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Author Topic: How canonical are the Deuterocanonical texts? Please critique this discussion.  (Read 2555 times) Average Rating: 0
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TheTrisagion
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« Reply #45 on: September 05, 2013, 04:53:51 PM »

Jesus also lived in Egypt which communications there would have been almost exclusively in Greek.

Greek was pretty much limited to Alexandria. Everywhere else the Egyptians spoke Coptic.

And also, why are we assuming that the Holy Family would've lived in an exclusively Greek or Coptic area?  It's not like there were no Jewish communities in Egypt within which to find refuge.  Plant roots in an ethnic ghetto and you may never have to learn the language of the host country: people in immigrant communities in the US prove this every day.   
I am assuming they were involved in a Jewish community.  The Jewish communities in Egypt were Hellenist Jews and therefore would have spoken Greek and used the Septuagint.
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« Reply #46 on: September 05, 2013, 05:05:22 PM »

I am assuming they were involved in a Jewish community.  The Jewish communities in Egypt were Hellenist Jews and therefore would have spoken Greek and used the Septuagint.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elephantine_papyri

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« Reply #47 on: September 05, 2013, 05:08:17 PM »

The Jewish communities in Egypt were Hellenist Jews and therefore would have spoken Greek and used the Septuagint.

[Citation Needed]
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« Reply #48 on: September 05, 2013, 05:12:26 PM »

The Jewish communities in Egypt were Hellenist Jews and therefore would have spoken Greek and used the Septuagint.

[Citation Needed]

The Septuagint itself proves that.

But, if you need others try Philo of Alexandria and Josephus.

They were Hellenists, Jews, Philo was Egyptian and they both accepted the Septuagint as Divinely Inspired.
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« Reply #49 on: September 05, 2013, 05:20:14 PM »

I am assuming they were involved in a Jewish community.  The Jewish communities in Egypt were Hellenist Jews and therefore would have spoken Greek and used the Septuagint.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elephantine_papyri


Yes, and if you read the wikipedia article, you will notice that it was used around 500 BC, well before Jesus' time.
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« Reply #50 on: September 05, 2013, 05:29:06 PM »

Dude, the Hebrew Tanakh is the Masoretic. The Targums are post-Christian translations done by Jews.

Quote
So? The targums were liturgical paraphrases of Scripture which initially were transmitted orally - there was a prohibition against writing them down. Nevertheless, the earliest written ones go back to the 1st century AD

But by the "next generation"? Not so much.

So you believe St. John himself wrote his Gospel, Epistles and Revelation when he was approaching 100?

St. Mark is traditionally believed to be St. Peter's disciple and interpreter/secretary. St. Prochoros was St. John's. St. Luke - St. Paul's. Matthew's Gospel is believed to be the translation of a Semitic original...


Quote
Philo was born and bred in Alexandria. Josephus says he wrote the Jewish Wars in Aramaic as pro-Roman propaganda for his fellow countrymen and then got help to translate it into Greek.
That doesn't have anything to do with his testimony, people said St. Paul was a heretic. What does baseless accusation and name-calling accomplish. Let's look at the historical record honestly.

Those were the Dead Sea Scrolls that did contain Aramaic Targums. They also contained Septuagint texts. But these are not the Aramaic Targums I am referring to. And I think you know that. The Targums outside of the DDS are 5th century. The minority fragments of the Aramaic Qumran Scrolls are indeed authoritative. But the 5th century Targums are not the same as the Qumran manuscripts.

Quote
5th century AD is the Talmud. There's plenty of Aramaic targums at Qumran long before that.
No, the Talmud is as old as the Masoretic. The Qumran scrolls should be differentiated from the Targums, as the Dead Sea Scrolls to clear up confusion.

Well most modern scholars (such as Ehrman and Metzger) tend to hold that view of the Gospel of John. The "next generation" seems to imply that it was someone who lived after the author. It's more likely that the author recited what he wanted to convey to a scribe or Messenger and had him write it down for him.

So, St. John may not be the author of St. John, but he would be the "co-author" because he is the one who is telling the scribe, who is the author, what to write.

Quote
Again, I don't think it's impossible that Jesus could speak Greek, but that's not the same as knowing how to read Greek, which makes all the difference in whether or not Jesus used the LXX.
Again, the Aramaic and Hebrew texts of the Middle Ages are not the same as those we have found in the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Dead Sea Scrolls read close to the Septuagint. When we say that "Christ used the Septuagint" we are not saying (I hope!) that Christ needed to speak Greek. Rather, he used a text (in Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic or whatever; all of them were present in 1st century Palestine as evidenced by the Dead Sea Scrolls) that contained readings that appear closer to those we have in the Septuagint in Greek today.

In other words, I am not saying that "Christ used the Septuagint Greek and never used the Hebrew" what I am saying is that Christ (and the Apostles) could have used any language, but that the readings of the Septuagint were given precedence over the readings of the MT Hebrew (10th AD) and Aramaic Targums & Peshitta (5 AD) and probably reflected those texts that were recovered at Qumran (1st AD).

Those same texts, by the way, I happen to be reading and investigating right now.  Cool
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« Reply #51 on: September 05, 2013, 05:29:48 PM »

Yes, and if you read the wikipedia article, you will notice that it was used around 500 BC, well before Jesus' time.

