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Author Topic: How canonical are the Deuterocanonical texts? Please critique this discussion.  (Read 2248 times) Average Rating: 0
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Didyma
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« on: September 05, 2013, 10:13:28 AM »

I'm not sure whether this is the right forum, as even though I'm discussing this with Protestants on a Christian apologetics group, I'm only playing "Orthodox's Advocate."  Please give suggestions on how to proceed and/or more information on why the deuterocanon is canonical.  I'm not that good at debating!  TT__TT

_______________________________________

Well, Mackenzie wants me to ask you guys what you know about how canonical the deuterocanonical texts ("Apocrypha") are.  First, I had better tell you what I know.

1. The deuterocanonical texts were part of the Jewish canon in the Apostolic times.  It was included in the Greek translation of the Old Testament called the Septuagint (LXX), the primary Old Testament during Jesus’ day, the Apostolic era, and the early Church. Accordingly, many of the quotations of the Old Testament in the New Testament are from the deuterocanons.
   For example:  In Matthew 22:23-28, the Sadducees tried to mock the resurrection    of the body and the larger Old Testament that other Jews recognized.    (Remember, the Sadducees only recognized the five books of Moses). So they used the story in Tobit about a woman being married seven times to mock the    truthfulness of the resurrection and the larger Old Testament, which included the Apocrypha.

   This is how Jesus answered the Sadducees: “You are wrong, because you know neither the Scriptures nor the power of God.”

   
   2 Corinthians 9:7: Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

   Sirach 35:11: With every gift show a cheerful face and dedicate your tithe with gladness.

   Proverbs 22:8a (Septuagint only): God blesses a cheerful man and a giver …
2. The Apocrypha was removed from the King James Bible in 1885 by the Scottish Presbyterians as well as the English and American descendants of the puritans, perhaps because it would be cheaper to print.  Martin Luther also included the deuterocanonical texts in his Bible (admittedly, as a text secondary to the Protestant Bible, but sacred text nonetheless)
3. The Dead Sea Scrolls include several of these books (full and partial, IIRC) in Hebrew/Aramaic. These scrolls pre-date the Septuagint, and often favor the Septuagint's rendering of the text, rather than the later Masoretic (Protestant)Text.
4. The later reformers looked to see what the Jews were doing with the Old Testament Scriptures in their time and began utilizing the Masoretic Text, assuming the Jews maintained the earlier translations and canon. This is even though, as has already been pointed out, the earlier Reformers still utilized the Apocrypha in some way.
5. The early church fathers, those who were taught by the Apostles themselves and/or lived when the Apostles lived, referenced the deuterocanons in their writings.  For example, quotations from Wisdom, for example, occur in 1 Clement and Barnabas. Polycarp cites Tobit, and the Didache cites Ecclesiasticus. Irenaeus refers to Wisdom, the History of Susannah, Bel and the Dragon [i.e., the deuterocanonical portions of Daniel], and Baruch. The use made of the Apocrypha by Tertullian, Hippolytus, Cyprian and Clement of Alexandria is extremely frequent.  
6. The canon that was implicitly affirmed at the Seventh Ecumenical Council, II Nicaea (787), included the ceuterocanons.  This affirmed the results of the 419 Council of Carthage, and did not just represent the views of only one person, but what was accepted by the Church leaders of whole regions.

Shoot.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2013, 10:24:18 AM by Didyma » Logged

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Didyma
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« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2013, 10:20:38 AM »

Here are the replies, and my replies to those replies.

__________________________________________________
M.G : I know a lot of members have perspectives on the Apocrypha. G.A.P.? T.M.? Hmm... I probably shouldn't tag too many people.
September 3 at 9:53pm · Like










T.M. : As Dr. Laura used to say, "What is your question for me?"
September 3 at 10:09pm · Like · 4










M.G. : I believe [Didyma] wants to know arguments for and against believing in the Apocrypha.
September 3 at 10:15pm · Like










M.G. :  Or, how canonical they are, as she put it.
September 3 at 10:49pm · Like










G.A.P. : Patristic citations from various books is fairly haphazard. The reality is that there wasn't a settled view on what was and was not canonical. If you look at Athanasius' list of books that make up the Bible, for example, it (from memory) matches the Protestant Canon.
September 3 at 11:12pm · Edited · Like · 3










G.A.P. :  But the question / issue is very broad and probably can't be adequately addressed here.
September 3 at 11:13pm · Like










C.L. : Well, sometimes the OT apocrypha are interesting, in terms of history, e.g., the Maccabees.

