The Vaticanus and Sinaiticus
Vaticanus and Sinaiticus;
Textual Theory of Westcott and Hort:
I feel that my book has completely covered the ground of the manuscript and, the quotations from my authorities have fully sustained my positions. However, since my Reviewers bring a number of charges against me, relating to the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus in particular, we will be obliged to beg your indulgence to take, the matter a little further. They have brought against me the following charges:
1. That I failed to show any relationship between the Hexapla or Origen, and the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus of the New Testament. (Review, Concl. p.4 #4)
2. That I failed to establish Eusebius as the author of the Vaticanus, and Origen as the author of the Sinaiticus. (Review, Concl. p.4 #3)
3. That I failed to prove that these two MSS could be two of the 50 Bibles supplied to Constantine from Caesarea by Eusebius. (Review Concl. p.4, #4)
4. That in the case of a quotation from the Catholic Encyclopedia, with reference to the Hexapla, I failed, (a) to prove that the MS had ever been at Constantinople; (Sec. I, p. 26 #2); (b) to prove its origin (Sec. I, p.26, #1); and (c) to prove that Aleph can be "decended from the same ancestor" as B. (Sec. I, p.26, #3)
5. That I failed to show that the manuscripts were corrupted by the papists. (Review concl. p.5, #5)
With regard to No. 1, namely, that I failed to show any relationship between the Hexapla of Origin and B (The Vaticanus) and Aleph (Sinaiticus) in the New Testament, I will quote from Dr. A.T. Robertson that the Old Testament and New Testament were bound together in one volume.
"But now" (In days of Constantine) " a complete Bible for the first time could be bound together containing both the Old Testament and the New Testament. " "Introduction to N.T. Criticism", p. 80.
Now the manuscripts prepared by Eusebius, for the Emperor Constantine must have had a New Testament of an Origenistic type, because Eusebius was admitted by all historians and textual critics to be an admirer and follower of Origen. I will quote from Dr. F.C. Cook, an outstanding textual scholar who was invited to sit on the New Testament Revision Committee, but refused. He Says:
"In his criticism of the New Testament Origen had greater advantages, and he used them with greater success. Every available source of information he studied carefully. Manuscripts and versions were before him; both manuscripts and versions he examined, and brought out the results of his researches with unrivalled power. A text formed more or less directly under his influence would of course command a certain amount of general adhesion.... Now when we once more apply these observations to a text, which on other grounds we maintain to be substantially or completely identical with that which was published under the influence of Eusebius, we are driven to the conclusion that such characteristics are to be looked for... That Eusebius was an enthusiastic admirer, a devoted adherent of Oriqen, no one need to be reminded who knows aught of the history of that age, or who has read, however hastily, his history of the early church; that in all questions he would defer absolutely to the authority of Origen, especially in questions of criticism, is almost equally undeniable; or do I hesitate to state my immovable conviction that in that influence is to be found the true solution of the principal phenomena which perplex or distress us in considering the readings of the Vatcan and Sinaitic Manuscripts." "History of the Revised version", pp. 155, 157. (Emphasis mine.)
It must be perfectly plain to you that Dr. Cook here ties Origen to Eusebius and to the Sinaitic and Vatican Manuscripts: and in the New Testament as well as in the Old.
Now all these conclusions are practically given in my book; if not expressly, at least by implication. Was I under obligation to say everything that can be said about an event, especially when my book covered such a vast amount of territory?
My Reviewers seek to indict me for considering that the Eusebian New Testament part of the Vatican and Sinaitic MSS was the text of Origen, as they seem to admit was the case with the Old Testament. (Sec. I, pp. 27, 28) Then they must indict Dr. Price, Dr. Robertson, Dr. Gregory, Burgon and Mille and Dr. Scrivener, Dr. Tischendorf even; for they all assume that the N.T. part of the Eusebian Bibles were of the Eusebio-Origen type as well as the Old Testament portion.
I wrote in my book (pages 20, 21) that "both these MSS were written in Greek, each contained the whole Bible." Statements from Dr. Robertson and others prove:
(1) That the Old Testament part of the Constantine Bibles was the Hexapla of Origen, and
(2) That it was bound with a Greek New Testament in the same Bible. I have right here raised a strong probability of a relationship between the Hexapla of the Old Testament and the New Testament of the Constantine Bibles. Now I did bring such good authorities to show that the Old Testament portion of the Constantine Bibles was the Hexapla, that my Reviewers admitted proof on that point. They say, (Section I, p. 28):
"The conclusion is, therefore unavoidable that the fifty copies of the Hexapla made for Constantine were of the fifth column Septuagint, which is confined to the Old Testament."
Very well; when they say that the fifty copies made for Constantine possessed for the old Testament the Hexapla, they admit that the Old Testament of the fifty copies was of a Eusebio-Origen type, since the text is Origen and the manuscript upon which the text is written is of Eusebius; and this you note is all I claimed in my book. For in my book I said (page 21):
"Whether or not the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus were actually two of the fifty Bibles furnished by Eusebius for Constantine, at least they belonged to the same family as the Hexapla, the Eusebio-Origin type."
