Jeremiah - Septuagint vs Masoretic

Jerry Heath's picture

The clear distinction between the Septuagint and the Masoretic version of Jeremiah is problematic.

The Septuagint is commonly referred to as the Eqyptian version because it is thought that Egypt is where it was translated and the geographic separation with the Palestinian area could explain some of the textual differences with the Masoretic.

The Masoretic is sometimes referred to as the Babylonian version because it was developed by those who returned from Babylon.

In my view the Eqyptian, Septuagint, version of Jeremiah should be more authentic since Jeremiah went with the group that escaped to Eqypt. This group would have a more authoritative version of what Jeremiah wrote.

Jerry Heath

Maria Smith's picture


Dear Mr. Heath

Just a question about context. I have not studied as you and am in no position to comment on this whole thread but do have a puzzling question.

You state:
"The important issue is that of context. There is no meaning without context. When you read the bible the "information" you get from that reading is based on the context of the bible (the context that you understand at that moment). The context includes where the book comes from historically and culturally. We know much about that history and are in a positon to compare the history of three versions, the text content of two, and perhaps someday the textual context of the third. We need to recognize the context. There is no meaning without context".

While I'm in total agreement that context is important, the last line of your sentence is what brings about my question.

How do you explain the tremendous faith in those of us who are not learned in the scriptures as many here and that faith was developed only by reading a simple bible? How can you say it has no meaning?

I agree that without some context, people can get such wrong ideas or be mislead but overwhelmingly the majority have done fairly well for so many centuries.

By "context" I am referring to the simple, every day bible and not the following stated in your comment:

"The Babylonian or Masoretic text, the Eqyptian which is represented by the Septuagint and some texts in the Dead Sea Scrolls, and the Palestinian which is represented by the Sameritan bible and some Dead Sea Scrolls (notable by the particularly square Hebrew characters).."

Not all have access to this or have studied to even know that such information exists. Still, my only answer would be that God protects what is divine and imparts His light to those whose hearts are opened to learn and who want to please and know Him, thereby granting His grace of faith by a simple bible.

Thank you and hope I can learn from you but it is way above me and I'm taking baby steps in comparison.

Many blessings for sharing your knowledge!

Yours in Christ,

Yours in Christ,
Maria 玛丽亚
CCEL Hostess