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Thoughts on the Textus Receptus vs Critical Text Debate w/ Dwayne Green

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The Truth Network Radio
November 16, 2022 3:38 pm

Thoughts on the Textus Receptus vs Critical Text Debate w/ Dwayne Green

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November 16, 2022 3:38 pm

“Lions, and tigers, and bears. Oh my!”

Textus Receptus, and Modern Critical Text, and Comma Johanneum. Oh my!

The Apostate Paul, here. No sooner had I began attending a Christian church back in 2010, and declared myself an “ex-Mormon Christian” online did Latter-day Saints begin to challenge my belief in the Bible as the reliable Word of God. I quickly learned of critical Biblical scholars like Bart Ehrman, and had to bone up on terms like those above. I had to try to make sense of the many debates around text-types, and the impacts they have on English translations of the Bible. As I did so, I wondered how my former co-religionists were so knowledgeable on these topics when they were fairly new to me. Was it because I didn’t attend BYU? Is that where they learned to use such tactics to bolster the LDS claim to additional Scripture?

As I studied, I reached tentative conclusions that I discussed with others on Facebook as these issues came up. “So the Comma Johanneum isn’t in the earliest manuscripts, does that necessarily mean that it was an intentional corruption of the text? And even if it isn’t original, so what? Textual criticism can trace to where it seems to have been introduced in the transmission of the text.” When I did so, I was challenged vigorously by a KJV-only Christian.

It was a veritable mine field to try to navigate as a new Christian trying to defend his faith against volleys from Mormon online apologists. I struggled to get my mind around the breadth of the topic of textual criticism. Part of the answer for me was to attend a Christian Seminary to seek a degree in Biblical Studies. Not everyone can do that.

In this episode we welcome Dwayne Green to help listeners get the lay of the land regarding this topic. He’s very knowledgeable and has a YouTube Channel that is very helpful. Follow him if you want to dig deeper into topics related to textual criticism of the Bible.


Outer brightness from Mormon to Jesus. In some of you the only thing you've ever seen of Christianity is a dead religion. But I serve a living God who has sent us a living Savior.

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Don't let anything stand between you and coming to know Him. If you choose to become inactive or to leave the restored Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, where will you go? What will you do? Did I warn myself again? No. He made me alive together with Christ.

Listen, I can no more manufacture the second birth than I manufactured the first one. Welcome back, Fireflies, to this episode of Outer Brightness. We're very happy and excited today to have a guest with us, Dwayne Green. He's kind of a friend of mine. He's been we know each other from various Facebook groups. We we have we're in the you might be a heretic group on Facebook or in several other groups.

It's kind of a comedy group where Christians come together and we we have a lot of jokes, but we do share a lot of great theology there. And so I've had a lot of interaction with Dwayne. He's really great guy. Also, he invited me on his program on his YouTube channel. So we're going to post links for everyone to go check out his channel.

He does a lot of great stuff, particularly focuses on Bible reviews and textual criticism. And we're going to get into some of that today in our program. So I just like to say hi, Dwayne, and welcome to Outer Brightness. Great.

Thanks, Matthew. All right, Dwayne. So we're going to get you out on the chopping block, if that sounds all right.

Oh, no, my neck. All right. So for those of our listeners who don't know who you are, could you give us a little bit of your background? So like where you grew up, you know, what kind of church background you might have grown up in your conversion story to Christ, if you'd like to share that.

And if maybe when you grew up and came to Christ, did you change your convictions or denomination or did you stick with it? So just, you know, it's kind of a blanket statement. Give us anything you'd like to tell us about yourself. Yeah, sure.

So I've been kind of all over the map. So we grew up in a home that was functionally atheist. You know, we had some on paper deals with us being high Anglican. And even today, I still don't even know what high Anglican is. But either way, that's what what we were technically considered under the religion questions on all the questionnaires.

Right. But yeah, we didn't have any church growing up. We never did any of that or anything like that until it was maybe about 15. So when I was about 15, I came to know the Lord. It was one of those classic like say this prayer. And I'd said this prayer and I know people get a little upset with say this prayer. You know, I'm thinking of Paul Washer. Right.

But I said it and I meant it. And I believe that the Lord saved me that instant. So I've been a Christian since. And when I first became a believer, I found myself in the Baptist church. Not not just any Baptist church, but a fundamentalist Baptist church.

So like hardcore King James version only like this. This is kind of where I began my Christian walk. So I went to that church for a little while and then found myself in a Pentecostal church a little bit later down the road. So this was maybe two or three years down the road just serving the Lord in the Pentecostal church. I know some of the theology there is a little different than what most of my viewers are probably used to, or maybe even most of the people I interact with online are probably used to. But there's been some good changes in the POC, which is the denomination I'm in now. So from that church, we hit up some various community churches in the area.

Nothing too crazy. Just your typical, I don't know, like typical community church. Right. They believe the resurrection. Most of them are continuationists.

I'm a continuationist for those who don't know. And yeah, we just kind of found our home in those sorts of churches. Now, it's interesting because being in the Baptist church had given me a love for the word of God. Like, I mean, it wasn't all bad in the fundamentalist Baptist church. And I know when we hear the phrase fundamentalist, we think, oh, it's bad.

It's evil. But my experience there wasn't really all that bad at all. They really took the time to instill the value of God's word. And I think that's where my love for the Bible, for textual criticism, for the original languages and all that, I think it really stems from that point and actually became a shield in a sense for me later when I started attending some of the more, I would say, continuationist churches. So I like to think I have a good balance there.

But, you know, it's not always what I think. So I try to present the Bible as the, you know, the standard wherever it is I go. So that's like super quick. Now, as of today, I'm a pastor of a small Pentecostal church in central Ontario, a small congregation, about 30 people. And I preach and work at the church full time. And that's that's what I do now. And then any spare time I have is focused on building the YouTube channel. All right.

Awesome. Yeah, I think I've seen some of the sermons you preach that you put on your YouTube channel. So is that is that why you started the YouTube channel is to kind of post sermons or what originally got you interested in making a YouTube channel and, you know, focusing on Bible reviews, that kind of thing?

