Problems With The Septuagint Logic For “Scholars”

Posted: October 25, 2013 in King James Only Debate, Septuagint Problems
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Most liberal scholars contend that the NT relied partly on several quotes taken from the LXX/Septuagint. James White, Nestle & Aland, Doug Kutilek, Daniel Wallace, et al, all agree with this assertion.

I strongly disagree that the Septuagint was used by any of the NT apostles or Christ, and was taken from Origan’s 5 Column of the Hexapla in 245 AD, and there are numerous NT quotes that show that Christ quoted from a Hebrew OT, not Greek (Matt 7:12, 11:13, 22:40, 23:35, Luke 24:27,44*). However, I believe for those that do agree with the notion that the NT writers quoted the LXX are faced with 2 problems:

1. Does this mean that they believe the LXX to be inspired? Scholars emphatically claim that only the “originals” are inspired, but it is obvious that if the stories surrounding the LXX were true, and it was really a 4th century –2nd century BC translation concocted by Aristeas, then it clearly is not part of the original Hebrew, which means that for the NT writers to claim that all Scripture in the NT are authoritative that made OT quotes based on the LXX would have to necessarily claim inspiration for the LXX. Otherwise, the apostles and Christ Himself could be accused of calling something Scripture that was not given by inspiration of God.

2. The second problem this presents is that these ‘scholars’ emphatically claiming that only the originals are inspired, but not translations, are faced with a blatant contradiction. If the LXX was a translation from Hebrew to Greek, and quoted by the Apostles and Christ in the NT, not only must they hold the LXX to be inspired, but they must also abandon their argument that a translation can not be inspired because by default, if the LXX is inspired, then it naturally follows that since it is itself a translation, that translations can be inspired.

So either scholars must abandon their arguments against the KJV that translations can not be inspired, or they must admit that the LXX is not authoritative and was in fact NOT used by any of the NT writers, or quoted by Jesus.


*The LXX was not divided in the manner in which the Hebrew OT was with the divisions of the Law, Prophets and Writings. These quotes from Christ show clearly that He never quoted from the Septuagint, but from the Hebrew. In Matthew 23:35, Christ makes reference to the Pharisees being guilty of the blood of Abel to Zacharias. In a Hebrew Bible, 2 Chronicles is the last book (where Zacharias is located. 2 Chronicles 24). Thus Christ is quoting this story in the order given in a Hebrew Bible, not a Septuagint.

  1. I strongly disagree that the King James Version (KJV) was used by the Apostle Paul, or by the Apostles Andrew, John, Peter, James, Jude, Matthew, Mark, or Luke, or any Apostle of Christ, 30 AD. They had the Greek Septuagint Bible, OT in Greek translated from the Hebrew around 190 BC, or so, and they possibly even had a copy of the original Hebrew OT, which has been lost to us, As far as can be told, the original Hebrew text does not exist, but has been corrupted and falsified due to the unbelief of most or many of the Jews of the Old Covenant. The Jewish rabbis who translated the Hebrew OT into Greek, however, were blessed by God, and they were faithful Jewish saints looking forward to Christ, the Messiah.

    • drjamesa says:

      First of all, who said that Paul used the KJV? I never stated something that would be an obvious anachronism.
      Secondly, in light of what I just wrote, where’s your proof that they “had the Greek Septuagint”? There is NO evidence, only speculation, of any Septuagint writings before Origan’s Hexapla.
      Thirdly, the “original” OT was long gone to the apostles and Christ. None of them quoted from any “originals”. When Jesus quoted from Isaiah 61 in Luke 4, He was quoting from a COPY of a copy of a copy that was 600 years old, and He called it SCRIPTURE. He didn’t say it was a “reliable copy” or a “dynamic equivalent”, He said “this day is this SCRIPTURE fulfilled”.
      Fourth, you last statement makes absolutely no sense. It was the scribes responsible for copying the texts that helped deliver up Christ to be crucified, but that didn’t mean they didn’t take the copying of the Hebrew Scriptures seriously. But I do agree that many of the manuscripts have been corrupted (Alexandrinus and Vaticanus), just not the ones underlying the KJV. And yes, I get that some ignorant KJVO critic will attempt to argue that the KJV borrowed ‘variants’ which is not only an argument they can’t prove, but does not face the objections that KJVO have against the manuscripts. We don’t claim that there are not a FEW correct readings in the variants, because if you mixed in nothing but lies, they couldn’t be passed off as “Bible” manuscripts. The critics, however, believe that the small handful of corrupt manuscripts that all disagree with each other, are better and more reliable than the majority that have survived for thousands of years, and of which can also be compared to the writings of early church leaders matching the Majority and TR readings.
      Fifthly, when God wants to preserve a text and cause a translation, He doesn’t need the “originals”. In fact, in Matthew 4, Jesus quoted a passage from Deuteronomy 8 that had a phrase that was not in the Hebrew. Likewise when the KJV translators translated 1 John 2:23, they had no manuscript support for the italics (almost the entire verse), yet later evidence was found that shows the KJV translators got it right WITHOUT A MANUSCRIPT TO RELY ON.

      So you and any other Bible critic can say God doesn’t preserve His word if you want to, but there’s too many miraculous details about the KJV to pass off as coincidence.

  2. willjkinney says:

    Early testimony to the non-use of a LXX translation.

    From “The Fictitious Use of the So Called Greek Septuagint”

    John Owen (1616-1683) is a well known Puritan theologian, pastor and prolific Bible commentator. He was a man who loved the Lord Jesus Christ and His Book. If you ever try to wade through any of his theological writings, you will immediately be impressed by his extraordinary scholarship and attention to detail. He knew his Bible.

    Here is an online site that contains most of his writings.

    In his massive exposition of Hebrews, John Owen makes some interesting observations regarding the relationship of the book of Hebrews to the LXX. He was well schooled in Greek, Hebrew, Latin, and Syriac. He possessed a vast knowledge of manuscripts and other translations. In his work on the book of Hebrews, Owen discusses each passage in great detail about the Hebrew and Greek, along with comments about the LXX translations done by Aquila, Theodotian, and Symmachus. (These last three men mentioned each attempted a Greek translation of the O.T. after the N.T. was already completed. Today, there is little left of their writings, but we know that they all three differed from each other.)

    In his commentary, John Owen makes this amazing statement: “It is evident that they are exceedingly mistaken who affirm that the apostle cites all his testimonies out of the translation of the LXX, as we intimated is by some pleaded… Should he [Paul] have had any respect unto that translation [LXX], it were impossible to give any tolerable account whence he should so much differ from it almost in every quotation, as is plain that he doth… And thus, in those testimonies where there is a real variation from the Hebrew original, THE APOSTLE TOOK NOT HIS WORDS FROM THE TRANSLATION OF THE LXX, BUT HIS WORDS WERE AFTERWARDS INSERTED INTO THAT TRANSLATION… Whereas the reasons of the apostle for his application of the testimonies used by him in his words and expressions are evident, as shall in particular be made to appear, so no reason can be assigned why the LXX – IF ANY SUCH LXX THERE WERE – who translated the Old Testament, or any other translators of it, should so render the words of the Hebrew text.” Exposition Of Hebrews, Vol I, Exercitation V. (CAPS are mine)

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