[ Music ] was the original Septuagint lost by Christians. Welcome to another edition
of our series is Christianity, the Mormonism of Judaism, where we are examining the claims of the Jewish rabbis, who teach that Christianity has distorted the scriptures and the teachings of Judaism in much.
The same way that we Christians believe that Mormonism has distorted the teachings and the scriptures of Christianity. So today we’re going to be examining the Greek Septuagint the evidence for the Greek Septuagint having been preserved accurately in comparison to the Hebrew Masoretic text that is used by Jews today as a basis for the Jewish Bible and our Old Testament Scriptures That we find in the Christian Bibles are based on the Masoretic text, the mesmeric text.
As a reminder to those of you who may not have seen some of my other videos is a text that was compiled by the Jewish scribes between the seventh and tenth centuries. And what we note is significant textual differences between how the Hebrew texts of today reads.
In the Old Testament and how the New Testament quotations of the Old Testament Scriptures are rendered in passages where they’re quoting the Old Testament from the Greek Septuagint. The rabbi’s claim that the Christians have distorted the Septuagint, and so we’re going to be examining those claims today and evaluating the question is the Christian and New Testament use and quotation of the Greek Septuagint like Mormonism’s quotation of the King James Bible, in the Book of Mormon.
To begin this, this examination we’re going to watch a clip from a popular Jewish rabbi who makes these arguments and these claims against Christianity, the Christian Bible approximately claims to be quoting the Jewish Bible about 214 times don’t hold me to that number, but something close to that if Hebrews change the Word of God.
That means that the incredibility of the entire Christian Bible collapses and if therefore renders Christianity to be not just a mistaken religion but a criminal religion. It’s not serious. Okay, they better question what Christians do.
How do they deal with what they deal with? Is they they have the the go-to Septuagint? What they say is you Jews? You know that the writers are detestable copying from the Septuagint and you know it. I posit this to everything, Christian.
Okay, no translation can be superior to an original. The we do have, although the Septuagint is gone, was destroyed. We have that ancient historian styles. We know this, but the Talmud in tractate Nagila page folio 9, does quote 14 passages in from that original set to urgent that’s all we have we. The tongue would quotes 14 passages that the original translator is altered.
The Jews did because they did not want to get the Jews in trouble. I’m not gonna go into why now, but they were scared of certain passages that would be misunderstood by those who are in power, and the Talmud explains exactly how that Septuagint was altered of the five books of Moses and gives us 14 Examples I went, and I encouraged did always do this.
I said, let me look it up, so I had the Talmud here and I went to the Septuagint, which is available online, because the copyright is over a long time, and I found that of the fourteen quotes from the Talmud.
Only two of them are extent. 12 of them are gone. That means the translation. Doesn’t follow what we find at all, which means the everything almost everything of the five books of Moses was edited. The long wall later and redundantly done about what occurred is that all these recensions are were work then called Septuagint.
The term Septuagint became a genericized, which means any Greek translation of the Jewish Scriptures called the Septuagint, because the name is so popular. The most important person who is the contributing editor to the Septuagint of our hands is Origen.
He’s a third century theologian, a very important church, father soon. Others, Christians that as well, but the Septuagint in our hands, has nothing to do with the original Septuagint. Why would the holy spirit be appealing to a what turned out to be a complete corrupt translation? Why would the Holy Spirit even appeal to a not corrupt translation? In fact, my my Christian friends, I’m not trying to patronize you, but think think think one of the reasons if you ask the evangelization why don’t you believe in the Mormon religion.
Why don’t you take Joseph Smith word for it. Why don’t you think the Book of Mormon is reliable, but Christians will give you a number of reasons why Mormonism is a cult, is aberrant and is not a truly Christian religion? There are a number of reasons for it.
It doesn’t comport with the teachings of the New Testament, but you will also be told, and if you look, if you went to seminary – and you know anything, you know – I’m talking the truth, you will be told that as it turns out – and Christians laugh at this point – and I think rightfully so – that the Book of Mormon‘s original language, incidentally, is English.
