Excerpts From New Tes­ta­ment Ori­gins” By George M. Lamsa

The Old Syr­i­ac Man­u­scripts of the Four GospelsGeorge M. Lam­sa, New Tes­ta­ment Ori­gins, chap­ter XXI

The Old Syr­i­ac” man­u­scripts of the Four Gospels known as the Sinaitic Palimpsest, dis­cov­ered by Mrs. Agnes Lewis in the Covenant of St. Cather­ine on Mount Sinai in 1892, unfor­tu­nate­ly was forged by the Monks, delib­er­ate­ly, before it was sold to Mrs. Lewis and her com­pan­ions. They made a hole in the date of the man­u­script, thus appar­ent­ly increas­ing its age by 900 years. The work actu­al­ly was fin­ished in 1599 A.D. The Eng­lish schol­ars who exam­ined it first, placed its date as of 697 A.D. Then, not being sure, they made a sec­ond inspec­tion, and assigned to it a lat­er date, at 778 A.D. Dr. Burkitt (then a young stu­dent), at the time of its dis­cov­ery, thought that the hole in the date was nat­ur­al, that is, in the skin when dat­ed. He failed to real­ize that no respon­si­ble scribe would date a man­u­script near a hole in such a way as to leave the read­er in doubt as to the exact date.

The above-men­tioned error in date recent­ly was dis­cov­ered by the writer, after exam­in­ing sev­er­al oth­er Four-Gospel man­u­scripts which were brought to Amer­i­ca from the Near East. All the own­ers of these man­u­scripts had used the same mal­prac­tice. They had made it appear from the muti­lat­ed dates that the man­u­scripts were one thou­sand years old­er than they actu­al­ly were. One of these man­u­scripts is at the Union The­o­log­i­cal Sem­i­nary in New York, anoth­er is at Har­vard, and anoth­er is in Syr­ia. Palimpsest” means dou­ble writ­ing, or one writ­ing over the oth­er. The super­writ­ing in Ara­ma­ic, on the vel­lum of the so-called Sinaitic, was the sto­ry of mar­ty­rol­o­gy. One of the sto­ries is that of San­ta Auge­nia, believed to be a Euro­pean Saint nev­er heared of in the East. The book evi­dent­ly was intro­duced by the Roman Catholic mis­sion­ar­ies after the union of the Chaldeans with the Church of Rome in the six­teenth cen­tu­ry. The work under­ly­ing the super­writ­ing is that of a stu­dent who copied the Gospels for pen­man­ship. No lay­man or priest in the East would destroy a sacred text of the Four Gospels just to write a his­to­ry of the Saints. Such an act would be con­sid­ered sac­ri­le­gious. Oth­er palimpsest texts of this nature, includ­ing the so-called Cure­ton­ian, are of late ori­gin and are not authen­tic. They were nev­er used by the Chris­t­ian of the Church of the East.

How To Ascer­tain An Orig­i­nal ? Ara­ma­ic Words Mis­trans­lat­edibid., chap­ter XXII

The fol­low­ing sam­ples will show how the trans­la­tors of the New Tes­ta­ment into Greek mis­un­der­stood some of the Ara­ma­ic words and idioms :

    raka (raca), spit­ting”, in Matthew 5:22, is left untranslated.
    orak­en hoaw beapo­he, and they spat on his face” (Mark 15:19).
    neshtvon, wor­thy”, in Matthew 18:19, is ren­dered sum­phone­sosin, con­fus­ing it with the Ara­ma­ic word metha­won, agree” (cf. Matt. 5:25)
    khaneptha, hea­then”, in Mark 7:26, is trans­lat­ed into the Greek ver­sion, elle­nis, Greeks”. The Ara­ma­ic word for Greeks” is yon­aye. The East­ern text reads as a hea­then from Syria.” 

Mis­takes of Bib­li­cal Trans­la­tionsibid., pp. 92 – 93

The fol­low­ing sam­ples will show how the trans­la­tors of the New Tes­ta­ment into Greek mis­un­der­stood some of the Ara­ma­ic words and idioms.Endmark

    mesh­tam­le­na, will be through”, in Luke 13:32, is ren­dered teleioumai, will be perfected.”
    esaor, to work” (spir­i­tu­al work), in Luke 13:33, is trans­lat­ed pporeuesthai, to walk.” The East­ern text reads, But, I must do my work today and tomorrow.”
    rokha dekhorhana, rheuma­tism”, in Luke 13:11, is ren­dered pneu­ma, spir­it.” The Ara­ma­ic text reads, Who was afflict­ed with rheuma­tism for eigh­teen years ; and was bent down and could nev­er straight­en her­self at all.”
    breh, his son”, in Luke 14:5, is ren­dered into Greek, whios, an ass.” The Ara­ma­ic text reads, His son or his ox.”
    ammey, Gen­tiles”, in John 12:20, is ren­dered ellenes, Greeks.”
    eteh damshikha, the Church of Christ”, in Acts 20:28, is changed to ekkle­sian tou theou, the Church of God.” It reads as, The Church of God, which he has pur­chased with his own blood.” The East­ern text reads, The Church of Christ which he has pur­chased with his own blood.” Dur­ing the apos­tolic age, Jesus was called Our Lord, or Christ”. The apos­tles being Semi­tes, could not have thought of God as hav­ing blood.
    rashiay, wicked”, in Romans 5:7, is ren­dered dikaiou, just man”. The Ara­ma­ic text reads, Hard­ly would any man die for the sake of the wicked ; but for the sake of the good, one might be will­ing to die.” Christ died for the sake of the wicked (Romans 5:6 – 8







One response to “Excerpts From New Tes­ta­ment Ori­gins” By George M. Lamsa”

  1. shadowofears Avatar

    It is a mis­con­fu­sion in Mus­lims espe­cial­ly that mod­ern day Chris­tians are fol­low­ers of Jesus Christ(P.B.U.H) but instead they are fol­low­ers of Paul.

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