HOLY TRINITY CELTIC ORTHODOX CHURCH
CELTIC ORTHODOX BENEDICTINE FATHERS
1703 Macomber St., Toledo, Ohio 43606
PHONE: 419.206.2190 / E-MAIL firstname.lastname@example.org
HOME PAGE: http://www.celticorthodoxchurch.com
THE ORTHODOX BIBLE IS OLDER THAN THE
JEWISH BIBLE, THE PROTESTANT BIBLE OR
THE POST VATICAN II ROMAN CATHOLIC BIBLE.
THE SEPTUAGINT TEXT OF THE OLD TESTAMENT IS
THE ONLY INSPIRED TEXT OF THE OLD TESTAMENT.
PRIOR TO VATICAN II, THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH AND HOLY
ORTHODOXY VIEWED THE SEPTUAGINT TEXT AS THE OFFICIAL
TRANSLATION OF THE OLD TESTAMENT AND THE ONLY INSPIRED
OLD TESTAMENT TEXT. WITH THE VATICAN II COUNCIL, THE ROMAN
CATHOLIC CHURCH ABANDONED THE ANCIENT TEXT AND THE
SCRIPTURES STUDIED AND PRAYED BY THE ANCIENT
CHURCH FOR THE MASORETIC TEXT WHICH IS THE TEXT USED
BY THE PROTESTANTS AND THE MODERN JEWISH RELIGION.
THE MOTIVATION WAS ECUMENISM. THE SAD REALITY IS
THE SEPTUAGINT TEXT OF THE OLD TESTAMENT REMAINS
THE ONLY INSPIRED OLD TESTAMENT TEXT.
THE SEPTUAGINT TEXT MAY BE FOUND IN THE ORTHODOX STUDY BIBLE
The earliest extant version of the Old Testament is the translation executed in Alexandria in the third century before the Christian era; this version became known as the Septuagint and more recently, the Alexandrian version.
The earliest writer who gives an account of the Septuagint version is Aristobulus, a Jewish author who lived at the commencement of the second century B.C. In his Letter of Aristeas, he explains that the version of "the Law into Greek" was completed under the reign of Ptolemy Philadelphus, and that Demetrius Phalerus had been employed about it. Since it is documented that Demetrius Phalerus died at the beginning of the reign of Ptolemy Philadelphus, it has been reasonably inferred that Aristobulus was a witness that the work of translation had been commenced under Ptolemy Soter. Ptolemy contacted the chief priest, Eleazar, in Jerusalem and asked him to send translators. Six were chosen from each of the twelve tribes of Israel, giving us the commonly accepted number of seventy-two. Only the Torah (the first five books) was translated initially, but eventually other translations (and even compositions) were added to the collection. By the time of our Lord the Septuagint was the Bible in use by most Hellenistic Jews.
When the Apostles quote the Jewish Scripture in their own writings, the overwhelmingly dominant source for their wording comes directly from the Septuagint (LXX). Given that the spread of the Gospel was most successful among the Gentiles and Hellenistic Jews, it made sense that the LXX would be the Bible for the early Church. Following in the footsteps of those first generations of Christians, the Orthodox Church continues to regard the LXX as its only canonical text of the Old Testament. There are a number of differences between the canon of the LXX and that of Roman Catholic Church and Protestant Christians, based on differences in translation tradition or doctrine.
Differences with the Catholic Bible
The Septuagint (or simply LXX) is the name commonly given in the West to the ancient, Koine Greek
version of the Hebrew Bible (often called the "Old Testament") translated in stages between the third to
first century B.C. in Alexandria. It is the oldest of several ancient translations of the Hebrew Bible into Greek. The name means "seventy" and derives from a tradition that seventy-two Jewish scholars (LXX being the nearest round number) translated the Torah from Hebrew into Greek for one of the Ptolemaic kings.
The LXX was held with great respect in ancient times; Philo and Josephus ascribed divine inspiration to its authors. It formed the basis of the Old Latin versions and is still used intact within Eastern and Western Orthodoxy. Furthermore, the LXX was also the basis for Gothic, Slavonic, old Syriac (but not the Peshitta), old Armenian, and Coptic versions of the Old Testament. Of significance for all Christians and for Bible scholars, the LXX is quoted by the Christian New Testament and by the Apostolic Fathers. While Jews have not used the LXX in worship or religious study since the second century A.D., recent scholarship has brought renewed interest in it in Judaic studies. Some of the Dead Sea Scrolls attest to Hebrew texts other than those on which the Masoretic Text was based; in many cases, these newly found texts accord with the LXX version. Also, the LXX version of some works, like Daniel and Esther are longer than the Hebrew. The oldest surviving codices of LXX date to the fourth century A.D.
The Septuagint derives its name from the Latin phrase septuaginta interpretum versio, "translation of the seventy interpreters" (hence the abbreviation LXX). The Latin title refers to an account in the Letter of Aristeas of how seventy-two Jewish scholars were asked by the Greek King of Egypt Ptolemy II Philadelphus in the third century B.C. to translate the Torah for inclusion in the Library of Alexandria. A later version of the narration by Philo of Alexandria states that although the translators were kept in separate chambers, they all produced identical versions of the text in seventy-two days.
Modern scholarship holds that the LXX, beginning with the Pentateuch, was written during the third through first centuries B.C.
The differences with the Protestant canon are based on Martin Luther's opinions about the Old Testament. His argument was that St Jerome distinguished the Hebrew Old Testament from the Greek Old Testament and that only the texts in Hebrew should be considered canonical, while the others may be good to read. When he was translating the Old Testament into German, he used the common Hebrew text available at the time, the Masoretic Text (MT), which contains a smaller canon and is based on another manuscript tradition from the LXX.
Other reformers followed suit, so the MT is thus also the basis for the Old Testament text of the 17th century Authorized Version in English (the "King James Version"). There are multiple differences between the LXX and MT. The MT lacks the following texts: I Esdras, the portion of II Esdras (which the MT simply calls "Ezra") called the "Prayer of Manasseh," Tobit, Judith, portions of Esther, Wisdom of Solomon, Wisdom of Sirach (Ecclesiasticus), Baruch, the Epistle of Jeremiah, the so-called "additions to Daniel" (The Song of the Three Children, Susanna, and Bel and the Dragon) Psalm 151 and all four Maccabees books. The Psalms are also numbered and divided up differently.
WHY YOU SHOULD USE THE SEPTUAGINT TEXT FROM THE ORTHODOX STUDY BIBLE