Textus Receptus / Alexandrian text

Discussion in 'Other Christian Denominations' started by Huron, Jan 31, 2006.

  1. Huron

    Huron
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2006
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was wondering if anyone could comment on the current status of the Textus Receptus / Alexandrian debate. I had heard that the TR was coming back in favor, and that the arguments for codex Vaticanus and codex Sinaiticus were somewhat blunted. Can anyone bring me up to speed?

    Regards,

    Mike
     
  2. nate

    nate
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    811
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think it's the Byzantinte text that's becoming more popular. The TR is actually filled with errors. But the critical texts are still viewed as being the best representation of the overall Greek text.
     
  3. Huron

    Huron
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2006
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Nate,

    Thanks for correcting my error. It is the Byzantine Text that has become more popular. It's mentioned in the preface of my NKJV. Since that was printed in 1993, I was wondering if the tide is still turning in favor of the Byzantine, and indirectly the TR.

    Regards,

    Mike
     
  4. DeclareHim

    DeclareHim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2004
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    0
    I think there are now more than ever at least since 1880's. Scholars are accepting the Byzantine text form as being a legitamate text. The TR has several additions not supported by the Byzantine text: Luke 17:36,Acts 8:37, and 1 John 5:7-8. And is still viewed as being a sub-par text.
     
  5. steaver

    steaver
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2004
    Messages:
    9,005
    Likes Received:
    82
    I always wondered how can we know which ones are best if we have no originals to compare them to? What declares one better than another or for that matter either one correct?

    God Bless!
     
  6. DeclareHim

    DeclareHim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2004
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    0
    There is a method (textual criticism) that helps us determine the most probable original reading. We have over 5,600 fragments of the NT more than any other work in all of history. For instance about 20% of Homer's Illiad is not certain(there are only 700 copies of Homers work extant today). Compare that to the NT of which only 1.5% of the text is truely in question. And none of the sections in question effect doctrine. Certain Papyri date back to just within 25 years of the last book of the NT. We have 3 very valuable manuscripts that date back to the 4-5 Centuries that contain the complete text. So it's more than reasonable to say with a great amount of certainty that we have the true text of the NT today. Also God has preserved it for us today.
     
  7. Huron

    Huron
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2006
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    As DeclareHim pointed out, that is where textual criticism comes in. A really good book on the subject is "The Text of the New Testament: Its Transmission, Corruption, and Restoration" by Bruce M. Metzger. It's available on amazon.com.
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/019516122X/sr=1-1/qid=1138788021/ref=sr_1_1/102-2027206-9642532?%5Fencoding=UTF8

    Mike
     
  8. Boanerges

    Boanerges
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2005
    Messages:
    591
    Likes Received:
    0
    As DeclareHim pointed out, that is where textual criticism comes in. A really good book on the subject is "The Text of the New Testament: Its Transmission, Corruption, and Restoration" by Bruce M. Metzger. It's available on amazon.com.
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/019516122X/sr=1-1/qid=1138788021/ref=sr_1_1/102-2027206-9642532?%5Fencoding=UTF8

    Mike
    </font>[/QUOTE]I do not know if you are aware of this, but the person who worked on the above book you cited with Metzger, has denied the validity of the New Testament and Christ, and has even wrote a book calling the validity of the New Testament into question titled "Misquoting Jesus". His name is Bart Ehrman.
     
  9. Huron

    Huron
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2006
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    I checked out the link on Amazon. Looks like you are correct about Ehrman. Makes you wonder. On the one hand, I have always admired Metzger's scholarship. On the other hand, I've always wondered how he could be involved with the NRSV!

    Mike
     
  10. Boanerges

    Boanerges
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2005
    Messages:
    591
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bart Ehrman once believed in Christ and the scriptures. Through his intellectual journeys, he ended up denying this based on what he percieved as errors in the Greek text. I believe that this occured while he was working under Metzger at Princeton. You know what the scriptures say. We are to have nothing to do with Bart Ehrman until he repents of his teaching against the NT and Christ.If Metzger is walking with Ehrman knowing his convictions, then the same goes for Metzger and his opinions as well.Either we as believers are subject to the authority of scripture, or this is just a free for all.
     
