Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hortians examine Mark 3:32 - homoeoteleuton

 I here quote a Hortian defender named "Brandpluckt" (there seem to be two different people using the same handle) on Bible Discussion Forums.  He claims that Traditional Text defenders ignore homoeoteleuton when it occurs in the Majority Text or the Textus Receptus.

We agreed to post his example, and wonder if there are actually any more plausible cases from the Byzantine text that would qualify as probable homoeoteleuton:

"On the other hand, I wonder if KJVO advocates would be willing to admit the TR purposely removed a reference to the sisters of Jesus in Mark 3:32. The TR removed the BYZ reading “and your sisters” which is also the reading (in brackets) in the NA text.
Metzger has this comment:
“A majority of the Committee considered it probable that the words  και αι αδελφαι σου [and your sisters] were omitted from most witnesses either (a) accidentally through an oversight in transcription (the eye of the scribe passing from σου to σου), or (b) deliberately because neither in verse 31 nor verse 34 (nor in the parallel passages) are the sisters mentioned."
( - Bruce M. Metzger, Textual Commentary, 2nd Ed., 1994, p.70).
In other words the TR has h.t. in it also. I willing to wager we will never hear about that!"
Well, all we can say is, he is wrong; we are glad to post examples of homoeoteleuton  wherever they happen to occur.    Perhaps others can give examples of possible h.t. in the TR, and we will post them here and analyze them.

Of course its hard to pass over the obvious double standard the Revision Committee used when dealing with possible h.t.   In almost every case where the Variation Unit had the very same h.t. features but the fault was in the Alexandrian textual witnesses or archetype, the possibility wasn't even discussed, but instead consciously avoided! 



Update:  Johnathan Borland has posted on the Yahoo Groups TC list the following internal analysis:

Internal reasons for including KAI AI ADELFAI SOU in Mark 3:32  include:

1. Accidental omission by homoeoteleuton error (SOU...SOU).
2. Assimilation to 3:31,33,34, where mention of the sisters is absent.
3. Harmonization to Matt 12:46,[47] || Luke 8:19,20, where mention is absent.
4. No one added the words to the Byzantine addition of Matt 12:47 (possibly omitted by h.t. error), even though KAI ADELFH is present in Matt 12:50 just as in Mark 3:35.

The internal criticism of Tony Pope is indecisive since 3:31 is narrative and 3:32 records discourse. Some in the crowd could have called attention to the sisters, just as in 6:3. At least I see its presence as no more clumsy or different than TI POIEITE TOUTO in 11:3 in conjunction with TI POIEITE LUONTES TON PWLON in 11:5. Besides, if critics thought the expression were clumsy, they could have added it to 3:31 (but no one apparently did so) or simply deleted it.

Internal reasons explain the omission and merely corroborate the text as preserved in most manuscripts, including a number of comparatively ancient ones (e.g., A D; OL-a,b,d,ff2).

Jonathan C. Borland  (February 10, 2011)

1 comment:

  1. Hi Folks,

    Let us see if this post sticks !

    First on the brand name identification question.


    Zechariah 3:2
    And the LORD said unto Satan,
    The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan;
    even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee:
    is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?

    is Will Kinney:

    an AV pure word of God defender, with a number of fine articles. Here is the central station.

    Another King James Bible Believer

    The poster on BVDB, brandpluckt, seems to have chosen a similar name. For satire or mockery or foolishness or something. Those posters can be a tad bitter and difficult on that forum and are not very interested in earnest and sincere pure Bible discussion. (Textual politics against the TR and AV is the shared forum agreement of most posters and the mods.)


    Now, as for the textual question on Mark 3:32:

    Mark 3:32
    And the multitude sat about him,
    and they said unto him,
    Behold, thy mother and thy brethren without seek for thee.

    There are very compelling reasons why the skilled and learned men of the Reformation Bible (TR) -- Erasmus, Stephanus, Bezae -- considered the shorter reading, without :

    "and his sisters"

    to be the original, pure word of God. Note that this was against their common understanding of the ease of omissions occurring in the Greek manuscript line. Clearly, the first question should be, in such an instance, what is different here ? Since we know they went against the more normative approach.

    Thus I will plan on posting on this on TC-Alternate, for a fuller review.

    One point though. It is very wrong for brandpluckt to say :

    "The TR removed the BYZ reading".

    (Jonathan Borland did not make this error.) The Byzantine manuscripts are very split on the verse, as can be seen from Laparola, where both the inclusion and omission have "Byz-pt". Plus the cursives and uncials listed are also very split. So there was no removal in the sense of leaving the textline.

    As as side-note, Jonathan is, we know, not a Hortian, being generally an able defender of the Byzantine text. Even on the BVDB forum, they are not all Hortians. Often those posters are simply more concerned that the AV not be respected as the pure and perfect word of God.

    However, some, and I believer your correspondent Brandpluckt qualifies, are very much Hortians.

    All in all, thanks for bringing this variant and question to your blog. I had been wondering if there were any significant homoeoteleuton variances between the Received Text and the Byzantine manuscripts, out of the dozens of potential cases you have been documenting.

    So this is extremely helpful, we may even have the verse as the ** test case ** of distinction.

    Continuation planned on TC-Alternate.

    Steven Avery