Monday, September 17, 2012

Catholic’s “Extra Books” in their Bible? Part II

Objection2 – Septuagint Text Old Testament has extra-books while in Hebrew text, after Prophet Malachi there was no any revelation revealed (biblical silent); therefore the 7 extra-books are product of Greek speaking Jews.

False! The Hebrew text where Septuagint based its translation is from Ancient Hebrew Text used by early Jews. This is not the latest Hebrew text known as Masoretic text with only 39 books.

This problem rooted on the incorrect notion that the modern Jewish Bible (or the Masoretic Text) is identical to the Ancient Hebrew Text used by Jesus Christ and his Apostles [or Early Jews in all]. This is wrong!

During the time of Christ going down to 2nd century AD there was no so called “Old Testament Canon” or No official List of Hebrew books to be considered binding to all Jews.

This was corroborated by the fact that there were groups within Judaism and each group has its own list of which (according to their own rules) were the inspired words of God:

     (a)   The Sadducees accepted only the five books of Moses as
      authoritative. (the
Torah: Pentateuch);

                    (b)   The Pharisees on the other hand has a long list (the Tanakh):
1. the Torah (Pentateuch/ the Law);
2. the Neviim (the Prophets); and
3. the Kethuvim (Hagiographa)(the Writings)

Since each group used different list of Old Testament Books, there were doctrinal difference as well, for example the Sadducees rejected the resurrection of the dead since they didn’t see that teaching in the Torah. [We are sure Christ and his Apostles used the Tanakh when quoting verse from OT (the Septuagint (LXX) Text):

Then he said, "When I was with you before, I told you that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must be fulfilled." [Luke 24:44]

Part II: The Hebrew Masoretic Text

On this article, we will explain the following:

(1) Septuagint (LXX) Text [which includes the 7 books] the one used by Christ and his Apostles was the most reliable source (copy/translation) of Ancient Hebrew Text use by Early Jews; the 7 contested books are not newly added books, they are part of the Ancient writings of early Jews.

(2) Masoretic Text (the current Jewish Bible) was a product of Anti-Christian Jews in second century AD, and this group was also responsible for excluding the 7 books found in Septuagint (LXX).

The Hebrew Masoretic Text
(Anti-Christian Text)

Observe the following verse:
Acts 15:13-17(New Testament): […] The words of the prophets are in agreement with this, as it is written: "'After this I will return and rebuild David's fallen tent. Its ruins I will rebuild, and I will restore it, [T]hat the remnant of men may seek the Lord, and all the Gentiles who bear my name, says the Lord, who does these things'

Apostle James in Acts 15:13-17 tells us that a remnant of Israelites will seek the Lord along with all the Gentiles upon whom the name of the Lord is called. Acts 15:13-17 is actually a quote from the book of Prophet Amos 9:11-12. Now compare the quote above using the King James Version Old Testament:

Amos 9:12 (Old Testament)
[T]hat they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name, saith the LORD that doeth this.

Rather than telling us that the remnant of men (Jews) will seek the Lord along with all the Gentiles, as the New Testament quotes it, [Amos 9:12] in the King James Version tells us that the Jews will "POSSESS the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen..." as if they were saying that the “Jews is Higher than the Gentiles”. But Apostle James in [Acts 15:13-17] told us that according to Prophet Amos [Amos 9:12] the “Jews along with the Gentiles who bear the name of God will seek the Lord” in other words they were equal. We see that they disagree sharply in content.
But compare Acts 15:13-17 to another Old Testament Bible version (the Brenton’s English Translation of the Greek Septuagint (LXX)):

Amos 9.12 […] that the remnant of mankind and all the nations who are called by my name may seek the Lord, 

How are we to explain this discrepancy?

The cause for the confusion rests in the fact that the King James Version Old Testament was translated from the Hebrew Masoretic Text instead of the Greek Septuagint (LXX) used by Apostle James.

Here’s a few other comparative sample:

[Agreements between the New Testament and the Septuagint are in red text; blue text is used to highlight the divergence of the KJV Old Testament]:

Hebrews 10:5 quoting Psalm 40:6 That is why, when Christ came into the world, he said to God, "You did not want animal sacrifices or sin offerings. But you have given me a body to offer.

Psalm 40:6 (from Septuagint English Translation)
You take no delight in sacrifices or offerings; but You have given me a body...

But using King James Version based on Hebrew Masoretic Text:

Psalm 40:6 Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened...

The Masoretic Hebrew Text omits the key phrase entirely, replacing “but a body hast thou prepared for me” with “mine ears hast thou opened.”

