"A text therefore you have, that has now by everyone been received [i.e. accepted, admitted]" (emphasis added): the words from the Elzevier 1633 edition, in Latin, from which the term "Textus Receptus" was derived. The image was edited to underline "Textum" and "receptum".

Textus Receptus (Latin: "received text") refers to the succession of printed editions of the Greek New Testament, including Erasmus's Novum Instrumentum omne (1516), the printed editions of Stephanus, Beza, Elzevir and Scrivener among some others.[1][2][3]

The Textus Receptus constituted the translation-base for the original German Luther Bible, the translation of the New Testament into English by William Tyndale, the King James Version, the Spanish Reina-Valera translation, the Czech Bible of Kralice, the Portuguese Almeida Recebida, the Dutch Statenvertaling, the Russian Synodal Bible and most other Reformation-era New Testament translations throughout Western, Northern and Central Europe.

Despite being viewed as an inferior form of the text of the New Testament by modern textual critics, some Conservative Christians still view it as the most authentic text of the New Testament. This view is generally based upon a theological doctrine of the providential preservation of scripture and a rejection of naturalism in constructing the original text of the New Testament.[4]

Textual origin

Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus, the author of the Textus Receptus.
Robert Stephanus

The Textus Receptus most strongly resembles the Byzantine text-type, as Erasmus mainly based his work on manuscripts following the Byzantine text. However Erasmus sometimes followed the Minuscule 1 (part of the proposed Caesarean text-type) in a small number of verses, additionally following the Latin Vulgate translated by Jerome in the 4th century in a few verses, including Acts 9:6 and in placing the doxology of Romans into chapter 16 instead of after chapter 14 as in most Byzantine manuscripts.[5][6][7][8] In the Book of Revelation, Erasmus' text primarily follows the Andreas text-type, named after the Andreas of Caesarea, (563–614) who used it in his widely influential commentary on Revelation.[9] This form of the text of Revelation is related to the Byzantine text-type, but does not perfectly represent it.[10]

Erasmus at the start of his work had around 8 Greek manuscripts, although he used Manuscript 2105 mainly for his separately published textual commentary. The Greek manuscripts used in the creation of the Textus Receptus are the following:[11][5][6][7][12][13]

GA Date Name Text-type Contents
2817 11th century Codex Basilensis A. N. III. 11 Byzantine Pauline Epistles
1 12th century Codex Basiliensis A. N. IV. 2 Caesarean Acts, Epistles, Gospels
2 12th century Codex Basilensis A. N. IV. 1 Byzantine Gospels
2814 12th century Augsburg I.1.4° 1 Andreas Revelation
2815 12th century Codex Basilensis A. N. IV. 4 Byzantine Acts, Epistles
4 13th century Miniscule 4/Codex Regius 84 Mixed/Byzantine Gospels
2816 15th century Codex Basilensis A. N. IV. 5 Byzantine Acts, Epistles
817 15th century Codex Basilensis A. N. III. 15 Byzantine Gospels

Even though Erasmus had only one manuscript of Revelation when he created the Textus Receptus, F.H.A Scrivener notes that in a few places such as Revelation 1:4 and Revelation 8:13, Erasmus refers to manuscripts which he had seen earlier during his travels.[14]

Other manuscripts were available to later editors of the Textus Receptus. Robert Stephanus had access to over a dozen manuscripts, including Codex Bezae and Regius,[8] additionally making use of the Complutensian Polyglot.[15] Stephanus' edition of the Textus Receptus became of the two "standard" texts of the Textus Receptus alongside those of Theodore Beza. Beza additionally had access to Codex Claromontanus and the same Codex Bezae, however he made very little use of them.[16] Although there appears to be a few places where Beza chose to use the Codex Bezae, such as in Matthew 1:23.[17]

Last verses of Revelation

Although sometimes contested by some defenders of the Textus Receptus, It is a commonly accepted fact that because the manuscript which Erasmus used lacked the last six verses of Revelation, he used the Latin Vulgate to backtranslate the last verses of Revelation into Greek. However, he also used the notes of Valla, such as in the reading "Amen. Even so, come Lord Jesus" in Revelation 22:20, which does not completely agree with the Latin Vulgate. In this process, Erasmus created many distinct readings into the text of Revelation. Despite this, some of these readings were later edited by Stephanus in his editions of the Textus Receptus, yet still including some distinct Erasmian readings such as the inclusion of the words "book of life" instead of the words "tree of life" in Revelation 22:19.[18]