Okay, we are told that Joseph Smith was by that by the Church of Latter-day Saints was a 19th century prophet that received from an angel a revelation in English, and he recorded it that way. Now evening, chuckles we’ll say to you.
We don’t believe in the Book of Mormon for a number of very important reasons. One of them is that the Book of Mormon quotes extensively from the
King James Bible. I believe about 25 chapters of The Book of Isaiah alone, a quoted verbatim from the King James and, incidentally, it’s not the King James that you opened today.
It’s the King James, the 1611 King James, that’s a 17th century English. Just take my word for it now. It would be very hard for you in English speaker to understand it, because that was what’s called written and that type of thing was called jacobi in English.
So you’re saying some Christians laugh at the notion that the angel Moroni was revealing the Book of Mormon Joseph Smith, using a King James Bible. Now, if you find that ridiculous, then why don’t you find this ridiculous?
Why not apply the same kind of standard to apply to rejecting more madness and why don’t you apply it here? The answer, the question is that if you reject Mormonism because for the Book of Mormon quotes from the King James Bible, which is ridiculous – and why do you find it credible that the writers of the Christian Bible, quoting from the Septuagint, but they don’t know Hebrew and if the book of he was written by a Paul, whoever rabbis don’t bother with translations, especially really bad ones.
Okay, what the rabbi said about the Greek Septuagint that we have today, not being what the first century Christians had when they were quoting the Old Testament Scriptures from the Greek Septuagint is only partially correct.
While it is true that Christians and different scholars had a part in editing the Greek Septuagint in the second and third centuries, that does not mean that they were distorting the text or corrupting the text.
In fact, quite the opposite is true. I’d like to read a little section from the book called The Biblical Canon by Lee Martin MacDonald, and we’re going to read on page 119, where he talks about the Greek Septuagint and it’s translation from the Hebrew text and the what was actually happening when they were editing the text. He says the original translation was of only the Pentateuch, but this changed in time, certainly before the first century.
Ce II as the prologue to serac shows. So I want to point out, first of all, the Greek Septuagint was completely translated before the first century, and this ancient document shows and demonstrates that it was in full operation, fully translated.
That includes not just the first five books of the Old Testament, but also the prophets and the other writings, the rest of the Tanakh that was fully translated before the first century CE II. As the prologue to see rock shows.
He goes on to state that k-killed notes that the reference to the involve ability of the Greek translation mentioned in the latter two era – steez 310 311 – was a way of speaking about its inspired status.
The letter of aresty shows the centrality of the Torah in the Jewish life, which also suggests that the prophets and writings had not yet attained the status of sacred Scripture. In other words, when the letter of Erised Eve’s was written.
What was included in the translation is what constituted the sacred and in volleyball writings of the Jews. This does not preclude the prophets, writings or other texts from being cited and used in the Jewish community of faith at the time, but certainly the law had special prominence for the Jews and it alone was translated into Greek initially.
So what is he saying here? He’s pointing out that the Jews were using the text of the prophets and the other writings of the Tanakh, but they had not fully considered those writings, Scripture and inspired by the time the Greek Septuagint translation was made, and this is primarily the Reason why the Septuagint only contained the first five books
of the Old Testament when it was originally translated from Hebrew into Greek.
But he goes on to note the evidence that the Septuagint was in full force is given in the prologue to serac and then he goes on. He says in the second century CE II, many Jews believed that the Septuagint translation had theological problems, and indeed various sections of the lxx are at significant odds within texts of the HB.
That is the Hebrew Bible. The difficulty of translating the Hebrew Scriptures into Greek was noted by the grandson of Sirach in his prologue. He says what was originally expressed in Hebrew does not have exactly the same sense when translated into another language, not only this book, but even the law itself.
The prophesies and the rest of the books differ not a little when read in the original end of quote. So here’s what McDonald concludes, he says corrective measures were taken at various times to bring the Greek translation into line with the Hebrew text.
