The New King James Version uses the Tetragrammaton in the New Testament (written as +LORD [CAPS-smallcaps]) apparently it uses a Tetragrammaton source material, or it arbitrarily implies it while the KJV does not.

So, how does the Codex Sinaiticus refer to the Tetragrammaton within the Epistles of Paul? Specifically, an example is at Romans chapter 10 verse 13. [Paul is referencing Sacred Scripture]


For “whoever calls on the name of the +LORD shall be saved.”

+[Lord in [CAP-small-caps], indicating the Tetragrammaton was used as it's source]

[RSV] other translations treat our subject this way

For, “every one who calls upon the name of the ++Lord will be saved.”

++[Lord in [CAP-lowercase], indicating the Greek word "Kyrios" (meaning master or lord) is being used]

Roman's 10:13 quotes Joel 2:32, through Paul's letter

Here is Joel chapter 2 verse 32...


And it shall come to pass That whoever calls on the name of the +LORD Shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance, As the +LORD has said, Among the remnant whom the +LORD calls.


And it shall come to pass that all who call upon the name of the +LORD shall be delivered; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the +LORD has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the +LORD calls.


And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of Jehovah shall be delivered; for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those that escape, as Jehovah hath said, and among the remnant those whom Jehovah doth call.


Then whoever calls on the name of Yahweh will be saved. Those who escape will be on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem. Among the survivors will be those whom Yahweh calls, as Yahweh has promised.


But whosoever shall call on the Name of the Lord, shall be saved: for in mount Zion, and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance as the Lord hath said, and in the remnant, whom the Lord shall call.

So, the Question is how does the Codex Sinaiticus deal with the Tetragrammaton. Instead of trying to determine all cases, lets focus on Romans 10 verse 13. I suspect that it simply uses the Greek word "Kyrios" and in Greek letters. There was speculation that some early Greek Codex might have the Hebrew word which looks like the Greek Symbols Pi-Pi, and therefore it might possibly use two Greek Pi Pi letters, but not likely.

  • Could you specify the location of the reference? If you’ve read this Q&A, you're aware that the only NT use of the Tetragrammaton is (probably unintentional and) in Revelation. I'm not sure what you mean by "when Paul (or Christ?) refer to the personal name of LORD".
    – Susan
    Apr 26, 2018 at 7:27
  • Ok, I'm checking out your reference now. I just joined yesterday and had not read the FAQ. Also, I rephrased the question and added references to clarify.
    – user12711
    Apr 26, 2018 at 18:19
  • @Susan Alternatively, this question could be, "Why does NKJV use the Tetragrammaton (written as LORD [CAPS-smallcaps]) when the KJV did not. [if it's settled among scholars that Codex Sinaiticus does not use the Tetragrammaton] I invite an editor to rephrase this question in light of the reference you shared.
    – user12711
    Apr 26, 2018 at 19:40

2 Answers 2


OP asks several questions, which I will summarize and address.

How does Codex Sinaiticus handle the word translated "LORD/lord" in Romans 10:13?

We can answer this definitively due to the amazing technology of 2018 and the good will of the folks at the British Library and their collaborators.

enter image description here

The word κυριος ("lord") is in the red box. As in many early manuscripts, it is abbreviated using the first and last letter. Because it appears here in the genitive case, the full word would be κυριου; the abbreviation uses the first and last letters. It is written in majuscule script, like the rest of the manuscript, so ΚΥ. The line over the letters indicates that this is an abbreviation (due to the nomina sacra status).

Second, the title question, which is more broad:

Does the Codex Sinaiticus contain the Hebrew Tetragrammaton or Greek LORD (KURIOS)?

The Greek κυριος (kurios) is used consistently, abbreviated using the first and last letters in order to show the case. This can be seen at the Codex Sinaiticus website. This is almost a non-question for the NT, as there are no known manuscripts that transliterate or otherwise represent the Tetragrammaton in full form apart from this word, which is almost certainly original. The more interesting case is the LXX portion of Sinaiticus, since there are known LXX manuscripts containing representation of the Hebrew Tetragram. Dr. Pietersma's article summarizes this evidence; Sinaiticus is not one such manuscript.

Finally, the OP seems to be motivated by a question brought up in the comments:

Why does NKJV use the Tetragrammaton (written as LORD [CAPS-smallcaps]) when the KJV did not[?]

The NKJV is using the capital letters in instances where the NT κυριος is quoting a passage from the Hebrew Scriptures where the divine name was used. The preface to the edition says as much and acknowledges that this is a departure from the KJV tradition. I don't think any further information about their rationale is available.

  • Is Nomina sacra "KY" used for both personal name LORD (which references the name as quoted from 'sacred Hebrew scripture' ) and also generic title of Lord? I'm just triple checking to make sure I understand the answer correctly. I suppose Sinaiticus has ZERO distinction and no acknowledgment of a personal name for God? Or, it applies the Nomina sacra "KY" even for generic title of a person as a Lord.
    – user12711
    May 2, 2018 at 14:51



"...Occasional points and a few ligatures are used, though nomina sacra with overlines are employed throughout. Some words usually abbreviated in other manuscripts (such as πατηρ and δαυειδ), are in this codex written in both full and abbreviated forms. The following nomina sacra are written in abbreviated forms: ΘΣ ΚΣ ΙΣ ΧΣ ΠΝΑ ΠΝΙΚΟΣ ΥΣ ΑΝΟΣ ΟΥΟΣ ΔΑΔ ΙΛΗΜ ΙΣΡΛ ΜΗΡ ΠΗΡ ΣΩΡ.[11]..."

There is no indication that the manuscript that the scribes were working from contained any Hebrew at all.

  • It might possibly use two Greek Symbols "Pi-Pi" but unlikely, more likely it uses "Kyrios" in Greek letters.
    – user12711
    Apr 26, 2018 at 18:14

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