-> And out of ALL the books found in the DSS ONLY Isaiah is relatively free
-> differences. Why do your religious masters forward the exception as
-> how representative when it is not? Can you say agenda?
MH> The only reference book I have handy on the DSS says you're wrong.
Name and date of publication please.
MH>Asked in a panel discussion if there are significant differences
MH>between the scrolls and the canonical books, James VanderKam,
MH>(professor of Old Testament at Notre Dame) says:
MH> "I do not know of anything of significance other than maybe a word
MH>that has been dropped out of a text here and there."
MH> He mentions that there was found a Hebrew version of Jeremiah that
MH>corresponds to an already-known Greek version, shorter than the
MH>canonical book ... not different, just condensed.
The Skeptical Review Pages 6-10, 12: autumn 1990 has an article, THE JEREMIAH DILEMMA by Farrell Till that discusses this. It is about 30k or I'd post the whole thing. It's also on the internet world wide web if you have access. Quoting Till:
Joseph A. Fitzmyer, professor emeritus of New Testament at The Catholic University of America, dashed cold water onto the hopes of those who had hastily concluded too much from the Qumran text of Isaiah:
In Cave 4, 157 fragmentary biblical texts were retrieved, among which is every book of the Hebrew canon, save Esther (and Nehemi- ah, which at that time was considered as one book with Ezra). Eventually, these Cave 4 fragments revealed a different story about the copying and transmission of Old Testament writings. In some cases, especially 1-2 Samuel, Jeremiah, and Exodus, the fragments brought to light forms or recensions of biblical books that differed from the medieval Masoretic tradition. For instance, one text turned out to be a shorter Hebrew form of Jeremiah, previously known only in its Greek version in the Septuagint. It now seems that the fuller form of Masoretic tradition represents a Palestinian rewording of the book. Another from Cave 4, written in paleo- Hebrew script and dated from the early second century B.C., con- tains the repetitious expanded form of Exodus previously known only in Samaritan writings, ("The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Bible: After Forty Years," America, October 31, 1987, p. 302A single article can't review all parts of the different story told by the Cave Four discoveries, but an analysis of the Jeremiah manuscript will be sufficient to refute the claim that we can be reasonably sure the present day text of the Bible is essentially the same as what was in the "original autographs."
Scholars had long known before the Cave Four discoveries at Qumran that the Masoretic text of Jeremiah differed substantially from the Greek version found in the Septuagint. Some sections of the Masoretic text were missing entirely from the Septuagint, and other sections were organized differently.
Jeremiah 27:19-22; 33:14-26; 39:3-14; and 48: 45-47 are sections in the Masoretic and various English texts that were not in the Septuagint version. The organizational restructuring is too complex to discuss in detail, but some thirty changes in organization have been identified in the Septuagint version. Chapter 25:15-38 of the Masoretic text appears as chapter 32 in the Septuagint, 27:1-19 is chapter 34, 33:1-14 is chapter 40, and so on through more than thirty other changes in organization.
To explain the problem posed by these variations in the Septuagint version of Jeremiah, proponents of the inerrancy doctrine once attributed the deviations from the Masoretic text to poor translation, but after the discoveries in Cave Four, this "explanation" became hard, if not impossible, to defend.
Just "condensed", hun? Till goes into one "difference" in the shorter version, the missing section 33:14-26. Why would this prophecy about god's eternal kngdom just happen to turn up missing after it was clear that that it wasn't going to be the linage of David? If this really refered to the Christian kingdom represented by Jesus, why didn't it get included in the Septuagint version quoted as inspired by the new testament writers?
Recently the Feb 95 issue of Bible Review carried a similar article, "Tracing the Evolution of the Hebrew Bible" by Adam S. van der Woude that said an even shorter version of Jeremiah existed at Qumran and that the fragments there also show that the books of Exodus and Leviticus have been edited over the years.
While it may be true that the Hebrews "took great care" in copying, it is evident that they were not above changing god's word to fit the times. So much for your religious superstition about the purity of god's word.
Larry Sites <LGSites@aol.com> JC's Fireman: Luke 12:49