Jehovah`s Witness/The Ancient Words

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Question
Why do you and the Jehovah Witness not use the ancient Hebrew and Greek Bibles to get your understanding of truth?
You seem to just read the verses and come up with the meaning.

Answer
Hi Timothy,

Thank you for your question, but at the moment I am not sure just what it is you are asking.  Perhaps you could provide me with a few examples.

The main Bible that JWs us is the NWT and it is a very reliable rendering into English from the old manuscripts.  Bellow I list the various texts that the NWT uses in the main body and in footnotes.

Personally I use about 20 different English Bibles, and when they vary I will look at the Hebrew and Greek texts that I have to see what word was used and then compare up to 4 different Hebrew and Greek Lexicons for word meaning and usage.  In doing that I have found the NWT generally better than the other Bibles I have.


Of the Hebrew Scriptures
Name of Manuscript       Nash Papyrus
Date          2nd or 1st cent. B.C.E.
Language          Hebrew
Located at          Cambridge, England
Approximate Contents     24 lines of Ten Commandments and some verses of Deuteronomy chaps. 5, 6
Name of Manuscript       Rylands 458
Symbol          957
Date          2nd cent. B.C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Manchester, England
Approximate Contents     Fragments of Deuteronomy chaps. 23-28
Name of Manuscript       Fouad 266
Date          1st cent. B.C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Cairo, Egypt
Approximate Contents     Portions of Genesis and Deuteronomy

Name of Manuscript       Dead Sea Leviticus Scroll
Symbol          4Q LXX Levb
Date          1st cent. B.C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Jerusalem, Israel
Approximate Contents     Fragments of Leviticus

Name of Manuscript       Chester Beatty 6
Symbol          963
Date          2nd cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Dublin, Ireland, and Ann Arbor, Mich.,
         U.S.A.
Approximate Contents     Portions of Numbers and Deuteronomy
Name of Manuscript       Chester Beatty 9, 10
Symbol          967/968
Date          3rd cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Dublin, Ireland, and Princeton, N.J.,    U.S.A.
Approximate Contents     Portions of Ezekiel, Daniel, and Esther
Of the Christian Greek Scriptures
Name of Manuscript       Oxyrhynchus 2
Symbol          P1
Date          3rd cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Philadelphia, Pa., U.S.A.
Approximate Contents     Matt. 1:1-9, 12, 14-20
Name of Manuscript       Oxyrhynchus 1228
Symbol          P22
Date          3rd cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Glasgow, Scotland
Approximate Contents     Fragments of John chaps. 15, 16
Name of Manuscript       Michigan 1570
Symbol          P37
Date          3rd/4th cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Ann Arbor, Mich., U.S.A.
Approximate Contents     Matt. 26:19-52
Name of Manuscript       Chester Beatty 1
Symbol          P45
Date          3rd cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Dublin, Ireland; Vienna, Austria
Approximate Contents     Fragments of Matthew, Mark, Luke,  John, and Acts

Name of Manuscript       Chester Beatty 2
Symbol          P46
Date          c. 200 C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Dublin, Ireland; Ann Arbor, Mich., U.S.A.
Approximate Contents     Nine of Paul’s letters

Name of Manuscript       Chester Beatty 3
Symbol          P47
Date          3rd cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Dublin, Ireland
Approximate Contents     Rev. 9:10–17:2

Name of Manuscript       Rylands 457
Symbol          P52
Date          c. 125 C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Manchester, England
Approximate Contents     John 18:31-33, 37, 38
Name of Manuscript       Bodmer 2
Symbol          P66
Date          c. 200 C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Geneva, Switzerland
Approximate Contents     Most of John

Name of Manuscript       Bodmer 7, 8
Symbol          P72
Date          3rd/4th cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Geneva, Switzerland, and Vatican Library  in Rome, Italy
Approximate Contents     Jude, 1 Peter, and 2 Peter
Name of Manuscript       Bodmer 14, 15
Symbol          P75
Date          3rd cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Geneva, Switzerland
Approximate Contents     Most of Luke and John


SOME LEADING VELLUM AND LEATHER MANUSCRIPTS
Of the Hebrew Scriptures (in Hebrew)
Name of Manuscript       Aleppo Codex
Symbol          Al
Date          930 C.E.
Language          Hebrew
Located at          Formerly at Aleppo, Syria. Now in Israel.
Approximate Contents     Large part of Hebrew Scriptures  (Ben Asher text)

Name of Manuscript       British Museum Codex Or4445
Date          10th cent. C.E.
Language          Hebrew
Located at          London, England
Approximate Contents     Most of Pentateuch
Name of Manuscript       Cairo Karaite Codex
Symbol          Ca
Date          895 C.E.
Language          Hebrew
Located at          Cairo, Egypt
Approximate Contents     Earlier and later Prophets

Name of Manuscript       Leningrad Codex
Symbol          B 19A
Date          1008 C.E.
Language          Hebrew
Located at          Leningrad,   U.S.S.R.
Approximate Contents     Hebrew Scriptures

Name of Manuscript       Petersburg Codex of the Prophets
Symbol          B 3
Date          916 C.E.
Language          Hebrew
Located at          Leningrad,    U.S.S.R.
Approximate Contents     Later Prophets

Name of Manuscript       Dead Sea First Isaiah Scroll</b>
Symbol          1QIsa
Date          End of 2nd cent. B.C.E.
Language          Hebrew
Located at          Jerusalem, Israel
Approximate Contents     Isaiah