Yeah. If you if you go back into my my videos, you can go back like 10 years and 10 years. I had a small smattering of videos. I think I made six or seven just about various things I was learning about Greek. And I just figured I was a really good place to share what I was learning, because if you if you don't share what you learn, you tend to lose what you learn. So I found it to be an instrumental way to keep up on on the Greeks. So that's how it initially started.

And then about, I would say, the start of the pandemic. I was like, I have started a YouTube channel. I have all this knowledge and I have this interest in textual criticism and and things of that nature. So I'm going to do it. So I was a little fuzzy at first.

Where to start? So you can see where I posted some sermons, I posted some teachings, I posted I think I got a singing clip on there and some mandolin stuff on there. But since then, the channel has really focused.

And and this is ironic, not ironic, but I forget who it was. Someone in the heretics forums actually said, just just make sure whatever you do, do what you really enjoy doing. And so I really enjoy doing the textual critical stuff.

So King James stuff, history of the English Bible, that kind of stuff. That's where I really enjoyed. And so that's kind of the direction and the niche that the channel has hit.

And I think it's it's doing really well. And that's interesting. I'm I'm curious about your conversion experience and the prayer that you said. How did that come about? Was it was it listening to a radio program? Did you hear a sermon at a church? Like, how did that come about? So when when I was younger kid, we lived in a in a townhouse and literally on the other side of the backyard, you just jumped the fence and you're in the schoolyard. That's how close you were.

So there was this ministry, I think they were called because he lives ministry, something like that. They they rented out the gymnasium of the school and they came in one day with like, you know, pops and chips and hot dogs and all the stuff that kids like. So I was like, oh, I'm going to go pick out. It's going to be great. So I went and picked out.

It was great. And then they brought us into the gym for a Bible lesson. And I think our first Bible lesson was Adam and Eve. And they talked about how, you know, we were sinners and how Adam sinned and Eve sinned. And, you know, you know the story. So at the end of that, a man who I talked to today, brother Wayne, awesome man of God.

Great example. He pulled me aside and I was with my friends, John and Chris. And he looked, looked at me dead in the eye and said, if you die today, are you going to go to heaven? And I remember looking over at my friends, John and Chris, and they were like, yeah, I'm going. And he's like, I'm going and I'm here thinking like I'm going to hell all by myself.

So I said, no, I'm not sure. And he led me right there in, you know, the quote unquote sinner's prayer. And that's when I really began to begin following the Lord. I got a Bible. I was reading it continually. And instead of playing gym stuff in the gym class, I'd spend my week, I think it was Wednesday nights there with an hour.

I would take the gym time and I would sit with this guy and we would go over something in the scriptures. And it was a tremendous time of learning for me. Oh, that's great. So he really poured into your life. Absolutely.

Awesome. And so your convictions in terms of the gifts of the Spirit. So we did an episode on gifts of the Spirit and we talked about continuationism versus cessationism. So, so did those kind of develop or grow as you studied the Bible or did the Bible, your reading of the Bible kind of just confirm what you'd already kind of been raised in or how did that come about?

Yeah, this is a tough one, right? Because I wasn't necessarily raised a Christian. My idea of church before I became a Christian was, you know, like what people would think of like Catholicism, right?

You got these guys in funny robes and hats and they go in front, wave this smelly stuff all over. That was sort of my idea of Christianity before. But I would say in some of my discipleship with, I call him Brother Wayne now, even though he's like my grandpa, but with some of the discipleship stuff with him and some of the stuff I learned in the continuationist church. Now, I know that the Baptist Church, which I initially went to, kind of frowned upon that, but I couldn't shake or I couldn't get from the scriptures where exactly the cessation of the gifts had occurred. Because I had gone in thinking, well, if they if they've ceased, if there's no more, then there's got to be somewhere in the scriptures that tells us that this is it.

And I just can't find it. Even to this day, I still can't find a passage that is as explicit as covet the gifts, covet the better gifts. But there's nothing as explicit saying, OK, only covet them until then and then and then you're good. So that's I guess that's kind of kind of a mix. Yeah, because you said you grew up in a high Anglican church and then you kind of changed. Well, it was just on paper, right?

So when it came to like government forms, if you had to fill out the religion section, it was high. That's what my parents always put down. Gotcha.

You know, if you were to ever be baptized, which you never will, because I'm not going to let you that it's going to be high. So so how when you started getting really serious and working through the discipleship meetings with with brother Wayne and brother Wayne. Right. Yep.

Yeah. I wouldn't even call them meetings like it was just like almost like mentorship. OK, is probably be better out as you started getting more and more involved in being a Christian. How did your parents react to that?

Did they were they excited about it? Did they attend the Baptist Church with you? No, no, no, not at all.

No, no. So my sister ended up coming to church with me for a little bit, but she she didn't really stick with it in talks with her. She just suggested it's not it's not her deal.

So she sort of walked away from from the Baptist Church and never, never came back. My my dad is he's he's OK with it. Like he's he's pretty cool with it.

He's he's kind of like, you know, whatever floats your boat kind of deal. But my mom was pretty resistant from from the beginning, although she did eventually warm up. It took about three years to for them to allow me to get baptized.

Right. So, yeah, there was some initial resistance, but they did come to accept the fact that I was a Christian and I wasn't going to not be a Christian anymore. So was that resistance over denominational differences or just tradition? Oh, no, they weren't Christian. They were they weren't Christians. They were functionally atheists.

Right. So they just didn't like the idea of of I can think of one incident, but which kind of typifies the view. So when we were first when I was very young and my Christian walk, I had this this little New Testament Bible. And I remember leaving it on the table. One day I went out to play and my my papa came over for a visit and he apparently saw the Bible there on the table. And I didn't know about it until later. But when I when I got home, my mom pulled me aside and said, hey, you can't leave this hanging around here. Papa saw that.

And he's like, what are you turning religious now? So it's like a multigenerational thing. Right. OK. Yeah. But I mean, it wasn't terrible. They didn't they didn't like what's the term? They didn't go out of their way to make my life miserable.

They were generally, you know, as much as they didn't like it, they allowed it. So I guess it's better for a kid to be in a youth group than to be out on the street doing drugs or something. Right. Thanks for sharing that.

And in my curiosity, I appreciate it. Yeah. Yeah. I don't know.

I've heard of some pretty crazy stuff that happens in youth group, you know, the Holy Ghost, hokey pokey, playing in the spirit, that kind of stuff. Yeah. Yeah.