Example, origins, hex, blah and Jerome’s Vulgate. So this is basically how the Septuagint came to be. We understand that originally, the Jews only regarded the first five books of the Old Testament as Scripture, even though they referenced and used the other books.
That eventually became the Bible, the scripture of the Jews, but because they only consider the first five books inspired Scripture. That is why the original translation only contained those first five books, but by the time of the first century, that translation had been expanded to include the entire Tanakh.
And we also see in here that by the second century, the people that were reading the Septuagint and studying it were noting the differences between how the Septuagint read and how the Hebrew text read and so beginning.
In the second century, corrective measures were taken to try to bring the Greek Septuagint into alignment with the Hebrew texts available at the time, and so this is precisely why we have a different reading in the Septuagint today, then, what is contained? Let’s say in some of the more ancient manuscripts of the Septuagint that were quoted in the Talmud, as demonstrated by the rabbi.
He was discussing those fourteen lines of text that were quoted in the Talmud, and he says these these Talmudic quotations of the Septuagint are not extant today, but this is exactly what we did. We would expect to find if indeed, the editors of the Septuagint were accurately working on trying to bring the Septuagint into alignment with a Hebrew text available to them at the time.
And if you remember what the Jewish rabbi said about the two mythic quotes of the original sub two urgent, it was the rabbi’s were actually discussing how they had distorted
their translation of those fourteen places in the Septuagint.
In order to hide the original text in the meaning from the governing authorities for fear of persecution, so they were actually distortions of the text. These fourteen lines that are given in the Talmud that were quoted from the original Septuagint were actual distortions or corruptions that the Jews had made in the text of their Old Testament, and so we would expect those corrections.
Those corruptions to have been corrected by the subsequent editors of the Septuagint. So this very example that the rabbi brings up actually supports the Christian position that the Septuagint is very accurate to the ancient Hebrew manuscripts and is an excellent resource to use.
When you’re trying to determine what how the original Hebrew text may have read in the first century, because those additions, those edits that were made to the text were actually corrections to make it align more with the Hebrew.
So the Septuagint that we have today is actually more accurate than the original Septuagint translation that existed prior to the corrections made by the Church, Fathers and the scholars in the second and third centuries.
And in fact, let’s read what MacDonald continues to say about the Septuagint editing process on page 120 of his book, The Biblical Canon he says, the text of the LXX, that is the Septuagint, is generally faithful to the Hebrew text.
But that probably came as a result of many later attempts to bring the lxx into line with the Hebrew sometime after the translation of the Pentateuch into Greek other OT writings were translated and by the end of the second century or early third century CE II.
The term LXX was transferred to all the literature that comprised the Greek Bible. The translation is uneven in quality best in the Pentateuch and worse in Isaiah, but it helped to meet the religious needs of the Jews in Alexandria and of the dispara Jews.
The LXX is also circulated throughout Palestine in the first century CE II. So here we see kind of what the rabbi was talking about. How many other translations of the Greek scriptures were all called LXX are all called Septuagint in the second and third centuries.
So, by the time we get to Jerome and various other church fathers and Origen, who had a part in editing the text of the Septuagint again to check the its quality with the Hebrew manuscripts and try to make it more correct.
This is exactly what we see and what we would expect to find those various like lines of text like the 14 texts that the Jewish rabbis admitted to distorting when they translated the Old Testament. The first five books of the Old Testament in their original translation of the Septuagint.
We would expect those those texts to be changed and to be brought into conformity with the Hebrew text of the second century.
When these additions, when these editors were working on the addition of the Septuagint, so while it is only partially correct that the Septuagint that we have today is not the original Septuagint that was translated by the Jews, that is only partially correct, because the translation was made better by these additions and those heirs in Texas that the Jewish rabbis, a minute to in the Talmud, were corrected to bring them into line with the Hebrew text available at the time.
This is precisely why the biblical scholars of today continued to consult the Greek Septuagint when they are looking at various passages in the Old Testament texts and trying to evaluate the textual variants that are existing in certain passages of the Old Testament.
