Greek verses in Esther & Daniel


#1

Is there logic to the Protestant position of excluding the Greek portions of these books since they were obviously added to the original versions?


#2

Let me ask it a different way, because it is an interesting question.

Why ought we to include these Greek lines that clearly didn’t exist in the original text?

(The answer may be that they did exist in the original… I’m not highly learned on this particular subject).


#3

[quote=jlubeski]Is there logic to the Protestant position of excluding the Greek portions of these books since they were obviously added to the original versions?
[/quote]

The early Church (and most of the Jewish people in the known world) used the Septaugent – the Greek translation of the Bible from Alexandria. The reason for this was that Hebrew was a dead language (the language in Judea, the language Christ spoke was Aramaic.) But most people could read and write Greek, which was the Lingua Franca of the Eastern Mediterranean.) It was accepted as canonical by both Jews and early Christians, and included all the books of the Catholic Bible, as well as the “Greek portions” of Esther and Daniel…

Those books remained in the Bible for 1600 years – even Luther accepted them. They were part of the Geneva Bible – the first Protestant Bible in English, and were even part of the early Kimg James editions.


#4

Well I know that, but what about in the first place?

Daniel was written in Hebrew. So, when it was written in the first place, it didn’t have those verses. How do we know thost verses are inspired by God? When it comes to the rest of Scripture, we point out that the Original text was inspired and free of error, but that the manuscripts we have might have [a slight few] uninspired or potentially erroneous statements in the. Why are we not holding the same standard with Daniel?

Let me give an example. Most people here will be familiar with the Johaninne comma: “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” The Greek manuscripts which were translated into English do not contain the comma. However, when they were brought into the vernacular (English), this verse ended up in there somehow.

Well, the Hrebrew manuscripts which were translated into Greek did not contain these verses. Similar to the Johaninne comma, when these books were translated into the vernacular (Greek), they ended up in there.

How do we know that these verses aren’t just as erroneous as the comma? How do we know the Jews who put together the Septuagint didn’t make a mistake? It seems like the same situation to me.


#5

[quote=Lazerlike42]Well I know that, but what about in the first place?

Daniel was written in Hebrew. So, when it was written in the first place, it didn’t have those verses. How do we know thost verses are inspired by God? When it comes to the rest of Scripture, we point out that the Original text was inspired and free of error, but that the manuscripts we have might have [a slight few] uninspired or potentially erroneous statements in the. Why are we not holding the same standard with Daniel?
[/quote]

How do we know ANY book of the Bible is inspired? The Bible was not produced with a table of contents!!

The canon was approved by the only authority commissioned by God to teach His word, the Church. The Canon is what the Apostles and Apostolic Fathers accepted as canonical. There has been no General Revelation since – so on what basis would we reject what they accepted?

[quote=Lazerlike42]Let me give an example. Most people here will be familiar with the Johaninne comma: “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” The Greek manuscripts which were translated into English do not contain the comma. However, when they were brought into the vernacular (English), this verse ended up in there somehow.
[/quote]

The early Greek (and Hebrew) manuscripts had no commas, exclamation points, quotation marks, or any other form of punctuation. In fact, they didn’t even have spaces between words – they were written scripta continuosa.

To make matters worse, they were copied by the lector reading the manuscript, while the scribes copied down what they heard, without ever seeing the original.

[quote=Lazerlike42]Well, the Hrebrew manuscripts which were translated into Greek did not contain these verses. Similar to the Johaninne comma, when these books were translated into the vernacular (Greek), they ended up in there.
[/quote]

Which verses are we talking about here? The Gospel of John was written in the Koine (a form of Greek) and the lines you quoted above prove that.

[quote=Lazerlike42]How do we know that these verses aren’t just as erroneous as the comma? How do we know the Jews who put together the Septuagint didn’t make a mistake? It seems like the same situation to me.
[/quote]

We know the Apostles and the Apostolic Fathers accepted the Septaugent, and we have had no General Revelation since that would justify us in rejecting their teachings.

As a matter of fact, every time Jesus quotes the Bible in the gospels, it is the Septaugent He quotes. I don’t recall any verse where He says, “Hey, ya’ll, there’s too many books in this here Bible, and some of them are wrong.”


