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  #1  
Old Feb 5, '13, 3:38 am
GodHeals GodHeals is offline
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Default What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

Hi,
What Jewish sects used the Septuagint? I have heard the Ethiopian Jews still use the Septuagint. Others?
Thanks,
Brian
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  #2  
Old Feb 5, '13, 9:43 am
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

From what little understanding I have, Jewish "sects" didn't use or not use the Septuagint. Jews in general used it. Our Lord used it.
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  #3  
Old Feb 5, '13, 9:52 am
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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From what little understanding I have, Jewish "sects" didn't use or not use the Septuagint. Jews in general used it. Our Lord used it.
My understanding is that most of the Jews in the Roman Empire were Greek-speakers, with Hebrew as a liturgical language, much like Latin was the language of the Church. So Greek was the language of the Church, even in the West, until after the 4th century.
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Old Feb 5, '13, 2:43 pm
patrick457 patrick457 is offline
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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From what little understanding I have, Jewish "sects" didn't use or not use the Septuagint. Jews in general used it. Our Lord used it.
We don't know about Jesus, since we don't have any tape recordings of His words. Our Lord could have very well used an Aramaic targum IRL, while the evangelists just provided the approximate quote from the Old Greek.
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Old Feb 5, '13, 2:49 pm
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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My understanding is that most of the Jews in the Roman Empire were Greek-speakers, with Hebrew as a liturgical language, much like Latin was the language of the Church. So Greek was the language of the Church, even in the West, until after the 4th century.
In Palestine at least, Aramaic steadily began to gain ground at the beginning of the Hellenistic age (around 330 BC) because of its importance in Persian imperial administration and the commercial contacts which went with it. Hebrew was still maintaining itself despite this: it was still possible to write original literature in Late Biblical Hebrew, and it continued so down to the 1st century. Meanwhile the colloquial form of Hebrew, the basis of Middle Hebrew, was also taking hold in certain quarters. The Hebrew language's decline was actually averted (rather ironically) by the arrival of Greek, and the total swing in the political balance that accompanied it, which substantially reduced the value and attractiveness of Aramaic, especially from the viewpoint of social, cultural and commercial leadership.

By the time of Jesus, most people in Palestine did speak Aramaic as a daily language (it was strong in northern areas like the Galilee), although there were there were still communities in the Judaean countryside who spoke colloquial Hebrew. (There were also pockets of Hebrew elsewhere, and a considerable representation of Aramaic even in the south, so boundary lines are hard to draw.) Greek was probably strong in the Galilee and the north, and also in the coastal towns; but there is also adequate evidence for considerable knowledge of Greek in Judaea.
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Old Feb 6, '13, 9:43 pm
RobbyS RobbyS is offline
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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In Palestine at least, Aramaic steadily began to gain ground at the beginning of the Hellenistic age (around 330 BC) because of its importance in Persian imperial administration and the commercial contacts which went with it. Hebrew was still maintaining itself despite this: it was still possible to write original literature in Late Biblical Hebrew, and it continued so down to the 1st century. Meanwhile the colloquial form of Hebrew, the basis of Middle Hebrew, was also taking hold in certain quarters. The Hebrew language's decline was actually averted (rather ironically) by the arrival of Greek, and the total swing in the political balance that accompanied it, which substantially reduced the value and attractiveness of Aramaic, especially from the viewpoint of social, cultural and commercial leadership.

By the time of Jesus, most people in Palestine did speak Aramaic as a daily language (it was strong in northern areas like the Galilee), although there were there were still communities in the Judaean countryside who spoke colloquial Hebrew. (There were also pockets of Hebrew elsewhere, and a considerable representation of Aramaic even in the south, so boundary lines are hard to draw.) Greek was probably strong in the Galilee and the north, and also in the coastal towns; but there is also adequate evidence for considerable knowledge of Greek in Judaea.
Palestine went to Ptolomey after the death of Alexander, which is why so many Jews gravitated to the new city of Alexandria, which is why the Scriptures were translated into Greek in that city. IAC. the dispersion of the Jews is an amazing story. China, India, and to the Western med and south in to Africa.
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Old Feb 6, '13, 10:30 pm
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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Palestine went to Ptolomey after the death of Alexander, which is why so many Jews gravitated to the new city of Alexandria, which is why the Scriptures were translated into Greek in that city. IAC. the dispersion of the Jews is an amazing story. China, India, and to the Western med and south in to Africa.
Yehud was on the frontier of the Ptolemaic and the Seleucid kingdoms at Alexander's death in 322 BC, and so it changed it hands for quite a number of times (cf. the Syrian Wars) before it definitively became a Seleucid vassal state after the Battle of Panium.
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  #8  
Old Feb 7, '13, 6:39 am
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

