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Revisiting the Passion Translation

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown
The Truth Network Radio
April 5, 2022 4:30 pm

Revisiting the Passion Translation

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown

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April 5, 2022 4:30 pm

The Line of Fire Radio Broadcast for 04/05/22.

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The Line of Fire
Dr. Michael Brown

The following program is recorded content created by the Truth Network. Well, let's talk again about the Passion Translation. Is it a translation? Is it a paraphrase?

Should it be used? It's time for The Line of Fire with your host, biblical scholar and cultural commentator, Dr. Michael Brown. Your voice for moral sanity and spiritual clarity. Call 866-34-TRUTH to get on the line of fire.

And now, here's your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Once again, we are making this a Theology Tuesday. We're focusing on the Word of God. We're focusing on translations of the Bible.

We're talking in particular about the Passion Translation. So any question you have of any kind, phone lines are open. There was an issue yesterday with a phone set up. Because of that, folks were calling and unable to get through.

But that's been resolved. So by all means, calls on all questions are welcome. But in particular, Bible translation-related calls are especially welcome. Or specific questions about the Passion Translation.

866-34-TRUTH, 866-348-7884. Before we get into this, I was looking through some of the comments on YouTube yesterday. I had a few minutes last night and was glancing through them. And someone said, Dr. Brown, you look really tired on the air yesterday. Get some sleep.

But I wasn't aware that I looked tired. Certainly felt good. Feel great right now. So rest it well.

Thriving. But thanks for the concern. Anyway, maybe I need more makeup.

No makeup on here anyway. But in any case, in any case, glad to be with you. Appreciate that we can take this time together. Okay. When I was first asked about the Passion Translation a few years ago on the air, I said there's a lot of good in it. Beauty. Really valuable. Wonderful renderings that I really appreciate.

And others that are too free for me. But in any case, it's a paraphrase, not a translation. Then I got pressed by some callers, you need to look into this more deeply. There are all kinds of wild claims from the translator, Brian Simmons. He's misrepresenting his credentials.

And it's really dangerous, et cetera. So I dug in deeper. Brian and I knew each other, not close friends, but I preached at his church years back when he was pastoring in Connecticut. Spent time with him and his wife, Candy, and found them to be real lovers of the Word of God, very devoted to the Word. And they would just talk to me casually about the Bible translation work they did in the Amazon, et cetera. And I hadn't watched any of the interviews where he talked about the translation or how it came about or any special inspiration that he felt he was given by God to do the translation.

But I did dig into things more deeply. And in digging in more deeply, my big concern became that people are looking at this as a translation, whereas it's a paraphrase. And at times, an expanded paraphrase.

I mean, really going beyond the text to put a certain interpretation on the text, one that Brian believes is reflected in the original languages, which then he'll document in the extensive footnotes. But most people are just reading the translation. And when I saw that people were using this as their primary Bible, that's when I was shouting for the rooftops. No, no. Don't use any paraphrase as your primary Bible.

Ever, ever, ever. You know, the message Eugene Peterson, sometimes when doing serious academic work, sometimes while even writing a commentary, I've quoted from the message because the paraphrase, boom, it really hits home well. It's Eugene Peterson taking the words of Scripture and expressing them in his own thoughts.

But from what I've been told, he would never, ever want you to read it as your primary Bible. No, use it in a secondary way as a paraphrase to get an interpretation that is now expressed in a little bit different words as to what Eugene Peterson, or in this case Brian Simmons, feels that the word of God is saying. Now, in terms of the Passion translation, there are places where it is much closer to a traditional translation, that it is not paraphrastic. But then there are others that are very paraphrastic. You could look at the rendering of some of Paul's letters, and it's much closer to the text, and look at the rendering of Song of Solomon, and it's tremendously expansive. In any case, my counsel to Brian as a friend has been declare loudly from the rooftops that it is a paraphrase, not a translation. Encourage people to use it in a secondary way, but not as a primary Bible. And take in the various criticisms from different Bible scholars who love the word of God and are fluent in the original languages, and learn from those, and then go through the whole work and put out a brand-new edition.

Ultimately, I think 2027 is the target date for it to be completed. Put it out like that. That's been my suggestion to Brian. Now, what about Pastor Mike Winger's videos? He hired a team of scholars.

He did not tell them what he was looking for, but just asked them, would you please evaluate this for me as a translation? I know some of the scholars. The ones I know are not anti-charismatic. The ones I know are colleagues and friends of mine. Others I don't know well, but they're respected in their field.

