NT KJV Text-Critical Article

NT KJV Text-Critical Article - 9/6/11 A Text-Critical...

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Unformatted text preview: 9/6/11 A Text-Critical Comparison of the King James New Testament with Certain Modern Translations1 Lincoln Blumell As 2011 marks the 400th anniversary of the publication of the first edition of the King James Version (KJV) it seems especially fitting to devote an article to this remarkable bible that has had such a profound impact on Western Society.2 The specific subject of the present study is the New Testament (NT) text of the KJV, and more specifically, how the NT text of the KJV differs from certain modern versions. What will follow is not an examination of the translational differences between the KJV and certain modern versions, but rather the text-critical differences between them. Perhaps the best way to clarify exactly what are meant by “text-critical” differences is to provide a brief example from the NT that will be treated in more detail in the body of the article. Mark 7:16 in the KJV reads: “If any man have ears to hear, let him hear.” But if one then goes to one of the many modern English versions of the NT and turns to this same verse they will not see anything except the verse number and a dash: 16 ––. In most modern translations of the NT this verse does not exist. Though some may instinctively conclude that something untoward is going on with whatever translation does not contain Mark 7:16 and assume that this bible version is deliberately hiding or suppressing something,3 the reason for the omission of this verse in most modern translations is not that sinister. Rather, this verse is frequently omitted in a number of 1 I want to thank the two anonymous reviewers of this article for their candid, yet insightful, feedback. This article has been greatly improved as a result of their comments. I also wish to thank the editors of this journal, Carl Griffin and Brian Hauglid, for their many helpful suggestions with this article. 2 On the impact of the KJV on Western Society, whether it be theological, linguistic, or political, see Robert Alter, Pen of Iron: American Prose and the King James Bible (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2010); David Daniel, The Bible in English: Its History and Influence (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2003), 227–50, 461–98; Alister E. McGrath, In the Beginning: The Story of the King James Bible and How It Changed a Nation, a Language, and a Culture (New York: Doubleday, 2001); Benson Bobrick, Wide as the Waters: The Story of the English Bible and the Revolution it Inspired (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2001). 3 This line of reasoning is often followed as a result of 1 Nephi 13:28–29 where Nephi reports that many “plain and precious things” have been deliberately expunged from the Bible. While the Book of Mormon talks about removing text, in some cases the corruption could have certainly included adding material as both addition and removal of text are types of corruption. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011): **–**. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 2 contemporary translations because many ancient Greek manuscripts have no equivalent of Mark 7:16; many manuscripts jump from Mark 7:15 to 7:17.4 This example readily shows how the Greek subtext of a particular NT version can have a significant impact on the English rendering of the text. This study will examine twenty-two passages in the NT that appear in the KJV but are otherwise omitted in most modern translations. As part of this analysis the question that will be asked repeatedly is whether the KJV readings for select verses are warranted and can be defended based on the ancient manuscript evidence, or whether they ought to be rejected as later interpolations. As a result, this study is neither intended to be an apology for the KJV nor an indictment of its NT text.5 While the text of the KJV NT has come under increasing scholarly criticism over the course of the past century, this study hopes to show that while it is deficient in some areas and contains certain readings that cannot be considered authentic or original, in a few places it contains readings that have been omitted in various modern translations that are likely to be authentic. It is therefore the aim of the present study to set forth and clarify the text-critical differences between the KJV NT and modern editions so as to inform and educate the readership of the KJV NT of both its text-critical strengths, and just as importantly, its weaknesses. The Greek Text of the King James Bible6 Before any substantive assessment of the text-critical features of the KJV NT can be carried out, it is necessary, by way of a brief introduction, to say a few things about the basis of the KJV NT Greek text. When King James I of England decided to sponsor a new translation of the Bible at the Hampton Court Conference in January of 1604, he set forth some preliminary stipulations on the project. One of the first 4 For the sake of convenience and to follow modern convention all NT material will be cited by chapter and verse; however, it should be noted that the versification of the NT is a relatively modern phenomenon as ancient manuscripts of the NT were not divided by verses or by chapters. The versification followed by the KJV NT and most modern translations was first devised by the famous Parisian printer Robert Estienne (Lat. Stephanus) (1503– 1559) in his 1551 printed edition of the Greek NT. Chapter divisions as we know them today in the NT are a little earlier and were first introduced to the Latin Vulgate in the thirteenth century by Stephen Langton (c. 1150-1228) the Archbishop of Canterbury. See Robert L. Omanson, A Textual Guide to the Greek New Testament (Stuttgart: German Bible Society, 2006), 14*. 5 This study will aim at balance and will avoid following the overtly apologetic tone found in J. Reuben Clark Jr.’s Why the King James Version (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1956). 6 A more detailed sketch of this section can be found in Lincoln Blumell, “The New Testament Text of the King James Bible,” in The King James Bible and the Restoration, ed. Kent P. Jackson (Provo, UT: BYU Religious Studies Center, 2011). STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 3 guidelines set forth by King James was that the translation of the Bible as a whole would be based on original language manuscripts, not the Latin Vulgate, but Hebrew for the Old Testament and Greek for the New Testament: “A translation be made of the whole Bible, as consonant as can be to the original Hebrew and Greek; and this is to be set out and printed, without any marginal note, and only to be used in all churches of England in time of divine service.”7 The Greek text subsequently settled on by the translators of the KJV NT was from an edition of the Greek NT published in 1589 by the French Calvinist Theodore de Beza (1519–1605).8 In turn, Beza’s Greek NT text was largely based on the 1522 Greek NT text published by the famous Dutch humanist Desiderius Erasmus (1466–1536).9 Since Erasmus’s edition, which would later come to be known as the “Received Text” (Lat. Textus Receptus), is the Greek textual basis for the KJV NT it is worth looking at in more detail.10 After the invention of the printing press in the middle part of the fifteenth century, the first book to be widely printed was the Bible, or more particularly the Latin Vulgate used by the Roman Catholic Church. Moving forward half a century, to the time of Erasmus, there had not yet been a printed edition of the Greek text of the NT. Therefore, an enterprising printer named Johannes Froben from Basel Switzerland approached Erasmus in the summer of 1514 about editing such a text for publication. After some delays and additional goading, Erasmus finally agreed to the project and the following summer (1515) began work on a Greek edition of the NT in Basel, Switzerland. The only Greek manuscripts available to 7 McGrath, In the Beginning, 164. In collaboration with Richard Bancroft, the Bishop of London, James drew up a series of 15 guidelines for the translators. For these guidelines see McGrath, In the Beginning, 172–75. 8 Over the course of Beza’s lifetime he produced nine different editions of the Greek New Testament. A tenth and final edition of Beza’s Greek New Testament was published posthumously in 1611. Only four of the editions published by Beza (1565, 1582, 1588–89, and 1598) were independent editions as the others were simply smaller reprints. See Bruce Metzger and Bart Ehrman, The Text of the New Testament: Its Transmission, Corruption, and Restoration, 4th ed. (New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005), 151–52. 9 While Beza relied heavily on Robert Estienne’s (1503–59) (Lat. Stephanus) 1551 edition of the Greek NT, since this edition was essentially based on an earlier edition produced by Erasmus, Beza’s text was actually based on Erasmus’. 10 The name “Textus Receptus,” which is used to designate the Greek NT text essentially produced by Erasmus, was first coined in 1633 by two Dutch printers Bonaventure and Abraham Elzevir. In the preface to a 1633 edition of a Greek NT they printed, which was based on an earlier edition by Beza, they wrote: “Therefore you have [dear reader] the text, now received by all, in which we give nothing changed or corrupted” (Textum ergo habes, nunc ab omnibus receptum, in quo nihil immutatum aut corruptum damus). Taken from Metzger and Ehrman, The Text of the New Testament, 152. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 4 Erasmus in Basel were in the Dominican Library, and not one of them predated the twelfth century.11 In total Erasmus relied on seven different manuscripts to create his edition of the Greek NT; to save time he simply submitted two of these manuscripts to Froben for publication, one that contained the Gospels and another that contained Acts through Revelation, and wrote any corrections between the lines or in the margins.12 Remarkably, by the following spring (1516) Erasmus’ first edition of the Greek NT was published. Though it would undergo four subsequent reeditions (1519, 1522, 1527, 1535), because it was the first Greek NT printed and widely circulated, it subsequently became the “Received Text” of the NT for many centuries. Over the course of the past century the KJV NT has come under increasing criticism on text-critical grounds because the textual basis upon which its NT was translated is essentially a handful of late (12th – 15th centuries) Greek manuscripts available to Erasmus in Basel in the summer of 1515. As two notable critics of the KJV NT text have stated: It [i.e. Textus Receptus] lies at the basis of the King James Version and all principal Protestant translations in the languages of Europe prior to 1881. So superstitious has been the reverence accorded the Textus Receptus that in some cases attempts to criticize it or emend it have been regarded as akin to sacrilege. Yet, its textual basis is essentially a handful of late and haphazardly collected minuscule manuscripts, and in a dozen passages its rendering is supported by no known Greek witness.13 At the heart of this criticism lies the fact that since the time of the publication of Erasmus’s Greek NT at the start of the fifteenth century a number of much older, and by implication more reliable, NT manuscripts have been discovered. Some of these predate the Greek manuscripts employed by Erasmus by over one thousand years. For example, complete copies of the Greek NT have been discovered that 11 One manuscript, which contained Acts and the Pauline letters, was obtained from the family of Johann Amerbach of Basel. See William W. Combs, “Erasmus and the Textus Receptus” Detroit Baptist Seminary Journal 1 (Spring 1996) 45. 12 On these manuscripts, see Metzger and Ehrman, The Text of the New Testament, 142–44; P.-Y. Brandt, “Manuscripts grecs utilizes par Erasme pour son edition de Novum Instrumentum de 1516,” Theologische Zeitschrift 54 (1998): 120–24; Aland and Aland, The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism. Trans. Erroll F. Rhodes. (Grand Rapids, Mich.: W.B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1995), 4–6; C. C. Tarelli, “Erasmus’s Manuscripts of the Gospels,” Journal of Theological Studies 44 (1943): 155–62. 13 Metzger and Ehrman, The Text of the New Testament, 152. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 5 date to the fourth century, complete copies of certain NT books to the late second century, and fragments of certain NT books to the early or mid-second century.14 One of the most significant contributions of these newly discovered texts is that they sometimes contain readings for various verses or passages that differ markedly from those found in the Textus Receptus and hence the KJV.15 Since these “textual variants,” as they are often called, appear in manuscripts, or fragments of manuscripts, that are rather early, it is often thought that they more accurately reflect the original readings of the NT. As a result, many modern editions of the NT will incorporate these “newer” readings into their translation. However, it needs to be kept in mind that just because a textual variant appears in an ancient manuscript does not necessarily guarantee that it automatically represents the original or that this reading has to be preferred to an alternative reading found in a later manuscript as a number of other factors have to be considered.16 Ancient Texts of the New Testament What follows is a cursory overview of the most important ancient manuscripts used in contemporary scholarship for establishing the earliest text of the NT. Papyri () Various papyri discovered from Egypt, which date between the second and sixth centuries A.D. help supplement our knowledge of the text of the New Testament as such fragments preserve the earliest attestations of select New Testament passages. To date there are about 125 known New Testament papyrus fragments (numbered 1, 2, 3, 4, etc.) that range in length from those fragments containing a 14 Despite the early dating of some of these pieces none of them is to be regarded an autograph copy, i.e. the original text written by one of the various authors of the NT books. 15 To put this in some quantifiable perspective, of the roughly 5,400 NT written manuscripts and fragments of manuscripts that we currently possess, the cumulative differences (i.e. textual variants) between them numbers anywhere from 200,000 to 300,000. As Bart Ehrman has put it: “Perhaps it is simplest to express the figure in comparative terms: there are more differences among our manuscripts than there are words in the New Testament.” See Bart Ehrman, The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writers (4th ed.)(Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008), 490. However, it should not be thought from this that the NT text is completely unreliable. The overwhelming number of these differences are relatively insignificant and have to do with spelling errors and other minor differences. 16 The process or method of evaluating differences and variants between biblical manuscripts in an attempt to determine the most likely original reading is known as textual criticism. For an introduction to biblical textual criticism see: Ehrman, The New Testament: A Historical Introduction, 487–99; Paul D. Wegner, A Student’s Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible (Downers Grove, Ill.: IVP Academic, 2006). STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 6 verse or two to entire codices containing a certain book or books of the New Testament. These fragments are very useful for the textual history of the New Testament since they are the earliest evidence we have and can predate the oldest ancient bibles (mentioned above) by as much as 200–250 years. Notable fragments include: 52, a small fragment that contains John 18:31–33 on one side and 18:37–38 on the other and dates perhaps to the first quarter of the second century A.D. (earliest known piece of the New 17 Testament); 46 dates to c. A.D. 200 and contains many of Paul’s letters; 18 and 66, a virtually complete codex of John’s Gospel that dates to the late second century or early third century A.D.19 Codex Sinaiticus () 20 This fourth-century codex contains complete copies of every book in the New Testament as well as the Epistle of Barnabas and the Shepherd of Hermas along with the Septuagint (LXX). 21 It could even potentially be one of the fifty bibles commissioned by Constantine in the year A.D. 331 and produced 22 under the direction of Eusebius of Caesarea. This bible is written with four Greek columns per page. It was discovered by Constantin Tischendorf in the 1850s at St. Catherine’s Monastery in the Sinai (hence the name Codex Sinaiticus), and he subsequently took it back to St. Petersburg. In 1933 this codex was purchased by the British government for ₤100,000.00 and is presently housed in the British Library. Codex Vaticanus (B) This fourth-century codex contains complete copies of all the books in the New Testament with the exception of part of the Epistle to the Hebrews (chaps. 9–13), all the pastorals (1 & 2 Timothy, Titus) and 17 Dates for papyrus fragments are typically assigned based on paleography – the study of the handwriting of the text. As a result, precise dates (falling within a specific year or couple of years) are not possible to determine. In most cases papyri dated by paleographic means can only be dated with a twenty-five year or half century window. While the earliest date proposed for 52 is somewhere around A.D. 125, it is also possible it could date from the mid or later part of the second century. In any case, there is wide consensus in scholarship that it is a second-century fragment. See Brent Nongbri, “The Use and Abuse of 52: Papyrological Pitfalls in the Dating of the Fourth Gospel,” Harvard Theological Review 98 (2005): 23–48. 18 While a date c. A.D. 200 is often proposed for 46, a third-century dating cannot be ruled out. 19 For a useful introduction to the various New Testament papyri see: Philip W. Comfort and David Barret (eds.), The Text of the Earliest New Testament Greek Manuscripts: New and Complete Transcriptions with Photographs (Wheaton, Il: Tyndale House Publishers Inc. 2001). Cf. Roger S. Bagnall, Early Christian Books in Egypt (Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2009), 1–25; C.E. Hill, Who Chose the Gospels? Probing the Great Gospel Conspiracy (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010), 249–50. 20 The letter represents the siglum (or abbreviation) used in scholarly studies to refer to the specific codex. 21 The Septuagint or LXX as it is commonly known, is simply the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible. 22 Eusebius, Life of Constantine, 4.36. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 7 Revelation. Like Codex Sinaiticus there is a possibility that it may have even been one of the fifty bibles commissioned by Constantine. Alternatively, it could have been one of the copies prepared for the emperor Constans by Athanasius during his exile at Rome c. 341. 23 It is written in capital Greek letters (uncial script) and is laid out with three columns of text per page. It is called the Codex Vaticanus because it is in the possession of the Vatican Library. Codex Alexandrinus (A) This fifth-century A.D. codex contains every book in the New Testament except portions of Matthew (chaps. 1–24), John (chaps. 6–8), and 2 Corinthians (chaps. 