However, they also contain funky theology (you quoted Sirach 35:11, but if you look at Sirach 42:14: κρείσσων πονηρία ἀνδρὸς ἢ ἀγαθοποιὸς γυνή καὶ γυνὴ καταισχ...See More

The Complete Series: Ten Basic Facts About the NT Canon that Every Christian Should Memorize 
michaeljkruger.comFor the last month or so, I have been working through a new series on the NT can...See More







Yesterday at 12:01am · Like · 3










C.L. : Usually an outline for canon goes like this:

I. OT Canon
a. Tanakh (Torah=the Law or the Pentateuch, Navi'im=the Prophets, Ketavim=the Writings)
b. Jewish canon closed with Malachi (prophecy from Amos 8:11-12)...See More
Yesterday at 1:00am · Edited · Like · 1










D.M. : C.L., I see one key problem in that the Council of Jamnia as is commonly referred to never happened. I was looking into writing a full treatment of it to get my thoughts down and discovered through the scholarly articles that there is a huge hole there where the scholarly consensus seems to be that the CoJ was a figment of someone's imagination.
Yesterday at 12:48am via mobile · Like










C.L. : Hm. Interesting! I'll have to note that.
Yesterday at 12:48am · Like










B.C. : Simply quoting from or referring to a book does not mean that the author considered it to be Scripture. Paul occasionally quotes pagan works, but I don't think anyone would argue that he considered them to be Scripture.
Yesterday at 1:51am via mobile · Like · 1










D.M. : It all depends on how the source is quoted. The deuterocanonicals were certainly part of the Jewish milieu which Christianity emerged from and sincere believers held these books as sacred Scripture.
Yesterday at 2:28am via mobile · Like · 1










M.G. : Also, under your first point [Didyma], just because Jesus said the Sadducees were wrong about the Scripture doesn't mean that he was affirming the Apocrypha. They rejected texts that all Christians consider canonical, too, not just the Apocrypha.
22 hours ago · Like










B.C. : The hypothetical story of seven wives may have been popularized in Tobit, but it was simply a logical possibility of the the law of Moses which the Sadducees did hold to--a possibility which led them to think that a resurrection would cause problems. Jesus shows them that their own limited canon of the Pentateuch implies the resurrection and that their complicated scenario is a product of their misunderstanding that the resurrection life will merely be a continuation of this present life. So this conversation in no way reflects the idea that Tobit was considered Scripture.

[Didyma] : G.A.P., I know the canon wasn't fully agreed on during some of the time periods mentioned, but the point is that many of those church fathers considered the texts canon. If you were referring to haphazard quoting, these were only meant to be examples.
9 minutes ago · Like










C.L. : I don't know if quoting say from an Epicurean or Stoic, or even an apocryphal book, counts more along the lines of "sermon illustration" or that the text quoted is canonical.
7 minutes ago · Like










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« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2013, 10:28:46 AM »

Several of the deuterocanonical books are used in Orthodox Vespers readings, and elements of them have also found their way into church hymns. The incorporation of a work into the liturgical fabric of the Church means it is accepted by the whole Church.
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TheTrisagion
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« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2013, 10:34:08 AM »

I had a difficult time following all that.  In response to the title, I would say that they are between 75-100% canonical.  Wink

On a more serious note, they are canonical because they are in the Septuagint. I'm not sure why Protestants feel the need to follow the later Masoretic text which didn't come along until 700-1000 years later. If the Septuagint was good enough for Jesus, it is good enough for the rest of us.
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« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2013, 11:20:12 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.

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."
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« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2013, 11:31:14 AM »

Jesus was using KJV 1611 version when reading Isaiah in the synagogue. I'm sure that was cross-referenced in my Strong's concordance somewhere.
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« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2013, 11:36:49 AM »

Different Orthodox churches use a few different books, and have different opinions as to the degree of their authority in comparison with other scriptures. This is not seen as a pressing issue because our entire religion is not based solely on the Holy Scriptures as the definitive and exclusive authority source as it is in much of Protestantism.
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« Reply #7 on: September 05, 2013, 11:40:04 AM »

St. Jerome's view

Another thread on the original language of the deuterocanonicals.

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« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2013, 11:43:41 AM »





M.G. : Also, under your first point [Didyma], just because Jesus said the Sadducees were wrong about the Scripture doesn't mean that he was affirming the Apocrypha. They rejected texts that all Christians consider canonical, too, not just the Apocrypha.
22 hours ago ·

Ironically, the author of the Wisdom of Sirach may well have been a Sadducee.
« Last Edit: September 05, 2013, 11:44:09 AM by Romaios » Logged
Didyma
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« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2013, 11:46:51 AM »

Update...

________________

C.L. :  Let's expand Sirach 42:9-14...