"It" being the temple of Elephantine, Aramaic or Muraoka's Grammar?  Undecided

I think the last of the Elephantine papyri was dated 399 BC, but that doesn't necessarily mean that the Aramaic language died out at that time in Egypt.
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« Reply #52 on: September 05, 2013, 05:34:33 PM »

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Again, I don't think it's impossible that Jesus could speak Greek, but that's not the same as knowing how to read Greek, which makes all the difference in whether or not Jesus used the LXX.  

And I also think it's ridiculous to take for granted that Pilate did not know Aramaic while also taking for granted that Jesus knew Greek.  A Roman governor surely had more access to education than his conquered populace, and I'd argue the same was the case for the Roman soldiers.  Whether or not Pilate and/or Roman soldiers could read Aramaic, I should think they would've learned how to communicate in Aramaic, or at least employ a translator...if Jesus and Pilate could speak with each other, it is not so obvious that the only conclusion is that Jesus was fluent in Greek.    

Pilate may have known Aramaic, but Greek was the administrative language, so trials and such would have been conducted in Greek.  I don't think the Roman government at the time was overly concerned at the possibility that some Jews may not received a fully fair trial because Greek wasn't there first language.  There were enough Hellenist Jews in Judea at the time that it would have been very common.  This situation would be like someone from Mexico moving to California at birth, living there for several years, then moving to Texas until he was 30 and then bouncing back and forth between Mexico and Texas.  They would be very fluent in Spanish and English. If they were Catholic, they might have a very limited knowledge of Latin from Mass.  Of the three languages, Hebrew was probably the least familiar to him because it was largely a liturgical language at the time.  He was stated to be uneducated in regards to theology, meaning that He was not a disciple of any Rabbi and formally trained in Scripture, but that doesn't necessarily mean He didn't know how to read and write.  If anything, we should be more amazed that He could read Hebrew more than anything else.

@ Romaios: If Aramaic was so popular in Egypt, why did they feel the need to have a Septuagint in the first place?
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« Reply #53 on: September 05, 2013, 05:35:05 PM »

Apparently, some of the posts got cut out.  They are in between my previous posts detailing the responses to the discussion topic.

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[Didyma] :  C.L., looking at that quotation out of context isn't a good indication of whether or not its "funky theology" or not. Many verses in the Protestant Bible are funky when taken out of context, and many parts of the Old Testament seem very funky by an standard.
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[Didyma] :  Well, M.G., Jesus was here referring to something that was at least very similar to part of the Apocrypha as scripture, so it's more telling than that.
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[Didyma] : B.C., they may have been talking about a hypothetical situation at the time, but Jesus referred to the hypothetical situation as scripture.
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« Reply #54 on: September 05, 2013, 05:37:41 PM »

I'm not sure what you guys are debating about, but I don't think it's what I asked for.  If you don't want to help me, just say so and I'll do it by myself.  Keep in mind, though, that these guys outnumber me and know a lot more about this than I do (even though I think they're ultimately wrong).
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« Reply #55 on: September 05, 2013, 05:39:04 PM »

@ Romaios: If Aramaic was so popular in Egypt, why did they feel the need to have a Septuagint in the first place?

Because the king of Egypt wanted to read the Hebrew Scriptures and have them in the library of Alexandria.
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« Reply #56 on: September 05, 2013, 05:45:32 PM »

I'm not sure what you guys are debating about, but I don't think it's what I asked for.  If you don't want to help me, just say so and I'll do it by myself.  Keep in mind, though, that these guys outnumber me and know a lot more about this than I do (even though I think they're ultimately wrong).

We gave you answers, unless you need something more specific.

We are debating about the Septuagint vs. the Aramaic/Hebrew texts. Which is funny because Orthodox Churches use the Septuagint, and never actually used those other texts. EOs or OOs. Only some Syrian Orthodox Churches are claiming that the Aramaic is superior. Copts, Armenians, Ethiopians, Georgians, Russians and Greeks don't.
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« Reply #57 on: September 05, 2013, 05:47:19 PM »

I'm not sure what you guys are debating about, but I don't think it's what I asked for.  If you don't want to help me, just say so and I'll do it by myself.  Keep in mind, though, that these guys outnumber me and know a lot more about this than I do (even though I think they're ultimately wrong).

To be honest, I had a hard time following the flow of the first posts  Undecided  If it helps some of my thoughts on the general topic can be found here:

Patristic Quotes of Deuterocanonical Texts (especially reply #30 for a sort of summation)
Question Concerning EO Canon of Scripture (especially reply #3 for what various writers have said)

Also see here (though that'd prbobaly be way too much to sift through, I admit!)
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« Reply #58 on: September 05, 2013, 05:49:45 PM »

I'm not sure what you guys are debating about, but I don't think it's what I asked for.  If you don't want to help me, just say so and I'll do it by myself.  Keep in mind, though, that these guys outnumber me and know a lot more about this than I do (even though I think they're ultimately wrong).

We gave you answers, unless you need something more specific.

We are debating about the Septuagint vs. the Aramaic/Hebrew texts. Which is funny because Orthodox Churches use the Septuagint, and never actually used those other texts. EOs or OOs. Only some Syrian Orthodox Churches are claiming that the Aramaic is superior. Copts, Armenians, Ethiopians, Georgians, Russians and Greeks don't.