Some defenders of the Textus Receptus have argued that Erasmus used other Greek manuscripts for the last six verses of Revelation, including manuscripts such as 2049, 2067 and 296 which contain similar readings to the Textus Receptus. However, scholarship today views these manuscripts as being more likely being influenced by the printed Textus Receptus editions, instead of them being a source for the readings of Erasmus. [18]

Name

The name was first used in the preface of the 1624 edition produced by the Dutch Elzevir brothers.[19]

It is used generally for the text family given in editions derived from Erasmus' Novum Testamentum omne,[20] based on late Byzantine text type manuscripts.

It is also used, in effect, for specific editions that were adopted in different places as the primary exemplar: in Reformed/Calvinist churches (England, Switzerland, Holland, etc.), the Estienne (Stephanus) fourth edition via Beza; elsewhere the Elzevir version.[21]: 394 

History

Erasmus

Main article: Novum Instrumentum omne

The title page of Erasmus' 1516 New Testament from Froben

Erasmus had been working for years making philological notes on scriptural and patristic texts. In 1512, he began his work on the Latin New Testament. He consulted all the Vulgate manuscripts that he could find to create an edition without scribal corruptions and with better Latin. In the earlier phases of the project, he never mentioned a Greek text: "My mind is so excited at the thought of emending Jerome’s text, with notes, that I seem to myself inspired by some god. I have already almost finished emending him by collating a large number of ancient manuscripts, and this I am doing at enormous personal expense."[22]

The last page of the Erasmian New Testament (Rev 22:8–21)

He included the Greek text to defend the superiority of his Latin version over the Vulgate. He wrote, "There remains the New Testament translated by me, with the Greek facing, and notes on it by me."[23] He further demonstrated the reason for the inclusion of the Greek text when defending his work: "But one thing the facts cry out, and it can be clear, as they say, even to a blind man, that often through the translator's clumsiness or inattention the Greek has been wrongly rendered; often the true and genuine reading has been corrupted by ignorant scribes, which we see happen every day, or altered by scribes who are half-taught and half-asleep."[24]

Erasmus's new work was published by Froben of Basel in 1516, becoming the first published Greek New Testament, the Novum Instrumentum omne, diligenter ab Erasmo Rot. Recognitum et Emendatum. For the Greek text, he used manuscripts: 1, 1rK, 2e, 2ap, 4ap, 7, 817.[25] In his research in England and Brabant for annotations on particular words, he had already consulted several other manuscripts and was particularly interested in patristic quotations as evidence of early readings. For subsequent editions he used more manuscripts, and consulted with his vast network of correspondents.

Typographical errors, attributed to the rush to print the first edition, abounded in the published text. Erasmus also lacked a complete copy of the Book of Revelation and translated the last six verses back into Greek from the Latin Vulgate to finish his edition. Erasmus adjusted the text in many places [citation needed] to correspond with readings found in the Vulgate or as quoted in the Church Fathers; consequently, although the Textus Receptus is classified by scholars as a late Byzantine text, it differs in nearly 2,000 readings from the standard form of that text-type, as represented by the "Majority Text" of Hodges and Farstad (Wallace, 1989). The edition was a sell-out commercial success and was reprinted in 1519, with most but not all of the typographical errors corrected.[26]

Erasmus had been studying Greek New Testament manuscripts for many years, in the Netherlands, France, England and Switzerland, noting their many variants, but had only six Greek manuscripts immediately accessible to him in Basel.[25] They all dated from the 12th century or later, and only one came from outside the mainstream Byzantine tradition. Consequently, most modern scholars consider his Greek text to be of dubious quality.[27]

With the third edition of Erasmus's Greek text (1522) the Comma Johanneum was included because "Erasmus chose to avoid any occasion for slander rather than persisting in philological accuracy" even though he remained "convinced that it did not belong to the original text of l John."[28]

