DID JESUS TELL A LIE?
John 7:8 -- This Verse Reveals the Typical Assumptions of NT Scholars...
All Modern Translations of the New Testament Portray Jesus as a Deceiver!
Sure seems like our modern biblical scholars have messed up this passage in a big way. Before the 20th century, there was no problem here at all... And then, on the thinnest of grounds, our modern textual wizards have decided that the original Gospel of John portrayed Jesus as deceiving his brothers! So the scholars revised the traditional Greek text, and thereby gave grounds to such a grave accusation against the founder of Christianity.
And in order to do this, it seems like they had to cook the books just a bit...
But what is really surprising about this passage is how little attention it has received among the mainstream scholars and commentary writers in the recent decades. It seems like nobody has really looked into the textual situation with this passage -- what our ancient manuscripts of John actually say here -- for a very long time... So I am trying to fill this void with the present study (January 2004).
This is a very long article, so I broke it down into 5 parts.
Part 1 -- Here is the general introduction to this problem, where the basic situation is already described in some detail... The following parts mostly fill out the particulars, and provide more evidence for my conclusion that, in the original John, Jesus was not portrayed as a deceiver. Part 2 -- Now we will be taking a look at what the ancient Aramaic and Latin manuscripts of John actually say in this passage. Sure seems like their evidence has been misrepresented at least to some extent in our mainstream editions of the Greek NT. Part 3 -- Some additional misrepresentation by the UBS Editorial Committee -- the scholars whose responsibility it is to determine how your gospels should read in Greek. Unfortunately, it looks like they have misrepresented the Diatessaronic evidence, as well, for this passage... Part 4 -- It also looks like the Editorial Committee neglected to mention some very interesting variants for this passage -- as found in a number of ancient manuscripts -- the variants that may well represent the earliest text of John. Also, a somewhat related verse John 7:5 is analysed briefly in this part of my study. Part 5 -- Finally, here I review a recent article by Prof. Chrys C. Caragounis, JESUS, HIS BROTHERS, AND THE JOURNEY TO JERUSALEM (JOHN 7:8-10), that was published in Svensk Exegetisk Arsbok 63 (1998). This is the only in-depth textual study of this passage that has appeared in the last few decades... Prof. Caragounis concludes that Jesus was not portrayed as a deceiver in the original Gospel of John.
I think this is an extremely revealing study. The wilful blindness of our mainstream biblical scholars, their all too evident prejudices, their unwillingness or inability to examine the hard textual evidence objectively -- all this is now laid bare, I believe... What arrogance had they shown in rejecting the traditional Majority text of the gospels -- as represented for us by the King James Version of the Bible -- and by replacing it with a newly minted version of their own!
So I fully agree with the following statement by Dr. Wilbur Pickering. The extremely corrupt and prejudiced textual scholars of our day cannot be trusted in revising the Scriptures. The modern "Critical Text" of the NT -- that they somehow managed to foist upon the unsuspecting believers -- is not any sort of an improvement at all... To the contrary, it should be considered as an unqualified disaster.While, myself, I am a supporter of the Aramaic textual tradition of the gospels, KJV/Byzantine text obviously stands a lot closer to the ancient Aramaic gospels than anything produced by our modern "revisers".
"The distressing realization is forced upon us that the 'progress' of the past hundred years has been precisely in the wrong direction -- our modern versions and critical texts are several times farther removed from the original than are the Authorised Version (KJV) and TR! How could such a calamity have come upon us?!" -- Dr. Wilbur Pickering
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