What Makes the Alexandrian Manuscripts that Make Up All Modern Bibles Superior to the Byzantine Manuscripts of the KJV and NKJV?

The Reading Culture of Early Christianity From Spoken Words to Sacred Texts 400,000 Textual Variants 02

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Edward D. Andrews
EDWARD D. ANDREWS (AS in Criminal Justice, BS in Religion, MA in Biblical Studies, and MDiv in Theology) is CEO and President of Christian Publishing House. He has authored over 140 books. Andrews is the Chief Translator of the Updated American Standard Version (UASV).

The Alexandrian text’s characteristics are briefness and simplicity of style. In other words, generally speaking, it is shorter than the text of other forms. In addition, it does not display the same level of grammatical and stylistic refining that is representative of the Byzantine text-type. In the days of Westcott and Hort, the two principal witnesses to the Alexandrian text-type were Codex Vaticanus [300-325 C.E.] and Codex Sinaiticus [330-360 C.E.]. Then, we had the discovery of P66 [110-150 C.E.] and P75 [175-225 C.E.], which now shows us that the Alexandrian text-type goes back to an archetype that dates early in the second century. In addition, the Sahidic and Bohairic versions often contain Alexandrian readings.

The Byzantine text is the last to be developed out of all of the text-types of the New Testament. It is characterized chiefly by the scribes altering the text in their attempts making things more clear and adding material to complete what they felt was left unsaid. The scribes of this text endeavored to remove any harshness of language. They also combined two or more different variant readings into one expanded reading, which is known as a conflation. They also harmonized different variant parallel passages. The Byzantine Empire took over and the Byzantine text form was regarded as the authoritative standard form of text, not because it was better because it was a corrupt text, and so it was the one most widely copied text for centuries.

Metzger writes,

This conflated text, produced perhaps at Antioch in Syria, was taken to Constantinople, whence it was distributed widely throughout the Byzantine Empire. It is best represented today by codex Alexandrinus (in the Gospels; not in Acts, the Epistles, or Revelation), the later uncial manuscripts, and the great mass of minuscule manuscripts. Thus, except for an occasional manuscript that happened to preserve an earlier form of text, during the period from about the sixth or seventh century down to the invention of printing with moveable type (A.D. 1450–56), the Byzantine form of text was generally regarded as the authoritative form of text and was the one most widely circulated and accepted.[1]

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In the days of Westcott and Hort, the weak argument was that the Alexandrian scribes removed what we have in the Byzantine manuscripts, while the correct understanding was that the Byzantine scribes added and altered. How could we ever solve it once and for all? Yes, the discovery of 100+ papyrus manuscripts that had a number of them dating within decades of the originals, all Alexandrian text-type. No Byzantine.

100-150/175 C.E. – All Alexandrian
P4/64/67 P32 P46 P52 P66+ P75+ P77/103 P87 P90 P98 P109 P118 P137 0189
P. Oxyrhynchus 405 P. Egerton 2

175-250 C.E. – All Alexandrian
P1 P5 P13 P20 P23 P27 P30 P35 P39 P40 P45 P47 P49/65 P71 P72 P82 P85 P95 P100 P101 P106 P108 P111 P113 P115 P121 P125 P126 P133 P136 0220 0232
P. Oxyrhynchus 406 P. Egerton 3

250-300 C.E. – All Alexandrian
P8 P9 P12 P15 P16 P17 P18 P19 P24 P28 P50 P51 P53 P70 P78 P80 P86 P88 P89 P91 P92 P114 P119 P120 P129 P131 P132 P134 0162 0207 0231
P. Antinoopolis 54

290-390 C.E. – All Alexandrian
P3 P6 P7 P10 P21 P54 P62 P81 P93 P94 P102 (too small) P117 (too small) P122 P123 P127 P130 P139 057 058 059 / 0215 071 0160 0163 0165 0169 0172 0173 0175 0176 0181 0182 0185 0188 0206 0214 0217 0218 0219 0221 0226 0227 0228 0230 0242 0264 0308 0312
P. Oxyrhynchus 4010
P. Oxyrhynchus 5073

Since 1881 and the Westcott and Hort Greek text it has been established that the Byzantine text-type was the last of all the text-types to be developed and was a highly altered manuscript from what would have been the original manuscript. Metzger writes, “It was the corrupt Byzantine form of text that provided the basis for almost all translations of the New Testament into modern languages down to the nineteenth century.”[2]