  11. Brother James

    Brother James
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    This statement from a Presbyterian church pretty much describes my position on this issue:

    Bible Versions

    http://wwwhpcministry.org/article.php?ArticleID=31

    With so many versions of the Bible available today to the English speaking world, many Christians wonder which one is best. When the number of versions offered is so large and varied, it can have an unsettling effect upon one who is careful to have the most accurate version to feed his or her soul. While marketing (financial gain) is probably the primary reason for all these versions, there is another issue that is more serious. This issue is the integrity of the Word of God itself. The issue of integrity involves two aspects: 1) the translation philosophy; and 2) the text from which the translation is made.

    In short, translation philosophy can fall under one of two major headings which articulate the method of translating from the original languages in which the Bible was given (Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek). The first method is called formal equivalence and the second is called dynamic equivalence. Formal equivalence seeks to make a word-for-word equivalent translation accurate to the text and language of the original language (e.g. Greek) into the target language (e.g. English). Dynamic equivalence is a more fluid translation and seeks to accurately reproduce the text with the correct thought of the author. Dynamic equivalence takes more liberty in interpreting the text into the target language. While a version of dynamic equivalence (e.g. NIV) may read more easily, or certain passages may seem clearer, than a formal equivalent text, it often misleads the reader by the interpretation of the translator which may not be the accurate interpretation at all. For instance, in 2 Corinthians 5:14, the phrase in the KJV is “the love of Christ constraineth us . . .” This phrase is a literal translation of a genitive construct and could mean “Christ love for me constraineth . . .” or “my love for Christ constraineth . . .” Either way is a valid interpretation of the text that the reader will have to wrestle with to determine which best fits the context. However, the NIV translates this phrase more liberally, “Christ’s love compels us . . .” What the translators of the NIV have done is choose for the reader what interpretation they think this phrase means and built the interpretation right into the translation.

    While we happen to agree on this particular passage that the NIV is correct, the point is that the NIV does not allow the reader to interpret the passage for himself, and in some cases the NIV will choose the wrong interpretation and the reader will be completely unaware, and therefore, unable to interpret Scripture for himself. To some degree, this principle removes the priesthood of the believer which is a key tenet of Protestant doctrine. For this reason the leadership at Heritage does not recommend the use of dynamic equivalent translations.

    The second issue of integrity involves the text from which translations are made. This is particularly true for the text of the NT. None of the original manuscripts (autograph) of either testament survives. We do, however, have many handwritten copies of the originals. The text of the NT Scripture does not exist in totality in one copy, so scholars have reconstructed the NT text from over 4000 NT copies.

    There exists three families of NT text reconstruction. First, the Received Text, which is also known as the Textus Receptus (TR) is the text from which our King James Version and New King James Version are based. Although the Textus Receptus was based on a few manuscripts that were available at the time, these were representative of far greater number of manuscripts later discovered.

    The second textual perspective is very close to the Textus Receptus, and for the most part they are the same text. This view is called the Majority Text and is based upon the consensus of the majority of the existing manuscripts. Since these first two texts are so close, I will equate them for the remainder of this article for the sake of simplicity, and refer to them as the Traditional Text (TT). This text has never been seriously challenged until late in the 19th century when two Cambridge scholars, B.F. Westcott and F. J. A. Hort replaced the Textus Receptus (or TT) text with a Critical Text.

    The principle that sustains the critical text position is not which text has been received by the majority of the Church through the ages, but a new principle of choosing what the scholars think are the best texts. A key canon in this method is using the oldest texts in existence. The idea may sound plausible since the older texts are closer to the originals in time and therefore more accurate. However, the entire principle is based not upon thousands of old texts found, or even hundreds, but upon two.

    The two main texts that Westcott and Hort used to reconstruct the NT text (Codex Vaticanus and Codex Sinaiticus) are known to be filled with errors, and were not received by the early Church because of them. Both internal evidence in the manuscripts themselves, and external evidence reveals these texts are greatly flawed. Biblical quotations from the early Church fathers are consistent with the Traditional Text, not the Critical Text. This is true for even the earliest fathers who predated any of the available manuscripts of the Traditional Text in existence. Therefore, the argument of antiquity does not mean that the oldest texts are always the best.