9 A daughter is a secret anxiety to her father, and worry over her robs him of sleep; when she is young, for fear she may not marry, or if married, for fear she may be disliked; 10 while a virgin, for fear she may be seduced and become pregnant in her father's house; or having a husband, for fear she may go astray, or, though married, for fear she may be barren. 11 Keep strict watch over a headstrong daughter, or she may make you a laughingstock to your enemies, a byword in the city and the assembly of1 the people, and put you to shame in public gatherings.2 See that there is no lattice in her room, no spot that overlooks the approaches to the house.3 12 Do not let her parade her beauty before any man, or spend her time among married women;1 13 for from garments comes the moth, and from a woman comes woman's wickedness. 14 Better is the wickedness of a man than a woman who does good; it is woman who brings shame and disgrace. (Sir 42:1 NRSV)

Really? Context helps here? I still see funky theology.
about an hour ago · Like · 1

B.C. :  When Jesus says they do not understand the Scripture, he is referring to Exodus (which he quotes) and not to Tobit. There is no reason to think he has Tobit in mind. It is not even clear that the Sadducees had Tobit in mind: the situation is a natural outworking of Torah and 7 is a commonly used figurative number.
about an hour ago via mobile · Like · 1
 ______________________________________

I'm looking for help with specific responses to their comments, please.  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).  Let's try to give them a run for their money, please!
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« Reply #10 on: September 05, 2013, 11:50:03 AM »

Well, you are debating Protestants who probably think that these books are mumbojumbo anyway.  Good luck!
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« Reply #11 on: September 05, 2013, 11:53:08 AM »

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.
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« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2013, 11:59:21 AM »

Christ himself used the Septuagint.

Really?  Shocked
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« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2013, 12:03:23 PM »

Christ himself used the Septuagint.

Really?  Shocked

I know, I just learned that from TheTrisagion. I honestly thought he used the 1611 King James Authorized Divinely Inspired Word of God Edition.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2013, 12:09:38 PM »

Boy, to know more than God... Atheism with a Bible is Protestantism.
pretty much. And yet they can't tell us where they got their Bible from (they do, but with no facts to back them up).
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« Reply #15 on: September 05, 2013, 12:34:32 PM »

Boy, to know more than God... Atheism with a Bible is Protestantism.
pretty much. And yet they can't tell us where they got their Bible from (they do, but with no facts to back them up).

It came from Jesus.  He wrote the whole thing. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #16 on: September 05, 2013, 12:50:33 PM »

Christ himself used the Septuagint.

Really?  Shocked
Is this a suprise?  What else would he have used?  Huh
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« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2013, 01:09:49 PM »

Christ himself used the Septuagint.

Really?  Shocked
Is this a suprise?  What else would he have used?  Huh

The Hebrew Tanakh and Aramaic targums. The latter happen to agree with the NT quotations of the OT wherever these differ from the Masoretic text as well as the Septuagint.
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« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2013, 01:14:43 PM »

The Hebrew Tanakh and Aramaic targums. The latter happen to agree with the NT quotations of the OT wherever these differ from the Masoretic text as well as the Septuagint.

Hurrah for Aramaic! 
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« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2013, 01:21:45 PM »

Christ himself used the Septuagint.

Really?  Shocked
Is this a suprise?  What else would he have used?  Huh

The Hebrew Tanakh and Aramaic targums. The latter happen to agree with the NT quotations of the OT wherever these differ from the Masoretic text as well as the Septuagint.
While he obviously would have read from the Hebrew scrolls in the temple and synoguages, His quotations from Scripture in the New Testament were from the Greek.

http://catholicdefense.blogspot.com/2010/06/did-jesus-use-greek-version-of-bible.html
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« Reply #20 on: September 05, 2013, 01:25:24 PM »

The Hebrew Tanakh and Aramaic targums. The latter happen to agree with the NT quotations of the OT wherever these differ from the Masoretic text as well as the Septuagint.

Hurrah for Aramaic! 

Lamsa was right! Tongue

Also, is the guy in your avatar wearing a klobuk?
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« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2013, 01:34:51 PM »

Christ himself used the Septuagint.

Really?  Shocked
Is this a suprise?  What else would he have used?  Huh

The Hebrew Tanakh and Aramaic targums. The latter happen to agree with the NT quotations of the OT wherever these differ from the Masoretic text as well as the Septuagint.
While he obviously would have read from the Hebrew scrolls in the temple and synoguages, His quotations from Scripture in the New Testament were from the Greek.

http://catholicdefense.blogspot.com/2010/06/did-jesus-use-greek-version-of-bible.html

Lol. That article assumes that Hebrews actually quotes Jesus quoting Ps. 39/40:6 in Greek! It also seems to ignore that it was a homily addressed to Hellenistic Jews of the diaspora (possibly Alexandria) and therefore quotes the version of the Psalter its target readers were familiar with (the Septuagint). St. Luke (the author of Acts) would have used the LXX for the same reason.

As far as the famous Emmanuel prophecy of Isaiah 7:14 is concerned, there are Targums which interpret Heb. almah to mean "virgin". 
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« Reply #22 on: September 05, 2013, 01:36:48 PM »

Lamsa was right! Tongue

Also, is the guy in your avatar wearing a klobuk?

