Tag Archives: textual criticism

Eusebius ad Marinum

EUSEBIUS OF CAESAREA, Gospel Problems and Solutions, Quaestiones ad Stephanum et Marinum

Announcing a new upload for you to download. This PDF contains Eusebius’ Quaestiones ad Stephanum et Marinum. Edited by Roger Pearse, Greek and Latin translated by David J. D. Miller.  This document contains the famous passage by Eusebius which indicates that in his day, almost all copies of the Gospel of Mark did not contain 16:9-20.  For that section of the text, right-click Eusebius- Gospel Problems and Solutions, Quaestiones ad Marinum, and choose “save as,” and tell your computer where to save the pdf, then open it and go to page 113 of the pdf, (p. 97 of the printed document.)  There you will find the section entitled “To Marinus.”

Please share this post about Eusebius’ Quaestiones ad Marinum:

Codex Sinaiticus Correctors

I have in August 2015 adopted the sigla conventions of the NA28 for the correctors of Codex Sinaiticus in Revelation, and updated my apparatus accordingly:

א*           4th century
א¹            4th – 6th century (only one occurrence- in 21:4
א²            7th century
א²a          7th century
א²b          7th century
אc            12th century

To download my translation of Revelation.

Simon the Zealot or Canaanite?

In Mark 3:18 and Matthew 10:4, the the King James Bible has Simon as a Canaanite.  However, in Luke 6:15 and Acts 1:13, the KJV has Simon as a Zealot.  These are not really compatible to be mutually co-existent, since Jesus would not have appointed a Gentile to be one of the Twelve, or one of the names on the twelve foundations of the New Jerusalem in Revelation 21:14.  In teh Matthew passage, in the very next verse, Matt. 10:5, Jesus tells the twelve not to go down any Gentile road, but to go “only to the lost sheep of Israel.”  Jesus surely would not tell a Gentile that.  Moreover, since the KJV admits that Simon was a zealot, this is also unlikely, that a Gentile would be a Zealot, one of the factions of Judaism.  The earliest manuscripts of Matthew and Mark say Simon was a καναναῖος, which word was derived from the Aramaic word for Zealot.  And the Textus Receptus and the Byzantine text have Simon a Κανανίτης.  Strong’s Concordance for this word, G2581, says this word also is derived from קנּא kan-naw’, “Jealous.” Canaan in Greek consistently starts with the letter Χ :

Canaan (ie., Genesis 13:12) Χανααν; Canaanite: Χαναναίων (Genesis 10:18) Χαναναίους (Genesis 15:21)  And in the NT, for the Canaanite woman, Matt 15:22, Χαναναία

BDAG Lexicon: “Κανανίτης, ου, ὁ man from Cana, Cananite. Acc. to Strabo 14, 5, 14 one of the two Stoics named Athenodorus received this name to distinguish him fr. the other Ath.; ἀπὸ κώμης τινός (Cana near Tarsus) was added. Numerous mss. replace the apparently unintelligible Καναναῖος with this term.” Under Κανά it says the home of, “according to many, also of Simon, Mt 10:4 (s. Καναναῖος). – Heinz Noetzel, Christus und Dionysus ’60. – EDNT.BBHW II 926. M-M.”

The bottom line is that both variants apparently mean the same thing: someone from Cana.  The KJV saying Canaanite is simply rendered incorrectly in English.

I have updated my footnotes on the pertinent passages in Matthew and Mark.  They are linked for downloading.

2 Peter with Greek text

Announcing a new Greek-English diglot of 2nd Epistle of Peter, with TC footnotes citing 9 Greek editions: TR, Tregelles, Westcott-Hort, Antoniades, VonSoden, Robinson-Pierpont, Byzantine Greek New Testament (f35), SBL, and NA28/ECM2. And citing Greek MSS P72 P74 01 A B C K L P 044 048 049 0142 0156 0209 0247 5 33 307 623 665 1175 1241 1243 1448 1735 1739 1852 2298 2423 2464 2805.

TR edition cited is Stephens 1550, except in 3:7, where Stephens, Beza, Elzevir, Erasmus, and Scrivener are split.


Please share this post.

Collations of MSS 65 and 115

I have been adding manuscripts, minuscules, to my chart of the Pericope of the Adulteress and the Pericope of  the angel bathing in John.  The latest are GA 65, Harley MS 5776, XI century, and GA 115, Harley MS 5559, X century.

Interesting that 65 has asterisks next to the angel in the pool of Bethesda pericope.  In minuscule 115, on folio 260 verso, the text goes from John 7:52 skipping the Pericope, right to 8:12.  But then it goes back to John 7:53 and the Pericope!  It’s as if the copyist had an exemplar without the Pericope, then saw the Pericope in another exemplar, and proceeded to insert the Pericope.  I have added this data to the chart.

Royse and the Majority Text Enthusiasts

I’m working on my translation of the Epistle of James. I remind us all how we have constantly heard from Majority Text / Byzantine text enthusiasts about the Royse study on scribal habits, how scribes were more likely to drop a word than add a word. Okay, then, I expect the Majority Text / Byzantine text editors to add at least one or some of the following words back to their texts that are found in the NA28 text but not in theirs.

1:19 ESTW DE, MT has only ESTW
5:10 EN TWI, MT has only EN
5:11 ESTIN hO KURIOS, MT has only ESTIN

The NA28 has in fact moved a little toward the MT in this regard. For example, in James 2:14, older editions said only TI OFELOS, but now have agreed in the 28th edition with the MT as TI TO OFELOS. And in 2:15, older editions said only LEIPOMENOI, but the NA28 now says LEIPOMENOI WSIN like the MT. And in 4:10 added TOU. Three instances in James where the Nestle-Aland text moved closer to the Majority Text. But will the Majority Text / Byzantine Text-type enthusiasts ever budge? I’m not holding my breath. If it’s not in their favorite family of manuscripts, no amount of reason to the contrary ever suffices.

