Nerdy Note From Church History

Source:bible

Textus Receptus type manuscripts and versions have existed as the majority of texts for almost 2000 years.

All of the Apostolic Churches used the Textus Receptus
Peshitta (150 A.D.) was based on the Textus Receptus
Papyrus 66 used the Textus Receptus
The Italic Church in the Northern Italy (157 A.D.) used the Textus Receptus
The Gallic Church of Southern France (177 A.D.) used the Textus Receptus
The Celtic Church used the Textus Receptus
The Waldensians used the Textus Receptus
The Gothic Version of the 4th or 5th century used the Textus Receptus
Curetonian Syriac is basically the Textus Receptus
Vetus Itala is from Textus Receptus
Codex Washingtonianus of Matthew used the Textus Receptus
Codex Alexandrinus in the Gospels used the Textus Receptus
The vast majority of extant New Testament manuscripts all used the Textus Receptus (99% of them)
The Greek Orthodox Church used the Textus Receptus.

Greek manuscript evidences point to a Byzantine/Textus Receptus majority.

85% of papyri used Textus Receptus, only 13 represent text of Westcott-Hort
97% of uncial manuscripts used Textus Receptus, only 9 manuscripts used text of WH
99% of minuscule manuscripts used Textus Receptus, only 23 used text WH
100% of lectionaries used Textus Receptus.

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One thought on “Nerdy Note From Church History

  1. If I considered myself a “nerd” I would be insulted by your title. Here is why:

    Every statement above that includes the phrase “used the Textus Receptus” is guilty of a confused historical anachronism. The “Textus Receptus” as such did not exist until after 1611, 1633 to be exact. Even that edition is not identical in every particular to any of the editions published during the previous 100+ years. It certainly was not available for “use” prior to that. When we find it being referred to in that way as some monolithic entity without careful qualification we may be sure that what we are reading is either confused due to ignorance or intentionally prejudicial. The matter at hand may not be so easily reduced or simplistically dismissed.

    This “retroactive application” of the label, regardless of how many “supporters of the Textus Receptus” do so, is unwarranted, unhelpful, and inaccurate. To extend this even beyond Erasmus to “retroactively” encompass what are perceived to be “Textus Receptus type manuscripts and versions” in the early centuries of the transmission of the text begs the question, and assumes what must be proved. To do so on the basis of agreement with the Textus Receptus cannot dismiss the fact that such agreement is a matter of degree, is not absolute, and must be examined on a case by case basis. See the “Main Page” from the site you linked for where these erroneous assumptions and practices are stipulated and promoted: http://textus-receptus.com/wiki/Main_Page [accessed 26 AUG 2014].

    That readings found in the various editions of the Greek New Testament published from 1516 to 1894 may be found in the majority of extant manuscripts representing the Byzantine textform including some of the most ancient witnesses is something that I am firmly convinced of, and stoutly defend. That being said, I can no more countenance “Textus Receptus-onlyism” anymore than I can tolerate “King James-onlyism. Such revisionist propaganda and careless publishing as is evidenced in this article do not help the cause of those of us who: 1) see the true Textus Receptus as a significant waypoint in the process of textual criticism, 2) appreciate it as a basis to work from as we defend the work of Robinson and Pierpont in the Byzantine textform, and Hodges and Farstad and others in the Majority Text, and, 3) believe that the labor of textual criticism must be in engaged in with a maximum of objective scholarship rather than subjective and simplistic reductionism.

    Another point that must be addressed is the specific dating of versions in the article. For example, 150 A.D. is listed for the Peshitta, 157 for the Italic, and 177 for the Gallic. All of these dates are open to question, and appear to be at least two centuries prior to any documentation we have for these versions. No documentation that I am aware of for any extant copies of these versions supports these dates. Whatever evidence that we do have for readings dating from the period cited is so limited that to refer to any of the sources as using the “Textus Receptus”, or even to be of that “type” is to draw conclusions that exceed these limits.

    How does a papyrus, an uncial or a miniscule manuscript “use” the text of Westcott and Hort? The same way that others “used the Textus Receptus”?

    Finally, the percentages cited for “Greek manuscript evidences” in relation “to a Byzantine/Textus Receptus majority” (not “Textus Receptus” now?) need to be substantiated, especially when figures like “100% of lectionaries” are thrown around. Where did these figures come from? Do I really need to document lectionary readings which neither support the Textus Receptus, the Byzantine textform, or the Majority Text?

    I am left wondering if the author of this article has ever really engaged in textual criticism, or is aware of how many variants in the Textus Receptus have no evidence documenting them whatsoever?

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