Looks like it, but no.  That, my friend, is Thulsa Doom.  He knows the Riddle of Steel.  Smiley 

BTW, Lamsa sucks. 
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« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2013, 01:39:38 PM »

The Hebrew Tanakh and Aramaic targums. The latter happen to agree with the NT quotations of the OT wherever these differ from the Masoretic text as well as the Septuagint.

Hurrah for Aramaic! 

Lamsa was right! Tongue

If he's one of the crew who advocate Peshitta primacy, he's dead wrong.
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« Reply #24 on: September 05, 2013, 01:43:46 PM »

Christ himself used the Septuagint.

Really?  Shocked
Is this a suprise?  What else would he have used?  Huh

The Hebrew Tanakh and Aramaic targums. The latter happen to agree with the NT quotations of the OT wherever these differ from the Masoretic text as well as the Septuagint.
While he obviously would have read from the Hebrew scrolls in the temple and synoguages, His quotations from Scripture in the New Testament were from the Greek.

http://catholicdefense.blogspot.com/2010/06/did-jesus-use-greek-version-of-bible.html

Lol. That article assumes that Hebrews actually quotes Jesus quoting Ps. 39/40:6 in Greek! It also seems to ignore that it was a homily addressed to Hellenistic Jews of the diaspora (possibly Alexandria) and therefore quotes the version of the Psalter its target readers were familiar with (the Septuagint). St. Luke (the author of Acts) would have used the LXX for the same reason.

As far as the famous Emmanuel prophecy of Isaiah 7:14 is concerned, there are Targums which interpret Heb. almah to mean "virgin". 
So you believe that Jesus used the Hebrew and Aramaic only, the Apostles decided to ignore that to be more palatable to the gentiles and use the Greek, resulting in the addition of a bunch of books as Scripture that Jesus did not approve of. Also, the book of Hebrews makes a false claim that Jesus said something that He really did not, most Biblical scholars have been mistaken in their examination of Scripture, and the Orthodox Church has been using the wrong canon of Scripture this whole time.

Makes sense to me. Maybe I should have stated protestant.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #25 on: September 05, 2013, 01:51:46 PM »


Looks like it, but no.  That, my friend, is Thulsa Doom.  He knows the Riddle of Steel.  Smiley 


Lol, I've only seen the first five minutes of Conan. I usually give up right around when he starts pushing the mill thingy.

BTW, Lamsa sucks. 
If he's one of the crew who advocate Peshitta primacy, he's dead wrong.

Not to worry gentlemen, I came to that conclusion as soon as I started reading his "translation" of the Peshitta, hence the Tongue.
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« Reply #26 on: September 05, 2013, 01:54:03 PM »


So you believe that Jesus used the Hebrew and Aramaic only, the Apostles decided to ignore that to be more palatable to the gentiles and use the Greek, resulting in the addition of a bunch of books as Scripture that Jesus did not approve of. Also, the book of Hebrews makes a false claim that Jesus said something that He really did not, most Biblical scholars have been mistaken in their examination of Scripture, and the Orthodox Church has been using the wrong canon of Scripture this whole time.

Makes sense to me. Maybe I should have stated protestant.  Roll Eyes

Or you know, they went to look up the reference to make sure they didn't flub it and used the (existing) Greek text instead of making their own translation.
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« Reply #27 on: September 05, 2013, 02:03:54 PM »

So you believe that Jesus used the Hebrew and Aramaic only,

Yes.

the Apostles decided to ignore that to be more palatable to the gentiles and use the Greek,

With the exception of St. Paul, the rest of the Apostles probably didn't speak much Greek - let alone write it. Most NT books were written by the next generation (the Apostles' disciples).

resulting in the addition of a bunch of books as Scripture that Jesus did not approve of.

Well, it's highly unlikely that He would have been familiar with any of them. But the 4th chapter of the Wisdom of Solomon accurately and prophetically describes what happened to Him.

Also, the book of Hebrews makes a false claim that Jesus said something that He really did not

The first Christians compiled a list of testimonia (Messianic proof texts) from the Psalms and Prophets. This verse was surely included.
   
most Biblical scholars have been mistaken in their examination of Scripture

Most scholars would not agree that Hebrews 10 contains a historical quotation. Nevertheless, Our Lord probably uttered those words in prayer at one time or another of His life, as He did with all Psalms.

and the Orthodox Church has been using the wrong canon of Scripture this whole time.

The Church decided for herself, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, which was the right canon.

Maybe I should have stated protestant.  Roll Eyes

Not my advice.
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« Reply #28 on: September 05, 2013, 02:34:09 PM »

Lol, I've only seen the first five minutes of Conan. I usually give up right around when he starts pushing the mill thingy.

Blasphemy...you should be forced to watch it upon the Tree of Woe. 
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« Reply #29 on: September 05, 2013, 02:42:29 PM »

What evidence is there that Jesus used Aramaic and Hebrew texts instead of Greek?  

