OLD TESTAMENT TEXTUAL STUDIES: The Aramaic Targums

The “Targums” were loose translations or paraphrases of the Hebrew Old Testament Scriptures into Aramaic. Although fragments of the early Targums of some books were found among the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Jewish Targums as a whole likely found their current form no sooner than about the fifth century C.E.

Bible Texts and Versions

We must face the reality that while the original 39 OT manuscripts and 27 NT manuscripts were inspired by God [Lit. “God-breathed”] (1 Tim. 3:16), as the authors were moved along by the Holy Spirit (1 Peter 1:21), this was not the case with the copyists thereafter. Yes, hundreds of thousands of scribal errors crept into our manuscripts. Yet, there is ...

The Syriac Old Testament Version

Syriac is the language of ancient Syria and one of the dialects of Aramaic, which was an official language of the Persian Empire. It was spoken in northern Mesopotamia and around ancient Antioch. In the second or third century C.E., as a written language, Syriac came into wide use. Within this Western dialect of Aramaic, many important early Christian texts are preserved, and which is still used by Syrian Christians as a liturgical language.

JEROME: The Forerunner in Bible Translation

Jerome’s Latin name was Eusebius Hieronymus. He was born about 346 C.E. Jerome’s translation of the Hebrew Scriptures was considerably more than simply some revision of a text that existed in his day. For centuries it altered the direction of Bible study and translation. “The Vulgate,” said historian Will Durant, “remains as the greatest and most influential literary accomplishment of the fourth century.”

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