Hebrews 1:6 quoting Deuteronomy 32:43 And when he brought his supreme Son into the world, God said, "Let all of God's angels worship him."

Deuteronomy 32:43 (from Septuagint English Translation)
"Rejoice with him, you heavens, and let all of God's angels worship him. Rejoice with his people, you nations, and let all the angels be strengthened in him. For he will avenge the blood of his servants; he will take revenge against his enemies. He will repay those who hate him and cleanse the land for his people."

Sadly, the Masoretic Hebrew Text omit this Phrase

Deuteronomy 32:43 (KJV Old Testament)
Phrase omitted.

Again, Matthew 12:21 quoting Isaiah 42:4 And his name will be the hope of all the world."

The prophesy of Prophet Isaiah in Is. 42:4 is regarded by Christians as a prophesy of Gentiles acceptance of faith in the name of Christ, but the Hebrew Masoretic Text omits the key phrase entirely, replacing the phrase with “Even distant lands beyond the sea will wait for his instruction."

Isaiah 42:4 (from the Septuagint English Translation)
He shall shine out, and shall not be discouraged, until he have set judgment on the earth: and in his name shall the Gentiles trust.

Isaiah 42:4 (KJV Old Testament)
He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth:
and the isles shall wait for his law.

These contradictions prove one thing: It proves that the Ancient Hebrew texts have been altered to suit the agenda of the alterers.

Before the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls the only Hebrew Text of Old Testament we have is the Hebrew Masoretic Text. Most bible Scholars assumed that time, that this “MasoreticText” was the first hand witness of the “Ancient Hebrew Text” or the so called Hebrew Original used by ancient Judaism. And since “Septuagint (LXX) text” was written in Greek, they contended that the “text” was not original and corrupted by Hellenistic interpretation.

With the discovery of Dead Sea Scrolls, large amount of Hebrew Old Testament Text was found dating back as far as 2nd century BC more or less 1000 years older than Hebrew Masoretic Text. These Dead Sea Scrolls manuscripts were one of the original copies of “Ancient Hebrew Text” (Hebrew Original).

When comparative analysis was made between the Hebrew manuscript found in Dead Sea Scroll, the Hebrew Masoretic Text and the Septuagint (LXX) Greek text, the Septuagint is more closely aligned with the biblical manuscripts found in the Dead Sea scrolls!

John Allegro a British representative on the International team working on the discovered Dead Sea Scrolls in Jordan and in 1961 became a Honorary Adviser on the Dead Sea Scrolls to the Jordanian Government, states that:

"Qumran agrees 13 times with the LXX against the MT and four times with the MT against the LXX [...]" (Allegro 74).

"It seems now that, to scholars engaged on this work in the future, Qumran has offered a new basis for a confidence in the LXX in at least the Historical books, which should allow them to accept better readings of that version almost as readily as if they were found in the Hebrew MT. In other words, each reading in the future must be judges on it's merits not on any preconceived notion of the superiority of the Hebrew version simply because it is Hebrew… If the Greek offers a better reading than that ought to be taken and put in the text of the translation..."(81).

**Qumran or the Dead Sea Scrolls.
**MT or Masoretic Text
**LXX or the Septuagint Text

But before the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, a French Scholar named Louis Cappel (1585-1658) already notice that the Hebrew Masoretic Text seems to him was not the exact representation of Hebrew Original. Excerpt from Encyclopedia Britannica CAPPEL, LOUIS – 1948:

As a Hebrew scholar, he concluded that the vowel points and accents were not an original part of Hebrew, but were inserted by the Masorete Jews of Tiberias, not earlier then the 5th Century AD, and that the primitive Hebrew characters are Aramaic and were substituted for the more ancient at the time of the captivity[…] The various readings in the Old Testament Text and the differences between the ancient versions and the Masoretic Text convinced him that the integrity of the Hebrew text as held by Protestants, was untenable. This amounted to an attack upon the verbal inspiration of Scripture. Bitter, however, as was the opposition, it was not long before his results were accepted by scholars."

Louis Cappel points out that the Hebrew Masoretic Text is different from the Hebrew of the Patriarchs (Ancient Hebrew Text or the Hebrew Original) in which Old Testament was originally written. So If Moses were to see a copy of the Masoretic Text, he wouldn’t be able to read it, because the original Old Testament scriptures (Ancient Hebrew Text or the Hebrew Original) were written in Paleo-Hebrew, a text closely related to the ancient Phonecian writing system while the Masoretic Text is written with an alphabet which is almost 1000 years newer than the form of writing used by Moses, David, and most of the Old Testament authors.

Furthermore, for thousands of years, ancient Hebrew was only written with consonants, no vowels. When reading these texts, they had to supply all of the vowels from memory, based on oral tradition.