4–12). This codex also includes 1 and 2 Clement as well as the majority of the Septuagint. It is called the Codex Alexandrinus because its earliest known location was the city of Alexandria in Egypt. It is written with capital Greek letters and is laid out with two columns per page. Cyril Lucar, Patriarch of Alexandria during the early part of the seventeenth century, sent this bible as a gift to King James I of England. James subsequently died (March 1625) before it arrived, and so it was instead presented to his successor Charles I in 1627. Today it is housed in the British Library. Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) This rather unusually named biblical codex is so-called because in the twelfth century it was erased and reused for some 38 hymns of Ephraem. 24 This fifth-century codex, which contains 209 folia (145 of which belong the New Testament), contains both the Septuagint and the New Testament; however, damaged portions of this ancient bible are riddled with lacunae. 23 25 It is written with capital Greek letters Athanasius, Defense before Constantius, 4. This text is a palimpsest. A palimpsest is a manuscript that has been reused after the original text has been largely erased or removed by scraping or washing. The erased script is typically referred to as the “underscript” and the newer script as the “overscript.” Ephraem “the Syrian,” whose tractates were written over the removed biblical text, was an Eastern church father who lived in Nisibis and Edessa in the latter part of the fourth century. 25 The New Testament lacunae are as follows: Matthew: 1:1–2; 5:15–7:5; 7:26–18:28; 22:21–23:17; 24:10–45; 25:30–26:22; 27:11–46; 28:15–to the end; Mark: 1:1–17; 6:32–8:5; 12:30–13:19; Luke: 1:1–2; 2:5–42; 3:21–4:25; 6:4–36; 7:17–8:28; 12:4–19:42; 20:28–21:20; 22:19–23:25; 24:7–45; John: 1:1–3;1:41–3:33; 5:17–6:38; 7:3–8:34; 9:11–11:7; 11:47–13:7; 14:8–16:21; 18:36–20:25; Acts: 1:1–2; 4:3–5:34; 6:8; 10:43–13:1; 16:37–20:10; 21:31– 22:20; 3:18–24:15; 26:19–27:16; 28:5–to the end; Romans: 1:1–3; 2:5–3:21; 9:6–10:15; 11:31–13:10; 1 Corinthians: 1:1–2; 7:18–9:6; 13:8–15:40; 2 Corinthians: 1:1–2; 10:8–to the end; Galatians: 1:1–20; Ephesians: 1:1–2:18; 4:17– to the end; Philippians: 1:1–22; 3:5–to the end; Colossians: 1:1–2; Thessalonians: 1:1; 2:9–to the end; 2 Thessalonians completely lost; 1 Timothy: 1:1–3:9; 5:20–to the end; 2 Timothy: 1:1–2; Titus: 1:1–2; Philemon: 1–2; 24 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 8 and is laid out with one broad column per page. This important biblical codex is presently housed in the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. 26 Codex Freerianus (W) This fifth-century codex contains a copy of the four Gospels written on 187 folia. However, the order of the gospels is Matthew, John, Luke, Mark. While it contains Matthew and Luke in their entirety, with relatively few lacunae, damaged portions are is missing large sections in Mark (part of chap. 15) and John (part of chaps. 14–16). This codex is written in Greek uncial script in a single column per page. This manuscript was obtained in 1906 by Charles Lang Freer, who was a wealthy American railroad-car manufacturer from Detroit, via an antiquities dealer in Egypt. Presently this manuscript is housed in the Freer Gallery of Art as part of the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. As a result, this manuscript is sometimes referred to as Codex Washingtonianus. Codex Bezae (D) This fifth or sixth-century codex contains many of the books in the New Testament but owing to damage sections of Matthew (chaps. 1, 6–9, 27), Mark (chap. 16), John (chaps. 1–3), Acts (chaps. 8–10, 22–28), Romans (chap. 1), James, 1 & 2 Peter, 1, 2 & 3 John, Jude, and Revelation are missing. Like Codex Freerianus the order of the four gospels is Matthew, John, Luke, Mark. In various places this bible contains a number of unique readings that are not attested elsewhere, though many of them probably represent later interpolations to the various New Testament books. This ancient bible is a Greek and Latin diglot, meaning that it contains Greek text in a single column on the left hand page and Latin text in a single column on the right hand page. It is called the Codex Bezae because it once belonged to Theodore Beza who donated it to Cambridge University in 1581. This bible is still in the possession of Cambridge University. Hebrews: 1:1–2:4; 7:26–9:15; 10:24–12:15; James: 1:1–2; 4:2–to the end; 1 Peter: 1:1–2; 4:5–to the end; 2 Peter: 1:1; 1: 1:1–2; 4:3–to the end; 1 John: 1:1-2; 4:3 – to the end; 2 John completely lost; 3 John: 1–2; Jude: 1–2; Revelation: 1:1–2; 3:20–5:14; 7:14–17; 8:5–9:16; 10:10–11:3; 16:13–18:2; 19:5–to the end. On the lacunae see Nestle-Aland26, p. 689. 26 Also referred to as the “Freer Codex.” STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 9 Nestle-Aland Novum Testamentum Graece (NA27) This Greek version of the New Testament represents the standard critical edition of the New Testament used in contemporary scholarship. The text is named after the two scholars who put together a critical edition of the Greek New Testament: Eberhard Nestle (1851–1913) and Kurt Aland (1915–1994). In 1898 Eberhard Nestle assembled a Greek text of the New Testament based on previous editions. Over the course of the last century this version was constantly updated and revised and in 1993 the 27th edition was produced (= NA27), primarily under the direction and editorship of Kurt Aland. The text is edited and produced by the Institut für neutestamentliche Textforschung (Institute for New Testament Textual Research) at the University of Münster. The Greek text of the NA27 is known as an “eclectic text” since it was compiled by a committee based on readings from a wide array of ancient manuscripts and does not 27 represent a single manuscript. Passages in the KJV Omitted in Various Modern Translations of the NT28 1. Matthew12:47 KJV Then one said unto him, “Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee. εἶπε δέ τις αὐτῷ, Ἰδού, ἡ μήτηρ σου καὶ οἱ ἀδελφοί σου ἔξω ἑστήκασι, ζητοῦντές σοι λαλῆσαι.29 This verse forms the middle section of a narrative unit (Matthew12:46–50, the true kindred of Jesus) where Jesus tells those listening that “whosoever shall do the will of my father” are “my brother, and sister, and mother.” (v. 50). This verse is omitted in some modern translations (ESV, RSV) but present in others (CEV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, TEV) because it is not found in certain ancient manuscripts, such as Codex Sinaiticus () and Codex Vaticanus (B). However, this verse is attested in Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C), Codex Freerianus (W), Codex Bezae (D) and a later corrector added 27 For English introduction to this text see pp. 44*–83* of NA27. This does not take into account places where portions of a verse are removed. The only such text treated will be 1 John 5:7b–8a because it constitutes a significant part of the two verses. 29 Greek text taken from F.H.A. Scrivener’s 1894 edition of the Greek New Testament. I have employed this text throughout the article when I place it in parallel column with the KJV translation at the start of each section since it essentially constitutes the “Textus Receptus” and would have been the Greek text employed by the 28 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 10 it to Codex Sinaiticus (*).30 Though the NRSV and NIV include this verse they have placed a footnote after it briefly explaining that it is omitted in select ancient witnesses. While this verse is not attested in the most ancient manuscripts there is some reason to think that it was originally part of Matthew’s Gospel. The reason for its absence in select manuscripts may have resulted from it being accidently omitted by an ancient scribe due to the phenomenon of homoioteleuton.31 Since both Matthew12:46 and Matthew12:47 end with λαλῆσαι (“to speak”), it is conceivable that after a scribe finished writing v.46 he looked back at his exemplar and his eye skipped to the end of v.47 since it ended with the very same word as v. 46, and he then resumed writing and thereby inadvertently omitted this verse. Furthermore, as v. 47 appears to be necessary for the following verses to make sense, it seems likely that it is probably an authentic verse and not a later scribal interpolation. Interestingly, when this story is told in Mark 3:31–35 the equivalent of the Matthew12:47 (= Mark 3:32) appears and is securely attested in the manuscript tradition. Though it might be tempting to suppose that certain modern translations of the New Testament have omitted this verse because they are attempting to propagate/defend the doctrine of the perpetual virginity of Mary32 and obfuscate the fact that Jesus had any biological siblings, it is already evident from v. 46, as translators of the KJV NT. Scrivener’s edition is based on Theodore Beza’s 1598 edition of the Greek New Testament. 30 Codex Sinaiticus (), as well as some of the other ancient manuscripts of the New Testament, principally Codex Freerianus (W) and Codex Bezae (D), had various correctors over the ages who both inserted and omitted verses as they saw fit to correct the various reading preserved in these bibles. While the correctors are later and their subsequent corrections are secondary, they still offer some valid text critical insights into the potential authenticity/inauthenticity of select verses. For the correctors of Codex Sinaiticus see Dirk Jongkind, Scribal Habits of Codex Sinaiticus (Piscataway, NJ: Gorgias Press, 2007), 9–20. For the correctors of Codex Bezae see David Parker, Codex Bezae: An Early Christian Manuscript and its Text (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992), 35–48. Codex Alexandrinus (A) is defective for much of the Gospel of Matthew so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. 31 An omission that occurs when two words or two separate phrases have identical endings and the scribe/copyist’s eye slips from one to the next and accidentally omits the intervening material. On this phenomena see Paul D. Wegner, A Student’s Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible, 49–50. 32 The doctrine of the perpetual virginity of Mary holds that Mary remained a virgin throughout her lifetime and that Jesus was her only biological offspring and that she never “knew” Joseph in the biblical sense of the word (virgo intacta). This tradition is held principally in Roman Catholicism and in Eastern Orthodoxy. The idea of her perpetual virginity is first introduced in the Protoevangelium of James where it is argued that the “brethren” of Jesus were actually children of Joseph from a previous marriage. It is not until the fourth century when Mary is referred to as “ever virgin” (ἀειπάρθενος) and in the fifth century when this doctrine becomes fairly established. See Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church3 (hereafter ODCC) pp. 1047–48 (Mary, the Blessed Virgin). In Erasmus’ STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 11 well as the corresponding Markan account (cf. Mark 3:31–1), that Jesus had “brethren” in the biological sense. The omission of this verse in modern translations has far more to do with the fact that it is not attested in certain ancient manuscripts than with the doctrine of the perpetual virginity of Mary. 2. Matthew17:21 KJV Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. τοῦτο δὲ τὸ γένος οὐκ ἐκπορεύεται εἰ μὴ ἐν προσευχῇ καὶ νηστείᾳ. This verse concludes a narrative unit (Matthew 12:14–21, Jesus Cures a Boy with a Demon) where Jesus is able to expel a demon from a boy after his disciples were unable to do so and are then chided by Jesus because they lacked the necessary faith to perform the exorcism (v. 20). In the KJV v. 21 ostensibly explains and clarifies why the demon could not be excised by the disciples. In most modern translations of the New Testament this verse is omitted (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) because it is not present in either Codex Sinaiticus ()33 or Codex Vaticanus (B).34 It is present in Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C), Codex Freerianus (W), and Codex Bezae (D). The omission of this verse in the two earliest manuscripts is relatively strong evidence against its authenticity, notwithstanding the evidence for the verse in later manuscripts. Unless a plausible explanation can be made for its accidental omission, it would seem that it was not an original part of Matthew. However, there is nothing about this verse, or surrounding verses for that matter (v. 20 and v. 22), that could help explain its absence as a result of a common scribal error such as homoioteleuton or homoioarcton.35 A more plausible explanation is that this verse represents a deliberate addition to Matthew by a later scribe who assimilated it from the same account in Mark (Mark 9:14–29, Jesus Cures a Boy with a Demon). Mark 9:29 reads: “And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.” (καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, τοῦτο τὸ γένος ἐν οὐδενὶ δύναται ἐξελθεῖν, εἰ μὴ ἐν προσευχῇ καί discussion of this verse he will discuss the various issues surrounding the perpetual virginity of Mary at some length by referencing various patristic authors. See Anne Reeve (ed.), Erasmus’ Annotations of the New Testament: The Gospels. Facsimile of the final Latin text (1535) with earlier variants (1516, 1519, 1522 and 1527). (London: Duckworth, 1986), 58–59. 33 This verse will appear in a much later corrector of Sinaiticus (c). But this is quite late. 34 Codex Alexandrinus (A) does not contain most of the Gospel of Matthew so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. 35 Homoioarcton – An omission that occurs when two words or two separate phrases have identical or similar beginnings and scribe/copyists’ eye slips from one to the next and accidentally omits the intervening material. See Paul D. Wegner, A Student’s Guide to Textual Criticism of the Bible, 49–50. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) 36 νηστείᾳ.). TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 12 Consequently, there is some reason to suspect that Matthew 17:21 may not have originally been a part of the Gospel and that it was added in select manuscripts in order to deliberately harmonize the accounts in Mark and Matthew. A look at the narrative block of Matthew 17:14–21 shows that v. 21 is somewhat intrusive and foreign as the block nicely ends with v. 20 where the point is straightforwardly made by Jesus that the disciples lacked the necessary faith to cast out the demon. 3. KJV Matthew18:11 For the Son of man is come to save that which was lost. ἦλθε γὰρ ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου σῶσαι τὸ ἀπολωλός. In the KJV this verse serves as the effective beginning of the Parable of the Lost Sheep (Matthew18:11–14). This verse is omitted in a number of modern translations (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) because it does not occur in either Codex Sinaiticus () or Codex Vaticanus (B).37 Likewise, neither the third-century church father Origen (c. A.D. 185–254) nor the third/fourth-century church father Eusebius of Caesarea (c. A.D. 260–340) was aware of this verse in 38 the copies of Matthew they used. Also, it is worth pointing out here that in Luke’s version of the Parable of the Lost Sheep (15:4–6), which is somewhat similar to Matthew’s rendering, the equivalent of 36 While the way the verse appears in Matthew is not an exact citation of how it appears in Mark, it is remarkably close and is more than a loose paraphrase. Certainly an attempt at some kind of harmonization is being made here. In Mark 9:29 “and fasting” (καὶ νηστεία) does not appear in Codex Vaticanus (B), Codex Sinaiticus (), nor does it seem to appear in 45. 45 is an early third-century papyrus codex containing sections of Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and Acts. While one cannot be absolutely certain that 45 does not contain “and fasting” since the text is damaged in this section of the verse and contains a lacuna, the line spacing would otherwise suggest it is not present. On this codex see Philip W. Comfort and David Barrett (eds.), The Text of the Earliest New Testament Greek Manuscripts, 155–201 (esp. p. 171). On the other hand, “and fasting” does appear in Codex Alexandrinus (A), Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C), Codex Freerianus (W), and Codex Bezae (D). Nevertheless, a number of modern version have dropped it (i.e. “and fasting”) from their translations (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV). Commenting on this specific verse Bart Ehrman has argued that “and fasting” was likely added to Mark 9:29 in a later monastic context where fasting was a part of the daily ascetic regimen. See Bart Ehrman, Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why (New York: HarperSanFrancisco, 2005), 97; cf. Philip W. Comfort, New Testament Text and Translation Commentary: Commenting on the Variant Readings in the Ancient Manuscripts and how they Relate to the Major English Translations (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 2008), 130. 37 Codex Alexandrinus (A) does not contain most of the Gospel of Matthew so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) is also damaged is this section of Matthew so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. 38 Origen composed a commentary on the Gospel of Matthew sometime c. A.D. 246–48 (Eusebius, Hist. eccl. 6.36) and while it is only preserved partially it is evident that he was not aware of Matthew 18:11 as his commentary skips from Matthew 18:10 to 18:12 without any comment on this verse. Similarly, it is evident in Eusebius’ work on Matthew that he did not know Matthew 18:11. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 13 Matthew 18:11 is not included. However, this verse (Matthew18:11) does appear in both Codex Freerianus (W) and Codex Bezae (D). Given that this verse is unknown in any manuscript before the fifth century, is absent from the two most important NT manuscripts, and was unknown to both Origen and Eusebius in the copies of Matthew they were reading, it seems fairly certain that it was a later interpolation and is not authentic to Matthew. It is possible that at some point a scribe took Luke 19:10, a verse that shares a number of distinct parallels with Matthew 18:11, and inserted it in Matthew to provide a connection between v. 10 (the end of a short discourse on Temptations and Sin [18:6–9]) and vv. 12–14 that contains the Parable of the Lost Sheep.39 Luke 19:10 concludes the story of Jesus and Zacchaeus (19:1–10) and reads: “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” (ἦλθε γὰρ ὁ υἱὸς τοῦ ἀνθρώπου ζητῆσαι καὶ σῶσαι τὸ ἀπολωλός.). With the exception of two words (ζητῆσαι καὶ [“to seek and”]) Luke 19:10 shares an exact 40 verbal overlap with Matthew 18:11. As v.11 talks about saving “that which was lost” it is easy to see why some scribe or copyist might have been inclined to take this verse from Luke and insert it into Matthew as it provides a nice segue into the Parable of the Lost Sheep as there is a seeming semantic gap between vv. 10 and v. 12. 