So, yeah, it's interesting. We have we have a friend, Steven Panicker. He's been on our program before. He's got a YouTube channel called Mormon Book Reviews.

I can't believe I almost forgot. And he kind of started off a channel, too, by just reviewing books related to Mormonism. And so that's kind of how his YouTube channel started and then started to grow. And now he's got a lot of guests. So it's kind of a little bit similar to your channel where it kind of just started off small and something he was interested in.

You're interested in and just kind of grew from there. And now you've had all amazing guests that have been on your program. I mean, there's one in particular that's pretty awesome.

You know, I'm not going to mention who, but, you know. Yeah. Yeah. In regards to your guests, I was I was counting all the number of the guests you had on. I counted at least a dozen and I probably missed somebody. But you've had all different kinds of guests that are on different spectrums in terms of what they believe about the Bible, which version of the Bible to read, all that. So this is in the past two years, I think, even you've had about a dozen or more guests on your program.

Yeah. So what were some of your favorite interviews and why? Yeah, this is it's a tough question.

You sent me the the questions beforehand and even with a little bit of time to think about it. It's it's a tough question because there's I think there's an element of just about every every conversation that I really enjoyed. I think just from like a conversational like I don't want to say buddy buddy, but just like a conversational standpoint, my conversation with Stephen Hackett, just about textual criticism generally. He's he's got a small YouTube channel. I think he's somewhere around fifteen hundred subscribers. But he he does a lot of stuff with textual criticism, comparing some of the original texts and and he does a little bit of Bible studies.

His channel is called Biblical Studies and Reviews. Anyway, he's got great, great content. But I think as far as like understanding is concerned, we're at about a similar level. I would think he might even be a little bit more smarter than I am.

But that just means that because we're similar in apt to the topic, we can have really awesome discussion. And I think you can see that kind of happening in that three part series. But then the conversation with Dr. Jeff Riddle, that was really good. I appreciated that because he was exceptionally gracious with me coming from a position of, well, I don't know if your position is real, but I want to learn about it. And so he took I think we spent about an hour and 40 minutes talking.

We condensed it down to about an hour for the video or for the three part series. But that kind of set off a discussion about the Texas Receptus. I had a number of guests on to to continue that conversation. And he's going to come on again because there's a couple of things in the discussion that appeared to be not inconclusive, but mutually exclusive. That's the word that seemed to be mutually exclusive in his position. I was hoping that he'd be able to come on and clarify that so we at least can understand each other. And that's kind of the point of the channel is, you know, we may not accept each other's views, but we can at least understand where we're coming from.

And that's that's the journey I'm sort of taking here. Other notable conversations. James Snap Jr. in the text defending the long ending of Mark.

So for your viewers, if you happen to know what Byzantine priority is, that would be a position that I would hold that the original text is best found in the Byzantine text type. I haven't made any videos explaining that further, but probably will at some point. But he, James Snap Jr. really has some solid work, in my opinion. I don't think there's any rival to the work that he's done in defending the long ending of Mark 16.

So he puts up a pretty good, pretty good case, probably one of the best cases, in my opinion. And yeah, like I said, you know, if I'm missing someone, Elijah, Dr. Gurri with CBGM, some interesting stuff there. And I got a couple couple ones coming up in the near future. So I can say Richard Brash is going to come on and talk about preservation. That's a conversation I'm looking forward to and looking forward to having Dr. Michael Brown on at some point to talk about Old Testament textual criticism. We attempted a recording this week, but we had a power failure and I lost everything. But he's gracious enough to allow me to rebook.

So we'll be hopefully doing that again sometime in the near future. But yeah, Mark Ward, another great guy, he's done a lot as far as the King James Bible is concerned and what he calls false friends, words that are hard to understand, that kind of thing. Again, if you love the King James version, he's got some solid stuff on there as well. Now, of course, his ministry kind of lends to leading people to modernize, so to not necessarily stay with the KJV, but to use something a little more modern. But even if you like to just retain your use of the King James version, he's got some solid helps, especially with what he calls false friends. So, yeah, I do get a chance to check out his channel, too, if you're a King James version person.

So, you know what, I could sit here and talk all day about my videos, so I'll stop there. Yeah, I was listening to your interview with Timothy Berg. I thought that was really interesting. He said some things about the differences between the KJV and the new KJV, right? And specifically just kind of talking about that there are differences in the text and they're not significant. A lot of the things that he was saying there kind of apply to text criticism in general as well. Coming from a Latter-day Saint background, as both Matthew and I do, text criticism is kind of a thing that maybe Latter-day Saints look at as bolstering their position. Oh, there's been changes. That's exactly what the Book of Mormon says, right?

The text is corrupted. And for me, one of the transformative experiences that I had was shortly before I served an LDS mission, I went to BYU to see the Dead Sea Scrolls traveling exhibit. It was at BYU back in 1999, and I went and saw it that spring. And standing there kind of before the replica of the great Isaiah scroll that was found at Qumran, it kind of hit me. Wow, there is ancient evidence for the biblical text that absolutely does not exist for the Book of Mormon. And that question kind of stuck in my mind and stayed there really until I ended up leaving the LDS Church.

But that was really a transformative experience for me. So from your perspective, can you say a little bit about why text criticism is so important and what it does for us and how it bolsters our view of the reliability of the text? Rather than bolstering the Latter-day Saint position. Yeah, so text criticism is interesting. It's not necessarily this large single group of thinking. There's multiple ideas within textual criticism.

I'll just say that outright. The modern critical text. So what that is is currently the standard Greek text that's used in Bible translation. And that's put together by a team of smart people who look at manuscripts and sift through them and find the errors and find where scribal mistakes have happened and stuff like that.

They sort through them and they put the readings together to come up with what is eventually the New Testament in the original language. Now, there's a couple sort of thoughts behind that. The one is to take the modern idea. And that's what they call eclecticism, where they just take readings from here, there and elsewhere. You know, they're not just doing this haphazardly, right?

They're making comparisons. And that's all in an effort to restore the original. So the idea behind it or the reason why it seems that we need to do that is because our New Testament is based off of the writings that came off of the inspired apostles. And the unfortunate thing about it is the originals, the ones that actually came off the hands of these apostles 2000 years ago, are long gone.