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J. Harold Greenlee writes,

Although we cannot be certain of some details, it appears that at a very early date after the New Testament was written, some copies were multiplied in Palestine and other MSS [manuscripts] were taken to various regions, including Alexandria, Constantinople, and Rome. In each of these localities further copies of the MSS were made. These copies contained readings distinctive of these groups and differing from the MSS produced in other localities, although all MSS agreed except in these details. Initially, textual scholars identified four principle groups of MSS, or text-types: the Alexandrian, the Byzantine (for Byzantium, another name for Constantinople), the Western (for Rome), and the Caesarean (for the city of Caesarea in Palestine). Some textual scholars have disputed the existence of a separate Caesarean text-type, which is characterized largely by a mixture of Alexandrian and Western readings that occur in a small group of MSS in the Gospels. However, most agree that Caesarean readings are valuable witnesses in their own right. In addition, there are numerous MSS and a few versions that cannot be classified as belonging to any of these groups. In general, this situation was established by the time Christianity gained official recognition by the Roman emperor in the early part of the fourth century.

With the official recognition of the Christian religion by Emperor Constantine there came a new freedom to copy and compare MSS of the Bible on a more professional basis. As MSS were compared more freely, and especially as MSS from various geographical regions were compared, Christians began to realize that there were differences among them. This evidently led to some attempts to bring the MSS into greater agreement by making changes in the existing MSS themselves or by making changes as the MSS were copied. This was not done in any really thorough manner, however, nor by following any well-developed principles. It appears that preference was often given to the readings of Constantinople, since that city was then the center of the Greek-speaking church. This process of making changes and corrections continued for perhaps three centuries or so, with the result that the readings characteristic of Constantinople (the Byzantine readings) became the generally accepted form of the biblical text, and the readings characteristic of other regions were largely neglected. Of the mss that are now known, almost all of those from the eighth century and later are Byzantine in their readings, and these comprise between eighty and ninety percent of all presently known MSS.

The statistics do not mean that the Byzantine MSS, or the Byzantine text-type, are either more correct or less correct than the MSS of other text-types, any more than the facial features of a family of ten children who resemble one another are more “correct” than those of a family of only one child. Indeed, if the number of known MSS were the deciding factor in determining the preferred text, we would have to follow the Latin Vulgate, for there are more known MSS of that version than of all the Greek MSS of all four text-types together.[3]

Characteristics of the Byzantine text include readings that provide smoother transitions, are easier to understand, or are theologically stronger than the alternatives. For example, the Byzantine text of Mark 7:5 reads, “unwashed” hands, while the alternative reading is a word that can mean either “unwashed” or “ceremonially unclean.” The Byzantine text of Mark 1:2, introducing quotes of both Malachi and Isaiah, reads, “It is written in the prophets,” while other MSS read, “It is written in Isaiah the prophet.” The Byzantine also contains many more readings than other text-types in which one gospel passage is harmonized to agree with the parallel in another gospel. The Byzantine text-type is supported by most of the uncial MSS of the fifth century and later, by most of the minuscule MSS, and by most of the versions and church fathers of the fifth and later centuries.[4]

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The Byzantine Text Lacks Early Manuscripts

The ealiest manuscript that can be characterized as belonging to the Byzantine manuscripts family is Codex Alexandrinus (London, British Library, Royal MS 1. D. V-VIII; Gregory-Aland no. A or 02, Soden δ 4) is an early fifth-century Christian manuscript of a Greek Bible,[1] containing the majority of the Greek Old Testament and the Greek New Testament.[2] It is one of the four Great uncial codices. Along with the Codex Sinaiticus and the Vaticanus, it is one of the earliest and most complete manuscripts of the Bible. It is of the Byzantine text-type in Gospels and the Alexandrian test-type in rest of NT. As can be seen from the early papyri above, no Byzantine manuscript existed before 400-440 C.E. It is impossible for the Byzantine Priority defenders, to try to claim that the Byzantine text-type most reflects the original when 100+ early papyri are Alexanfrian text-type, with no Byzantine.