For further proof, just at this point, I would like to give quotations from seven authorities that these two MSS could very well be part of the fifty Bibles furnished by Eusebius for Constantine.
(1) Dr. Robertson singles out these two manuscripts as possibly two of the fifty Constantine Bibles. He says:
"Constantine himself ordered fifty Greek Bibles from Eusebius, Bishop of Caesarea, for the churches in Constantinople. It is quite possible that Aleph and B are two of these fifty." "Introduction to Textual Criticism," p, 80. (emphasis mine)
(2) Dr. Gregory, a recent scholar in the field of manuscripts, also thinks of them in connection with the fifty. We quote from him:
"This Manuscript (Vaticanus) is supposed, as we have seen, to have come from the same place as the Sinaitic Manuscript. I have said that these two show connections with each other, and and that they would suit very well as a pair of the fifty manuscripts written at Caeserea for Constantine the Great.", "The Canon and Text of New Testament," p. 345.
(3) Two outstanding scholars, Burgon and Miller, thus expressed their belief that in the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus MSS we have two of the Bibles prepared by Eusebius for the Emperor:
"Constantine applied to Eusebius for fifty handsome copies, among which it is not improbable that the manuscripts B and Aleph were to be actually found. But even if that is not so, the Emperor would not have selected Eusebius for the order, if that Bishop had not been in the habit of providing copies: and Eusebius in fact carried on the work which he had commenced under is friend Pamphilus, and in which the latter must have followed the path pursued by Origen. Again Jerome is known to have resorted to this quarter." "Traditional Text", p. 163. (Emphasis mine)
(4) Dr. Cook in his "Revised Version of the first Three Gospels" says:
"And if not absolutely proved, I hold it to be established as in the highest degree probable, that Eusebius was the superintendent; and that we have in these two manuscripts (Vatican and and Sinaitic) the only extant memorials of his recension." page 183 (Emphasis mine)
(5) Dr. Schaff also says, of the copies of the Constantine Bible provided by Eusebius, the following:
"Molz, in a note regards these as lectionaries, but they are usually thought to have been regular copies of the Scriptures in Greek-Septuagint and N.T. and the Codex Sinaiticus has been thought to be one of them... The fact that the Sinaiticus exhibits two or three hands suggests that it was prepared with rapidity, and the having various scribes was a way to speed."
"The parchment copies were usually arranged in quarternions i.e. four leaves made up together , as the ternions consisted of three leaves. The Quarternions each contained sixteen pages the ternions twelve. So probably, although the three-columned form of the Sinaiticus and the four of the Vaticanus suggest a possible other meaning." Footnote on "Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers" Vol. I, 549. (Ephasis mine)
(6) I quote again from Burgon and Miller:
"But in connecting B and Aleph with the library at Caesarea we are not left only to conjecture or inference. In a well known colophon affixed to the end of the book of Esther in Aleph by the third corrector, it is stated that from the beginning of the book of Kings to the end of Esther the MS was compared with a copy 'corrected by the hand of the holy martyr Pamphilus,' which itself was written and corrected after the Hexapla of Origen. And a similar colophon may be found attached to the book of Ezra. It is added that the Codex Sinaiticus... and the Codex Pamphili manifested great agreement with one another. The probability that Aleph was thus at least in part copied from a manuscript executed by Pamphilus and Eusebius; and that Origen's recension of the Old Testament, although he published no edition of the text of the New, possessed a great reputation. On the books of the Chronicles, St. Jerome mentions manuscripts executed by Origen with great care, which were published by Pamphilus and Eusebius. And in Codex H of St. Paul it is stated that that MS was 'compared with a MS in the library of Caesarea which was written by the hand of the holy Pamphilus.' These notices added to the frequent reference by St. Jerome and others to the critical MSS, by which we are to understand those which were distinguished by the approval of 0rigen or were in consonance with the spirit of Origen, show evidently the position in criticism which the Library at Caesarea and its illustrious founder had won in those days. And it is quite in keeping with that position that Aleph should have been sent forth from that 'school of criticism'." "The Traditional Text", pp. 164, 165. (Emphasis mine)
In this quotation from Burgon and Miller, you will note that he marshals in line seven separate proofs that B and Aleph were Eusebio-Origen manuscripts. First, from the well-known colophon at the end of Esther, claiming that the portion of the Old Testament from Kings to Esther was corrected by the hand of the "holy martyr, Pamphilus." Secondly, that a similar colophon was attached to Ezra. Thirdly, this colophon adds that the Codex Sinaiticus and the Codex Pamphili manifested great agreement with one another. Fourthly the Codex Marchalianus is often mentioned which was due to Pamphilus Eusebius. Fifthly, St. Jerome on the books of Chronicels mentions that manuscripts executed by Origan with great care and published by Pamphilus and Eusebius. Sixthly, the Codex H of St. Paul states that it was compared with the menuscripts in the Library of Caesarea, "which was written by the hand of the Holy Pamphilus". Seventhly, Jerome and others give references to critical manuscripts which are understood to be those distinguished by the approval or in consonance with the spirit of Origen.