They were away probably from use and they're just gone. So all we have left really to rely on are the copies of these originals. And so that's why the work of textual criticism is generally needed.

Now, there are some groups who would say, no, we don't necessarily need that work. I did a long, long standing series of videos starting with Jeff Riddle about confessional bibliology, and the confessional bibliology position is that, well, the original text is found amongst the printed editions of the Textus Receptus. So this would be an indication of textual criticism light, right? So they believe that God had sovereignly chosen the TR tradition to preserve his word and that there's a long list of discussions I've had about that. Now, I'm not entirely convinced and I think we still need to do some reconstruction work. But the third option, aside from the TR advocacy or confessional bibliology and the modern critical text, which is that eclectic reading from all over the place, would be what I hold to, which would be Byzantine priority. And that is that 85% of the, I think it's 5700 plus manuscripts now in Greek, 85% of those are representative of the Byzantine type text. So we can, I think if we reconstruct those, then we would be a lot closer to the originals and then the critical text. Now, why is this important or what's the big deal?

Is this even, I don't think so. I don't think it's as big of a problem as often is made out to be. And of course, I have an entire channel where that's what we discuss. But the reality is, is the nature of the difference between our modern critical text and the Textus Receptus is so minor, is so minute, right? There's a couple of big passages that are often discussed. So Mark 16, for example, Mark 16, 9 through 20, the so-called long endings with snakes and poison.

Everybody remembers the debate with Jeff Durbin and James White with the guy holding the antifreeze up. You know, he's poking at Mark 16. That's typically seen by a lot of scholars as not being original. But there is a growing number of individuals who are seeing that as part of the text. You're going to see that is solidified in the Textus Receptus tradition, the Byzantine text type. But those in the modern critical text tend to shy away from it and say, well, we don't necessarily think it's original. Again, I had a chance to talk with Elijah Hickson and Peter Gury on that one.

And that's kind of the direction they take. But aside from those couple of readings, the story of the woman caught in adultery. There's a couple of small passages in Acts like the Ethiopian eunuch, for example, or in John, you know, the angel.

We call him the angel Jacuzzi, right, because he stirs the waters. But those are typically not in the older manuscripts, but they are typically found in the vast majority of, you know, relatively recent manuscripts. So ultimately, the question comes down to do we take a few older manuscripts? Is the oldest really the best? Or do we take the vast majority of them, even though they're a little bit younger than the oldest ones? So, again, I tend to favor the majority versus the tiny bit of younger ones for a number of reasons.

But one day I'll get into that. The takeaway that I love from all of it is that we can do this work, right? The scholars can do this work and work to kind of reconstruct what the original text was. You know, sometimes you'll hear critics say, oh, well, there's been so many changes in the text of the New Testament and therefore it's not reliable. But then you have someone like Bart Ehrman, you know, who when questioned, you know, what does the original text say? You know, he'll say, well, we essentially have it.

Yeah. And I love when he admits that because, you know, sometimes you get someone like a Latter-day Saint who will see this and say, oh, well, there must be stuff missing that somehow we could smuggle Mormonism into the text somehow because of these changes. And it just doesn't happen.

That's not what we find through text criticism. A vast majority of changes. Here's a really common one is like orthographic things. So in English, if I say I have a bat, like a baseball bat, I have a bat.

I would say a bat. Right. But if it's an apple, I would say an apple and I would put an N on the end of the A for no other reason than the fact that it sounds awkward if you do not put that N there.

Right. If you ever like try saying apple, it sounds weird. So we put an N there just to make it sound better, has no other purpose, no other meaning, makes no grammatical function or anything. It's just there to sound better. So Greek has that and it's called the movable new. So sometimes if a verb ends in a vowel, they'll slap an N on there or a new on there just to make it sound better coming to the next word. There's there's a couple other instances of orthographic changes.

Again, they make no meaning, no changes to the meaning of the text. Another common one would be the definite article. So in English, the definite article is the word the. Right.

So we put the word the in front of things if we want to specify what item it is. If I say grab me a flashlight. Right.

You just going to grab a right random one. I'm saying that because I got a flashlight right in view here. Or if I say grab the flashlight, you know that there's a specific one that I want you to grab. But in Greek, it takes on a number of different functions that that aren't exactly like its English counterpart. And so in Greek, they'll often put the word the in front of proper names. So if you're reading a passage about me, for example, and it said, you know, I went to the store and saw Duane there.

The literal Greek might be something like I went to the store and I saw the Duane there. So the word the in front of a proper name doesn't appear to have like consistent rules throughout the New Testament text. And so oftentimes it gets dropped or sometimes it gets added. And depending on the scribe that's copying, it might add it or not. But the reality is, is whether it's added or not to the name, the article makes zero difference in how we translate the proper names. So if a passage says and the Jesus said to him versus and Jesus said to him, it means exactly the same thing. There's no translatable difference there.

These are like the vast, vast majority of the differences between the various manuscripts. Yeah. Thank you, Duane. That's great. It's clear that you've become an expert on textual criticism. This is the kind of stuff that that I love. I don't know how much how many of our listeners are probably have their eyes glossed over right now. Right.

But I love it. I also I don't know if you've ever talked to or read a lot from Dr. Daniel Wallace, but he's also one of the big textual critical scholars in the field. And I remember watching a video from him where he's like, you know, there's more textual variants than there are words in the New Testament. But then he goes through that laundry list of items, like you said, like most of those changes don't make any difference. And just to prove the point, he said, you know, I just saw it one day. I got bored and he's like, let's let's see how many different ways I can write. John loves Mary in Greek.

And he just started making a list of all the different ways to say it in Greek. Sixteen. Yeah. There's there's several. Yeah. Several ways you could do it. And then he's like, well, I stopped because I got bored, but, you know, I could have.

He's like, I could have kept going. You know, there's different slightly different ways you can spell it or different ways you can rearrange the words. And yeah. So, you know, that's not translatable. You know, the different variants, the different ways you can write that. And so when we look at that and say, man, there's hundreds of thousands of variants in the New Testament.

Like, how do we even trust anything? But but then when you actually look at it, it's not so scary anymore. That's right. That's right.