Even this rabbi has admitted that the Old Testament text does can textual variants. He says it’s only about 99 percent accurate, even in the Hebrew Bible that the Jews and the Christians possessed today in the Masoretic manuscripts.
Even he admits that 99 percent of it is is accurate, but there is a 1 percent variation rate, and that’s from his own words. He recognizes the reality of textual variants that have occurred over time in the text of the Hebrew Scriptures and I’m going to show you right now, a chart that shows the various lines of text of the Septuagint, and I want you to know, on this chart, that most Hebrew scholars today believe that these lines of text are what we might call textual families that exist in many times are the translations of the Hebrew Scriptures actually have their sources in potentially three different variations of the Hebrew text.
So I want you to notice at the base of this chart that’s up on the screen. You can see the words lost at the very basis and then lost and a third word lost now. What this is showing. You are the family trees that comprise the text of our Hebrew Old Testament Scriptures on the right-hand side on the far right.
You see the words MT that stands for Masoretic text, that’s the Hebrew text that we have today that the mesmeric scribes gathered together between the seventh and tenth century, and that is primarily what our Hebrew Old Testament is based upon.
Today, however, there were several other manuscripts that form the basis of possibly three major lines of textual families. That sprang off from an
earlier manuscript that we do not have access to. We don’t have the readings to, but, as you know, once this on the far right is a Masoretic text.
Far right of this tree on the far left of this tree, we see LXX that’s the Septuagint and then the middle is another. What’s called loss? What they believe is a manuscript that kind of has a blend of the two sides that would they look at when they look at these textual variants that can categorize these textual variants into these families and they say lost right there in the middle.
You know what might have formed the basis of AK: Willis translation, Greek translation, I believe of the Hebrew text and the Latin Vulgate, Simic US and dear Theodosius translations. They believe there was possibly a Hebrew textual manuscript that was different from the one that became the basis of the Masoretic text on the far right hand, side of this page and one that became the basis of the lxx Greek Septuagint translation of the Hebrew.
So it’s important to recognize that when the scholars were looking at the Greek Septuagint in the second and third centuries and making translation Corrections or additions to try to bring it into line with the Hebrew text they had available today, they were likely relying upon Hebrew manuscripts that have now become what we call extent, which means they’re no longer available today, except we do see glimpses of these manuscript traditions when we look at the Dead Sea Scrolls, and so let’s look at some of the textual manuscripts that we can go back and evaluate in the Dead Sea Scrolls that lends support to the Greek Septuagint translation of the Hebrew text. I like to read on in this book from Lee Martin McDonald, The Biblical Canon on page 229.
He describes some of the textual variants that are found in the Dead Sea Scrolls. He says the Dead Sea Scrolls highlight the textual diversity that existed in the biblical Scrolls at the beginning of the Common Era.
Even if one accepts Tove’s original estimate that around 60 percent of the scrolls could be termed proto-Masoretic, that means only 60 percent of the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Hebrew readings could be considered proto Medes, retic proto MT, which means they were a precursor to what eventually became the Masoretic manuscripts that we use today.
He says, even if we accept his original estimate of 60 percent, it would still be necessary to account for the other 40 percent, and he has a footnote on this reference. If we read the footnote Tove in his textual criticism of the Hebrew Bible on page 115 in the second edition in 2001 of his book, Tove revised this estimate to only being 35 percent of the Dead Sea Scrolls readings supporting the what became the Masoretic text only 35 percent, so we have to consider the fact that 65 percent of the readings in the Dead Sea Scrolls actually do not support the Masoretic Hebrew Bible of today and, in fact, support some of these other textual translations that were made like the Septuagint or, like the Samaritan, Pentateuch is why he McDonald goes on to say he says some of the scrolls exhibit distinctive agreements with the
Greek Jewish Scriptures.