(7) Dr. Tischendorf takes the same postiton. (Dr. Robinson, "Where Did We Get Our Bible", p. 116)
(8) Abbe Martin, celebrated Catholic textual critic, claims that the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus (as well as 3 other ancient MSS, A,C,D) were 'fabricated' from the Origen, and other Greek fathers. (See Schaff, "Companion to the Greek Testament" p. XIV).
Burgon and Miller then concluded that if Aleph was from the Library of Caesarea then B must also have been; that is, if the supposition certified by Tischendorf and Scrivener by true, that the six conjugated leaves in Aleph were written by the scribe of B. Dr. Robinson (Where did We Get Our Bible, p. 117), and others say that there is (on the general fact of Aleph and B agreeing against the Textus Receptus) not much difference between the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus.
Right here I wish to bring in a fact not very well known but which enters in a significant way into the whole situation. When the Council of Trent, (1545-1563) in its effort to check Protestantism voted to adopt the Vulgate as the authoritative Bible of the Roman Catholic Church, it sought to find a backing for the Vulgate in some Greek manuscripts. I will quote the following from Dr. Swete:
"The reader will not fail to note the intelligent appreciation of the LXX., and the wide outlook over the history of the Greek versions which are implied by these documents. They show that the Vatican had already learnt the true value of the Alexandrian Old Testament and, as a consequence, had resolved to place in the hands of the scholars of Europe as pure a text as could be obtained of the version which was used by the ancient Church, and was now felt to be essential to a right understanding of the Fathers and of the Latin Vulgate. The inception of the work was due to Pope Sixtus himself, who had suggested it to his predecessor Gregory XIII in 1578; but the execution was entrusted to Cardinal Antonio Carara and a little band of Roman scholars including Cardinal Sirleto, Antonil Agelli, and Petrus Morinus. Search was made in the libraries of Italy as well as in the Vatican for MSS of the LXX., but the result of these inquiries satisfied the editors of the superiority of the great Vatican Codex (B-cod. Vat. gr. 1209) over all other known codices, and it was accordingly taken as the basis of the new addition." "Introduction to the O.T. in Greek," pp. 180, 181. (Emphasis mine.)
Another quotation, from Tregelles, will sustain my contention that it, was the anxious desire of the Council of Trent to use the Vulgate as its great battle weapon against Protestantism, which sent the Catholic Church hurrying to the Vatican MS for refuge and for a foundation. Note that this was in the year 1578, or a quarter of a century before the AV appeared. In fact it was because the Council of Trent chose and printed and circulated in 1586 the Old Testament portion of the Vatican MS that Dr. Tregelles was convinced that he should choose the Vatican MS as his model for the New Testement. Notice that Dr. Tregelles was a model for Westcott and Hort, and that he was a member of the New Testament Revision Committee, but he in turn received his light, his lead from the Council of Trent. Tregelles says:
"About seventy years after this first (i.e. the Aldine Edition) appeared, the Roman edition of the LXX was published (1586), based on the Codex Vaticanus; how was it that the Roman text obtained such a currency as to displace the Aldine, and to maintain its stand in public estimation for more than two centuries and a half? How should Protestants been willing to concede such an honour to this text which appeared under Papal sanction? It gained its ground and kept it because it was really an ancient text, such in its general complexion as was read by the early fathers. The Roman editors shrewdly guessed the antiquity of their MS from the form of the letters, etc., and that too in an age when Palaeography was but little known; they inferred the character of its text, partly from its age, partly from its accordance with early citations; and thus, even though they departed at times inadvertently from their MS they gave a text vastly superior to that of the New Testament in common use from the days of Erasmus." "Account of Printed Text", p. 185.
Now we see where the great importance of the action of the Council of Trent leads us. It declared that Jerome's Vulgate to be properly grounded upon a substantial Greek Manuscript must rely upon the Vaticanus for that foundation and defense. But Dr. Scrivener tells in so many words that the readings approved by Origen, Eusebius, and Jerome should closely agree. It is therefore conclusively evident that the Vaticanus Manuscript in Greek as the bulwark and defense of Jerome's version in Latin, would be a Eusebio-Origen manuscript.
Dr. Hoskier informs us that Drs. Wordsworth and White think Jerome used a codex very much resembling Aleph (Sinaiticus) and B (Vaticanus). (Hoskier, Codex B and Its Allies 11:194 note). Dr. Phillip Schaff points out that Abbie Martin, the famous Roman Catholic textual critic, claims that the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus were "fabricated" by Origen, (Companion XIII, XIV).
Since the Constantine Bible containing both the O.T. and N.T. is proved to be a bible of the Eusebio-Oriqen type; and since B and Aleph are manuscripts of the Eusebio-Origen type, it follows then that the statement I made in my book is true, and not "unwarranted" as my Reviewers say; "The Latin Vulgate, the Sinaiticus, the Vaticanus, the Hexapla, Jerome, Eusebius, and Origen, are terms for ideas that are inseparable in the minds of those who know." page 22, "Our Authorized bible Vindicated."
