Saturday, 3 June 2017

Like a Dove and Textual Variants

#textual variant #gospels #greeknewtestament

A lot of people make a fuss about textual variants in the gospels however most of these variants are simply one of two words that do not effect doctrine.

Lets take Jesus' Baptism as an example.

My English version is the RSV

Matthew 3:16 behold the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him

Mark 1:10 saw the heavens opened and the Spirit descending upon him like a dove

Luke 3:21-22 the heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form as a dove,

John 1:32 I (john the baptist) saw the Spirit descend as a dove from heaven

Really the only issue should be if there were any eye witnesses apart from John the Baptist?

All 4 accounts agreed the heavens opened that there was some sort of visual change in the air and that something came down katabaino that looked like a dove that the bystanders thought was the pneuma or spirit of god .

The main differences in Greek?

Matthew says open in aorist passive and uses hoosie instead of hoos and the greek says come down upon him erkhomenon epp autoon

Mark uses skhizoo split open  and eis instead of epi but eis can mean both into and onto

Luke gets more technical and uses somatikos plus eidei  and adds hagios holy to spirit

John emphasizes the Baptist as an eyewitness.

All 4 versions use katabaino All agree on a movement downwards materializing as something that looked like a dove that came down on Jesus.

And cynics might say it was a trained dove etc etc etc but the point is don't fuss over just one or two words when meanings are in concord?

Mid week back to Greek gods ... Next weekend either another word study or we start on Marks Gospel.