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

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

27
votes
5answers
8k views

Why is the Septuagint (LXX) significant?

What is the LXX and why is it so noteworthy that there is a Greek translation of the OT? Wouldn't it be better to directly reference manuscripts in the original languages?
21
votes
3answers
1k views

Bart D. Ehrman - respected critic? [closed]

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. ...
20
votes
4answers
3k views

Should John 1:18 read “the only begotten God”?

I was reading my New King James version of the Bible and found a footnote for this verse: John 1:18 (NKJV) No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son,[a] who is in the bosom of the ...
18
votes
5answers
4k views

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?
17
votes
2answers
366 views

How does a Bible translator know if it is a poem?

Let's take 1 Tim 3:16 as an example among many others, where Paul wrote or quoted (ESV): Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the ...
16
votes
3answers
4k views

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 ...
16
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the proper translation of Hosea 11:12?

I have been researching Hosea 11:12 and have come to realize that it is translated differently in many differing translations of the Bible. It is sometimes translated that Judah walked (or ruled) with ...
15
votes
3answers
4k views

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. ...
15
votes
3answers
622 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 ...
13
votes
3answers
835 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 ...
12
votes
4answers
482 views

What factors bear on the authenticity of Matthew 23:14?

Modern translations of the New Testament omit some verses found in the King James Bible (missing verses). The reason for the differences is that modern translations use the Nestle-Aland edition of the ...
12
votes
3answers
384 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? ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

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 ...
12
votes
3answers
8k views

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 ...
12
votes
1answer
489 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 ...
11
votes
3answers
486 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?
11
votes
5answers
2k views

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 ...
11
votes
1answer
141 views

Are the three distinctive Hebrew terms, translated “breath of life,” suggesting there was a different mankind at creation than there was at the flood?

The same English phrase, "breath of life," is used to describe three distinct Hebrew phrases. "Neshamah chay" is in Genesis 2:7 (creation). "Ruwach chay" is in Genesis 6:17 (intention for death at ...
10
votes
2answers
4k views

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 ...
10
votes
3answers
718 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. ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

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 ...
10
votes
1answer
153 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 ...
10
votes
2answers
710 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 ...
10
votes
2answers
1k 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 ...
10
votes
1answer
362 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 ...
10
votes
2answers
372 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?) ...
10
votes
2answers
575 views

Why does the Peshitta use the word ‘baptism’ for ‘enlightened’ in Hebrews 6:4?

In Hebrews it talks about certain apostates that can’t be renewed to repentance because they have undergone certain things, which they have then rejected, signifying something terribly wrong and ...
9
votes
4answers
3k views

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 ...
9
votes
1answer
5k views

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 ...
9
votes
3answers
8k views

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 ...
9
votes
1answer
1k 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 ...
9
votes
4answers
3k views

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 ...
9
votes
5answers
1k views

Understanding Jesus' apparent lie in John 7:8

John 7:8: "...You go to the festival. I am not[a] going up to this festival, because my time has not yet fully come." The all important footnote: [a] John 7:8 Some manuscripts not yet It ...
9
votes
1answer
132 views

When was the Hebrew Bible's exact text/spelling synchronized globally?

The Hebrew Bible is essentially identical in all Jewish communities, despite significant differences in spellings and wordings from the Septuagint or texts in the Dead Sea Scrolls, or even from quoted ...
9
votes
1answer
359 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” ...
9
votes
1answer
136 views

Whose faith is the subject of Hebrews 11:11?

Πίστει καὶ αὐτὴ Σάρρα δύναμιν εἰς καταβολὴν σπέρματος ἔλαβεν καὶ παρὰ καιρὸν ἡλικίας, ἐπεὶ πιστὸν ἡγήσατο τὸν ἐπαγγειλάμενον (Hebrews 11:11, Westcott and Hort) The traditional translation of ...
9
votes
2answers
350 views

How can we understand differences between the NWT and Latin/Hebrew/Greek on Zechariah 12:10?

Is there any early manuscript that shows a word translatable as "the one" (3rd person) in Zechariah 12:10? When looking at Zechariah 12:10, this is how it reads in: New World Translation (NWT) ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

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 ...
8
votes
1answer
248 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 ...
8
votes
2answers
137 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
609 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 ...
8
votes
3answers
272 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 ...
8
votes
5answers
781 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
298 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
230 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
92 views

“Blessed be the glory of the LORD from its place”

Ezekiel 3:12-13a (BHS | ESV): וַתִּשָּׂאֵ֣נִי ר֔וּחַ וָאֶשְׁמַ֣ע אַחֲרַ֔י ק֖וֹל רַ֣עַשׁ גָּד֑וֹל בָּר֥וּךְ כְּבוֹד־יְהוָ֖ה מִמְּקוֹמֽוֹ׃ וְק֣וֹל ׀ כַּנְפֵ֣י הַחַיּ֗וֹת מַשִּׁיקוֹת֙ אִשָּׁ֣ה ...
7
votes
2answers
214 views

Isaiah 3:12: ‘…women rule over them.'

Isaiah 3:12a: My people — infants are their oppressors,      and women rule over them. (ESV) עַמִּי נֹגְשָׂיו מְעוֹלֵל וְנָשִׁים מָשְׁלוּ בוֹ (WLC) ...
7
votes
2answers
287 views

What are the translations of the Greek word μονογενής in Ancient Versions?Is it “only” or “only-begotten”?

What are the translations of the Greek word μονογενής in Ancient Versions? What are the rendering of μονογενής into Ancient Versions of the *NT passages? Hebrew Arabic: Ethiopic: Syriac ...
7
votes
3answers
1k 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 ...
7
votes
1answer
200 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 ...