Name of Manuscript       Dead Sea Psalms Scroll
Symbol          11QPsa
Date          1st cent. C.E.
Language          Hebrew
Located at          Jerusalem, Israel
Approximate Contents     Portions of 41 of the last third of the  Psalms
Of the <i<Septuagint</i> and Christian Greek Scriptures
Name of Manuscript       Sinaiticus
Symbol          א (01)
Date          4th cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          London, England
Approximate Contents     Part of Hebrew Scriptures and all of Greek Scriptures as well as some
         Apocryphal writings

Name of Manuscript       Alexandrinus
Symbol          A (02)
Date          5th cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          London, England
Approximate Contents     All of Hebrew and Greek Scriptures (some small portions lost or damaged)          
         as well as some Apocryphal writings

Name of Manuscript       Vatican 1209
Symbol          B (03)
Date          4th cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Vatican Library in Rome, Italy
Approximate Contents     Originally complete Bible. Now missing: Gen. 1:1–46:28; Ps. 106-137; Hebrews
         after 9:14; 2 Timothy;  Titus; Philemon; Revelation

Name of Manuscript       Ephraemi Syri rescriptus
Symbol          C (04)
Date          5th cent. C.E.
Language          Greek
Located at          Paris, France
Approximate Contents     Parts of Hebrew Scriptures (64 leaves)   and of the Greek Scriptures (145
         leaves)
Name of Manuscript       Codex Bezae Cantabrigiensis
Symbol          Dea (05)
Date          5th cent. C.E.
Language          Greek-Latin
Located at          Cambridge, England
Approximate Contents     Most of four Gospels and Acts, a few   verses of 3 John

Name of Manuscript       Codex Claromontanus
Symbol          DP (06)
Date          6th cent. C.E.
Language          Greek-Latin
Located at          Paris, France
Approximate Contents     Pauline Epistles (including Hebrews)


Sources for the Text of the New World Translation—Hebrew Scriptures Original Hebrew Writings and Early Copies
   Aramaic Targums
   Dead Sea Scrolls
   Samaritan Pentateuch
   Greek Septuagint
       Old Latin
       Coptic, Ethiopic, Armenian
   Hebrew Consonantal Text
         Latin Vulgate
         Greek Versions—Aquila, Theodotion, Symmachus
         Syriac Peshitta
       Masoretic Text
         Cairo Codex
         Petersburg Codex of the Prophets
         Aleppo Codex
         Ginsburg’s Hebrew Text
         Codex Leningrad B 19 A
         Biblia Hebraica (BHK), <b>Biblia Hebraica
         Stuttgartensia (BHS)
         

Sources for the Text of the New World Translation—Christian Greek Scriptures Original Greek Writings and Early Copies
   Armenian Version
   Coptic Versions
   Syriac Versions—Curetonian, Philoxenian, Harclean,
    Palestinian, Sinaitic, Peshitta
   Old Latin
       Latin Vulgate
         Sixtine and Clementine Revised Latin Texts
   Greek Cursive MSS.
       Erasmus Text
       Stephanus Text
         Textus Receptus
         Griesbach Greek Text
         Emphatic Diaglott
   Papyri—(e.g., Chester Beatty P45, P46, P47; Bodmer P66, P74,
    P75)
   Early Greek Uncial MSS.— Vatican 1209 (B), Sinaitic (א),
    Alexandrine (A), Ephraemi Syri rescriptus (C), Bezae (D)
       Westcott and Hort Greek Text
       Bover Greek Text
       Merk Greek Text
       Nestle-Aland Greek Text
       United Bible Societies Greek Text
       23 Hebrew Versions (14th-20th centuries), translated
        either from the Greek or from the Latin Vulgate, using
        Tetragrammaton for divine name

I look forward to seeing what examples you have in mind.

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Brenton Hepburn

Expertise

I AM one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, and I am always learning. I am NOT an expert in the full sense of the word but I can answer questions on the reliability of the NWT - the so called mind control problems-so called prophecies - how being a JW affects the individual and relatives and general practices and history of Jehovah’s Witnesses. >>WARNING<< Please be aware that there are people here who ARE NOT practicing JWs. By all means ask these ones questions. Depending on the question you will get an honest answer, but, generally the answer you get, will mislead you as to what we believe, often because, they do not give ALL the relevant details. These ones will, have an agenda against JWs., and will at times give answers that are not correct in regard to JW teachings and practices. If you are after a answer from one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, please read some of the answers that the various experts have published before choosing someone. If you want to ask one of the NON JWs a question, that is fine, BUT if you want a balancing view after asking one of the NON JWs, ask a JW the same question. PLEASE ALSO NOTE: There(have been)and are, some "experts" here who are NOT always the most courteous and polite, at times are actually quite rude, that applies to both JW's and non JW's and their answers may offend, especially when they get personal and attack the character of the person and not the message. Unfortunately some here that have done that. So it IS IMPORTANT to chose an "expert" that YOU feel will best suit YOU by reading some of their past answers . . . . .

Experience

I have been a publisher since 1964. When I first went on the internet I found a lot of negative information dealing with Jehovah’s Witnesses covering prophecy, mind control and what many said was a very bad translation of the Bible known as the NWT. It shook my faith. After may hours researching these topics I could see why some felt that way, but, I was also able to explain why there were these misleading views. I can now set matters straight for anyone that has negative information about Jehovah’s Witness to show them that such information is at best misleading and at worst dangerous lies.

Education/Credentials
I have been a student of the Bible for many years, am trying to teach myself Biblical Greek. Was a public tax accountant for many years untill SEP 2009 when I gave it up due to health problems.

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