Textual Notes in the ESV

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by Deacon, Apr 15, 2007.

  1. Deacon

    Deacon
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    There is nothing outside a person that by going into him can defile him, but the things that come out of a person are what defile him.”
    Some manuscripts add verse 16: If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear
    Mark 7:15 (ESV)

    And he said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many.
    Some manuscripts insert new
    Mark 14:24 (ESV)

    Textual Notes of the ESV in the Gospel of Mark

    “All variants are either accidental (slips of eye, ear, or mind) or deliberate (in the sense that the copyist either consciously or unconsciously tried to “improve” the text he was copying).

    Deliberate variations may be for a variety of reasons: harmonization, clarification, simplification, improvement of Greek style, or theology. You need to be aware that the vast majority of “deliberate” variants were attempts to “improve” the text in some way—to make it more readable and/or understandable.”
    [Gordon Fee, in New Testament Exegesis : A handbook for students and pastors (2002). (3rd ed.) p.60, 61.]

    One of the first tasks involved in the process of translation is to establish the text.
    Important variants in the text need to be identified.
    This is important even when following a single textform because differences are found even between manuscripts of a single textform.
    It is not a new task, these same decisions were made by the translators of the King James Version, who evaluated all the manuscripts available to them and made text critical decisions.

    More and more modern translations are identifying where these decisions were made and recording alternatives in a footnote.

    The gospel of Mark in the English Standard Version singles out 30 of these textual variants in its footnotes.

    Of the variants noted, 24 of them follow the Nestle-Aland 27th Edition Greek New Testament text, four of the 24 are found in both the NA27 and the Byzantine “Majority” Textform [Robinson/Pierpont Byzantine Greek New Testament, 2005], an additional three textual variants are bracketed in the NA27 text and are unbracketed in the Byzantine Majority text.

    Two variants (Mark 1:29 and 3:32) are not found in either the NA27 or the Byzantine Majority text but follow a minority opinion expressed by Bruce Metzger in his commentary, A Textual Commentary of the Greek New Testament (4th rev. ed., 1994).

    In one instance (7:24) the ESV follows the Byzantine Majority text which is at variance with the NA27 Greek text but it should be noted that here the Byzantine Majority text agrees with the Westcott and Hort Greek New Testament.

    In another case (10:26) the ESV follows the Westcott and Hort Greek text which differs from both the NA27 and Byzantine Majority texts.

    Rob
     
    #1 Deacon, Apr 15, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 15, 2007
  2. Plain Old Bill

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    I take it this is an informational post.:godisgood:
     
  3. Deacon

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    Opps, I must have forgotten to use the word “corruption” or to say that the translators created inerrant version. :laugh:

    Anyone notice that my numbers in the original post didn’t add up? :BangHead:

    Of the 30 variants noted in Mark,
    [Mark 1:1, 2, 29; 2:16, 22; 3:32; 5:1, 36; 6:16; 7:4, 16, 24; 8:10, 15; 9:24, 29, 36, (9:44,46); 10:7, 24, 26; 11:19, 24, 26; 13:33; 14:24, 68; 15:28, 39; 16:9ff]

    22 of them follow the Nestle-Aland 27th Edition Greek New Testament text, four of the 22 are found in both the NA27 and the Byzantine “Majority” Textform [Robinson/Pierpont Byzantine Greek New Testament, 2005], an additional three textual variants are bracketed in the NA27 text and are unbracketed in the Byzantine Majority text.

    Two variants (Mark 1:29 and 3:32) are not found in either the NA27 or the Byzantine Majority text but follow a minority opinion expressed by Bruce Metzger in his commentary, A Textual Commentary of the Greek New Testament (4th rev. ed., 1994).

    In one instance (7:24) the ESV follows the Byzantine Majority text which is at variance with the NA27 Greek text but it should be noted that here the Byzantine Majority text agrees with the Westcott and Hort Greek New Testament.

    In another case (10:26) the ESV follows the Westcott and Hort Greek text which differs from both the NA27 and Byzantine Majority texts.

    The last of the 30 variants is Mark 16:9ff which is double bracketed in the NA27 indicating a strong likelihood of not having been included in the original.

    Excluding the Mark 16, which is problematic, none of the variants are of consequence; not one of them effects doctrine.
    (I really would have liked attending the conference at SEBTS concerning “The Last Twelve Verses of Mark” this past weekend but restrained myself because I didn’t think it would be worth the cost of a flight and rental car.)

    Rob
     
  4. Phillip

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    Whether it is informational or not it points out an interesting trend and that is to put in the variants and allow people to see them. Since nobody can produce the originals, then it is obvious that in a court of law they would all have to be considered if they produced some sort of evidence.
     
  5. Phillip

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    Am I mistaken or was this already done in 1611 when the first printing edition of the KJV came off the press? ...and do these footnotes still exist in today's "replica" 1611 printings?