Popular demand for Greek New Testaments led to a flurry of further authorized and unauthorized editions in the early sixteenth century, almost all of which were based on Erasmus's work and incorporated his particular readings but typically also making a number of minor changes of their own.[29]

Estienne (Stephanus) and Beza

4th edition of New Testament of Robert Estienne

Main article: Editio Regia

Robert Estienne, known as Stephanus (1503–1559), a printer from Paris, edited the Greek New Testament four times, in 1546, 1549, 1550 and 1551, the last in Geneva. The edition of 1551 contains the Latin translation of Erasmus and the Vulgate. Estienne's version was re-issued with minor revisions of the Greek by Genevan leader Theodore Beza in 1565, 1582, 1588–89, 1598 and 1611.[30]

Elzevir brothers

The origin of the term Textus Receptus comes from the publisher's preface to the 1633 edition produced by Bonaventure and his nephew Abraham Elzevir who were partners in a printing business at Leiden. The preface reads, Textum ergo habes, nunc ab omnibus receptum: in quo nihil immutatum aut corruptum damus ("so you hold the text, now received by all, in which [is] nothing corrupt"). The two words textum and receptum were modified from the accusative to the nominative case to render textus receptus. Over time, that term has been retroactively applied even to Erasmus's editions, as his work served as the basis of the others.[31]

F.H.A Scrivener

F.H.A Scrivener

In 1894, Frederick Henry Ambrose Scrivener produced a significant Greek edition of the Textus Receptus, based on the textual variants that the translators of the King James Version (KJV) had utilized. The translators of the King James Version did not rely on a single edition of the Textus Receptus but instead they incorporated readings from multiple editions of the Textus Receptus, including those by Erasmus, Stephanus, and Beza. Additionally, they consulted the Complutensian Polyglot and the Latin Vulgate itself. This resulted in a Greek text that, while rooted in the tradition of the Textus Receptus, uniquely aligned with the particular readings of the King James Version.[32][33]

Textual criticism

Further information: Textual criticism of the New Testament

John Mill (1645–1707) collated textual variants from 82 Greek manuscripts. In his Novum Testamentum Graecum, cum lectionibus variantibus MSS (Oxford 1707) he reprinted the unchanged text of the Editio Regia, but in the index he enumerated 30,000 textual variants.[34]

Shortly after Mill published his edition, Daniel Whitby (1638–1725) attacked his work by asserting that the text of the New Testament had never been corrupted and thus equated autographs with the Textus Receptus. He considered the 30,000 variants in Mill's edition a danger to Holy Scripture and called for defending the Textus Receptus against these variants.[35]

Johann Albrecht Bengel (1687–1752) edited in 1725 Prodromus Novi Testamenti Graeci Rectè Cautèque Adornandi and in 1734 Novum Testamentum Graecum. Bengel divided manuscripts into families and subfamilies and favoured the principle of lectio difficilior potior ("the more difficult reading is the stronger").

Johann Jakob Wettstein's apparatus was fuller than that of any previous editor. He introduced the practice of indicating the ancient manuscripts by capital Roman letters and the later manuscripts by Arabic numerals. He published in Basel Prolegomena ad Novi Testamenti Graeci (1731).

J. J. Griesbach (1745–1812) combined the principles of Bengel and Wettstein. He enlarged the Apparatus by considering more citations from the Fathers, and various versions, such as the Gothic, the Armenian, and the Philoxenian. Griesbach distinguished a Western, an Alexandrian, and a Byzantine Recension.[36] Christian Frederick Matthaei (1744–1811) was a Griesbach opponent.

Karl Lachmann (1793–1851) was the first who broke with the Textus Receptus. His object was to restore the text to the form in which it had been read in the Ancient Church in about AD 380. He used the oldest known Greek and Latin manuscripts.

Constantin von Tischendorf's Editio Octava Critica Maior was based on Codex Sinaiticus.

Westcott and Hort published The New Testament in the Original Greek in 1881 in which they rejected what they considered to be the dated and inadequate Textus Receptus. Their text is based mainly on Codex Vaticanus in the Gospels.[37]

Defense

Frederick von Nolan, a 19th-century historian and Greek and Latin scholar, spent 28 years attempting to trace the Textus Receptus to apostolic origins. He was an ardent advocate of the supremacy of the Textus Receptus over all other editions of the Greek New Testament, and he argued that the first editors of the printed Greek New Testament intentionally selected those texts because of their superiority and disregarded other texts, which represented other text-types because of their inferiority.