4. KJV Matthew21:44 And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. καὶ ὁ πεσὼν ἐπὶ τὸν λίθον τοῦτον συνθλασθήσεται· ἐφ’ ὅν δ’ ἄν πέσῃ λικμήσει αὐτόν. This verse occurs in the concluding section of the Parable of the Wicked Tenants (21:33–46). Within this parable v. 44 is spoken by Jesus to the chief priests and Pharisees to clarify v. 42 where he quotes Psalm 118:22 that “the stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner.” In a number of modern bible versions this verse has either been completely omitted (NJB, RSV, TEV) or is included (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NLT, NWT, NRSV, REB) with an explanatory footnote because it is absent from certain ancient manuscripts, most notably Codex Bezae (D). Additionally, with the publication of 39 104 , a second-century papyrus fragment that contains Matthew 21:34–37 on one side and Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 36. In some manuscripts of Matthew, 18:11 appears exactly as it is cited in Luke and would lend some support to the claim that it was probably taken over from Luke 19:10. See Comfort, New Testament Text and Translation Commentary, 52–3. 40 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 14 the remains of some proceeding verses on the other side (vv. 43 and 45?), it has been tentatively asserted that v.44 seems to be absent and that the text skips from v. 43 to v. 45. 41 If this fragment could serve as evidence for the omission of v.44 it would be very significant given its early date. Yet, the text on the backside of the fragment is so effaced and illegible that one cannot really use the fragment with much certainty to claim that v.44 is missing. 42 On the other hand, the verse is attested in both Codex Vaticanus (B) and Codex Sinaiticus () as well as Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) and Codex Freerianus (W). Given the nature of the evidence it is difficult to determine with much certainty whether v.44 is a later interpolation or is actually authentic. Those who argue that this verse was added to Matthew assert that it was simply borrowed from Luke 20:18 in order to more fully harmonize Matthew’s telling of the parable 43 with Luke’s account (20:9–19): (v. 18) “Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.”44 However, while the two verses certainly share similarities the beginnings of the respective verses are not the same and Matthew’s placement of the verse is different than Luke’s within the body of the parable. In Luke this verse (v. 18) immediately follows Jesus’ citation of Psalm 118:22 whereas in Mathew there is an intervening verse (v. 43) where Jesus declares that the “kingdom of God” shall be given to another nation. If this is simply a matter of some early scribe or copyist trying to harmonize Matthew and Luke then why not insert this verse right after v. 42 so that it parallels exactly with Luke? If the verse is original to Mathew then it could have fallen out from certain manuscripts as a result of a scribal slip. Bruce Metzger has raised the possibility that if v. 44 41 This fragment was first published as P.Oxy. LXIV 4404. While the editor of the fragment, J.D. Thomas, raised the possibility that v.44 was missing he was reluctant to do so with certainty since the text is very badly effaced on the back of the fragment where vv. 43 and 45 seem to appear. The reading on the back of the papyrus is so tentative that with the exception of one letter Thomas wrote every other letter with an underdot that signifies the uncertainty of the reading. More recently, Comfort has argued that v.44 is missing from the fragment (New Testament Text and Translation Commentary, 65); however, he merely asserts this based on the suggestion of Thomas without offering any additional argumentation. Having examined a digital image of the backside of the papyrus fragment I do not think that one can confidently argue that v.44 is not attested. In the section where v.45 supposedly begins Thomas reads ακου]σ̣α̣[ν]τ̣ες̣ ο̣[ι , the beginning words of v.45. Alternatively one could also read κ̣α̣ι̣ π̣εσ̣ω̣[ν, the beginning words of v.44. 42 In Origen’s Commentary on Matthew it seems that he was unaware of the verse and that it was missing from the copy of Matthew he was reading since his commentary skips this verse completely. 43 Comfort, New Testament Text and Translation Commentary, 65. 44 Mark 12:1–12 also contains a version of the Parable of the Wicked Tenants; however, he does not include a verse comparable to either Matthew 21:44 or Luke 20:18. He does however include the quote of Psalm 118:22 (cf. Mark 12:10). STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 15 is original to Matthew then it could have been accidently omitted in some manuscripts as a result of homoioarcton. In v. 43 the last word is αὐτῆς (“of it”) and in v. 44. the last word is αὐτόν (“it”).45 The scribe could have finished writing v. 43 looked back to his exemplar and skipped ahead to the end of v. 44, thus omitting this verse, because the last word begins with the same three letters as that of the proceeding verse.46 In light of the ancient manuscript evidence, especially the fact that it is attested in both Codex Sinaiticus () and Codex Vaticanus (B), there is some reason to suppose that this verse is probably authentic and not a later interpolation. All the same, if the backside of 104 can ever be convincingly read and v.44 is indeed omitted, it would serve as strong evidence that Matthew 21:44 is likely a later interpolation. 5. KJV Matthew 23:14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation. οὐαὶ ὑμῖν, γραμματεῖς καὶ Φαρισαῖοι, ὑποκριταί, ὅτι κατεσθίετε τὰς οἰκίας τῶν χηρῶν, καὶ προφάσει μακρὰ προσευχόμενοι· διὰ τοῦτο λήψεσθε περισσότερον κρίμα. In Matthew 23, v. 14 functions as one of a number of “woes” pronounced by Jesus against the Scribes and Pharisees at the Temple Mount (Matthew 23:1–36). This verse is omitted in most modern translations of the New Testament (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NWT, NRSV, REB, RSV, TEV) since it does not appear in any of the most important ancient manuscripts. It is not attested in Codex Sinaiticus () or Codex Vaticanus (B), and it is also omitted in Codex Bezae (D).47 This verse is first attested in Codex Freerianus (W) but it is placed in a different order and appears before v. 13 (technically as v. 12). While it is not impossible that it was accidently omitted as a result of homoioarcton since verses 13, 15, 16, all begin with the word “woe” (οὐαὶ) and a scribe could have inadvertently skipped v. 14 because it too begins with “woe,” such an explanation seems unlikely because of the early and widespread absence of the verse in a number of different manuscripts. It does not seem plausible to suppose that 45 Both αὐτῆς and aὐtόn are different genders of the Greek personal pronoun αὐτός, αὐτή, αὐτό, that may be variously translated depending on the context. The translations provided are based on the context of the respective verses. 46 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 47. 47 Codex Alexandrinus (A) does not contain most of the Gospel of Matthew so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. Likewise, Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) is also damaged is this section of Matthew so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 16 multiple scribes all working independently from one another all accidentally skipped the very same verse. A more plausible explanation is that v.14 is likely an interpolation derived from either Mark 12:40 or Luke 20:47 where remarkably similar sayings are directed specifically against the Scribes: 48 (Mark 12:40) “Which devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayers: these shall receive greater damnation.; (Luke 20:47) “Which devour widows' houses, and for a shew make long prayers: the same shall receive greater damnation.”49 That this verse is an interpolation to the Gospel of Matthew is further evidenced by that fact that in the manuscripts where it does appear, which are all relatively late, it appears in different places within Matthew 23. In some manuscripts it appears after v. 13 or before v. 13.50 Here it is worthy of note that even though the “Textus Receptus” put this verse before v. 13 the KJV (as well as the NKJV) moved this verse to its present location after v.13. 6. KJV Mark 7:16 If any man have ears to hear, let him hear. εἴ τις ἔχει ὦτα ἀκούειν ἀκουέτω. The present verse comes from the middle section of Jesus’ rather extended discourse against the “traditions of the Elders” among the Pharisees (Mark 7:1–23). This discourse is prompted by the Pharisees questioning the disciples of Jesus because they partook of food without first washing their hands (vv. 2–3). This discourse may be divided into two sections: vv. 6–15 where Jesus criticizes the Pharisees for their hypocrisy and vv. 17–23 where the disciples question Jesus about what he had said to the Pharisees. Thus, v. 16 acts as a mediating verse between the two sections. This verse is omitted in most modern translations of the New Testament (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) since it does not appear in either Codex Sinaiticus () or Codex Vaticanus (B). It does however appear in the later manuscripts of Codex Alexandrinus (A), Codex Freerianus (W) and Codex 51 Beza (D). 48 Comfort, New Testament Text and Translation Commentary, 69–70. Both Mark 12:40 and Luke 20:47 are otherwise securely attested in the manuscript record. It is interesting to note that whereas Mark has parallel particles (κατεσθίοντες/προσευχόμενοι) Luke changes these to finite verbs (κατεσθίουσιν/προσεύχονται). Matthew first employs a finite verb and then a particle (κατεσθίετε/προσευχόμενοι). 50 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 50. 51 Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) is damaged is this section of Mark so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. 49 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 17 Looking at the context of v.16 there is no readily available explanation to account for the loss of the verse via accidental scribal error. Similarly, as v.16 has no apparent theological implications and elsewhere in the Gospel of Mark the very same saying is attested at 4:9 and 4:23 one cannot easily suppose that this verse was deliberately expunged from the Gospel. A more likely explanation was that it was inserted at some point to provide a sequel to v.14 and bridge the two sections that comprise Jesus’ discourse in Mark 7. One commentator has noted about the verse: “It appears to be a comment by a copyist (taken from 4.9 or 4.23), introduced as an appropriate comment coming after v. 14.”52 7. KJV Mark 9:44 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.” ὅπου ὁ σκώληξ αὐτῶν οὐ τελευτᾷ, καὶ τὸ πῦρ οὐ σβέννυται. Mark 9:44 (as well as 9:46 [see #8 below]) forms part of a narrative unit where Jesus exhorts his followers to abstain from sin by admonishing them that it is better to “cut off” any offending body parts (i.e. hand, foot, eye) and be maimed (metaphorically speaking) than to be cast into “hell” on account of sins committed by the respective offending bodily members (Mark 9:42–50). Within this unit v. 44 (and v. 46) is used to vividly reinforce the consequences of sin that are associated with the torments of “hell” (vv. 43, 45, 47 [lit. “Gehenna”]). This verse (as well as v.46) is omitted in most modern translations of the New Testament (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) because it is not attested in the two oldest manuscripts: Codex Sinaiticus () or Codex Vaticanus (B). Similarly, it is omitted in Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) and Codex Freerianus (W). On the other hand this verse (as well as v. 46) is attested in Codex Alexandrinus (A) and Codex Beza (D). The omission of this verse (and v. 46) is not crucial in terms of the meaning of the passage because the very same saying appears in v.48, which is otherwise securely attested in the ancient manuscript tradition: (Mark 9:48) “Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.” In order to balance out this narrative unit it is possible that at some point a scribe or copyist added v. 44 (as well as v. 46), which is derived from v. 48, in order to repeat and reemphasize the punishments that await those who sin. This balances out the narrative because each time Jesus issues a warning to the disciples to “cut off” a body part it is reinforced with a reference 52 Omanson, A Textual Guide to the Greek New Testament, 77. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 18 to the torments of “hell”, specifically “worms” and “fire,” for greater effect. This repetition, or epistrophe, was a well-known literary trope in antiquity used for effect and balance, and as Jesus does not employ this kind of repetition anywhere else in Mark its presence here could lend some additional weight to the argument that it was added by a scribe. All the same, just because epistrophe does not occur elsewhere in Mark is not a cogent argument on its own that it could not be authentic and used here. In any case, the nature of the manuscript evidence strongly suggests that v. 44 (and v. 46) was a later interpolation based on v. 48. 8. KJV Mark 9:46 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.” ὅπου ὁ σκώληξ αὐτῶν οὐ τελευτᾷ, καὶ τὸ πῦρ οὑ σβέννυται. See notes on Mark 9:44 no. 7. above. 9. KJV Mark 11:26 But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses. εἰ δὲ ὑμεῖς οὖκ ἀφίετε, οὐδὲ ὁ πατὴρ ὑμῶν ὁ ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοἶς ἀφήσεὶ τὰ παραπτώματα ὑμῶν. Mark 11:26 forms part of a narrative unit where Jesus instructs his disciples concerning the meaning behind the withering of a fig tree just outside of Jerusalem and teaches about the principle of faith (11:20– 26). Previously in the chapter (one day earlier) Jesus had cursed this very fig tree on his way to Jerusalem because it did not have any figs (11:12–14). The very next day, on a return trip to Jerusalem, Peter notices that the fig tree is now completely withered, which prompts Jesus to give the discourse of which Mark 11:26 is the concluding verse. In most modern translations of the New Testament (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) this verse is omitted since it does not appear in Codex Sinaiticus (), Codex Vaticanus (B), and Codex Freerianus (W). This verse does, however, appear in Codex Alexandrinus (A), Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C), and Codex Beza (D). Though case could be made that it dropped out due to homoioteleuton, since both the present verse and the preceding verse (v. 25) end with ὑμῶν (“your”), and a scribe or copyist could have inadvertently skipped the verse as his eye moved from the end of v. 25 to the end of the present verse, its absence in a number of different codices makes this scenario somewhat unlikely as one would have to assume that multiple scribes working independently all made the very same error. A more plausible explanation, as STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 19 Erasmus already pointed out in his notes on the NT (see notes below) seems to be that this verse was added at some point in imitation of Matthew 6:15 where Jesus gives instruction concerning prayer (following the Lord’s Prayer [6:9–13]): But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. (ἐὰν δὲ μὴ ἀφῆτε τοῖς ἀνθρώποις τὰ παραπτώματα αὐτῶν, οὐδὲ ὁ πατὴρ ὑμῶν ἀφήσει τὰ παραπτώματα ὑμῶν.). A plausible reason for inserting a close equivalent of Matthew 6:15 at this point could be because in the preceding verses (Mark 11:24–5) Jesus talks about prayer and the necessity of forgiveness (esp. v. 25), especially the necessity of forgiving one who has offended you so that God might forgive you of your trespasses in your prayerful petition. As the present verse is remarkably similar to v. 25, so close in fact that it runs the risk of being redundant, it seems likely that it was later added for emphasis and should really be seen as an expansion of v. 25. As the narrative unit currently stands (11:20–26) this verse can be omitted with no apparent impact on the overall meaning of the pericope. Erasmus’ notes on this verse: Notes on Mark. From Chapter Eleven “But if you should not forgive.” In most Greek manuscripts [lit. books] these things are not added [i.e. present], Theophylact 53 neither reads nor interprets. It seems possible that this has been inserted from Matthew six [i.e. Matthew 6]. 54 10. KJV Mark 15:28 And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, And he was numbered with the transgressors. καὶ ἐπληρώθη ἡ γραφὴ ἡ λέγουσα, καὶ μετὰ ἀνόμων ἐλογίσθη. This verse is part of the narrative unit that comprises the actual crucifixion narrative in Mark (15:21– 32). Right after it is reported that Jesus was crucified between “two thieves” (v.27) this verse is added, which is a quote from Isaiah 53:12b. In virtually every modern New Testament translation this verse is 53 Theophylact (of Ohrid) (b. c. 1050/60; d. after 1125) was a Byzantine exegete who eventually became Archbishop of Ohrid in the region of the Bulgarians. His principal works include a series of commentaries on several books in the Old Testament as well as commentaries on every book in the New Testament with the exception of Revelation. Erasmus was influenced considerably by his writings and frequently refers to him in his notes. On Theophylact see ODCC 1607. 54 English translation is my own and is based on Latin text of Erasmus given in Anne Reeve (ed.), Erasmus’ Annotations of the New Testament: The Gospels. Facsimile of the final Latin text (1535) with earlier variants (1516, 1519, 1522 and 1527). (London: Duckworth, 1986), 139. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 20 omitted (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) since it does not appear in any of the ancient manuscripts: Codex Sinaiticus (); Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Alexandrinus (A); Codex Ephraem Syri Rescriptus (C); Codex Beza (D). 55 In fact, this verse does not appear in any NT manuscript until the end of the sixth century.56 There is no reason why this verse should be absent from every major ancient manuscript except that it was added at a much later date to this Gospel. The addition is almost certainly drawn from Luke 22:37 where Jesus foretells of his crucifixion at the Last Supper and quotes Isaiah 53:12b: (Luke 22:37) “For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end” (emphasis added). Beyond the textual data, which firmly indicates that this verse was added, its authenticity may be further doubted since as a general rule Mark tends to rarely quote (unlike Matthew and to a lesser extent John and Luke) from the Old Testament. 11. KJV Mark 16:9–20 9 57 Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils. 10 And she went and told them that had been with him, as they mourned and wept. 11 And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not. 12 After that he appeared in another form unto two of them, as they walked, and went into the country. 13 And they went and told it unto the residue: neither believed they them. 14 Afterward he appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen. 15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. 17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly 55 9 ἀναστὰς δὲ πρωῒ πρώτῃ σαββάτου ἐφάνη πρῶτον Μαρίᾳ τῇ Μαγδαληνῇ, ἀφ’ ἧς ἐκβεβλήκει ἑπτὰ δαιμόνια. 10 ἐκείνη πορευθεῖσα ἀπήγγειλε τοῖς μετ’ αὐτοῦ γενομένοις, πενθοῦσι καὶ κλαίουσι. 11 κἀκεῖνοι ἀκούσαντες ὅτι ζῇ καὶ ἐθεάθη ὑπ’ αὐτῆς ἠπίστησαν. 12 μετὰ δὲ ταῦτα δυσὶν ἐξ αὐτῶν περιπατοῦσιν ἐφανερώθη ἐν ἑτέρᾳ μορφῇ πορευομένοις εἰς ἀγρόν· 13 κἀκεῖνοι ἀπελθόντες ἀπήγγειλαν τοῖς λοιποῖς· οὐδὲ ἐκείνοις ἐπίστευσαν. 14 ὑστερον, ἀνακειμένοις αὐτοῖς τοῖς ἕνδεκα ἐφανερώθη, καὶ ὠνείδισε τὴν ἀπιστίαν αὐτῶν καὶ σκληροκαρδίαν ὅτι τοῖς θεασαμένοις αὐτὸν ἐγηγερμένον οὐκ ἐπίστευσαν. 15 καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς, πορευθέντες εἰς τὸν κόσμον ἅπαντα, κηρύξατε τὸ εὐαγγέλιον πάσῃ τῇ κτίσει. 16 ὁ πιστεύσας καὶ βαπτισθεὶς σωθήσεται, ὁ δὲ ἀπιστήσας κατακριθήσεται. 