Furthermore my Reviewers, as well as the Revisers, are determined to place the date of the execution of Codices Aleph and B about the year 350 A.D. Now we know that Eusebius produced for Constantine his fifty bibles somewhere between 330 and 340 A.D. We positively know that Aleph and B could not be the Textus Receptus; and neither my reviewers nor the Revisers would stand for that. It is therefore conclusive that both the Constantine Bibles and the Codices Aleph and B were of the Eusebio-Origen school.
With regard to Origen, Pamphilus and Eusebius and their work upon the New Testament, I will give three quotations. The first is from Dr. Kenyon, who says:
"In textual scholarship, indeed, Origen has no rival among ancient writers, and no single individual hays exercised so wide an influence upon the Biblical text as he. It is with regard to the Greek text of the Old Testament that the precise character of his work is most fully known; but there can be little doubt that his critical labours on the New Testament were almost equally Epoch making." "Criticism of the New Testament," pp. 251, 252. (Emphasis mine).
Again on page 329 of his book, Kenyon says:
"If, however, the statement is made a little wider, and B and Aleph are connected with the Origenian school of textual criticism, whether in Alexandria OR in Caesarea, the evidence in support of it is more adequate. Directly or indirectly, then, it would appear that we must look to Egypt for the origin of the Beta text, of which these MSS are the principal representatives." "Criticism of N.T.", pp. 329, 330.
Dr. Robertson thinks of Aleph and B in connection with the labours of Pamphilus and Eusebius in the Library of Caesarea filled with the manuscripts of Origen. He says:
"Pamphilus of Caesarea (died 309) did not write much, but he founded a great theological library at Caesarea which included the works of Origen. He was a disciple of Origen. It is possible that both Aleph and B were copied in this library, though most likely in Egypt, but both MSS were at any rate once in Caesarea if the correctors can be trusted."... "Eusebius of Caesarea lived from about 270 to 340. For the last twenty-seven years he was Bishop of Caesarea. He was a pupil and protege of Pamphilus and had full access to his library." - "Introduction to Textual Criticism," p. 140.
Another quotation from Dr. Nolan, will show the corrupt influence of Origen on the New Testament as well as upon the Old. He says:
"As he had laboured to supersede the authorized version of the Old Testament, he contributed to weaken the authority of the received text of the New. In the course of his Commentaries, he cited the versions of Aquila, Symmachus, and Theodotion, on the former part of the Canon, he appealed to the authority of Valentinus and Heracleon on the latter. While he thus raised the credit of those revisals, which had been made by the heretics, he detracted from the authority of that text which had been received by the orthodox. Some difficulties which he found himself unable to solve in the Evangelists, he undertook to remove, by expressing his doubts of the integrity of the text. In some instances he ventured to impeach the reading of the New Testament on the testimony of the Old, and to convict the copies of one Gospel on the evidence of another thus giving loose to his fancy, and indulging in many wild conjectures, he considerably impaired the credit of the vulgar or common edition as well in the New as in the Old-Testament." "Integrity of the Greek Vulgate", pp. 432, 434. (Emphasis mine.)
In view of the above evidence I contend that I have answered the first accusation; namely, that I failed to show any relationship between the Hexapla of Origen and B and Aleph of the New Testament. Though I have multiplied authorities here, the same proof and same conclusion however is in my book. I further contend that I have answered the second charge, that I failed to establish Eusebius as the author of the Vaticanus, and Origen as the author of the Sinaiticus; because I plainly showed that these manuscripts were of a Eusebio-Origen type. Of course, this must be taken in a general sense for two reasons: (1) Neither Eusebius nor Origen, technically speaking, put their hand to any of those manuscripts; for an army of scribes both at their command, and in other centers of learning would copy their texts. (2) I plainly indicated in my book by several expressions, that I was talking also in a general sense.
I have now proven that which they said in the third charge, that I failed to prove; namely, that these two manuscripts could be two of the fifty Bibles supplied to Constantine by Eusebius.
Now with regard to the fourth charge made against me (Sec. I, p. 26.) because of my use of the quotation from the Catholic Encyclopedia, with reference to the Hexapla, that (a) I failed to prove its origin, (b) I failed to prove that the MSS had ever been at Constantinople, (c) I failed to prove that Aleph can be "descended from the same ancestor" as B !
Charges a, b and c (Sec. I, p. 26) are based upon what they claim to be my misuse of a quotation from the Catholic Encyclopedia, but here again my Reviewers fail to grasp my procedure. I did not use the Catholic Encyclopedia as the source of my authority in what I was saying. I used the Catholic Encyclopedia as an authority to show what was written upon the Sinaitic manuscript by the hand of its third corrector. In other words I had a quotation within a quotation. The interior quotation was what was written in the Sinaitic manuscript itself. My argument was based upon that and not from any opinion given from the Catholic Encyclopedia. It is true that I used an introductory phrase and a closing phrase from the Catholic Encyclopedia simply to make the connection, but I was not using it as an authority; because, generally speaking, it is not an authority with me in matters of opinion, only in matters of fact.
