignoskomena:

Quote from: Eastern Orthodox Bible
St. Athanasius' list is as follows:

4. There are, then, of the Old Testament, twenty-two books in number; for, as I have heard, it is handed down that this is the number of the letters among the Hebrews; their respective order and names being as follows. The first is Genesis, then Exodus, next Leviticus, after that Numbers and then Deuteronomy. Following these there is Joshua the son of Nun, then Judges, then Ruth. And again, after these four books of Kings, the first and second (a) being reckoned as one book and so likewise the third and fourth (b) as one book. And again, the first and second of the Chronicles are reckoned as one book. Again Ezra, the first and second (c) are similarly one book. After these there is the book of Psalms, then the Proverbs, next Ecclesiastes and the Song of Songs. Job follows, then the Prophets, the Twelve [minor prophets] being reckoned as one book. Then Isaiah, one book, then Jeremiah with Baruch, Lamentations and the Epistle, one book; afterwards Ezekiel and Daniel, each one book. Thus far constitutes the Old Testament.

Notice that this Jewish canon which is not from Israel (post Jamnia pre Masoretic text) is not identical to the current Jewish canon. This earlier Jewish canon (which wasn't the only Jewish canon back then) included Baruch and the Epistle of Jeremiah but excluded the book of Esther - the entire book. Again the supposed Council of Jamnia was not an eceumenical council so it shouldn't be surprising.

Quote from: Eastern Orthodox Bible
7. But for the sake of greater exactness I add this also, writing under obligation, as it were. There are other books besides these, indeed not received as canonical but having been appointed by our fathers to be read (anagignoskomena) to those just approaching and wishing to be instructed in the word of godliness: Wisdom of Solomon, Wisdom of Sirach, Esther, Judith, Tobit and that which is called the Teaching of the Apostles and the Shepherd. But the former, my brethren, are included in the Canon, the latter being merely read; nor is there any place a mention of secret writings. But such are the invention of heretics, who indeed write them whenever they wish, bestowing upon them their approval and assigning to them a date, that so, using them as if they were ancient writings, they find a means by which to lead astray the simple-minded.

Notice that Esther is classified as Anagignoskomena and not as canonical. Esther didn't have strong canonical status in the early centuries of the Faith, and it is not present among the Qumran texts or allude to in NT at all. For these reasons I am strongly leaning towards the possibility that Esther wasn't known in 1st century Israel also because the Festival of Purim is not alluded to in the NT at all, and that perhaps Esther really belongs in the Babylonian Talmud.

Could you post a complete list of all the Anagignoskomena quotes in the entire NT Isa?

Here is a complete list of books alluded in the NT which are not found in the Masoretic canon: http://www.bombaxo.com/allusions.html. And notice that, suprise suprise Esther is not there.

Its more important to me that whenever the NT quotes the scriptures the quotes (whether they be in the Peshitta or Greek NT) they are quoting from a text which is...NOT the MT!

Quite a pointless statement as the MT didn't exist in the 1st century.

That's the most damning evidence that the MT was a tampered version of the scriptures due to polemics with Christianity. So this is something of singular importance to me personally, since half of Christendom is using an old testament which is unreliable. It's scary really if you think about it.

The fact that many Jews over the years were and still are able to see Yeshua of Nazareth in the MT proves that even a deliberately tampered text cannot thwart the power of the Holy Spirit.

Isa, argue from the Syriac tradition in favor of the accepted orthodoxy.

Isa is free to argue from whatever tradition he wants.

Assyrian Tradition that is. I know Nazarene respects the Assyrian Church enormously.

I sure do.

The "there were no Christians East of the Euphrates" sounds weak for anybody familiar with the COE, so argue from 100% pure COE tradition which I'm sure your familiar with.

So what exactly do I need to be convinced of?

Nazarene has an enormous problem accepting the authority of the Apostles as well.

And the proof for this?

She doesn't understand the concept of laying on of hands, Apostolic succession, nor the rabbinic equivalent of Semikha.

