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A series of articles describing the illegitimacy of the Critical Text, a new Greek text primarily based on Alexandrian Texts, and from which nearly all modern Bible translations derive.

What You're Not Being Told About The ESV

Response to a preacher's justification for switching from KJV to ESV.

(Video - 49 mins; PDF of slides - 22 slides; Feb. 2024)

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Links Mentioned In The Video

VIDEO of Original Sermon found here.  Again, I have nothing personal against this preacher.

BOOK, Theodore P. Letis, The Ecclesiastical Text

VIDEO, Dr. Pickering, PhD linguist, has been collating manuscripts for over 40 yrs, on text types and families. 1-hour video on the Preservation of God's Word.  Very much worth your time to watch.

BOOK, Dr. David Sorenson, Neither Oldest Nor Best

DVD, What is the Septuagint?

BOOK, David Daniels, linguist, Did Jesus Use The Septuagint?

ONLINE VIEWING: Codex Sinaiticus (Greek) vs Dead Sea Scrolls (Hebrew) comparing Isaiah 1

BOOKS: Bart Ehrman, enemy of the gospel and orthodox Christianity --

  Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed The Bible And Why 

  The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture: The Effect of Early Christological Controversies on the Text of the New Testament

BOOK EXCERPT, Dr. Wilbur Pickering, on the doctrinal impacts of the underlying CT, What Difference Does It Make?

BOOK, Dr. Wilbur Pickering, The Identity of the NT Text, 4th Edition


Clarifications (Feb. 25, 2024):

To Point 1 - False Notion of Inerrancy.

At the 5:56 mark, I discuss Inerrancy vs. Infallibility.  A dear brother (thanks, MikeeT!) provided some additional information for conservative evangelicals and fundamentalists to consider:

"Inerrancy is a red flag word for conservative evangelicals, even if most are ignorant of its true meaning, so you don’t want to be misunderstood here.  The issue that ties inerrancy to truth is inerrant copies via God’s promise of preservation. The downgrade of the doctrine of biblical inspiration has been documented by evangelical leaders."

"Inerrancy here can be helpfully tied into Francis Schaeffer’s last book (he was gravely ill at the time and died shortly after) The Great Evangelical Disaster, as Schaeffer constantly hammers home on this, one of the main points of the book (I quote from others in these next 2 paragraphs)."

"In 1984, well-known Evangelical leader Francis Schaeffer published The Great Evangelical Disaster. The book’s title describes the thesis. The cover jacket says, 'In this explosive new book Dr. Francis Schaeffer exposes the rise of compromise and accommodation, and the tragic consequences of this, within the evangelical church.' The issue that Schaeffer called 'the watershed of Evangelicalism' is the inspiration and authority of the Bible. He testified, 'Within evangelicalism there are a growing number who are modifying their views on the inerrancy of the Bible so that the full authority of Scripture is completely undercut' (The Great Evangelical Disaster, p. 44)."

"Also I could mention, Dr. Harold Lindsell, former vice-president of Fuller Theological Seminary and editor emeritus of Christianity Today, published two volumes on the downgrade of the Bible in evangelicalism, with particular focus on Fuller Seminary, the Southern Baptist Convention, and the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Lindsell’s The Battle for the Bible was first published in 1976. The sequel, The Bible in the Balance, came out in 1979. This careful documentation by a man who was in the inner circle of evangelicalism’s leadership for many decades leaves no doubt about the fact that the evangelical world of the last half of the twentieth century is leavened with apostasy."

"You might also mention George Marsden’s book Reforming Fundamentalism,  on fundamentalism, evangelicalism and neo-evangelicalism, with special emphasis on the downgrade at Fuller Seminary:  'By the year 1982 only about 15 percent of the student body at Fuller Theological Seminary held to the conviction of the seminary’s founders that the Scripture is inerrant' (George Marsden, Reforming Fundamentalism, p. 268)."

To Point 3 - Septuagint

At the 26:30 mark, I said there are zero extant manuscripts for the Septuagint.  I left off his ending phrase "200 BC", and the arrows began to fly!

It is true there are no BC-era source documents for the Septuagint, but there are some AD-era sources which men call the Septuagint (LXX for short). David Daniels (who has researched this extensively and wrote about it) reports the main two versions are Lancelot Brenton's 1851 Septuagint with Apocrypha: Greek and English (based on Vaticanus and some Alexandrinus) and the Ralhfs-Hanhart Septuaginta from 1935, updated in 2006, based on a blend of Sinaiticus, Vaticanus and Alexandrinus. These source documents are 400 AD*, not 200 BC. (* Dr. Sorenson carefully demonstrates 15th century AD not 400 AD, but that's superfluous for this point.)  

Thus, the reality of the extant Greek manuscripts are not a unified corpus, but a collection of different copies from different translators over early AD periods and from different locations.  This contradicts the narrative of the 72 or 70 Hebrews in 200 BC collectively giving little Hebrew kids a good Greek translation. Only the Letter of Aristeas claims it was written in 200 BC. Readers will want to consider Bruce Metzger in his (and other's) assessment of the Letter of Aristeas.