“Amongst the earliest surviving manuscripts, the position is reversed. There are six manuscripts earlier than the 9th century which conform to the Byzantine text-type; of which the 5th-century Codex Alexandrinus (the oldest), is Byzantine only in the Gospels with the rest of the New Testament being Alexandrian.” (Wikipedia)

The Byzantine Priority defenders argue that, yes, while there are no Byzantine manuscripts prior to 400-440 C.E., Codex Alexandrinus, there are Byzantine readings found in the early papyri. Harry A. Sturz taught Greek and textual criticism at Biola University, La Mirada, California. He also helped to translate the New King James Version and is the author of The Byzantine text-type and New Testament Textual Criticism. In his publication, Sturtz claims that he has documented 150 distinctively Byzantine readings using the papyri. Sturz lists “150 distinctively Byzantine readings” found in the papyri. Included in his list are P13, P45, P46, P47, P49, P59, P66, P72, P74, and P75. This claim has opened up Pandora’s Box for the Byzantine text, the Majority Text, the Textus Receptus, and King James Version Only advocates.

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Mezger responds to Sturt’s claim,

A mediating contribution to the ongoing debate about the byzantine text is presented in the book The Byzantine Text-Type and New Testament Textual Criticism by the late Harry A. Sturz. The author argues that the Byzantine text is neither the original nor an entirely secondary text; it is an early, independent text that deserves as much attention and respect as the Alexandrian and Western types. About a third of the book presents extensive lists, tables, and charts that allow the reader to assess the evidence of about 150 passages throughout the New Testament where typical Byzantine readings are supported also by one or more of the early papyri. On the basis of such instances, Sturz concluded that the Byzantine text derives from at least the second century and represents a stream of tradition independent of other early traditions.

Unfortunately, few of the 150 variant readings that Sturz lists are distinctively Byzantine; most of them have significant non-Byzantinewitnesses supporting them as well. Moreover, one must also ask whether the evidence of this or that Byzantine reading among the early papyri demonstrates the existence of the Byzantine text-type. A text type involves a particular constellation of readings in a characteristic pattern, and the fact is that not one of the papyri collated by Sturz can be characterized as Byzantine in the text that it presents. Other serious questions remain, most especially why patristic writers prior to Basil the Great and Chrysostom show no acquaintance with the Byzantine text. In short, one is led to conclude that Sturz failed to prove that the Byzantine text type is older than the fourth century. (Bruce M. Metzger, Bart Ehrman. The Text of New Testament 4th Edit, 222)

The Reading Culture of Early Christianity From Spoken Words to Sacred Texts 400,000 Textual Variants 02

Daniel B. Wallace undermines this argument as well,

Wallace in his article, The Majority Text Theory, says that “Sturz pointed out 150 distinctively Byzantine readings found in the papyri. This claim that the Byzantine text is early because it is found in the papyri (Sturz’s central thesis) has become the basis for hyperbolic claims by MT advocates. Cf. Hodges, “Defense,” 14; Pickering, Identity, 41-42; Willem Franciscus Wisselink, Assimilation as a Criterion for the Establishment of the Text: A Comparative Study on the Basis of Passages from Matthew, Mark and Luke (Kampen: Uitgeversmaatschappij J.H. Kok 1989), 32-24; Maurice A. Robinson and William G. Pierpont, The New Testament in the Original Greek according to the Byzantine/Majority Textform (Atlanta: Original Word, 1991), xxiv-xxvii. But the evidence that Sturz presents is subject to three criticism: (1) Many of his readings have substantial support from other text types and are thus not distinctively Byzantine (cf. Fee’s review of Sturz [240-41]; conceded by Sturz [personal conversation, 1987]), (2) the existence of a Byzantine reading in early papyri does not prove the existence of the Byzantine text type in early papyri, and (3) whether the agreements are genetically significant or accidental is overlooked (as even Wisselink admits [Assimilation, 33]). In my examination of Sturz’s list, I found only eight Byzantine-papyrus alignments that seemed to be genetically significant; six were not distinctively Byzantine (Luke 10:21; 14:3, 34; 15:21; John 10:38; 19:11). Sturz’s best case was in Phil 1:14 (the omission of του θεου)–a reading adopted in NA27/UBSGNT4. When these factors are taken into account, the papyrus-Byzantine agreements become an insufficient base for the conclusions that either Sturz or the MT advocates build from it. For a balanced review of Sturz, see Michael W. Holmes, TrinJ n.s. 6 (1985): 225-228.—The Majority Text Theory: History, Methods, and Critique in The Text of the New Testament in Contemporary Research Author: Daniel B. Wallace, note is #35 on pp. 718-19.