It is not to be conceived that the original editors of the [Greek] New Testament were wholly destitute of plan in selecting those manuscripts, out of which they were to form the text of their printed editions. In the sequel it will appear, that they were not altogether ignorant of two classes of manuscripts; one of which contains the text which we have adopted from them; and the other that text which has been adopted by M. Griesbach.[38]

Regarding Erasmus, Nolan stated:

Nor let it be conceived in disparagement of the great undertaking of Erasmus, that he was merely fortuitously right. Had he barely undertaken to perpetuate the tradition on which he received the sacred text he would have done as much as could be required of him, and more than sufficient to put to shame the puny efforts of those who have vainly labored to improve upon his design. [...] With respect to Manuscripts, it is indisputable that he was acquainted with every variety which is known to us, having distributed them into two principal classes, one of which corresponds with the Complutensian edition, the other with the Vatican manuscript. And he has specified the positive grounds on which he received the one and rejected the other.[39]

John William Burgon

The Textus Receptus was defended by John William Burgon in his The Revision Revised (1881) and also by Edward Miller in A Guide to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament (1886). Burgon supported his arguments with the opinion that the Codex Alexandrinus and Codex Ephraemi were older than the Sinaiticus and the Vaticanus; and also that the Peshitta translation into Syriac (which supports the Byzantine Text) originated in the 2nd century. Miller's arguments in favour of readings in the Textus Receptus were of the same kind.[40] However, both Burgon and Miller believed that although the Textus Receptus was to be preferred to the Alexandrian Text, it still required to be corrected in certain readings against the manuscript tradition of the Byzantine text. In that judgement, they are criticised by Edward F. Hills, who argues that the principle that God provides truth through scriptural revelation also must imply that God must ensure a preserved transmission of the correct revealed text, continuing into the Reformation era of biblical translation and printing. For Hills, the task of biblical scholarship is to identify the particular line of preserved transmission through which God is acting; a line that he sees in the specific succession of manuscript copying, textual correction and printing, which culminated in the Textus Receptus and the King James Bible. Hills argues that the principle of providentially-preserved transmission guarantees that the printed Textus Receptus must be the closest text to the Greek autographs and so he rejects readings in the Byzantine Majority Text where they are not maintained in the Textus Receptus. He goes so far as to conclude that Erasmus must have been providentially guided when he introduced Latin Vulgate readings into his Greek text;[41] and even argues for the authenticity of the Comma Johanneum.[42]

Hence the true text is found not only in the text of the majority of the New Testament manuscripts but more especially in the Textus Receptus and in faithful translations of the Textus Receptus, such as the King James Version. In short, the Textus Receptus represents the God-guided revision of the majority text.[43]

Hills was the first textual critic to defend the Textus Receptus. Although others have defended it per se, they are not acknowledged textual critics (such as Theodore Letis and David Hocking) or their works are not on a scholarly level (such as Terence H. Brown and D. A. Waite[44]).[45]

Providential preservation

Further information: King James Only movement

Those who still advocate the use of the Textus Receptus, often rely upon a theological stance of providential preservation, arguing that a reliance upon naturalism to establish the text of the New Testament is contrary to divine revelation.[4] Thus, they have cited passages such as Psalm 12:6–7, Psalm 119:89, Matthew 5:18, Psalm 117:2, Matthew 24:35 and 1 Peter 1:25[46][47] teach the view that God would miraculously preserve every single true reading of the Bible. This interpretation, however, has been challenged by critics of the Textus Receptus who often assert that these scriptural passages pertain to God's oral communication with humanity rather than the written scriptures or to a more general preservation in the New Testament manuscripts as a whole.[48][47][4]

Relationship to Byzantine text

Codex Vaticanus 354 S (028), an uncial codex with a Byzantine text

The Textus Receptus was mainly established on a basis of manuscripts of the Byzantine text-type, also called 'Majority text', and usually is identified with it by its followers. However, in addition, over many years, Erasmus had extensively annotated New Testament citations in early Fathers, such as Augustine and Ambrose, whose biblical quotations more frequently conformed to the Western text-type; and he drew extensively on these citations (and also on the Vulgate) in support of his choice of Greek readings. The Textus Receptus differs from the Majority Text edition of Robinson and Pierpont in 1,838 Greek readings, of which 1,005 represent "translatable" differences. Most of these variants are minor, however Byzantine manuscripts usually exclude the Comma Johannium and Acts 8:37, which are present in the Textus Receptus. Despite these differences, printed editions based on the Byzantine text agree far more closely with the Textus Receptus than with the critical text, as the Majority Text disagrees with the critical text 6,577 times in contrast to the 1800 times it disagrees with the Textus Receptus. Additionally, multiple of the agreements between the Textus Receptus and the Byzantine text are very significant, such as the reading "God" in 1 Timothy 3:16 and the inclusion of the Story of the Adulteress.[49][50]

F. H. A. Scrivener (1813–1891) remarked that at Matt. 22:28; 23:25; 27:52; 28:3, 4, 19, 20; Mark 7:18, 19, 26; 10:1; 12:22; 15:46; Luke 1:16, 61; 2:43; 9:1, 15; 11:49; John 1:28; 10:8; 13:20, Erasmus followed the readings of Minuscule 1 (Caesarean text-type).[6] Scrivener showed that some texts were incorporated from the Vulgate (for example, Acts 9:6). Daniel B. Wallace enumerated that in 1,838 places (1,005 are translatable) the Textus Receptus differs from the Byzantine text-type.[7]

Minuscule 1rK, Erasmus's only text source for the Book of Revelation, is a manuscript of the Andreas commentary and not a continuous text manuscript. It was not always easy for Erasmus to distinguish this manuscript's commentary text from its biblical source text. The Andreas text is recognised as related to the Byzantine text in Revelation; but most textual critics nevertheless consider it to be a distinct text-type.

Dean Burgon, a great influential supporter of the Textus Receptus, declared that it needs correction.[51] He suggested 150 corrections in its Gospel of Matthew alone.[52]

Matthew 10:8 it has Alexandrian reading νεκροὺς ἐγείρετε (raise the dead) omitted by the Byzantine text.[53][54]
Acts 20:28 it has Alexandrian reading τοῦ Θεοῦ (of God) instead of Byzantine τοῦ Κυρίου καὶ Θεοῦ (of the Lord and God).

Controversial readings

The Textus Receptus contains many well known variants, such as the Comma Johanneum, Confession of the Ethiopian eunuch , the long ending of Mark, the Pericope Adulterae, the reading "God" in 1 Timothy 3:16 and the reading "book of life" in Revelation 22:19.[55]

Comma Johanneum (1 John 5:7)

The Comma Johanneum is a Trinitarian text included in 1 John 5:7 within the Textus Receptus, however the comma is seen as an interpolation by almost all textual critics.[56] The comma is mainly only attested in the Latin manuscripts of the New Testament, being absent from the vast majority of Greek manuscripts of the New Testament, the earliest Greek manuscript being from the 14th century.[57] It is also totally absent in the Ethiopic, Aramaic, Syriac, Georgian, Arabic and from the early pre-12th century Armenian witnesses to the New Testament.[58] And as a result, modern translations as a whole, both Catholic and Protestant, do not include the comma in the main body of the text.[59]

The text (with the comma in italics and enclosed by square brackets) in the King James Bible reads:

7For there are three that beare record [in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.] 8[And there are three that beare witnesse in earth], the Spirit, and the Water, and the Blood, and these three agree in one.

— King James Version (1611)

In the Greek Textus Receptus (TR), the verse reads thus:[60]

ὅτι τρεῖς εἰσιν οἱ μαρτυροῦντες εν τῷ οὐρανῷ, ὁ πατήρ, ὁ λόγος, καὶ τὸ Ἅγιον Πνεῦμα· καὶ οὗτοι οἱ τρεῖς ἕν εἰσι.

