quote:Originally posted by Karl: I was referring to the line of David aspect. Which particular part of the Messianic tradition do you think Matthew contradicts?
Matthew doesn't contradict the line of David aspect, per se. Matthew does contradict the prophetic traditions concerning the Kingship of Christ by including an ancestor whose line God cursed to never again sit on the throne of Israel. Matthew is appealing to the tradition and contradicting it in the same breath, so to speak.
quote:Originally posted by Karl: Judge - you really are barking up a pretty poor tree here, basing an argument on an alleged Aramaic document that we have no copies of, and at best disputed evidence for. Let's stick to what we have got, eh?
All - I haven't forgotten my promise to examine this whole "Matthew's use of the OT" issue, and the Jeconiah curse issue - I actually think they are closely related. Will be up very shortly - probably before you US types are out of bed.
Hi Karl, I think you will find that you are mistaken here. :-) There are around the same number of exatant (there may even be more, I'll have to check)Ancient (first millenium) complete copies of the NT in Aramaic as there are in Greek. The vast majority of the 5300 or so ancient greek manuscripts are not even near to complete. No two ancient greek manuscripts are identical either. By contrast all 350 or so ancient peshitta manuscripts are identical.
The root of the problem seems to be that although western Christians have examined the ancient greek manuscripts to death for the past 500 years or so, for this whole period they have all but ignored the Aramaic version! In other words in the wake of the reformation with it's doctrine of "sola scritura" it became very important (for some anyway) to bolster their defence of scripture by "examinig the greek to death".
There probably was not even a copy of the peshitta in Europe at the time!! Western scholars have arrogantly decided that the NT was written in greek and never bothered to really investigate whether this was the case.
Too hard to believe???? Have a look at my posts here with John. I have asked him to provide one piece of evidence that the NT was written in greek. What was his response? He can't even provide one.
People believe it was written in greek because that is what they have been told, thats all.
1. the reference to the estrangelo inscription fron 6 a.d. can be found in the link I provided. 2.Josephus did not write his works in greek (originally anyway) He himself admits that he later translated them into greek.
3.I will repeat that the NT does not quote the LXX. I notice now you are at least softeneing and saying it "prefers" the LXX. As I pointed out Ephesians 4:8 quotes neither the LXX or the masoretic text (which did not exist as such until the middle ages anyway). It quotes what ever version/s were around at the time of christ.
"At Alexandria the Hellenistic Jews used the version, and gradually attached to it the greatest possible authority: from Alexandria it spread amongs the Jews of the dispersion, so that at the time of our Lord's birth it was the common form in which the Old Testament Scriptures had become diffused."
The Septuagint version having been current for about three centuries before the time when the books of the New Testament were written, it is not surprising that the Apostles should have used it more often than not in making citations from the Old Testament. They used it as an honestly-made version in pretty general use at the time when they wrote. They did not on every occasion give an authoritative translation of each passage de novo, but they used what was already familiar to the ears of converted Hellenists, when it was sufficiently accurate to suit the matter in hand. In fact, they used it as did their contemporary Jewish writers, Philo and Josephus, but not, however, with the blind implicitness of the former."
"... before the end of the second century there were, besides the Septuagint, three versions of the Old Testament in Greek, known to both Jews and Christians."
"Thus the Septuagint demands our attention, were it only from the fact that the whole circle of religious ideas and thoughts amongst Christians in the East has always been moulded according to this version."
THE SEPTUAGINT WITH APOCRYPHA: GREEK AND ENGLISH, Sir Lancelot C. L. Brenton, Originally published by Samuel Bagster & Sons, London, 1851. Pgs. iii; iv; v; vi. [bold emphasis mine]
The Septuagint (LXXII) was produced to serve the (then) modern age. Before Rome's Empire became established Greek was the international language of science and commerce. One could not be considered functionally literate in that time without the ability to read and write Greek.
Think of the Septuagint as an Old International Version (OIV).
OK I don't have a problem with the LXX being produced 250 B.C. (though some people do). And I would agree that most of the time the Nt quotes are the same if not pretty close to the LXX. But there are times when the Nt quotes neither the LXX or the massoretic Hebrew. Epesians 4:8 is a good example. The reading in Ephesians 4:8 is only found in an Aramaic targum. I think the text/s quoted by the authors of the NT are very close to the LXX, but not identical. As i beleive the NT was written in aramaic (which still survives) I think the NT very probably quotes Aramaic targums of that day which no longer exist. We know from the dead sea scrolls discoveries that variants of the texts existed at the time of Christ and that these varaitions are more similar to the LXX than the massoretic hebrew text compiled in the middle ages (probably)
quote:Originally posted by judge: I would agree that most of the time the Nt quotes are the same if not pretty close to the LXX. But there are times when the Nt quotes neither the LXX or the massoretic Hebrew.
Sure. The Masoretic text wasn't around until about 700 AD.
quote:Epesians 4:8 is a good example. The reading in Ephesians 4:8 is only found in an Aramaic targum.
I'm a bit confused here. Are you talking about the OT passage which is quoted at Ephesians 4:8? It sounds familiar but I am having to look for it. OK. Psalm 68:18 "Thou hast ascended on high ..."
