The Fraudulent Codex Sinaiticus Defended By the James White Cult

Dr. James A., PhD

One of the most damning pieces of evidence against the Codex Sinaiticus is the evidence of its usage of anachronistic etymology that proves it is NOT a 4th or 5th century manuscript as contended by modern Bible “scholars”, but rather a modern forgery written by Constantine Simonides. James White, who defends the Sinaiticus, has never addressed this issue (not even in the debate with Chris Pinto where the White Cult claims victory because Pinto didn’t answer questions to their satisfaction that had nothing to do with the arguments Pinto raised in Tares Among the Wheat. Such red herrings are a standard Whitean debate tactic), so White and his cult who point to the only time in White’s history (the Simonides controversy isn’t argued in White’s book) where the Simonides controversy was ever addressed by White, can not merely point to this “debate” with Pinto as an answer to this charge of anachronisms against the Codex Sinaiticus.

A brief introduction to this controversy is as follows. Constantine Tischendorf, who claimed to have “found” the Sinaiticus touting it as an ancient manuscript, accused Simonides of lying about an ms he’d made known as The Shepherd of Hermas prior to Tischendorf’s publication of Sinaiticus. Long story short, Tischendorf had to retract his accusation and Simonides was exonerated. However, what snagged Tischendorf when he published Sinaiticus was that an exact match of the Shepherd of Hermas was contained in the so-called Codex Sinaiticus. When Constantine published the Sinaiticus, Simonides recognized his own work and markings, and called Tischendorf out on the lie that the Codex Sinaiticus was an ancient manuscript, the earliest among any known extant mss.

Both the Shepherd of Hermas and Sinaiticus contain Greek words that were not in use during the era in which Tischendorf and his ilk claim for the age of the codices (not to mention the sheer coincidence that Codex Sinaiticus just happened to contain the two Greek copies of Hermes and Barnabas known to have been previously attributed to Simonides).

From The Forging of the Sinaiticus, William Cooper, citing Greek scholar, James Donaldson notes,

“The late origin of the Greek is indicated by the occurrence of a great number of words unknown to the classical period, but common in later or modern Greek. Such are Βουνος, συμβιοσ (as wife), με (for μετα), πρωτοκαθεδριεις, ισχυροποιω κατεπιθυμω, ασυγκρασια, καταχυμα, εξακριβαζομαι, and such like. The lateness of the Greek appears also from late forms; such as αγαθωτατης, μεθισταναι, οιδας, αφιουσι (αφινουσιν in Sim. Greek), καπεκοπταν, ενεσκιρωμενοι, επεδιδουν, ετιθουν, beside ετιθεσαν, εσκαν, λημψη, ελπιδαν, τιθω, επεριψας and ηνοιξας, ειπασα, χειραν, απλοτηταν, σαρκαν, συνιω, συνιει; and some modern Greek forms, such as κραταουσα for κρατουσα, have been corrected by the writer of the manuscript. The lateness of the Greek appears also in the absence of the optative and the frequent use of ινα after ερωταν, αξιω, αιτουμαι, εντελλομαι, αξιος, &c., generally with the subjunctive, never with the optative. We also find εαν joined with the indicative. Εις is continually used for εν, as εχουσιν τοτον εις τον πυργον. We have also παρα after comparatives, and peculiar constructions, as περιχαρης του ιδειν, σπουδαιος εις το γνοναι, απεγνωρισθαι απο. And we have a neuter plural joined with a plural verb, κτηνη ερχονται. Most, if not all, of these peculiarities now mentioned, may be found in Hellenistic writings, especially the New Testament; and some of them maybe paralleled even in classical writers. But if we consider that the portion which has now been examined is small, and that every page is filled with these peculiarities, the only conclusion to which we can come is, that the Greek is not the Greek of the at least first five centuries of the Christian era. There is no document written within that period which has half so many neo-Hellenic forms, taken page by page, as this Greek of the Pastor of Hermas.”

Cooper, Bill (2016-04-08). The Forging of Codex Sinaiticus (Kindle Locations 898-907). Kindle Edition.

To bring this down to laymen’s terms, let’s use a simple analogy. If Pope Gregory XVI (who paid Tischendorf for his endeavors, which is a little odd given that Tischendorf was supposed to be a Protestant, and Pope Gregory is notorious for burning such “heretics” in a dungeon) had written a letter claiming that he never met Tischendorf, and in that letter, said that he was drinking Pepsi when he learned about the Codex Sinaiticus for the first time, we could safely infer that this letter was not really written by the pope given that we know when Pepsi was invented. Rather, the letter would have been written by someone in recent times. The Codex Sinaiticus and Shepherd of Hermas both have “Pepsi” spilled on them (and in many places, the authors had write AROUND the “Pepsi”. More on the “wormhole” problem at a future time).

There is even far greater evidence extant that the Codex Sinaiticus is even more recent than the 5th century, but the standard paradigm that surrounds the modern version controversy rests on whether or not Codex Sinaiticus is a 4th or 5th century production. If it is not-and it isn’t-every modern version onlyist is defending a lie when they point to the so-called “oldest and best” manuscripts in support of their Westcott & Hort Onlyism defense of modern translations, and their attacks against the King James Bible.

The anachronisms contained in both the Codex Sinaiticus and Shepherd of Hermes give not only credibility to Simonides claim of authorship, but at most, prove that both manuscripts were not/are not early manuscripts as claimed by modern version onlyist “scholars”, but rather a modern hoax. The entire modern version debate builds its house of cards on the Codex Sinaiticus. With the foundation being built on a lie, every manuscript that bootstraps its relevance to the Sinaiticus falls, and thus the question James White asks in his book, The King James Only Controversy, “Can You Trust the Modern Translations?” is a resounding “absolutely NOT!”.