The earliest surviving Latin manuscripts containing the comma date back to the 5th to 7th centuries. These include the Freisinger fragment (6th-7th century),[61] León palimpsest (7th century),[62] besides the younger Codex Speculum (5th century).[63] Its first full appearance in Greek is from the Greek version of the Acts of the Lateran Council in 1215.[64] It subsequently appears in the writings of Emmanuel Calecas (died 1410), Joseph Bryennius (1350 – 1431/38) and in the Orthodox Confession of Moglas (1643).[65][66] [67] While there are no comprehensive Patristic Greek references to the comma, F.H.A. Scrivener notes potential allusions to it somewhere around the 5th century in two Greek texts: Synopsis of Holy Scripture and the Disputation with Arius from Pseudo-Athanasius.[68] It is only found in a few later Greek manuscripts: 61 (c. 1520), 629 (14th), 918 (16th century), 2318 (18th century), 2473 (17th century), and in the margins of 88 (11th century with margins added at the 16th century), 177 (BSB Cod. graec. 211), 221 (10th century with margins added at the 15th/16th century), 429 (14th century with margins added at the 16th century), 636 (16th century) and possibly 635 (11th century, added later into the margin).[69]

The Johannine comma gained a stronger position within the Latin tradition, especially in the middle ages, being referenced to by Peter Abelard (12th century), Peter Lombard (12th century), Bernard of Clairvaux (12th century), Thomas Aquinas (13th century) and William of Ockham (14th century) among many others.[69] The first undisputed work to quote the Comma Johanneum as an actual part of the Epistle's text appears to be the 4th century Latin homily Liber Apologeticus, probably written by Priscillian of Ávila (died 385), or his close follower Bishop Instantius.[70] However some have argued that the 3rd-century Church father Cyprian (died 258) knew of the comma earlier, who in Unity of the Church 1.6 may have quoted the Johannine comma: "Again it is written of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, 'And these three are one.'"[71] Nevertheless, other scholars believe that he was giving an allegorical interpretation of the three elements mentioned in the uncontested part of the verse instead of quoting the Johannine comma itself.[72]


Confession of the Ethiopian Eunuch (Acts 8:37)

The Baptism of the Eunuch, Pieter Lastman, 1623

The confession of the Ethiopian eunuch is a variant reading in Acts 8:37, widely seen by Textual Critics to be a later interpolation into the text. It is found in the King James Version due to its existence within the Textus Receptus.[73][74][75][76]

  It reads in the King James Version as thus:[77]

And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.

In the Greek of the Textus Receptus, the verse reads thus:

ειπεν δε ο φιλιππος ει πιστευεις εξ ολης της καρδιας εξεστιν αποκριθεις δε ειπεν πιστευω τον υιον του θεου ειναι τον ιησουν χριστον

Erasmus himself decided to include the verse in his edition of the Greek text due to its presence in the Latin Vulgate of his day and due to being in the margin of Minuscule 2816 (15th century), which he used in his compilation of the Textus Receptus.[78][79][80] The reading is quoted by many western early Christian writers, such as Ireaneus (130 – c. 202), Cyprian (210 – 258), Ambrose (339 – 397) and Augustine (354 – 430). The verse is found in the Codex Glazier (4-5th century), the Harclensis Syriac (7th century), some Old Latin and Vulgate manuscripts alongside some Ethiopian, Georgian and Armenian manuscripts. Nevertheless, the earliest Greek manuscript to contain the verse is Codex Laudianus (550ad)[81][82] and it is not found in 𝔓45 (250ad), 𝔓74 (7th century), Codex Sinaiticus (4th century), Vaticanus (4th century). Alexandrinus (5th century), Ephraemi Rescriptus (5th century), Codex Athous Lavrensis (8th-9th century) and a multitude of other codices and cursives.[83]

Pericope Adulterae (John 7:53-8:11)

The Pericope Adulterae is a passage found in John 7:53-8:11.[84] It is viewed by most New Testament scholars as an interpolation, including Evangelical scholars.[85] The pericope does not occur in the earliest Greek manuscripts discovered in Egypt. The Pericope Adulterae is not in 𝔓66 or in 𝔓75, both of which have been assigned to the late 100s or early 200s, nor in two important manuscripts produced in the early or mid 300s, Sinaiticus and Vaticanus. The first surviving Greek manuscript to contain the pericope is the Latin-Greek diglot Codex Bezae, produced in the 400s. The Codex Bezae is also the earliest surviving Latin manuscript to contain it. Out of 23 Old Latin manuscripts of John 7–8, seventeen contain at least part of the pericope, and represent at least three transmission-streams in which it was included.[86][87][88][89]