(a) With regard to charge (a) I think all that I have said above is evidence enough that in my book I proved the Eusebio-Origen source of the Sinaitic manuscript.
(b) I will now answer the charge that I failed to prove that the MS had ever been at Constantinople. Of course my Reviewers are using that statement in the Catholic Encyclopedia which says, "there is no sign of it having been at Constantinople" In the first place this is not a point of vital importance to the main line of argument; and in the second place, there are authorities who indicate all of the fifty manuscripts ordered by Constantine may not have gone to Constantinople. I quote the following from Dr. Gregory.
"Those (churches) in Constantinople itself probably got the greater part of them, (50 Bibles), since Constantine mentioned them in writing to Eusebius. Yet he may have sent one or another to a more distant church of importance in order to honour the bishop who presided over it." "Canon and Text". p. 328 (Emphasis mine)
It is evident that my Reviewers made too much of this technicality.
(c) I certainly am surprised that my Reviewers have brought against me this additional count based on the Catholic Encyclopedia quotation, that the omitted part reads: "It cannot be descended from the same ancestor." (Sec . 1, page 26, #3). Will my hearers be surprised to learn that the omitted part does not read that way? Kindly glance back to the quotation which they quoted from the Catholic Encyclopedia. In the Catholic Encyclopedia the omitted part reads "Though it cannot be descended from the same immediate ancestor." (Emphasis mine). I submit to you whether there is not a difference between the same ancestor and the same immediate ancestor. My uncle and I are descended from the same ancestor but not from the same immediate ancestor. It would be proper now for my Reviewers to indict themselves instead of me for quoting wrongly from the Catholic Encyclopedia, and basing an argument upon the wrong quotation.
I will now answer the fifth of the charges, which center around the Sinaiticus and Vaticanus to the effect that "I failed to show that the MSS were corrupted by the papists." (Sec. Concl., p. 5, #5 ) I will now cite seven authorities to show that those MSS were corrupted:
1. I will first quote from Dr. F.C. Cook, textual critic who was invited to sit on the Revision Committee, but refused. He said:
"But it is precisely on this ground that I have throughout maintained the wrongfulness of the innovations introduced into the Revised Version, so far as they affect leading facts and great words recorded in the first three Gospels. The reader need but look at the passages enumerated in the classification given above, p. 136 seq., to be convinced that so far from resting upon the consentient testimony of ancient manuscripts, versions, and Fathers, by far the greater number of innovations including those which give the severest shocks to our minds are adopted on the authority of two manuscripts (Vaticanus and Sinaiticus), or even of one manuscript, against the distinct testimony of all other manuscripts, uncial and cursive." "Revised Version of First Three Gospels," p. 227.
"I cannot but maintain that if the majority of those readings, which we call omissions, are subjected to any external test, if tried by any other measure than that of the manuscripts themselves, they will be convicted as defects, or blunders, or innovations more or less erroneous, to whatever cause the mischief be attributable. The tests to which I would refer are, first, the more ancient arid trustworthy Versions; secondly, citations in ante-Nicene Fathers; and thirdly, the consensus of manuscripts, including those which in doubtful cases so generally coincide with Aleph and B as to leave little room for doubt that their text was founded on the same original authorities." Ibid, p. 171.
Dr. Cook also says:
"Reiche then observes that he fully admits the value of those manuscripts, A,B,C,D, which often retain true readings alone or in combination with a few other authorities; but that it is equally true that it is impossible to deny that in very many places (per multis locis) they have false readings partly due to negligence, partly intentional;... Moreover that those MSS, to which critics in Germany attach exclusive importance, are of Egyptian, or rather Alexandrian origin, so that all belong to one family, a fact evidenced by their singular consent in peculiar readings; and lastly that all documents of the N.T. coming from Alexandria, at that time the home of ever-bold criticism, abound in readings which are manifestly false." Ibid, page 7 (Emphasis mine)
Dr. Miller says:
"The marks of carlessness spread over them, especially prevailing in Aleph, (Sinaiticus) are incomparable with perfection. Tischendorf, after collating B, spoke of the blemishes that occur throughout. Dr. Dobbin reckons 2,556 omissions in B as far as Heb. 9:14, where it terminates. Vercellone, the editor, tells of 'perpetual omissions,' of 'half a verse, a whole verse, and even several verses.' This is just what examination reveals and Aleph is unquestionably worse," Miller's "Textual Guide", p. 56
With regard to Codex B (Vaticanus) Dr. Scrivener says:
"One marked feature characteristic of this copy, is the great number of its omissions, which has induced Dr. Dobbin to speak of it as presenting on abbreviated text of the New Testament: and certainly the facts he states on this point are startling enough. He calculates that Codex B leaves out words or clauses no less than 330 times in Matthew, 365 in Mark, 439 in Luke, 357 in John, 384 in the Acts, 681 in the surviving Epistles; or 2,556 times in all. That no small proportion of these are mere oversights of the scribe seems evident from the circumstance that this same scribe has repeatedly written words and clauses twice over, a class of mistakes which Mai and the collators have seldom thought fit to notice, inasmuch as the false addition has not been retraced by the second hand, but which by no means enhances our estimate of the care employed in copying this venerable record of primitive Christianity ." Scrivener, "Introduction", Vol. I, p. 120.