What about the Latins?
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« Reply #59 on: September 05, 2013, 06:02:26 PM »

I'm not sure what you guys are debating about, but I don't think it's what I asked for.  If you don't want to help me, just say so and I'll do it by myself.  Keep in mind, though, that these guys outnumber me and know a lot more about this than I do (even though I think they're ultimately wrong).

We gave you answers, unless you need something more specific.

We are debating about the Septuagint vs. the Aramaic/Hebrew texts. Which is funny because Orthodox Churches use the Septuagint, and never actually used those other texts. EOs or OOs. Only some Syrian Orthodox Churches are claiming that the Aramaic is superior. Copts, Armenians, Ethiopians, Georgians, Russians and Greeks don't.


I said that I would like help debating these people on whether or not the "extra" books the Orthodox church uses are scripture or not.  I don't recall any of the members of the apologetics group saying anything about the Septuagint vs. the Aramaic/Hebrew texts.
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« Reply #60 on: September 05, 2013, 06:04:59 PM »

Quote
Philo was born and bred in Alexandria. Josephus says he wrote the Jewish Wars in Aramaic as pro-Roman propaganda for his fellow countrymen and then got help to translate it into Greek.
That doesn't have anything to do with his testimony, people said St. Paul was a heretic. What does baseless accusation and name-calling accomplish. Let's look at the historical record honestly.

You don't understand. It's Josephus' own testimony that he wrote in Aramaic (patrike glossa IIRC) and needed help to translate his writings into Greek.

Those were the Dead Sea Scrolls that did contain Aramaic Targums. They also contained Septuagint texts. But these are not the Aramaic Targums I am referring to. And I think you know that. The Targums outside of the DDS are 5th century. The minority fragments of the Aramaic Qumran Scrolls are indeed authoritative. But the 5th century Targums are not the same as the Qumran manuscripts.

Fragments of Aramaic targums were discovered at Qumran, among the "Dead Sea Scrolls". Other fragments were found at the Genizah of Cairo. I am not confusing them with the complete surviving targums of the Pentateuch like Onqelos, Jonathan or the Yerushalmi.   

Quote
5th century AD is the Talmud. There's plenty of Aramaic targums at Qumran long before that.
No, the Talmud is as old as the Masoretic.

Did I say otherwise?

So, St. John may not be the author of St. John, but he would be the "co-author" because he is the one who is telling the scribe, who is the author, what to write.

Ok, it's just more complicated than that. "St. John" or "the beloved disciple" is someone we know very little about. He may or may not be the son of Zebedee or John the Presbyter who wrote Revelation.


When we say that "Christ used the Septuagint" we are not saying (I hope!) that Christ needed to speak Greek. Rather, he used a text (in Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic or whatever; all of them were present in 1st century Palestine as evidenced by the Dead Sea Scrolls) that contained readings that appear closer to those we have in the Septuagint in Greek today.

Now that's just plain confusing. In order to have used the Septuagint, He would have needed to read Greek. If he quoted the OT in Aramaic, as is more natural and sensible to assume, and the Aramaic targums happen to resemble the LXX, that still doesn't mean he used the Septuagint.
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« Reply #61 on: September 05, 2013, 06:08:25 PM »

I'm not sure what you guys are debating about, but I don't think it's what I asked for.  If you don't want to help me, just say so and I'll do it by myself.  Keep in mind, though, that these guys outnumber me and know a lot more about this than I do (even though I think they're ultimately wrong).

To be honest, I had a hard time following the flow of the first posts  Undecided  If it helps some of my thoughts on the general topic can be found here:

Patristic Quotes of Deuterocanonical Texts (especially reply #30 for a sort of summation)
Question Concerning EO Canon of Scripture (especially reply #3 for what various writers have said)

Also see here (though that'd prbobaly be way too much to sift through, I admit!)

Thanks.  The copying, pasting, and name-removing process made it a bit hard to follow, I know, but It's possible!
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« Reply #62 on: September 05, 2013, 06:22:28 PM »

Quote

You don't understand. It's Josephus' own testimony that he wrote in Aramaic (patrike glossa IIRC) and needed help to translate his writings into Greek.

Indeed, but that has nothing to do with my point. Josephus still spoke Greek and he still talks about his high opinion of the LXX.


Quote
Now that's just plain confusing. In order to have used the Septuagint, He would have needed to read Greek. If he quoted the OT in Aramaic, as is more natural and sensible to assume, and the Aramaic targums happen to resemble the LXX, that still doesn't mean he used the Septuagint.

So why the disagreement? If the Aramaic Targums of the type found at Qumran are the type of text that the Lord used and those texts happen to match the Septuagint that the early Church adopted, why is there a disagreement?
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« Reply #63 on: September 05, 2013, 06:24:59 PM »

Josephus didn’t think the Apocrypha was divine:

“For we have not an innumerable multitude of books among us, disagreeing from and contradicting one another, [as the Greeks have,] but only twenty-two books, which contain the records of all the past times; which are justly believed to be divine”

Josephus

There were also many in the early church that denied the Apocrypha. Here are just a few quotes:

“But for greater exactness I add this also, writing of necessity; that there are other books besides these not indeed included in the Canon, but appointed by the Fathers to be read by those who newly join us, and who wish for instruction in the word of godliness. The Wisdom of Solomon, and the Wisdom of Sirach, and Esther, and Judith, and Tobit, and that which is called the Teaching of the Apostles, and the Shepherd…”

St. Athanasius – Letter 39

“Accordingly when I went east and came to the place where these things were preached and done, I learned accurately the books of the Old Testament” (excludes Apocrypha)

Melito of Sardis – AD 170

“As, then, the Church reads Judith, Tobit, and the books of Maccabees, but does not admit them among the canonical Scriptures, so let it also read these two volumes (Wisdom of Solomon and Eccesiasticus) for the edification of the people, not to give authority to doctrines of the Church.