Alongside the Old Latin manuscripts, the Pericope Adulterae is found in most Byzantine text-type manuscripts, Palestinian Syriac manuscripts, the Latin Vulgate and some Armenian manuscripts.[90][91] The earliest Greek writing to explicitly reference the passage is the Didascalia Apostolorum (3rd century). The passage is later referenced to in Greek by Didymus the Blind (4th century) alongside the Apostolic Constitutions (4th century), the Synopsis Scripturae Sacrae (6th century) and the 6th century canon tables of the Monastery of Saint Epiphanus.[92][93][94] Due to its presence within most manuscripts within the Byzantine text-type, it is also a charecteristic of Byzantine printed editions of the New Testament such as the texts of Maurice A. Robinson & William G. Pierpont and The Greek New Testament According to the Majority Text (Hodges-Farstad).[95][96]

Bishop J. B. Lightfoot wrote that absence of the passage from the earliest manuscripts, combined with the occurrence of stylistic characteristics atypical of John, together implied that the passage was an interpolation. Nevertheless, he considered the story to be authentic history.[97] Bart D. Ehrman concurs in Misquoting Jesus, adding that the passage contains many words and phrases otherwise alien to John's writing.[98] The evangelical Bible scholar Daniel B. Wallace agrees with Ehrman.[99] However, advocates of the Byzantine priority theory and those who view the Textus Receptus as the most accurate text have attempted to argue for the Johannine authorship of the story.[100] They have argued that there are points of similarity between the pericope's style and the style of the rest of the gospel, saying that anomalies in the transmission of the Pericope Adulterae may be explained by the Lectionary system, where due to the Pericope Adulterae being skipped during the Pentecost lesson, some scribes would relocate or omit the story to not interviene with the flow of the Pentecost lesson.[101][102]

Book of life (Revelation 22:19)

The Textus Receptus in Revelation 22:19 reads "book of life" instead of the Nestle-Aland reading "tree of life", which the Textus Receptus contains on the grounds of the Latin Vulgate (380ad) reading, however it is also attested within the scriptural quotations of Ambrose (339 – 4 April 397) and in some Coptic manuscripts.[103][104] Modern textual critics see the Latin Vulgate reading which found its way into the Textus Receptus as a typo caused by the similarity of the Latin words for book "libro" and tree "ligno".[105][106]

Fellowship (Ephesians 3:9)

The Textus Receptus contains a unique reading "fellowship" (koinonia) instead of "administration" (oikonomia) in Ephesians 3:9.[107][108] This variant is found in 10% of the Greek manuscripts of Ephesians alongside its inclusion in the Textus Receptus. It is missing from the Sinaiaticus (4th century), Vaticanus (4th century), Alexandrinus (5th century) and Papyrus 46 (3rd century).[109]

The longer ending of Mark (Mark 16:9-20)

Mark 16:9-20 or the longer ending of Mark is a variant found within the Textus Receptus which has generally been assumed to have been a later addition into the text by modern textual critics.[110] The earliest extant complete manuscripts of Mark, Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Vaticanus, two 4th-century manuscripts, do not contain the last twelve verses, 16:9–20. It is also omitted by one Syriac manuscript, the Syriac Sinaiticus (4th century) and one Old Latin manuscript, the Codex Bobbiensis (430ad). It is also missing from some Georgian and Armenian manuscripts and is omitted by Eusebius of Caesarea (4th century), Hesychius of Jerusalem (5th century), Severus of Antioch (5th century) and possibly Origen (3rd century).[111] [112][113]