There are some Septuagint manuscripts among the Dead Sea Scrolls. Its assumed by many that the Essenes were the ones who hid many of the DSS. I transcribed the Greek manuscripts of the Minor Prophets, in which I lined them up with the Rahfs LXX and they are very close and close enough in my view to be considered Septuagint.
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  #9  
Old Feb 7, '13, 3:40 pm
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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There are some Septuagint manuscripts among the Dead Sea Scrolls. Its assumed by many that the Essenes were the ones who hid many of the DSS. I transcribed the Greek manuscripts of the Minor Prophets, in which I lined them up with the Rahfs LXX and they are very close and close enough in my view to be considered Septuagint.
Most of the Greek texts found in Qumran come from cave 4 and cave 7. Identified Greek texts found in cave 4 are mainly translations of Torah (for example, 4Q119 aka 4QLXXLeva and 4Q120 aka 4QpapLXXLevb, which are fragments of Leviticus, or 4Q122 aka 4QLXXDeut, Deuteronomy). Cave 7, in fact, had nothing but Greek texts written on papyrus, but most of these are too fragmentary to be identified precisely, leading to all sorts of speculation. (The texts which a few people allege were fragments of the NT are from cave 7.) The only two fragments in which many are in a consensus are 7Q1 aka papLXXEx (Exodus 28) and 7Q2 aka papLXXEpJer (the Letter of Jeremiah).

That being said, there is no proof that Greek was actively used by the Qumran sectarians. Based on the fragments of the Old Greek LXX found in those caves, it is possible that some of them knew Greek. But cave 4 probably served as a depository of some kind (not a library) in which the sectarians placed all their written texts (mainly Hebrew and Aramaic literary works, but also tefillin and mezuzoth). The depository in cave 4 contained eight Greek texts, which may signify that the person(s) who brought these texts to Qumran had used them prior to their arrival, thus implying knowledge of Greek. However it is not impossible that these texts directly came from an archive. The evidence does not suggest that the Greek texts from cave 4 were written, read or consulted at Qumran. As for cave 7, the contents of that cave, which was possibly used for lodging or as a workplace, were probably brought directly to the cave from an archive outside Qumran or from a specific site within the Qumran compound. No relation between the Greek texts of caves 4 and 7 need to be assumed, and there is no reason to believe that any of these texts was found in Qumran.

More Greek texts were found elsewhere in the Judaean desert: Wadi Daliyeh (1 + [undeciphered]), Jericho (17 and several fragments), Wadi en-Nar (2), Wadi Ghweir (1), Wadi Murabba'at aka Naḥal Darga (71), Wadi Sdeir aka Naḥal David (2), Naḥal Ḥever aka Wadi Khabra (32 from cave 5/6; 2 from cave 8; 21, and many unidentified fragments from "XḤev/Se" and "Ḥev/Se"?), Naḥal Ṣe'elim aka Wadi Seiyal (2), Naḥal Mishmar aka Wadi Mahras (1), and Masada (remains of probably 11 texts [a few in either Greek or Latin] and several fragments). When we compare Qumran to these sites, we could see that the situation is different. In most sites, all the Greek texts (and in Wadi Murabba'at and Masada, the great majority) are documentary, showing that Greek was actively used among the persons who deposited the texts. These texts include documents showing that the administration was conducted in Greek in the provinces of Syria, Arabia, and Judaea, and that letters were written in that language (cf. the Greek letters written by Bar Kokhba's followers from the Cave of Letters in Naḥal Ḥever). The difference between these sites and Qumran is partly chronological (most of the sites in the Judaean Desert are from a later period than Qumran), but more so in content: the Qumran corpus is mainly religious, which at that time would involve only Scriptural texts in Greek and not other compositions.

P.S. I should note that the Minor Prophets scroll (8ḤevXII gr) comes not from Qumran, but from Naḥal Ḥever. The Naḥal Ḥever scroll actually seems to have been systematically 'corrected' to correspond more closely to the proto-Masoretic Text; even the ordering of the prophets follows the traditional Hebrew order, not that of the Septuagint. The fact that this scroll was found among the remains of Bar Kokhba's followers, linked to the Jeursalem religious circles, is not without importance. It probably implies that this text had the imprimatur of the rabbinic circles.
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  #10  
Old Feb 8, '13, 2:53 am
GodHeals GodHeals is offline
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

The reason for asking is because the Catholic Church points out how often the New Testament quote from the Septuagint, which is said to be used by the Jews. So, far, i think I've only read the Ethiopian Jews used it. Any direct answers or leads would be helpful.

