Purpose:

The Paroikos Bible Blog exists as a resource to those interested in Biblical studies and Koine Greek. It is hoped that this blog will simultaneously provide food-for-thought to the reader while pointing him or her in the direction of valuable resources, both in print and on the internet, that will further help his or her studies in the Word.

Apr 15, 2019

The KJV-Parallel Bible resource: A Hearty Endorsement

I am pleased to announce the completion of the KJV Parallel Bible project by Logos scholar Mark Ward. The website can be found here, and I am putting it up as a permanent link on my sidebar for this blog, in addition to sharing it with all my students. Check it out!

The resource, in a nutshell, is the complete side-by-side comparison of the King James Version with what the KJV would look like if it were based on the Nestle-Aland critical text.

Thus all students, pastors, and laymen and laywomen can see for themselves what difference the differences make. This is a remarkable and highly useful resource for those of all textual views. I would agree with Mark that what stands out from this project is how much both sides actually agree rather than disagree (check out 1 Corinthians 15, for example: there is no difference until verse 20!!). 

Now, I speak as a broadly-based "Byzantine" text guy (which, I would argue, includes the TR as a "branch"; thus I generally prefer the TR over any critical Greek edition of the NT); however, I would also remind any KJV-only advocates that claiming that the critical text omits doctrine is a double-edged sword: please examine, for example, John 1:18 (the critical text clearly says Jesus is God!) and Acts 4:25 (the KJV omits the Holy Spirit). Now in both cases I actually prefer the Byzantine reading (which is the same as the KJV reading), but my point is that it is circular reasoning to accuse the critical text of "heresy" while ignoring such passages where the critical text contains something the KJV omits.

Ultimately, the Gospel is still the Gospel in both the critical text and the KJV (once again, check out 1 Corinthians 15). In fact, I would suggest that the devil, when attempting to harm the Christian faith, makes less headway with ancient scribes and copiers than he does with cults like the JW. For example, the heresy in the New World Translation's John 1:1 is not the result of textual variants, but of a theologically-oriented faulty translation meant to reflect JW christology (for those who can read Greek: read through the entire chapter and note the inconsistency of the NWT when translating an anarthrous theos).

Anyways, back to my endorsement. Mark Ward and those who helped him deserve our hearty congratulations for this awesome resource, a resource that IMO stands as a testament to the incredible divine preservation of God's Word.


Mar 31, 2019

When do Lament (and protest?) go too far? When do they become accusation?

During my time at Southeastern I had the privilege of taking a 1-credit doctoral module called "Biblical Lament" with Old Testament scholar Heath Thomas (now at Oklahoma Baptist University). This class revolutionized how I thought about biblical lament (to be truthful, I had never really thought about biblical lament before), and I require all my Hermeneutics students at BCM to read an article by Thomas on this topic. My main take-a-ways from that study is that lament is misunderstood (and thus underutilized)  in the church, and lament is biblical when entered in via faith. In other words, in the midst of suffering, when I cry out to God for deliverance and/or justice, I do so in faith, believing that He actually hears me. I must, however, be content with the answer (or lack of answer) He gives, trusting ultimately in His goodness.

Yesterday I returned from Chicago, having attended (and presented) at the regional ETS meeting at Moody Bible Institute. The third plenary address dealt with "A Christian Liturgical Response to Religious Trauma" and had some practical material in it. I am grateful to the presenter for her expertise. However, the session did raise some questions about methodology and Scriptural-centeredness, which leads me to attempt to address some practical and theological questions.

[To be clear, this is not meant to be a critique or engagement with the presenter; that is not the purpose of this blog, and I am not informed enough of the topic of religious trauma or even counseling in general to be able to contribute significantly to the discussion]

To begin with, I affirm once again that lament (and, to a certain degree, cautiously defined, protest) is biblical (e.g., multiple Psalms, even the occasional Psalm that doesn't end on a happy note, such as Psalm 88; the words of Job; Jesus' cry on the cross, quoting Psalm 22; the martyrs of Revelation 6:10).

Yet throughout Scripture, proper Lament seems to have at its heart the profession that God is good and just. For example, the martyrs in Revelation 6:10 cry out, "How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge . . ." That confession of God's good character seems to be at the heart of biblical lament. "God, I know you are good, so why do the wicked still reign?" Even Psalm 88:11, the darkest psalm, affirms God's chessed [KJV: "lovingkindness"; ESV: "steadfast love"] and his "faithfulness" in the midst of its protest.

Consequently, I feel that lament and protest have crossed a line when they become accusatory: "God, are you really good?" Frankly, I'm not always sure what the line is (the Psalms are more complicated than we would like!), but the fact that there is a line that should not be crossed does seem to be indicated by the ending of Job. While God does affirm Job's righteousness, and certainly his moral superiority over his loud-mouthed friends, nonetheless God does "get in Job's face" a little bit, rebuking him. 

Consider Job 40:2 [which stands in stark contrast to Rev 6:11], "Should the one quarreling with the Almighty correct him? Let the one arguing against God answer Him!" [my translation] The Hebrew word ריב is a fairly common word, often referring to what we call "quarreling" or "fighting" in English (e.g., Genesis 26:20, 31:36). The word translated "arguing" here [יכח] is a bit more complicated, often having a more positive meaning ("decide"; e.g., Gen 24:14), but also often having the negative connotation of opposition (e.g., Gen 31:42, where both the KJV and ESV translate it as "rebuke").

Nonetheless, the Lord obviously feels Job has crossed a line, because Job has become one who "quarrels" with God or "rebukes" God. To quarrel with somebody or to rebuke somebody is to question their integrity. You don't "rebuke" somebody you feel is in the right!