    Not trying to start an issue here about versions, I just thought that there were some of these variants mentioned in the original printing. . . ?
     
  6. Ed Edwards

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    Yes, the paper reprints (not the electronic version) have the
    original Translator notes. The translator notes include variations
    among the sources available to the KJV Translators.
    This is the same as is done today with many modern versions (MVs)
    only the translators of the MVs have more sources including some
    not available to the KJV translators. Yet some condem one
    while praising the other:

    Here is an excerpt from my working document:

    DOUBLE STANDARDS:
    ---------------------
    600 - the margin notes

    ---601 - the margin notes in the KJV are of Divine origin; the margin notes in the MV are of demonic origin

    ---602 - Marginal notes by translators should not be read; they show the divine, inspired translators were confused and we know God is NOT the author of confusion

    ---603 - The footnotes are not scripture in the KJV but are scripture in the nKJV.

    ---604 - The KJV translators can use margin notes of sources to correct their text; MV translators cannot use margin notes of sources to correct their text.

    ---605 - The KJV translators can use margin notes of sources to correct their text; but nobody can even use the KJV margin notes to help understand the scripture
    -------------------------

    Caveat: not all double standards are used by any body, but all
    the double standards are encountered.
     
  7. Pastor_Bob

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    I have been in and around KJVO churches for the past 30 years. I have neither heard nor read any of the above standards promoted by the KJVO. Unless these thoughts reflect your views as a former KJVO, please document where you read or where you heard these standards advanced. Otherwise, I have no choice but to consider them as fictional.
     
  8. Ed Edwards

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    It all happened right here on the Baptist Board at one time
    or another. I've done a lot of rewording and spelling correction,
    but the idea(s) have been so expressed.

    I note many of the Version threads are hard to research.
    God gave me two grandchildren to raise, so you will understand
    why I don't go backfill my words with proofs from the BB
    archives.

    I also note that many of the people who said such
    wierd things have been removed from the BB
    generally for:

    1. conduct unbecoming a Christian
    2. sneaking back in once banned.

    :jesus:
     
  9. Pastor_Bob

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    In other words, "I've taken statements completely out of context."

    I've been here on baptistboard.com as long as have you brother; I can't remember reading anything that would imply what you say has been said.
     
  10. Ed Edwards

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    Do you recall having read this 600 series DOUBLE STANDARDS
    before? They have appeared two or three times?

    Nobody fussed much when I put them here before?

    Again, God had loaded me down with higher priority work
    (raising Grandchildren) than doing your research work
    for you. Gotta get up early and get them off to shcool.
    Goodnight.
     
  11. Bluefalcon

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    Mk 7:16 is an interesting case. We ought to question why and how the words happened to become present in all Greek MSS but five before the 10th century, and, believe me, many more than five Greek MSS from before the 10th century have survived (I count more than 25 MSS before the 10th century that have this passage). Of course, the words might be so overwhelmingly present simply because they were there from the very beginning, and such must be considered a real possibility. There are reasons, moreover, why the words might have been omitted by scholarly recension. First, they sound like an editorial addition. But if Jesus did not say the words, is it too hard to believe that Mark could have added the parenthetical note, as he often does elsewhere? Second, the words are absent from the parallel section in Matthew (Mt 15:1-20 = Mk 7:1-23). For the few MSS that do not contain the words, this could then be a case of editors harmonizing the Gospel of Mark to the Gospel of Matthew, which is frequent enough among editors of the New Testament gospel tradition. And so, yet again, the Byzantine tradition actually preserves the non-harmonistic and presumably original reading. We need to be grateful for the Alexandrian editors who tried feverishly to expunge the Western interpolations that bloated the Egyptian texts in second and third centuries, but even their editorial acumen did not always get it right.
     
  12. Deacon

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    Interesting indeed.

    To my knowledge nobody says that the words are not biblical; they just don't think that they belong in this location of the text.

    Wieland Willker's on-line textual commentary of the gospel of Mark remarks:

    "Overall, a harmonization by omission like this is not very probable though.
    The support from a number of Byzantine minuscules for the omission is curious and points to a secondary omission.
    Greeven also suggests that the words might have been omitted because they interrupt the narrative.
    A better insertion point would have been after 7:23.
    But note that the lection in the Synaxarion runs from 7:5-16 (Tue, 16th week after Pentecost). The next day (Wed) the lection runs from 7:14-23.
    This sentence might be worth a little study.
    Rating: 2? (NA probably original)
    External Rating: 2 (NA clearly original)
    (after weighting the witnesses)"

    I believe linking this variant to an early lectionary is an important clue.

    Many of the variants noted in the ESV's footnotes were very difficult ones with evidence fairly evenly balanced.