In Hebrew, just like modern languages, vowels can make a big difference. The change of a single vowel can radically change the meaning of a word. An example in English is the difference between “SOP” and “SIP”. These words have very different definitions. Yet if our language was written without vowels, both of these words would be written “SP”. Thus the vowels are very important.

The most extensive change the Masoretes brought to the Hebrew text was the addition of vowel points. In an attempt to solidify for all-time the “correct” readings of all the Hebrew Scriptures, the Masoretes added a series of dots to the text, identifying which vowel to use in any given location.

Therefore, these findings really nullified the theory that the Masoretic Text is the first-hand witness of Hebrew Original or superior to Septuagint (LXX) Greek Text!

Who made the Hebrew Masoretic Text?

Dr. Michael S. Heiser a Biblical scholar in Semitic Language and Koine Greek stated that:

The early church predominantly used the LXX (Septuagint - a Greek translation of a different text type), not the MT (Masoretic Text), which was reworked and textually conformed to create a text that disagreed with the LXX used by Christians. 

The Jewish Masoretes (scribes) "standardized" [...] so as to assist the Rabbinical scholars in debating against the LXX, the Bible of the Christians.

In the 1st century AD, Jesus and His Apostles quoted the Greek Septuagint (LXX). As we have already pointed out, we know this because the quotations of the Greek New Testament are aligned with the Greek Septuagint, but in sharp opposition to the Hebrew Masoretic Text.

But toward the end of 1st century AD and into the 2nd, the Talmudic, Edomite Jews were actively attacking the Greek Septuagint because it was used by the Christians. They felt that they could discredit the Christians merely for the reason that they used Greek, and at the same time, they began twisting the Hebrew Scriptures to try and disprove that Jesus was the true Messiah.

One of the most famous examples of how the Jews attacked the Greek Septuagint aside from what I cited above was the word virgin:

Matthew 1:22-23 All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord's message through his prophet: "Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means 'God is with us.'"

Apostle Matthew was quoting Prophet Isaiah [Isaiah 7:14]

Isaiah 7:14 [from Septuagint (LXX) English version] "Therefore, the Master Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will conceive in the womb, and will bring forth a Son, and you will call His Name Emmanuel."

But using the Hebrew Mesoretic Text the word virgin was changed with the word alma or young woman.

Obviously, the Edomite Jews did not believe that Jesus was the true Messiah; this was why they were attacking the Septuagint. The Jews are the ones who changed the Hebrew, replacing the word virgin with young woman. The motive of the Edomite Jews was to destroy Christianity.

They create the so called short Hebrew Old Testament Canon? Official List (from previous 46 books down to 39) they omits Tobit, Judith, Wisdom, Sirach (Ecclesiasticus), Baruch, and 1 and 2 Maccabees, chapters 10-16 of Esther, and three sections of Daniel: Daniel 3:24-90, Daniel 13, and Daniel 14. Plus they rejected the entire Gospels written by Christ's Apostles and their Epistles!

And since they were Anti-Christians they produced a prayer called Birkat haMinim which cursed the Christians as sectarians, and prayed to God that for these sectarians:

“Let there be no hope, and may all the evil in an instant be destroyed and all Thy enemies be cut down swiftly; and the evil ones uproot and break and destroy and humble soon in our days. Blessed art You, LORD, who breaks down enemies and humbles sinners.”

This prayer was to be prayed every Sabbath, and it forced the Jewish Christians to stop worshiping with the non-Christian Jews in synagogue. From Can Protestants Rely Upon the "Council of Jamnia" for Their Bible?

This was the observation of Justin Martyr, the Jews who had rejected Jesus Christ had also rejected the Septuagint (LXX)

“But I am far from putting reliance in your teachers, who refuse to admit that the interpretation made by the seventy elders who were with Ptolemy [king] of the Egyptians is a correct one; and they attempt to frame another. And I wish you to observe, that they have altogether taken away many Scriptures from the [Septuagint] translations effected by those seventy elders who were with Ptolemy, and by which this very man who was crucified is proved to have been set forth expressly as God, and man, and as being crucified, and as dying” [150 A.D., Justin Martyr, Dialogue with Trypho the Jew, Chapter LXXI]

From "Ancient Hebrew Text" they reduced the books into a "New Hebrew Canon?" - a List of Scriptures that according to them are the only "Inspired words of God"... No more.No less. unfortunately, Protestant in 16th century believed and followed this "Canon?" set by the Masoretes: The 39 books of Old Testament. They rejected the 7 other books long held by Christ, his Apostles and Early Christians. 

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