I do understand this concept, I understand it enough to know that authority does not mean infallibility. Fortunately I've seen a healthy level of objectivity amongst most of the Orthodox members here regarding the Fathers, and plenty of admission that they can be wrong. No individual or group is ever going be right about everything all the time. The Saducees carried the line of the Aaronic Priesthood through the laying of hands also but what does that matter if they rejected the Prophets, cheated people, dishonoured the Temple and crucified the Messiah? God is no respector of persons, He couldn't care less about fancy titles, prestige and heritage, He can make those things disappear in an instant. Sincere devotion, works of love and wilful obedience are what matters to Him, these are the things that define holiness.

At least that's the impression I get when she says "so what?" to what St. Ireneus would have to say.

I realize that my "so what" response was rather vague but in context of the quote above it, I meant "so what" in the sense that the above point was moot because the 72 only translated the Torah.

Nazarene is a friend of mine by the way, we know each other.

Hey Rafa you wanna PM your skype name/messenger name so we can have real chat sometime?
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« Reply #25 on: March 07, 2010, 06:29:13 PM »

Shalom Fr. Ambrose,


No it's not, the first and only "Jewish Authorized Version" is the Masoretic text.


Dear Nazarene,

Are you really not aware that you carry the curse of the rabbis
after the destruction of the temple, the very same rabbis who
approved what became the Masoretic text, the text which you
strive so hard to defend?

Here is the curse they lay upon you as a Nazarene:

"May the Nozrim and Minim disappear in the twinkling of an eye.
May they be removed from the book of the living and not be
inscribed among the just."

I'm very much aware of this curse and I'm also very much aware that any curse uttered against me is no match for the power of the Holy Spirit. Sticks and stones can break my bones but dead mens' curses can never harm me. BTW concerning curses the Torah has this to say:

Exodus 20:5-6 For I YHWH your God am an impassioned God, visiting the guilt of the parents upon the children, up to the third and the fourth generations of those who reject Me, but showing kindness to the thousandth generation of those who love Me and keep My commandments.

A curse is binding up to the third or fourth generation then it is lifted. And that goes for all curses including the one the Jews who rejected Messiah pronounced upon themselves and their children - that curse was lifted a long time ago.

Jewish Christians went on worshipping in the synagogues until
the Jewish Council of Jamnia in the year 90.

A: your timing is a little off. Jewish Christian presence in Jewish synagogues decreased significantly from this point but it wasn't until the Bar Kochba rebellion (AD 132–136) did Church and Synagogue permanently separate.

B: The Council of Jamnia is a hypothesis not a proven fact. A Rabbinical meeting did occur at least once at Jamnia around AD 90, but it was more likely a series of meetings not an actual Council where everything was decided and set in stone. It was certainly not ecumenical, it was a purely local and sectarian event.

The Council of Jamnia,
the Council which approved the Masoretic text,

The Masoretic text wasn't compiled until around AD 900. Perhaps you meant to say the Jewish OT canon? I believe that the Council of Jamnia (or some meeting at Jamnia) was the first attempt at forming an OT canon but history shows us that the Jews outside of Israel continued to have different canons for quite a few centuries later and that what books made up the canon changed from time to time.

added a
prayer cursing Christians to the Friday evening prayers and this made it
impossible for Christians to continue praying in the synagogues. It brought
about the final separation of the Jewish Christian community and the
synagogue.

Again you're a bit off the mark with the facts. Yes a curse on the Nazarenes (and other "minim", i.e. heretics) was added to the Benedictions of the Amidah around this time. But this did not discourage all Nazarenes from continuing to pray in the synagogues. Firstly there were still some "secret believers" among the Pharisees (like Nicodemus & Joseph of Arimathea), they would just prayer the Lord's Prayer instead of the Amidah (as the Apostles advised in Didache). Also not all synagogue leaders agreed with the Rabbis to add this curse to the Amidah and would continue to pray the original Amidah instead. You can never generalize, there are always exceptions. Rabbinical Judaism as we know it today took centuries to unify and even today it's divided into different movements. The Rabbis were not of "one mind" in the Talmud you see opposition to their views documented and different Rabbis arguing amongst themselves. When some new Mitzvah is passed it may be accepted by the majority right away but not by everyone.

And again the final separation between Jews who believed in Yeshua and Jews who did not (in Israel at least) would only occur when the "false Messiah" Bar Kochba came into the picture.