Yeah. So so in my mind, I think the the discussion about variants, aside from maybe a few small ones, is usually blown right out of the water. It's usually blown way out of proportion. And typically people who will say that, well, there's too many variants. So we can't know are just parroting that they likely haven't taken a look for themselves.

They probably haven't compared the various New Testaments. So there really isn't a whole lot of stock in that. Awesome. Yeah. Yeah. It seems like a lot of accusations against the Bible are kind of overstated or overblown.

And I think there's even an area where you know, there's multiple areas where you kind of talk about criticisms that just don't hold much weight. Sure. So you said you grew up reading the King James Bible, right? Yes. Well, kind of sorta.

It's a weird situation. So Brother Wayne, he he gave me a new King James version very shortly after I became a Christian. And so I it's I think it's in a box somewhere we moved about six months ago and those boxes are still still packed. But I use that New King James version down to the nub. Like, I don't know if you've seen the movie Shawshank Redemption when he's got the little the little pickaxe and it's worn down to the nub. That's that's that New King James Bible. But I took that to church every day with me to the Baptist Church. And they continuously made fun of me for not having a real Bible. They continued to point that out to me every week, but I just continued to bring it anyway until one of them gave me a King James version.

And so I used it for a little bit. But yeah, they were very, very King James version only. So that that was kind of where I started my walk. But yeah, it definitely gave me an appreciation for the King James version.

And and again, that that's part of where my love for the KGB has sort of started. And so in more recent years, especially since you started your YouTube channel, did that appreciation grow? You know, or did you have a different view of the King James ever since? Or do you still have a love and appreciation for it, which I think is great. I still love the King James version. Right. My discussion with Timothy Berg was awesome in the seven part series and the myths. And then, you know, like I love that kind of stuff.

Something like that. The early English Bible is not just the King James, but we're talking like Tyndale, Matthew Coverdale, the Bishop's Bible, the Geneva. There's some really rich history amongst all of those old English Bibles. And it's certainly worthwhile to look into that. Right. Because we we owe a lot to people like Tyndale. You know, the fact that we have a modern Bible in our hands that we can read and understand, you know, that there was a very, very intense price paid for that.

Right. But yeah, I still love the King James version. And and as I'm as I'm looking into it, the things that I saw that were errors in it before, I'm actually beginning to see that they're not really as I had initially intended. An example would be about eight or nine years ago, I made a video about the translation of Pascha as Easter in Acts 12, verse four. The Bible or the King James version translators rendered the word Pascha as Easter in that one passage alone.

But 28 other times where they saw Pascha, they translated as Passover. So I concluded that, well, that's an error. And I'm going to make a video. And I made a video about it, telling about telling the whole world why it's an error.

And I was satisfied with that for about six years. And then recently I've come to realize, well, no, that's not an error. There was some stuff I didn't know.

So I will be releasing a video about that, actually, why I've changed my mind on that specific issue. But there's a couple other things, too, right? Some things that I thought were mistranslations. But it was really just my own fault for not understanding how the King James Bible was translated. People typically say, well, it was just translated from the Texas Receptus, but that's oversimplified. There are many other sources involved in the translation of the King James Bible.

So it wasn't just, you know, here's the TR, start translating. But there were influences from the Vulgate. There were influences from definitely the Bishop's Bible.

Right. That was kind of the point was to carry over the readings from the Bishop's Bible as much as they could. And then, you know, influence from the work of Tyndale and the Complutense and Polyglot even. So there's really a lot more to the translation of the KJV than just the Texas Receptus.

And if I understand correctly, maybe you can correct me since you're more knowledgeable. I think the term Texas Receptus didn't even come out and it wasn't really in use until after the King James Bible. Right. It was kind of like the Greek basis for the King James Bible. Like you said, it wasn't like they had one single text. They just kind of read it line by line. They were doing they were comparing different manuscripts. Right. As they're the King James translators were producing their texts and then they kind of came to like a finalized version. Right. Or am I misunderstanding the no. So the King James translators didn't have anything to do with the Texas Receptus. Right. They didn't actually like put that together.

That was big. It was it was a tradition started by Erasmus in 1516, I believe it is, and carried on through a number. You know, Estefan, as you probably heard, Theodore Beza was another editor. Scrivener in the late eighteen hundreds did some work.

There was the Elsevier brothers. But yeah, the term Texas Receptus turned out to be nothing more than an advertisement slogan, really. And I think this was the the Beza edition in the 1570s.

That's totally off the top of my head. But I hadn't been known as the Texas Receptus until then. Or maybe it was from the 1617s. I can't remember. I'm sure I got notes on it somewhere. But yeah, it was it was much later in the TR tradition that it actually took on the name Texas Receptus.

So if you had said that beforehand, they probably wouldn't have known what you're talking about. Korean, Texas Receptus. And for those of our listeners who don't know, Texas Receptus is just it's just Latin for received text. Yes. Yeah. Yeah. I just Googled and, you know, you know, Wikipedia, the source of all pure and true knowledge. That's right. Unquestionable truth. It says the origin was in the publisher's preference to the 1633 edition.

Sixteen. I was way off. It's all good. It was Beza's though, right? Was it Elsevier? Produced by Bonaventure and his nephew Abraham Elsevier. Elsevier. OK.

I was wrong on both counts. So that was after the 1611, right? The King James when it first came out. Yes. Yeah.

And so with the Texas Receptus for our listeners, we're talking about the critical texts that began to be developed using Greek manuscripts available at the time, beginning with Erasmus and then followed by other scholars. Yeah, I wouldn't call it critical text, though. You'll make a lot of people upset. OK. OK. So explain that. Why?

What's my error there? All right. Yeah. So the it's probably more more one of semantics. So what happened was when Erasmus put together the Texas Receptus, he took the manuscripts that he had at a time.

So in a sense, you're right. It is it is a critical text of what Erasmus had. And of course, people point out that he had a number of late manuscripts, 12th century, I think 12th century and later. So he had manuscripts which were like 12th century or later.

So people typically tried on the TR for being much later, much later. Of course, for those of us who are Byzantine or who like the TR would say it was representative. But either way, the in that sense, it's critical that he pulled together some, you know, a bunch of different manuscripts and collated readings from that.