#6

Well, what about the other books of the Bible?

Although Moses is credited with writing the first five books of the Bible,** it is obvious that others also contributed** (especially since the Pentatuch records the death of Moses). So somebody clearly “added” additional material to the original text.

And, indeed, most Biblical scholars agree that most books of the Old Testament were written and added to over time.

Of course, when the additions are in the same language as the original, it’s not so obvious. The additions aren’t things that people “made up” - they are part of the oral history of the Jewish people that didn’t happen to be written down originally. Remember that the ancient Jews were (and many still are) strongly grounded in oral history.

When Jewish people started speaking Greek instead of Hebrew, they continued to pass down their same oral history, but in a different language. When somebody finally thought to write it down, he did so in Greek, because that was the common language he spoke.

** The Greek portions are just as much a part of these books as the additional Hebrew portions which have been added to the other books of the Old Testament.**


#7

[quote=Lazerlike42]Well I know that, but what about in the first place?

Daniel was written in Hebrew. So, when it was written in the first place, it didn’t have those verses. How do we know thost verses are inspired by God? When it comes to the rest of Scripture, we point out that the Original text was inspired and free of error, but that the manuscripts we have might have [a slight few] uninspired or potentially erroneous statements in the. Why are we not holding the same standard with Daniel?

Let me give an example. Most people here will be familiar with the Johaninne comma: “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” The Greek manuscripts which were translated into English do not contain the comma. However, when they were brought into the vernacular (English), this verse ended up in there somehow.
[/quote]

And has been in the Vulgate tradition of the text for over a thousand years. That doesn’t make it what the author wrote, though.

So with the verses in Esther that mention God - they’re secondary.

At this point, one begins to wonder what counts as a book, and what counts as an addition to it. Quite a few books took a good while to finalise - Isaiah is a case in point. The Greek and Hebrew texts of Jeremiah are different, as are the Greek and Hebrew of 1 Samuel.

Jerome aspired to get back to the Hebraica veritas - the Septuagint is, after all, only a version; just like the Vulgate. Which is why Catholic versions of the OT are no longer made from the versions, venerable as they may be, but from the Hebrew (& Aramaic & Greek where applicable; which is not very often, in the OT) ##

Well, the Hrebrew manuscripts which were translated into Greek did not contain these verses. Similar to the Johaninne comma, when these books were translated into the vernacular (Greek), they ended up in there.

How do we know that these verses aren’t just as erroneous as the comma? How do we know the Jews who put together the Septuagint didn’t make a mistake? It seems like the same situation to me.


#8

[quote=DavidFilmer]Well, what about the other books of the Bible?

Although Moses is credited with writing the first five books of the Bible,** it is obvious that others also contributed** (especially since the Pentatuch records the death of Moses). So somebody clearly “added” additional material to the original text.

And, indeed, most Biblical scholars agree that most books of the Old Testament were written and added to over time.

Of course, when the additions are in the same language as the original, it’s not so obvious. The additions aren’t things that people “made up” - they are part of the oral history of the Jewish people that didn’t happen to be written down originally. Remember that the ancient Jews were (and many still are) strongly grounded in oral history.

When Jewish people started speaking Greek instead of Hebrew, they continued to pass down their same oral history, but in a different language. When somebody finally thought to write it down, he did so in Greek, because that was the common language he spoke.

** The Greek portions are just as much a part of these books as the additional Hebrew portions which have been added to the other books of the Old Testament.**
[/quote]

I wrote my original question before bed last night. When I woke up this morning, very same explaination you wrote above was clear in my mind. Had I gone to bed without first asking my question on this forum, I would never have asked it today. Today the answer is clear in my mind and these added sections are as much inspired as the original.


#9

Well, I think it was a great question…It clarified my own thinking on this subject & I thank you for asking, & for the answers your question generated.
A little clarity is always a good thing…


#10

[quote=Lazerlike42]Let me ask it a different way, because it is an interesting question.

Why ought we to include these Greek lines that clearly didn’t exist in the original text?

(The answer may be that they did exist in the original… I’m not highly learned on this particular subject).
[/quote]

They are included because they were part of the canon of Scripture since the 4th. century AD. When the NT was compiled, the Old was compiled as well. 73 books.


#11

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