    Obviously then, the Church rejected the two main texts that Westcott and Hort used to construct a new Greek New Testament. What does all this have to do with Bible translations? Almost every modern English version available today has been translated from the Critical text. You will find many marginal notes in these modern versions that bring into question the integrity of the Word of God. For instance, in most (if not all) modern versions based upon the Critical Text, the last 12 verses of Mark are virtually omitted. While the English text is still there, it is footnoted. The marginal note reads, “some of the oldest manuscripts do not contain vv.9-20.” This kind of note is so frequent in the marginal notes of modern versions, that it can cause doubt in the reader’s mind to what is and is not the true Word of God.

    There are only two common and readily available translations that are translated from the Traditional Text and they are the KJV and the NKJV, both of which are Formal Equivalent translations. We at Heritage have standardized the ministry on a Traditional Text which means that the translations we use will either be a KJV or a NKJV.
     
  12. DeclareHim

    DeclareHim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2004
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    0
    This statement for all intents and purposes is not true. There are large differences between the TR and Majority text. The Majority text does not include: Acts 8:37, 1 John 5:7-8, Luke 17:36. To name a few. The TR is based on very few manuscripts and it truely is the critical text.
     
  13. Huron

    Huron
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2006
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    I definately understand your point. While I'd never buy an NRSV, I would have to say that Metzger's scholarship has to have some merit if his work was used by the translation committees of the NIV, and NASB which involved hundreds of scholars in the Biblical languages.

    When I read his book about the transmission / restoration of the Greek New Testament, I got the feeling that Metzger was very confident that God had preserved His word.

    Have you read any of Metzgers works?

    Regards,

    Mike
     
  14. Huron

    Huron
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2006
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    This statement for all intents and purposes is not true. There are large differences between the TR and Majority text. The Majority text does not include: Acts 8:37, 1 John 5:7-8, Luke 17:36. To name a few. The TR is based on very few manuscripts and it truely is the critical text. </font>[/QUOTE]Interestingly, my Thompson Chain NKJV is supposedly from the Majority text, but it DOES include Acts 8:37, and 1 John 5:7-8. However, it does have a footnote where it explains that the NU and M-Text don't include those verses.

    It does mention in the preface that "fully eighty five percent of the New Testament text is the same in the Textus Receptus, the Alexandrian Text, and the Majority Text."

    To comment on what DeclareHim mentioned about the TR being the critical text: Did you know that Erasmus WAS NOT originally going to include 1 John 5:7,8 in the TR. He finally reluctantly agreed that if someone could show him ONE greek manuscript that included it, then he would include it in the TR. One was found - he suspected that it was "made to order." To this day, it may be the only pre-TR manuscript that includes this verse!

    Mike
     
  15. DeclareHim

    DeclareHim
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    May 7, 2004
    Messages:
    1,062
    Likes Received:
    0
    Some editions of the NKJV claim they are translated from the Majority text but that is false. They just lump the TR in with the Majority text.

    Actually the first two editions of Erasmus's text did not include 1 John 5:7-8. It wasn't until the RCC sent him mss 61 which happens to date to the 16th Century. His third edition came out in 1520 or around that time period. I find the timing suspicious.
     
  16. Boanerges

    Boanerges
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2005
    Messages:
    591
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yes, I am familiar with Metzger. He appears to be an intelligent man who is standing with a foot on each side theologically. I have also reviewed Ehrmans work.
     
  17. Askjo

    Askjo
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2003
    Messages:
    3,736
    Likes Received:
    0
    The TR, that went back to the apostolic time, is number 1. That is how we got the KJV.
     
  18. Eliyahu

    Eliyahu
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2005
    Messages:
    4,762
    Likes Received:
    0
    I remember there was some comments on those statements or verses where Metzger made mistakes. Could anyone recall those ? Because I lost some of the memories in my Com.

    TR and Majority are within the range of tolerance, even though they differ each other.
     
  19. nate

    nate
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    811
    Likes Received:
    0
    The TR texts are closest to the Old Latin they disagree a good amount from the Byzantine. Check the Bible Versions forum to see just a list of Gospel of Matthew there is a good post up there now on this issue. I'm sure Metzger is not perfect because he is human. But I'de say the man know's his Greek and manuscripts. You may disagree with his conclusion but lets not question his knowledge to much.
     
  20. nate

    nate
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    811
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh BTW the TR agrees more with the Byzantine than with the Alexandrian texts by far.
     

Share This Page

Loading...