Here is something I wrote elsewhere...

The Jewish anti-Christian attitude started to come to the fore very early
after the death of Christ.

The separation of Jews and Christians took place in stages. Jewish
Christians throughout the Empire stopped attending synagogues as Jews began
to denounce them to the Roman authorities for belonging to a forbidden sect.

Yes this is true, though I would say that the Jews outside of Israel began throwing the Nazarenes out of the synagogues earlier than the Jews in Israel.


The separation was fully complete in 90 AD, by the choice of the Jews.

Er no, it was at the Bar Kochba rebellion and the choice was mutual. Finally the Jews could say to those pesky Nazarenes and Christians: "look we have found the real Messiah!", or so they thought. The Nazarenes and Christians in the Holy Land were determined not to follow after who they knew was a "false Messiah", while the Jews were equally determined to follow after who they believed was the "promised Messiah" who would free them from Roman occupation. And so Church and Synagogue officially parted ways permanently.

The Jewish Council of Jamnia held in 90 AD was an explicitly anti-Christian
council

It was anti-everything the Hillel Pharisees were against.

which (among other things) added a benediction-cursing prayer to the
worship service for the express purpose of excluding Christians from
participating in Jewish Sabbath worship.

It did but this exclusion wasn't completely fulfilled right away.

Here is a quote from the book "John and Jamnia: How the Break Occurred
between Jews and Christians", by Fredric Manns (1988), pages 25-26.:

"Jews who believed Jesus was the Messiah continued to frequent the
synagogue. By doing this, they followed the example of the Apostles who went
to the temple every day for prayer. James [for example] ... spent all day
praying on his knees in the temple, according to Eusebius of Caesarea. After
the destruction of the Temple, the Jews decided to break with those who
recognized Jesus as the Messiah.

Under Rabbi Gamaliel they inserted the 'benediction-curse of the Minim' into
the prayer called Shemone Esre.

The text of this benediction, as it appears in the Geniza of Cairo is as
follows:

'May apostates have no hope and the kingdom of
impertinence be uprooted in our day. May the Nozrim
and Minim disappear in the twinkling of an eye. May
they be removed from the book of the living and not
be inscribed among the just. Blessed art thou, O Lord,
who cast down the proud.'

Three categories of people are affected by this 'benediction-curse'.

1. First of all, Jews who collaborate with the Romans,

2. the Roman empire itself, and finally,

3. Jews who follow Jesus.

The latter are designated under the titles of Nozrim and Minim ... (Nozrim
means "followers of the Nazarene and is still used for Christians in Israel,
for example, modern Israeli legislation dealing with Christians terms us as
Nozrim.)

Minim also referred to other "heretics" like the Evyonim (Ebionites).

The establishment of this 'benediction' was therefore the equivalent of
driving the Minim and Nozrim [Christians] from the synagogue."

When the Jews changed their liturgy so that Christians would be calling down
curses upon themselves if they participated in it, the Jews who believed in
Jesus found themselves completely excluded from temple worship.



Well not completely, they found ways around it - they just didn't pray that particular prayer.

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« Reply #26 on: March 08, 2010, 03:21:21 AM »

The Apostles did not quote the MT Nazarene. Whoever told that to you lies

Care to show where exactly I supposedly claimed that they did? You're not paying attention, I specifically said this:

Quote from: Nazarene
The Apostles didn't quote any text

because they quoted Peshitta Tanakh

No as the Peshitta Tanakh was virtually unknown outside of Mesopotamia and is in fact completely unrelated to the Peshitta NT:

Quote from: Paul Younan
I would *not* expect that the Peshitta NT quotes the Peshitta OT in any manner.

Reason being, despite the fact that they share a common name, the two texts are totally unrelated. I think the common name confuses people.

If you carefully study the nuances of the Aramaic of the POT, it is a very rigid translation of the Hebrew in a very Mesopotamian-style dialect (in particular, it contains many "Chaldeanisms" in addition to its "Hebraicisms".) This is exactly what we would expect of an Aramaic translation made by Jews in Babylonian Captivity. However, this version was not used outside of Mesopotamia.