In other words, with no intent of being irreverent, it is one thing to say, "God, you are just and holy, so why is this happening?" and an altogether different thing to say "God, you're a jerk!" We have every right to ask God questions and appeal to His goodness in the face of a world that is obviously not conformed to His goodness. We also have the right to assert our uprightness in the face of unfair attacks, when appropriate (as Job did). However, we have absolutely no right to call God to face trial or to suggest that He has become our enemy, which I feel is where Job begins to cross the line (see especially Job 19, which bears some significant similarities to Naomi's foolish statements in Ruth 1:13, 20-21).

Lament and protest are biblical, but only when infused with faith in the ultimate goodness and power of God. I'd like to see a bit more discussion of the point at where lament becomes accusation, especially when we begin to incorporate it into our liturgy ["liturgy" is here broadly defined: I am, after all, a Baptist!]. Church should be a place where we can weep and honestly ask God why something is happening, but Church must also consistently be the place where God's virtues are proclaimed ( 1 Peter 2:9), not where accusations are brought against Him. Church must always declare that no matter how corrupt the world and society are, no matter how tragic or unfair my circumstances are, God's goodness endures forever.

Feb 28, 2019

Teaching "Translation Issues in Hebrew": Postscript

In our brand-new MA in Bible Translation here at Baptist Theological Seminary, we currently have three students, two gentlemen and one lady. Last Friday was the culmination of the class "Translation Issues in Greek and Hebrew" (co-taught by my father and I), and the three students presented papers on: 
1. Translating Exodus into Mandarin Chinese, 
2. Translating the Psalms into Amharic, and 
3. Translating OT Prophetic Oracle into Fulfulde. 
An excellent job by all of them, with PowerPoint presentations that blew me away! [I would like to mention their names, but there's a chance one or all of them might end up ministering in restricted-access nations, so I will not].

Earlier I had blogged about the "Search for a textbook" for the Hebrew portion of this class. I ended up going with Dr. Ernst Wendland's book Analyzing the Psalms: With Exercises for Bible Students and Translators, 2nd ed., partly because it is one of the few books out there that actually deals with translating Hebrew into a non-English language. I did, however, require a lot of outside reading, including a fascinating essay by Dr. Lamin Sanneh on the social-religious role of Bible translations in Africa.

Reproduced below is a significant portion of our syllabus, with all the required reading (for both my father's and my portions of the class) and the description of the essay the students had to write about translating Hebrew into the various languages (each student was required to choose a non-English language).

Course Description:
 LI 631 Translation Issues in Greek and Hebrew (2 hours)
A study of specific issues particular to the translation of Greek and Hebrew Scriptures, especially addressing syntactic and semantic difficulties. 
Prerequisites: AL 202 and/or satisfactory performance on the Advanced Greek Entrance Exam, AL 522 and/or satisfactory performance on the Elements of Hebrew Entrance Exam; seminary Greek courses are strongly recommended.

Objectives for the Course:
(1) To learn the difficulties inherent in translating the Hebrew and koine Greek languages.
(2) To develop a solid understanding of lexical semantics, not just in relation to Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic, but also in relation to foreign languages.
(3) To understand the complexities of transferring syntax and discourse structure from the original biblical languages into a target language.
(4) To develop a personal methodology that will assist in translating from the Bible in its original languages into a foreign language.
(5) To grapple with the role of genre and discourse in Bible translation.
(6) To understand the practicaldifferences between a generally “optimal equivalence” and “essentially literal” approach and a generally “functional equivalence” approach, developing a preference for the former while understanding that sometimes the line gets blurred.

Textbooks and Reading
The student should own the following three books:
1.Constantine R. Campbell, Advances in the Study of Greek. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2015, 207 pp.
2.Wendland, Ernst R.  Analyzing the Psalms, with Exercises for Bible Students and Translators, 2nded. Dallas, TX: SIL International, 2002, 256 pp.
3.Any grammar of a foreign language of the student’s choice (a language that is not native to the      student).

