The art/science of textual criticism attempts to reconstruct the oldest or original wording of a given text.

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Bart D. Ehrman - respected critic?

I found Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why troublesome to my understanding of the translation process of the bible. It has made me review my understanding of the bible. ...
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Omission of 'fasting' in Mark 9:29

I would like to know why some versions feel it apt to omit the word "fasting" from Mark 9:29. Is this because it was not concurrent with the correct translation/ meaning of this verse? For example. ...
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Is the ending of the Gospel of Mark (16:9-20) original?

Some scholars believe that the ending of Mark is unoriginal due to it appearing to have a different style and the fact that it's missing from some key manuscripts. At the same time, several early ...
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5answers
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Is John 7:53-8:11 original to John's gospel?

I've read several recent commentaries on John 8 and all agree that the story of the woman caught in adultery almost certainly wasn't there in the original manuscript. Is it original?
14
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367 views

Did Jesus read minds or perceive them?

In this passage, most English translations say "knowing their thoughts". In the footnote it says "perceiving" their thoughts. I feel like this is a pretty monumental difference as perceiving thoughts ...
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473 views

Is there any reason to think that Mark 7:19 has a later addition?

This is Mark 7:19 from the NIV: For it doesn’t go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out of the body.” (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.) Every time I see a ...
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259 views

Matthew originally written in Hebrew?

I recently came across a post which suggested that Mathew was originally written in Hebrew. I had never heard this before... is this a significant scholarly position? If so, what evidence supports it? ...
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How do the traditions of the LXX and MT versions of Jeremiah relate?

Concerning Jeremiah: does the lengthier text tradition found in the MT represent an expansion of the tradition that backed the LXX? Or does the tradition behind the LXX represent an abridgment of the ...
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430 views

Based on recent manuscript discoveries, is the LXX more reliable than the MT?

Based on recent manuscript discoveries such as the Dead Sea Scrolls, is the text of the LXX more reliable than the MT?
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How authentic is Codex Sinaiticus?

From what I understand, these are the best codices available. Codex Sinaiticus Codex Vaticanus Codex Alexandrinus Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus. Codex Sinaiticus is considered the only complete New ...
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1answer
347 views

How should Psalm 22:16 read?

Psalm 22:16 seems textually quite difficult. The NET for example reads: Yes, wild dogs surround me – a gang of evil men crowd around me; like a lion they pin my hands and feet. Yet, they note that ...
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3answers
563 views

Who led the people of Israel out of Egypt in Jude 5?

Lest anyone think this is a "stump the chumps" question, I am specifically interested in support for a particular reading of this text. It is disputed which manuscript should be followed in Jude 5. ...
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Was Jesus angry and if so why in Mark 1:41?

Mark 1:41 NIV: Jesus was indignant.[a] He reached out his hand and touched the man. ‘I am willing,’ he said. ‘Be clean!’ [a] Many manuscripts Jesus was filled with compassion The ...
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1answer
85 views

How many days until Nineveh will be overthrown?

When Jonah declares the destruction of Nineveh to its inhabitants, his only words are (3:4b): עוֹד אַרְבָּעִ֣ים י֔וֹם וְנִֽינְוֵ֖ה נֶהְפָּֽכֶת׃ (BHS) Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be ...
9
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1answer
325 views

What role should textual (lower) criticism play in biblical hermeneutics (if any)?

A recent comment on another question demonstrated a common perspective, namely that textual criticism is usually a bad thing when interpreting scripture (some would even go so far as to say that it is ...
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Was the text of Matthew 28:19 changed?

Scholars such as F. C. Conybeare1 have claimed that the Trinitarian baptismal formula of Matthew 28:19 was not original to the text of Matthew. Matt 28:19 (NIV) 19 Therefore go and make ...
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4answers
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Did God say that Adam will die on the same day he ate the fruit?

but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” (Genesis 2:17, NKJV) but you must not eat from the tree of the ...
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Why is part of Luke 9:55-56 omitted in some Bible translations?

In the KJV we have But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them. And they went to ...
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1answer
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Why is 1 John 5:7-8, found in the KJV, kept in the NKJV when it is believed to be inauthentic?

1 John 5:7-8 King James Version (KJV) 7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 8 And there are three that ...
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2answers
489 views

Was nûn deleted from Psalm 145 in the Masoretic Text?

