Questions tagged [textual-criticism]

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

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3answers
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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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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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Interpreting "psyche" as "soul"?

In the New Testament the Greek term "psyche" often, if not always, gets translated as "soul." Would the original author using that term have meant "psyche" like we mean it today? Or, more precisely, ...
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In Romans 8:28 do "all things work together" or does "God work all things together" for the good?

Romans 8:28 (NA28) reads: Οἴδαμεν δὲ ὅτι τοῖς ἀγαπῶσιν τὸν θεὸν πάντα συνεργεῖ εἰς ἀγαθόν, τοῖς κατὰ πρόθεσιν κλητοῖς οὖσιν. There is also a textual variant that explicitly makes 'God' the subject ...
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Is it corruption of the LXX for adding Deut 32:43 or of the Masoretic for lacking it as quoted in Hebrews 1:6?

What passage is the author of "To the Hebrews" quoting in Hebrews 1:6?: Heb 1:6 And again, when he reintroduces the firstbegotten into the populated lands, he says, "And let all the angels of God ...
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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 does not ...
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Exodus 12.40: Did it originally mention Canaan?

Just as Moses finally leads the Israelites out of slavery, Exodus 12.40 tells us how long the Israelites had lived in Egypt: NRSV The time that the Israelites had lived in Egypt was four hundred and ...
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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 ...
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What is the justification for adding the words "is himself God" in John 1:18 of the New International Version and New Living Translation bibles?

John 1:18 NIV No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known. John 1:18 NLT No one has ever seen God. But the ...
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By what Name did God reveal Himself to Abraham?

God is on several accounts called the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. (Even by Jesus himself and by his apostles he is called their God. e.g. Mk 12:26 /Acts 3:3 I quote from this answer (from ...
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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) I ...
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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 ...
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Why is the doctrine of fasting omitted by the modern revisions of the Bible?

Jesus fasted 40 days in the wilderness (see Matthew 4:2), just as Moses had done and Elijah had done (see Exodus 24:18, 1 Kings 19:8). And Jesus taught the disciples to fast, such as before ...
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2 Samuel 1:26 -- How does the Vulgate have a sentence not present in the Masoretic text or Septuagint?

I was scrolling through English translations of David's eulogy for Saul and Jonathan and noticed the Douay-Rheims Bible/the Vulgate has an entirely new sentence/thought in verse 26. The Masoretic ...
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Psalm 14 or Psalm 53 - Which came first?

Psalm 14 and 53 are nearly identical. Thrice Psalm 14 uses "LORD" (the Tetragrammaton) where 53 uses "God". 53 adds "according to the machalath style; a well-written song"...
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Why are the Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS) significant?

Is there anything that the Dead Sea Scrolls made clearer regarding the texts of the Old Testament? Did their discovery change the way we view the development of the Tanakh?
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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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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 7:...
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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 (...
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Were NT authors aware of differences between MT and LXX

Throughout the New Testament, authors often quoted or referenced the Septuagint (LXX) - a Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible, but there are several notable differences between the Hebrew text that ...
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"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 אֶל־...
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Who are the people God sent to deliver Israel in 1 Samuel 12:11?

The NET gives the following information about the list of names found in 1 Samuel 12:11: In the ancient versions there is some confusion with regard to these names, both with regard to the ...
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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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Why is the phrase 'not being myself under the law' missing in 1 Corinthians 9:20 in the KJV?

1 Corinthians 9:20 KJV 20 And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; 1 ...
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Why does the KJV add "desire" to Mark 11:24?

Mark 11:24 ESV: Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24 KJV: Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ...
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Why does the 1 Samuel 10:27 paragraph found in 4QSamª not appear in other texts?

I was reading 1 Samuel 10 in the New Living Translation and found that in the verse 27, there is the following paragraph: [Nahash, king of the Ammonites, had been grievously oppressing the people ...
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Earliest attestation to Luke's gospel

What is the earliest convincing attestation to the gospel of Luke? I believe that Justin Martyr quotes from Luke's gospel ca.150. Is that generally considered unassailable? Are there other earlier ...
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151 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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Acts 11:20 according to the Codex Sinaiticus

The following is the Greek text of Acts 11:20 according to the Codex Sinaiticus: The Textus Receptus (1550) states, ἦσαν δέ τινες ἐξ αὐτῶν ἄνδρες Κύπριοι καὶ Κυρηναῖοι οἵτινες εἰσελθόντες εἰς ...
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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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Why does NIV translate Revelation 22:14, Blessed are those who wash their robes?

Revelation 22:14 (New International Version) 14 “Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. Revelation 22:...
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What happened to Psalm 14 verses 5–7?

In the classic Book of Common Prayer (Coverdale) psalter, there are these verses 5–7 of Psalm 14 (13 in the LXX/Vulgate numbering): Their throat is an open sepulchre, with their tongues have they ...
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367 views

Is Joshua 21:36-37 authentic or an addition?

These two verses are not found in the NJPS: and out of the tribe of Reuben, Bezer with its pasturelands, Jahaz with its pasturelands, Kedemoth with its pasturelands, and Mephaath with its ...
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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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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 (Aramaic): ...
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"ἐν Ἐφέσῳ" in Ephesians 1:1

Some comments says that the oldest manuscripts do not contain "in Ephesus" e.g. Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary, Scofield Reference Notes, Clarke's Commentary on the Bible... What ...
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616 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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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 ...
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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) ...
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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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What is the evidence that Daniel was composed entirely in Aramaic?

Another question asked why a section running from Ch. 2 - Ch. 7 of Daniel is written in Aramaic rather than in Hebrew like the rest of the book. One of the answers pointed out that some have theorized ...
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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 ...
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Nestle-Aland equivalent 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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How can we understand differences between NWT and Latin/Greek on Acts 20:28?

Is there any early manuscript that shows a word translatable as "son" in Acts 20:28? When looking at Acts 20:28 this is how it reads in: New World Translation (NWT) Pay attention to yourselves ...
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264 views

"Covenant" or "covenants" in Romans 9:4?

In Romans 9:4, Paul writes (NIV): Theirs is the adoption to sonship; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. It seems that some of ...
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Contextually, which English translation/ Greek text seems more probable in Rev. 5:10?

In the King James Version of Rev. 5:10, we find the following phrase, And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth. If we examine the immediate context, the ...
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Why is John 5:4 missing in the NIV?

John 5:3-5 NIV 3 Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. [4] [b] 5 One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. John 5:3-5 KJV 3 ...
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Why is "christou" translated "God" in KJV Romans 10:17?

I was actually looking up the verse for another question I might ask about rhema (actually rēmatos) "hearing, and hearing by..." but I noticed that though I had memory of it saying "the word of God", ...
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What does Cain say to Abel in Genesis 4:8?

The Masoretic version of Genesis 4:8 reads as follows: וַיֹּאמֶר קַיִן, אֶל-הֶבֶל אָחִיו; וַיְהִי בִּהְיוֹתָם בַּשָּׂדֶה, וַיָּקָם קַיִן אֶל-הֶבֶל אָחִיו וַיַּהַרְגֵהוּ. And Cain said to his brother ...
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Why does a segolate noun in Psalm 38:1[2] retain its segol with pronominal suffix?

The first column (right-to-left) is a list of segolate nouns. The second column shows that, when a pronoun is added to segolate noun, the vowel under the first letter of the root reverts to whatever ...

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