And from everything I can understand, there was no intent that they had coming in to bash, or to attack, or to prejudge. So I've encouraged Brian to go through those videos, learn everything you can from them, to sharpen the work. Bible translation is tremendously difficult. Of the many things that I've been called by God to do over the years, doing a translation of the Bible, I couldn't do it in New Testament, I couldn't come within a million miles of that, but the Old Testament is not something I felt called to do. The translation of Job was one of the most difficult things I ever did in my life, academically. One of the most difficult.

Far more difficult than writing the commentary. So, Team Morgan, we are not taking the same call from Isaiah in Gainesville. He should be on your list. We are not taking his call. He calls every week with the same questions, so I'm not taking that call.

I just caught it on the board here, so save everybody a moment. Okay, so when I was translating Job, writing the commentary on the 42 chapters was easier than the translation. And it's the way I approach it, too, because every word could go this way, it could go this way. Common words, what's the best way to express it? What if the same author uses the same word in the same context repeatedly? Should you always translate it the same way to be consistent?

What if there's a play on words? How well do you render that in English? So, I've translated some of Isaiah, and I just get bogged down, because you want to get it right. It's the Word of God, right?

And you want to convey it accurately. According to everything I know, Brian Simmons loves the Word of God. The activity he said he was involved with in the Amazon, according to everything I know that is accurate, he was involved with what he says he was involved with, and he loves the Word, and he prays over this and takes it very seriously. So, I am not a Brian Simmons basher.

I'm not a Brian Simmons defender. I'm simply speaking based on my knowledge of the man. He loves the Word of God and really wants to convey the force and power of the Word of God to the maximum number of people, and has worked on it painstakingly. But, if it's called a translation that is misleading, it is not. There are parts that are more or less translation, but the fact of the matter is, it is primarily a paraphrase, and in some places an expanded paraphrase. Mike Winger has told me, and Mike's a colleague as well, we've met face-to-face maybe once, talked by phone a few times, exchanged texts and messages, but Mike said if it was called a paraphrase out of the gate, he never, ever would have put out a video, critiqued it, called in other scholars. And the moment Brian would say it's a paraphrase, then the controversy would end for Mike. He'd be very happy if it said expanded paraphrase, but if it just said paraphrase, that's it. Controversy ends.

So that's the big issue there. Alright, let me give you some examples. I'm going to read from Psalm 1, okay? Psalm 1, in the Passion Translation, it says this. What delight comes to those who follow God's ways? They won't walk in step with the wicked, nor share the sinner's way, nor be found sitting in the scorned seat. Their pleasure and passion is remaining true to the word of I Am, meditating day and night in his true revelation of light. They will be standing firm like a flourishing tree planted by God's design, deeply rooted by the brooks of bliss, bearing fruit in every season of their lives. They are never dry, never fainting, ever blessed, ever prosperous. But how different are the wicked? All they are is dust in the wind, driven away to destruction. The wicked will not endure the day of judgment, for God will not defend them. Nothing they do will succeed or endure for long, for they have no part with those who walk in truth. But how different it is for the righteous?

The Lord embraces their paths as they move forward, while the way of the wicked lead only to doom. Overall, the scope of what's written there very powerfully gets you the feel of someone. But there are complete additions and complete changing of words along the way.

I've shared this directly with Brian. So if you say it's an expanded paraphrase, no problem. That's what you do, the expanded paraphrase. But here it starts off, the Hebrew, is literally truly happy, or how blessed is the man who doesn't walk in the counsel of the ungodly?

That's where it starts. Well, where do you get this first line, what delight comes to the one who follows God's ways? It's not there. That's an overall summary, an overall summary from Brian about what the psalm is about.

But it's not there. It's a complete addition. If you're calling it a translation, then you just add it to the Word of God. If you're calling it an expanded paraphrase, I still wouldn't recommend that because it's just extra that's not there.

But at least you've called it an expanded paraphrase. Or for example, his passion is to remain true to the Word of I Am. Terat Adonai is not the Word of I Am. It is the teaching or instruction or law of Yahweh. So it's not I Am, and Terah is not word. There are many other Hebrew words for words, several principal ones. But Terah is either teaching, instruction, or law. And then meditating day and night on the true revelation of light, true revelation of light is just extra.