In addition, the student will read the following articles and essays and come ready to discuss them in class when they’re due (digital or physical copies will be provided to the student).
1. Martin Luther, “An Open Letter on Translating,” pages 1-13 (up until the line break).
2. David G. Horrell, “Familiar Friend or Alien Stranger? On Translating the Bible,” Expository Timesvol. 116.12 (2005): 402-408.
3. Paul A. Himes, “Rethinking the Translation of Διδακτικός in 1 Timothy 3.2 and 2 Timothy 2.24,” The Bible Translatorvol. 68.2 (2017): 189-208.
4. Maurice Robinson, “The Bondage of the Word: Copyright and the Bible” (available from the professors). ETS 48thAnnual Meeting, 1996.
5. J. Scott Horrell, “Translating ‘Son Of God’ For Muslim Contexts, Part 1: Tensions And The Witness of Scripture,” BibSacvol. 172.687 (October-December 2015).
6. J. Scott Horrell, “Translating ‘Son Of God’ For Muslim Contexts, Part 2: Historical and Theological Concerns,” BibSacvol. 172.687 (July-September 2015).
7. John Travis, “Producing and Using Meaningful Translations of the Taurat, Zabur, and Injil,” International Journal of Frontier Missionsvol. 23.2 (Summer 2006).
8. Kenneth J. Thomas, “Allah in Translations of the Bible,” International Journal of Frontier Missionsvol. 23:2 (Winter 2006).
9. Lamin Sanneh, “Domesticating the Transcendent, the African Transformation of Christianity: Comparative Reflections on Ethnicity and Religious Mobilization in Africa,” pages 70-85 in Bible Translation on the Threshold of the Twenty-First Century, eds. Athalya Brenner and Jan Willem van Henten, The Library of Old Testament Studies (London: T. & T. Clark, 2002).
10. John Rogerson, “Can a Translation of the Bible Be Authoritative?” and Judith Frishman, “Why a Translation of the Bible Can’t Be Authoritative: A Response to John Rogerson,” pages 17-30 and 31-35 in Bible Translation on the Threshold of the Twenty-First Century.
11. Everett Fox, “The Translation of Elijah: Issues and Challenges,” and A. J. C. 
Verheij, “A Response to Everett Fox,” pages 156-169 and 170-174, in Bible Translation on the Threshold of the Twenty-First Century.
12. Philip A. Noss, “Translation to the Third and Fourth Generations: The Gbaya Bible and Gbaya Language Enrichment,” The Bible Translator69.2 (2018): 166-75.
13. Robert L. Hubbard, “The Hebrew Root PG‘as a Legal Term,” Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society27.2 (June 1984): 129-33.
14. Lénart J. de Regt, “Sacrificial and Festival Terms in the Old Testament: How Can We Translate Them?” The Bible Translator 68.2 (August 2017): 131-141. [Sadly, I was not able to acquire a PDF of this particular article in time to have the students actually read it].
15. Alexandr Flek, “Between Lying and Blaspheming: Czech Bible21 as a Contemporary Attempt at Communicative Equivalence,” pages 124-130 in Yearbook on the Science of Bible Translation: 13thBible Translation Forum 2017, ed. Eberhard Werner (Nürnberg, Germany: VTR, 2018).

OT Translation Project
Each student will be assigned a chapter from the Old Testament. The student will study that chapter in Hebrew and write an essay on translation issues in that chapter, utilizing the grammar of the non-English language that they chose earlier. The goal of this essay is to provide an introductory discussion on how the Old Testament passage might be rendered into their non-English target language. To be clear, the student does notneed to actually provide a translation (though occasionally the student might need to supply a gloss for a word in his or her target language), but simply a discussion of the issues (lexical, syntactical, and stylistic/discourse) that such a translation would face.
1.Each student will be assigned a chapter from the Hebrew Old Testament.
2.Each student will choose a non-English target language and gain a basic familiarity with that language via the grammar that they chose and purchased before class began.
3.The essay will begin with an opening paragraph discussing the genre of their passage.
4.The next paragraph will provide a basic overview of their target language and the basic characteristics of that language.
5.The remainder of the essay will discuss, verse-by-verse, the issues that the translator will confront when attempting to render the Hebrew into the target language.
6.No minimum or maximum page limits exist for the paper. The professor (P. Himes) reserves the right to have the student rewrite the paper if it bears the marks of “hurried work.”
7.Sources: all types of sources are “fair game” (i.e., the student is not limited to 
academic sources). The student is encouraged to utilize any helpful internet sources that directly deal with his or her target language. While there is no minimum or maximum requirement for sources, the use of the following sources is strongly encouraged:
a. Hebrew grammars and Hebrew syntaxes.
b. Technical commentaries on the Old Testament (esp. Word Biblical).
c. Bible translations in English, butlimited to the following: KJV, ESV, NIV.
d. Any Bible translation in your target language, but only after you have spent some time studying the chapter in Hebrew on your own. 
e. Any resource, written or digital, published or online, that deals with your target 
language.
f. Any lexicons and concordances for either Hebrew or the target language, including online lexicons and concordances.
g. The student may even consult“google translate” or similar software, though the 
student should not rely on it. I.e., the basis of your analysis should not be  translation software; however, translation software such as “google translate” 
(which has improved considerably in the past decade!) may be consulted after 
the majority of your work on a particular verse has been done.
8.Citation: throughout the paper, the student should simply refer to their sources 
parenthetically, in as simple a form as possible. E.g., for a commentary: (Smith, 42); for a lexicon or dictionary: (Ringgren, TDOT, 50); for a grammar or syntax: 
(Suleski/Hiroko, 50). Even websites should be cited simply with the title of the 
website, e.g., (Jisho). At the end of the paper, the student will provide a comprehensive Works Cited page(s) that will include all publication information, including URLs for websites.
9.Formatting should, in general, follow standard BTS format (with the exception of parenthetical citation instead of footnotes). The title of the paper should be something along the lines of “Translation Issues when Rendering [Hebrew passage] into [Target Language].”
10.You are not trying to proveanything with this paper. You are simply introducing the reader to the various issues of translating your passage into your target language.
11.Paper presentation:sometime during the 9-week block, all students will present their findings orally. Both the undergraduate and graduate student body will be invited to attend (as well as BCM faculty and staff). Each student should plan on about 10 minutes of presentation, followed by 5 minutes open to Q&A. The date will be set by mutual agreement with the professor and students. The students are encouraged to utilize PowerPoint or other visual aids or audio aids.
                  
*Sample discussion of a verse*
by P. Himes, on translating Psalm 2:1 into Japanese:
1.This verse in Hebrew has a simple chiasm: “Verb-Subject-waw-Subject-Verb” (though not a perfect chiasm, since the second half contains a d.o.). Sadly, it is virtually impossible, here and elsewhere, to render this structure into Japanese without creating an awkward translation. Certainly it would not sound very “poetic”!
2.The Hebrew רגשׁ is a hapax legomena, thus necessitating reliance on lexicons. 
Holladay has “be restless,” but most versions seem to translate it with more negative connotations, e.g., “rage” (KJV, ESV) and “conspire” (NIV). Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament(via Accordance) has “conspire, plot,” more-or-less agreeing with the NIV. In light of the parallelism here with the second half of the verse, I’m inclined to favor the idea of “conspire.” Two good Japanese possibilities exist, I believe. I would suggest takurami, since that word seems to have more negative, sinister connotations in Japanese than hakaru.
3.One is forced here to discuss the nature of style and tone. Since Japanese, merely by its verb endings, can radically alter the tone and style (superior to subordinate, subordinate to superior, equals, enemy to enemy, etc.), deciding what sort of style to use is of more importance in Japanese than, for example, in English. I would recommend a “lower,” more colloquial style here, since the Psalmist is more-or-less sneering at those who oppose God. The tone of the whole Psalm is one of mockery of those who have the audacity to think they can oppose God, and this should, to a certain degree, dictate the style in Japanese.

Feb 8, 2019

Form Contributes to Meaning (Meaning is not simply the sum total of words)

The rise of discourse analysis in the past couple decades has been a great boon to biblical studies. The point is now being hammered home consistently: it is not enough to simply study words and sentences; rather, to truly grasp the entirety of meaning in Scripture, one must also study larger units of meaning, "discourse units," and how they interact with each other (e.g., how one "paragraph" leads into the other, etc.).

On the one hand, to borrow from Steve Runge's excellent work A Discourse Grammar of the Greek New Testament, discourse  affects "pragmatic meaning"--compare, for example, the different nuances between "Guess what our kid did today" vs. "Guess what your kid did today," in a conversation between husband and wife. Nothing has technically changed in regards to the overall meaning of the sentence, but the use of the 2nd person singular pronoun, a deviation from the norm here, hints at something ominous!

Even more than that, however, the arrangement of a simple waw conjunction in Hebrew can change how one should interpret a sentence. Consider Joshua chapter 4, specifically verse 9: "And Joshua set up twelve stones in the midst of Jordan . . ." (KJV). With most English translations, this raises problems: is this a second set of stones or did Joshua simply take the initial pile of stones and put them back in the river? Considering the fact that the middle of a river which would, soon, overflow its banks again would be a horrible place for a memorial, and considering the fact that chapter 4 focuses on "the place where they lodged" (v. 8) as the place of the memorial, verse 9 almost seems like a contradiction.

An understanding of Hebrew discourse here solves the issue and potentially offers up a new spiritual insight. 

To begin with, OT scholars universally acknowledge the waw-yiqtol (or waw-consecutive) syntactical construction as the indicator of past sequential action, i.e., the backbone of historical narrative ("Then Paul got into his car, then Paul drove it to the store, then Paul bought ice cream . . .").

Significantly, then, when the conjunction waw begins a clause attached to any other word but the imperfect (or, if you prefer, "preterite"--the identity of the specific conjugation is debated), then this often signifies the disruption of the sequential narrative, often for the purpose of providing background information (drawing from Runge again, kind of like the gar in Greek). 

For example: 
"Then Paul started [waw-yiqtol] his car, 
then Paul drove [waw-yiqtol] to the store, 
then Paul browsed [waw-yiqtol] the ice cream isle 
(now Paul had been hungry [disjunctive waw] for ice cream for quite a while), 
then Paul purchased [waw-yiqtol] ice cream . . ." etc. etc.

In Joshua 4, then, verse 8 has a heavy dose of waw-yiqtol verbs to carry it along--the actions of verse 8 are sequential. However, not so with verse 9a, which begins with a waw attached to the word for "two" followed by "ten" (i.e., "12"). In other words, the first part of verse 9 is most likely providing background information to what is going on: "Now Joshua had set up stones . . ." The waw-yiqtol pattern, i.e., the main story, resumes at the end of verse 9, "and they are there unto this day." The "there" (Hebrew sham) at the end of verse 9 links back to the very last word of verse 8, also "there" (sham).

Thus, in English, ". . . and carried them over with them unto the place where they lodged, and laid them down there (now Joshua had set up twelve stones . . .), and they are there [same place as verse 8] unto this day." 
[Note that, predictably, verse 10 does not start with the waw-yiqtol pattern] 

In other words, Joshua did not set up a second pile (what would be the point of having a memorial in the midst of a major river that would presumably soon be flowing again?), nor did he move a pile already set up as a memorial (v. 8). Rather, Joshua was responsible for getting the stones together, setting them near the priests, and thus facilitating the task of the twelve men he picked out. In other words, Joshua does not just give orders, he enables them! He engages in the task in such a way as to facilitate those who would carry them out. 

The lesson is this: anybody wishing to search for specific and precise spiritual lessons from Hebrew historical narrative, i.e., a significant portion of the Old Testament, had better study Hebrew discourse!










Dec 20, 2018

Teaching a Directed Study on the Septuagint

I have the privilege of doing a one-on-one directed study on the Septuagint with one of our seminary students here at BTS. I'm obviously not a Septuagint scholar nor a specialist (though I have contributed two published academic pieces on the NT use of the LXX, including an article in BBR) Consequently, this is somewhat of a learning experience for me as well.

Obviously the starting point is Septuaginta: A Reader's Edition, and the entire world of biblical academia owes Gregory Lanier and William Ross a debt of gratitude for their hard work on this! I required my student to purchase that, as well as the classic work by Jobes and Silva, Invitation to the Septuagint, 2nd ed., as well as Jennifer Dines' The Septuagint. In addition, I just acquired a copy of Takamitsu Muraoka's incredible achievement, A Syntax of Septuagint Greek, and I will be making it available to my student (for obvious reasons he doesn't have to buy it; it's not cheap!)

From there I have given him a ton of outside reading from other sources, some quizzes, one test, and two major projects. This is a directed study, so not how I would handle a regular class. With that in mind, here's what my syllabus looks like:
[Please dont mind the formatting; its tough to copy and paste directly from a Word doc. to a blog and still retain the formatting]
[Also: Im interested in feedback, especially if Ive missed some must-readEnglish sources].

Introduction to the Septuagint (OT 745)


Theme Scripture: LXX Isaiah 53:5—αὐτὸς δὲ ἐτραυματίσθη διὰ τὰς ἀνομίας ἡμῶν καὶ μεμαλάκισται διὰ τὰς ἁμαρτίας ἡμῶν.παιδεία εἰρήνης ἡμῶν ἐπ᾽αὐτόν, τῷ μώλωπι αὐτοῦ ἡμεῖς ἰάθημεν.
                                                                                                
A. Description: “An introduction to the Septuagint with emphasis on its social and theological significance and how it compares with the Masoretic text. The course addresses the origins of the LXX, its use by the NT writers, translation technique and theology in the LXX when compared to the MT, its theological significance for modern Christians, and its use in textual criticism.”
*Prerequisites: AL511 (“Introduction to New Testament Exegesis”) and AL632 (“Principles of Hebrew Exegesis”). Septuagint OT 745 should be considered an advanced M.Div. OT elective or, alternatively, a Th.M. class.

B.  Course objectives. Having taken this class, the student should be able to competently:
1. Explain the basic facts about the existence of the Septuagint.
2. Read and translate the Septuagint (with appropriate helps).
3. Analyze the Septuagint theologically and linguistically in comparison to the Hebrew Masoreti
text and New Testament citations (with, at a minimum, an awareness of the Dead Sea Scrolls).
4. Grapple honestly with the theological significance of both the existence and the preservation of
the Septuagint.
5. Discuss key New Testament citations that utilize the Septuagint when it differs from the MT, 
offering a reasonable rationale (when possible) for why the inspired NT author did this.
6. Know the major works that have contributed to modern scholarship on the Septuagint, and those areas where work still needs to be done.

C. Required textbooks 
1. Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition, eds. Gregory R. Lanier and William A. Ross 
(Peabody, MS: Hendrickson, 2018).
2. Karen H. Jobes and Moisés Silva, Invitation to the Septuagint, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2015).
3. Jennifer M. Dines, The Septuagint, Understanding the Bible and Its World (London: T&T Clark, 2004).
*There will be a significant amount of reading from other books and articles, but the 
above three books are those that the student should personally own.
*Digital formats for all books are acceptable.
*Throughout the class the student will be required to utilize T. Muraoka, A Syntax of 
Septuagint Greek (Leuven, Belgium: Peeters, 2016).

D. Grading
1. LXX translation quizzes (5%)
2. LXX and MT comparative analysis quizzes (5%)
3. LXX overview exam (5%)
4. Reading (15%)
*Total reading is approx. 1,090 pages plus 17 chapters of reading in the LXX 
(with one of those chapters read side-by-side with the Hebrew), plus portions of 
five letters between Augustine and Jerome.
5. Project 1: Textual and Translation Analysis (30%)
6. Project 2: Theology of the NT Use of the LXX (30%)
7. Memorization (3%)
8. Participation (5%)
9. Guest lecture in the professor’s Spring class “Elements of Hebrew Syntax” on “The Septuagint: What it is and why it matters.” (2%) [If this lecture does not work out, grading will be recalculated accordingly]. 

E. Class progression and projects: The class is divided into four “phases” revolving around four meetings between student and teacher. Each phase will focus on specific aspects of Septuagint research and knowledge, and each phase will contain its own cluster of requirements.

Meeting 1
This meeting will focus on the expectations of the class, the required projects, and the basic facts about the Septuagint and its significance. In addition, the professor and student will together spend some time reading and analyzing select LXX texts (initially, we will focus strictly on the Greek, not yet on the Hebrew). The professor will at this point make sure the student is up to speed on some developments in the study of Koine Greek, especially verbal aspect theory and deponency, and will discuss how this may or may not be relevant for the study of the LXX. Finally, the professor will provide the student with a study guide for the sole exam in this class.

Phase 1: Introduction
This phase is meant to introduce the student to the basic facts about the LXX and its importance. The student will familiarize himself with the Septuagint by reading it in the Greek. The reading will introduce the student to the basic issues surrounding the LXX and its significance for the early church.

Assignments for Phase 1
1. Jobes and Silva, Invitation to the Septuagint, 2nd ed., in its entirety (approx. 380 pages).
2. Genesis 1–3 and Psalms 1–2 in the Septuaginta: A Reader’s Edition.
3. The exchange between Augustine and Jerome:
a. Augustine, Letter 28 (to Jerome), chapter 2.
b. Augustine, Letter 71 (to Jerome), chapters 2–3.
c. Jerome, Letter 72 (to Augustine), chapter 3.
d. Jerome, Letter 75 (to Augustine), chapter 1 (part 1) and chapters 6–7.
e. Augustine, Letter 82 (to Jerome), chapter 5.
4. Timothy E. Miller, “An Evangelical Apology for the Septuagint,” Detroit Baptist Seminary Journalvol. 22 (2017): 35–55.
5. David A. deSilva, “Five Papyrus Fragments of Greek Exodus,” Bulletin of the International Organization for Septuagint and Cognate Studies(BIOSCS) vol. 40 (2007): 1–29.

6. Karen Jobes and Moisés Silva, “Response to James Barr’s Review of Invitation to the Septuagint,” BIOSCS vol. 35 (2002): 43–46.
7. Karen H. Jobes, “When God Spoke Greek: The Place of the Greek Bible in Evangelical Scholarship,” Bulletin for Biblical Researchvol. 16.2 (2006): 219–236. 
8. W. Edward Glenny, “The Septuagint and Biblical Theology,” Themeliosvol. 41.2 (August 2016): 263–278.

Meeting 2
During this meeting, the student and professor will discuss the material read during phase 1, as well as the various issues involved in the study of the LXX. The professor and student will spend more time reading and discussing passages from the LXX together, this time with reference to the Hebrew text. 

Phase 2: Reading, translating, and appreciating the LXX
During this phase, the student should spend a significant amount of time reading and analyzing the LXX Greek text, gain a solid understanding of the history of the LXX, its key manuscripts, and the key figures involved in its reception, begin to grapple with LXX lexicography, and develop a working knowledge of the Apocrypha and its significance for NT studies.

Assignments for Phase 2:
1. Read all of Dines, The Septuagint(approx. 150 pages).
2. Read LXX Genesis 4–10.
3. Take three quizzes (proctored) on basic LXX translation and syntactical analysis. The student will be allowed to use Muraoka’s Syntax of Septuagint Greekand oneNT syntax of his or her choice.
4. Take an exam covering the basic facts of the LXX (any time before meeting #3). No helps allowed. A study guide will be provided during “Meeting 1.”
5. Harold P. Scanlin, “Charles Thomson: Philadelphia Patriot and Bible Translator,” BIOSCS vol. 39 (2006):115–132.
6. Chapter 4, “Staying Jewish: Language and Identity in the Greek Bible,” from Tessa Rajak, Translation and Survival: The Greek Bible of the Ancient Jewish Diaspora(20 pages).
7. Jan Joosten, “Varieties of Greek in the Septuagint and the New Testament,” pages 22–45 in The New Cambridge History of the Bible: From the Beginnings to 600, eds. James Carleton Paget and Joachim Schaper (Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, 2013).
8. Cameron Boyd–Taylor, “Lexicography and Interlanguage—Gaining our Bearings,” BIOSCS vol. 37 (2004): 55–62.
9. Martha L. Wade, “Evaluating Lexical Consistency in the Old Greek Bible,” BIOSCSvol. 33 (2000): 53–75.
10. John A. L. Lee, “Ἀποσκεγη in the Septuagint,” Journal of Theological Studies
vol. 23.2 (Oct 1972): 430–437.
11. Dirk Büchner, “A Cultic Term (ἁμαρτία) in the Septuagint: Its Meaning and Use from the Third Century B.C.E. until the New Testament,” BIOSCSvol. 42 (2009).
12. Takamitsu Muraoka, “How to Analyse and Translate the Idiomatic Phrase 
יִתֵּן מִי,” BIOSCS vol. 33 (2000): 47–52.
13. Jonathan T. Pennington, “‘Heaven’ and ‘Heavens’ in the LXX: Exploring the Relationship between שָׁמַיִםand οὐρανός,” BIOSCSvol. 36 (2003): 39–59.
14. David Lincicum, “The Epigraphic Habit and the Biblical Text: Inscriptions as a Source for the Study of the Greek Bible,” BIOSCSvol. 41 (2008): 84–92.

Meeting 3
During this meeting, the professor and student will discuss the material read during “phase 2” and the methodology for cross-textual analysis. The professor and student will put this into practice by analyzing together various texts in both their Greek and Hebrew forms, discussing such matters as translator style and faithfulness (or lack thereof) to the source text, anomalies in how the LXX might differ from the Hebrew, possibilities of a different Vorlage, etc. In the process, the professor and student will discuss Hebrew vs. Greek syntax, and how the former might be appropriately rendered into the latter. Finally, the professor and student will begin to discuss the significance of NT use of the OT when such usage is clearly LXX.

Phase 3Cross-textual analysis
At this point, the student should begin to gain competency in analyzing the Greek side-by-side with the Hebrew MT and begin to develop a methodology for analyzing NT use of the LXX including possible NT interaction with the Apocrypha.

Assignments for Phase 3:
1. Read LXX Genesis 11–15. The LXX of Genesis 15 should be read in conjunction with the Hebrew MT.
2. Three quizzes on cross textual analysis between the LXX and the MT. The student should utilize Muraoka’sSyntax, one Hebrew syntax of his choice, and one Greek syntax of his choice.
3. Anssi Voitila, “Some Remarks on the Perfect Indicative in the Septuagint,” BIOSCSvol. 26 (1993): 11–16.
4. David Cleaver–Bartholomew, “One Text, Two Interpretations: Habakkuk OG and MT Compared,” BIOSCSvol. 42 (2009): 52–67.
5. P. J. Williams, “The LXX of 1 Chronicles 5:1–2 as an Exposition of Genesis 48–49,” Tyndale Bulletinvol. 49.2 (1998): 369–71.
6. Deborah Levine Gera, “Translating Hebrew Poetry into Greek Poetry,” BIOSCSvol. 40 (2007): 107–120.
7. Arie van der Kooij, “A Short Commentary on Some Verses of the Old Greek of Isaiah 23,” BIOSCSvol. 15 (1982): 36–50.
8. Nicholas Peterson, “An Analysis of Two Early LXX Manuscripts from Qumran: 4QLXXNum and 4QLXXLeva in the Light of Previous Studies,” Bulletin for Biblical Research vol. 19.4 (2009): 481–510.
9. Chapter 2, “Identifying a Source as Greek or Hebrew,” in R. Timothy McLay, The Use of the Septuagint in New Testament Research(40 pages).
10. Paul A. Himes, “Why Did Peter Change the Septuagint? A Reexamination of the 
Significance of the Use of Τίθημιin 1 Peter 2:6,” Bulletin for Biblical Research 
vol. 26.2(2016): 71–111.
11. Jonathan A. Linebaugh, “Announcing the Human: Rethinking the Relationship Between Wisdom of Solomon 13–15 and Romans 1.18–2.11,” New Testament Studies vol. 57 (2011):  214–237.
12. Paul A. Himes, “Wisdom and the Sojourning Saints or Christ and the Wandering Sinners? The Wilderness Wandering Motif in Hebrews as a Reaction to Wisdom of Solomon,” pages 227–249 in Getting into the Text: New Testament Essays in Honor of David Alan Black, eds. Daniel L. Akin and Thomas W. Hudgins (Eugene, OR: Pickwick, 2017).
13. Edmon L. Gallagher, “Augustine on the Hebrew Bible,” The Journal of Theological Studiesvol. 67.1 (April 2016): 97–114.
14. Matthew Flannagan, “Feticide, The Masoretic Text, and the Septuagint,” Westminster Theological Journal vol. 74.1 (Spring 2012): 59–84.
15. Paul D. Wegner, “Current Trends in Old Testament Textual Criticism,” Bulletin for Biblical Researchvol. 23.4 (2013): 461–480.
16. Martin Rösel, “The Text-Critical Value of Septuagint-Genesis,” BIOSCSvol. 31 (1998): 62–70.
17. William A. Ross, “Text-Critical Question Begging in Nahum 1,2–8: Re-evaluating the Evidence and Arguments,” Zeitschrift für die alttestamentliche Wissenschaft vol. 127.3 (2015): 459–74.
18. Albert Pietersma, “Septuagint Research: A Plea for a Return to Basic Issues,” Vetus Testamentumvol. 35.3 (July 1985): 296–311.

Meeting 4
During this meeting, the professor and student will chart a path for “Project A” and “Project B,” paying special attention to the theological relevance of the LXX both for the NT era and for today. The professor will encourage the student towards a balanced perspective on the LXX that avoids the two extremes of ignoring it on the one hand (or, even worse, denying its existence) and replacing the Hebrew with it as the authoritative OT text on the other hand. Finally, the professor and student will discuss the relevance (if any) of the LXX for textual criticism of the Old Testament. If there is time, the professor and student will discuss the professor’s own LXX-related projects.

Assignments for Phase 4:
1. “Project A”: A thorough textual and translation analysis of a significant portion of the LXX in comparison with the Hebrew. [A chapter from one of the minor prophets]
2. “Project B”: The development of a coherent “theology of the Septuagint” that appropriately grapples with its role in Hebrew History, its use by NT authors, and its relevance for today, all fitting within a strong independent Baptist perspective on inerrancy.
*The student is encouraged to consult with the professor and/or provide updates in the process of working on these two projects.

Guidelines for the two projects
A. Textual and syntactical analysis of an LXX passage.
1. The student will choose one chapter from one of the minor prophets that contains a NT citation (a citation that is most likely from the LXX instead of the MT, or at least a citation that could have been either). The student is free to use Archer and 
Chirichigno’s Old Testament Quotations in the New(or any other secondary sources) 
as a guide for finding a suitable chapter.
2. The point of this paper is to provide a full-scale analysis of the LXX as compared to the MT.
3. After an introductory overview of this particular book of “The Twelve” in LXX form (appropriately citing the major scholarly sources), the student will go verse-by-verse, commentary-style, and analyze the LXX in relation to the Hebrew (full Hebrew and Greek text should be provided for each verse in the paper). The student is seeking to answer the following questions:
 a. Does the LXX translation exhibit any unique characteristics?
 b. Are there any lexical or syntactical oddities? If so, would such an oddity be 
 best explained via translator style, theological interpretation, a different 
 Vorlage, or some combination of the above?
 c. Does the LXX translator exhibit any unique perspectives compared to the MT, 
 especially theological perspectives? In other words, would a sermon from the 
 LXX preach differently than a sermon from the MT?
 4. The student will pay close attention to any passage(s) cited by a New Testament 
 author, seeking to answer the following questions:
 a. Why did the NT author cite the LXX instead of the MT? The simple answer 
 may be “because it was the translation his audience was using”; however, the 
 student should be open to more complicated explanations, as well.
 b. What role does this verse play in the NT author’s theology?
 c. Does the NT author seem to be drawing from the broader context of the LXX 
 verse under discussion?
 5. The conclusion will focus on general observations that the student feels he can make about the passage, including any areas that are unresolved and need further study.
6. There is no minimum or maximum page limit. The student is expected to take as long as necessary to provide a solid analysis.
7. There is no specific required number of sources. However, the student will be expected to utilize both LXX and Hebrew syntaxes as well as the best critical commentaries (especially those that discuss the LXX). In addition, the student should evidence awareness of key articles, monographs, or dissertations which discuss this particular chapter. In other words, grading will depend less on the number of sources and more on whether or not the student has evidenced knowledge of the most important sources for this kind of work.
8. Generally speaking, the student should follow BTS formatting and guidelines for this paper. When laying out the text of Greek and Hebrew for a particular verse, however, the student should make sure they are side-by-side, either using a “Table” in MS Word or using two columns via an “insert section” option.
9. The student is strongly encouraged to use Unicode front for Greek and Hebrew (e.g., Tyndale or SBL), in order to ensure that the fonts will show up properly when the project is sent as a MS Word document to the professor.