So that's true. But today, now, when we say critical text, we're actually referring to I don't have it on hand with me here, but we're actually referring to the modern critical text, which is the Nestle Island text. So the manuscript pool is much greater in that text than in the Texas Receptus. And what typically happens is, is people who have a preference for the TR or a preference for the King James, even kind of see the critical text as this sort of like evil thing on the side that's, you know, pushing you away from God's word. And so to call the TR critical text is to, you know, sort of jab at them a little bit. Right. Or they would at least point out and say, hey, that's that the principles are totally different.

And it's true. Right. So the the formation of the current critical text is a totally different foundation than the formation of the Texas Receptus. Sure. Yeah.

No jab intended on my part of going for the former that you that you explain, you know, in the sense of gathering of Greek texts, kind of looking at them in comparison to to Latin and previous versions that that's kind of the beginning of that kind of textual criticism, so to speak, even though it's the field has come a long, long ways since since those early days. Yeah. Yeah, that's great. I feel like I'd be interested to talk all day and just to get just to absorb all your knowledge because I love this stuff.

Yeah. So like when for Latter-day Saint listeners who maybe are looking to pick up another Bible, you know, because most of them are only familiar with the King James Bible. So if they come to you or someone out of the LDS church and they're joining a Christian church and they say, I'm brand new to being a Christian. What Bible do I use? So if they came to you and ask that personally, you know, as a pastor and as someone who knows about the Bible, what kind of criteria would you consider in choosing a Bible for that person? You know, is it mostly about readability or do you really think, you know, you should prefer a Byzantine priority text or, you know, a critical text translation? So what kind of criteria would you use in helping them find a Bible?

Yeah. So as much as I say I'm a Byzantine guy, I'm a Byzantine guy. I'm not a stickler for it.

I don't think the differences are so huge to say, well, you don't have a Bible if you don't have a Byzantine text. I can't. I won't go that far.

I can't go that far in good conscience. My wife had an NIV and she was raised on it and she became a believer through it and she learned a lot from it. And I, you know, it's good.

God used the NIV in the life of my wife. Right. I can't deny that. People would be hard pressed to deny that God uses a number of translations. Now, does that mean every translation is good? Well, of course not. Right.

There's some we're going to steer away from. Right. New World Translation, the Passion Translation. There was a new one I saw recently. It was called the New European version.

That was like total anti-Trinitarian. But that's not to say all translations are good. But if somebody comes to me and asks what Bible translation should I use, I would lean New King James Version. I use that. I preach from it. I read from it.

I do everything from it. One, it's got a Texas Receptus textual base. For me, it's closer to the Byzantine type text than the CT.

So I think it's a little bit closer. The New King James Version that I use that are usually printed, they have those textual notes. Right. So they tell you when there's a difference between the critical text or the majority text.

That's another interesting one. And I like that because if I'm preaching, then I know based on the notes in my Bible that somebody in the congregation might have this reading and I might have to explain that. So that's another reason I like the New King James Version.

And another one, it's stable. It's not changing. It had an update in 1984 and had nothing since then. The ESV, sure, it's a good translation, but there's been about six or seven updates to it since it came out in 2001.

I can't remember. But yeah, I have a video on six good reasons to use the New King James Bible. Maybe you could link that or something. But that gives you a pretty good reason why I go the direction of the New King James Version. And it's not difficult to read. It still sounds like the Bible. It has that similar cadence as the KJV. So if you're coming from a KJV background, it will work out a little bit better for you, I think. If your English is a second language, then it gets a little bit different.

I'd probably recommend something like the CSP, the Christian Standard Bible or the Berean Study Bible, which is a relatively new one. So, yeah, I think that pretty much answers the question. Yeah, that's great. I remember Tim Frisch, who was on your program as well. He loves the CSP. And when I was visiting my parents last year, I watched his videos and that got me interested in reading the CSP. And so I started reading it.

I'm like, yeah, this is pretty good. You know, like it says it's a little bit it smooths out the translation a little bit, makes a little bit easier to read. But it retains the same kind of sense of what the text is saying.

So, yeah, and we always suggest to someone, at least I do, if they're new to Christianity and they're not quite sure, you don't have to you know, you don't have to be married to a single text. You can know you can listen and read to multiple Bible versions and you're going to get the same sense. Of course, granted, like you said, some versions are probably a little bit too interpretational, but for the majority of translations out there, you're going to get the same sense.

And so if you read one version and you're like, it doesn't make sense, maybe try another version and see if that helps. Yeah, the net translation is worth mentioning, not necessarily because of the trend. I'm not a huge fan of the translation itself because it's really paragraphy.

It's really, really dynamic. That's the word they use, but it has probably the most intense set of notes that you could ever ask for in a single Bible volume. It goes into some of the details about textual criticism.

Sometimes it'll give you reasons why certain readings are selected over others. And then there's sometimes some interpretational notes and some Greek grammar, nerdy stuff if you're into that. But yeah, I use the net Bible specifically for the notes.

So when I'm preparing sermons, I'll have that open to the passage we're going over and I'll be checking them all out. It's certainly worth noting, but the full notes edition. Don't get the one without the notes. You need the notes. Yeah, I check out the, and it's free on the website too. Dr. Daniel Wallace was involved in that translation and he recommends that obviously because he poured his heart and soul into it.

So yeah, the notes, the notes are incredible. You know, like I watch James White's dividing line a lot and he'll reference the passage and I'll be like, Oh, let's go check that out. And the net Bible, see what it says there.

And yeah, it'll, it'll certainly talk about all these important variants and variants are important to talk about. I think because even just today we were reading from Psalm 145, that was our reading for today. And there's a single line in there that is included in the ESV, but in brackets because I think it said it was included in the Septuagint and an early Hebrew manuscript, but not in the rest, but it wasn't in my new American standard Bible. It wasn't, isn't her ESV in brackets.

And so we've, we've been talking to the majority of our discussion has been specifically New Testament textual variants, but there's also another topic that's Old Testament textual variants, which we've kind of haven't talked about. That's that would be a whole nother program. Yeah. Yeah. And it's, it's not my wheelhouse either.

Right? Like I've spent most of my time learning Greek and I spend most of my time in the New Testament. I mean, don't get me wrong. I read the Old Testament.

Don't be like Andy Stanley. Do not do not unhinge your Old Testament. Okay.