Hmmmmm. It reads very much the same. But if you are saying that it quotes an Aramaic version then it would be even more divergent considering the differences between Aramaic and Greek. The English translation (KJV) reads significantly different at Ephesians from how it reads at Psalms. But the Greek is almost Identical. I don't know how to represent Greek characters here, so I will do an approximation of the Greek, comparing the standard Greek New Testament with the Septuagint version mentioned in my previous post.
The GNT indents, centers and prints it in bold to indicate that it is a quote. I am going to present them in sequential lines so the the similarities and differences are easier to see. GNT first:
"Anabas eis upsos ehchmaloteusen aichmalosian, edoken domata tois anthropois." "Anabas eis upsos, ehchmaloteusas aichmalosian elabes domata en anthropo, kai gar apeithountes tou kataskehnosai."
As one can see, neither the Greek nor the English version quotes the passage accurately or completely. It is quite possible that Paul, familiar with both Hebrew and Greek, tinkered with the Septuagint a bit, probably with an eye to improving the translation of the originally Hebrew text. I'm sure he wasn't the first teacher to do that and he was certainly not the last!
quote:I think the NT very probably quotes Aramaic targums of that day which no longer exist.
Not sure I understand your need to have the NT originate in Aramaic. If that were so, it would have severely limited its readership, even among the Jews.
quote:We know from the dead sea scrolls discoveries that variants of the texts existed at the time of Christ and that these varaitions are more similar to the LXX than the massoretic hebrew text compiled in the middle ages (probably)
Variants of the Aramaic texts? If that is what you mean, then I would guess that they were translations of the Septuagint. For if the originals were written in Aramaic, why would any author translate them to Greek and then back into Aramaic for an Aramaic speaking audience? Perhaps I have misunderstood your meaning.
Hi again Dr Bill. I'll try tp give you an outline of my views.
Abram was of Aramaic stock, Jacob is described in the scriptures as a wandering Aramaen. I beleive he would have spoken Aramaic/syriac/chaldean. Somehow the hebrews ended up speaking hebrew, which is very closely related. This may have happened in egypt. In 2 Kings 18:17-26 we see an interesting incident. The assyrian envoy begins to talk in hebrew but is asked to instaed speak Aramaic. It seems it would not be understood by the average person. Following the captivity this situation seems almost reveresed. Aramaic became the common language of the Jews and hebrew survived as the "language of scripture". It is a little unclear but this may be inferred from Nehemiah 8:8 (was he translating or merely explainig the meaning). Whichever the case by the time of Christ "meturgy men " were apparently common, that is men who translated the scriptures into Aramaic in the synagogues. No doubt Aramaic targums (translations) existed as well. It seems that ephesians 4:8 may coroborate this. I tried to find a good link that explains this, I found the following but haven't had a good look at it. You may do better (I typed "targum ephesians 4:8 psalm 68:18" into google) http://www.fivedoves.com/letters/july2001/jovial721-1.htm
Both the Aramaic targum and Paul, have Christ "giving" gifts to men.
As for the Dead sea scrolls, they show a hebrew text different (although very slightly) from the hebrew LXX and Syriac.
quote:Originally posted by Karl: If Matthew's implication is that through the work of Christ the curse is lifted, there is no problem. If God put the curse in place, God can remove it. And that is what I suggest he is doing.
But you are still contradicting the prophetic tradition, which contains nothing to suggest that such a lift o' curse is the be the case. In other words, you have Matthew redefining the tradition on the spot. Redefining is not the same as fulfilling. Think about it this way.
1) We are to know the Messiah because of the prophecies he fulfills. This is a safety mechanism to weed out pretenders.
2) If Matthew is doing what you suggest, then he is undercutting the prophetic tradition which is to allow us to identify the messiah.
You are reasoning in circles. "Christ was the Messiah. The curse was lifted because Christ was the messiah. We know that the curse was lifted because if it hadn't been then Christ wouldn't be the messiah, which he is. So the curse was lifted."
quote:Originally posted by judge: 1. the reference to the estrangelo inscription fron 6 a.d. can be found in the link I provided.
Curiously, there is no mention of the critical element-- the script style-- in the article you cited.
The earliest datable Syriac writings are from this kingdom. They are in the form of inscriptions found at Birecik, (near Edessa) dating from 6 AD, (Maricq 1962, Pirenne 1963). These early Syriac inscriptions demonstrate that the Syriac language and script existed before Jesus' ministry
All this tells us is that there is an inscription in Syriac in 6 AD. I haven't disputed the existance of Syriac in 6 AD. The key issue is the script style of estrangelo in which the Peshitta is written and which style did not come into use until appr. 300 AD.
I notice that the "Syriac language and script" existed before Jesus' ministry. This is evasive at best.
quote:2.Josephus did not write his works in greek (originally anyway) He himself admits that he later translated them into greek.
Josephus wrote Jewish War in aramaic, which was then translated int Greek. Antiquities was written in Greek.