If you carefully study the nuances of the Aramaic of the PNT, it is a very natural Aramaic of Palestinian origin. The reason why I say that is, it contains many Hellenisms. This is exactly what we would expect of an Aramaic work made by Jews who lived under Graeco-Roman domination. The fact that it contains these Hellenisms is important to our Aramaic Primacy cause.....because if it didn't, then it couldn't have been written in 1st-century Palestine.

and a version of the Tanakh which resembles more the targums and LXX (the Hebrew "contained" in the LXX is by the way more ancient).

You mean versions of the Hebrew Tanakh. Sure there were different texts with variant readings, some of which agree with the MT, others with the LXX and still others with other OT texts. Also the Samaritan Khumash has a lot of agreements with the LXX Pentateuch.

The MT is a rabbinic "standardized" version which does not make use of the original Hebrew. Don't be fooled by the rabbis.

Care to show me where exactly I supposedly claimed that the MT is the original Hebrew?

The "great" Ramban (Maimonides) called the True Messiah a false prophet. Listen not to what the rabbis say on this. They have a veil on them.

Whilst I indeed "listen not" to what the rabbis say concerning Yeshua Meshikha (as Meshikha speaks for Himself), I fail to see what this has to do with what I'm discussing. BTW what the rabbis have to say on other matters (eg: Jewish history, the Hebrew language & ancient Hebrew culture) is not completely useless. No one knows the history and customs of a people better than those people themselves, more so than any outsider can ever hope to no matter how prestigious his/her credentials are. I remember St. Basil saying something like "take only the honey" (what is compatible with the Faith) when studying non-Christian literature or views, and Rabbinical literature is not completely devoid of "honey".

Anybody who rejects Nicea is outside the True Apostolic Church founded by the Apostles and has in effect created their own schismatic group. Nicea was accepted by all Bishops appointed by all Apostles, including the COE in 410 A.D.- this makes it the one and only true Ecumenical council and whoever goes against it should be cutoff from the Church. Again who cares for what the Rabbis say about Nicea...

I'm sorry but I don't remember posting a Rabbinical opinion concerning Nicaea, in case I missed something can you show me exactly where I did this? What I said was that the Council of Jamnia does not compare with the Council of Nicaea in the sense that (assuming of course that it even took place) it did not have attendants from all of Jewry - just the Palestinian Hillel Pharisees (unlike the Council of Nicaea which had attendants from all of Christendom) and that's one reason why most Jews don't take it very seriously. Katalaves? The Council of Jamnia may have been an actual historical council but it was certainly not an "ecumenical" council it was a local (and sectarian) one.

The Apostle Jude makes use of the Deuterocanonicals in his letter, the COE has never declared a canon either, though it holds those books in less regard to the ones canonized in Jamnia. The Rabbis have an axe to grind with the LXX because it was completed before Christianity and bears witness to the Messiah and the lying pen of the scribes who changed scripture in the Tiberian Yeshivas.

How is this relevent to what I've been discussing, i.e. whether the LXX is the first "Jewish Authorized Version"?

Nazarene, the idea that the Masoretic text is a faithful agenda free translation of the original Hebrew is laughable.

And where exactly did I state that it is, please do enlighten me?

If you think I exaggerate, I can get the blessed Deacon of Peshitta.org Paul Younan to say and show you that the LXX and Peshitta Tanakh contains the original teachings in a very literal translation, that the LXX contains the original Hebrew.

Not necessary, I've already been in the habit of studying EVERY ancient Tanakh version to the best of my ability for quite some time now. Because they are all witnesses to the orginal scrolls which are now lost to the sands of time. The MT is not my be all and end all, it's merely my starting point because it's the most complete Tanakh in the original languages. Of course the pre-Masoretic translations contain readings which are older and (usually) closer to the originals and I do take these readings from the LXX AND OTHER TEXTS into consideration, and then extra-Biblical literature, etc. But because these texts are translations I cannot overlook the important issue of mistranslation - none of these texts are 100% error free, which is why I will always rely chiefly upon the original languages - not texts in the original languages but the languages themselves (Hebrew & Aramaic).