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Comments
  1. David Daniels of Chick Publications has done a very good 16 part video series on the fake Sinaiticus Manuscript that totals about 4 hours of viewing time. In addition to those 16 videos he has also done at least four other videos in the Sinaiticus Manuscript titled: Is Sinaiticus A Fake, Is The Origin Of Sinaiticus A Lie, KJV Sinaiticus And The NWO, and The Smoking Gun Of Sinaiticus. Get your pens out to take notes!

  2. Steven Avery says:

    Good stuff with the Donaldson material. The Greek font is omitted, I believe, on the Kindle edition of The Forging of Codex Sinaiticus. (You have the name a bit differently.).

    Additional note: James Donaldson adds the locations in Hermas in his page 309, using the footnotes:

    A Critical History of Christian Literature and Doctrine: The apostolical fathers (1864)
    James Donaldson
    https://books.google.com/books?id=tMlDAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA309

    Note, that it would be wonderful if Donaldson had the Tischendorf-discarded part of Hermas found in the New Finds, in 1975, for study.

    This material given in the blog post was also repeated in 1874 by Donaldson. Where the discussion includes more about the Tischendorf “borders on the miraculous” claims of finding the ms and includes the Barnabas issues, including the 1843 edition of Simonides.

    ===

    Request:

    Also there is a bit more on the Donaldson pages where your extract is from, see p. 311 beginning with, “The peculiarities which point out a Latin origin…” two pages forward from the url above. If you have that, with the Greek font, perhaps you can post it in a future blog post.

    ===

    Thanks!

    Steven Avery
    Asheville, NC
    https://www.facebook.com/groups/purebible/

    • James A, PhD says:

      Yes, the fonts are a little different. I also tried to balance some of this with your critique on the forum. I’m going to response to this a little more later, but yours are comments that I like to get posted as soon as see them! LOL

  3. Steven Avery says:

    And I believe there really are very few scholars in the world today who are close to the level of James Donaldson in knowledge and fluency of Greek and Latin, the early church writers and the Bible. So I do not expect to see much follow-up by the current scholars, whose papers tend to the arcane and atomistic. You never know, though, somebody could step up to the plate. It is a funny situation,

    Overall, I consider this simply a very strong corroborative evidence. We can be quite sure that Donaldson is right. And we know that if Sinaiticus has a 500s terminus post quem by linguistics, the current charade falls apart.

    One key point that Donaldson brings to the table is that the linguistics key is Hermas and Barnabas, not the Bible texts. The Bible resources of antiquity Greek text are abundant (although Hort saw Latinisms that made him think the ms. was written in Rome, a point that was quietly set aside in the scholarship circles.). However, in Hermas and Barnabas the resources were scattered, in multiple manuscripts, Greek and Latin, leading to some linguistic creativity by the skilled and quirky Simonides.

    Some of the Donaldson studies interconnect with the 1843 Epistle of Barnabas history, which is an integral part of the whole nexus that proves that Sinaiticus was an 1800s production, whether it was originally intended as a forgery or a replica edition. That Barnabas seems to be a rather integrity scholarship endeavor from Simonides with a complex and direct relationship with the Sinaiticus Barnabas which was produced a couple of years earlier.

    Beyond our Facebook discussions on PureBible and earlier on the Sinaiticus group, and whatever I get up on the PureBibleForum, you will find a lot of the James Donaldson discussion up in two spots:

    Bible Criticism and History Forum – Oct, 2014
    Sinaiticus – Hermas, Barnabas linguistic, history anomalies
    http://earlywritings.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1025

    CARM – Sept. 2017
    James Donaldson linguistic studies on the Greek Hermas and Barnabas manuscripts
    https://forums.carm.org/vb5/forum/theology/general-christian-topics/biblical-languages/4773875-james-donaldson-linguistic-studies-on-the-greek-hermas-and-barnabas-manuscripts

    Your post here was timely, because it came almost exactly when the Greek professor, Barry Hofstetter, (who posts on CARM) noticed by reading Hermas that it did not really have the flow and linguistics expected (I am paraphrasing, see the thread.) Not sure what editions are out there today, and how much they are Sinaiticus and Athos-Simonides, however, from memory, there is not much else out there that can be the base of a Greek Hermas edition today. Thus the published Greek editions can have the awkwardness of Latin undertext and Simonides pseudo-creativity, which can end up making for a tedious and repetitive read, which was essentially the Barry Hofstetter report.

    Thanks for the contributions!

    Steven Avery
    Asheville, NC
    http://www.purebibleforum.com/

    • James A, PhD says:

      One minor observation about the Latinisms is that I can’t see anyone else dedicated to Rome wanting to translate Apocryphal literature outside of their “Mother language”. In other words, it would seem more likely that a native Greek would translate from Latin to Greek rather than a monk from Rome, and thus, one more hint that Hermas and Barnabas were at least not Roman productions.

      I also agree with your assessment of the Mark ending although I haven’t read Sorenson’s book yet. I’m not sure where that argument stands if there’s a possibility that Vaticanus (with the corrections Benedict offered, whatever those were) was his exemplar because that would seem to resolve the conflict of conflating scribes. Would’ve been nice to have comments from Kallinikos and other who saw CFA specifically as it related to the Mark ending. (if there is any, I haven’t seen it yet.)

  4. Steven Avery says:

    The difficulties with the Mark ending theories are really a major problem with this group of books, papers and talks by Bill (William) Cooper, David Sorenson and Brian Shepherd at the Dean Burgon Society meeting this year. It is hard to overstate the significance of an errant claim of that nature.

    One other difficulty that can not be overstated is how often they totally mangle the manuscript colouring issues. At times they make something that is clear and simple and powerful into a complete mish-a-mosh. Caveat emptor.

    Steven

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