    Rob
     
    #12 Deacon, Apr 17, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 17, 2007
  13. Bluefalcon

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    There are places where the words of this verse (Mk 7:16), or something like it, were added to Scripture due to lectionary influence (Mt 25:29; Lk 12:21, 21:4). Taking a look at the paltry external support for the insertion of this reading in those places is instructive in this instance, and indicates even further the originality of the words in Mk 7:16. The words in Mk 7:16 are not just Byzantine, but have good witnesses from everywhere, including the Western, Caesarean, and even the Egyptian regions. Its support among the early versions is also from everywhere. Alexandrian editors thought to omit it probably for the same reasons that the similar words were (rightly) omitted from Mt 25:29, Lk 12:21, 21:4, but the external evidence and the internal arguments dominate for the originality of the words in Mk 7:16.
     
  14. Ed Edwards

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    At a bulletin board not far from the Baptist Board
    in cyber space, it says:

    //Some of the things I have noticed about the NKJV:
    ...
    The Preface also states the marginal notes are there
    so that the readers can know what is in the underlying
    texts - yet it is these marginal notes that correct,
    contradict, and cast doubt on God's Word
    over and over.//

    I know my KJV1611 Edition has those marginal notes
    like unto the NKJV (or here in this topic even the ESV).
    This is a double standard and illustrates my
    Double #60 (see post #7 above).

    IMHO the marginal notes by the translators are
    the truth of the matter, yet my HOLY BIBLE
    is damned for having them cause they
    "cast doubt on God's Word"? Something is
    very rotten in Denmark :(
     
  15. Deacon

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    The answer is sometimes yes, (and usually no).
    I started a thread more than a month ago called, Notes in the 16111 KJV [LINK] when I first began my study of the notes in the ESV.

    Rob
     
  16. Bluefalcon

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    Mk 14:24 is also an interesting case. Does the text read "blood of the covenant" or "blood of the new covenant." A similar problem occurs in the parallel of Mt 26:28, and here it may be said simply that the "Alexandrian" reading in Mark follows the Alexandrian reading in Matthew, while the "Byzantine" reading in Mark parallels the Byzantine reading in Matthew. An erudite Alexandrian editor wanting to purify the text from perceived Western improvements or theological advancements might perceive the "new" in the phrase to be just that, and then move to correct the biblical expression back into its "original" form, i.e., that found in Ex 24:8 (cf. also Heb 9:20). Since much of the synoptic gospel tradition does contain exact or near exact wording across its parallel threading, it is also not impossible to suppose that Jesus may have actually said "blood of the new covenant" and that all the synoptic gospel composers may have recorded it as such. And so the "Alexandrian" reading once again apparently only combines the appearance of improvement with the absence of its reality, whereas the presumed original "Byzantine" reading continues to enjoy the status of the highest real excellence.
     
  17. Bluefalcon

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    Mk 1:2 is a good example harmonization by just 4 MSS from before the 9th century (only 3 from before the 8th) to the parallel passages. The famous words which Matthew (3:3), Luke (3:4), and John (1:23) all refer to as coming from 'Isaiah the prophet' caused a scribe to perfect what was, to him, the vague wording of Mark, 'in the prophets'. What the early scribe/editor failed to realize was that Mark was actually quoting two or three prophets in addition to the famous words that all the Gospel writers record. Classic case of harmonization by the minority, including a good minority of the Byzantine MSS (!).
     
  18. Deacon

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    Byzantine Priority is an unproven theory.
    You've spun an evolutionary story, interesting but unprovable.
    All that's really needed is one early Byzantine text,
    Unfortunately there aren’t any.

    The first witness to the phrase “in the prophets” (in Mark 1:2) is eight hundred years after the original text was written (9th century)
    The first Byzantine witness is centuries later.
    But two fourth century manuscripts (and two others from the 8th and 9th centuries) show a different text.

    Mark 1:2 displays the importance of footnoting the variants!

    Rob
     
  19. Bluefalcon

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    Problem with your view is that two MSS, W and A, but 50 and 100 years after the earliest Egyptian MSS, respectively, cite with the vast majority of all MSS and have 'in the prophets'. The direction of change is most likely harmonization by the minority to the more familiar reading in all the other Gospels, i.e., to 'in Isaiah the prophet' from 'in the prophets', the former of which which also sounds more accurate, but actually is not.
     
  20. Bluefalcon

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    Maybe you should cut and paste more accurate information from the Internet when you deal with the text of Scripture, because what you state above is completely false. Codex Alexandrinus reads "in the prophets" and is 5th century, which makes it at most 400 years or so after the "original" was written. Codex Freerianus also reads "in the prophets" and is also 5th century but dated close to the year 400 by current scholarship, which basically means it was copied only 50 years after the earliest MS of any kind for this passage (Mk 1:2).

    The internal and external evidence dominates for the "in the prophets" reading, which is dissimilar from all the other Gospels, and thus presented scribes with a reason to harmonize it to the standard form and furthermore to attempt to make precise what seemed to them a bit imprecise.
     

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