Isa, you won't convince her with Greek primacy. It is sufficient to say that the Old Testament used by the oldest continuing Judaism (that of Iraq) is the Peshitta Tanakh, and that this text does not have its origin after Christianity or in the LXX (or the targums like that of Onkelos/Aquila).

After looking at the Hebrew texts (MT, DSS & Samaritan Torah) these Aramaic translations are what I always consult next, though the online resources are unfortunately lacking so it's more difficult. Reason is because Aramaic is the closest related language to Hebrew making it the easiest language to translate into from Hebrew, therefore reducing the chances of mistranslation. I have found the Peshitta Tanakh has fewer errors than the LXX which illustrates my point, the Targums are not literal translations but are still very useful for understanding the Hebrew text.

Also Nazarene will still have to account for why Middle East Yemenite Jews use the Aleppo codex instead of the MT if the MT is so faithful as claimed.

As I said to Fr. Ambrose earlier "text" (i.e. text type) and "canon" are not the same thing, and I will now add that "text" and "manuscript" are not the same thing either. The Aleppo Codex is Masoretic, i.e. it belongs to the group of mss that are classified as the "Masoretic Text" because it has the same readings as the other mss in that classication, eg: the more widely known BHS:

The Aleppo Codex (Hebrew: כֶּתֶר אֲרָם צוֹבָא‎Keter Aram Soba) is a medieval bound manuscript of the Hebrew Bible. The codex was written in the 10th century CE.[1]

It is considered the most authoritative document in the masorah ("transmission"), the tradition by which the Hebrew Scriptures have been preserved from generation to generation.[2] Surviving examples of responsa literature show that the Aleppo Codex was consulted by far-flung Jewish scholars throughout the Middle Ages, and modern studies have shown it to be the most accurate representation of Masoretic principles in any extant manuscript, containing very few errors among the millions of orthographic details that make up the Masoretic text. Thus, the Aleppo Codex is seen as the most authoritative source document for both the original biblical text and its vocalization (cantillation).


Let's not forget Ramban was considered a heretic by most Jews for a long time before general acceptance of his code of law.

Not relevant to the discussion IMO, but anyway.

Nazarene, I suggest reading this:

http://www.pshitta.org/english/original.php
http://www.hebrewaramaic.org/pdf/Ancient_Versions_of_the_Bible.pdf

For you to see that the Peshitta Tanakh is a better option. Akhi Yaaqub knows what he's talking about.

I have read Yaaqub's work and have already how the Peshitta Tanakh is overall better than the MT and LXX thank you. Yes I don't doubt that Yaaqub knows what he's talking about considering his background though I'm dissapointed that he seems to have abandoned his translation work, sigh.

Quote
The NT quoting/alluding to the Anagignoskomena disproves the seal of approval of the rabbis on the Masoretic text.

Devil's advocate arguments:

Saint Paul quotes while talking to his Greek audience Epictetus and Menander, also I think Euripedes. Should we include them in the canon too?  Wink

Also: the COE does not hold the last five books as canonical (or rather, the COE has not uttered a canon yet and holds these with considerably less regard). These quote the Anagignoskomena the most (ie: Jude with Enoch, Revelation makes use of a tradition not written in the main canon books also).

Rafa Anagignoskomena does not refer to Psuedographical books (like Enoch) and books found amongst the DSS (eg: the Odes of Solomon) which were never in anyone's canon. This is what St. Athanasius defined as Anagignoskomena:

Quote from: Eastern Orthodox Bible
St. Athanasius' list is as follows:

4. There are, then, of the Old Testament, twenty-two books in number; for, as I have heard, it is handed down that this is the number of the letters among the Hebrews; their respective order and names being as follows. The first is Genesis, then Exodus, next Leviticus, after that Numbers and then Deuteronomy. Following these there is Joshua the son of Nun, then Judges, then Ruth. And again, after these four books of Kings, the first and second (a) being reckoned as one book and so likewise the third and fourth (b) as one book. And again, the first and second of the Chronicles are reckoned as one book. Again Ezra, the first and second (c) are similarly one book. After these there is the book of Psalms, then the Proverbs, next Ecclesiastes and the Song of Songs. Job follows, then the Prophets, the Twelve [minor prophets] being reckoned as one book. Then Isaiah, one book, then Jeremiah with Baruch, Lamentations and the Epistle, one book; afterwards Ezekiel and Daniel, each one book. Thus far constitutes the Old Testament.

