RE: The Septuaginta

From: Stevens, Charles C (
Date: Mon Aug 30 1999 - 16:21:50 EDT

On 30 August 1999 at 12:47PM, Steve Puluka submitted, in part:

<<The Eastern Orthodox jurisdictions and the Roman Catholic church hold the
LXX to be THE AUTHORITATIVE version for their respective churches.>>

While I was under the impression that this was true for the Orthodox
community, I was most definitely *not* aware of this startling fact about
Roman Catholicism.

Rather I was under the distinct impression that at least until quite
recently(1940's? 1950's? Vatican II?) the Roman Catholic church held the
Vulgate, for both old and new testaments, as authoritative. That
organization has since that time seemed to accept the original languages as
more authoritative.

Within the Apocrypha (Deuterocanonicals in RC terminology), some of the
texts are only (e.g., the prologue to Sirach) or primarily (e.g., the rest
of Sirach) available in Greek, and those of course are considered
authoritative because the Hebrew texts subsequently discovered corroborate
the validity of that text. Likewise, 1 Maccabees, while originally written
in Hebrew, survives only in the Greek, and 2 Maccabees was almost certainly
composed in Greek.

But as to the part of the OT accepted by Christians and Jews alike, my
distinct impression was that from the time of Jerome to the present, the
Roman Catholic Church treated the LXX as corroborative (earlier to the
Vulgate, now to the original texts), and I'm surprised indeed to learn

        -Chuck Stevens

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