It's just extra. Verse three, we'll tell you what, we'll come back to this, phone lines are open, 866-348-7884. We'll be right back. It's The Line of Fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on The Line of Fire by calling 866-344-TRUTH. Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Thanks friends for joining us on The Line of Fire.

Thanks to Mike Winger in the chat room there on YouTube. He would not have hired scholars and done his passion project, but have probably put out a single video addressing where it is misleading. All clear. Mike, thank you for the further clarification I was trying to represent accurately. But in any case, the issue is calling something a translation. And if you're reading, for example, the Living Bible, the Living Bible was a famous paraphrase from a few decades ago. Basically, taking the King James, as I understand it, Kenneth Taylor involved with that, taking the King James and then paraphrasing it, but then looking at the Hebrew and Greek to sharpen things along the way.

The New Living Translation is a dynamic translation, dynamic being a technical word, that it is more thought for thought than word for word, but done by top biblical scholars. So it is mildly paraphrastic and could be used for someone whose second language is English. Or John Wilkerson with Teen Challenge said that when they were trying to communicate like the parables of Jesus or different messages, what they found was that the NLT really brought it out strongly and clearly, so for popular use. And I've often quoted it in that regard. But if I was choosing a first translation and English was my first language, I still wouldn't use the NLT because it is, as I said, mildly paraphrastic, but a tremendous reference.

And I use it frequently and I quote from it often. Within those Bibles that are straight translations, be it the King James, be it the ESV, be it the NIV, be it the ISV, be it the NET, be it many, many others, there are different philosophies of translation within those. And some will be closer to the biblical text in terms of the language and the order of words, but the expense of not coming out well in English. The NASB, for example, New Testament, is trying to do that more with the New Testament Greek, but it doesn't read as well as the NIV, which is seeking to follow the Hebrew and Greek, but then to polish the English in a certain way that it reads more smoothly. So in Bible translation, you have to decide which way you want to go, because you can't do both fully at the same time. And then a Jewish translation with certain presuppositions about the meaning of words or certain traditional understandings about the meaning of words is going to read differently than a Christian translation, because scholars are going to have different perspectives. That's going to happen, but there's a distinct difference between a translation and a paraphrase, especially a more expansive paraphrase. So just to give you an example, let's say someone doesn't understand, you're quoting to them all of sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. And they say, what does that mean?

You say, well, every one of us has done things that are displeasing in God's sight and that fall short of his high standards. So you just paraphrased the verse, right? It's legitimate. You paraphrased it. But if you want someone to say it's a translation, no, it's not a translation. You paraphrased what the Bible said to get the point across.

Preachers, teachers do this all the time. And I have been enriched by scholars who really know the word well and then do an expanded paraphrase of a book. It's like, ah, in one book there, you know, in a few chapters, I'm getting your full understanding. In other words, you worked for 20 years in a commentary on Romans. And then you put out an expanded paraphrase of Romans, like, okay, God, I know where you're going on each verse.

There's value in it, but it has to be distinguished from a straight translation. All right, 866-34-TRUTH. Let's go over to Trevor in Corona, California. Welcome to the line of fire. Hey, Dr. Michael Brown.

Love your show. So I'm here to comment on the Passion translation. I think that the reason why is his name, Brian. The reason why he feels comfortable calling it a translation is because he's basing his work on what he claims is a revelation from God, that the translation work is coming by an inspiration from God. And he's, you know, it's like, like, you know, God is basically giving me these insights. And so I think that's part of the reason why it goes so strongly. That's a big emphasis that Mike Winger has. And I think that's probably one of the biggest mistakes that Brian is making in regards to the Passion translation.

Got it. So in other words, from your understanding of Brian's thinking, he can call it a translation because the God who inspired the Bible is inspiring his translation work, and therefore even when he is adding and explaining further, it's from the Lord. That would be what you're communicating, right? My paraphrase of what you just said. Right, that's exactly right. That's what I'm communicating.

And then, I mean, the only obvious issue with that is that scholars who have worked on, you know, the original languages for their whole careers, disagree with his, you know, his interpreter, his translation of those texts. And so I think it's a pretty clear example of, I don't know, this is going a little further, you know, but I think this is a pretty clear example of what I would consider a charismatic excess, potentially coming from that, that, that coming from that area. Right.

So here's how I'd look at that. And Trevor, I appreciate you bringing that up. And that's something that, that Mike Winger has communicated to me. It's on his videos, but he's communicated to me privately, having dug in deep, having looked at the claims on the website about the Sebastian translation, having listened to some of Brian Simmons' interviews, that he is claiming a special inspiration.