Notice that this Jewish canon which is not from Israel (post Jamnia pre Masoretic text) is not identical to the current Jewish canon. This earlier Jewish canon (which wasn't the only Jewish canon back then) included Baruch and the Epistle of Jeremiah but excluded the book of Esther - the entire book. Again the supposed Council of Jamnia was not an eceumenical council so it shouldn't be surprising.

Quote from: Eastern Orthodox Bible
7. But for the sake of greater exactness I add this also, writing under obligation, as it were. There are other books besides these, indeed not received as canonical but having been appointed by our fathers to be read (anagignoskomena) to those just approaching and wishing to be instructed in the word of godliness: Wisdom of Solomon, Wisdom of Sirach, Esther, Judith, Tobit and that which is called the Teaching of the Apostles and the Shepherd. But the former, my brethren, are included in the Canon, the latter being merely read; nor is there any place a mention of secret writings. But such are the invention of heretics, who indeed write them whenever they wish, bestowing upon them their approval and assigning to them a date, that so, using them as if they were ancient writings, they find a means by which to lead astray the simple-minded.

Notice that Esther is classified as Anagignoskomena and not as canonical. Esther didn't have strong canonical status in the early centuries of the Faith, and it is not present among the Qumran texts or allude to in NT at all. For these reasons I am strongly leaning towards the possibility that Esther wasn't known in 1st century Israel also because the Festival of Purim is not alluded to in the NT at all, and that perhaps Esther really belongs in the Babylonian Talmud.

Could you post a complete list of all the Anagignoskomena quotes in the entire NT Isa?

Here is a complete list of books alluded in the NT which are not found in the Masoretic canon: http://www.bombaxo.com/allusions.html. And notice that, suprise suprise Esther is not there.

Its more important to me that whenever the NT quotes the scriptures the quotes (whether they be in the Peshitta or Greek NT) they are quoting from a text which is...NOT the MT!

Quite a pointless statement as the MT didn't exist in the 1st century.

That's the most damning evidence that the MT was a tampered version of the scriptures due to polemics with Christianity. So this is something of singular importance to me personally, since half of Christendom is using an old testament which is unreliable. It's scary really if you think about it.

The fact that many Jews over the years were and still are able to see Yeshua of Nazareth in the MT proves that even a deliberately tampered text cannot thwart the power of the Holy Spirit.

Isa, argue from the Syriac tradition in favor of the accepted orthodoxy.

Isa is free to argue from whatever tradition he wants.

Assyrian Tradition that is. I know Nazarene respects the Assyrian Church enormously.

I sure do.

The "there were no Christians East of the Euphrates" sounds weak for anybody familiar with the COE, so argue from 100% pure COE tradition which I'm sure your familiar with.

So what exactly do I need to be convinced of?

Nazarene has an enormous problem accepting the authority of the Apostles as well.

And the proof for this?

She doesn't understand the concept of laying on of hands, Apostolic succession, nor the rabbinic equivalent of Semikha.

I do understand this concept, I understand it enough to know that authority does not mean infallibility. Fortunately I've seen a healthy level of objectivity amongst most of the Orthodox members here regarding the Fathers, and plenty of admission that they can be wrong. No individual or group is ever going be right about everything all the time. The Saducees carried the line of the Aaronic Priesthood through the laying of hands also but what does that matter if they rejected the Prophets, cheated people, dishonoured the Temple and crucified the Messiah? God is no respector of persons, He couldn't care less about fancy titles, prestige and heritage, He can make those things disappear in an instant. Sincere devotion, works of love and wilful obedience are what matters to Him, these are the things that define holiness.

At least that's the impression I get when she says "so what?" to what St. Ireneus would have to say.

I realize that my "so what" response was rather vague but in context of the quote above it, I meant "so what" in the sense that the above point was moot because the 72 only translated the Torah.

Nazarene is a friend of mine by the way, we know each other.