St Jerome (Ibid., Volume VI, Jerome, Prefaces to Jerome's Works, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Songs; Daniel, pp. 492-493)

I’m not saying these quotes prove the Apocrypha is not inspired; only that it’s been an ongoing debate in Christianity.
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« Reply #64 on: September 05, 2013, 06:25:13 PM »

So why the disagreement? If the Aramaic Targums of the type found at Qumran are the type of text that the Lord used and those texts happen to match the Septuagint that the early Church adopted, why is there a disagreement?

The disagreement was over which language He used, not over which text type.
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« Reply #65 on: September 05, 2013, 06:32:44 PM »

Quote
I'm not sure what you guys are debating about, but I don't think it's what I asked for.  If you don't want to help me, just say so and I'll do it by myself.  Keep in mind, though, that these guys outnumber me and know a lot more about this than I do (even though I think they're ultimately wrong).

We gave you answers, unless you need something more specific.

We are debating about the Septuagint vs. the Aramaic/Hebrew texts. Which is funny because Orthodox Churches use the Septuagint, and never actually used those other texts. EOs or OOs. Only some Syrian Orthodox Churches are claiming that the Aramaic is superior. Copts, Armenians, Ethiopians, Georgians, Russians and Greeks don't.


I said that I would like help debating these people on whether or not the "extra" books the Orthodox church uses are scripture or not.  I don't recall any of the members of the apologetics group saying anything about the Septuagint vs. the Aramaic/Hebrew texts.

Josephus didn’t think the Apocrypha was divine:

“For we have not an innumerable multitude of books among us, disagreeing from and contradicting one another, [as the Greeks have,] but only twenty-two books, which contain the records of all the past times; which are justly believed to be divine”

Josephus

There were also many in the early church that denied the Apocrypha. Here are just a few quotes:

“But for greater exactness I add this also, writing of necessity; that there are other books besides these not indeed included in the Canon, but appointed by the Fathers to be read by those who newly join us, and who wish for instruction in the word of godliness. The Wisdom of Solomon, and the Wisdom of Sirach, and Esther, and Judith, and Tobit, and that which is called the Teaching of the Apostles, and the Shepherd…”

St. Athanasius – Letter 39

“Accordingly when I went east and came to the place where these things were preached and done, I learned accurately the books of the Old Testament” (excludes Apocrypha)

Melito of Sardis – AD 170

“As, then, the Church reads Judith, Tobit, and the books of Maccabees, but does not admit them among the canonical Scriptures, so let it also read these two volumes (Wisdom of Solomon and Eccesiasticus) for the edification of the people, not to give authority to doctrines of the Church.

St Jerome (Ibid., Volume VI, Jerome, Prefaces to Jerome's Works, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Songs; Daniel, pp. 492-493)

I’m not saying these quotes prove the Apocrypha is not inspired; only that it’s been an ongoing debate in Christianity.


You guys are making this difficult. Lutheran boy, the Deuterocanon was considered inspired by St. Athanasius and all of the Church. Only Jerome said otherwise. Josephus is a Jew, and in any case he supported the Septuagint against the Masoretic which happens to contain the Deuterocanon.

Quote
All of the Fathers used the Deuterocanon. Only St. Jerome and maybe a few others disagreed. I think Jerome is the only one though.

Other points:

6. The King James Authorized Version contained the Deuterocanon before Calvinists removed it.

7. The Church Fathers believed it was Divinely Inspired. (e.g., St. Augustine)

8. The extent Jewish authorities of the first century believed it was Divinely Inspired (c.f., Philo of Alexandria, Josephus)

Quote
If the Septuagint was good enough for Jesus, it is good enough for the rest of us.

What about the King James version? I thought Christ used that one.  Shocked

Edit: St. Philaret of Moscow also saw the Deuterocanon as "Apocrypha."

Quote
Quote
I've tried using the things that you have said, as one can see in the OP, but they still have objections.  M.G. wants me to do this so that these apologists can disprove to me that the deuterocanon is scripture, and therefore prove to me that the Orthodox Church is not the true church (or at least not as correct as it says it is).

Well, that would mean the Church has always been wrong, (see above) which would mean Christ has always been wrong.

See? Protestants were atheists and they didn't even know it.

"The gates of hell will never prevail against it." (Matthew 16:18)

Tell them if the Jews of the time used the Septuagint, and said it was Divinely Inspired, Christ himself used the Septuagint, the Apostles used the Septuagint and the early Church until St. Jerome thought it was Scripture, and Divinely Inspired, and continued using it regardless, until the Protestant Reformation (and actually a little after that, the Deuterocanon wasn't removed by the Protestants until the Dutch Protestant publication by Calvinists) they have to admit that Martin Luther and the Reformers know more than CHRIST HIMSELF and the Apostles and the Early Church.