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An Analogy and Observation

Suppose you are walking down a beach and in one place you find a dime, in another place you find a quarter and a nickel, and in six other place you find a couple of coins, would this lead you to think there was a bank on the beach at one time? Let us suppose that there are eight supposed exceptions to Sturz’s 150. We are talking about finding a phrase and at most a few words out of 138,000 words. Is that enough to say the Byzantine text was early in the second century? Here is the marker for plagiarism.  There is the “five (consecutive) word” rule, which holds that, if there are five consecutive words identical to someone else’s writing, then you are guilty of plagiarism.

Remember, Wallace above says that “best case was in Phil 1:14 (the omission of του θεου).” The omission of “the God” really? Out of eight that Wallace found, six of them are not even distinctively Byzantine as claimed. Below are a few other supposed examples that the later Byzantine text preserves a reading that dates from the 2nd or 3rd century and for which there supposedly had been no other early witness. Notice that under basic plagiarism rules, this would not constitute Byzantine being in any of the papyri.

Luke 11.33 for φως in א B D Θ fam 1 fam 13 pm φεγγος is read by P45 Koine 33 al.

John 10.29 for ο…μειζον in B latt boος…μειζων is read by P66 Koine fam 1 fam 13 al.

John 11.32 for προς in א B C* D L Xεις is read by P66 Koine pm.

John 13.26 for βαψας in א B C L X 33και εμβαψας is read by P66c A Θ al.

Acts 17.13 παρασσοντες is omitted by P45 Koine E al.

I Cor. 9.7 for καρπον in א* A B D* G Pεκ του καρπου is read by P46 Koine pl.

Eph. 5.9 for φωτος in א A B D* G Pπνευματος is read by P46 Koine pm.

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The Byzantine Text Lacks Early Church Fathers

The Byzantine text is not found in the quotations of the early Church Fathers of the second and thord centuries. Metzger writes, patristic writers prior to Basil theGreat and Chrysostom show no acquaintance with the Byzantine text.” (Bruce M. Metzger, Bart Ehrman. The Text of New Testament 4th Edit, 222)

The Byzantine Text’s Characteristics

The differences characteristic of the Byzantine text-type display a regular pattern that implies that they are the result of deliberate editing. On this Metzger writes, “The framers of this text sought to smooth away any harshness of language, to combine two or more divergent readings into one expanded reading (called conflation), and to harmonize divergent parallel passages. This conflated text, produced perhaps at Antioch in Syria, was taken to Constantinople, whence it was distributed widely throughout the Byzantine Empire.” – Bruce Manning Metzger, United Bible Societies, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, Second Edition a Companion Volume to the United Bible Societies’ Greek New Testament (4th Rev. Ed.) (London; New York: United Bible Societies, 1994), xxi.

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Defenders of the Byzantine Text

While Karl Lachmann was the one to overthrow the Textus Receptus, it would be B. F. Westcott and F. J. A. Hort in 1881 who would put the nails in the coffin of the Textus Receptus. The 1881 British Revised Version (RV), also known as the English Revised Version (ERV) of the King James Version, and the 1881 New Testament Greek text of Westcott and Hort did not sit well with the King-James-Version-Only[29] advocate John William Burgon (1813–1888) and Edward Miller (1825–1901), both authoring The Causes of the Corruption of the Traditional Text of the Holy Gospels (1896) and The Traditional Text of the Holy Gospels Vindicated and Established (1896). Edward Miller alone authored A Guide to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament (1886). Miller was the assistant to Burgon, he was not a genuine textual scholar.

[29] A connected group of Christians promotes the King James Only movement. It is their position that the King James Version of the Bible is superior to all other English translations and that all English translations based on the Westcott and Hort text of 1881 (foundation text of UBS5 and NA28) are corrupt due to the influence of the Alexandrian Greek manuscripts.