I do all of my Old Testament reading in English because I, my Hebrew is nowhere near where my Greek is. So that, that's why I tend to focus on New Testament stuff on my channel and why we're probably focusing on it here. So, yeah, for sure.

Yeah, definitely. And you're, it's great to hear from your experience on what you've learned in it. I think that's, like you said, it's an awesome way to share what you've learned because it helps everybody else that watched your channel learn what you've been learning.

So it's pretty cool. And we can, I can definitely tell when I watch your videos that it's something invested in and you love. So it's your channel's been growing and it's, that's great to see.

So I'm happy for you. We'll definitely send links to our, for our listeners to go check it out. So we've kind of already talked about a lot of the other questions that I proposed to you earlier, but just to mention it. The reason why we talk about this on this program that I was interested to talk to you about is because, like Paul's mentioned earlier, LDS kind of, they have a love of the Bible, but they also have kind of a distrust of it. You know, like there, there's a little bit of hesitancy to read something like, well, you know, if it doesn't immediately line up with their beliefs, sometimes they'll be willing to say, well, maybe I don't understand it, or maybe that was corrupted.

Like in their, their, their basic 13 articles of faith is kind of what they point to is it's kind of like their creed, you know, they don't like the other creeds, but it's kind of like a creed because it's a statement of what they believe. And in that, in that statement, they say, we believe that the Bible to be the word of God, as far as it is translated correctly. And so members take that to mean different things like, you know, it really, they kind of misunderstand that to mean that as long as the Bible's transmitted correctly, you know, if the text was copied correctly throughout time. So they kind of get translation and transmission mixed up.

And so we talked, we talked about that on some of our episodes. So we've talked about how there's textual variants, you know, so there, there are issues in terms of how copyists have copied things. And most of the, most of those problems, like we mentioned, they're not an issue. And then there's also the issue of translation.

So once you have a textual basis for what you're going to translate into English, you translate from that in the original language into your target language. And then, so there's accuracy there that you have to worry about. But, so to kind of sum all that up, is there anything that you think that we need to worry about? You know, like do, do Christians or Latter-day Saints need to look at their Bible and say, I can't trust you, you know, you know, I don't know, I can't even know if this is what Jesus actually said, or can we trust it? So it's kind of just like, you know, wrapping everything we've all said about this discussion and kind of just bundling it up in a package.

Yeah. So the, the reality is, and I'll use these two as, as an example, because textually speaking, they're the two furthest from each other. So the Texas Receptus is a Greek New Testament that we've had since the 1500s. And then in 1881, the Westcott and Hort text came out and said, nah, we don't like the Byzantine text. We're just going to, you know, it's going to be an Alexandrian text. So Westcott and Hort put together a Greek New Testament, and that's kind of like the, the basis of, of our modern English translation.

So lots to say about that. But what I wanted to say is that if you take the Westcott and Hort text and you take the Texas Receptus and you compare the two, you would be hard pressed to say that they were different books. I mean, our Trinitarian passages, like John 1-1, in the beginning was the Word, and the Word is with God, and the Word was God. There's like hardly any textual variants and things like that. These major cardinal doctrines of the Christian faith, you know, monotheism, I know that's a big one, especially for Mormons, right? Shema Yisra'el, Adonai Ahad, Hero Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one, you know, that there's no question about these items. I mean, these are foundational, and there's just no variants that cast any doubt on any of these major things. And even, even minor doctrines, there might be a few here or there that, you know, have us kind of wrestle with the text a little bit, and I don't see an issue with having to wrestle with the text a little bit, right? It forces you to get on your knees, it forces you to pray, it forces you to ask the Father, you know, like this is good stuff. So, the kind of variants that you're actually going to see in the manuscript tradition just isn't that big of a deal, and if you pull any of your typical evangelical Bibles off the shelf, you're not going to be led astray, you're not going to be becoming a Buddhist or anything like that, right?

Yeah, that's a great point. The passage that you mentioned, man, I feel dumb. I think it's in Acts 8 or 10, like you said, there's the passage where it's asked to, you know, to be baptized.

And he says, you know, so what prohibits me from being baptized, you know, if you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, you know, you'll be saved. That's the Ethiopian eunuch, right? That's why I said Ethiopian eunuch, because I can't remember exactly what it is either. But yeah, that's where he reads them the scroll of Isaiah. I can't remember that. I think it's either Acts 8 or Acts 6, something like that. Yeah, it's Acts 8.

We're making it harder for the editor. No, it's all good. Yeah, Acts 8 starts in verse 36.

That's it, yeah, 836, yeah. And then, yeah, so if you look at the note there, yeah, it says, and Philip said, if you believe with all your heart, you may be baptized. The eunuch replied, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. And so that's from the Breen Study Bible. So that's the verse that's not included in most critical texts today. But if you go into the book of Romans, it tells you if you confess with your mouth and believe with your heart and repentance, right? So it's not, yeah, I mean, that passage was, you know, is questionable, which is one of very, very few, by the way. What it teaches is taught in many, many other places in Scripture. Like, there's redundancy all over the place.

It's not going to be an issue. Yeah, I use that as an example of, it's interesting because to me, or at least from what I've read, a lot of people use that verse in favor of believer's baptism versus infant baptism. Right. But you've had Pastor Doug Wilson on your program. And also, I'm friends with a pastor of a Presbyterian church in Utah named James Wallace, Jason Wallace, sorry, Jason Wallace. And he preached that passage when I was there that Sunday. I'd been visiting home in Utah and he preached from that passage. And he kind of made a joke about their, you know, we've got a, you know, I'm not going to get into baptism right now.

You know, I kind of made a joke because I was there. You knew I was a Baptist. Right. But so in that case, you know, you would think, oh, well, that's a case for believer's baptism.

They wouldn't want to preach it because they believe in infant baptism. Right. Right. So, you know, you can say all these variants really affect your view on baptism or other issues significantly. But I don't know, in my experience, not really. You know, it doesn't really affect anything significantly.

No, no, no. It's like baptism is just one of those things. If the verse was there or not, it would still be an argument today.

Right. Because the foundation of the discussion between pedo baptism and credo baptism is one, depending on how you view the covenants and how you view God's promises through, you know, the Israelite nation versus how you view God's promise to the church. It's a much broader level. It's a bigger discussion than just a verse here or there.