Boy, to know more than God... Atheism with a Bible is Protestantism.

So why the disagreement? If the Aramaic Targums of the type found at Qumran are the type of text that the Lord used and those texts happen to match the Septuagint that the early Church adopted, why is there a disagreement?

The disagreement was over which language He used, not over which text type.

Well, Jesus didn't speak Greek as a first language I can tell you that. Jesus clearly spoke Aramaic. Whether he read Aramaic is different, the scholarly language was Greek so he may have read Greek but I don't care.
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« Reply #66 on: September 05, 2013, 06:36:18 PM »

All of the Fathers used the Deuterocanon. Only St. Jerome and maybe a few others disagreed. I think Jerome is the only one though.

St. Gregory the Theologian, St. John of Damascus and many Church Fathers did not include the deuterocanonicals in their Bible canon. Many Church Fathers. Some others quoted them, sometimes as Scripture, even when they didn't consider them canonical, including St. Athanasius (he excluded them from his canon). See my links above for some references.
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« Reply #67 on: September 05, 2013, 06:40:53 PM »

Pilate may have known Aramaic, but Greek was the administrative language, so trials and such would have been conducted in Greek.  I don't think the Roman government at the time was overly concerned at the possibility that some Jews may not received a fully fair trial because Greek wasn't there first language.

Sure, but the Gospels don't present the Roman trial of Jesus as a typical legal proceeding.  Especially in the Gospel of St John, but also in the Synoptics, Pilate is depicted as reluctant to condemn Jesus.  It's not unreasonable, given this rather positive depiction of what historians contend was a rather brutal fellow, that Pilate would have wanted to speak to Jesus in his own language in order to get as much of the story as straight as possible.  

Quote
He was stated to be uneducated in regards to theology, meaning that He was not a disciple of any Rabbi and formally trained in Scripture, but that doesn't necessarily mean He didn't know how to read and write.  If anything, we should be more amazed that He could read Hebrew more than anything else.

I didn't say he didn't know how to read and write, I just suggested the possibility that he did not know how to do so with Greek, even if he could speak Greek.  Do we know for certain that Christ spoke Greek?  We know that he spoke Aramaic.  We also know that when Greeks desired to see Jesus, they went to Philip, who consulted Andrew, and both went to Jesus.  Is it a coincidence that these were the two disciples with Greek names?  If everyone including Jesus knew Greek, why did the Greeks seek out a disciple with a Greek name rather than approach Jesus personally like any number of others, Jew and Gentile?  I'm not saying it's impossible that he knew Greek to some degree, I just don't know how certain of this we can be.    

Should we be amazed that Jesus could speak Hebrew?  I don't know.  When Pilate ordered a sign to be placed above Christ crucified, the Gospels record the three languages as Hebrew, Greek, and Latin.  We can understand a Greek inscription if Greek was a lingua franca, and we can understand Latin as a nod to the imperial tongue.  But why Hebrew if it was just a liturgical language unknown to the target audience?  
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« Reply #68 on: September 05, 2013, 06:40:56 PM »

I said that I would like help debating these people on whether or not the "extra" books the Orthodox church uses are scripture or not.  I don't recall any of the members of the apologetics group saying anything about the Septuagint vs. the Aramaic/Hebrew texts.

That is part of why one person/group argues one way and another person/group argues the other way though. Lots of the arguments about the extra books revolve around which you accept, the Hebrew or the Greek Septuagint. It doesn't have to be that way, but that's often how the debates/discussions are framed.
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« Reply #69 on: September 05, 2013, 06:43:09 PM »

"Deuterocanonical" is RC terminology. In Orthodoxy, we call these books anaginoskomena, which means "read" or "good/safe to read". That's quite neutral. In the ancient Church, they were used for the instruction of catechumens (especially the Wisdom literature, together with Genesis and Proverbs, to teach morals). Hence the (Western) designation of Sirach as Liber Ecclesiasticus ("Church book"). As LBK pointed out, excerpts from them are still read at Vespers (during Lent, the vesperal readings/paroimiai are vestiges of ancient catechesis).   
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« Reply #70 on: September 05, 2013, 06:45:40 PM »

"Deuterocanonical" is RC terminology. In Orthodoxy, we call these books anaginoskomena, which means "read" or "good/safe to read". That's quite neutral. In the ancient Church, they were used for the instruction of catechumens (especially the Wisdom literature, together with Genesis and Proverbs, to teach morals). Hence the (Western) designation of Sirach as Liber Ecclesiasticus ("Church book"). As LBK pointed out, excerpts from them are read at Vespers (during Lent, the vesperal readings/paroimiai are vestiges of ancient catechesis).  

Yeah but anaginoskomena is hard to remember. So I say Deuterocanon. I can remember Antilegomenon but not anaginoskomena.
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« Reply #71 on: September 05, 2013, 06:46:07 PM »

Deuterocanonical may indeed be a more recent word, but the concept was not absent in the early Church, which I think is not incompatible with "readable books." Though "apocryphal" was used as early as St. Jerome to speak of them, showing that a range of terms were used.
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« Reply #72 on: September 05, 2013, 06:53:29 PM »

Only some Syrian Orthodox Churches are claiming that the Aramaic is superior. Copts, Armenians, Ethiopians, Georgians, Russians and Greeks don't.