Most Important Greek Textual Variant

Is This the Most Important Greek Textual Variant?

Revelation 14:9-11 says that if anyone takes the mark of the beast, that person will be tortured in fire and sulphur for ever and ever.

So it is very important not to get the mark. But how will it happen that people take the mark? Will it be forced on them by the beast, or will they give it to themselves / get it for themselves? Because of this question, I think that the textual variant below from Revelation 13:16 is the most important textual variant in the Bible.

In the first set of manuscripts, “they” are giving the mark. In the second set, with the Textus Receptus alone among the editions, “he,” that is, the beast, is giving the mark.

“they” Aleph A C P 046 82 94 141 172 175 181 241 256 367 424 459 469 616 627 792 920 922 986 2059 1611 1678 1732 1778 1828 1854 1862 1888 2019 2020 2026 2028 2048 2067 2070 2080 2081 2138 2256 2349 2351 2436 sahidic WH VS TG RC AT PK NA27 HF RP SBL

“he” 051 2053 2065 2302 2329 2814 TR

Download this chart in the Swanson style for the variant in 78 manuscripts and 11 editions.

Rev. 13:16

KJV: “And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:”

NIV: He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead,

NASB: And he causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free men and the slaves, to be given a mark on their right hand or on their forehead,


DRP: And he causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free and the slave, to provide themselves a mark on their right upper limb or on their forehead,

Rev. 14:9-11: And another angel, a third one, followed those, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and takes the mark on his forehead or on his hand, he shall himself also drink of the wine of the wrath of God, mixed undiluted in the cup of his anger, and he shall be tormented with fire and sulfur before the holy angels and before the Lamb. And the smoke of their torture goes up for ever and ever, and they have no relief day or night, those who worship the beast and the image of him, and anyone who takes the mark of his name.”

I have received criticism of my rendering of this verse. Here is a copy of some of that discussion, from a discussion board:

Critic: “Surely the unmentioned subject of the plural verb δωσιν does not refer to those included in παντας, but rather is generic, namely, ‘He makes it so that they (generic) should give all a mark on their right hand or forehead,’ hence why most translations simply say ‘receive’ instead of the unnecessarily wooden-literal translation.”

My response:

Rev. 13:16 καὶ ποιεῖ πάντας, τοὺς μικροὺς καὶ τοὺς μεγάλους, καὶ τοὺς πλουσίους καὶ τοὺς πτωχούς, καὶ τοὺς ἐλευθέρους καὶ τοὺς δούλους, ἵνα δῶσιν αὐτοῖς χάραγμα ἐπὶ τῆς χειρὸς αὐτῶν τῆς δεξιᾶς ἢ ἐπὶ τὸ μέτωπον αὐτῶν,

Let me get this straight. You are saying that ποιεῖ, 3rd person singular, should be rendered “He makes it,” where there is no Greek word present for “it.” So you supply an object for the verb. And you are saying that δῶσιν, 3rd person plural, which means “they give,” agrees in grammatical concord with an un-named subject you supply, rather than agrees with the 3rd person plural πάντας, which immediately and naturally follows our verb ποιεῖ.

So, you are supplying both an unwritten object, and an unwritten subject. All in one sentence!
Call me unreasonable, but how is this “surely”? I don’t see anything sure about it.

If you truly honestly believe that that is what the Greek means, then you should write that in your translation, like this, “And he makes it so that they give everyone a mark…” That isn’t so wooden. But literal it certainly is not. That would be very far from literal.

And I want to state, in case some readers don’t know, that the pronoun αὐτοῖς can and often does mean “themselves” as in ἑαυτοῖς. There is a contraction in the Greek of that time for ἑαυτοῖς as follows : αὑτοῖς. Notice the difference between αὐτοῖς and αὑτοῖς? There is a huge difference. The first has a smooth breathing mark, so it means “them,” and the second has a rough breathing mark, so it means “themselves.” Reflexive meaning. But the earliest Greek manuscripts did not necessarily always have breathing marks and punctuation. One of the most common Greek textual variants in Revelation, about which I am very knowledgeable by the way, and won’t apologize for it, is this confusion between αὐτός and αὑτός in the minuscules.

I thus find it easy to defend my rendering of this verse in my translation of Revelation. Your defense on the other hand of “most translations” is a great example of why I do not trust “most translations,” and am doing my own.

To download my translation of the Revelation of John, use this link.

Please share this post about the most important Greek textual variant:

Grenfell & Hunt Hibeh Papyri

Uploaded: Grenfell and Hunt, the Hibeh Papyri Part 1

Edited with translations and notes. With Ten Plates.

“The papyri which form the subject of the present volume were obtained in the spring of 1902 from the Ptolemaic necropolis of El-Hibeh, partly by purchase, partly from our first excavations at that site, as is recorded in the Introduction. On p. 5 will be found an explanation of the remarkable fact that some of the literary papyri here edited belong to MSS. of which fragments were published by us in 1897. The papyri were, with one exception (no. 23), derived from mummy-cartonnage, and all belong to the third century B.C. …” Bernard P. Grenfell – Arthur S. Hunt.

You can download Grenfell and Hunt Hibeh Papyri here, or on my new Bible translation page.

Share this post about Grenfell and Hunt Hibeh Papyri: