Archive for the ‘Barnabas’ Category

Michuta on the Apocrypha/Deuterocanonicals in the so-called Epistle of Barnabas

May 26, 2014

Gary Michuta tries to argue that the (pseudographic) Epistle of Barnabas quotes from the apocryphal/deuterocanonical book of the Wisdom of Solomon (also pseudonymous).  At pages 59-60, he writes:

The Epistle of Barnabas (ca. AD 70)

The title of this work is something of a misnomer; modern scholars do not consider The Epistle of Barnabas to have been written by the great companion of St. Paul (largely because of marked differences in viewpoint). Nevertheless, the letter is very ancient, and it was highly regarded in the early Church; so highly, in fact, that many ancient writers considered it canonical New Testament book. Its author and place of composition are unknown; it may have originated in Alexandria, Palestine, or even Syria.

Are there Deuterocanonical references in 1 Clement — in a work so highly honored in early Christianity that the famous Codex Sinaiticus included it right after the Book of Revelation? Yes. Barnabas 6:7 appears to be quoting Wisdom 2:12; as if Wisdom were part of Isaiah 3:9-10. If this identification is correct, then the intermixing of the two prophecies from Wisdom and Isaiah would strongly suggest that the author understood them both to be divine and prophetic in origin.[fn70]

FN70: The relationship between these two texts is disputed. Oesterley sees an intermingling of Ws 2:12 and Is 3:9-10 indicating that both were of equal authority. (Oesterley, Introduction, 125). Similarly, the [sic] The Ante Nicene Fathers, edited by Roberts and Donaldson (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans Publishers) acknowledges both passages. See ANF 1.140, FN. 19. Likewise, Migne, Muilenburg, Kraft, Goodspeed, Lake, and Sparks confirms this connection as does Brabban, who calls it a “loose paraphrase” (Brabban, “Use of the Apocrypha,” 358-59). Westcott (Westcott, 84), Beckwith (Roger Beckwith, The Old Testament Canon of the New Testament Church and its Background in Early Judaism (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1985), 427, FN. 208) and Norman L. Geisler and Ralph E. MacKenzie’s Roman Catholics and Evangelicals: Agreements and Differences (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1995), 161) and others dispute this connection.

Readers of this blog may recall a rebuttal of this and related errors (link to previous post).  In summary, relevant to this particular point:

The Epistle of Barnabas 6:7 states:

Forasmuch then as He was about to be manifested in the flesh and to suffer, His suffering was manifested beforehand. For the prophet saith concerning Israel; Woe unto their soul, for they have counseled evil counsel against themselves saying, Let us bind the righteous one, for he is unprofitable for us.

ἐν σαρκὶ οὖν αὐτοῦ μέλλοντος φανεροῦσθαι καὶ πάσχειν, προεφανερώθη τὸ πάθος. λέγει γὰρ ὁ προφήτης ἐπὶ τὸν Ἰσραήλ· Οὐαὶ τῇ ψυχῇ αὐτῶν, ὅτι βεβούλευνται βουλὴν πονηρὰν καθ’ ἑαυτῶν, εἰπόντες· Δήσωμεν τὸν δίκαιον, ὅτι δύσχρηστος ἡμῖν ἐστίν.

Septuagint Isaiah 3:9-10 states:

Wherefore now their glory has been brought low, and the shame of their countenance has withstood them, and they have proclaimed their sin as Sodom, and made it manifest. Woe to their soul, for they have devised an evil counsel against themselves, saying against themselves, Let us bind the just, for he is burdensome to us: therefore shall they eat the fruits of their works.

καὶ ἡ αἰσχύνη τοῦ προσώπου αὐτῶν ἀντέστη αὐτοῖς· τὴν δὲ ἁμαρτίαν αὐτῶν ὡς Σοδομων ἀνήγγειλαν καὶ ἐνεφάνισαν. οὐαὶ τῇ ψυχῇ αὐτῶν, διότι βεβούλευνται βουλὴν πονηρὰν καθ᾽ ἑαυτῶν εἰπόντες Δήσωμεν τὸν δίκαιον, ὅτι δύσχρηστος ἡμῖν ἐστιν· τοίνυν τὰ γενήματα τῶν ἔργων αὐτῶν φάγονται. 

The difference between the language of Barnabas 6:7 and the language of Septuagint Isaiah 3:9-10 is literally two letters of one word out of eighteen consecutive words. 

By contrast, Septuagint Wisdom of Solomon 2:12 states:

Therefore let us lie in wait for the righteous; because he is not for our turn, and he is clean contrary to our doings: he upbraideth us with our offending the law, and objecteth to our infamy the transgressings of our education.

ἐνεδρεύσωμεν τὸν δίκαιον, ὅτι δύσχρηστος ἡμῖν ἐστιν καὶ ἐναντιοῦται τοῖς ἔργοις ἡμῶν καὶ ὀνειδίζει ἡμῖν ἁμαρτήματα νόμου καὶ ἐπιφημίζει ἡμῖν ἁμαρτήματα παιδείας ἡμῶν·


Thus, Wisdom (probably drawing from Isaiah) does have six of the eighteen words, and these do not include the one word that slightly differs between Barnabas and LXX Isaiah.

