Stewarton Bible School


The Septuagint

The Septuagint is an ancient Greek translation of the Old Testament. It is not inspired.
Tradition has it that the Septuagint (known also as the LXX because 70 scribes were involved in its production) was written some 250 years before the Christian era. But this is not the case.

In his book Forever Settled (published by The Bible For Today: 900 Park Avenue, Collingswood. N.J. 08108 USA) Jack Moorman writes
on page 13 "Paul Kahle ( a famous O.T. scholar) who has done extensive work in the Septuagint does not believe that there was one original old Greek version and that consequently the manuscripts of the Septuagint (so-called) cannot be traced back to one archtype...
Peter Ruckman (in the Christian's handbook of Manuscript Evidence) has taken a similar position. His arguments can be summarized as follows:
  1. The letter of Aristeas is mere fabrication (Kahle calls it propaganda), and there is no historical evidence that a group of scholars translated the O.T. into Greek between 250 - 150 B.C.
  2. The research of Paul Kahle shows that there was no pre-Christian LXX.
  3. No one has produced a Greek copy of the Old Testament written before 300 A.D.
  4. In fact, the Septuagint "quotes" from the New Testament and not vice versa, i.e. in the matter of N.T. - O.T. quotation, the later formulators of the Greek O.T. made it conform with the New Testament Text."

In his masterful book Problem Texts (published by Pensecola Bible Institute Press, P.O. Box 7135, Pensecola, Florida 32504. USA) Peter S Ruckman Ph.D. writes of the Septuagint in Appendix Two,
pages 407-409: "I have a copy of the notorious Septuagint on my desk (Zondervan Publishing Co.1970, from Samuel Baxter & Sons, London). In the Introduction, the party line of the Alexandrian Cult is laid out as neatly as a tiled floor. Our writer says 'THE FACT' may be regarded as 'CERTAIN' that the Greek Old Testament LXX had begun to be translated before 285BC. The evidence for this? Don't be silly; the Alexandrian Cult never deals with evidence.
Every LXX manuscript cited in the Septuagint Concordance was written 200 years after the completion of the New Testament. They are as follows:"

Ruckman then lists the 4 Greek manuscripts from which the Septaugint came. Brief details include:

  1. A- "Alexandrinus:" written more than 300 years after the completion of the New Testament. It omits Genesis 14:14-17; 15:1-6, 16-19, 16:6-10, Leviticus 6:19-23, 1 Samuel 12:17-14:9, 1 Kings 3-6 and Psalms 69:19-79:10.
  2. Aleph-"Sinaiticus:" written more than 200 years after the completion of the New Testament. It omits Genesis 23:19-24:46, Numbers 5:27-7:20, 1 Chronicles 9:27-19:17, all of Exodus, Joshua, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings, Hosea, Amos, Micah, Ezekiel, Daniel and Judges. It contains New Testament Apocrypha.
  3. C- "Codes Ephraemi:" written more than 300 years after the completion of the New Testament. It omits Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings and all of the major and minor prophets!
  4. B -"Vaticanus:" It omits all off Genesis 1:1 - 46:28, all of Psalms 105:26-137:6, and parts of 1 Samuel, I Kings and Nehemiah. It contains the Apocrpha books of the Old Testament.

Ruckman continues:
"Those interested in further damaging evidence will observe that every papyrus manuscript found with any part of the Old Testament in it was written after the resurrection, with the exception of one scrap containing less than six chapters of Deuteronomy on it.
The "Septuagint" papyri
(we have listed all 23 of them with all that they contain and the dates they were written in The Christian's Handbook of Manuscript Evidence pp.48-51, published in 1970) were all written within 60 to 500 years after John finished writing the Book of Revelation."

"The mythological LXX or Septuagint is the most persistent spook to haunt orthodox Christianity since the myth that Christ was born in a cave. The theory is based on abstract speculation of the wildest sort without one piece of reliable documented evidence of ANY kind that there was ever on this earth one single copy of an OLD Testament in GREEK before the heading up of the school at Alexandria by Origen, one hundred years after the entire New Testament was complete, yet to this day there exists on every campus of every fundamental school in the United States the nebulous ghost of this non-existent spook."

If the reader is interested in further studying this issue of Bible Versions and how that the King James Version is the infallible Word of God, then you simply must buy Ruckman's book Problem Texts. Never in all my days have I read such hard-hitting facts in favour of the Authorized Version. But be warned, Ruckman's style is not for the faint-hearted, especially if they are afraid of the facts!

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Elder: David B Loughran
August 1999