Many (perhaps most) modern versions emulate the Revised Version and simply omit the sentence in question without any explanatory comment. This is a complete sentence, and yet it did not receive, in the Textus Receptus editions, a verse number of its own. It does not appear here in the majority of important codices, such as א B C D L W Δ Θ and Latin, Sahidic, and some Syriac and Boharic manuscripts. It does, however, appear in some significant manuscripts, including ƒ1,13, A, two very old Latin manuscripts, and some Syriac and Boharic manuscripts, and with slight differences in minuscule 33 (9th century).
“… coming to the baptism” א* B cop Origen; “… coming to his baptism” א1 C D L W 0233 f1, 33 565 579 700. 892 1241 1424 Maj it syr cop. The earliest textual support and likely the original reading of Matthew is
The process of attempting to ascertain the original wording of a text is important, regardless of how minor the textual variant may seem. Our primary purpose is to give the Bible readers what God said by way of his human authors, Our primary goal is to be accurate and faithful to the original text. Therefore, we must have the original words.
Originally, all New Testament texts were written in Greek. By the year 500, these texts had been translated into Syriac, various Coptic, Latin, Gothic, Armenian, Georgian, and perhaps Ethiopic dialects. This article is a great introduction for those just learning about New Testament Textual Studies.
It is my opinion that scribal gap-filling accounts for many of the textual variants (especially textual expansions) in the New Testament—particularly in the narrative books (the Four Gospels and Acts). What is scribal gap-filling?
Kurt Aland (1979, 43) favors a type of textual criticism that he calls the local-genealogical method. He defines it as follows:
Confronted by a mass of conflicting readings, editors must decide which variants deserve to be included in the text and which should be relegated to the apparatus. Although at first, it may seem to be a hopeless task amid so many thousands of variant readings to sort out those that should be regarded as original, textual scholars have developed certain generally acknowledged criteria of evaluation.
In the earliest days of the Christian church, after an apostolic letter was sent to a congregation or an individual, or after a gospel was written to meet the needs of a particular reading public, copies would be made in order to extend its influence and to enable others to profit from it as well. It was inevitable that such handwritten copies would contain a greater or lesser number of differences in wording from the original. NOTE: This is an introductory article, but filled with links to more in-depth articles if one desires a deeper look.
What is the meaning of Luke 23:34, and why does it not appear in the Updated American Standard Version (UASV) of the Holy Scriptures? Yet, it is found in the English Standard Version, the Christian Standard Bible, and the New American Standard Bible 1995 but within single square brackets in the NASB2020 and within double square brackets in the Lexham English Bible. Isn't part of the text spurious?