|THE PRINCIPLE UNDERLYING THE QUOTATIONS FROM THE OLD TESTAMENT IN THE NEW. Appendix 107 To The Companion Bible.|
It is a fact that in quotations from the Old Testament the Greek text sometimes differs from the Hebrew.
The difficulties found in connection with this subject arise from our thinking and speaking only of the human agent as the writer, instead of having regard to the fact that the Word of God is the record of the words which He Himself employed when He spoke "at sundry times and in divers manners" (Hebrews 1:1, see Appendix 95); and from not remembering (or believing) that "holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost" (2Peter 1:21, and compare Matthew 15:4. Mark 12:36. Acts 1:16; 3:18; 28:25. Hebrews 3:7; 9:8; 10:15).
If we believe that throughout the Scriptures we have the words of God, and not of man, all difficulties vanish. The difficulties are created by first assuming that we are dealing with merely human documents, and then denying the Divine Speaker and Author the right that is claimed by every human writer for himself.
It thus seems that man may take any liberty he chooses in quoting, adapting, or repeating in a varied form his own previously written words; but that he denies the Divine Author of Holy Scripture the right to deal in the same manner with His own words. This is the cause of all the so-called "discrepancies" and "difficulties" arising from man's ignorance. The Holy Spirit, in referring to words which He has before caused to be written in connection with the special circumstances of each particular case, frequently refers to them again in relation to different circumstances and other cases. He could have employed other words had He chosen to do so; but it has pleased Him to repeat His own words, introducing them in different connections, with other applications, and in new senses.
All these things are done, and words are even sometimes changed, in order to bring out some new truth for our learning. This is lost upon us when we charge upon God our own ignorance, and the supposed infirmities of human agencies.
One great source of such difficulties is our failure to note the difference between what is said to be "spoken", and what is said to be "written". If we introduce the latter assumption when the former is definitely stated, we at once create our own "discrepancy". True, by a figure of speech we can say that an author has said a certain thing when he has written it; but we may not say that he spoke it when he distinctly says that he wrote it, or vice versa. Some prophecies were spoken and not written; some were written but not spoken; while others were both spoken and written.
There is, surely, all the difference in the world between to rhethen = that which was spoken, and ho gegraptai = that which standeth written. If we deliberately substitute the one for the other, of course there is a discrepancy; but it is of our own creating. This at once disposes of two of the greatest and most serious of so-called discrepancies, Matthew 2:23, and 27:9 (see Appendix 161). One other consideration will help us when the quotations are prophecies. Prophecies are the utterances of Jehovah; and Jehovah is He Who was, and is, and is to come—the Eternal. His words therefore partake of His attributes, and may often have a past and present as well as a future reference and fulfillment (See Appendix 103); and (1) a prophecy may refer to the then present circumstance under which it was spoken; (2) it may have a further and subsequent reference to some great crisis, which does not exhaust it; and (3) it may require a final reference, which shall be the consummation, and which shall fill it full, and thus be said to fulfill it.
Certain prophecies may therefore have a preterite reference, as well as a future fulfillment; but these are too often separated, and the part is put for the whole, one truth being used to upset another truth, to the contempt of Divine utterance, and to the destruction of brotherly love.
The principles underlying the New Testament quotations were fully set out by SOLOMON GLASSIUS (A.D. 1623) in his great work (written in Latin) entitled, Philologia Sacra, chapter on "Gnomes"; and, as this has never been improved upon, we follow it here.
The notes on the New Testament passages must be consulted for further information, for example Luke 4:18 (II. 1, below). I. As to their INTERNAL form: that is to say, the sense, as distinct from the words:—
1. Where the sense originally intended by the Holy Spirit is preserved, though the words may vary.Matthew 1:23 (Isaiah 7:13, 14), "spoken", see above. Matthew 2:6 (Micah 5:2); 3:3 (Isaiah 40:3); 11:10¹ (Malachi 3:1); 12:17 (Isaiah 42:1-4); 13:14, 15S (Isaiah 6:9, 10); 21:16S (Psalm 8:2); 21:42S (Psalm 118:22, 23); 22:44S (Psalm 110:1); 26:31 (Zechariah 13:7); 27:35S (Psalm 22:18); Mark 15:28 (Isaiah 53:12). Luke 4:18, 21 (Isaiah 61:1, 2). John 19:37 (Zechariah 12:10); Acts 3:22, 23S (Deuteronomy 18:15-19); 13:33S (Psalm 2:7); 15:16, 17 (Amos 9:11, 12). Romans 14:11 (Isaiah 45:23); 15:3S (Psalm 69:9); 15:12S (Isaiah 11:1, 10). Ephesians 4:8 (Psalm 68:18). Hebrews 1:8, 9S (Psalm 45:6, 7); 1:10-13S (Psalm 102:25); 5:6 and 7:17, 21 (Psalm 110:4); 10:5, 6S (Psalm 40:6-9. See below, II. 3. a). 1Peter 2:6S (Isaiah 28:16).
¹ And the parallel passages in the other Gospels, which can be easily found.
S This denotes that it agrees with the Septuagint Version in these cases, and not with the Hebrew. With (S*) it denotes that it is nearly, but not exactly, the same.
H This denotes that it agrees with the Hebrew, but not with the Septuagint Version.
² This was "spoken", not written, and is therefore not a quotation. See Appendix 161.
2. Where the original sense is modified, and used with a new and different application.
Matthew 12:40 (Jonah 1:17). John 3:14, 15 (Numbers 21:8, 9); 19:36 (Exodus 12:46). Ephesians 5:31, 32 (Genesis 2:23, 24).