Many King James Version and Textus Receptus advocates want to claim F. H. A. Scrivener (1813–1891) and Herman C. Hoskier (1864-1938), two genuine scholars. Scrivener was a textual scholar, who was on the English New Testament Revision Committee which produced the English Revised Version of the Bible. Scrivener was a loyal and committed critic of Hort on the Bible Revision Committee. Hoskier was a textual scholar, who generally supported the Byzantine text-type against the Alexandrian text-type but not entirely. Hoskier compared Codex Vaticanus with Codex Sinaiticus to see just how many significant differences there were in the best Alexandrian witnesses. Both Scrivener and Hoskier neither fully supported the textual arguments of Wescott and Hort or fully supported the textual theories of Burgon either. Unlike Edward Miller, bother Scrivener and Hoskier were genuine textual scholars.

Thus, it took seventy-years from the death of Burgon before we would see another actual textual scholar, Edward F. Hills (1912-1981), support the traditional (Byzantine) text. Hills authored The King James Version Defended (1956, 1984 4th ed.). The King James Version Onlyist would certainly argue that Hills was the greatest 20th Century Traditional (Byzantine) Text and Textus Receptus defender. Hills Graduated summa cum laude (with the highest distinction) at Yale University (1934), Th.B. from Westminster Theological Seminary (1938), Th.M. from Columbia Theological Seminary, Th.D. in New Testament textual criticism from Harvard (1946) under the supervision of Henry J. Cadbury, Kirsopp Lake as one of the readers. Hills dissertation at Harvard was on textual criticism where he failed to proffer any kind of value or defense for the Byzantine text. Why? He realized that unless he accepted that the Byzantine text was late and had no real value, he was not going to be accepted into the textual criticism community of scholars. Once he was in the textual criticism community of scholars, a few short years later (1952), he was able to return to the fold of defending the traditional (Byzantine) text and the Textus Receptus. The thing is, Hills had never really left the traditional (Byzantine) text and the Textus Receptus.[30] In fact, Hills in his The King James Version Defended, he was a more ardent defender from providential preservation than Burgon had, for according to Hills it was the Textus Receptus that was closest to the original not the Byzantine manuscripts. He even went so far as to say that Erasmus was divinely guided when he added Latin Vulgate readings into the Greek text. (King James Version Defended, 2)

[30] Theodore P. Letis, “Edward Freer Hills’s Contribution to the Revival of the Ecclesiastical Text.” Th.M. thesis, Candler School of Theology, 1987, 150-151.

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Many who reject the traditionalist (Byzantine) views have confused the Textus Receptus with the Majority Text. Therefore, it should be noted that the Majority Text is “a text of the NT in which variant readings are chosen that are found in the majority of all Greek NT manuscripts (Byzantine Family). One could consider this external (objective) evidence and maintain that it is the leading criterion for establishing the text. Credit for this text is due primarily to Zane Hodges and Arthur Farstad, though the latter once humbly told me (Wilkins) that the text was mainly Hodges’ work. Hodges maintained that mathematical probabilities pointed to the text with the greatest number of surviving manuscripts as the one closest to the original. Thus the name is an accurate description, though Hodges’ theory about the text’s relation to the original is arguable at best. Of greater value and importance, the Majority Text has essentially purged the Byzantine text of its negative association with the Textus Receptus. Nevertheless, most textual critics maintain that those favoring the MT rely heavily on theological arguments and thin objective evidence in their defense of the text. In particular, easier readings tend to prevail over harder in the MT and BT.” (The Text of the New Testament, 555)

Almost all defenders of the Byzantine Text family, the Majority Text, and the Textus Receptus, as well as the King James Bible today,  rely on Burgon to explain their arguments. Therefore, before focusing our attention on the 150 distinctively Byzantine readings that appear in early papyri by Sturz, we must briefly examine Burgon’s views. The fundamental principle of Burgon’s textual arguments was his inferred position on verbal-plenary inspiration, that is, providential preservation. (Traditional Text, 9, 11-12) It is on this basis that we get four arguments that are used by the Byzantine, Majority Text, and Textus Receptus supporters.

Bible scholar David Fuller brings us the first argument in his book, Which Bible, where he writes, “Burgon regarded the good state of preservation of B (Codex Vaticanus) and ALEPH (Codex Sinaiticus) in spite of their exceptional age as proof not of their goodness but of their badness. If they had been good manuscripts, they would have been read to pieces long ago. We suspect that these two manuscripts are indebted for their preservation, solely to their ascertained evil character …. Had B (Vaticanus) and ALEPH (Sinaiticus) been copies of average purity, they must long since have shared the inevitable fate of books which are freely used and highly prized; namely, they would have fallen into decadence and disappeared from sight. Thus, the fact that B and ALEPH are so old is a point against them, not something in their favour. It shows that the Church rejected them and did not read them. Otherwise, they would have worn out and disappeared through much reading.”