So I have asked him about this. I didn't watch the show when he was on Sid Roth. Whenever you're doing some of these TV shows that are not live, there's extra content that's recorded, but then not aired. So maybe I make comment A, and I said, let me make sure I explain that, what I meant in comment B, like seeing John the 22nd chapter, you know, and having something like that. Brian then went on to clarify, no, I'm not saying they're extra books of the Bible. I'm saying that there's so much more that could have been, something like that.

But that part didn't air. So he understands how there could be misunderstanding. But then there are other parts where it does seem that Brian has indicated that the Lord showed him a certain translation insight. For example, about Hebrew homonyms.

So that's a word that's spelled the same way, but can have two different meanings, like the bank of the river or the bank where you go and deposit your money. So we have many Hebrew homonyms. And according to what I understand, again, I don't want to misrepresent, but according to what I understand, that he said the Lord told him to really look at that, because you have these double meanings in the text. Now, there's something called Janus parallelism. And that is that the writer intentionally has a double entendre. That, for example, in Song of Solomon, it says, eight Zamir has come. Well, Zamir could mean singing, or it could mean pruning. And sometimes, like the verse before would suggest singing, and the verse after pruning, or something like that. That's so-called Janus parallelism. So there are rare times when an author will do that. But that's not the case in 99.999% of homonyms. So one thing I brought out to Brian was Psalm 23, one.

Adonai huoi lo echsar. So in Psalm 23, well-known, the imagery through the entire psalm, shepherd imagery, shepherd imagery, separate imagery, right? You know, in the valley, sheif tekhalamish antecha hemi anachamune, they're rod and your staff, they comfort me, and all of this. So it's shepherd imagery throughout.

But he says that the Lord is my shepherd and my best friend. And then it's based on the Hebrew root involved. In one root, so it's a homonym, has to do with shepherding, feeding, tending. The other root has to do with friendship, companionship. They're two different words.

And in fact, they would have been vocalized differently. So it does not say anything about friend, zero. Yes, is the Lord supposed to be our best friend? Absolutely.

But the Hebrew doesn't say that. So that would be the challenge back then. Let me just say this last thing in fairness. I've felt God stir me to write books, you know, or felt special grace in writing a commentary like, wow, I really believe I have an insight there. But then you put it forward for scrutiny. You know, when I wrote Jezebel's War with America, I wrote 70, 80 percent of the core in like six days. And I couldn't stop writing. I was up.

I'd be ready to go to sleep. It's two thirty in the morning. Now I got to write some more. I write till four. And it was literally, I felt like fire in my head.

Just writing, writing. Well, then I see some critic attacking me for saying that I'm claiming inspiration like the Book of Mormon. No, I just was gripped as I was writing, just like you might be preaching. I said, man, I'm gripped.

But then everything's tested. I wasn't claiming special revelation. I just felt, wow, God was really with me. So I could easily say, I really felt the Lord with me as I was translating. I felt this grace. Okay, fine.

Now examine everything by the Hebrew or the Greek. Fair enough that you felt special. When I did Job, I did not feel that. I felt like I was climbing a mountain, walking in the mud.

It was very difficult. But times of writing the commentary, I felt special grace on me. So if that's all someone's saying, I really felt the Lord with me in this project.

Wonderful. Now everything is tested by the original languages, by the Hebrew and the Greek, et cetera. So, yeah, to the extent if I'm a charismatic preacher, if I'm a translator, that I am claiming special divine authority backing my words, well, you better test all of that by scripture. What I'm claiming to say, if it doesn't line up with scripture, then I'm self-deceived. If I thought the Lord moved on me supernaturally to tell you that the thunderstorm that's supposed to come is not coming tonight, so go ahead and make your plans to be outside, and the thunderstorm comes, I better take account for that.

And if I say the Lord showed me that this Hebrew word means this and it doesn't, I better take account for that. Absolutely. Hey, thank you sir for the call. And again, that's a big issue that Pastor Mike Winger has raised along the way. 866-34-TRUTH. Okay, I'm going to come back to the phones on the other side of the break. I'm going to get to other calls on other unrelated subjects a little later in the broadcast.

First and foremost, if you have a Bible translation question, even about a specific verse or Hebrew or Greek, or anywhere about the passion translation, by all means give us a call. 866-34-TRUTH. We'll be right back. It's the line of fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on the line of fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.

Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. All right, we've just got nine days until National Not Ashamed of Jesus Day. Go there to the website, notashamedofjesus.org. The more the world tries to silence us, the more the world tries to cancel us, the more that we will stand up in a united front and say, we love Jesus, we love you, we're here, and we're not ashamed.

So please share this as widely as you can. I believe this is going to be a powerful day to initiate new Gospel evangelism, to help people who have been kind of on the sidelines get more on the front lines, and just a time of encouragement and a time of joint voice sounding across America. All right, notashamedofjesus.org.

Remember to go there and to call in 866-34-TRUTH. Okay, Luke 11 and Matthew 6, those are the two places where the Lord's Prayer is found, all right? So Luke 11, for those watching, we're going to put it up in the NIV, and as you're looking at it, and then most of you have memorized the Lord's Prayer, if you've said it in church, you're familiar with it, right? Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. So let's see that now in Luke 11.

So those watching, you'll actually see it in the NIV, Luke 11. I'm going to read it to you from the Passion Translation, verse 2. Jesus taught his disciples, taught them this prayer. Our Heavenly Father, may the glory of your name be the center on which our life turns.

So that's where it starts. Now, that's a beautiful concept of God's name being holy, that his name, his reputation, his glory and honor becomes the center of our lives, but that is a very free interpretation of it, and covers some of what that is about, but does not nearly exhaust what it is about for God's name to be hallowed and holy, sanctified. It means people, reverence and honor his name, not just us, but the whole world.

May your Holy Spirit come upon us and cleanse us. Where did that come from? That's not there.

It's not there. How can anyone say this is not an expanded paraphrase? How can anyone say it's a translation? And then what if someone uses this as their primary Bible and they're now quoting that? No, Jesus didn't say that.

He didn't say that. Manifest your kingdom on earth, okay, and give us our kneaded bread for the coming day. So scholars debate our daily bread, does that mean for today, for the coming day? So that's perfectly legit.

That's where he lands. Forgive our sins as we ourselves release forgiveness to those who have wronged us, and rescue us every time we face tribulations. Okay, so paraphrase and the concept of forgiveness goes along with the concept of a release of a debt, so he combines that by saying release forgiveness. Again, I appreciate the thought behind it, the prayerfulness behind it, the conveying of different things that are in the Greek and bringing them out, and then with each one there's a footnote explaining it.

So I'm looking at, let's just see, okay, just trying to find this here. All right, just looking to see how some of this is justified in the footnotes. Yeah, so translated from some of the earliest Greek manuscripts. In any case, everything that is there, Brian will painstakingly explain in footnotes, but certain things are there that are not there, that are further explanation or further interpretation or citing from a manuscript tradition that is not followed by other scholars. So again, it's painstakingly documented.

It's done by someone who really does love and reverence the word and is on his knees and is praying and is wrestling with the meaning of words and all of that. I appreciate that. I do. And I'd love to see that there are renderings and passion I think are wonderful.

Yeah, boom, powerful. However, it's a paraphrase in many places, an expanded paraphrase, and there should be extensive revisions done. Hey, I would be honored if I was working on a Bible translation and other scholars took the time to critique what I had done. I'd be honored by it.

I'd probably be bothered, like, no, that's really nice. I can criticize it. But once I got over the fleshly response, they're talking about me, not Brian. Once I got over the fleshly response, then I'd appreciate it. Okay, good. We'll make it sharper.

And we'll keep making it sharper. If the King James translators were alive today, they would not be using the King James Bible. They would not.

There is absolutely no way under the sun they'd be using it. You read the preface to the King James translation. They wanted a Bible in the language of the people for the day. They'd be probably working on the tenth revision now. So even teams of Bible scholars that take years and years to pad out a Bible translation then are subsequently revising it and sharpening it. So when one person undertakes a translation of the whole Bible, that's massive.

In this case, a paraphrase of the whole Bible. All right, let us go over to James in Starbridge, Georgia. You're on the line of fire. Thanks for calling. Hello, Dr. Brown. How are you doing?

Doing well, thank you. Things are going here. Stockbridge, by the way. Stockbridge, all right. Well, we're close. Yeah, that's close.

It's in the ballpark. First I have a comment, and then a question. Sure. The comment is, I've met Brian. I was involved with IHOP.

