Re: Ps. 95:10, the LXX's interpolation 'from a tree.'

From: Rod Bias (
Date: Fri May 03 1996 - 08:32:40 EDT

Mr. Timothy T. Dickens wrote:

> The problem
> remaining, nonetheless, is Psalm 96:10 (LXX 95:10) does not read
> with the interpolation ". . . from a tree." I expected to see at
> least a mention of the interpolation in the textual apparatus; but
> there was none.
> Thus, besides the information that we have from Justin Martyr
> showing that the interpolation existed, where is the biblical
> manuscript evidence (textual witnesses) supporting, at least, a
> variant reading 'from a tree' being used?


        No extant LXX MSS carry the words "from the tree." In fact, Justin (q.v.) accuses the Jews
of "erasing" those very words from their copies of Scripture. From this, one might speculate that
even in Justin's day (A.D. 150), many (the majority?) of MSS did not contain the words. Did Justin
have one of the few copies with the gloss? Who knows? Perhaps he was relying on a manuscript of
excerpts (compendium of "prooftexts") which inaccurately inserted the key phrase. If so, perhaps no
LXX ever contained the words -- despite Justin's honest belief to the contrary. Like the KJV of
I_John 5:7 used as prooftext for the Trinity, this alledged passage from the LXX was too good to
pass up: "YHWH reigns ... from the tree." What more could an apologist want?


Rodney L. Bias (602) 438-9202 4648 East Saint Catherine Avenue Phoenix, Arizona 85040-5369 USA

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