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Thus, Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, leading representatives of the Alexandrian family of manuscripts, are in such great condition because they are full of errors, alterations, additions, and deletions so they would have had little chance of wear and tear, never having been used by true believers. This argument is simply the weakest and most desperate that this author has ever heard. First, many of the papyrus Alexandrian manuscripts are in terrible shape, some being 200 years older than codices Vaticanus and Sinaiticus, which would mean that they must have been read very often by true believers. Second, a number of old Byzantine and Western manuscripts are in good condition as well, which by this argument would indicate that they are also guilty of never having been read because they were full of errors, alterations, additions, and deletions so they would have had little chance of wear and tear. Third, the size of Sinaiticus with the Old Testament, the New Testament, and apocryphal books, among other books would have weighed about 50+ lbs. This book was not read in the same manner that Christians would read their Bibles today. The same would be true of Codex Vaticanus as well. Fourth, both were written on extremely expensive and durable calfskin. Fifth, the period of copying the Byzantine text-type was c. 330 – 1453 C.E. and it progressed into the most corrupt period for the Church (priests to the popes: stealing, sexual sins, torture, and murder); so much so, it ends with the Reformation. Thus, the idea of true believers wearing out manuscripts is ludicrous. Sixth, the Bible was locked up in Latin. Jerome’s Latin Vulgate, produced in the 5th century to make the Bible accessible to all, became a means of keeping God’s Word hidden. Almost all Catholic priests were biblically illiterate, so one wonders who these so-called true believers were and how were they reading God’s Word to the point of wearing it out. For centuries, manuscripts were preserved, even when the Catholic priests could no longer understand them.

Burgon, Miller, and Scrivener in their second argument maintained that the Byzantine text was used by the church for far more centuries, which proved its integrity, as God would never allow the church to use a corrupt text. B. F. Westcott wrote, “A corrupted Bible is a sign of a corrupt church, a Bible mutilated or imperfect, a sign of a church not yet raised to complete perfection of the truth.” (The Bible in the Church, 1864, 1875) The reader can determine for himself or herself if it is mere coincidence that as the church grew corrupt, the most corrupt manuscript of all grew right along with it for a thousand years.

As was stated earlier, Lucian produced the Syrian text, renamed the Byzantine text. About 290 C.E., some of his associates made various subsequent alterations, which deliberately combined elements from earlier types of text, and this text was adopted about 380 C.E. At Constantinople, it became the predominant form of the New Testament throughout the Greek-speaking world. The text was also edited, with harmonized parallel accounts, grammar corrections, and abrupt transitions modified to produce a smooth text. This was not a faithfully accurate copy. As we had just learned earlier under the corruption period, after Constantine legalized Christianity, giving it equal status with the pagan religions, it was much easier for those possessing manuscripts to have them copied. In fact, Constantine had ordered 50 copies of the whole of the Bible for the church in Constantinople. Over the next four centuries or so, the Byzantine Empire and the Greek-speaking church were the dominant factors as to why this area saw their text becoming the standard. It had nothing to do with it being the better text, i.e., the text that more accurately reflected the original. From the eighth century forward, the corrupt Byzantine text was the standard text and had displaced all others; it makes up about 95 percent of all manuscripts that we have of the Christian Greek Scriptures.

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Burgon, Miller, and Scrivener in their third argument continued with the belief that it would be foolish to set aside thousands of manuscript witnesses (the Byzantine text-type) for a few supposedly early manuscript witnesses (the Alexandrian text-type). But in truth, the majority of anything does not automatically mean that it is the best or even correct. Today we can easily produce thousands of copies of a faulty manuscript with a machine, and every copy displays the same errors. If we were to hand-copy the same manuscript a thousand times, obvious errors probably would be corrected in many copies, but new errors would be introduced, many of them probably the result of a well-intended “correction.” A textual criticism principle that has been derived from this observation is that manuscripts should be weighed (i.e. for value), not counted.

