[b-greek] Re: New Testament Jehovah Quotes

From: Jan Groenveld (jan.groenveld@uq.net.au)
Date: Fri Sep 15 2000 - 23:35:44 EDT

On Fri, 15 Sep 2000 GregStffrd@aol.com wrote:

> Yes. In fact, all pre-second century CE LXX manuscripts that preserve a
> translated portion of the Hebrew text where the divine name occurs, also use
> a form of the divine name. Thus, there is a very strong likelihood that the
> original NT docs also used a form of the divine name, as the evidence we have
> shows that all sources used by the NT authors when quoting the OT contained
> some form of the divine name.
> Of course, the later Christian LXX mss. do not use the divine name, so it is
> really no surprise to find later NT mss. similarly without use of the divine
> name. The question we have to ask is, if they removed the divine name from
> what was considered inspired Scripture (the LXX), then what would keep these
> same persons from doing the same thing to NT docs, many of which were not
> placed on equal footing with the LXX?
Greg, some would disagree with you here:

"The Septuagint (LXX) contained the Tetragrammaton"

The WTS wishes to give the impression that the LXX used by the Christian Church
regularly contained the Tetragram. However, the LXX copies come from Jewish
sources, apart from two LXX copies that come from a source of doubtful origin,
possibly Jewish, or of a Jewish form of Christianity.

Extant versions of the Septuagint coming to us from Jewish sources contain the
Tetragrammaton in ancient script whereas only two Septuagint copies that contain
the Tetragrammaton may have possibly been of a Christian source.[4] But these
"Christian" sources were of:

         "a Jewish form of Christianity (that) persisted in Oxyrhynchus, and a
         possible explanation of these two eccentric texts would be that they
         were the work of Jewish-Christian scribes." [5]

The Codex P. Oxy. vii, 1007, referred to in the Foreword of the Kingdom
Interlinear on page 15, provides no evidence to support the WTS, since it cannot
definitely be established that it is from a Christian source. Paul Kahle, in his
work CAIRO GENIZA, page 247, reckons it to be Jewish, although C.R. Roberts is a
little more conciliatory, saying that it has "a claim to be regarded either as
Christian or Jewish". Its origin must be considered, according Roberts, to be
"puzzling". [6]

Other material mentioned in the Foreword is most definitely of Jewish and not of
Christian origin. These include:

- P. Fouad Inv. 266 (KIT Foreword, pages 12-14, Roberts, p. 75)

- P.Oxy. iv. 656 (KIT Foreword, page 15, footnote "C". Roberts, p. 76-77
states: "The text has a number of unique readings which may point to a revision
of the LXX".)

The WTS omits to mention "another text in the same category...P.Oxy.ix. 1166".
In this papyrus roll of Genesis "KURIOS and THEOS are abbreviated in the usual
way It is more likely to be Christian than Jewish". [7]

From this evidence it is apparent that the Christian material exhibited
abbreviated forms of the Sacred Names, with the Tetragram being replaced by
abbreviated forms of KURIOS and THEOS, and that some Jewish renderings of the
LXX retained the Tetra gram.

Evidence of support for the WTS's case they are most definitely not. The NT is a
product of Christian thought and practice.

The conclusion that must be arrived at with our state of knowledge is that:

"We now know that the Greek Bible (or the LXX, the OT) text, as far as it was
translated by JEWS FOR JEWS did not translate the Divine name KYRIOS, but the
Tetragrammaton written with Hebrew or Greek letters was retained. ... It was the
Christians who replaced the Tetragrammaton by KYRIOS, when the divine name
written in Hebrew letters was not understood any more". [8]

It is the action of the CHRISTIANS that is of vital significance, not the
actions of the Jews, for it was the Christians who wrote and produced the
writings now called the New Testament.

The evidence is that the Christians replaced the Tetragram in the LXX (the
OT) with surrogates, and that in the writings they produced (the NT) the
Christians did not follow the Hebrew practice regarding the writing of Sacred
Names, but they developed their own forms in their very earliest years with a
technique now termed NOMINA SACRA.

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