So if that passage wasn't there or if it was really doesn't make a huge difference, a difference to the overall discussion of baptism. Yeah, exactly. Maybe I'm thinking back in the back of my brain to all the episodes I watched with James White. I think he calls it a hapax legomenon. Is that the word? Yeah.

So hapax legomenon. That just means that that's a label we give to a Greek word that appears only once in the New Testament. Okay. Specifically a word, not reference to a verse, right?

No, no, no, no. But at the same time, if there is a single verse that's in question, you know, and you're basing an entire theology around that verse and we run into that with Latter-day Saints because they base the baptism and proxy for the dead on that one passage in 1 Corinthians 15. That's kind of a dangerous idea to base an entire theological system around a text that's not very clear. That's right. And that's what I mean by the texts in the Bible are redundant.

A teaching is not just going to be in one single spot, the scriptures. Right. So, yeah. So if we're basing our theology off a single passage, right, then, I mean, there's more to a problem than just a simple variant. There's issues with our theology if we're doing that or with our methodology if we're doing that. Right.

Yeah. Another big passage, it's not a large passage, but it's called the comma Johannium in 1 John 5, 7 through 8. That's another big famous textual variant. And I've talked to Latter-day Saints personally that said, well, the Trinity was invented because of that verse. And now we found that that's not original. So, you know, the Trinity was just an invention based on that one verse.

And it's like, well, no, because, I mean, I'm a Trinitarian and my Bible doesn't have that verse. Right. So, yeah. I mean, what do you do with Colossians and Philippians and John and you know what I mean?

Like, the list goes on and on and on. Again, the Trinity is a doctrine that is all throughout the scriptures and doesn't just rely on, you know, 1 John 5, 7 and 8. So, yeah. And not only that, but most people don't recognize that there is actually early attestation to the comma Johannium. I think it was Jerome had talked about it and had listed reasons. I can't remember whether he listed reasons for its inclusion or for its exclusion, but they at least knew about it back in the third century. So, that just simply means that the Trinity at least goes as far back as Jerome. So, yeah, there's still a lot of debate today even about these textual variants specifically, which is correct, which is ancient. But at the same time, I think just to take a step back, I think to me, it's always been refreshing.

And I've mentioned this in many podcast episodes. It's refreshing to me to come out of the LDS church and see this kind of debate because sometimes it gets heated. But it shows that Christians have a real love for God and for his word and they want to be faithful to it. And even if we disagree or have some quarrels, you know, we're just trying to do what's pleasing to God and ultimately that's their goal.

And so, it's kind of admirable even if someone's arguments are not the strongest or people do get heated in the conversation. If we didn't care about God's word, we wouldn't debate so much about it. That's right.

That's right. So, to kind of close up our discussion, do you have any kind of message for our Latter-day Saint listeners and specific ones who read the King James Bible? Would you tell them to stop reading the King James Bible?

I mean, of course, I don't think you would, but do you have a message for them specifically that you'd like to leave? Yeah, I would say, you know, don't stop reading your King James Bible. I would just say read it and believe it, honestly.

I don't know all the ins and outs of Mormon doctrine and theology and stuff like that. But, you know, try to conform your life around what you're reading in the Bible as opposed to conforming your life around traditions that you may have grew up around. I am also an advocate of grabbing another translation or two and reading through the Bible in one or two different translations just to, you know, catch a different angle on different verses and things like that.

It's been tremendously helpful in my own studies. And I think those who are coming out of Mormonism might be refreshed a little bit by seeing a few fresh phrases. And of course, I'll push the New King James Version. It reads, again, very similar to the KJV. It has a similar cadence and its language is a little updated. But yeah, keep going, keep reading, keep seeking, keep praying over what you're reading.

That's kind of the big thing. We're not really going to understand anything in the Bible unless the Holy Spirit is truly illuminating it to us. So pray that he does that as you read and you won't be led astray. I promise that you won't be led astray.

That's perfect. Thank you, Dwayne. I really appreciate that. Thank you for coming on the program. We're really glad to have you on.

Paul, did you have any other comments? No, I just want to say thank you. I appreciate it. All right. Also, we want to give you some time to plug anything.

We know you mentioned you're having an interview coming up with Dr. Michael Brown, hopefully when you record it. Right. So, yes. Yes. Hopefully that'll work out. So do you have anything else you want to announce about your channel or anything else? Yes. So we've got a couple of things lined up really quickly.

Preservation of scripture is one of those questions that I've been sort of thinking about here and there. So Dr. Richard Brash is going to come on and he's going to talk to us about preservation. I'm actually going to be meeting with him this week and then however long it takes to edit and get it out right. And then Michael Brown will be coming back on the show. I say back on the show. He hasn't been on, but I spoke with him.

We lost power is awful, but he's charitable. So we're going to record and we're going to talk about Old Testament textual criticism, that thing that I have almost no knowledge about. So those are those are kind of the two big things. And then we'll be wrapping up our Texas Receptus series with Dr. Jeff Riddle. He'll be coming on the channel. So that's that's what's going on on the Dwayne Green channel.

And lots more to look forward to. Thanks again, guys, for bringing me on the The Outer Brightness podcast. I was glad to be able to come on and share some of my knowledge with you guys. Yeah, thank you. Yeah, it's been great.

Yeah. So we'll definitely link to your channel. So everybody go check him out.

Give him a like and subscribe to it. I think I checked today and said you had 777 subscribers. That's that's a good number to have. That's that's a that's a divine number, right? Yeah. I think it went up a couple.

We we forgive me if I'm talking about my channel too much. But I I don't know if anyone has been kind of keeping track of that first century Mark manuscript. It was kind of like a big deal in 2011. There was an announcement made and then six years went by. We finally heard something about it. Anyway, I had Dr. Elijah Hickson to talk about some of the mess that actually happened with that manuscript just released today. So go go check it out. OK, awesome.

And I was listening to it earlier today. It's a good one. That's great. Yeah, well, thank you, Dwayne. So, yeah, thank you, Fireflies, for coming to this episode of The Outer Brightness podcast. So check us out. Check Dwayne out and we hope to see you next time. Thank you. Thank you.
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-11-16 17:22:56 / 2022-11-16 17:48:58 / 26

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