All Orthodox writings that I have read have consistently held that from the very infancy of the Church, the Church has always used the Septuagint.  The whole reason the Church has consistently held to the Septuagint is BECAUSE of it's tradition and use since the beginning.  You seem to now say that the Church can at any point decide that perhaps another version is better.  After all, if it happened once, why can't it happen again?

Further, Matthew was written in Greek and he was an apostle, Mark was written in Greek and he was one of the 70, John was written in Greek and he was an apostle, so of your theory, really only Luke (whose book was in Greek) was a disciple of the apostles. Greek was a common tongue of the time period, it would be like saying the Dutch probably don't know English.  I suppose there are some, but most have at least a passing knowledge of it. (and the ones I have met have known English better than most Americans)
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« Reply #30 on: September 05, 2013, 02:45:40 PM »

I was talking to Jesus today.  He speaks Spanish.
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« Reply #31 on: September 05, 2013, 02:49:58 PM »

Jesus seems to read Aramaic and/or Hebrew in the Gospels when he was in the synagogue, and certain things that he said were in Aramaic, which would make sense if the Gospel writers were writing in Greek but retaining his original words, but wouldn't make sense if Jesus was speaking Greek and the Gospel writers just translated these few random words for no particular reason. The early Christians, including the New Testament authors, did use the Septuagints (plural) primarily, but not exclusively as some would argue. Also, while very few early Fathers favored the Hebrew or took the time to even learn it (St. Jerome, Origen), the relationship between the Hebrew version and the early Church is not so adversarial as some would make it out to be. For example, many Fathers, when outlining their canon of the Old Testament, not only went along with the Hebrew version, but also gave as a reason for this the number of letters in the Hebrew Alphabet.  And when I say "Fathers" here I am not talking about St. Noone of Podunk, I'm talking about some of the most prominent theologians of the early Church. It's actually a very interesting field for digging up treasure, I think. Just don't expect anyone to give you a treasure map. If you're lucky someone will point you in the right general direction.  Wink
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« Reply #32 on: September 05, 2013, 02:57:25 PM »

What evidence is there that Jesus used Aramaic and Hebrew texts instead of Greek? 

Like Romaios said, direct quotes from the Gospels lining up better with the Targum than with the Septuagint.

All Orthodox writings that I have read have consistently held that from the very infancy of the Church, the Church has always used the Septuagint.  The whole reason the Church has consistently held to the Septuagint is BECAUSE of it's tradition and use since the beginning.  You seem to now say that the Church can at any point decide that perhaps another version is better.  After all, if it happened once, why can't it happen again?

Just because the Septuagint has been used from the beginning doesn't mean there weren't other versions being used concurrently. E.G. The Peshitta, which is based on the Targum has been in pretty much constant use by Aramaic speaking Christians since the time of Christ. The only reason the Septuagint "won" was because the majority of the Christians in the East spoke Greek and therefore, used the Greek Bible.
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« Reply #33 on: September 05, 2013, 03:00:19 PM »

So you believe that Jesus used the Hebrew and Aramaic only...

Why is this so unbelievable?  The Gospels bear witness to the life of Christ (though written decades after his resurrection).  Even they allege that he was not formally educated, making a reading knowledge of Greek unlikely.  Why do we presume that he would've read and preached from a Greek Bible?  Because that's part of the OSB marketing strategy or something?  Tongue

Quote
...the Apostles decided to ignore that to be more palatable to the gentiles and use the Greek, resulting in the addition of a bunch of books as Scripture that Jesus did not approve of.

Where did you get this idea?  

Quote
Also, the book of Hebrews makes a false claim that Jesus said something that He really did not, most Biblical scholars have been mistaken in their examination of Scripture, and the Orthodox Church has been using the wrong canon of Scripture this whole time.

Again, where did you get this?  

It's simply not the case that the Bible of the Orthodox Church is, and only is, the LXX.  Before the various schisms, the Church in the West used the Latin, which is not always the same as the LXX, and the Syriac-speaking Church used the Peshitto, which also differs from the LXX.  The LXX is the official Bible of the Greek-speaking Church (and thus the EO as we currently have it), but even in the undivided Church it wasn't the one and only text, despite polemics and EO Bible marketing gimmicks.    
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« Reply #34 on: September 05, 2013, 03:01:58 PM »

Christ himself used the Septuagint.

Really?  Shocked
Is this a suprise?  What else would he have used?  Huh

The Hebrew Tanakh and Aramaic targums. The latter happen to agree with the NT quotations of the OT wherever these differ from the Masoretic text as well as the Septuagint.


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

Quote
If he's one of the crew who advocate Peshitta primacy, he's dead wrong.
My take on Aramaic primacy is this: the majority of the New Testament was written in Greek. The Acts was written by a Hellenist, St. Luke as was the Gospel of Luke. The Pauline and Catholic letters were written in Greek as well as the Book of Revelation.

I think it is possible some of the other gospels could of been written in Aramaic/Hebrew, notably St. Matthew's and St. John's.

I doubt that St. Mark's was.

