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6637Re: tc-list Burgon on 1Tim 3:16

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  • Robert B. Waltz
    Aug 1, 1999
      On 8/1/99, dd-1@... wrote:

      >Robert, Denny Diehl here
      > >Think of it! The Textus Receptus, from which the King James Version
      > >is translated, which contains readings not found in *any* Greek
      > >manuscript.
      > >
      > >All I will say on the subject.
      >If you wouldn't mind saying a little more on the subject, besides
      >the Comma Johannine, would you mind listing those readings
      >which are not found in any Greek manuscript?

      Someone pointed out that Erasmus had no text of the final portion
      of the Apocalypse (though it was only a few verses, not two
      chapters). As a result, there are several readings in there not
      found in any Greek manuscript. (I don't have a full list, but
      you could check Hoskier.)

      In addition, in Phil. 4:3, the TR reads KAI. Metzger reports
      that this reading is supported only by 462, but according to
      Davies, 462 reads NAI along with all other witnesses.

      There may be others; I don't know. Hard to tell, given the lack
      of complete collations. :-)

      Technically, the Comma *is* found in Greek manuscripts. It's just
      that the manuscripts (with the exception of 629 and others which
      have it from the Latin) are generally copies of the TR.

      And since you've gotten me talking anyway, I should make a point
      here. Helge Evenson makes the argument that the issue is the number
      of witnesses. Jim West or Philip Wesley Comfort would argue for

      Neither one matters. If majority rule meant anything, the world
      would be flat and we'd all be pantheists (since, when the human
      race evolved, people held both opinions :-).

      Age doesn't mean anything either.

      What matters is that the majority of manuscripts disagree with
      the earliest manuscripts. Therefore at least one group must be
      wrong (they may, be it noted, *both* be wrong, but no more than
      one group can be right).

      The tendency is to decide this matter "politically" -- as if
      manuscripts were people lined up at a polling place. (Not that
      that means much; generally speaking, the unwashed mass of
      voters are fools. Consider that, in America, they voted for BOTH
      Reagan AND Clinton :-).

      It's not a political matter. It's not a dogmatic manner, either.
      One must, by some *external*, non-political, non-dogmatic means
      decide between the old manuscripts and the majority of manuscripts.

      Most textual critics use "internal evidence," and on this basis
      prefer the text of the older manuscripts. This is *not* universal;
      Maurice Robinson prefers the majority text based on this sort of
      reasoning. And, frankly, I have more respect for Robinson (even
      though his text differs greatly from mine) than I have for
      Comfort -- whose text more nearly agrees with mine, but for the
      wrong reasons.

      But I stress: The matter must be decided based on comparison of
      the text-types, not comparison of the number, age, or other
      arbitrary fact about their witnesses. (Surely you wouldn't
      pick a New Testament text based on the colour of the parchment,
      would you? Yet that is as valid a basis for discrimination as
      the others, since it just as completely ignores the text.)

      I hope that makes sense. This is more time than I was supposed
      to spend on this subject today. :-)


      Robert B. Waltz

      Want more loudmouthed opinions about textual criticism?
      Try my web page: http://www.skypoint.com/~waltzmn
      (A site inspired by the Encyclopedia of NT Textual Criticism)
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