3. Where the sense is ACCOMMODATED, being different from its first use, and is adapted to quite a different event or circumstance.Matthew 2:15H (Hosea 11:1); 2:17, 18 (Jeremiah 31:15); 8:17H (Isaiah 53:4); 13:35, "spoken" (Psalm 78:2); 15:8, 9 (Isaiah 29:13); 27:9, 10.2 Acts 13:40, 41S (Habakkuk 1:5). Romans 9:27, 28S* (Isaiah 10:22, 23); 9:29S (Isaiah 1:9); 10:6S, 7, 8S (Deuteronomy 30:12-14). 1Corinthians 1:19, 20 (Isaiah 29:14; 33:18); 10:6 (Exodus 32:6-25). Revelation 1:7 (Zechariah 12:10); 1:17 (Isaiah 41:4); 11:4 (Zechariah 4:3, 11, 14). II. As to their EXTERNAL form: that is to say, the words, as distinct from the sense.
1. Where the words are from the Hebrew text or Septuagint Version.Matthew 12:7 (Hosea 6:6); 22:32H (Exodus 3:6); Mark 12:26H (Exodus 3:6); 11:17H (Isaiah 56:17. Jeremiah 7:11). Luke 4:18. (Isaiah 61:1, 2-).
2. Where the words are varied by omission, addition, or transposition.Matthew 4:10 (Deuteronomy 6:13; 10:20); 4:15, 16 (Isaiah 9:1, 2); 5:31 (Deuteronomy 24:1); 5:38 (Exodus 21:24. Leviticus 24:20); 12:18-21 (Isaiah 42:1-4); 19:5S (Genesis 2:24); 22:24 (Deuteronomy 25:5, 6). Romans 11:3, 4 (1Kings 19:10, 14, 18). 1Corinthians 2:9 (Isaiah 64:4); 14:21 (Isaiah 28:11, 12). 1Peter 1:24, 25 (Isaiah 40:6-8).
3. Where the words are changed, by a various reading, or by an inference, or in Number, Person, Mood, or Tense.The necessity for this is constantly experienced today in adapting a quotation for any special purpose beyond its original intention. It is no less authoritative as Scripture, nor does it alter the Word of God.
(a) By a different reading.
Hebrews 10:5S (Psalm 40:6; see the notes in both passages).
(b) By an inference.
Matthew 2:6 (Micah 5:2). See notes. Acts 7:43 (Amos 5:25-27). Romans 9:27S (Isaiah 10:22); 9:29 (Isaiah 1:9); 9:33 (Isaiah 28:16); Ephesians 4:8 (Psalm 68:18).
(c) In Number.
Matthew 4:7 (Deuteronomy 6:16), Romans 4:7 (Psalm 32:1); Romans 10:15 (Isaiah 52:7).
4. Where two or more citations are combined. Composite quotations.This is a common practice in all literature.
PLATO (429-347 B.C.), Ion, page 538, connects two lines from HOMER (about 850 B.C.), one from Iliad, xi. 1. 638, and the other from 1. 630.
XENOPHON (430-357 B.C.) Memorabilia, Bk. I, chapter 2, § 58, gives as one quotation two passages from Homer (Iliad, ii. 188, etc., and 198, etc.).
LUCIAN (A.D. 160), in his Charon, § 22, combines five lines together from HOMER from different passages (Iliad, ix. 319, 320; and Odyssey, x. 521, and xi. 539).
PLUTARCH (about A.D. 46), in his Progress in Virtue, combines in one sentence Homer (Odyssey, vi. 187, and xxiv. 402).
CICERO (106-43 B.C.), De Oratore, Bk. II. § 80, combines in two lines parts of Terence's lines (Andria, 115, 116, Parry's Edn.).
PHILO (20 B.C.–A.D. 40), in Who is the Heir of Divine Things (§ 5), quotes, as one address of Moses, parts of two others (Numbers 11:13 and 22). In the same treatise (§ 46) he combines parts of Genesis 17:19 and 18:14.
Illustrations could be given from English authors.
Man may make a mistake in doing this, but not so the Holy Spirit.
In Matthew 21:5, Isaiah 62:11 is combined with Zechariah 9:9.
In Matthew 21:13, Isaiah 56:7 is combined with Jeremiah 7:11.
In Mark 1:2, 3, Malachi 3:1 is combined with Isaiah 40:3.
In Luke 1:16, 17, Malachi 4:5, 6 is combined with 3:1.
In Luke 3:4, 5, Malachi 3:1 is combined with Isaiah 40:3.
In Acts 1:20, Psalm 69:25 is combined with 109:8.
In Romans 3:10-12, Ecclesiastes 7:20 is combined with Psalm 14:2, 3 and 53:2, 3.
In Romans 3:13-18, Psalm 5:9 is combined with Isaiah 59:7, 8 and Psalm 36:1.
In Romans 9:33, Isaiah 28:16 is combined with 8:14.
In Romans 11:26, 27S, Isaiah 59:20, 21 is combined with 27:9.
In 1Corinthians 15:54-56, Isaiah 25:8 is combined with Hosea 13:14.
In 2Corinthians 6:16, Leviticus 26:11, 12 is combined with Ezekiel 37:27.
In Galatians 3:8, Genesis 12:3 is combined with 18:18.
In 1Peter 2:7, 8, Psalm 118:22 is combined with Isaiah 8:14.
5. Where quotations are made from secular writers.See the notes on Acts 17:22, 23, and 28. 1Corinthians 15:33. Colossians 2:21. Titus 1:12.