Greek vs. Aramaic


Well, I was talking with some Protestants the other day. The subject of the papacy came up and, predictably, someone tried the “petros vs. petra” eisegesis. I explained that in Aramaic the word is simply “kepha”. But they insisted that Jesus actually would have spoken Greek (and later said that Mel’s Passion was inaccurate, because Jesus spoke Greek instead of Aramaic).

I had never encountered this argument before. Where can I find good historical evidence that Aramaic was spoken rather than Greek by Jesus?


Just look at where Paul refers to Peter as Cephas in 1 Corinthians 1:12 and Galations 2:9. Cephas is the Grecofication of Kepha. If Jesus spoke Greek, why wouldn’t Peter be known as Petros and not Cephas? You can also point to John 1:42, where it says he was named Cephas (Kepha), translated as Peter.


Try "Tabitha, litha cum"in Mark, “Abba” in the Lord’s prayer, “Cephas” in John 1:42, and “Eli, eli, lama sabacthani?” in Matthew’s passion narrative.


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