The twenty volumes of the Jewish Antiquities, in which Flavius Josephus explains Jewish history to a non-Jewish audience, appeared in 94. Its model is a book by the Greek historian Dionysius of Halicarnassus, who wrote twenty books of Roman Antiquities. This time, Josephus wrote the text in Greek and did not use a translator. The result is a text which is less pleasant to read, even though its subject matter is very interesting. http://www.livius.org/jo-jz/josephus/josephus.htm
No, because I don't see why the curse has to be lifted for Jesus to be the Messiah. He is of David's line, even though it be a dispossessed line.
I am suggesting that Matthew included Jeconiah in the lineage not as a proof of Jesus' Messiahship, but as an illustration of what Jesus' work achieves.
I agree that redefining is not the same as fulfilling. I suggest that Matthew has Jesus do both - the Messiah's achievements go beyond the prophecies, which is OK theologically - "No ear has ever heard, nor eye has ever seen...."
[This message has been edited by Karl, 12-04-2002]
quote:Originally posted by judge: In 2 Kings 18:17-26 we see an interesting incident. The assyrian envoy begins to talk in hebrew but is asked to instaed speak Aramaic. It seems it would not be understood by the average person. Following the captivity this situation seems almost reveresed. Aramaic became the common language of the Jews and hebrew survived as the "language of scripture".
Understandable, since they had been in captivity for several generations.
quote:It is a little unclear but this may be inferred from Nehemiah 8:8 (was he translating or merely explainig the meaning).
That the average person was not familiar with Hebrew at the time? Yes.
quote:Whichever the case by the time of Christ "meturgy men " were apparently common, that is men who translated the scriptures into Aramaic in the synagogues.
This is new to me. Can you direct me somewhere for further reading?
When Assyria ruled the world, the important language to know was Assyrian. When Babylon ruled - Babylonian etc.
When Greece took over from Babylon, the important language to know became Greek. That is why the Hebrew scriptures were translated into Greek (LXXII).
In the time of Christ, most Jews understood Greek and many understood Latin. Those still living in the region of the old Aramaic Empire (Syria, Mesopotamia) retatined Aramaic as a native tongue. Some Palestinian Jews may have passed it to their children like some American families pass along the native tongues of their land of origin.
I will explore that. Meanwhile, how about lets try to lay our hands on an Aramaic Bible. That would be our most direct route to discovery, Yes?
quote: Both the Aramaic targum and Paul, have Christ "giving" gifts to men.
I see that as a typical Pauline spin.
quote: As for the Dead sea scrolls, they show a hebrew text different (although very slightly) from the hebrew LXX and Syriac.
Is it just a missing comma, or are you under the impression that there is a Hebrew language Septuagint? The most notable thing about ancient manuscripts is how much editorializing has been done on them. But this should not surprise us. Look at how many versions there are in English! And all of them taken from the same body of "original" manuscripts.
... he showed no signs of understanding Greek when talking to a Roman soldier (Acts 21:37). Let's take a closer look at what Acts 21 says...
Paul is talking in Hebrew or Aramaic and the soldier asks him...
"Do you know Greek" ...then... "Aren't you an Egyptian?" ... He was asking if he was an Egyptian to avoid him ducking the use of Greek.
The soldier must have had a working knowledge of Hebrew and/or Aramaic to work in Israel. Why did he want to speak to Paul in Greek? Probably so he could hold a conversation with him without the crowd understanding what they were saying since most of Israel DID NOT speak Greek and in fact in was not permitted to teach your children Greek under Jewish Law.
a. - The text makes no mention of Paul talking prior to his request to speak to the crowd.
b. - Paul initiated this conversation, "May I have a word with you?" and the Roman officer replies, "'Do you know Greek?:' the commander asked, surprised." (Living Bible)
c. - Paul was asking permission (in Greek) to speak to the crowd; which he then did, in Hebrew.
d. - The author of the article assumes that the Roman officer needs to have a working knowledge of Hebrew/Aramaic in order to work in Palestine. He also assumes that Paul does not need a working knowledge of Greek in order to administer the worldwide Christian movement. !!
e. - Most of Israel did not speak Greek? No matter. Paul's ministry was performed, for the most part, outside Israel.
f. - Illegal to teach Greek in Israel? Perhaps, at one time, but how was that being enforced during the time of Paul? Remember, the holy scriptures (OT and Apocrypha) were already available to Greek speaking Jews and had been so for about 300 years.
Again from the website:
quote:Paul's answer as to whether he knows Greek isn't recorded, but he is recorded as saying he is a Jew - the implication being he's affirming he knows the Hebrew languages (Hebrew and/or Aramaic). So the answer "I am a Jew" is an implied "No" to the question, "Do you speak Greek?"
Is the author trying to mislead us here? Look at the full question -
"Do you know Greek? Are you not the Egyptian, then, who recently stirred up a revolt and led the four thousand men of the Assassins out into the wilderness?" RSV
Now look at the full answer -
"I am a Jew, from Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no mean city; I beg you, let me speak to the people." Revised Standard Version
Paul's answer is made to assure the soldier that he is not the leader of a band of assassins. The author of the article is so bent on proving that Paul did not speak Greek that s/he apparently misses this point entirely.