Thus, Michuta has undersold the degree of controversy over this erroneous assertion that Barnabas is “mixing” the text of Wisdom into that of Isaiah.  The presumable basis for this error is the use of a shorter rescension of Isaiah, such as that found in the Masoretic text, in Jerome’s Vulgate, or in most English translations.

In short, it’s definitely LXX Isaiah, not Wisdom, that the author of Barnabas is relying on.

-TurretinFan

N.B. As for the date of Barnabas, A.D. 80-120 is probably a more accurate range than A.D. 70.

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Khalid Yasin’s Blunders

May 19, 2008

Dr. White recently posted a YouTube video providing a clip in which Khalid Yasin provides a rather spectacular string of blunders. Dr. White’s video, which includes Dr. White’s own commentary on the blunders is embedded below.

I simply wanted to take the opportunity to try to root out what appears to be the possible conflation taking place in each of Khalid Yasin’s mistakes. First, the video, then – after that – I’ll provide the short analysis:

http://www.youtube.com/v/6xytRqcte3E&hl=en

KY: “The council of Nicea in 354”

The most famous council of Nicea in the 300’s was the council of Nicea of 325. I couldn’t immediately locate any record of a council at Nicea in 354.

KY: “The Romans at the council of Nicea”

Nicea (now known as Iznik) is a city in Turkey, not Italy. The council of Nicea (of 325) was called by Emporor Constantine, a Byzantine Emporer. If there was a council at Nicea at 354, it would have been a local or regional council, and consequently wouldn’t have included any Romans. The famous council of Nicea of 325 undoubtedly included Roman Christians, but also would have include a large majority of non-Romans.

KY: “that there were five books that they didn’t want to include in the New Testament”

There doesn’t appear to be any record of the famous (or any other) council of Nicea deciding on a negative canon of Scripture. It’s possible that Dan Brown, or a similarly unreliable source, has tried to infer such a decree from the inclusion of certain books in the NT canon by Origen before the famous council of Nicea, and the non-inclusion of such books by Athanasius after the council of Nicea.

KY: “The Gospel of Barnabas”

There was an epistle attributed to Barnabus that was extent in the fourth century, but as Dr. White points out in the video: not the Gospel of Barnabus, which was a much, much later writing.

KY: “Who was the Blind Companion of Jesus”

Barnabas was the companion of Paul on Paul’s first missionary journey.

Bartimeaus was a blind man from outside Jericho, who Jesus healed and who subsequently followed Jesus.

Bartholomew was an apostle and companion of Jesus.

Somehow, KY seems to have rolled all three up into one.

KY: “Saint Barnabas”

The primary name associated with the title “Saint” Barnabas is Paul’s missionary companion. He does not appear to have been the author of the Epsitle of Barnabas (although some people attributed it to him), and he clearly was not the author of the “Gospel” that bears his name.

The Gospel of Barnabus is a rather obvious medieval forgery. For more information, one may look here: (link). As Dr. White said, those who try to promote Islamic apologetics should be more mindful of the truth, which is something KY was quite clearly not promoting with his reliance on a medieval forgery and garbled history.

-TurretinFan

Heart and Ear Circumcision

February 22, 2008

I happened to be reading and came across this gem:

*****

He saith also again concerning our ears how he hath circumcised our heart. The Lord saith in the prophet, They have hearkened unto me with the hearing of their ears; and again, he saith, They that are afar off shall hear with their ears; they shall know what I have done; and be ye circumcised, saith the Lord, in your heart; and again, Hear, O Israel, for thus saith the Lord thy God; and again the Spirit of the Lord prophesied, Who is he that wisheth to live for ever? let him hearken unto the voice of my Son.

And again he saith, Hear, O heaven, and give ear, O earth, for the Lord hath spoken these things for a testimony. And again he saith, Hearken unto the voice of the Lord, ye rulers of this people. And again he saith, Hearken ye children unto the voice of one crying in the wilderness.

To this end, therefore, hath he circumcised our hearing, that when we hear his word, we should believe; for the circumcision in which they trust is done away with.

For he hath said that circumcision is not that which was made in the flesh; but they have transgressed, for an evil angel hath deluded them. He saith unto them, These things saith the Lord your God, —here I find a new commandment—Sow not among thorns, but be ye circumcised unto your Lord. And what saith he? Circumcise the hardness of your hearts, and harden not your neck. And again, Behold, saith the Lord, all the Gentiles are uncircumcised in their foreskin, but this people is uncircumcised in their hearts.

*****

Who is this Calvinistic writer? Who is it that believes that God circumcised our hearing, that when we hear his word, we should believe? The answer is the author of the Epistle of Barnabas (usually thought not actually to be written by the companion of Paul).

Our knowledge of the content of the book is largely thanks to its inclusion in the Codex Sinaiticus, and has been dated to the first or second century (generally between A.D. 70 – 150).

The translation above is Charles Hoole’s (I have not verified its accuracy against the Greek) and is available via Google Books here (link).

Praise be to God for the Irresistable grace of Circumcision of heart, mind, eyes, and ears,

-Turretinfan


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