Others are aligned with the Samaritan, Pentateuch and still others are described by taupe as non-aligned now keep in mind. Tove is a Hebrew scholar who researches and studies the readings of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
He is not a Christian. This is not somebody who’s trying to support the Christian position in his statements. He’s just stating the facts. He’s just a researcher. He’s a scholar who he reads these manuscripts and compares them and has noted that only 35 percent support the Masoretic text of today, and that means 65 percent of the manuscripts support the Greek Septuagint or the Samaritans Pentateuch, or just not aligned with any one of those texts, but have different variations that are kind of like a blend or a mixed of those various textual families that we see in that tree that I just showed you that chart that I just showed you so what he goes on to say.
While some of these texts may fit into a textual group of or family, many texts exhibit a mixture of readings variously agreeing with the MT, the Masoretic text, the Greek Jewish Scriptures or the Samaritans Pentateuch.
Therefore, the evidence from Qumran argues that a variety of textual witnesses existed in the first century, which hardly supports existence of a fixed Canon, and therefore you cannot claim that the editors or the translators of the Greek Septuagint were intentionally distorting the text while it’s true that there have been some enhancements made to the Septuagint so that it doesn’t read exactly how the originals manuscripts might have read prior to the first century.
We do know that whatever hands mints, whatever additions and edits, were made to the text of the Septuagint. It was done to bring it into alignment with the ancient Hebrew traditions which were very buried in the very manuscripts.
There were different traditions that were different. I’d textual variants that existed a multiple of different readings and therefore you cannot claim when you’re, comparing the Greek Septuagint to the Masoretic text that the Christians distorted intentionally distorted the Septuagint in these places.
Rather, to the contrary, the Septuagint is widely widely accepted in the scholarly community as giving us a very good glimpse of what the ancient Hebrew manuscript tradition looked like at the time of the first century, 1st and 2nd centuries, when the Septuagint was being edited and corrected Against these ancient Hebrew, readings found in very early manuscripts of the text as supported by the Dead Sea Scrolls.
So this rabbi is completely wrong. When tries to say that, because it’s been edited, it is therefore being corrupted. He has absolutely no evidence to prove corruption of the text of the Septuagint rather to the contrary, the Dead Sea Scrolls show that the Septuagint readings are supported by ancient Hebrew.
Readings Hebrew manuscripts and I have here a list of 233 readings where the
Dead Sea Scrolls aligned with the Septuagint and against the Hebrew Masoretic text of today in the first five books of the Old Testament, the Pentateuch, where you see these 233 various lines of text that support the Septuagint in the ancient Hebrew manuscripts.
Now, if you have that many lines of text that agree with the Septuagint disagreeing with the Masoretic text, what does that say about the rest of the Tanakh? When you compare the Septuagint to the ancient Hebrew manuscripts found in the Dead Sea Scrolls again, there is manuscript support for the Septuagint.
That indicates it was following ancient Hebrew, traditions and not a distortion of New Testament, Christian writers or editors of the second and third centuries. Now one example, one example of a textual variant that is found in the actual Dead Sea Scrolls that even this rabbi admits to is Psalm 145 verses 13 through 14 in the Christian Bible.
Why this is a significant textual variant? Is you have a whole line of text, as you can see right here in the red that whole line of text is missing in the current mess erotic text of the Jewish Hebrew Bible? And what’s significant about this? Is in this passage of Psalm 145, it’s basically a Nakash acrostic, where you take like the Hebrew letters of the alphabet: alef-bet gmail, dolla, the –, hey, bubs, n kit. You take those Hebrew letters and each verse begins with one of those characters.
In the Hebrew vApp alphabet, so you come on down to meme which in the Hebrew reads right to left so right here you have the character main, and what we would expect to follow would be none this character right here, but this entire verse is missing in the Masoretic text, you have a verse for main and then it jumps down to some escape, none completely in the Masoretic text, and then you got name, none sonic, I mean Fay and Sade.
It just follows the acrost, except for none in the Masoretic text. We find this missing verse in the Dead Sea Scrolls, and not only do we find this missing verse in the Dead Sea Scrolls. We find this missing verse in the Septuagint, the lxx Septuagint Greek translation of the Hebrew manuscripts.