With regard to the Sinaiticus Dr. Scrivener published a book entitled, "A Full Collation of the Codex Sinaiticus," and in his introduction he states:
"The Codex is covered with such alterations," (alterations of an obviously textual, character) "brought in by at least ten different revisers, some of them systematically spread over every page, others occasional or limited to separate portions of the manuscript, many of them being contemporaneous with the first writer, far the greater part belonging to the sixth or seventh century..." "A Full Collation of the Codex Sinaiticus," p. XIX Introduction.
This shows the thoroughly corrupt and defective work of the original scribes.
Consider the meaning of the facts disclosed here. The Revisers considered this document to be sufficiently a standard by which all other manuscripts of the Bible were to be weighed and revised. Nevertheless the document itself bears upon the face of it the evidence that those who owned it permitted ten different correctors from the first, to stretch into several hundred years the work of going over it and spreading upon its face their corrections.
4. I will now submit to you two quotations from Burgon and Miller, which will present the corruptions of these manuscripts, and the three others which generally run with them, in a new light:
"But when we study the New Testament by the light of such Codices as B, (?), DL, we find ourselves in an entirely new experience; confronted by phenomena not only unique but even portentous. The text has undergone apparently an habitual, if not systematic, depravation; has been manipulated throughout in a wild way. Influences have been demonstrably at work which altogether perplex the judgment. The result is simply calamitous. There are evidences of persistent mutilation not only of words and clauses, but of entire sentences. The substitution of one expression for another, and the arbitrary transposition of words, are phenomena of such perpetual occurrence, that it becomes evident at last that what lies before us is not so much an ancient copy, as an ancient recension of the Sacred Text.", Traditional Text," p. 32
Again they say:
"Now I submit that it is a sufficient condemnation of Codices B, (?), CD as a supreme court of Judicature (1) that as a rule they are observed to be discordant in their judgments: (2) That when they thus differ among themselves it is generally demonstrable by an appeal to antiquity that the two principle judges B and Aleph have delivered a mistaken judgment: (3) That when these two differ one from the other, the supreme judge B is often wrong: and lastly (4) That it constantly happens that all four agree and yet all four are in error." Ibid, p. 37.
I desire right here to particularly emphasize the three other uncials beside Aleph and B and several cursives, all of which generally run with Aleph and B. You will always notice, as many outstanding textual critics point out that cursives No. 1, 13, 23, 33, 69, 124, 127, 208, 209; these of the thousands of cursives, generally run with Aleph and B. They show plainly that they are from the Eusebic-Origen school. Dr. Hoskier says that it would almost seem as if the parents of the cursives No. 33 and 127 have been anointed by Origen himself. (Vol.2, p. 147). While I have recognized that in making up their Greek New Testament both the Revisers and Westcott and Hort used other manuscripts than Aleph and B; nevertheless, as I have indicated, generally they were manuscripts which also were for the most part of the Eusebio-Origen school, and few in number compared with the great body of MSS.
5. I will now add a quotation from Mr. Philip Mauro, as follows:
"But there are other characteristics of this old MS (Sinaiticus) which have to be taken into consideration if a correct estimate of its evidential value is to be reached. Thus, there are internal evidences that lead to the conclusion that it was the work of the scribe who was singularly careless, or incompetent or both. In this MS the arrangement of the lines is peculiar, there being four columns on each page, each line containing about twelve letters... all capitals run together. There is no attempt to end a word at the end of a line, for even words having only two letters as en, ek, are split in the middle, the last letter being carried over to the beginning of the next line, though there was ample room for it on the line preceding. This and other peculiarities give us an idea of the character and competence of the scribe." "Which Version", p. 45.
A few more words from Dr. Scrivener on the character of the Sinaiticus:
"This manuscript must have been derived from one more ancient, in which the lines were similarly divided, since the writer occasionally omits just the number of letters which would suffice to fill a line, and that to the utter ruin of the sense: as if his eye had heedlessly wandered to the line immediately below. Instances of this want of care will be found (in) Luke 21:8; 22:25, perhaps John 4:45;12;25, where complete lines are omitted; John, 19:26; Heb. 13:18 (Partly corrected); Apoc. 8:16; 19:12; 22:2, where the copyist passed in the middle of a line to the corresponding portion of the line below. It must be confessed, indeed, that the Codex Sinaiticus abounds with similar errors of the eye and pen, to an extent not unparalleled, but happily rather unusual in documents of first-rate importance; so that Tregelles has freely pronounced that 'the state of text, as proceeding from the first scribe, may be regarded as very rough.'" "Collation on the Codex Sinaiticus," p.XV.
6. Dr. Hoskier in his two large volumes covering 1,000 pages entitled "Codex B and Its Allies; a Study and an Indictment" introduced his great work with this expression, "It is high time that the bubble of Codex B should be pricked."