I guess I envision the Apostles walking around with the Septuagint like Protestants carry their bibles to church. But i would imagine not many people could read it or there might not have been many copies or they might have been written on BIG SCROLLS? But thinking about what little i know about Jewish culture and tradition, the Jews would spend much time teaching their children about God and the OT and the OTHER JEWISH WRITINGS (Talmud?) and participated in all of the feasts. I think the Catholic Church with the Calendar of feast days helps to see the Jewishness of the Catholic Church in its practice, being a fuller immersion into the fullness of the faith than what Protestants are able to do.

Thank you!

What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?
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  #11  
Old Feb 8, '13, 4:39 am
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

Quote:
Originally Posted by patrick457 View Post
Most of the Greek texts found in Qumran come from cave 4 and cave 7. Identified Greek texts found in cave 4 are mainly translations of Torah (for example, 4Q119 aka 4QLXXLeva and 4Q120 aka 4QpapLXXLevb, which are fragments of Leviticus, or 4Q122 aka 4QLXXDeut, Deuteronomy). Cave 7, in fact, had nothing but Greek texts written on papyrus, but most of these are too fragmentary to be identified precisely, leading to all sorts of speculation. (The texts which a few people allege were fragments of the NT are from cave 7.) The only two fragments in which many are in a consensus are 7Q1 aka papLXXEx (Exodus 28) and 7Q2 aka papLXXEpJer (the Letter of Jeremiah).

That being said, there is no proof that Greek was actively used by the Qumran sectarians. Based on the fragments of the Old Greek LXX found in those caves, it is possible that some of them knew Greek. But cave 4 probably served as a depository of some kind (not a library) in which the sectarians placed all their written texts (mainly Hebrew and Aramaic literary works, but also tefillin and mezuzoth). The depository in cave 4 contained eight Greek texts, which may signify that the person(s) who brought these texts to Qumran had used them prior to their arrival, thus implying knowledge of Greek. However it is not impossible that these texts directly came from an archive. The evidence does not suggest that the Greek texts from cave 4 were written, read or consulted at Qumran. As for cave 7, the contents of that cave, which was possibly used for lodging or as a workplace, were probably brought directly to the cave from an archive outside Qumran or from a specific site within the Qumran compound. No relation between the Greek texts of caves 4 and 7 need to be assumed, and there is no reason to believe that any of these texts was found in Qumran.

More Greek texts were found elsewhere in the Judaean desert: Wadi Daliyeh (1 + [undeciphered]), Jericho (17 and several fragments), Wadi en-Nar (2), Wadi Ghweir (1), Wadi Murabba'at aka Naḥal Darga (71), Wadi Sdeir aka Naḥal David (2), Naḥal Ḥever aka Wadi Khabra (32 from cave 5/6; 2 from cave 8; 21, and many unidentified fragments from "XḤev/Se" and "Ḥev/Se"?), Naḥal Ṣe'elim aka Wadi Seiyal (2), Naḥal Mishmar aka Wadi Mahras (1), and Masada (remains of probably 11 texts [a few in either Greek or Latin] and several fragments). When we compare Qumran to these sites, we could see that the situation is different. In most sites, all the Greek texts (and in Wadi Murabba'at and Masada, the great majority) are documentary, showing that Greek was actively used among the persons who deposited the texts. These texts include documents showing that the administration was conducted in Greek in the provinces of Syria, Arabia, and Judaea, and that letters were written in that language (cf. the Greek letters written by Bar Kokhba's followers from the Cave of Letters in Naḥal Ḥever). The difference between these sites and Qumran is partly chronological (most of the sites in the Judaean Desert are from a later period than Qumran), but more so in content: the Qumran corpus is mainly religious, which at that time would involve only Scriptural texts in Greek and not other compositions.