Point being, the New Testament is largely a Hellenic book. Not Aramaic.

Quote
So you believe that Jesus used the Hebrew and Aramaic only, the Apostles decided to ignore that to be more palatable to the gentiles and use the Greek
I think Jesus used Hebrew and Aramaic, it was certainly possible from what we know about the Dead Sea Scrolls. However, it wouldn't have been the same extant Aramaic/Hebrew manuscripts we have today.

The extant Aramaic dates from 5th century AD (around the same age as the Latin Vulgate) and the Hebrew from the 10th century (as old as the Great Schism, even older than the Qur'an).

Quote
With the exception of St. Paul, the rest of the Apostles probably didn't speak much Greek - let alone write it. Most NT books were written by the next generation (the Apostles' disciples).
The first point is possible, but I think it isn't likely. Most Jews knew Greek, it was the Lingua Franca. Philo of Alexandria, and Josephus knew Greek. They were 1st century Jews too. The Dead Sea Scrolls also have Greek manuscripts among them.

It's always possible that the Apostles spoke Aramaic to the scribe, who translated and transcribed what the Holy Apostle wanted to be written. Bart Ehrman says as much, even though he is a wee bit critical of Christianity.

But by the "next generation"? Not so much.
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« Reply #35 on: September 05, 2013, 03:04:44 PM »

What evidence is there that Jesus used Aramaic and Hebrew texts instead of Greek?

He "was sent to the lost sheep of Israel". When Philip brought some Greeks (Hellenistic Jews?) to meet Him, He knew His public ministry was over and the hour of His passion had come.  

Greek was never used in the synagogues of Palestine. No Jews, except perhaps the offspring of the priestly aristocracy in Jerusalem would have received a Greek education. Merchants could probably speak it. Galilean peasants certainly didn't.  

All Orthodox writings that I have read have consistently held that from the very infancy of the Church, the Church has always used the Septuagint.  The whole reason the Church has consistently held to the Septuagint is BECAUSE of it's tradition and use since the beginning.  You seem to now say that the Church can at any point decide that perhaps another version is better.

The Septuagint was certainly the best available option for most of the inhabitants of the Roman Empire who could understand neither Hebrew or Aramaic.

Further, Matthew was written in Greek and he was an apostle, Mark was written in Greek and he was one of the 70, John was written in Greek and he was an apostle, so of your theory, really only Luke (whose book was in Greek) was a disciple of the apostles.

Ancient authorities speak of a Hebrew or Aramaic original of Matthew. All Gospels betray an Aramaic substratum in the sayings of Our Lord. Some of His words are quoted in the original language (Effatha/Talita qumi/Eli, eli lama sabachtani). The early Christian greeting was Marana tha. As to the traditional attribution of authorship, I'd rather not get into that - the Gospels started being attributed to various Apostles only when the disputes with various heretics over their canonical status began.  

Greek was a common tongue of the time period, it would be like saying the Dutch probably don't know English.  I suppose there are some, but most have at least a passing knowledge of it. (and the ones I have met have known English better than most Americans)

You are comparing 21st century levels of literacy in a civilized Western country to those of rural Palestine in the 1st century. The English proficiency of the inhabitants of a random Indian village or slum would produce a more relevant analogy.  
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« Reply #36 on: September 05, 2013, 03:13:55 PM »

So you believe that Jesus used the Hebrew and Aramaic only...

Why is this so unbelievable?  The Gospels bear witness to the life of Christ (though written decades after his resurrection).  Even they allege that he was not formally educated, making a reading knowledge of Greek unlikely.  Why do we presume that he would've read and preached from a Greek Bible?  Because that's part of the OSB marketing strategy or something?  Tongue
lol, He is apparently the Unoriginate Logos, but can't read Greek?

I never said He didn't use the Hebrew and Aramaic, but I think it is rather silly to say that Jesus was too uneducated to be able to use the Septuagint.

Quote
Quote
...the Apostles decided to ignore that to be more palatable to the gentiles and use the Greek, resulting in the addition of a bunch of books as Scripture that Jesus did not approve of.

Where did you get this idea?  
Well, if Christ only approved of the Hebrew texts that did not include the deuterocanonical books, then the additional books of the Septuagint would likely be books that Christ did not believe belonged in the canon of the OT.

Quote
Quote
Also, the book of Hebrews makes a false claim that Jesus said something that He really did not, most Biblical scholars have been mistaken in their examination of Scripture, and the Orthodox Church has been using the wrong canon of Scripture this whole time.