Dr. Hoskier wrote these two volumes in the year 1914. This is interesting to note, since my Reviewers charge me with using only authors who wrote during the heat of the controversy. Nevertheless I had occasion to quote from Dr. Hoskier in my book.
I will now read the verdict which Dr. Hoskier passes on the Codex Vaticanus:
"That B is guilty of laches, of a tendency to 'improve' and of 'sunstroke' amounting to doctrinal bias. That the maligned Textus Receptus served in large measure as the base which B tampered with and changed, and that the Church at large recognized all this until the year 1881, when Hortism in other words Alexandrianism was allowed free play, and has not since retraced the path to sound traditions." "Codex B and Its Allies," Part I, p. 465. (Emphasis mine)
7. With regard to the corruptions of these two manuscripts, Dean Burgon says:
"(1) The impurity of the Texts exhibited by Codices B and Aleph is not a matter of opinion, but a matter of fact. These are two of the least trustworthy documents in existence... Codices B and Aleph are, demonstrably nothing else but specimens of the depraved class thus characterized. Next:
(2) We assert that, so manifest are the disfigurements jointly and exclusively exhibited by Codices B and Aleph that instead of accepting these codices as the 'independent' witnesses to the impaired original, we are constrained to regard them as little more than a single reproduction of one and the same scandalously corrupt and (comparatively) late copy." "Revision Revised," pp. 315-318.
Corrupted by Papists
It seems incomprehensible to me that my Reviewers would claim that I failed to show that these manuscripts were corrupted by the papists. Evidently they did not read my first chapter in which I clearly presented the leading names in the founding of the mystery of iniquity, namely Justin Martyr, Tatian, Clement of Alexandria and Origen. (See also History of the Sabbath by Andrews and Conradi, pp. 347, 370). I clearly showed that these all were corruptors of manuscripts. If you do not think this is so, kindly read over again Chapter one of my book. And since Origen was one of them, and I have clearly proved that these two manuscripts are corrupted and that they are of the Eusebio-Origen school; then what other conclusion is possible but that these two manuscripts were corrupted by the papists?
Moreover, later in the book I showed how the Vulgate was corrupted. I will now add another testimony from an author whom I often quoted in my book, Dr. Jacobus, to show that Jerome was a chronic corruptor of manuscripts. And surely he was a papist as were Eusebius and Origen, Dr. Jacobus says:
"Jerome was an earnest Christian, but at the same time a polemical theologian, with strong opinions as to the interpretation of prophetic passages; and he allowed his polemics and his prejudices to warp his translation in a way that Catholics frankly admit." "Roman Catholic and Protestant Bibles Compared." p. 42.
"Now some of those may be simply blunders, but not all; and to say that these are 'serious defects' is less than truth! They betoken a willingness to tamper with the text." Ibid. Appendix, Note 200.
Jerome wrote a letter to Marcella from Rome 348 A.D. (Letter XXVII in which he defends himself against the charge of having altered the text of Scripture, as follows:
"After I had written my former letter, containing a few remarks on some Hebrew words, a report suddenly reached me that certain contemptible creatures were deliberately assailing me with the charge that I had endeavered to correct passages in the gospels, against the authority of the ancients and the opinion of the whole world.... I am not, I repeat, so ignorant as to suppose that any of the Lord's words is either in need of correction or is not divinely inspired; but the Latin manuscripts of the Scriptures are proved to be faulty by the variations which all of them exhibit, and my object has been to restore them to the form of the Greek original." "Post Nicene Fathers," Second Series, Vol. VI, pp.43,44. (Emphasis mine.)
It will also be recalled here, that I set forth in one or two places in my book that. Helvidius, the famous scholar of Northern Italy, accused Jerome to his face of using corrupted Greek manuscripts. Of Jerome, the article on his name in the McClintock and Strong's Encyclopedia says:
"Easily offended vanity", "a fanatical apologist of monkish extravagances", "romanizing", pride, often concealed under the "garb of humility" and "anti chiliastic" that is against the millenium as we believe it.
A final note from Philip Mauro on this same point will show that there are others who believe that those manuscripts, and the Vaticanus in particular, are cherished by the papacy for their corruptions:
"It is easy to understand why this particular MS (Vaticanus) is cherished at the Vatican; for its corruptions are what make it of value to the leaders of the papal system. We can conceive therefore the satisfaction of those leaders that their highly prized manuscript has been allowed to play the leading part in the revision of the English Bible, than which there is nothing on earth they have more reason to fear. On the other hand, may not this be one of the causes why God, in his over-ruling providence, has frustrated the attempt to displace the AV by a new version based upon such a sandy foundation?" "Which Version?" Note, p. 50.
On the other hand there are other authorities who believe that the reason why those two beautiful Codices have been preserved, was that, because of their corruptions, they have not been worn out by use.
All Adventist ministers have preached upon Dan. 7:25 about that power which would change the law of God, and glory in changing it. If this power would change the very heart of the Bible, do you think they would hesitate to change anything else in the bible, which they wished to change?