P.S. I should note that the Minor Prophets scroll (8ḤevXII gr) comes not from Qumran, but from Naḥal Ḥever. The Naḥal Ḥever scroll actually seems to have been systematically 'corrected' to correspond more closely to the proto-Masoretic Text; even the ordering of the prophets follows the traditional Hebrew order, not that of the Septuagint. The fact that this scroll was found among the remains of Bar Kokhba's followers, linked to the Jeursalem religious circles, is not without importance. It probably implies that this text had the imprimatur of the rabbinic circles.
As for 8HevXIIgr, which I am quite familar with, I am aware that some scholars say that it is a revised form of the LXX, but when I studied it I was never convinced that it was no different than other LXX manuscripts because they all have just as many variant readings among them, other than replacing Kurios with the Hebrew Yaweh. Even the Alexandrinus, Sinaiticus, and Vaticanus have a great deal of variants among themselves, and no more than what the DSS ms has. I will post a link later on my project that I did a few years ago where I lined 8HevXIIgr with Rahlfs LXX and with Theodotion, Aquilas, and Symmachus.
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  #12  
Old Feb 8, '13, 5:22 am
patrick457 patrick457 is offline
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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As for 8HevXIIgr, which I am quite familar with, I am aware that some scholars say that it is a revised form of the LXX, but when I studied it I was never convinced that it was no different than other LXX manuscripts because they all have just as many variant readings among them, other than replacing Kurios with the Hebrew Yaweh. Even the Alexandrinus, Sinaiticus, and Vaticanus have a great deal of variants among themselves, and no more than what the DSS ms has. I will post a link later on my project that I did a few years ago where I lined 8HevXIIgr with Rahlfs LXX and with Theodotion, Aquilas, and Symmachus.
I actually find the whole issue of LXX variants to be more confusing: you have stuff like the Old Greek, the Lucianic, the Hexaplaric, the Hesychian, the Kaige, the Kaige-Th, etc.

If I'm getting this right (I'm not totally 100% sure with what I'll be writing, so corrections welcome), the Old Greek (OG) is the original. Between the original production of the LXX and the Greek versions of the 2nd century there were two early revisions. The earlier, dating from perhaps the 1st century BC, is called "proto-Lucian" because it shares characteristics with the revision attributed to Lucian of Antioch (4th century AD). It is called proto-Lucian because some of the readings it shares with the later Lucianic recension are reflected in both Josephus (1st century) and the Vetus Latina (2nd century). This revision represents a sporadic correction of the Old Greek toward the Palestinian textual family represented by the three Samuel texts found at Qumran.

The later revision is called the Kaige after its habit of rendering the Hebrew word Hebrew ו)גם) "and also" as kai ge. It dates to the late 1st century BC or the early 1st century AD and its overall character is seen as a revision of the Old Greek in the direction of conformity with the ancestor of the Masoretic text. The revision is noted for its use of stock renderings of particular Hebrew words and phrases (of which kai ge is one) that seem to be chosen primarily to give Greek readers a sense of what was in the original Hebrew, with little concern for whether the resulting translation was idiomatic Greek. A Kaige text which shows close relation to another revision of the Septuagint attributed to Theodotion (end of 2nd century) is called Kaige-Theodotion (Kaige-Th): the Naḥal Ḥever scroll is a Kaige-Th text. The extremely-literal Greek translation produced by Aquila of Sinope (ca. AD 140) was apparently influenced by Kaige-Th and is the the fullest expression of the tendency to harmonize the Greek with the Hebrew. Then there's Theodotion's freer translation.
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Old Feb 9, '13, 3:59 pm
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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Hi,
What Jewish sects used the Septuagint? I have heard the Ethiopian Jews still use the Septuagint. Others?
Thanks,
Brian
The Septuagint was used by the Ethiopian Jews as you mentioned and the Greek-speaking Jews in the diaspora (not really a sect, however). The Essenes used some of the deuterocanonical books but not the Septuagint.
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  #14  
Old Feb 10, '13, 1:17 pm
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

The Septuagint was translated and compiled specifically for use among the Diaspora since many if not most of the Diaspora no longer used Hebrew in speach, worship/liturgy.

Jesus was a Palestinian Jew who spoke and read Aramaic and pershaps conversant in Hebrew. The Septuagint was for Greek speaking Jews of the Diaspora...Jesus was neither.
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Old Feb 10, '13, 11:09 pm
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Default Re: What Jewish sects used the Septuagint?

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Yehud was on the frontier of the Ptolemaic and the Seleucid kingdoms at Alexander's death in 322 BC, and so it changed it hands for quite a number of times (cf. the Syrian Wars) before it definitively became a Seleucid vassal state after the Battle of Panium.
The connection with Egypt was on-going, from Abraham onwards. And of course Jeremiah died in exile in Egypt/on the way there, after the Babylonians carted off the Jews in to Mesopotamia.
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