However, the majority of Greek manuscripts availeable today agree with the Textus Receptus by including the longer ending of Mark.[110] It is included in the Majority/Byzantine Text (over 1,500 manuscripts of Mark), Family 13, Codex Alexandrinus (5th century), Codex Bezae (5th century), Codex Ephraemi (5th century), Codex Koridethi (9th century), Athous Lavrensis (9th century), Codex Sangallensis 48 (9th century), minuscules: 33, 565, 700, 892, 2674. The Vulgate (380ad) and most of the Old Latin, Syriac Curetonian (5th century), Peshitta (5th century), Bohairic, most Sahidic, Gothic (4th century) and the Harklean Syriac (600ad). The passage is also cited by the Epistula Apostolorum (120-140ad), possibly Justin Martyr (160ad), Diatessaron (160–175 AD), Irenaeus (180ad), Hippolytus (died 235ad), Vincentius of Thibaris (256ad), De Rebaptismate (258ad), Acts of Pilate (4th century), Fortunatianus (350ad) and the Apostolic Constitutions (4th century)[114][115][116][117][118]

Due to its presence within most manuscripts within the Byzantine text-type, it is also a charecteristic of Byzantine printed editions of the New Testament such as the texts of Maurice A. Robinson & William G. Pierpont, The Greek New Testament According to the Majority Text (Hodges-Farstad)[95][96] and the Eastern Orthodox Patriarchal text.[119][120]

English translations from the Textus Receptus

See also

Other text-types
Other articles

References

  1. ^ "In time, Erasmus' text becarne known as the "Textus Receptus" (largely through a marketing strategy empioyed by the Elzevir publishers in 1633) - the "received text" implying verbal inspiration." Eisener, Wendell L. (1999). Matthew's Beatitudes in English: a comparative study in the history of translation (Thesis). Acadia University.
  2. ^ Epp, Eldon Jay (2020-11-30). Perspectives on New Testament Textual Criticism, Volume 2: Collected Essays, 2006–2017. BRILL. ISBN 978-90-04-44233-7.
  3. ^ Robertson, A. T. (2014-08-01). An Introduction to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament. Wipf and Stock Publishers. ISBN 978-1-4982-0089-9.
  4. ^ a b c Wettlaufer, Ryan Donald (2013-03-01). No Longer Written: The Use of Conjectural Emendation in the Restoration of the Text of the New Testament, the Epistle of James As a Case Study. BRILL. ISBN 978-90-04-23533-5.
  5. ^ a b Andrews, Edward D. (2023-06-15). THE TEXTUS RECEPTUS: The "Received Text" of the New Testament. Christian Publishing House. ISBN 979-8-3984-5852-7.
  6. ^ a b c F. H. A. Scrivener, A Plain Introduction to the Criticism of the New Testament, (George Bell & Sons: London 1894), vol. 2, pp. 183–184.
  7. ^ a b c Daniel Wallace, "Some Second Thoughts on the Majority Text", Bibliotheca Sacra, July–September, 1989, p. 276.
  8. ^ a b Waltz, Robert B. The Encyclopedia of New Testament Textual Criticism. Robert B. Waltz.
  9. ^ Waltz, Robert B. The Encyclopedia of New Testament Textual Criticism. Robert B. Waltz.
  10. ^ Aland, Kurt; Aland, Barbara (1995). The Text of the New Testament: An Introduction to the Critical Editions and to the Theory and Practice of Modern Textual Criticism. Erroll F. Rhodes (trans.). Grand Rapids: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. p. 140. ISBN 978-0-8028-4098-1.
  11. ^ Heide, Martin (2023-02-07). "Erasmus and the Search for the Original Text of the New Testament". Text & Canon Institute. Retrieved 2024-02-08.
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  20. ^ "The term Textus Receptus or TR, which today is commonly applied to all editions of the Greek NT before the Elzevier's, beginning with Erasmus' in 1516." – W. W. Combs, Erasmus and the textus receptus, DBSJ 1 (Spring 1996): 35–53.
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  23. ^ "Epistle 305" in Collected Works of Erasmus. Vol. 3: Letters 298 to 445, 1514–1516 (tr. R.A.B. Mynors and D.F.S. Thomson; annotated by James K. McConica; Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1976), 32.
  24. ^ "Epistle 337" in Collected Works of Erasmus Vol. 3, 134.
  25. ^ a b W. W. Combs, Erasmus and the textus receptus, DBSJ 1 (Spring 1996), 45.
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  53. ^ NA26, p. 24.
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Sources

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Modern textual criticism
Defense of Textus Receptus