Hey Rafa you wanna PM your skype name/messenger name so we can have real chat sometime?


Quote
No as the Peshitta Tanakh was virtually unknown outside of Mesopotamia and is in fact completely unrelated to the Peshitta NT:

Thats what I said...the Peshitta Tanakh is the proto-masoretic text, the Ezra Torah, or at least a very literal translation. Its rendering of the Torah is the same cited by the Apostles. Irish Hermit gave a great example from LXX which is supported by Peshitta Tanakh, as there are also hundreds of others. I will give you a list somebody compiled at peshitta.org...

Quote
this version was not used outside of Mesopotamia

More reason to use it. Don't use something some person in the Rhineland tampered with 1000 years later.

Quote
Whilst I indeed "listen not" to what the rabbis say concerning Yeshua Meshikha (as Meshikha speaks for Himself), I fail to see what this has to do with what I'm discussing. BTW what the rabbis have to say on other matters (eg: Jewish history, the Hebrew language & ancient Hebrew culture) is not completely useless. No one knows the history and customs of a people better than those people themselves, more so than any outsider can ever hope to no matter how prestigious his/her credentials are. I remember St. Basil saying something like "take only the honey" (what is compatible with the Faith) when studying non-Christian literature or views, and Rabbinical literature is not completely devoid of "honey".

I have yet to form an opinion on this. Just remember though...a little leaven leavens the whole lump. Further the use of the oral tradition in the talmud is banned as per Acts 15. The most ancient sections of the Talmud (the mishnah) are very intensely anti-christian being written by Sanhedrin members and their acquaintances.

Quote
How is this relevent to what I've been discussing, i.e. whether the LXX is the first "Jewish Authorized Version"?

It is relevant in that before Christianity the Deuterocanonicals were used extremely extensively by Jews (ie: we would know absolutely nothing about "Hannukah" if not for these books the rabbis threw out, extensive commentaries to Sirach and other books are inthe talmud as well). Any copy of the Torah that excludes them has an agenda attached to it. I also don't buy the "22 letters of the Hebrew Alphabet= 22 books" psychological argument some make (ever heard that one?  Wink )  because Jasher was part of the canon and is lost (it was quoted by Samuel), yet Hebrew has not an extra letter for the lost scroll.

Quote
Not necessary, I've already been in the habit of studying EVERY ancient Tanakh version to the best of my ability for quite some time now. Because they are all witnesses to the orginal scrolls which are now lost to the sands of time. The MT is not my be all and end all, it's merely my starting point because it's the most complete Tanakh in the original languages. Of course the pre-Masoretic translations contain readings which are older and (usually) closer to the originals and I do take these readings from the LXX AND OTHER TEXTS into consideration, and then extra-Biblical literature, etc. But because these texts are translations I cannot overlook the important issue of mistranslation - none of these texts are 100% error free, which is why I will always rely chiefly upon the original languages - not texts in the original languages but the languages themselves (Hebrew & Aramaic).

 Roll Eyes

This is exactly my point. It is NOT in the original Hebrew! The rabbis didn't just change words or sentences, they devised new ways to articulate the language, grammatical structure, syntax, change the meaning of words, to instill an extensive commentary within their Tanakh which you wouldn't even know about unless you inspected closely. Which is why I say the LXX is as much a translation as the MT, and a more faithful one at that. Better yet, go to Peshitta Tanakh.

Quote
I have read Yaaqub's work and have already how the Peshitta Tanakh is overall better than the MT and LXX thank you. Yes I don't doubt that Yaaqub knows what he's talking about considering his background though I'm dissapointed that he seems to have abandoned his translation work, sigh.

the poor guy...makes me very sad, he has a problem with his vision. A true scribe Yaaqub is.

Quote
Quite a pointless statement as the MT didn't exist in the 1st century.

But the source text did...proving that the Apostles quoted the orginal and the current MT does not reflect it.

Quote
The fact that many Jews over the years were and still are able to see Yeshua of Nazareth in the MT proves that even a deliberately tampered text cannot thwart the power of the Holy Spirit.