I was a leader of a house of prayer for over 13 years. So I know Brian and his writings. I mean, I don't know Brian well.

We've never went to dinner or anything. But we have a spoke and Mike Bickel recommended Brian's commentary on the Song of Solomon to me. And so that's what introduced me to him. And then Brian was in the bookstore in IHOP one time, and we talked for a little while.

And just sort of a sort of down the line defense a little bit. Brian really is into the bridal paradigm, which I'm sure you're familiar with. And therefore he wanted to write everything that falls under that umbrella. And that's where a lot of people miss what he's trying to do in his paraphrastic translation. He's trying to put forth the intimacy, make everything fall into that umbrella.

Right, right. So for those who aren't familiar, rabbis over the centuries read Song of Solomon as a love song between God and Israel. Many of the church interpreters have read it as a love song between Jesus and the church. And then other scholars have said it's Solomon or someone else and his lover, his bride, and it's just a beautiful love song and shows the beauty of marriage, etc.

But you have these different interpretive ideas. But what you're saying in Brian Simmons' mind is not just Song of Songs, but the whole Bible is like a love song from God to his people and therefore should be read and interpreted. So all the more, and I'm sure he's communicated that in his notes, but all the more do you say, hey, this is an expanded paraphrase where I'm seeking to bring this out and adding extra words and extra sentences to convey that. So again, that's the key thing to communicate that's so important, that based on my understanding of the whole Bible is about this, therefore I am doing this paraphrase to bring that out and enhance it. So you'll find the Song of Solomon is far more paraphrastic than, say, the rendering of one of Paul's letters or some of the other Old Testament books because of the nature of it. And that's what's taken some of the most criticism is something like that.

It's like, how can you call this a translation when the whole thing is addition from beginning to end? Anyway, I appreciate you raising that and it does help clarify further the nature of the work and Brian's heart in doing it. So your question, go ahead sir.

I've recently finished my doctorate and you're one of the ones that encouraged me to do that, just with your scholarship. I just read a two volume book by S. Douglas Woodard called Rebooting the Bible, where he argues for huge tomes, and where he argues for at least equality if not primacy of the Septuagint over the MT, with his argument being that the Septuagint is older than our present Hebrew text that we have with the Masoretics, and that he documents how many times that the Masoretics in later times post New Testament times. Literally intentionally, according to his thesis, rewrote scripture, changed things they knew didn't say one thing to say another as an argument against the success of early Christianity using the Hebrew text to support Jesus as Messiah. And they were losing the battle because the church was going Gentile-wise and a lot of the Jews were, I won't use convert, but they were following that pathway into believing Jesus as Messiah, that's what all that entailed.

And if they were concerned about it, and so they... Let me ask you just a quick question to start. First congratulations on the doctorate and getting through these volumes. I've not looked at them. Of course, he's swimming up Mount Everest, you know, to give this argument, and to try to argue for a Septuagint supremacy of the entire Hebrew canon, their Old Testament, massively swimming up Mount Everest there. But what does he say are the earliest manuscript copies that we have of the Septuagint? Actual copies of Greek manuscripts of the Septuagint?

He admits that they're not as... he would like to see more. He said, we've lost a lot, but what we do have, his argument is that the Septuagint was based on Hebrew text. Right, right, no, but just simple thing to clarify this for everybody. What does he say are the earliest Septuagint Greek manuscripts that we actually have?

How old are they? Pre, I think, 200? No. See, the first thing is to say that the Septuagint dates back before Hebrew.

No, of course not. I mean, we all know, and he agrees, that the Septuagint is translating Hebrew. He's saying it's translating a different Hebrew text than what became known as the Masorek textual tradition. However, the oldest examples that we have of Masorek textual tradition date back in physical writing to the Dead Sea Scrolls before the time of Jesus, whereas the earliest Septuagint manuscripts that we have basically are after the time of Jesus.

Now, we do have some other ancient Hebrew traditions that have been preserved, but the problem is, on every level, on every level, and I'll come back to this on the other side of the break, on every level the Septuagint demonstrates that it is a translation from Hebrew, and many times you can see where it got things wrong or the prescribal areas based on deviating from the Masoretic text. Masoretic text must be the overall starting point, by and large. We'll be right back. It's the Line of Fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on the Line of Fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.

Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Thanks, friends, for joining us on the Line of Fire. Okay, phone line's jammed.

I want to get to as many calls as I can. So just closing words, James, about this. I just clicked on Amazon to find out more about this book, Rebooting the Bible, and about S. Douglas Woodward, who wrote it, these two major volumes.