17 σημεῖα δὲ τοῖς πιστεύσασιν ταῦτα παρακολουθήσει· ἐν τῷ ὀνόματί μου δαιμόνια ἐκβαλοῦσιν, γλώσσαις λαλήσουσι καιναῖς, 18 ὄφεις ἀροῦσι, κἂν θανάσιμόν τι πίωσιν, οὐ μὴ αὐτοὺς βλάψει, ἐπὶ ἀρρώστους χεῖρας ἐπιθήσουσι, καὶ Codex Freerianus (W) is defective in this part of Mark so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. 56 Uncial 083 (sixth century) discovered in the early 1970s at St. Catherine’s Monastery. Other manuscripts with this verse include Uncial 013 (ninth century) and Δ 037 (ninth century). 57 The literature on the textual authenticity/inauthenticity of Mark 16: 9–20 is large and can hardly be cited here. For a fairly recent bibliography of the subject see: N. Clayton Croy, The Mutilation of Mark’s Gospel (Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2003), 190–230. For a good LDS analysis see: Thomas Wayment, “The Endings of Mark and Revelation in the King James Bible,” in Kent P. Jackson (ed.), The King James Bible and the Restoration (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center, 2011). STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 21 thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. 19 So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. 20 And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen. καλῶς ἕξουσιν. 19 ὁ μὲν οὖν κύριος, μετὰ τὸ λαλῆσαι αὐτοῖς, ἀνελήφθη εἰς τὸν οὐρανὸν, καὶ ἐκάθισεν ἐκ δεξιῶν τοῦ θεοῦ. 20 ἐκεῖνοι δὲ ἐξελθόντες ἐκήρυξαν πανταχοῦ, τοῦ κυρίου συνεργοῦντος, καὶ τὸν λόγον βεβαιοῦντος διὰ τῶν ἐπακολουθούντων σημείων. ἀμήν. The last twelve verses of Mark (16:9–20) contain Jesus’s post-resurrection appearances to the disciples (vv. 9–14) and a charge, which is accompanied by divine promises (vv. 17–8), to take the gospel “to every creature” (v. 15). The final verse (v. 20) then concludes with a summation of the ministry of the apostles’: “And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.” While these twelve verses are not omitted in any modern edition of the NT, in every edition they are either placed in double brackets or italics with a note that explains that they do not appear in certain early manuscripts. Most notably, Mark 16:9–20 does not appear in Codex Vaticanus (B) or Codex Sinaiticus (). Likewise, it is also omitted in certain Latin, Armenian, Georgian, and Ethiopic copies of the Gospel.58 On the other hand, these verses are attested in Codex Alexandrinus (A), Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C), and Codex Bezae (D). Additionally, an unusual variant (see below) of these verses is attested in Codex Freerianus (W). The patristic literature (early church fathers) on these verses is mixed; some authors seem to have been aware of them in their copies of Mark while others seem to have not known about them altogether or were unsure of their authenticity. In a passing remark Justin Martyr (c. A.D. 100–165) in his First Apology (c. 150) notes that the apostles “went forth and preached everywhere” (ἐξελθόντες πανταχοῦ ἐκήρυξαν)59 in language that is basically identical to a phrase that otherwise only appears in the Gospels at Mark 16:20.60 Since it is a short verbal overlap one cannot be totally certain that Justin is necessarily referencing Mark 16:20; all the same, it is possible that this verbal overlap is due to Justin’s awareness of this very verse. In any case, the first definite reference to one of the final twelve verses in Mark comes from Irenaeus (c. A.D. 130–200). In his work Against Heresies (c. A.D. 180) he states, “But at the end 58 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 102–03. Justin, 1 Apology, 1.45. 60 In Mark 16:20 the order of the last two words is reversed (ἐξελθόντες ἐκήρυξαν πανταχοῦ) but this makes no difference to the meaning of the phrase. 59 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 22 of his gospel, Mark says, ‘And then after the Lord Jesus spoke to them, he was received up in heaven and sits on the right hand of God.’”61 (In fine autem euangelii ait Marcus: Et quidem Dominus Jesus, posteaquam locutus est eis, receptus est in caelos, et sedit ad dexteram Dei.).62 Here it is certain that Irenaeus is referencing Mark 16:19, even though the quote does not exactly agree with the way this verse 63 will appear in the Vulgate. One other second-century author that may have been aware of Mark 16:9–20 is Tatian (A.D. II). In his Diatesseron (c. A.D. 150–60), an edition of the four canonical gospels in one continuous narrative, he includes the final twelve verses of Mark. However, the problem with this evidence is that the Diatesseron only survives in much later Latin and Arabic versions that may not necessarily be accurate transcriptions of the original composition.64 While Justin, Irenaeus, and Tatian may have been aware of Mark 16:9–20, it seems likely that other patristic writers like Clement of Alexandria (c. A.D. 150–215) and Origen were not aware of these verses in their copies of Mark.65 Eusebius of Caesarea in response to a question from a friend named Marinus about an alleged discrepancy between Matthew and Mark on the exact timing of the resurrection reports that the concluding verses of Mark (vv. 9–20) are likely spurious and do not appear in the more “accurate” copies of the Gospel of Mark:66 The solution to this might be twofold. For, on the one hand, the one who rejects the passage itself [Mark 16:9–20], namely the pericope which says this, might say that it does not appear in all the copies of the Gospel according to Mark. At any rate, the accurate ones of the copies define the end of the history [i.e. Gospel] according to Mark with the words of the young man who appeared to the women and said to them, “Do not fear. You are seeking Jesus the Nazarene.” [Mark 16:6] In addition to these, it says, “And having heard this they fled, and they said nothing to anyone, for 61 Translation is my own. Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 3.10.5–6. 63 In the Vulgate Mark 16:19 reads: et Dominus quidem postquam locutus est eis adsumptus est in caelum et sedit a dextris Dei. 64 It seems most likely that Tatian originally composed his work in either Greek or Syriac. On his use of Mark 16:9–20 see Diatessaron 53–54 (= Ante-Nicene Fathers 9.125–29 [hereafter ANF] ). 65 Bruce M. Metzger and Bart D. Ehrman, The Text of the New Testament: Its Transmission, Corruption, and Restoration, 4th ed. (New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005), 322. 66 The question Eusebius was addressing was, how is it that Matthew appears to say that Jesus was raised “late on the Sabbath” (Matt. 28:1) when Mark says he was raised “early on the first day of the week” (Mark 16:2). Though Eusebius will not use this argument, the Greek adverb ὀψέ that is used in Matthew that is often translated as “late” can also be translated as “after.” See LSJ s.v. ὀψέ. Therefore, many translations of Matt. 28:1 read “after the Sabbath” and remove any apparent discrepancy. 62 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 23 they were afraid.” [Mark 16:8] For in this way the ending of the Gospel according to Mark is defined in nearly all the copies. The things that follow [Mark 16:9–20] are in some but not in all of the copies and may be spurious, this is particularly so because it is a contradiction to the witness of the other gospels.67 Later Jerome (c. A.D. 345–420) will basically echo Eusebius’ comments and similarly remark that the concluding verses of Mark were missing in most copies of the scriptures: “It [Mark 16: 9–20] appears rarely in copies of the Gospel [i.e. Mark], almost all Greek copies do not have this pericope at the end.”68 If we are inclined to agree with Eusbeius that the last twelve verses of Mark are spurious then we are left with Mark 12:8 as the conclusion to the Gospel: “And they went out quickly, and fled from the sepulchre; for they trembled and were amazed: neither said they any thing to any man; for they were afraid.” However, such an ending hardly seems fitting for a “gospel” (Mark 1:1) whose express purpose it is to declare the “good news” of Jesus’s resurrection. Even though text critically Mark 12:8 is currently the earliest attested ending for Mark’s gospel (Codex Sinaiticus [] & Codex Vaticanus [B]), because of its abruptness and the fact that it hardly acts as a coherent end to the Gospel various theories have been proposed against Mark 12:8 as the original conclusion. On this front one of the most widely held theories is that at some point very early on the original ending of Mark’s Gospel was lost and was subsequently copied and recopied without the conclusion (hence people like Eusebius and Jerome could state that most of the copies of the Gospel did not have anything after mark 16:8). Some have even speculated that it was lost when an early manuscript that contained the Gospel lost its final page.69 In defense of this theory proponents argue that Mark’s Gospel has a tendency toward narrative fulfillment, i.e. whenever something about Jesus’ ministry is promised or prophesied in the Gospel, Mark has a tendency to narrate its realization.70 For example, in Mark 7:29 when the Syrophonecian woman comes to Jesus and entreats him to heal her daughter and Jesus says, “the devil is gone out of thy daughter,” Mark does not leave it at 67 Eusebius, Questions to Marinus, 1.1. Translation is adapted from James A. Kelhoffer, “The Witness of Eusebius’ ad Marinum and Other Christian Writings to Text-Critical Debates concerning the Original Conclusion to Marks Gospel,” Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft und die Kunde der älteren Kirche 92 (2001): 84– 5. 68 Jerome, Epistle 120.3.Translation is my own. 69 Croy, The Mutilation of Mark’s Gospel. 70 Robert H. Gundry, Mark: A Commentary on his Apology for the Cross (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans, 1993), 1009. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 24 that and expect the reader to take Jesus’ word but completes the story by narrating how the women went home and found her daughter healed (Mark 7:30). Later in Mark 10:52a Jesus tells blind Bartimaeus, “Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole.” Again, Mark does not expect the reader to just believe Jesus’ words but in 10:52b narrates “And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.”71 Despite this general tendency toward narrative fulfillment in Mark there is one notable exception to this rule. In Mark 14:28 Jesus promises the disciples, “But after that I am risen, I will go before you into Galilee”; however, this prophecy never has narrative fulfillment if one takes Mark 16:8 as the concluding verse. Some have therefore used this verse (i.e. Mark 14:28) as evidence that Mark did not originally intend to end his Gospel at 16:8. The current ending for Mark’s Gospel found in the KJV, often referred to as the “longer” ending, is widely attested in most later manuscripts. While it is not without textual problems and even some who argue that Mark 16:8 was not the original ending also reject it, it cannot be dismissed offhand as inauthentic. If it is not the original ending to Mark then at the very least it probably contains some of the characteristics of the original ending (i.e. post resurrection appearances and a charge to spread the gospel). Attested Ancient Endings for the Gospel of Mark 1. 2. 3. 4. 71 60. 72 Ends with Mark 16:8: “And they went out quickly, and fled from the sepulchre; for they trembled and were amazed: neither said they any thing to any man; for they were afraid.” This ending is attested in both Codex Vaticanus (B) and Codex Sinaiticus (). The “shorter” or “intermediate” ending of Mark, as it is known, adds just one verse after Mark 16:8 that reads: “But they reported briefly to Peter and those with him all that they had been told. And after this Jesus himself sent out by means of them, from east to west, the sacred and imperishable proclamation of eternal salvation.” This ending is first attested in Codex Regius (L) of the eighth century and Codex Athos (Ψ) of the eighth or ninth century. 72 The “longer” ending of Mark (16:9–20) is the one contained in the KJV and is widely attested in many manuscripts, most notably Codex Alexandrinus (A), Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C), and Codex Bezae (D). A variant of the “Longer” ending is attested in Codex Freerianus (W). In this codex after Mark 16:14 and before v. 15 it adds the following: “And they excused themselves, saying, ‘This age of lawlessness and unbelief is under Satan, who does not allow the truth and power of God to prevail over the unclean things of the spirits. Therefore reveal your righteousness now’—thus they spoke to Christ. And Christ replied to them, ‘The term of years of Satan’s power has been fulfilled, but other terrible things draw near. And for those who have sinned I was delivered over to death, that For these and other examples of narrative fulfillment in Mark see Croy, The Mutilation of Mark’s Gospel, 57– However, these same codices also contain the “longer” ending of Mark. The vocabulary used in this ending is totally foreign to Mark and otherwise suggests that this ending is definitely non-Markan and a later interpolation. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 25 they may return to the truth and sin no more, that they may inherit the spiritual and imperishable glory of righteousness that is in heaven.’”73 12. KJV Luke 17:36 Two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. δῦο ἔσονται ἐν τῷ ἀγρῷ· ὁ εἴς παραληφθήσεται, καὶ ὁ ἕτερος ἀφεθήσεται. The present verse forms part of a narrative unit in Luke where Jesus discourses on the future coming of the kingdom in response to a question by the Pharisees (Luke 17:20–37). This narrative unit shares a number of parallels with a section of the Olivet Discourse given in Matthew 24:28–41. This verse is not included in almost every modern translation of the New Testament (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) because it does not appear in most ancient manuscripts: Codex Sinaiticus (), Codex Vaticanus (B), Codex Alexandrinus (A), and Codex Freerianus (W). Furthermore, it is absent from 75, a third-century papyrus codex from Egypt that contains large blocks of the Gospel of Luke and John.74 While Codex Bezae (D) does not contain the verse either, it will be inserted by later correctors of this bible. Though it is not impossible that v. 36 was accidently dropped as a result of homoioteleuton, since both v. 35 and v. 36 end with the word ἀφεθήσεται (“will be left”), the cumulative early manuscript weight against the authenticity of this verse is overwhelming. The most likely scenario is that at some point v. 36 was added to Luke 17 from Matthew 24:40, which contains a very similar saying, although the scribe harmonized it to the style of Luke 17:35: (Matthew 24:40) “Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.” It is worth pointing out that in Erasmus’ notes on this verse (see below) that he states that he could not find it in any of the Greek manuscripts he was consulting. While this verse is not present in the “Textus Receptus” it was included in the KJV through the influence of the Latin Vulgate. 75 Erasmus’ notes on this verse: Notes on Luke. From Chapter Seventeen “Two men in the field.” This portion is not present in Luke among the Greek [manuscripts], 76 although the divine Ambrose recollects fields. On the contrary in the copy belonging to 73 Translation taken from Metzger and Ehrman, The Text of the New Testament, 81. For a detailed description and analysis of 75 see Philip W. Comfort and David Barret (eds.), The Text of the Earliest New Testament Greek Manuscripts: New and Complete Transcriptions with Photographs (Wheaton, Il: Tyndale House Publishers Inc. 2001), 501–608 (see p. 554 for missing verse in this manuscript). 75 Comfort, New Testament Text and Translation Commentary, 221. 74 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 26 Paulinus there is no mention except concerning the bed. Theophlact read just two, concerning the bed and millstone; the third, concerning the field, it seems that this is taken from Matthew chapter 24.77 13. KJV Luke 22:43–44 43 And there appeared to him a messenger from heaven strengthening him; 44 and having been in agony, he was more earnestly praying, and his sweat became, as it were, great drops of blood falling upon the ground. 43 ὤφθη δὲ αὐτῷ ἄγγελος ἀπ’ οὐρανοῦ ἐνισχύων αὐτόν. 44καὶ γενόμενος ἐν ἀγωνίᾳ, ἐκτενέστερον προσηῦχετο. ἐγένετο δὲ ὁ ἱδρὼς αὐτοῦ ὡσεὶ θρόμβοι αἵματος καταβαίνοντες ἐπὶ τὴν γῆν. The present two verses form part of the Gethsemane narrative in Luke where Jesus prays to God when he is in great agony on the night before his crucifixion (Luke 22:39–47).78 In the RSV these verses are completed omitted. In the CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV these verse are included but may be placed in brackets depending on the version to highlight their dubious nature. These verses are absent from the following ancient manuscripts: Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Alexandrinus (A). Furthermore, these verses do not appear in the third-century papyrus manuscript 75 and similarly do not appear in another papyrus, 69, which dates to the middle of the third century and contains portions of Luke 20:41, 45–48, 58–61.79 Additionally, in some later manuscripts (post eighth century) these verses are marked with asterisks or obeli that signify their questionable nature and in other later manuscripts these verses have been placed after Matthew 26:39 or 26:45a, establishing that they were not necessarily fixed in Luke.80 On the other hand, Luke 22:44 is attested in a fragmentary parchment codex that contains portions of Matthew and Luke from Hermopolis Magna in Upper Egypt 76 Ambrose (of Milan) (c. A.D. 339–97) was one of the most famous Latin church fathers of the fourth century. Though he had grown up in a Christian family he was not baptized until immediately before his ordination as bishop of Milan in either 373 or 374. As bishop he would play an important role in the conversion of Augustine (c. A.D. 386). He wrote a number of treatises and left behind numerous letters. On Ambrose see ODCC 49–50. 77 Translation is my own and is based on Erasmus’ Latin text given in Reeve (ed.), Erasmus’ Annotations of the New Testament, 202. 78 In the Gospel of Luke he never actually mentions “Gethsemane” but only states that this occurred on the “Mount of Olives” (v. 19). “Gethsemane” is only mentioned in Matthew 26:36 and Mark 14:32. 79 69 is otherwise known as P.Oxy. XXIV 2383. The editor of the papyrus, E.G. Turner, noted that while vv. 43 and 44 are not actually on the papyrus the lacuna between v.41 and v.45 is too small to accommodate these verses. Therefore, in the judgment of Turner, this fragment did not contain vv. 43–44: “The Scribe’s large omission on the recto is easier to explain (ll. 3–4 nn.) if his exemplar did not in fact contain vv. 43–44, the incident of the appearance of the angel and of the bloody sweat.” (P.Oxy. XXIV p. 2). More recently see Kurt Aland, “Alter und Enstehung des D-Textes im Neuen Testament. Betrachtungen zu P69 und 0171,” in ed. Sebastià Janeras Miscellània papirològica Ramón Roca-Puig (Barcelona: Fundacio Salvador Vives Casajuana, 1987), 57–60; Thomas Wayment, “A New Transcription of P.Oxy. 2383 (69)” Novum Testamentum 50 (2008): 351–57. 80 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 151. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 27 that dates to the late third or early fourth century A.D. (0171 = PSI II 124).81 Likewise, a case should really be made that vv. 43–44 are attested in Codex Sinaiticus () since both * and 2 give the verses though 1 suppresses them.82 These verses are also included in Codex Beza (D). Given the disparate nature of the manuscript evidence it is difficult on this basis alone to determine whether or not these verses actually belonged to Luke. If one looks to the early patristic evidence the story of Jesus’ suffering and bleeding in the Garden of Gethsemane, which only appears in Luke, was known by a few early Christians, one of whom points out that the story was contained in the “memoirs” of the apostles (i.e. Gospels). On this front the most notable witness is Justin Martyr who comments on these very verses in his Dialogue with Trypho (c. A.D. 135), although he does not mention in which Gospel they were contained: “For in the memoirs which I say were drawn up by his apostles and those who followed them, [it is written] that ‘His sweat fell down like drops of blood’ while he was praying, and saying, ‘[Father] if it be possible, let this cup pass.’” 83 The phrase “His sweat fell down like drops of 84 blood” (ἱδρὼς ὡσεὶ θρόμβοι κατεχεῖτο) can only refer to Luke 22:44b. It is therefore clear that Justin was aware of this story and knew that it was in some “memoir” (i.e. Gospel). Justin is thus an early witness to the authenticity of these verses (although not necessarily in Luke). Irenaeus of Lyons is yet another early witness to the suffering of Jesus in Gethsemane as described in Luke 22:43–44. In a section of his Against Heresies where he criticizes Christian docetists who denied that Jesus actually assumed flesh and experienced (as God) a fully human existence, he remarks among other things (Jesus was at times hungry, weary, and pained) that he “sweated great drops of blood” 81 This parchment fragment contains Matthew 10:17–23, 25–32 and Luke 22:4 –50, 52–56, 61, 63–64. On this fragment see Philip W. Comfort and David P. Barrett (eds.), The Complete Text of the Earliest New Testament Manuscripts (Grand Rapids, Mich.: BakerBooks 1999), 635–41. This parchment codex is broken off right before v.44 so there is no way to know whether or not it also included v.43. 82 After Codex Sinaiticus was completed the first corrector (*) of the text who was a contemporary of the scribe who produced Luke (in fact he was the diorthetes (διορθωτής) who checked the manuscript before it left the scriptorium) added these verses because they were missing. Then, at some point later, these verses were removed by a later corrector (1) who was not a contemporary. Finally, these verses were then re-added by an even later corrector (2). Therefore, in my opinion, Codex Sinaiticus really ought to be considered a genuine witness for these verses. 83 Justin, Dialogue with Trypho, 103.8 (=ANF 1.251). Translation is my own and is based on Greek text taken from Miroslav Marcovich (ed.), Iustini Martyris Dialogus Cum Tryphone. Patristische Texte Und Studien, Band 47 (Berlin and New York: Walter de Gruyter, 1997), p. 249 (103.8). 84 While Justin does not specifically mention “blood” (αἷμα), as does Luke θρο,μβοι αι[ματος, θρόμβος usually carries the connotation of blood. See LSJ and BAG s.v. θρόμβος. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 28 (sudasset globos sanguinis).85 This confirms that Irenaeus was aware of the suffering in Gethsemane that is only described in Luke 22:43–44. Interestingly, as all of the examples Irenaues gives for Jesus’ humanity in this section of this treatise are scriptural proof texts, it is therefore evident that when Irenaeus mentions that Jesus “sweated great drops of blood” he was not talking about some oral story but was quoting a scriptural source.86 Besides Justin and Irenaeus there is one other early Christian writer (pre-fourth century) who was aware of the story that Jesus suffered in Gethsemane and makes a definitive reference to it. Hippolytus of Rome (c. A.D. 170–236) in a fragmentary exegetical commentary on Psalm 2 states that Jesus “sweated under the agonies and was strengthened by the angel” (καὶ ἀγωνιῶν ἱδροῖ καὶ ὑπ᾿ ἀγγέλου δυναμοῦται).87 From these references it is clear that Hippolytus was certainly aware of the tradition contained in Luke 22:43–44 as both references, “sweating under agonies” and being “strengthened by an angel,” only appear in Luke’s Gospel. Consequently, the account given in Luke 22:43-44 has a very ancient pedigree even if it is not necessarily born out in the disparate manuscript evidence.88 Highlighting the disparate nature of the manuscript evidence in antiquity, Hilary of Poitiers (c. A.D. 315–67/8) in his treatise On the Trinity (c. 356–360) states that because of the diversity in the manuscript evidence with respect to Luke 22:43–44 he was unsure whether it was indeed authentic or was a later interpolation: We must not ignore the fact that in several manuscripts, both Latin and Greek, nothing is written of the angel coming or of the bloody sweat. It is therefore ambiguous, whether this is an omission, where it is wanting, or an interpolation, where it is found (for the disparity of the copies 85 Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 3.22.2 (=ANF 1.454). The accompanying Greek in this section reads: ἵδρωσε θρόμβους αἵματος. 86 Elsewhere in his writings Irenaeus seems to allude to Luke 22:43–44. See Epid. 75 (=Proof of the Apostolic Preaching. Ancient Christian Writers no. 16. Trans. Joseph P. Smith. (New York: Newman Press, 1952), p. 96. 87 Greek text taken from G. Nath. Bonwetsch and Hans Achelis (eds.), Hippolytus Werke: Erster Band Exegetische Und Homiletische Schriften (Leizig: J.C. Hinrichs’sche Buchhandlung, 1897), p. 146. 88 In addition to Justin, Irenaeus and Hippolytus there might be one other Christian writer of relatively early date (pre-fourth century) who also makes reference to the story of Jesus’ suffering in Gethsemane. In a fragmentary commentary on Luke 22:42f, which has been attributed to Dionysius of Alexandria (d. c. A.D. 264), he discusses both Luke 22:43 and 44 as they currently appear. Even though the author of this commentary takes the reference to Jesus’ sweating blood in v. 44 as metaphorical, if the author is indeed Dionysius of Alexandria, it would be very significant since it would securely establish that in the third century there was evidence of these verses in Luke. On this commentary see Charles Feltoe, The Letters and other Remains of Dionysius of Alexandria (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1904), 229–31. For Dionysius’ exegesis of these verses see pp. 241–45. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 29 leaves the question uncertain to us), let not the heretics flatter themselves that herein lies a confirmation of his weakness, that he needed the help of an angel. 89 Jerome also expresses the same sentiments in his polemical work Against the Pelagians (c. 415): In some copies, Greek as well as Latin, the following words are found written by Luke: ‘There appeared to him an angel from heaven strengthening him’ (referring, undoubtedly, to the Lord, Savior). ‘And falling into an agony, he prayed more earnestly. And his sweat became as drops of blood running down to the ground.’90 If one were to assume that Luke 22:43–44 was originally not part of the gospel and is a later accretion, the question that must naturally be answered is why someone would be inclined to add these verses. Answering this question is rather difficult because there is no readily explainable reason, at least in my opinion, for adding these verses. While Bruce Metzger thinks these two verses were indeed added to Luke and are not original he is not altogether clear on the reasons behind their insertion besides suggesting that they were probably “added from an early source, oral or written, of extra-canonical traditions concerning the life and passion of Jesus.” 91 On the other hand, if we were to suppose that these two verses were original and were then omitted there is at least one readily available reason to explain their removal. Here I am not talking about textual issues such as homoioteleuton or homoioarcton that could explain their accidental loss but rather reasons that could account for their deliberate omission. I think it not unlikely that these verses were deliberately removed because some Christian scribe(s) or copyist(s) felt they were potentially embarrassing as they could be construed as depicting a “weak” Jesus on the eve of his death. In Raymond Brown’s detailed work, The Death of the Messiah. From Gethsemane to the Grave: A Commentary on the Passion Narratives in the four Gospels, he argues that there is reason to think that Luke 22:43–44 was originally a part of Luke’s Gospel but that it could have been deliberately omitted by certain Christian copiests who felt it portrayed a weak Jesus as it ostensibly contradicted Greco-Roman expectations of courage and 89 Hilary, On the Trinity, 10.41.1. Translation is my own and is based on Latin text taken from PL X col. 375. Jerome, Against the Pelagians, 2.16. Translation is my own and is based on Latin text given in Latin text taken from PL XXIII col. 578. 91 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 151. 90 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) 92 bravery before death. TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 30 Interestingly, every ancient anti-Christian writer from the first four centuries whose works are still extant criticized the actions of Jesus portrayed in Luke 22:42–45 because they felt that Jesus was fearful of death and did not show equanimity or true philosophical courage in the face of 93 death. Going in reverse order chronologically the emperor Julian “the apostate” (c. A.D. 331–363) in his work entitled Against the Galileans, written c. A.D. 362, severely reproaches Jesus because of his alleged weaknesses in Gethsemane as detailed in Luke 22:42–45: Furthermore, Jesus prays in such language as would be used by a pitiful wretch who cannot bear misfortune with serenity, and though he is a god is reassured by an angel? (Luke 22:43). And who told you, Luke, the story of the angel, if indeed this ever happened? For those who were there when he prayed could not see the angel; for they were asleep. Therefore when Jesus came from his prayer he found them fallen asleep from their grief he said: “Why do you sleep? Arise and pray,” and so forth. And then, “and while he was yet speaking, behold a multitude and Judas (Luke 22:46-47).” That is, why John did not write about the angel, for neither did he see it.”94 From the brief extract it is clear that in Julian’s estimation Jesus lacked the proper courage before death and so argues that as such he could not possibly have been “a god” as the “Galileans” (i.e. Christians) declared.95 92 Raymond Brown, The Death of the Messiah. From Gethsemane to the Grave: A Commentary on the Passion Narratives in the four Gospels (New York: Doubleday, 1994), 1.183-85. A little later on p. 185 Brown writes: “While clearly the evidence available does not settle the issue of whether Luke wrote 22:43-44, in my judgment the overall import of the types of evidence or reasoning discussed above favors Lucan authorship; and henceforth I shall write as if Luke were the author.” 93 In Greco-Roman society Socrates was often held up as the ideal model for the ways persons ought to act and speak in the face of immanent death since he manifested, at least according to Plato’s Apology, virtue, equanimity, and courage when he was condemned by the Athenian boule. On Greco-Roman ideals for death see Jan Willen van Henten and Friedrich Avemarie, Martyrdom and Noble Death: Selected Texts from Graeco-Roman, Jewish and Christian Antiquity (London: Routledge, 2002), 9–41. 94 Translation adapted from Wilmer C. Wright, Julian III (LCL 157), 431 (Frag. 4); cf. R. Joseph Hoffman (trans. and ed.), Julian’s Against the Galileans (Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 2004), 144 (Frag. 7). 95 It is worth pointing out here that since Julian mentions the “angel” he is clearly aware of Luke 22:43 in the manuscript tradition he was using. On this point see T. Baarda, “Luke 22:42–47a, The Emperor Julian as a Witness to the Text of Luke” Novum Testamentum 30/4 (1988): 289–96. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 31 Almost a century earlier the neoplatonic philosopher Porphyry (c. A.D. 234–305), in his work entitled Against the Christians (c. A.D. 270), similarly criticized Jesus’ actions and words in Gethsemane: When [Jesus] himself agonizes in anticipation of his death he prays that his suffering might be eliminated (Luke 22:42; Matthew26:39); and he says to his companions, “Wait, pray, so that temptation may not overcome you.” (Luke 22:40, 46; Matthew 26:41) Surely these sayings are not worthy of a son of God, nor even a wise man who despises death.96 Finally, there is the evidence from Celsus (c. A.D. II), who composed an extended treatise against Christianity in the latter part of the second century entitled True Doctrine (c. A.D. 178).97 In this treatise Celsus also criticized Jesus’ actions and words in Gethsemane: “Why then does he [Jesus] utter loud laments and wailings, and pray that he may avoid the fear of death, saying something like this, “O Father, if this cup could pass me by? (Luke 22:42; Matthew26:39)”.98 However, this is not the only thing Celsus says here, if one continues with his treatise he follows up his criticism of Jesus in Gethsemane with the following accusation, made against Christians generally, which is very significant for the present discussion on the status of Luke 22:43–44: After these things he [Celsus] says, “some believers, as though from a drinking bout, go so far as to oppose themselves and alter the original text of the gospel three or four or several times over, and they change its character to enable them to deny difficulties in face of criticism.” What is significant is that right after Celsus criticizes Jesus in Gethsemane he makes the charge that certain Christians were altering the “original text of the gospel three or four or several times over” in order to allow them “to deny difficulties in face of criticism.” The implication here is that Celsus was aware that the story of Jesus in Gethsemane was being deleted or altered in the Gospels because certain Christians felt it was potentially embarrassing. So, “to enable them to deny difficulties in face of criticism,” specifically Greco-Roman criticism of Jesus’ action in the face of death, it was easier to simply 96 Translation adapted from R. Joseph Hoffman, Porphyry’s Against the Christians: The Literary Remains (Amherst, NY: Prometheus Books, 1994) 40. 97 On the dating of Celsus’ treatise see H.U. Rosenbaum, “Zur Datierung von Celsus’ ΑΛΗΘΗΣ ΛΟΓΟΣ,” Vigilae christianae 26 (1972):102–111; Jeffrey Hargis, Against the Christians: The Rise of Early Anti-Christian Polemic (New York: Peter Lang Publishing Inc., 1999), 20–24. 98 Origen, Against Celsus, 2.24. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 32 expunge this story. I therefore believe that this could explain why the account contained in Luke 22:43– 44 has such a disparate history in the manuscript record. Besides dropping the Gethsemane account in order to deflect Greco-Roman criticism it has recently been argued that it may have been dropped by certain Christian groups, such as the Marcionites in their copy of the Gospel of Luke, because it portrayed a side of Jesus that was too weak and subordinate to the Father (the Demiurge to Marcionites).99 Similarly, as Arians will later argue from Luke 22:42–44 that Jesus was not God, but was a man with all the attendant human frailties, it may be wondered whether some Christians might have preferred to get rid of these verses if they felt they were already somewhat dubious and they were being used by heretics to advance their theological arguments.100 Interestingly, in the quote preserved by Hilary of Poitiers (above) he notes that whatever the true nature of the Luke 22:43–44, “let not the heretics flatter themselves that herein lies a confirmation of his weakness, that he needed the help of an angel.” While I am persuaded that a compelling, albeit circumstantial, case can be made that Luke 22:43–44 was original and was later deliberately omitted from the Gospel by scribes or copyists who felt that it contained a potentially embarrassing account about Jesus, not all scholars are persuaded by this argument. In particular, Bart Ehrman and Mark Plunket in a full length article devoted to Luke 22:43–44 argued that these verses were not original but were later interpolated into Luke.101 Nevertheless, while they doubt the authenticity of these verses in their conclusion they do acknowledge that it is not a straightforward matter: “No one argument yields a definitive solution. Rather, the cumulative force of a group of arguments must be assessed, and even then the critic is left with a probability-judgment.” 102 14. KJV Luke 23:17 For of necessity he must release one unto them at the feast. 99 ἀνάγκην δὲ εἶχεν ἀπολῦειν αὐτοῖς κατὰ ἑορτὴν ἕνα. Claire Clivaz, “The Angel and the Sweat Like ‘Drops of Blood’ (Lk 22:43-44): 69 and f13” Harvard Theological Review 98.4 (2005): 429–32. 100 Arius apud Epiphanius, Refutation of All Heresies, 16.19.4. 101 Bart D. Ehrman and Mark A. Plunkett, “The Angel and the Agony: The Textual Problem of Luke 22:43–44,” Catholic Biblical Quarterly 45 (1983): 401–16. 102 Ehrman and Plunkett, “The Angel and the Agony,” 416. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 33 This verse forms part of a narrative unit in Luke where Jesus is condemned by Pilate to crucifixion, in lieu of Barabbas, based on the cries of the “chief priests” and “rulers of the people” (Luke 23:13–25). Within this narrative unit v. 17 essentially functions as a parenthetical aside that explains to the reader that at Passover there was a tradition that a prisoner could be released to the people. In most modern translations of the New Testament this verse is omitted (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) since it does not appear in the following ancient manuscripts: Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Alexandrinus (A); and 75. This verse is attested in Codex Sinaiticus () and Codex 103 Freerianus (W). In Codex Bezae (D) this verse is transposed and placed after Luke 23:19. While this verse could have accidently dropped out as a result of homoioarcton, as v. 18 begins with ἀνέκραξαν (“they cried out”) and the present verse begins with ἀνάγκην (“necessity”), this explanation cannot adequately explain its widespread omission in such a number of early manuscripts. A more likely explanation is that this verse was added to Luke as a scribal interpolation to help explain the crowd’s request that Pilate release Barabbas in place of Jesus (v. 18) and was adapted from either Matthew 27:15 or Mark 15:6 that contain very similar verses: (Matthew 27:15) “Now at that feast the governor was wont to release unto the people a prisoner, whom they would.”; (Mark 15:6) “Now at that feast he released unto them one prisoner, whomsoever they desired.” Furthermore, as one can read smoothly from Luke 23:16 directly to 23:18 without any interruption, it would seem to suggest that v. 17 was a later addition. 15. KJV John 5:4 For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had. ἄγγελος γὰρ κατὰ καιρὸν κατέβαινεν ἐν τῇ κολυμβήθρᾳ, καὶ ἐτάρασσεν τὸ ὔδωρ· ὁ οὖν πρῶτος ἐμβὰς μετὰ τὴν ταραχὴν τοῦ ὕδατος, ὑγιὴς ἐγίνετο, ᾡ ͂ δήποτε κατείχετο νοσήματι. The present verse forms part of the descriptive background to the narrative unit where Jesus heals a man at the pool of Bethesda (John 5:1–18). In this story it is reported that the man had been infirm some thirty-eight years whereupon Jesus healed him and commanded him to take up his bed and walk (v. 8). This command will subsequently provoke a controversy about the Sabbath with “the Jews” since they will accuse Jesus of sanctioning work (bed carrying) on this day (vv. 16–18). As a preamble to this story John 103 Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) is defective in this part of the manuscript so it is not possible to determine whether or not it contained this verse. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 34 describes the pool of Bethesda and reports how crowds congregated around the pool waiting for the waters to be troubled. The present verse functions as an ostensible explanation for the “troubling” of the waters and their alleged therapeutic powers by claiming that it was the work of an angel. In most modern translations of the New Testament this verse is omitted (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) because it is absent from a number of ancient manuscripts: 104 Codex Sinaiticus (); Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Freerianus (W) Codex Beza (D); 75 and 66. In Codex Alexandrinus (A) and Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) the passage was not originally included but was later inserted by a corrector. Additionally, in a number of later manuscripts this verse is marked by either asterisks or obeli that signify its questionable nature.105 By the ninth century this verse will appear in most Greek manuscripts. Turning to the Greek patristic evidence there is very little evidence for this verse until the later part of the fourth century. In Tatians’ Diatesseron he may have been aware of this verse as it is included in some much later Latin and Arabic copies of this work.106 Aside from the reference in Tatian, which is less than certain, the first secure reference to the story of the angel troubling the waters at Bethesda can be found in the Latin Father Tertullian (c. A.D. 160–225). In his treatise Concerning Baptism (c. A.D. 205) Tertullian makes reference to the account of the angel at Bethesda (without explicitly mentioning the Gospel of John) in the context of comparing Christian baptism with non-Christian rituals of cleansing and how in the Christian case the Holy Spirit, via an angel, might actually sanctify the waters of baptism: “If it is thought strange that an angel should do things to waters, there has already occurred a precedent of that which was to be. An angel used to do things when he moved the Pool of Bethesda.”107 104 Except for Codex Freerianus (W) and Codex Bezae (D), in these witnesses v. 4 it is omitted along with John 5:3b (waiting for the moving of the waters). 66 is a papyrus codex that contains large sections of the Gospel of John (1:1–6:11; 6:35–14:26; 2 –30 ;15:2–26; 16:2–4, 6–7;16:10–20:20, 22–23;20:25–21:9, 12, 17) and dates to either the end of the second century or beginning of the third century. On this codex see Philip W. Comfort and David Barrett (eds.), The Text of the Earliest New Testament Greek Manuscripts, 376–468. 105 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 179. 106 On his use of John 5:4 see Diatessaron 22:12 (=ANF 9.77). 107 Tertullian, On Baptism, 5.5 (=ANF 3.671). Translation adapted from Evans, Tertullian’s Homily on Baptism, 15. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 35 After Tertullian this story is not mentioned again by a church father until the later part of the fourth century. 108 Notwithstanding the evidence of Tertullian, which confirms that certain Christians certainly knew of this story by the third century, this reference on its own cannot prove that John 5:4 is authentic in light of the absolute overwhelming manuscript support against it.109 At best it establishes that by the early third century certain Latin copies of the Gospel of John appeared to have contained this story. On internal grounds defenders of the authenticity of this verse, which are very few, point out that it is needed (along with 3b) to make sense of v. 7 where the man explains to Jesus that no one is present to put him in the pool:110 “The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.” While v. 4 does help clarify v. 7 it is not absolutely necessary. Furthermore, it runs against the text critical principal of lectio difficilior potior (“more difficult reading is better”). Put simply, a more difficult, perhaps ambiguous, reading is more likely to be older than another reading that may be expanded and clearer since it is more likely that a scribe or copyist would be more inclined to add a verse for clarification than they would be to remove a verse in an otherwise straightforward narrative. 111 In the present narrative it is more likely that someone would add v. 4 (to help clarify v. 7) than to remove it. Furthermore, one additional item that speaks against the authenticity of v. 4 on internals grounds is that it contains certain words and linguistic constructions that are otherwise foreign to the Gospel of John and suggest a different hand than the writer of this Gospel.112 Therefore, when one considers all the evidence it seems very likely that this verse is not 113 authentic and is a later interpolation. 108 For the later patristic evidence for this verse see Gordon D. Fee, “On the Inauthenticity of John 5:3b-4” Evangelical Quarterly 54.4 (Oct.–Dec. 1982): 214–15. 109 It needs to be kept in mind here that Tertullian does not actually cite John and the phrasing of his reference is by no means a quote or citation but more appropriately an allusion: piscinam Bethsaidam angelus interveniens commovebat. All the same, as John 5 is the only chapter in the Gospels that mentions the pool of Bethesda, Tertullian almost certainly had this Gospel in mind with this reference. 110 Z. Hodges, “The Angel at Bethesda–John 5:4” Bibliotheca sacra 136 (1979): 25–39. 111 All the same, some restraint needs to be exercised before invoking this text critical principle. If a passage makes absolutely no sense whatsoever one should not necessarily suppose that it must be the older reading, when compared to another rendering of the passage that might make more sense, as one should always assume that that the author of any text is seeking from the start to be understood and make sense. 112 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 179; Gordon D. Fee, “On the Inauthenticity of John 5:3b–4” 210–13. 113 It is worthwhile here to mention Bruce R. McConkie’s comments on this verse in Doctrinal New Testament Commentary 1.88: “No doubt the pool of Bethesda was a mineral spring whose waters had some curative virtue. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 36 16. KJV John 7:53–8:11114 “53 And every man went unto his own house. 1 Jesus went unto the mount of Olives. 2 And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them. 3 And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, 4 They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. 5 Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? 6 This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. 7 So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. 8 And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. 9 And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. 10 When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? 11 She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” 53 καὶ ἐπορεύθη ἕκαστος εἰς τὸν οἶκον αὐτοῦ, 1 Ἰησοῦς δὲ ἐπορεύθη εἰς τὸ ὄρος τῶν ἐλαιῶν. 2 ὄρθρου δὲ πάλιν παρεγένετο εἰς τὸ ἱερόν, καὶ πᾶς ὁ λαὸς ἤρχετο πρὸς αὐτόν, καὶ καθίσας ἐδίδασκεν αὐτούς. 3 ἄγουσιν δὲ οἱ γραμματεῖς καὶ οἱ Φαρισαῖοι πρὸς αὐτὸν γυναῖκα ἐν μοιχείᾳ κατειλημμένην, καὶ στήσαντες αὐτὴν ἐν μέσῳ 4 λέγουσιν αὐτῷ, Διδάσκαλε, αὕτη ἡ γυνὴ κατειλήφθη ἐπ’ αὐτοφώρῳ μοιχευομένη· 5 ἐν δὲ τῷ νόμῳ ἡμῖν Μωϋσῆς ἐνετείλατο τὰς τοιαύτας λιθοβολεῖσθαι· σὺ οὖν τί λέγεις; 6 τοῦτο δὲ ἔλεγον πειράζοντες αὐτόν, ἵνα ἔχωσι κατηγορεῖν αὐτοῦ. ὁ δὲ Ἰησοῦς κάτω κύψας τῷ δακτύλῳ ἔγραφεν εἰς τὴν γῆν, μὴ προσποιούμενος. 7 ὡς δὲ ἐπέμενον ἐρωτῶντες αὐτόν, ἀνεκύψας εἶπε αὐτοῖς, ὁ ἀναμάρτητος ὑμῶν, πρῶτος τὸν λίθον ἐπ’ αὐτῇ βαλέτω· 8 καὶ πάλιν κάτω κύψας ἔγραφεν εἰς τὴν γῆν. 9 οἱ δὲ ἀκούσαντες, καὶ ὑπὸ τῆς συνειδήσεως ἐλεγχόμενοι, ἐξήρχοντο εἷς καθ’ εἷς ἀρξάμενοι ἀπὸ τῶν πρεσβυτέρων ἕως τῶν ἐσχάτων, καὶ κατελείφθη μόνος ὁ Ἰησοῦς, καὶ ἡ γυνὴ ἐν μέσῳ ἑστῶσα. 10 ἀνακύψας δὲ ὁ Ἰησοῦς, καὶ μηδένα θεασάμενος πλὴν τὴς γυναικός, εἶπεν αὐτῇ, γύναι, ποῦ εἰσιν ἐκεῖνοι οἱ κατήγοροί σου; οὐδείς σε κατέκρινεν; 11 ἡ δὲ εἶπεν, Οὐδείς, κύριε. εἶπεν δὲ αὐτῇ ὁ Ἰησοῦς, οὐδὲ ἐγώ σε κατακρίνω, πορεύου καὶ μηκέτι ἁμάρτανε. These verses form the basis of the famous story of the Woman Caught in Adultery (esp. John 8:3–11). In this story “the scribes and Pharisees” (v. 3) brought a woman before Jesus who was allegedly caught in the very act of committing adultery and questioned him about the appropriate punishment, which according to the Law of Moses was stoning (see. Deut. 22:21–24). Jesus does not immediately reply to this question but takes some time before he answers (v. 6). He will then respond by stating: “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her” (v. 7). At this the accusers gradually depart, “being convicted of their own conscience” (v. 9), and leave Jesus alone with the woman. The pericope But any notion that an angel came down and troubled the waters, so that the first person thereafter entering the water would be healed was pure superstition. Healing miracles are not wrought in such manner. If we had the account as John originally wrote it, it would probably contain an explanation that the part supposedly played by an angel was merely a superstitious legend comparable to some that have since been devised by some churches of Christendom.” 114 The literature on the authenticity/inauthenticity of this story in the Gospel of John is fairly extensive. For a cursory bibliography of the literature see Daniel B. Wallace, “Reconsidering ‘The Story of Jesus and the Adulteress Reconsidered,’” New Testament Studies 39 (1993): 290 n. 2. For an LDS treatment see Thomas Wayment, “The Woman Taken in Adultery and the History of the New Testament Canon.” In Richard Neitzel Holzapfel and Thomas A. Wayment (eds.), The Life and Teaching of Jesus Christ: From the Transfiguration through the Triumphal Entry (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2006), 372–97. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 37 comes to a close with Jesus exhorting the woman to “go, and sin no more” (v. 11). This is the only story of this type preserved in any of the Gospels. In most modern translations these verses are either written in italics or are placed in brackets and are usually accompanied by an explanatory note that explains their tenuous character. John 7: 53–8:11 does not appear in any of the most important ancient manuscripts: Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Sinaiticus(); Codex Freerianus (W); 66 and 75 . Both Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) and Codex Alexandrinus (A) are damaged in this section of the Gospel of John so it is impossible to determine whether or not they contained this story; however, a measurement of the missing sections suggests that there would not be sufficient room to include this passage in either manuscript. Additionally, in a number of later manuscripts this passage is marked by either asterisks or obeli that signify its questionable nature.115 Furthermore, in some manuscripts it is placed after John 7:36 or 7:44 or even at the end of the Gospel (after John 21:25) or after Luke 21:38, which would otherwise suggest that this story was a later interpolation.116 In its present location it is first attested in Codex Bezae (D).117 Given the nature of the manuscript and papyrological evidence it seems almost certain this pericope was not originally a part of John’s Gospel. A convincing argument cannot be made that this story was dropped from the Gospel either unintentionally or intentionally. While it is possible that under certain circumstances a verse, or even two, might be unintentionally lost, it is less likely that a copyist or scribe could accidently omit 12 whole verses. Furthermore, given the wide distribution of the manuscript evidence one would have to assume that for whatever reason these same verses kept being accidently dropped by a number of different copyist and scribes working independently of each other at different times and in different places. It seems far more likely that it is missing from so many manuscripts because it is not original. Though some have speculated that perhaps the story was intentionally omitted from John’s Gospel because it could portray Jesus as too lenient on adultery, this theory does not adequately take account of all the evidence. Unlike 115 Gary M. Burge, “A specific Problem in the New Testament Text and Canon: The Woman Caught in Adultery,” Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 27.2 (1984): 142. 116 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 188. 117 Before the eighth century this is the only manuscript that contains this story. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 38 Luke 22:43–44, where a circumstantial case can be made for the deliberate omission of these verses, no such case can be made for the present verses. There is no evidence that any ancient scribes or copyists felt compelled to deliberately omit these verses due to “moral prudence” as Augustine would later argue.118 If this were the case at least one early manuscript ought to contain this story, as is the case with manuscript 0171 (= PSI II 124) and Luke 22:43–44, but as it currently stands not a single early manuscript before Codex Bezae (D) contains these verses. Turning to the patristic literature, in its current form this story is unknown until the later part of the fourth century. Origen in his Commentary on John skips directly from John 7:52 to 8:12 without ever discussing the story. It is therefore evident that none of the third-century copies of John known to Origen contained this story. Similarly, both Tertullian and Cyprian (d. A.D. 258) show no awareness of this story, yet both would have hardly passed it by since both issued ecclesiastical instructions concerning adultery (Tertullian, On Modesty [c. 220]; Cyprian, Letter 55 [c. 250]). In the Greek East the first church father to unambiguously mention the story in the Gospel of John is Euthymius Zigabenus (early 12th cent.) who notes that it was clearly an insertion to the Gospel.119 In the Latin West the story is first mentioned at the end of the fourth century by Ambrose and then Jerome. Interestingly, Jerome remarks that the story could be found in many Greek and Latin copies of the scriptures: “In the Gospel according to John there is found in many Greek as well as Latin copies the story of the adulteress who was accused before the Lord.”120 While the story seems to be unknown to patristic writers until the end of the fourth century, it is possible that a form of the story could have been known much earlier. In the Ecclesiastical History (c. 320) of Eusebius of Caesarea he quotes a story known to him through the writings of Papias of Hierapolis (c. A.D. 60–130), an early bishop of Hierapolis in western Asia Minor. Papias was apparently aware of an early story that a woman accused with many sins was brought before Jesus: “The same person [Papias] 118 Augustine, On Adulterous Marriages, 2.6–7. Cf. Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 189. 119 Edwyn Clement Hoskyns, The Fourth Gospel (London: Faber and Faber, 1940), 563. Euthymius states that “accurate copies” either omit the story or mark it with obeli. 120 Jerome, Against the Pelagians Pelag. 2.17. Translation is my own and is based on Latin text given in PL XXIII col. 579. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 39 uses proofs from the First Epistle of John, and from the Epistle of Peter in like manner. And he also gives another story of a woman who was accused of many sins before the Lord, which is found in the Gospel according to the Hebrews” (emphasis added).121 While this reference is brief and the description incomplete it seems that Papias knew of some story that circulated among early Christians that shared at least some parallels with the story of the woman taken in adultery. 122 The comment, which is made by Eusebius and not Papias, about the Gospel according to the Hebrews containing the story is difficult to assess since this Gospel is no longer extant.123 Additionally, as it is not clear that Eusebius is aware of the story of the woman taken in adultery in John 7:53–8:11 it is difficult to know for sure how he was interpreting the statement from Papias. Was there another story in circulation about a different woman being accused of sins before Jesus? Another relatively early source that contains a potential reference to this story can be found in the Didascalia Apostolorum or the Teachings of the Apostles. While this source purports to have been written by the Apostles at the time of the Jerusalem Council (Acts 15), modern scholarship has shown that this church order was actually composed sometime in the third century.124 In the section of this treatise where bishops are instructed to mercifully receive penitent sinners an illustrative story is given, which would otherwise suggest that the author(s) of this treatise where aware of a story similar to what is found in John 7:53–8:11: And when the elders had set another woman which had sinned before Him [Jesus], and had left the sentence to Him, and were gone out, our Lord, the Searcher of the hearts, inquiring of her whether the elders had condemned her, and being answered “No,” He said unto her: “Go thy way 121 Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 3.39.17. Sometimes cited as Papias Frag. 3.17. See Michael W. Holmes (ed. and Trans.), The Apostolic Fathers: Greek Texts and English Translations (3rd Ed.) (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Academic, 2007), 740–41. Translation is my own. 122 While the tenth-century world chronicler Agapius of Hierapolis reports that Papias actually referred to the story of the woman taken in adultery that is found in John, this is probably his own inference and based on the very late date of Agapius his claim should not necessarily be taken at face value. See Holmes, The Apostolic Fathers, 760–61. 123 The Gospel according to the Hebrews is believed to have been an early second-century gospel produced in Alexandria and used principally by Jewish Christians. It is known primarily from scattered references by later Christian Authors. The name Gospel according to the Hebrews is not its actual name but merely the name used by outsiders to identify this text. See Bart Ehrman, Lost Scriptures: Books that did not make it into the New Testament (Oxford: Oxford University Press: 2003), 15–6. 124 ODCC 479. Though this text was originally written in Greek it is only extant in Syriac. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 40 therefore, for neither do I condemn thee.” This Jesus, O ye bishops, our Saviour, our King, and our God, ought to be set before you as your pattern.125 While the example cited in the Didascalia Apostolorum shares some definite parallels with John 7:53 8:11, there are also some clear differences. Jesus’ response to the woman in the Didascalia Apostolorum, “Go thy way therefore, for neither do I condemn thee,” is remarkably similar to what is found in John 8:11, “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” On the other hand, the Johannine version implies that the woman was actually guilty of adultery whereas the example cited in the Didascalia Apostolorum supposes that that woman was actually innocent of whatever charges were being leveled against her (it is not clear that it was necessarily adultery). Furthermore, in the Johannine version it is the “scribes and Pharisees” whereas it is “the Elders” in the Didascalia Apostolorum, and in the former the accusers leave as a result of a guilty conscience whereas in the latter they leave voluntarily so that Jesus can judge independently. Finally, there is the evidence of Didymus the Blind (c. A.D. 318–98), the famous biblical exegete from Alexandria. In his Commentary on Ecclesiastes he relates a very similar story to what is found in John 7:53–8:11 about a woman who was brought before Jesus because she had been condemned of a certain sin: We find, therefore, in certain gospels [the following story]. A woman, it says, was condemned by the Jews for a sin and was being sent to be stoned in the place where it was customary to happen. The savior, it says, when he saw her and observed that they were ready to stone her, said to those who were about to cast stones, ‘He who has not sinned, let him take up a stone and cast it.’ If anyone is conscious in himself not to have sinned, let him take up a stone and smite her. And no one dared. Since they knew in themselves and perceived that they themselves were guilty in some things, they did not dare to strike her.126 The story, as related by Didymus, shares certain definite parallels with the account of John 7:53–8:11; the most notable parallel being Jesus’ words to those about to stone the woman (“He who has not sinned, let him take up a stone and cast it”) that are remarkably similar to what is found in John 8:7 (“He that is 125 Const. ap. 2.24. Translation taken from ANF 7.408. As the Didascalia Apostolorum is embodied in the first six books of the fourth-century Apostolic Constitutions I have selected this work for reference. 126 Didymus, Commentary on Ecclesiastes, 223.6b–13a. Translation taken from Bart D. Ehrman, “Jesus and the Adultress,” New Testament Studies 34 (1988): 25. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 41 without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.”). However, aside from this and a few other parallels there are also some important differences. The charge of adultery is never explicitly stated by Didymus and it should not be automatically assumed since other crimes also merited stoning according to the Law of Moses.127 Furthermore, the whole context of the story is framed differently from how it appears in John. In John the “scribes and Pharisees” seek to entrap Jesus and therefore bring the woman to him and solicit his opinion on the condemnation whereas here the “the Jews” never seek out his judgment but Jesus shows the initiative and intervenes on the woman’s behalf. Finally, one other feature from the reference in Didymus that deserves some attention is his statement that it could be found “in certain gospels” (ἔν τισιν εὐαγγελίοις). Though it might be tempting to suppose that Didymus must have had the Gospel of John in mind this cannot be automatically assumed given the clear differences between the accounts. Furthermore, in light of Eusebius’ earlier statement that the Gospel according to the Hebrews contained some similar story it may be wondered whether Didymus might have been referring to this source. In any event, the patristic evidence demonstrates that at least by the second century certain Christians were aware of some story, which may indeed be authentic, about a condemned woman who appeared before Jesus and whose punishment was subsequently nullified or mitigated as a result of the encounter. As the story currently appears in John it cannot be deemed original to the Gospel. The ancient manuscript evidence speaks against it originally being a part of John and on internal grounds the story contains certain literary features that otherwise suggest non-Johannine authorship.128 Likewise, as earlier versions of this story are somewhat different one cannot suppose that its current form represents the original version. Perhaps, then, the story was modified into its present form and added to John at some point in the fourth or fifth century because its core had an ancient pedigree and it was an attractive story since it appealed to mercy over punishment. 17. KJV Acts 8:37 And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I 127 εἰπε δὲ ὁ Φίλιππος, εἰ πιστεύεις ἐξ ὅλης τὴς καρδίας, ἔξεστιν. ἀποκριθεὶς δὲ εἷπε, πιστεύω τὸν Breaking the Sabbath (Num. 15:33–36); Idolatry (Deut. 17:2–5); Rebellious children (Deut. 21:19–21). In terms of a linguistic and/or literary study of John 7:53–8:11 is appears non-Johannine. See Wallace, “Reconsidering ‘The Story of Jesus and the Adulteress Reconsidered,’” 290–96. 128 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 42 ὑιὸν τοῦ Θεοῦ ἐιναι τὸν Ἰησοῦν Χριστόν. The present verse forms part of the narrative unit in Acts 8 where Philip, one of the seven chosen by the apostles to help with the ministry (Acts 6:5), travels to Gaza and converts a eunuch from Ethiopia whom he meets along the way (Acts 8:26–40). After Philip briefly preaches about Jesus (v. 35) the eunuch asks him if he can receive baptism (v. 36). Philip replies (v. 37) that he can receive baptism as long as he believes with all his “heart” (v.37a) upon which the eunuch replies in the affirmative (v.37b) and is then baptized (v.38). In most modern translations of the New Testament (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) this verse is omitted because it does not appear in a number of ancient manuscripts: Codex Sinaiticus (); Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Alexandrinus (A); and 45.129 The earliest attestation of this verse in a codex is not until the sixth century in Codex Laudianus (E) after which it will become more common and by the ninth century it will appear with some frequency in various Greek miniscules.130 In light of the strong manuscript evidence, as well as the fact that there is no readily available explanation to account for the accidental omission of v. 37, it seems rather probable that this verse was a later accretion to Acts. Additionally, as the phrase uttered by the Ethiopian eunuch in v. 37b (“I believe Jesus Christ to be the son of God”) is a confessional phrase that gains some currency in the fifth and sixth centuries as it will appear in the liturgy and catechetical confessions it seems all the more likely that this verse was added in this context. As Metzger has argued, “Its insertion into the text seems to have been due to the feeling that Philip would not have baptized the Ethiopian without securing a confession of faith, which needed to be expressed in the narrative.”131 Interestingly, Erasmus remarked in his notes on the New Testament (see below) that to his knowledge Acts 8:37 was not attested in any Greek manuscript he consulted, although he felt that this was due to an accidental scribal error. Before dismissing this verse outright it is worth pointing out that Irenaeus of Lyons in his Against Heresies (c. A.D. 180) mentions the confession of the Ethiopian eunuch, that is otherwise only known 129 Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) and Codex Bezae (D) are damaged in this portion of Acts so there is no way to determine whether or not they contained this verse. 130 Codex Laudianus (E), named after its former owner Archbishop William Laud, is a diglot manuscript assigned to the sixth century that contains both a Latin Text (left column) and a Greek text (right column) of the Book of Acts. On this codex see Aland and Aland, The Text of the New Testament, 110. 131 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 315. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 43 from Acts 8:37, and quotes it (albeit in Latin) rather closely to how it appears in Acts 8:37b (Greek): “I believe Jesus to be the son of God” (credo filium Dei esse Jesum).132 To conclude, this verse is absent from certain modern versions of the NT because it is not attested in any of the most important ancient manuscripts. Though some might suspect that this verse has been deliberately removed from the scriptures because it could be used against the practice of infant baptism, as it implies that there was a necessary prerequisite of confession and belief prior to baptism, something which infants are unable to do, there is no indication that this was the case. When the actual debate about the doctrine of infant baptism finally emerges in the fifth century this passage is never invoked as a proof text against the practice nor is there ever an allegation by opponents of the practice that adherents of infant baptism had this passage expunged from their scriptures. Furthermore, there are other passages in the NT, that are textually secure, that show confession as an important prerequisite for baptism (see Acts 16:29 – 33 [Jailor in Philippi]; 18:8 [Crispus ruler of the Synagogue in Corinth]). If Acts 8:37 was supposedly removed solely because it undercut the doctrine of infant baptism, why not remove these other passages also? Erasmus’ notes on this verse: Notes on the Acts of the Apostles. From Chapter Eight And Philip said. “If you believe & c. (the rest of the verse). until the place, and he commanded the chariot to stand still [v. 37],” I did not find in the Greek manuscripts, although I think that it has been omitted by the carelessness of copyists. For I found this [verse] is applied in certain Greek manuscripts, but in the margin.133 18. KJV Acts 15:34 Notwithstanding it pleased Silas to abide there still. ἔδοξε δὲ τῷ Σίλᾳ ἐπιμεῖναι αὐτοῦ. The present verse appears in the context of the aftermath of the Jerusalem Council where it was determined that Gentile followers did not need to be circumcised to become Christians but only needed to follow certain commandments decided by the apostles (v. 29 – “That ye [Gentiles] abstain from meats 132 Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 3.12.8 (=ANF 1.433). Translation is my own and is based on Latin text given in Anne Reeve and M.A. Screech (eds.), Erasmus’ Annotations on the New Testament: Acts – Romans – I and II Corinthians. Facsimile of the final Latin text with all earlier variants. (E.J. Brill: Leiden, 1990), 294. 133 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 44 offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication”). After the council Paul and Barnabas, accompanied by Silas and Judas, went to Antioch to inform the Christian congregations in the city about the ruling, which was explained in a letter they were carrying (vv. 23–29). After the four “came to Antioch” and delivered the decision of the council, v. 33 gives the impression that Silas and Judas returned “unto the apostles” and went back to Jerusalem. However, a few verses later when Paul and his companion Barnabas have a falling out over whether or not to take Mark on their next mission, it is reported in v. 39 that Barnabas took Mark and left for Cyprus and in vv. 40–1 that Paul chose Silas as his new companion and headed toward Cilicia. Verse 34 therefore functions to clarify v.33 by stating that Silas did not actually return to Jerusalem but remained in Antioch. In most modern editions of the New Testament v. 34 is omitted (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) because it does not appear in any of the most important ancient witnesses. This verse is not found in Codex Vaticanus (B), Codex Sinaiticus (), Codex Alexandrinus (A), and 74 134 . The verse does appear in Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) and in Codex Bezae (D), but in Bezae it appears as an expanded form of the verse (not used in the KJV: “But it seemed good to Silas that they remain, and Judas journeyed alone.”). The wide variety of ancient manuscripts that do not contain this verse make it highly unlikely that it was accidentally omitted due to scribal error. It seems far more likely that this verse was added by a copyist at some later point in order to clarify and explain how Paul could have chosen Silas so readily as his new companion when he [Paul] was in Antioch, if as v. 33 implies, Silas had already returned to Jerusalem. Nevertheless, beyond adding greater clarity to the chapter this verse has no significant implications. Erasmus’ notes on this verse: Notes on the Acts of the Apostles. From Chapter Fifteen To remain there.) “To remain there,” it is to remain in the same place. In other respects after these words, which is followed in our copies, “wherefore Judas alone went away to Jerusalem;” I did not find among the Greek [manuscripts]. It seemed that Silas remained there to be found, 134 74 is a seventh-century papyrus manuscript that contains large sections from Acts, James, 1 & 2 Peter, 1, 2, 3 John and Jude. It is an important witness for Acts because it contains almost the entire book. On this manuscript see Aland and Aland, The Text of the New Testament, 101. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 45 except in one manuscript, in which it is placed in the margin. Truly it is possible for this to be seen as an error made by scribes.135 19. KJVActs 24:7 But the chief captain Lysias came upon us, and with great violence took him away out of our hands, παρελθὼν δὲ Λυσίας ὁ χιλιαρχος μετὰ πολλῆς βίας ἐκ τῶν χειρῶν ἡμῶν ἀπήγαγεν This verse appears within the context of Paul’s hearing before the Roman procurator (governor) Felix in Caesarea (Acts 24:1–23). Paul is accused before Felix by a certain lawyer named Tertius, who had apparently been hired by the High Priest and Elders (v.1), of having profaned the Temple (v. 6). During Tertius’ speech he relates the events that took place in Acts 21:27–35 where Paul was beset upon by a Jewish mob at the Temple Mount because they believed he had brought a Gentile into the Temple precinct and then in the present verse (v. 7) relates how Lysias, a Roman tribune, had come and rescued Paul from the angry mob. In most modern translations of the New Testament this verse (along with v. 6b) is omitted (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) since it does not appear in any of the most important ancient manuscripts: Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Sinaiticus (); Codex Alexandrinus (A); 74.136 It is first attested in Codex Laudianus (E) from the sixth century. In light of the overwhelming manuscript evidence it seems rather certain that this verse was added to Acts. The most plausible explanation is that this verse was inserted into Tertius’ speech to clarify that it was Lysias the tribune who took Paul from the angry mob, which is directly reported previously in Acts 21:33. However, there are some scholars who feel that the verse is authentic and argue that if you jump from v.6b to v.8 without v.7 the narrative lacks clarity and completeness. While there could be something to this argument, it should also be remembered that this is precisely the place where a copyist or scribe might be most inclined to insert extra material into the text in order to clarify an otherwise semi-ambiguous passage. In any case, about the only implication of the addition/omission of this verse is that it has some bearing on the 135 Reeve and Screech (eds.), Erasmus’ Annotations on the New Testament: Acts – Romans – I and II Corinthians, 306. 136 Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) and Codex Bezae (D) are damaged in this portion of Acts so it is impossible to determine whether or not they contained this verse. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 46 interpretation of παρ οὗ (“of whom”) at the start of v. 8. If the verse is omitted this clearly refers to Paul, but if v. 7 is kept then it refers to Lysias. Erasmus’ notes on this verse: Notes on the Acts of the Apostles. From Chapter Twenty Four “Whom we took and we wanted to judge him according to our law. And the tribune Lysias came in and with great force took him from our hands, commanding his accusers to come to you.” In multiple Greek copies they lack all this. Except in one I found added, but of the smallest form, and it is in the space of the margin. 137 20. KJV Acts 28:29 And when he had said these words, the Jews departed, and had great reasoning among themselves. καὶ ταῦτα αὐτοῦ εἰπόντος, ἀπῆλθον οἱ Ἰουδαῖοι, πολλὴν ἔχοντες ἐν ἑαυτοῖς συζήτησιν The present verse forms part of the conclusion of Acts where Paul is in Rome awaiting his appearance/trial before the emperor (Acts 28:16–31). During his stay it is reported that he was actively involved in spreading the Gospel and even called the leading Jews of the city together so that he could declare the Gospel unto them (v.17). Paul’s message was met with mixed reactions (v.24), whereupon he rebuked certain of them by quoting Isaiah 6:9–10, Isaiah’s words of reproach to Israel, before they left. Verse 29 consequently describes the reactions of certain Jews after they departed from Paul. In most modern translations of the New Testament this verse is omitted (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) because it does not appear in any ancient manuscript. It is not present in Codex Vaticanus (B), Codex Sinaiticus (), Codex Alexandrinus (A), Codex Laudianus (E), and 74.138 Even Erasmus remarks (see below) that he could not locate this verse in several Greek manuscripts. Given the overwhelming manuscript evidence against the authenticity of this verse it appears to be a later interpolation to Acts. The best explanation to account for the addition of this verse it that it was inserted at some later point to smooth out the rather hasty translation from v. 28 to v. 30. Beyond smoothing out the narrative this verse has no significant theological implications. 137 Reeve and Screech (eds.), Erasmus’ Annotations on the New Testament: Acts – Romans – I and II Corinthians, 325. 138 While it appears that v.29 is absent from 74 it is not totally certain since the portion of the manuscript where v. 29 would have appeared is damaged and riddled with lacunae. Both Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) and Codex Bezae (D) are damaged in this section of Acts so it is not possible to determine if they also omitted this verse. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 47 Erasmus’ notes on this verse: Notes on the Acts of the Apostles. From Chapter Twenty Eight “And when they had said these things, the Jews departed from him, having a great dispute among themselves.” I did not find the words in several old manuscripts. 139 21. KJV Romans 16:24 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen. ἡ χάρις τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ μετὰ πάντων ὑμῶν. ἀμήν. The present verse forms part of the conclusion/final instructions in Romans (16:17–24) before the concluding doxology (16:25–27). This verse is basically a repeat of v. 20b: “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.”140 In most modern New Testament translations (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV) v. 24 is omitted because it is not attested in the following ancient manuscripts: Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Sinaiticus (); Codex Alexandrinus (A); Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C); 46; 61. However, this verse is attested in Codex Bezae (D). In light of the overwhelming manuscript evidence against the authenticity of this verse combined with the fact that it is essentially a repeat of v.20b it seems very likely that it is a later addition to Romans. Perhaps the most likely explanation for its insertion here is that it effectively closes the letter with a dominical declaration, which could have been added in a later ecclesiastical context where this letter would have been read as part of the liturgy.141 22. KJV 1 John 5:7–8 7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 8And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one. 139 7 ὅτι τρεῖς εἰσιν οἱ μαρτυροῦντες ἐν τῷ οὐρανῷ, ὁ πατήρ, ὁ λόγος, καὶ τὸ Ἅγιον Πνεῦμα· καὶ οὗτοι οἱ τρεῖς ἕν εἰσι. 8 καὶ τρεῖς εἰσὶν οἱ μαρτυροῦντες ἐν τῇ γῇ, τὸ Πνεῦμα, καὶ τὸ ὕδωρ, καὶ τὸ αἷμα· καὶ οἱ τρεῖς εἰς τὸ ἕν εἰσιν. Translation is my own and is taken from Latin text in Reeve and Screech (eds.), Erasmus’ Annotations on the New Testament: Acts – Romans – I and II Corinthians, 334. 