Like who?  I don't know any Syrian Orthodox Church that claims the Aramaic is superior to the Greek.  Some individuals may believe that, but I don't believe that's the position of the Church as a whole.  The Church uses the Peshitto as its official text for liturgy and for teaching because it is in the Church's language and was used by the Syriac Fathers in their writings and in the formulation of liturgical texts.  In that sense, it is "superior".  This is not the same as "Aramaic primacy", however.  
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« Reply #73 on: September 05, 2013, 07:01:50 PM »

Only some Syrian Orthodox Churches are claiming that the Aramaic is superior. Copts, Armenians, Ethiopians, Georgians, Russians and Greeks don't.

Like who?  I don't know any Syrian Orthodox Church that claims the Aramaic is superior to the Greek.  Some individuals may believe that, but I don't believe that's the position of the Church as a whole.  The Church uses the Peshitto as its official text for liturgy and for teaching because it is in the Church's language and was used by the Syriac Fathers in their writings and in the formulation of liturgical texts.  In that sense, it is "superior".  This is not the same as "Aramaic primacy", however.  

Didn't Philoxenus of Mabbug translate the Septuagint all over again? And I believe there was yet another Syriac Orthodox attempt to translate the Scriptures from the Greek.

I think the Peshitta primacy theory originated with the Assyrians.
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« Reply #74 on: September 05, 2013, 07:09:41 PM »

Didn't Philoxenus of Mabbug translate the Septuagint all over again? And I believe there was yet another Syriac Orthodox attempt to translate the Scriptures from the Greek.

I think the Peshitta primacy theory originated with the Assyrians.

I think you're right about the Assyrians.  Unfortunately, I can't answer your question about St Philoxenos.  Even my knowledge has limits.  Tongue
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« Reply #75 on: September 05, 2013, 07:14:55 PM »

All of the Fathers used the Deuterocanon. Only St. Jerome and maybe a few others disagreed. I think Jerome is the only one though.

St. Gregory the Theologian, St. John of Damascus and many Church Fathers did not include the deuterocanonicals in their Bible canon. Many Church Fathers. Some others quoted them, sometimes as Scripture, even when they didn't consider them canonical, including St. Athanasius (he excluded them from his canon). See my links above for some references.

This post should have had the quote by xOrthodox4Christx taken out of it, and be seen as a general response. I actually meant to quote something else, but too late now (can't edit it...)
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« Reply #76 on: September 05, 2013, 07:28:37 PM »

I'm not sure what you guys are debating about, but I don't think it's what I asked for.  If you don't want to help me, just say so and I'll do it by myself.  Keep in mind, though, that these guys outnumber me and know a lot more about this than I do (even though I think they're ultimately wrong).
I don't mind giving you my thoughts.  The reason for the seemingly abstract argument between the Masoretic text and the Septuagint is because the Septuagint contains the deuterocanonical books while they are left out of Masoretic canons.  Depending on which one you find authoritative will largely depend on whether you believe they should be included.
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« Reply #77 on: September 06, 2013, 02:42:55 AM »

I said that I would like help debating these people on whether or not the "extra" books the Orthodox church uses are scripture or not.  I don't recall any of the members of the apologetics group saying anything about the Septuagint vs. the Aramaic/Hebrew texts.

Didyma,

There are a lot of posts floating around here. While I'd like you to read my post, you'd be better off reading Romaios'. They are accurate and informative.

Let's examine the following questions that could be asked about a deuterocanonical book:

"Is this text Scripture?"
"Is this text inspired?"
"Is this text part of the real bible?"

These three questions, and those like it, have one thing in common: They are all stupid. There is no getting around this fact.

They are stupid questions, and the people asking them are doing a stupid thing by asking them. The people themselves may not be stupid, but the questions are stupid. The questions are stupid because they come from a mindset seeking after something stupid; that is, a mindset seeking an infallible source material from which to draw from in such a manner as to remove the need to think.

In real life, Jews and Christians did not treat holy texts that way. They still don't. The very search for a small, select group of "inspired" writings is inherently dualistic, pessimistic, anti-human, anti-God and demoralizing, not to mention reductionist and simplistic. As such, it is un-Christian. Romaios said our view best here:

"In Orthodoxy, we call these books anaginoskomena, which means 'read' or 'good/safe to read'. That's quite neutral. In the ancient Church, they were used for the instruction of catechumens (especially the Wisdom literature, together with Genesis and Proverbs, to teach morals)."

Here's a better question to ask, and one that may lead you away from the "is this Scripture?" sort of question:

Why do Orthodox Christians treat a book of the Gospels differently than a Book of the Epistles, Acts, or the Old Testament?

All of the Fathers used the Deuterocanon. Only St. Jerome and maybe a few others disagreed. I think Jerome is the only one though.

St. Gregory the Theologian, St. John of Damascus and many Church Fathers did not include the deuterocanonicals in their Bible canon. Many Church Fathers. Some others quoted them, sometimes as Scripture, even when they didn't consider them canonical, including St. Athanasius (he excluded them from his canon). See my links above for some references.
If I recall, Trullo affirms local councils with differing anagignoskomena lists.