Doug Woodward is a high-tech executive with over 40 years experience as a management consultant, financial advisor to startup and emerging companies. He just is a nationally recognized speaker at Christian Bible prophecy symposium, has authored 15 books addressing Christian theology and eschatology. In other words, he's not a biblical scholar. He's not a textual scholar. That's why I say he's swimming up Mount Everest.

It's not going to work. There's a mountain of evidence against it. Even the blurb, Rebooting the Bible Part 2, shows how the original timeline of the Greek Septuagint translated from a Hebrew text 400 years older than that used in the Masoretic text dramatically revises the traditional stories of Eden, Adam, etc.

So when you start claiming all that, you'd be 99.99% sure you have to throw out the overall thesis. Even the idea of the Hebrew text being 400 years older than the Masoretic text was traditionally, we know when the Septuagint was translated. We know in many, many different ways. Different hands beginning in the third into the second century BC, okay? We know that in many, many different ways. That's the first thing. Second thing, we know that you have the Masoretic textual tradition represented already in pre-Christian times in the Dead Sea Scrolls.

So to say it's a tradition 400 years earlier than that then pushes you back to 500 BC, which is 200 years before the Septuagint, 2,300 years before it was even done. And again, there are your ascribal areas. For example, one called homeotoluten, where you're writing, you look up, and then you look back and you keep writing. But what happened is your eye fell on a the same word two lines below. If you've ever copied something, it happens easily. And when you go back and look at the original, it's like, ah, ah, here's where the ascribal area took place. So we can even understand some of the ascribal areas in the Septuagint based on the Masoretic textual tradition. Now here and there, there are deviations. And the Dead Sea Scrolls indicate that there were different Hebrew textual traditions then on some level, some deviation. But that which was copied the most meticulously and passed on the most carefully is the Masoretic textual tradition.

Now within that, could there be vocalizations that were anti-Christian or ordering of books or things that, you know, there are arguments about that, well, the order is the same from manuscript to manuscript and the chapter is the same order. Then in any case, I know you went through working on this, but I would put a massive, massively giant question mark next to these theses, followed by 10 exclamation points. Hey, thank you for the call. And Mr. Woodward, if you're listening and feel I've been unfair or someone sends you a link, I'd be unlikely you just happen to be listening. If someone sends you this link, then let's talk about it on the air.

Seriously, not in a mocking way, not to set you up, but let's have a serious discussion about it. All right, let us go to Adam in Winchester, New York. Thanks for joining us on the Line of Fire. Hey, good afternoon, Dr. Brown. God bless you, your family, all of everybody down in North Carolina.

Ask Dr. Brown. In New York, God bless the whole world. Why not? Westchester, New York. Westchester, all right.

Yeah, we're getting close on these names, I'm just reading them off the board here. Go ahead. No problem. A couple of things. First, I am Jewish, so when I first started going to church in 2012, my pastor introduced me to you, knowing I was going to overwhelm him with all of my questions. And I sourced eight sermons from one of your websites, All Israel Shall Be Saved, The Baptism of Tears for Israel is Jesus, the Jewish Messiah, and five others. I'd like to know where I could find them now, so I could point others to them. Also, are there any videos for these sermons, or are they only available in audio? Yeah, go ahead. The second thing is, and let you address this, with respect to Bible verses, with respect to a king over Israel, can you please reconcile Deuteronomy 1714 and 1 Samuel 8? Yes, sir.

I'm using TLZ. In fact, I'm just going to jump into it to explain that to everyone, just for time's sake. And thank you, sir, for the call and the kind words. And your pastor makes real wisdom there, dealing with a new Jewish believer.

Glad to have you as part of the family. So that series of messages and teachings should be available if you go to askdrbrown.org, askdrbrown.org, askdrbrown.org, click on Store, and then Audio. So askdrbrown.org, askdrbrown.org, Store, and then Audio.

And I think it's Stand with Israel. I think that's the MP3 series. As to videos existing, I only know of audio. Those are old messages.

Those go back into probably the early 90s. Baptism of Tears for Israel was 1991 in Kansas City, if I recall, and I remember it for many dramatic reasons. Extraordinary story, very intense day, very painful day, a day of great burden before the Lord. But askdrbrown.org, Store, click on Audio. But make sure you go to realmessiah.com, Adam, realmessiah.com.