Again, where did you get this?  
See above
Quote
It's simply not the case that the Bible of the Orthodox Church is, and only is, the LXX.  Before the various schisms, the Church in the West used the Latin, which is not always the same as the LXX, and the Syriac-speaking Church used the Peshitto, which also differs from the LXX.  The LXX is the official Bible of the Greek-speaking Church (and thus the EO as we currently have it), but even in the undivided Church it wasn't the one and only text, despite polemics and EO Bible marketing gimmicks.    
I am not arguing for the exclusive use of the LXX, I'm saying that even if you are not Orthodox, you should be willing to consider it's authenticity and it's canon because it has been used by the Church since the beginning and by Christ.  If you are arguing that Christ either ignored or rejected the Septuagint, you set Him against the Orthodox Church which is an untenable position.
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« Reply #37 on: September 05, 2013, 03:26:20 PM »

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

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.

My take on Aramaic primacy is this: the majority of the New Testament was written in Greek. The Acts was written by a Hellenist, St. Luke as was the Gospel of Luke. The Pauline and Catholic letters were written in Greek as well as the Book of Revelation.(...) Point being, the New Testament is largely a Hellenic book. Not Aramaic.

I agree. The Gospels were not written in Aramaic, but the words of Our Lord are translated from it. So they all share an Aramaic substratum. 

The extant Aramaic dates from 5th century AD (around the same age as the Latin Vulgate) and the Hebrew from the 10th century (as old as the Great Schism, even older than the Qur'an).

5th century AD is the Talmud. There's plenty of Aramaic targums at Qumran long before that.

The first point is possible, but I think it isn't likely. Most Jews knew Greek, it was the Lingua Franca. Philo of Alexandria, and Josephus knew Greek. They were 1st century Jews too. The Dead Sea Scrolls also have Greek manuscripts among them.

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.

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...
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« Reply #38 on: September 05, 2013, 03:28:43 PM »

So you believe that Jesus used the Hebrew and Aramaic only...

Why is this so unbelievable?  The Gospels bear witness to the life of Christ (though written decades after his resurrection).  Even they allege that he was not formally educated, making a reading knowledge of Greek unlikely.  Why do we presume that he would've read and preached from a Greek Bible?  Because that's part of the OSB marketing strategy or something?  Tongue
lol, He is apparently the Unoriginate Logos, but can't read Greek?

I never said He didn't use the Hebrew and Aramaic, but I think it is rather silly to say that Jesus was too uneducated to be able to use the Septuagint.

Quote
Quote
...the Apostles decided to ignore that to be more palatable to the gentiles and use the Greek, resulting in the addition of a bunch of books as Scripture that Jesus did not approve of.

Where did you get this idea?  
Well, if Christ only approved of the Hebrew texts that did not include the deuterocanonical books, then the additional books of the Septuagint would likely be books that Christ did not believe belonged in the canon of the OT.

Quote
Quote
Also, the book of Hebrews makes a false claim that Jesus said something that He really did not, most Biblical scholars have been mistaken in their examination of Scripture, and the Orthodox Church has been using the wrong canon of Scripture this whole time.

Again, where did you get this?  
See above
Quote
It's simply not the case that the Bible of the Orthodox Church is, and only is, the LXX.  Before the various schisms, the Church in the West used the Latin, which is not always the same as the LXX, and the Syriac-speaking Church used the Peshitto, which also differs from the LXX.  The LXX is the official Bible of the Greek-speaking Church (and thus the EO as we currently have it), but even in the undivided Church it wasn't the one and only text, despite polemics and EO Bible marketing gimmicks.    
I am not arguing for the exclusive use of the LXX, I'm saying that even if you are not Orthodox, you should be willing to consider it's authenticity and it's canon because it has been used by the Church since the beginning and by Christ.  If you are arguing that Christ either ignored or rejected the Septuagint, you set Him against the Orthodox Church which is an untenable position.

Huh  I don't see how Christ possibly not using the Septuagint amounts to a rejection of it's authenticity or canonicity.
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« Reply #39 on: September 05, 2013, 03:32:30 PM »

lol, He is apparently the Unoriginate Logos, but can't read Greek?

I never said He didn't use the Hebrew and Aramaic, but I think it is rather silly to say that Jesus was too uneducated to be able to use the Septuagint.

If you want to introduce Christology into this, we're going to go far afield.

The Gospels are clear that Jesus grew in wisdom.  They quote him speaking in Aramaic and quote others speaking to him in Aramaic, and they have to provide translations for the non-Aramaic audience.  They present Jesus' opponents and supporters as questioning where he could've gotten the learning he has, being as uneducated as he was.  Even if, in the course of his work as a carpenter, he picked up spoken Greek, it's not likely that he learned how to read.  But we know he read Hebrew/Aramaic because he read it in the synagogues.  Everything we know points to his illiteracy in Greek.  As the Logos of God, sure he knew Greek, he also knew Basque.  But his humanity is true humanity, and so there are things which he did not know...he did not know Basque, and most likely did not know how to read Greek, if he knew how to speak it.    

Quote
Well, if Christ only approved of the Hebrew texts that did not include the deuterocanonical books, then the additional books of the Septuagint would likely be books that Christ did not believe belonged in the canon of the OT.

But where are you getting this idea?  