Westcott and Hort Theory
In view of what we have said concerning the corruptions of these manuscripts, one may wonder how it came about that they were put over and made the basis of the Revised Version. Find the explanation of how Darwin put over his theory of evolution and this will answer the question. For Dr. Salmon points out that Dr. Hort stands related to the new science of textual criticism in much the same way that Darwin stood related to the theory of evolution. Westcott and Hort did not collect Manuscripts. Indeed, they had no experience in either collecting or collating; they simply furnished the theory, which they made dominant in the Revision Committee, chosen after Oxford University had been captured by the Jesuits. And let us not forget that Oxford University Press with Cambridge, paid the bill occasioned by the Revision. As Dr. Kenyon says:
"Westcott and Hort did not themselves collate or edit manuscripts, but devoted themselves to the study of the materials collected by others, and to the elaboration of a theory... Briefly, this theory is a revival of Griesbach's classification of all textual authorities into families." "Criticism of the N.T.", p. 294.
Dean Burgon so effectually exposed the wickedness of Dr. Hort's theory that he virtually killed the Revised Version in England.
Dr. Scrivener concurred with Dean Burgon. Of the theory of Westcott and Hort, he says:
(1) "There is little hope for the stability of their imposing structure, if its foundations have been laid on the sandy ground of ingenious conjecture. And, since barely the smallest vestige of historical evidence has ever been alleged in support of the views of these accomplished Editors, their teaching must either be received as intuitively true, or dismissed from our consideration as precarious, and even visionary." Scrivener, "Introduction", Vol. 11, p. 295.
There could be no severer arraignment of the theory of Westcott and Hort, the theory upon which their Revised Version is based. Note that Dr. Scrivener says, "It must be accepted as intuitively true," (that is without any evidence or proof,) or else dismissed as "precarious or even visionary."
(2) "Dr. Hort's system, therefore, is entirely destitute of historical foundation." Ibid. Vol. II, p. 291.
(3) "We are compelled to repeat as emphatically as ever our strong conviction that the hypothesis to whose proof he has devoted so many laborious years, is destitute not only of historical foundation but of all probability resulting from the internal goodness of the Text which its adoption would Force upon us." Ibid. p. 296
(4) "'We cannot doubt' (says Dr. Hort) 'that it (Luke 23:24) comes from an extraneous source.' (Hort, notes-page 68:) nor can we on our part doubt that the system which entails such consequences is hoplessly self-condemned." Idem, p.358
Dr. Kenyon, always a follower of Westcott and Hort, is one of the latest to attempt to defend their theory. But an examination of Kenyon's pages (Textual Criticism, pp. 320-333), reveals that to do so he must appeal to classical (pagan) and to other irrelevant sources. Then feeling the weakness of this illogical analogy he falls back on Hort's fantastic imaginary and unhistorical recensions, which Scrivener and others surely denounced.
My Reviewers charge me with using writers who lived during the heat of the controversy. Do Luther and Wesley or Lincoln and Douglass lose any of their value because they wrote during the heat of the controversy? I used some of the very latest writers in my book. I will now present to you eight outstanding textual critics whose testimony, given as late as January, 1921 declares that the Westcott and Hort Greek Text is a failure. These men are Danday, Field, Kirsopp Lake, Julicher, J. Rendell Harris, Eberhard Nestle, Bernard Weiss, E.D. Burton, and Rudolph Knopf. A resume of these opinions is given in their "Bibliotheca Sacra", January, 1921, a volume I referred to in my book along with others. Here are two quotations from this volume:
"Another Scheme devised by Dr. Hort to justify his abbreviated text was to put forward the Vatican Codex B as the purest text, and nearest to the original autographs. This preference has been condemned by later critics." "Bibliotheca Sacra", Jan. 1921, p. 33.
"All of his (Dr. Hort's) positions have been attacked, if not taken, and the mistakes of Hort's Greek text are transmitted in the Canterbury revision (English Revised), which is thus so far discredited." Ibid. p.36.
Dr. Philip Schaff
A final word in answer to the charge of my Reviewers that I failed to show that Aleph and B were corrupted by the papists. I wish to call attention to the fact that Dr. Schaff, President of both Old Testament and New Testament American Revision Committees, was completely subservient to the Westcott and Hort Textual theory. He chose the members of both the Old Testament and New Testament American Revision Committees; he drew up the rules which guided them; in fact, he was the life and soul of what was done here in America. I simply recall to you again that chapter in my book which my Reviewers completely ignored, but which proved conclusively that Dr. Schaff's convictions, teachings, and writings and the whole logic of his work was Romanizing. Or as one writer puts it
"Our examination has extended only to a little beyond the middle of Dr. Schaff's work (i.e. his History of the Apostolic Church). But the positions he has already advanced, are such as to lay the whole truth and grace of God, and the whole liberty, hope, and salvation of the human race, at the feet of the Roman Papacy." "The New Brunswick Review," Aug. 1854, p. 325.
I think that I proved to the satisfaction of all that the Vaticanus and Sinaiticus were corrupted, and were corrupted by the papists.
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