I agree, in fact the masoretes in a way performed us a service, a careful orthodox Jew can do his detective work and find out the truth. I'm more worried however about say, Baptists or ultra-nominal jews and so forth who think the MT fell from the sky which is ridiculous.

Quote
And the proof for this?

erm...believing everything the rabbis say? Saying St.Ireneaus is not worth listening to when he received ordination from Eleutheros who traces his line of teaching from St. Paul and St. Peter himself?

Quote
I do understand this concept, I understand it enough to know that authority does not mean infallibility. Fortunately I've seen a healthy level of objectivity amongst most of the Orthodox members here regarding the Fathers, and plenty of admission that they can be wrong. No individual or group is ever going be right about everything all the time. The Saducees carried the line of the Aaronic Priesthood through the laying of hands also but what does that matter if they rejected the Prophets, cheated people, dishonoured the Temple and crucified the Messiah? God is no respector of persons, He couldn't care less about fancy titles, prestige and heritage, He can make those things disappear in an instant. Sincere devotion, works of love and wilful obedience are what matters to Him, these are the things that define holiness.

The Gates of Hell will never prevail against the Church Nazarene, he will be with us until the end of the Age.


Will pm you over the skype later. Dont have mic though.
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« Reply #27 on: March 16, 2013, 03:41:29 PM »

What do you think about St Athanasius' claim that the Book of Esther should not really have been included in the OT? And what do you think about the festival of Purim?

Nazarene wrote about St Athanasius' view:
Rafa Anagignoskomena does not refer to Psuedographical books... This is what St. Athanasius defined as Anagignoskomena:

Quote from: Eastern Orthodox Bible
St. Athanasius' list is as follows:

4. There are, then, of the Old Testament, twenty-two books in number; for, as I have heard, it is handed down that this is the number of the letters among the Hebrews; their respective order and names being as follows. The first is Genesis, then Exodus...

Notice that this Jewish canon which is not from Israel (post Jamnia pre Masoretic text) is not identical to the current Jewish canon. This earlier Jewish canon (which wasn't the only Jewish canon back then)... excluded the book of Esther - the entire book. Again the supposed Council of Jamnia was not an eceumenical council so it shouldn't be surprising.

Quote from: Eastern Orthodox Bible
7. There are other books besides these, indeed not received as canonical but having been appointed by our fathers to be read (anagignoskomena) to those just approaching and wishing to be instructed in the word of godliness: Wisdom of Solomon, Wisdom of Sirach, Esther.... But... the latter being merely read; nor is there any place a mention of secret writings. But such are the invention of heretics, who indeed write them whenever they wish, bestowing upon them their approval and assigning to them a date, that so, using them as if they were ancient writings, they find a means by which to lead astray the simple-minded.

Notice that Esther is classified as Anagignoskomena and not as canonical. Esther didn't have strong canonical status in the early centuries of the Faith, and it is not present among the Qumran texts or allude to in NT at all... the Festival of Purim is not alluded to in the NT at all, [For these reasons I am strongly leaning towards the possibility...] that perhaps Esther really belongs in the Babylonian Talmud.

Here is a complete list of books alluded in the NT which are not found in the Masoretic canon: http://www.bombaxo.com/allusions.html. And notice that, suprise suprise Esther is not there.
It is included in the Orthodox Church's canonical Old Testament, so we have to go with that. But I don't know how to address the issues she raises. On a sidenote, the book is unusual in that it nowhere mentions God.

Furthermore, how should we feel about Purim as a celebration?
One one hand, the part about the people's escape from genocide is an inspiring and redemptive one. And the book of Esther talks about instituting a holiday for the events in the book.

On the other hand, one humanitarian Jewish writer has persuasively criticized another part of the holiday (at least as it has developed) as celebrating the deaths of Haman's family and very many Persians. And Nazarene has said that Purim is not mentioned in the New Testament.

In mentioning these criticisms, I want to mention a very sympathetic story a Jewish friend said about the Passover Seder, which commemorates a somewhat analogous event. In the Seder, the cups of wine representing the plagues are not fulled to the top, in a sorrowful remembrance of the Egyptians' suffering.

So how does one address the issues and (rightful?) criticisms, of the Book of Esther and Purim in particular from a humanitarian and Christian perspective?
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