This is another evidence that the New Testament Christians were not distorting the Septuagint, but rather any additions that were made. Any corrections that were made were made to bring it into alignment with the ancient Hebrew tradition and texts of the Hebrew Bible.
Now I would like to address the last argument that this rabbi brought up against Christianity after he got done, claiming that the Septuagint is a bad translation. It’s a bad version, and there’s no way the Holy Spirit would use the Greek Septuagint. Well, let me just mention for a moment the Holy Spirit uses whatever Bible is available at the time. The Holy Spirit in my life has used the English Bible.
When I’m reading it to speak to me the truths of God’s Word, so don’t tell me the Holy Spirit wouldn’t have whispered into the ears of the Apostles when he was giving them the truth from the Greek Septuagint.
Of course he would. He used the Greek Septuagint. It was the language of the day. So, yes, all these spirit used the Greek Septuagint and it was not a bad translation. Rather, it followed very ancient Hebrew readings that we have lost today and that’s why it’s an important book to consult when we are evaluating the text of the Old Testament, but let’s put that aside for a moment and consider the argument that, when the Book of Mormon was being translated by Joseph Smith, according to Joseph Smith, reading the text of a reformed Egyptian plates that he dug up out of the earth.
Supposedly, this book was being translated into English from a very ancient text. Unless just look where the 18 chapters, the 18 chapters from the book of Isaiah, are quoted in the Book of Mormon in 2nd Nephi, I don’t know if you could see this, but I want you to note the date at the bottom of the page here for a second Nephi, 2nd Nephi in the Book of Mormon.
When was this text supposedly written? This text was supposedly written between 559 BC and 545 BC. Now ask yourself the question: what kind of comparison is that the King James Bible, 1611 1611 A.D. was written and translated? How many years after the Book of Mormon text was supposed to have been originally written over two thousand years difference a 2,000 years difference and you have the text of the King James Bible being quoted in the text of 2nd Nephi in the Book of Mormon written Between 559 BC and 545 BC, now, why is this significant? The King James translators, inserted text to help clarify the meaning of the text? You might say it might be even questionable translation, maybe a mistranslation, but this italicized text that is found in the chapters of Isaiah that are quoted in the Book of Mormon are, incidentally, found in the very translation that Joseph Smith made of the Book of Mormon.
So here’s the problem: how do you get the text of the King James translators that they added to the text of Isaiah in a book that was supposedly written 2,000 years earlier? Do you see why Christians have a problem with the King James quotations in the text of the Book of Mormon, because it doesn’t fit the even the context of the time frame when the Book of Mormon was supposedly written? But this is not the case of what we have with the New Testament Scriptures when the New Testament Scriptures were being written, quoting the Old Testament from the Greek Septuagint.
We have strong evidence that the Greek Septuagint was fully translated before the first century CE II. Before the time of Christ before the New Testament was even 10, so if we would expect to find quotations of the Greek Septuagint being utilized by the writers of our New Testament text, so this rabbi trying to point to the Book of Mormon and say well, Christians Reject the King James Bible, quotations in the Book of Mormon, why don’t they reject the Greek Septuagint is a bogus argument. It just doesn’t work. If there’s nothing even remotely close it to this comparison. A book that is quoting a manuscript that wasn’t written for 2,000 years
after the book was supposed to be originally written, is nothing compared to the New Testament.
That is quoting a book that is well recognized in the scholarly community as having been fully translated before the first century. There is absolutely no comparison between the Christian use of the Greek Septuagint in their New Testament quotations of the Old Testament and Joseph Smith’s use of the 1611 King James Bible, when he’s translating a book that was supposedly written 2,000 years before the King James Bible was translated.
As you can see, there is no comparison between Mormonism and biblical Christianity and, of course, Christianity is not the Mormonism of Judaism, as we can see, the evidence shows so plain and clearly you can trust your New Testament Bible, but you cannot trust the Book of Mormon translation used by the Mormons. Thank you for watching. [Music].