140 There is some debate about v. 20 and whether or not “Christ” was originally a part of this verse as it is not attested in the earliest manuscripts: Codex Vaticanus (B); Codex Sinaiticus (); 46. 141 Though the final doxology (vv. 25–27) occurs with minor variations in a number of ancient manuscripts (Codex Vaticanus [B]; Codex Sinaiticus []; Codex Alexandrinus [A]; Codex Bezae [D]) there has been some debate about whether or not Paul actually appended it to his original letter or whether it was added shortly thereafter when Paul’s letters were collected and read in various early Christian communities. See Raymond F. Collins, “The Case of the Wandering Doxology: Rom 16, 25–27.” In A. Denaux (ed.), New Testament Textual Criticism and Exegesis: Festschrift J. Delobel (Leuven: Leuven University Press, 2002), 293–303. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 48 The present two verses form part of the narrative section that concludes 1 John wherein the author testifies about the reality of “Jesus Christ” and that he was indeed the “Son of God” (vv. 6–20). As these verses currently stand within the KJV they are used within this narrative to assert the unity of the Godhead. In virtually every modern translation of the New Testament v.7b and v.8a are omitted since they do not appear in a single ancient Greek manuscript (CEV, ESV, NAB, NIV, NJB, NLT, NRSV, NWT, REB, RSV, TEV). In the oldest Greek manuscripts containing 1 John, Codex Sinaiticus (), Codex Vaticanus (B), and Codex Alexandrinus (A), these two verses read as follows:142 7aFor there are three that bear record, 8bthe Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one. Similarly, not a single early church father writing in Greek is aware of 1 John 5:7b–8a. For example, the earliest Christian commentator on these verses, Clement of Alexandria, when he references them cites them as follows: “7aFor there are three that bear witness, 8bthe spirit, and the water, and the blood, and these three are one.”143 The fact that no Greek writer of the ancient Church is aware of 1 John 5:7b–8a is very telling, especially when one considers the theological controversies of the fourth-century that centered on the nature of the Godhead (i.e. Arianism and Sabellianism) and were resolved by promulgating the doctrine of the Trinity. Certainly, if 1 John 5:7b–8a were authentic, why then did not a single church father writing in Greek cite these verses in defense of Trinitarian theology as they form the only explicit Trinitarian formula in the entire New Testament? When one goes beyond the Greek New Testament and Greek patristic writers and examines other ancient copies of the New Testament, whether they be in Syriac, Coptic, or Ethiopic, the results are the same.144 No ancient copy of 1 John in any of these languages contains 5:7b–8a. Similarly, a survey of the Old Latin version of the New Testament, preserved fragmentarily by the likes of such Latin Fathers as Tertullian, Cyprian, and Augustine, reveals that 1 John 5:7b–8a was not in the earliest Latin versions of 142 Codex Bezae (D) does not contain any of the Johannine epistles (1,2,3 John). Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C) is damaged in this section of the codex so it is not possible to determine how 1 John 5:7–8 read in this codex. 143 This reference comes from the fragments of Clement preserved by the sixth-century Roman statesman and monastic founder Cassiodorus (c. A.D. 485–580) who preserves select exegetical fragments of Clement in Latin. See Frag. III (=ANF 2.576). 144 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 648. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 49 the New Testament.145 Furthermore, it is evident that Jerome’s Vulgate did not contain these verses either.146 Based on the overwhelming textual evidence it is fairly obvious that 1 John 5:7b–8a, commonly referred to as the Comma Johanneum (“Johannine Comma”)147 is not authentic and is clearly a much later interpolation. The question that may now be asked is, where did it come from? The earliest attestation of the Comma Johanneum, comprising 1 John 5:7b–8a, is to be found in the Liber Apologeticus, a fourthcentury homily by either bishop Priscillian of Avila (d. A.D. 385) or his successor Bishop Instantius.148 According to Metzger it was at some point between the fifth and sixth centuries when this interpolation was placed in select Latin versions of 1 John: Apparently the gloss [1 John 5:7b–8a] arose when the original passage [1 John 5:7–8] was understood to symbolize the Trinity (through the mention of three witnesses: the Spirit, the water, and the blood), an interpretation that may have been written first as a marginal note that afterwards found its way into the text. In the fifth century the gloss was quoted by Latin Fathers in North Africa and Italy as part of the text of the Epistle, and from the sixth century onwards it is found more and more frequently in manuscripts of the Old Latin and of the Vulgate.149 At some point between the eighth and ninth centuries, when this reading caught on and became somewhat widespread in Latin New Testament manuscripts of the time, it was apparently conscripted into select Greek manuscripts. At present, the earliest Greek manuscript that contains 1 John 5:7b–8a is a tenthcentury manuscript in the Bodleian library at Oxford where these verses are added as part of an alternative reading.150 Of the nearly 5,400 known Greek manuscripts of the New Testament only eight contain the Comma Johanneum, and most of them are from the fifteenth or sixteenth century.151 145 Though some have tried to argue that Cyprian in The Unity of the Catholic Church 6 refers to 1 John 5:7a– 8b, this is not correct. See Maurice Bévenot (trans and ed.), St. Cyprian: The Lapsed, The Unity of the Catholic Church (Westminster, MD: The Newman Press, 1957), no. 53 p. 109. 146 Specifically Codex Fuldensis, one of the earliest and most important manuscripts of the Vulgate copied c. A.D. 541–46, does not contain these verses. Similarly, Codex Amiatinus, copied before A.D. 716, the earliest nearly complete copy of the entire Latin Vulgate, does not contain 1 John 5:7b–8a. 147 It is given this designation (i.e. “Johannine Comma”) since the interpolated material neatly forms a short subordinate clause within the narrative flow of the two verses. 148 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 648. 149 Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 648. 150 Though this manuscript is dated to the tenth century it is not certain whether the addition of 1 John 5:7b – 8a was made immediately after the manuscript was written or a considerable time later. 151 For these manuscripts see Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, 647–48. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 50 The story of how it made its way into the Greek New Testament produced by Erasmus, which subsequently paved the way for its inclusion in the KJV, is very intriguing and worth retelling. In the first and second editions of Erasmus’ Greek New Testament published respectively in 1516 and 1519 1 John 5:7b–8a was not included. This was because Erasmus knew of no Greek manuscript that actually included these verses. However, by not including these verses Erasmus, and subsequently his version of the New Testament, began to come under increasing attack from various quarters of the church as he was accused with all sorts of accusations that ranged from “indolence” (Lat. supinitas), for not adequately or thoroughly checking all Greek manuscripts of the time, to heresy, because 1 John 5:7b–8a was thought to be a divine safeguard against Arianism.152 Among the many critics at this time one of the most vocal was Edward Lee who would later serve as Archbishop of York (1531–1544). Ever since Erasmus published his first edition of the Greek New Testament Lee had been a harsh critic and so in May of 1520 Erasmus issued a detailed response directly to Lee (Responsio ad Annotationes Eduardi Lei) defending himself and his work and explained why 1 John 5:7b–8a was not included in his first two editions of the Greek New Testament. As Erasmus stated: I shall merely say that I examined at various times more than seven manuscripts and did not find in any of them what we read in our texts. If I had come across one manuscript that had the reading found in our texts, I would have added the phrase missing in the others on the strength of that one. Since that did not happen I did the only thing possible and indicated what was lacking in the Greek texts.153 Though some have taken this as a promise by Erasmus to include 1 John 5:7b–8a in a future edition of his Greek New Testament, should a Greek manuscript be brought to him that contains these verses, this is not really the case. Here Erasmus is merely defending himself against the baseless charge of Lee that he (i.e. Erasmus) was guilty of “negligence” (Lat. supinitas) for not including these verses. In any case, in the third edition of his Greek New Testament published in 1522 Erasmus did include the Comma Johanneum, and it subsequently remained in all future editions. The primary reason for its insertion was 152 H.J. De Jonge, “Erasmus and the Comma Johanneum” Ephemerides theologicae Lovanienses 56.4 (1980): 382–86. 153 Erasmus. Controversies with Edward Lee. Collected Works of Erasmus vol. 72. Jane Philips (ed.). Erika Rummel (trans.) (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2005), 404, 408. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 51 because very conveniently a manuscript of the Greek New Testament, which just happened to contain 1 John 5:7b–8a, suddenly appeared and sometime between May 1520 and June 1521 was brought to the attention of Erasmus; whereupon he included the Comma Johanneum in his third edition. However, it is evident that Erasmus did have some reservations about the authenticity of this manuscript and how it miraculously appeared out of nowhere. This manuscript, known today as Codex Montfortianus, or by Erasmus as Codex Britiannicus, dates to the early sixteenth century.154 It contains the entire New Testament written in miniscule script with one column per page and it has long been recognized that this manuscript was basically produced to induce Erasmus to include the Comma Johanneum since there was now a Greek manuscript that contained these verses.155 As Metzger and Ehrman argue: In an unguarded moment, Erasmus may have promised that he would insert the Comma Johanneum, as it is called, in future editions if a single Greek manuscript could be found that contained the passage. At length, such a copy was found–or was made to order! As it now appears, the Greek manuscript had probably been written in Oxford about 1520 by a Franciscan friar named Froy (or Roy), who took the disputed words from the Latin Vulgate. Erasmus inserted the passage in his third edition (1522), but in a lengthy footnote that was included in his volume of annotation, he intimated suspicion that the manuscript had been prepared expressly in order to confute him.156 Though Metzger and Ehrman suggest an alleged promise made by Erasmus to include these verses should they be found in a Greek manuscript, there is no substantial evidence that Erasmus felt oath bound by any promise to include these verses if they could be found in a Greek manuscript. A more likely reason for their inclusion in a subsequent edition was that Erasmus was being attacked from a number of ecclesiastical quarters for not including the Comma Johanneum and so wanted to both defend his good name and ensure the continued success of his Greek version of the New Testament.157 As a result, these verses were later included in the KJV, since they appeared in all versions of Erasmus’s Greek NT after 154 It is designated by the number 61 and is currently housed at Trinity College in Dublin. See Aland and Aland, The Text of the New Testament, 129. 155 J. Rendel Harris, The Origin of the Leicester Codex of the New Testament (London: Clay, 1887), 46–53. 156 Metzger and Ehrman, The Text of the New Testament, 146–47. 157 De Jonge, “Erasmus and the Comma Johanneum” 385. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 52 the second edition, even though they clearly did not originally belong in 1 John. The correct reading for 1 John 5: 7–8 should be as follows: “7 For there are three that bear record, 8 the Spirit and the water and the blood, and these three agree in one. Erasmus’ notes on these verses:158 Notes on the Epistle of John I. From Chapter Five “There are three who give testimony in heaven.” In the Greek manuscript(s) I only found this concerning the testimony of the three: “there are three testifying, the spirit and the water and the blood,” it is, because there are three that testify, the spirit, and the water, and the blood. The divine Jerome announced beforehand in his canonical letters, that this passage was suspected to be a corruption from the Latin interpreters, & the testimony of “the Father, Son, & Holy Spirit” was omitted by several. . . . To this Paolo Bombasio, a learned and blameless man, at my enquiry described this passage to me word for word from a very old codex from the Vatican library, in which it does not have the testimony “of the father, word, and spirit.” If anyone is impressed by age, the book was very ancient; if by the authority of the Pope, this testimony was sought from his library. The edition by Aldina agrees with this reading. . . .159 Conclusion In conclusion, it should be readily apparent that there are some passages in the KJV NT that do not actually belong based on an examination of the ancient evidence. Of the twenty-two passages that appear in the KJV but are otherwise omitted or bracketed in most modern editions, there are good grounds for omitting nineteen of them. Though this sounds like a significant number, when one considers that there are about 7,956 verses in the entire NT, this makes up only two thirds of one percent of the entire NT (.0067).160 This statistic is not meant to mitigate the findings of this study but to put them into perspective. While the KJV NT certainly has some textual problems owing to its Greek subtext it must 158 Erasmus’ notes on these verses are too long to cite in their entirety so only a selection will be provided. Translation is my own and is based on Erasmus’ Latin text given in Anne Reeve and M.A. Screech (eds.), Erasmus’ Annotations on the New Testament: Galatians to the Apocalypse (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1993), passim 768– 71. 160 A total of 40 of 7,956 verses. 159 STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 53 also be acknowledged that most of the time, in fact the overwhelming majority of the time, the Greek subtext text agrees with the ancient textual evidence as it currently stands. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. Matthew 12:47 Matthew 17:21 Matthew 18:11 Matthew 21:44 Matthew 23:14 Mark 7:16 Mark 9:44 Mark 9:46 Mark 11:26 Mark 15:28 Mark 16:9–20 Luke 17:36 Luke 22:43–44 Luke 23:17 John 5:4 John 7:53–8:11 Acts 8:37 Acts 15:34 Acts 24:7 Acts 28:29 Romans 16:24 1 John 5:7b–8a Totals: Likely Authentic (original) ü Likely Added (unoriginal) 161 Definitely Added (unoriginal) ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü ü 3 12 ü 7 With most of the nineteen passages whose textual integrity is to be doubted, whether they are omitted or not makes little or no difference doctrinally or theologically to the NT. For example, nos. 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 14 may be regarded as some kind of Gospel harmonization. Though all of these verses should probably be omitted as they appear to be scribal interpolations aimed at harmonizing different Gospel passages, since they have been directly conscripted from elsewhere in the Gospels even if they are omitted from their present locations they are still authentic verses elsewhere. Consequently, little is changed doctrinally by omitting these passages. For example, no. 9 Mark 11:26 has been taken directly from Matt. 6:15, which is otherwise a textually secure verse. Therefore, even though Mark 11:26 should be omitted, the same material can still be found in Matt. 6:15 so that effectively nothing is lost. The same 161 Even if every single invalid variant attested in the KJV NT were counted, not just those variants (treated in this examination) that effect an entire verse or passage but those that effect parts of a verse or a few words, the ratio would certainly be greater than .0067 but it would still be negligible. I suspect that it would not exceed 2% of the total NT text. STUDIES IN THE BIBLE AND ANTIQUITY 3 (2011) TEXT-CRITICAL COMPARISON OF THE KJV(BLUMELL) • 54 is generally true for the other nine instances of harmonization. While nos. 17 and 21 are not “Gospel Harmonizations,” since the material they contain can be securely found elsewhere in the NT, their omission makes little difference doctrinally. Additionally, other verses, like nos. 19 and 20, have no real significance outside of clarifying the mundane details of a passage and therefore have no real theological significance. On the other hand, however, there are a few verses that do carry theological implications, and significant ones at that. Without doubt the omission that has the greatest theological significance is no. 22, 1 John 5:7b–8a. If this verse is admitted as authentic then it could be argued that there is at least one verse in the NT that contains overt Trinitarian theology. However, as this and numerous other studies before it have shown, the famous, or perhaps infamous, Johannine Comma is clearly a much later interpolation that lacks any ancient textual support whatsoever. To a lesser extent the omission of no. 15 John 5:4 does potentially have some theological significance because if it were authentic the principles upon which miracles are thought to be predicated (e.g. faithfulness, righteousness, etc.) would have to be expanded to include arbitrary chance. Looking at nos. 1, 4, and 13, three verses in the KJV that are sometimes omitted in modern translations but whose textual integrity can be readily defended, only no. 12 Luke 22:43–44 has any significant theological implications. If these verses are admitted to be authentic then it has theological consequences for how one views Jesus’ atoning sacrifice and the role Gethsemane played in that sacrifice. Though this analysis has shown that in most text-critical cases the KJV NT is inferior to many modern editions, it should not be inferred that this study is arguing for the complete abandonment of the KJV NT in favor of a more modern version. While the KJV does have text-critical deficiencies these should not be over-exaggerated, nor should they overshadow some of the strengths of the KJV like the fact that it often renders a very close or literal translation of the Greek text – a thing some modern editions have gotten too far away from by taking too much license with their translations. If anything is to be taken from this article it is that despite its shortcoming the KJV is still a respectable edition of the NT that can still, even 400 years after its publication, be used with much profit, especially if one is made aware of some of its text-critical deficiencies. ...
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This note was uploaded on 10/23/2011 for the course REL A 212 taught by Professor Richardd.draper during the Fall '09 term at BYU.

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