Psalm 145 is an acrostic of the Hebrew alphabet, except that in most of the MT manuscripts verse 13b is missing along with therefore the letter nûn. The ESV renders it like this: Your kingdom is an ...
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1answer
960 views

Coherence-Based Genealogical Method vs. Local Text-Types Theory

The NA28 text marks a departure from the traditional methodology of textual criticism. As described by Jeff Kloha in the Concordia Theology Journal, Previous generations learned to classify ...
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920 views

What is the argument against the authenticity of 1 John 5:7-8 in the KJV?

I was reading through Lee Strobel's The Case for the Real Jesus and came across a passage in the book that indicates the inauthenticity of 1 John 5:7-8 in the King James Version: 1 John 5:7-8 ...
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4answers
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What is the meaning of “calculate” in Revelation 13:18?

This is perhaps the most famous prophesy in popular culture: This calls for wisdom: let the one who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man, and his ...
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167 views

Could saying that Melchizedek was “without beginning of days or end of life” possibly be a textual error?

Few mysteries of the Bible have attracted more interest than the mystery of the identity of Melchizedek. He is mentioned in Genesis 14:14-20; Psalm 110:4; Hebrews 5:6, 10, 6:20, 7:1-17; but Hebrews ...
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298 views

Was the Leningrad Codex a direct descendant of the Aleppo Codex?

Here is what I think I know about these two codices (correct me if I'm wrong): both the Aleppo and Leningrad Codices were complete codices of the Hebrew Old Testament the Leningrad Codex was (is?) ...
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1answer
324 views

How are early Greek manuscripts that quote Jesus Christ properly understood?

When the words of Jesus Christ are evaluated from early Greek manuscripts shouldn’t translation difficulties between Hebrew and Greek be considered? For example, the word spirit in Hebrew is “ruwach” ...
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Is 1 Corinthians 14:33-35 an interpolation?

One of the answers to the question about what 1st Corinthians 14:34-35 means suggests that the passage is a later interpolation. From the quote by J.W. Wartick, included in the answer, there are ...
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2answers
105 views

What is the gender of the verb “to say” in Ecclesiastes 7:27?

In Ecclesiastes 7:27, there is a brief phrase, "says Qohelet" (ʾāmĕrâ qōhelet). In the rest of the book, it seems like masculine verbs are used with Qohelet, despite Qohelet itself having a feminine ...
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3answers
533 views

Does the “lost leaf” theory for Mark's abrupt ending fail if written on a scroll?

I really like this explanation of Mark's rather abrupt ending: There are three possible explanations for Mark ending at 16:8: (1) The author intentionally ended the Gospel here in an open-ended ...
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3answers
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On what basis do some modern Bible manuscripts omit Matt. 17:21?

According to Constantin Tischendorf's critical apparatus (p. 103, footnote for. v. 21) of Matt. 17:21, ϛ Ln Ti τοῦτο δὲ το γένος (aethppl et talis) οὐκ ἐκπορεύεται (אbG εκβαλλετ. , ti2 al15 ...
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1answer
254 views

What led to the division of Ezra-Nehemiah?

Modern consensus is that the books of Ezra and Nehemiah actually comprise a single work which was subsequently divided into two. How is it that scholars realized this was the same book (Does it have ...
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1answer
171 views

Is the source text of part of 1 Kings 19 potentially from a corrupted copy?

I noticed a similarity in two sets of passages from 1 Kings 19, and was wondering if either (1) there is any historical textual evidence that might point to dittography having occurred, and that a ...
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691 views

Why do different English translations differ on Matthew 24:36?

This question has been separated from this one at the request of Jon Ericson. (Thanks again for the edit.) When one looks at different translations of Matthew 24:36, one finds that the KJV mentions ...
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1answer
112 views

Was υἱοῦ θεοῦ a latter addition to Mark 1:1?

Dick Harfield mentions that the phrase "Son of God" (υἱοῦ θεοῦ) does not appear in Codex Sinaiticus (nor in Origen). Is it reasonable to assume on this basis that the phrases was a later addition to ...
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586 views

How reliable are the Dead Sea Scrolls as a base to compare against the Masoretic text and the LXX?