B. The Theological Significance of the LXX
1. The student will write an essay discussing the theological significance of the LXX for Christianity in both the 1st and the 21st centuries AD.
2. The student will do his best to explain how the NT writers approached the 
LXX, being careful not to generalize but also looking for any broad trends.
3. In the process, the student will analyze the following passages and explain why, in 
each case, the NT author (or speaker) went with the LXX over the MT (if he did), and 
why it matters:
a. Isaiah 42:1–4 in Matthew 12:18–21
b. Genesis 11:12–13 cited in Luke 3:36.
c. Habakkuk 2:4 cited in Romans 1:17.
d. Psalm 2:9, cited in Revelation 2:27.
e. Psalm 96:7 [MT 97:7] in Hebrews 1:6.
f. Amos 9:12 in Acts 15:17 (part of a longer quotation).
4. The student will then discuss the significance of the LXX for today (21st century), 
including any relevance it might have for pastoral and missions work.
5. There is no page limit, over or under. The student should simply ensure that he has 
adequately dealt with the topic.
6. There is no minimum number of required sources. However, the student should 
make sure he or she interacts with key articles (e.g., Glenny, “Septuagint and Biblical Theology”) and monographs (e.g., Law, When God Spoke Greek) that discuss the theological significanceof the Septuagint. When discussing the NT citations of the OT, the student should plan on consulting the top two or three commentaries for each citation, both on the side of the NT and on the side of the OT.


Bibliography: Some relevant English books for Septuagint study
*In addition to the books listed below, the student should be aware of 
(1.) “The Septuagint Commentary” series (not completed yet). The series so far has 13 books out (both canonical and non-canonical LXX). E.g., W. Edward Glenny, 
Micah: A Commentary based on Micah in Codex Vaticanus. The series is published 
by Brill (and thus, unfortunately, prohibitively expensive!).
(2.) The Göttingen Septuagintaseries (published by Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht), an ongoing project which is probably the most important source for any study of the 
Septuagint that involves textual criticism. The series is approximately 2/3 complete.

1. Brotzman, Ellis R., and Eric J. Tully. Old Testament Textual Criticism: A Practical Introduction2nded. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2016.
2. Carson, D. A., and G. K. Beale. Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old TestamentGrand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2007.
3. Chamberlain, Gary Alan. The Greek of the Septuagint: A Supplemental Lexicon. Peabody, MS: Hendrickson, 2011.
4. Conybeare, F. C., and St. George Stock. Grammar of Septuagint Greek: With Selected Readings, Vocabularies, and Updated Indexes. Reprint. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2001.
5.Dines, Jennifer M. The Septuagint. Understanding the Bible and Its World. London: T&T Clark, 2004.
6. Evans, T. V. Verbal Syntax in the Greek Pentateuch. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2001.
7. Hatch, Edwin, and Henry A. Redpath. A Concordance to the Septuagint and the Other Greek Versions of the Old Testament. 2nded. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 1998.
8. Hengel, Martin. The Septuagint as Christian Scripture: Its Prehistory and the Problem of Its Canon. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2004.
9. Hiebert, Robert J. V., ed. “Translation Is Required”: The Septuagint in Retrospect and ProspectSBL Septuagint and Cognate Studies 56. Atlanta: SBL, 2010.
10. Jellicoe, Sidney. The Septuagint and Modern Study. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1968.
11. Jobes, Karen H., eds. Discovering the Septuagint: A Guided Reader. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel, 2016.
12. Jobes, Karen H., and Moisés Silva. Invitation to the Septuagint, 2nded. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2015.
13. Law, Timothy Michael. When God Spoke Greek: The Septuagint and the Making of the Christian Bible. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013.
14. Lee, J. A. L. A Lexical Study of the Septuagint Version of the Pentateuch. SBL Septuagint and Cognate Studies. Chico, CA: Scholars, 1983.
15. Longenecker, Richard N. Biblical Exegesis of the Apostolic Period. 2nded. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1999.
16. Marcos, Natalio Fernández. The Septuagint in Context: Introduction to the Greek Version of the Bible. Trans. Wilfred G. E. Watson. Atlanta, SBL: 2009.
17. McLay, R. Timothy.  The Use of the Septuagint in New Testament Research. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2003.
18. Muraoka, T. A Syntax of Septuagint Greek. Leuven, Belgium: Peeters, 2016.
19. Muraoka, T. A Greek-English Lexicon of the Septuagint. Leuven, Belgium: Peeters, 2009.
20. Muraoka, T. A Greek-Hebrew/Aramaic Two-way Index to the Septuagint. Leuven, Belgium: Peeters, 2010.
21. Olofsson, S. God Is My Rock: A Study of Translation Technique and Theological Exegesis in the Septuagint. Coniectanea Biblical Old Testament 31. Stockholm: Amqvist & Wiksell, 1990.
22. Rajak, Tessa. Translation and Survival: The Greek Bible of the Ancient Jewish DiasporaOxford: Oxford University Press, 2011.
23. Swete, H. B. An Introduction to the Old Testament in Greek. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1914.
24. Taylor, Bernard, ed. Analytical Lexicon to the Septuagint. Peabody, MS: Hendrickson, 2009.
25. Thackeray, Henry St. John. A Grammar of the Old Testament in Greek. Vol. 1: Introduction, Orthography and Accidence. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1909. Note that Thackeray only completed the first volume.

26. Tov, Emanuel. The Text-Critical Use of the Septuagint in Biblical Research. Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2015.