Quote
I am not arguing for the exclusive use of the LXX, I'm saying that even if you are not Orthodox, you should be willing to consider it's authenticity and it's canon because it has been used by the Church since the beginning and by Christ.  If you are arguing that Christ either ignored or rejected the Septuagint, you set Him against the Orthodox Church which is an untenable position.

I just don't see where you are concluding that Christ "ignored or rejected" the LXX from the assertion that he likely did not read it.  I'm not rejecting or ignoring the Domostroi if I don't read it--I simply don't know Russian and am unable to use it.  
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« Reply #40 on: September 05, 2013, 03:47:10 PM »

Here is my logical thought process.

1. The Septuagint was a popular text, therefore Christ must have at least been aware of it's existence.
2. Jesus had at least a working knowledge of Greek as he was able to communicate with Roman soldiers and Pilate who likely did not know Aramaic and would comunicate in Greek, further Jesus grew up in Galilee and spent much time in Caesarea which was a Roman autonomous city, the primary language there would have been Greek. The majority of the inhabitants were non-Jewish. Jesus also lived in Egypt which communications there would have been almost exclusively in Greek.
3. The Septuagint and the Hebrew text contain different translations and different books.
4. If Christ chose to use the Hebrew and excluded the Septuagint, it is an indication that he felt that the Septuagint was unfaithful to the original.
5. If Christ used both, it is an indication that He felt the Septuagint was an acceptable rendering of the text and that the books it contained can be trusted for use.



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« Reply #41 on: September 05, 2013, 03:56:47 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.
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« Reply #42 on: September 05, 2013, 03:59:53 PM »

Here is my logical thought process.

1. The Septuagint was a popular text, therefore Christ must have at least been aware of it's existence.

OK

Quote
2. Jesus had at least a working knowledge of Greek as he was able to communicate with Roman soldiers and Pilate who likely did not know Aramaic and would comunicate in Greek, further Jesus grew up in Galilee and spent much time in Caesarea which was a Roman autonomous city, the primary language there would have been Greek. The majority of the inhabitants were non-Jewish. Jesus also lived in Egypt which communications there would have been almost exclusively in Greek.

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.    
  
Quote
3. The Septuagint and the Hebrew text contain different translations and different books.

Which LXX and which Hebrew text?  

Quote
4. If Christ chose to use the Hebrew and excluded the Septuagint, it is an indication that he felt that the Septuagint was unfaithful to the original.

Non sequitur.  

Quote
5. If Christ used both, it is an indication that He felt the Septuagint was an acceptable rendering of the text and that the books it contained can be trusted for use.

OK.  But the same would hold for the Hebrew.  
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« Reply #43 on: September 05, 2013, 04:02:20 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.   
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« Reply #44 on: September 05, 2013, 04:06:51 PM »

Here is my logical thought process.

1. The Septuagint was a popular text, therefore Christ must have at least been aware of it's existence.

Popular text: consider the levels of literacy in a foreign language of 1st century Palestine.

2. Jesus had at least a working knowledge of Greek as he was able to communicate with Roman soldiers and Pilate who likely did not know Aramaic and would comunicate in Greek, further Jesus grew up in Galilee and spent much time in Caesarea which was a Roman autonomous city, the primary language there would have been Greek. The majority of the inhabitants were non-Jewish. Jesus also lived in Egypt which communications there would have been almost exclusively in Greek.

How long did He "live" as a refugee in Egypt?

How "much time" did He spend in Caesarea? If you mean His interaction with the Syro-Phoenician woman, she would have been perfectly capable of speaking Aramaic (maybe a slightly different dialect).

As far as the Roman administration is concerned, do you think it would have been in the interest of Rome to send people there who ignored the local language and customs? Also, Our Lord didn't speak many words to Pilate. The Roman centurion built a synagogue, so he was definitely interested in/sympathetic to the indigenous culture, if not a proselyte. Roman soldiers could have been recruited from Aramaic speaking populations.

3. The Septuagint and the Hebrew text contain different translations and different books.

95% of the books are the same. The Hebrew is not a translation, but the original.
 
4. If Christ chose to use the Hebrew and excluded the Septuagint, it is an indication that he felt that the Septuagint was unfaithful to the original.
5. If Christ used both, it is an indication that He felt the Septuagint was an acceptable rendering of the text and that the books it contained can be trusted for use.

There was no definitive canon for either the Tanakh or the Septuagint in His time. Canon for Him = "the Law and the Prophets". The Tanakh = Tora/Law + Nevi'im/Prophets + Ketuvim/Writings or Hagiographa (Psalms, Proverbs, Qohelet, Song of Songs, Esther, Ruth, etc.). The latter were the latest additions to the canon, chronologically. The Hebrew canon was established after the fall of the Temple and the Jewish wars, in the days of Rabbi Akiva.    
« Last Edit: September 05, 2013, 04:32:02 PM by Romaios » Logged
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