I often find people comparing other manuscripts (e.g., Masoretic text, LXX) against the Dead Sea Scrolls in order to determine their accuracy. For example, this thread asked how reliable the LXX was ...
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572 views

What is the original Number of the Beast?

Seems trivial question, because 666 had been widely accepted as the original. However if you investigate further different early versions of the Book of Revelation, they gave different Numbers of the ...
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1answer
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Is the 1500-Year-Old Gospel of Barnabas found in Turkey claiming Jesus was never crucified genuine or a hoax?

A Bible which is reported to be at least 1500 years old was discovered in Turkey and inside it there is a Gospel of Barnabas. The book was moved by Turkish government to one of their museums by ...
6
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2answers
391 views

Is verse 114 of the Gospel of Thomas a later addition?

Simon Peter said to him, "Let Mary leave us, for women are not worthy of life." Jesus said, "I myself shall lead her in order to make her male, so that she too may become a living spirit resembling ...
6
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1answer
238 views

How should Sirach 3:17 be translated?

Here are four alternate translations for Sirach (Ecclesiasticus / Wisdom of Joshua Ben Sira) 3:17 -- My son, perform your tasks in meekness; then you will be loved by those whom God accepts ...
6
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1answer
115 views

Can we determine the language(s) the author of Hebrews read from the list of Judges?

In Hebrews 11, at the end of the Hall of Faith, we get a short list: And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the ...
6
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1answer
177 views

Inconsistent translations of Revelation 13:10?

KJV has for Revelation 13:10 He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the ...
6
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1answer
114 views

Can the final compilation of the Psalms be dated?

It seems reasonable to conclude that the Psalms were written over time by various authors, but can one reasonably date the final compilation of the Psalms? Were they compiled during the exile? Shortly ...
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1answer
169 views

Romans 5:1 and peace with God

The UBS4 reading of Romans 5:1 is: Δικαιωθέντες οὖν ἐκ πίστεως εἰρήνην ἔχομεν πρὸς τὸν θεὸν διὰ τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ (emphasis added) At issue is a textual variation concerning the ...
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“His love never ceases” vs. “we are not consumed” in Lamentations 3:22

Lamentations 3:22a חַֽסְדֵ֤י יְהוָה֙ כִּ֣י לֹא־תָ֔מְנוּ The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases... (ESV) ESV footnote: Syriac, Targum; Hebrew Because of the steadfast love of the LORD, ...
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1answer
145 views

Nestle-Aland equvalent critical apparatus for early New Testament translations

As an amateur textual critic, I've become very interested in the early translations of the New Testament, and I found this page listing a number of critical editions of NT translations. At least in ...
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1answer
214 views

Do some of the manuscripts have a blank spot in Ephesians 1:1?

The NIV footnotes indicate that some early manuscripts do not have "in Ephesus" in then. The NET has extensive notes on this, but they only state the the earliest and most important MSS "omit" the ...
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1answer
96 views

1 Cor. 2:1 - μαρτύριον v. μυστήριον

Textus Receptus (Estienne, 1550): Κἀγὼ ἐλθὼν πρὸς ὑμᾶς ἀδελφοί ἦλθον οὐ καθ᾽ ὑπεροχὴν λόγου ἢ σοφίας καταγγέλλων ὑμῖν τὸ μαρτύριον τοῦ θεοῦ Nestle-Aland 28th ed.: Κἀγὼ ἐλθὼν πρὸς ὑμᾶς, ...
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215 views

Reconciling the Differences in Jesus' Citation of Deu. 6:5 according to the Synoptics

According to the Masoretic text of Deu. 6:5, it is written, וְאָהַבְתָּ אֵת יַהְוֶה אֱלֹהֶיךָ בְּכָל לְבָבְךָ וּבְכָל נַפְשְׁךָ וּבְכָל מְאֹדֶךָ which the Septuagint (according to Rahlf's ...
5
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1answer
89 views

What is a “reinked” manuscript?

So, I'm checking a variant in the CNTTS critical apparatus and look up some info on a couple manuscripts that support a reading. According to CNTTS the manuscript is "a reinked manuscript of the ...
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207 views

Is the statement about love and obedience in John 14:15 an imperative or an indicative?

In the 1984 NIV, Jesus says in John 14:15: If you love me, you will obey what I command. But in the 2011 revision, the same sentence is rendered: If you love me, keep my commands. This ...