In their fourth argument, Burgon, Miller, and Scrivener maintained that the Byzantine text-type was actually older and superior to the Alexandrian text-type. To refute this, we can go back to our patristic quotations, which reveal the Alexandrian text-type as earlier than the Byzantine text-type. Greenlee writes, “The fallacy in this argument was that the antiquity of a ‘Syrian’ (i.e., Byzantine) reading could be shown only when the Byzantine text was supported by one of the pre-Byzantine texts, which proved nothing in favor of the Byzantine, since WH maintained that Syrian readings were largely derived from the pre-Syrian texts. That the traditional text was intrinsically superior was more nearly a matter of subjective opinion; but an extensive comparison of text-types has left most scholars convinced that the late text [Byzantine] is in general inferior, not superior.” –  (Greenlee, Introduction to New Testament Textual Criticism 1995, 76-7)

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INTO THE VOID

CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY

The Holy Spirit_02 Explaining the Doctrine of the Last Things Understaning Creation Account
Homosexuality and the Christian second coming Cover Where Are the Dead
The Holy Spirit_02 THE CREATION DAYS OF GENESIS gift of prophecy
CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY Vol. CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY Vol. II CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY Vol. III
CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY Vol. IV CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY Vol. V MIRACLES
Human Imperfection HUMILITY

CHILDREN’S BOOKS

READ ALONG WITH ME READ ALONG WITH ME READ ALONG WITH ME

PRAYER

Powerful Weapon of Prayer Power Through Prayer How to Pray_Torrey_Half Cover-1

TEENS-YOUTH-ADOLESCENCE-JUVENILE

THERE IS A REBEL IN THE HOUSE thirteen-reasons-to-keep-living_021 Waging War - Heather Freeman
Young Christians DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS 40 day devotional (1)
Homosexuality and the Christian THE OUTSIDER RENEW YOUR MIND

CHRISTIAN LIVING

GODLY WISDOM SPEAKS Wives_02 HUSBANDS - Love Your Wives
ADULTERY 9781949586053
WALK HUMBLY WITH YOUR GOD THE BATTLE FOR THE CHRISTIAN MIND (1)-1 WAITING ON GOD
ADULTERY 9781949586053 PROMISES OF GODS GUIDANCE
APPLYING GODS WORD-1 For As I Think In My Heart_2nd Edition Put Off the Old Person
Abortion Booklet Dying to Kill The Pilgrim’s Progress
WHY DON'T YOU BELIEVE WAITING ON GOD WORKING FOR GOD
YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE Let God Use You to Solve Your PROBLEMS THE POWER OF GOD
HOW TO OVERCOME YOUR BAD HABITS-1 GOD WILL GET YOU THROUGH THIS A Dangerous Journey
ARTS, MEDIA, AND CULTURE Christians and Government Christians and Economics

CHRISTIAN COMMENTARIES

Book of Philippians Book of James Book of Proverbs Book of Esther
CHRISTIAN DEVOTIONALS
40 day devotional (1) Daily Devotional_NT_TM Daily_OT
DEVOTIONAL FOR CAREGIVERS DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS DEVOTIONAL FOR TRAGEDY
DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS 40 day devotional (1)

CHURCH ISSUES, GROWTH, AND HISTORY

LEARN TO DISCERN Deception In the Church FLEECING THE FLOCK_03
The Church Community_02 THE CHURCH CURE Developing Healthy Churches
FIRST TIMOTHY 2.12 EARLY CHRISTIANITY-1

Apocalyptic-Eschatology [End Times]

Explaining the Doctrine of the Last Things Identifying the AntiChrist second coming Cover
ANGELS AMERICA IN BIBLE PROPHECY_ ezekiel, daniel, & revelation

CHRISTIAN FICTION

Oren Natas_JPEG Sentient-Front Seekers and Deceivers
Judas Diary 02 Journey PNG The Rapture

[1] Bruce Manning Metzger, United Bible Societies, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, Second Edition a Companion Volume to the United Bible Societies’ Greek New Testament (4th Rev. Ed.) (London; New York: United Bible Societies, 1994), xxi.

[2] Bruce Manning Metzger, United Bible Societies, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, Second Edition a Companion Volume to the United Bible Societies’ Greek New Testament (4th Rev. Ed.) (London; New York: United Bible Societies, 1994), xxiv.

[3] J. Harold Greenlee, The Text of the New Testament: From Manuscript to Modern Edition (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2012), 41–42.

[4] J. Harold Greenlee, The Text of the New Testament: From Manuscript to Modern Edition (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2012), 73-4.

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