That should tell us something.
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« Reply #78 on: September 06, 2013, 09:20:59 AM »

If I recall, Trullo affirms local councils with differing anagignoskomena lists.

That should tell us something.

Your whole post was pretty much BS, but at least you got this one point right.
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« Reply #79 on: September 06, 2013, 09:26:21 AM »

Your whole post was pretty much BS, but at least you got this one point right.

Don't be bashful now!

Seriously, there's at least one other valid point in that post, why do you think this is the only one?
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« Reply #80 on: September 06, 2013, 09:59:28 AM »

Didn't Philoxenus of Mabbug translate the Septuagint all over again? And I believe there was yet another Syriac Orthodox attempt to translate the Scriptures from the Greek.

I think the Peshitta primacy theory originated with the Assyrians.

I think you're right about the Assyrians.  Unfortunately, I can't answer your question about St Philoxenos.  Even my knowledge has limits.  Tongue
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« Reply #81 on: September 06, 2013, 10:56:42 AM »

All of the Fathers used the Deuterocanon. Only St. Jerome and maybe a few others disagreed. I think Jerome is the only one though.

St. Gregory the Theologian, St. John of Damascus and many Church Fathers did not include the deuterocanonicals in their Bible canon. Many Church Fathers. Some others quoted them, sometimes as Scripture, even when they didn't consider them canonical, including St. Athanasius (he excluded them from his canon). See my links above for some references.

Even St Jerome considered them inspired scriptures, and all his changing views on them came from his hebrew love. But in the early Church, not part of the canon does not equal "not inspired" and Church Fathers considered them inspired. I will quote the Fathers you mentioned.

St John of Damascus wrote:

And hence it is that in the Old Testament the use of images was not common. But after God (Jn 1:14, Tit. 3:4) in His bowels of pity became in truth man for our salvation, not as He was seen by Abraham in the semblance of a man, nor as He was seen by the prophets, but in being truly man, and "after He lived upon the earth and dwelt among men, (Bar. 3:37) An Exposition of the Orthodox Faith, Book IV, Chapter XVI.

He considers Baruch and Old Testament book.

Some, again, have a prophetic sense, and of these some are in the future tense: for instance, He shall come openly, (Psalm 50:3) and this from Zechariah, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, (Zech. 9:9) and this from Micah, (Mic. 1:3) Behold, the Lord cometh out of His place and will came down and tread upon the high places of the earth. But others, though future, are put in the past tense, as, for instance, This is our God: "Therefore He was seen upon the earth and dwell among men," (Baruch 3:37) and The Lord created me in the beginning of His ways for His works (Prov. 8:22), and Wherefore God, thy God, anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows, and such like. (Psalm 14:7) St. John of Damascus, An Exposition of the Orthodox Faith, Book IV, Chapter XVII

He places Baruch on same level as Zechariah or Micah.

The divine Scripture likewise saith that 'the souls of the just are in God's hand’ [Wisdom 3:1] and death cannot lay hold of them." John Damascene, Orthodox Faith, 4:15

And he does the same with maccabees etc.

For St St. Athanasius is the same thing.

"[T]he sacred writers to whom the Son has revealed Him, have given us a certain image from things visible, saying, 'Who is the brightness of His glory, and the Expression of His Person;' [Heb 1:3] and again, 'For with Thee is the well of life, and in Thy light shall we see lights;' [Ps 36:9] and when the Word chides Israel, He says, 'Thou hast forsaken the Fountain of wisdom;' [Baruch 3:12] and this Fountain it is which says, 'They have forsaken Me the Fountain of living waters' [Jer 2:13]" [3] Athanasius the Great: Defense of the Nicene Faith

"And where the sacred writers say, Who exists before the ages,' and 'By whom He made the ages,’ [Heb 1:2] they thereby as clearly preach the eternal and everlasting being of the Son, even while they are designating God Himself. Thus, if Isaiah says, 'The Everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth;’ [Is 40:28] and Susanna said, 'O Everlasting God;' [Daniel 13:42-Susanna] and Baruch wrote, 'I will cry unto the Everlasting in my days,' and shortly after, 'My hope is in the Everlasting, that He will save you, and joy is come unto me from the Holy One;' [Baruch 4:20,22]" Athanasius the Great: Discourses Against the Arians

Since, however, after all his severe sufferings, after his retirement into Gaul, after his sojourn in a foreign and far distant country in the place of his own, after his narrow escape from death through their calumnies, but thanks to the clemency of the Emperor,- -distress which would have satisfied even the most cruel enemy,-- they are still insensible to shame, are again acting insolently against the Church and Athanasius; and from indignation at his deliverance venture on still more atrocious schemes against him, and are ready with an accusation, fearless of the words in holy Scripture, 'A false witness shall not be unpunished;’ [Proverbs 19:5] and, 'The mouth that belieth slayeth the soul;' (Wisdom 1:11) we therefore are unable longer to hold our peace, being amazed at their wickedness and at the insatiable love of contention displayed in their intrigues. [Athanasius the Great: Defence Against the Arians

etc etc etc

St Jerome also.