So who cares?  Well, the LXX is presumed to be source material for the Old Testament in the Alexandrian manuscripts, and many Bible commentaries on the NT claim Jesus quotes from the Septuagint, which means He believes it is authoritative. The LXX contains the Apocrypha, adds Psalm 151, adds to Daniel, takes a shotgun to the book of Job, hand-jams Romans 3:13-18 into Psalm 13:3 (our Psalm 14), changes Genesis 3:15 to say "she" will bruise the serpents head (not "it", referring to the Seed), changes Isaiah 7:14 to "a young woman will conceive" (not a "virgin"), and so on. If Jesus used the alleged BC LXX, it must be Scripture -- errors, additions and all.  But if the LXX came after (AD), then it is mangled Scripture and to be rejected.

To Point 5 - No Matters Of Faith Are Affected

At the 36:44 mark, I introduce three books from Text Critical scholar Bart D. Ehrman, Chair of the Department of Religious Studies at Univ. of North Carolina - Chapel Hill.  He was raised Episcopalian, received his undergraduate degree at Wheaton College, MDiv and PhD from Princeton Theological Seminary.  His doctoral advisor was Bruce Metzger, another heavy hitter in the field of text criticism. In short, Prof. Erhman would be proud of this Baptist's preacher presentation of text criticism.  Perhaps in due time, the preacher's teachings will lead his congregation into the same spiritual path Bart took, landing them into agnostic atheism (God forbid!).  Hear from the Introduction to his New York Times bestseller, Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed The Bible and Why --

"What good does it do to say that the words are inspired by God if most people have absolutely no access to these words ... What good is it to say that the autographs (i.e., the originals) were inspired? We don't have the originals! We have only error-ridden copies, and the vast majority of these are centuries removed from the originals and different from them, evidently, in thousands of ways." [p.7]

"What is one to make of all these differences? If one wants to insist that God inspired the very words of scripture, what would be the point if we don't have the very words of scripture? ... I came to realize that it would have been no more difficult for God to preserve the words of scripture than it would have been for him to inspire them in the first place.  If he wanted his people to have his words, surely he would have given them to them ... The fact that we don't have the words surely must show, I reasoned, that he did not preserve them for us.  And if he didn't perform that miracle, there seemed to be no reason to think that he performed the earlier miracle of inspiring those words. ... The Bible began to appear to me as a very human book ... from beginning to end." [p.11]

"It is a radical shift from reading the Bible as an inerrant blueprint for our faith, life, and future to seeing it as a very human book, with very human points of view, many of which differ from one another and none of which provides the inerrant guide to how we should live.  This is the shift in my own thinking that I ended up making, and to which I am now fully committed." [p.13]

The largest doctrinal impact is to verbal plenary preservation.  Jesus told the Father He has given us His word (John 17:8,14).  God says He gave it to us and would preserve it (Ps. 12:6-7, 119:89). The Word of God is alive, abiding with us and enduring forever (1Peter 1:23-25; Isa. 40:8; Ps. 119:152,160). In fact, it's easier for heaven and earth to pass, than for one jot or tittle of the law to fail (Lk. 16:17, 21:33; Mt. 5:18).  His Word is incorruptible (1Peter 1:23), very pure (Ps. 12:6, 18:30, 119:140; Prov. 30:5-6). The Word will judge all mankind at the end (John 12:48).

I leave an excellent quote from Dr. Paul Elliott at Teaching The Word ministries:

"If God has at any point incorporated erroneous human beliefs into the teaching of Scripture, at that point we cannot trust the Bible.  If we cannot trust the Bible at even one single point, God is a liar, for He tells us that the whole of His Word is trustworthy.  If God is a liar, we cannot be certain of His Word at any point, and therefore we cannot trust His Word at all." (Source: Christianity and Neo-Liberalism: The Spiritual Crisis in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church and Beyond, 2005: Trinity Foundation, Unicoi, TN; pg. 98.) 

To Point 6 - ESV and Eclectic Text

The term "eclectic text" is not my creation.  Here is Prof. Bart Ehrman's definition of an eclectic text, along with his impact statement, described in The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture:

"... an eclectic text ... is a form of the text that does not actually exist in any known witnesses.  There is no way of knowing whether it ever existed in any witness." [p.346]

"The eclectic text that results from the critical effort to reconstruct the earliest form of the text, as I pointed out, produces in every case a text that is nowhere attested and may well never have been attested. Why should this form of the text be privileged, for example, by being in the text that is printed with variants from it being relegated to an apparatus?" [p.349-350]

Thus, even the Bible critics don't believe the CT has any reason to be elevated to a primary position; wh ich I take to mean, it's not a suitable canon.  Wow!

In Questions To Ask

At the 46:25 mark, I mentioned a video where James White could not cite any verse of scripture as canonical.  The actual question was, "can you show me one verse you are 100% sure is not up for grabs?"  That 2-1/2 minute clip is here, from the 2023 Kept Pure conference, which I highly recommend.


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