We have tons of teachings on video, on audio, in writing, debates with rabbis, an absolute treasure trove for someone like you. As for Deuteronomy 17, which legislates God giving a king to Israel, versus 1 Samuel 8, where Samuel is warning the people and God's saying, hey, they don't want me as king. They want their own king.

They're rejecting me. Well, why would God on the one hand say, okay, okay, setting up a king, and here's how you do it, and make sure they do X, Y, Z to avoid abuses, and another, God's saying, no, I'm the king of Israel. Why do they want a king? Critics would say, critical scholars would say, that proves Deuteronomy is written after 1 Samuel and reflects later developments. That's the critical view. The biblically based view that would take the text as stated, chronologically stated, is that Deuteronomy was giving us pragmatic laws, just like Deuteronomy 24 gives us divorce laws, and Jesus tells us in Matthew 19, that was because of the hardness of heart. It was never God's ideal, never God's ideal, but it was because of the hardness of heart of the human beings. That's why God gave a divorce law. So God pragmatically, knowing this is going to happen, and knowing that he's going to raise up ultimately a David and the Messiah through this line, says, okay, here's how you deal with it, but it was not based on the perfect ideal where you wouldn't need an earthly king and just have God as your king.

It was based on Israel's sin and Israel's earthly desires, so God's going to do something redemptive through it, and Deuteronomy 17 is just being pragmatic. Hey, thank you, sir, for the questions and the blessings. Let's go over to Chris in Gainesville, Georgia. Thanks for holding through the whole show. Welcome to the line of fire.

Absolutely. Thank you, sir, for taking my call. I just had a quick question.

I'll just put it out there to get it for time's sake. I work at a large facility, the health care facility, and although it's not publicly Christian in the name, the CEO and the president, when they give a public speech, they'll start with prayer, etc., and so anyway, they have a small chapel built on site, and it has a large cross, like a small altar to pray on, and you know, there's depictions of Jesus in the stained glass and statues, small statues of Jesus. Anyway, I go in there, I'll have my lunch break and pray and meditate, and today I was in there, and I'm presuming that the person was a Muslim. She came in in a classic kind of garb with the head wrapping, and she walked in and she unfolded a large prayer mat, angled it, and began to do, like, a kind of a, I'm assuming her afternoon prayers, kind of a ritualistic bowing, getting up, bowing, getting up, and I was just filled with a bunch of different emotion. I felt a little disrespected, I felt a little bit of anger, then I started feeling kind of pity, and I just wanted to know how you would, how I thought maybe should I kind of huff and puff and leave, or instead I just stretched my hands out and prayed over her that she would find the one true God.

What's your take on that? Okay, well, I love what you did in terms of your response in the midst of that, was to just pray over her in Jesus' name, and the more loudly and clearly you do it in Jesus' name, Jesus, the Son of God, etc., you know, the more that would be contrary to her beliefs. But I would think that since it is set apart in that way, that you would want to have rules saying it's not appropriate to come in and offer Islamic prayers here, because there's a fundamental denial of God's triunity, a fundamental rejection of Jesus as the Son of God, the things that we believe would be considered heretical in Islam, and you could ask her politely, so if I went into a mosque and got on my knees and said, Jesus, I worship you, Lord God, I praise you, Son of God, I love you, would that be acceptable? And obviously it's not going to be acceptable in a mosque because it would be considered blasphemy to do that. So, you know, you could say, hey, if you need a place, then there's a room that, you know, the private room somewhere where someone can go, you know, you try to be accommodating and gracious, but, you know, you say, hey, this is set apart for the gospel and this is about Jesus. And then, you know, if it became some problem where the person wanted to be confrontational or claimed they had a right to do X, Y, Z, you know, I would say, well, let's put on Christian praise and worship music, you know, that's always going to be on and it's not allowed to turn it off. You know, I would do my best to be gracious to someone and welcoming, et cetera, but when you're going to cross a certain line and do things in a religion that calls our faith ultimately blasphemous and things cherished to us blasphemous and heretical, then it is out of place for her to be doing that. By the way, I thought you might have had an Islamic question. If issues come up specifically in conversation, answering-islam.org, answering-islam.org. It's got a ton of info there, lots of detail. May the Lord use you to bring this woman to a knowledge of Jesus. God bless. Back with you, friends, tomorrow. Another program powered by the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-11 09:46:52 / 2023-05-11 10:05:23 / 19

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