Does not the SCRIPTURE say: 'Burden not thyself above thy power' [SIRACH 13:2] Jerome, To Eustochium, Epistle 108

still our merriment must not forget the limit set by Scripture, and we must not stray too far from the boundary of our wrestling-ground. Your presents, indeed, remind me of the sacred volume, for in it Ezekiel decks Jerusalem with bracelets, (Eze. 16:11) Baruch receives letters from Jeremiah,(Jer. 36, Bar. 6) and the Holy Spirit descends in the form of a dove at the baptism of Christ.(Mt. 3:16) Jerome, To Eustochium, Epistle 31:2

A. DO YOU EXPECT ME TO EXPLAIN THE PURPOSES AND PLANS OF GOD? THE BOOK OF WISDOM GIVES AN ANSWER TO YOUR FOOLISH QUESTION: [Sir 3:21] "LOOK NOT INTO THINGS ABOVE THEE, AND SEARCH NOT THINGS TOO MIGHTY FOR THEE." AND ELSEWHERE,[5] "Make not thyself overwise, and argue not more than is fitting." And in the same place, "In wisdom and simplicity of heart seek God." You will perhaps deny the authority of this book;" "Jerome, "Against the Pelagians

Etc etc etc

The issue of the Fathers and deuterocanonicals has been dealt with as far as protestants are concerned.

Good page for the subject: http://matt1618.freeyellow.com/deuterocanonicalpage.html
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« Reply #82 on: September 06, 2013, 11:11:31 AM »

"Deuterocanonical" is RC terminology. In Orthodoxy, we call these books anaginoskomena

The Slavs, Arabs and Romanians included?
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« Reply #83 on: September 06, 2013, 11:45:02 AM »

"Deuterocanonical" is RC terminology. In Orthodoxy, we call these books anaginoskomena

The Slavs, Arabs and Romanians included?

Romanians barely refer to them. If they do, they are content to give the title of each book.

This is biblicist jargon ordinary laymen can do without, really.   
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« Reply #84 on: September 06, 2013, 11:51:59 AM »

"Deuterocanonical" is RC terminology. In Orthodoxy, we call these books anaginoskomena

The Slavs, Arabs and Romanians included?
yes, when it comes to jargon, which is the only level that this comes up.

Since in an Orthodox Bible, the books are not separated from the "Protocanonical"/"Canonical", the issue doesn't come up.
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« Reply #85 on: September 06, 2013, 08:32:49 PM »

If I recall, Trullo affirms local councils with differing anagignoskomena lists.

That should tell us something.

Your whole post was pretty much BS, but at least you got this one point right.
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« Reply #86 on: September 07, 2013, 04:52:24 PM »

Well, the Protestant apologists seem to have lost interest in the discussion, but I followed one of the links that they recommended to me: http://michaeljkruger.com/the-complete-series-ten-basic-facts-about-the-nt-canon-that-every-christian-should-memorize/

The most relevant articles seem to be #2 and #7.  The "apocrypha" that the author is apparently talking about is apocryphal writings that the Orthodox don't accept as far as I know, like The Gospel of Philip.  Is this true?
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« Reply #87 on: September 07, 2013, 06:01:21 PM »

The most relevant articles seem to be #2 and #7.  The "apocrypha" that the author is apparently talking about is apocryphal writings that the Orthodox don't accept as far as I know, like The Gospel of Philip.  Is this true?

We do not accept any of the NT apocryphal writings (for lack of a better term, though they were never accepted as part of the NT) such as the "lost gospels".

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#4: “Some NT Writers Quote Other NT Writers as Scripture”

They do not quote each other, but there is a reference to Paul's writings found in one of Peter's epistles.

Quote
#5: “The Four Gospels are Well Established by the End of the Second Century”

#6: “At the End of the Second Century, the Muratorian Fragment lists 22 of our 27 NT books”

#7: “Early Christians Often Used Non-Canonical Writings”

There were a number of locally used NT canons, none of which included any of the "lost gospels", some of which included writings that were removed from the canon of the NT but still found to be useful (Clement's epistle to the Corinthians for example), some of which excluded books now included in the canon, and the large majority of which excluded Revelation.


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#8: “The NT Canon Was Not Decided at Nicea—Nor Any Other Church Council”

The only mention of scripture at the Nicea was in the Creed where it says that Christ was raised from the dead "according to the scriptures". The only mention in any councils were where a council accepted the various local canons of scripture being accepted and at the council of Jerusalem where the Church defended the rightful place of in scripture of books that Protestants denied.

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#9: “Christians Did Disagree about the Canonicity of Some NT Books”

This was very early on and the problem was eventually solved by accepting books included in a number of differing canons.

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#10 “Early Christians Believed that Canonical Books were Self-Authenticating.”

They were authenticated by their source (the Apostles) and who they were maintained by (the Church), as well as by the witness to truth that they bear.

With the differences in canon of scripture along with varying manuscript traditions of individual texts, churches recognized each other by and were more concerned with the truth that they preached more than "what bible they used".
« Last Edit: September 07, 2013, 06:02:17 PM by Melodist » Logged

And FWIW, these are our Fathers too, you know.

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« Reply #88 on: September 08, 2013, 02:03:22 AM »

Shepard of Hermas, or give me death!

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« Reply #89 on: September 11, 2013, 02:39:04 AM »

N/A
« Last Edit: September 11, 2013, 02:39:43 AM by Nicene » Logged

Thank you.
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