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The Latest Work on the Divine Name

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3 hours ago, indagator said:

Probably best to stick with the updated edition.

I get it, and thanks for the advice. If I were to buy every book I wanted to read, I would have spent tens of thousands, quite literally, and in the most literal sense of the word literal. ?

 

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JTR: that depends on the dialect of English—there are many. Do you care to specify (UK with several sub-categories; Canadian; Aussie; American with several sub-categories; South African, etc.)?

JWI: Your latest words remind me of Eccl. 12:12... Surls' book is nice on his main thesis, that the name's meaning in Exodus, the context in which Jah revealed the meaning of his name, is best understood by pondering how he revealed himself as the book goes along, esp. in the later chapters.

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On 7/16/2018 at 3:45 PM, indagator said:

I thought about posting this on the recent thread "Early Christians, the New Testament and the Divine Name," partly because of a question someone posed there on the earliest evidence for Jewish disuse of the name. However, the issue merits its own thread. There is a book published a few years ago on the Greek form of the tetragrammaton, iota-alpha-omega (???), that is on-topic, yet that seems to have escaped the attention of non-scholars, and for that matter, many scholars as well. It's dense reading to be sure, but worth the effort. It's written by one of the scholars who has penned reviews of Robert Wilkinson's monograph on the tetragrammaton, Frank Shaw. Its title is The Earliest Non-mystical Jewish Use of the Iao (the last word in Greek script ???), volume 70 of Peeters Press's series Biblical Exegesis and Theology (Leuven 2014). In fact, Shaw's expertise on the name is no doubt why the editors of Oxford's Journal of Theological Studies asked him to review Wilkinson's book.

Shaw's point of departure is the finding among the Qumran documents of a LXX manuscript of Leviticus that has Iao for the Hebrew text's Yhwh. What he attempts to do is gather together all known evidence for this Greek form of the name not used in magic or among Gnostics. His findings are surprising to most people who know something about the issue, whether a layperson or a scholar. It seems that this form of the divine name, vocalized as "Ya-ho," was the active pronunciation of the divine name when Jesus and the apostles lived. There is considerable evidence for this, a point that had been briefly made some years earlier in Sean McDonough's book, YHWH at Patmos: Rev. 1:4 in its Hellenistic and Early Jewish Setting (Mohr Siebeck 1999). Indeed, Shaw corrects some of McDonough's errors. Among other things addressed is the question of when the name began to be disused by Jews in the BCE period, and how use and non-use coexisted for many centuries until some time into the Christian era when disuse totally won out. Shaw offers a strong rebuttal of some Evangelical scholars, notably Albert Pietersma and Martin Rösel, who continue to contend against the mounting evidence that kyrios was originally used by the LXX's translators instead of a real form of the name. He also brings up a point made at this forum by JW Insider that "a problem with the JW position is that the use of a Hebrew YHWH in the middle of a Greek manuscript is an indication that it was not to be pronou[n]ced." What Shaw proposes is that within the Judaism into which Jesus and the apostles were born, there was diversity among the people regarding using the name. The upper class who provide most of our existing documentation of that society, and who are responsible for the LXX manuscripts that have come down to us that have the Hebrew tetragrammaton amid the Greek text, did not want to vocalize the name for multiple reasons, but the masses, among whom Jesus worked and from whom came the apostles and other disciples of him, freely used the name as Yaho in Aramaic. This then shows up as Iao in the written Greek sources.

Shaw also calls out NT textual critics for largely ignoring the findings of, and theory of, George Howard regarding the many textual problems of dozens of NT passages where the Father is referred to. This is also one place where he criticizes McDonough who seems again, like Pietersma and Rösel for the LXX, to have represented Evangelicals who want to downplay these NT textual variants. Shaw modifies Howard's notion that the original NT documents likely did not have mainly Yhwh/???? in them, but instances of Iao/??? instead. Another noteworthy thing he does is date just when this Greek form of the name began to appear in mystical sources. Scholarship had never before done this, and there have been very sloppy and erroneous assumptions made regarding this matter, including again McDonough. As it turns out, the evidence points to the use of Iao/??? among magicians and mystics dating to the beginning of the second century CE. Shaw even proposes that these types picked up on this form of the name due to the earliest Christians using it in their preaching work. Later Christians then had reason to remove the name from their documents (LXX and NT) because the "pernicious heretics" and magicians were using it with more and more frequency.

There are many other interesting points in the book, but this post has already gotten longer than I'd planned on. For those who have the stamina to work through it, the book is well worth what you will learn from it.

 

 

Here is an interesting theory:

Here is a museum quality reproduction of the Septuagint fragment of  "4Q120 or  pap4QLXXLevb   "of Leviticus 4:27 frame included.

 
 
    There is evidence that this fragment may have been written by a CHRISTIAN and not by Jews. Although most scholars say that this fragment was written by a Jew because it is from Leviticus and from the Qumran caves. But did only Jews use the Qumran caves? {When the Christians left Jerusalem in 66 C.E. they traveled right past the Qumran cave where this scroll came from "Cave 4" on there way to the mountains of Pella north along the Jordan River}!!! The Christians also made copies of the Hebrew Scriptures which they would have translated into Greek the main language of the First Century. The main reason why this was probably written by a Christian is because the Divine Name in this fragment "IAW" {Iao} is a PRONOUNCEABLE rendering of the Tetragrammaton. A Jew following the custom at the time of not pronouncing the Divine Name would never have written a PRONOUNCEABLE RENDERING as that would go against their traditions. However Christians did not follow Jewish traditions as Jesus denounced such very strongly. Jews who wrote the earliest pre-Christian LXX wrote the Tetragrammaton in HEBREW within a GREEK TEXT in most cases making it stand out in order not to pronounce it. However this manuscript 4Q120 is in ALL Greek including the rendering of the Tetragrammaton!!! Thus Origen {184 - 253 C.E.} an early Church Father testifies that "When Iao is laid in the text it is pronounced as by Greeks NOT HEBREWS". Also John Chrysostom {349 - 407 C.E.} stated :"Regarding IAO - a name of God Hebrews left UNTRANSLATED". So a Hebrew or Jew would not have written "IAO" for God's Name as that was a Greek TRANSLATION OF YHWH. The following early CHRISTIAN Fathers also made reference to "IAO as being in the Scriptures during their time {130 to 538 C.E.} Irenaeus, Tertullian, Origen, Eusebius, John Chrysostom, Jerome, Theodoret and Severus. 
   The date for this fragment 4Q120 or pap4QLXXLevb    is from the late 1st Century BCE - early 1st Century C.E. and thus known by Jesus and the First Century Bible writers! Therefore one of Jesus Apostles may have written this fragment early in the Christian Congregations existence as they were commissioned to preach to ALL the earth in the Great Commission then they would naturally have translated the Hebrew Scriptures into GREEK as well as the writings of the New Testament. {See also Vat 2125 Codex Marchalianus {6th Century C.E.} which has a greek tetragrammaton in the margins of a CHRISTIAN manuscript as well as IAO and the Nomina Sacra all together for YHWH!!! {Which we offer a page facsimile here on ebay as well}. That means that the First Century New Testament Bible writers may have Translated the Divine Name as "IAO" {Which is JEHOVAH in English} in the Bible since the early Church Fathers  stated that ""IAO" comes from the SCRIPTURES" !!! And many Christian writings after the First Century had "IAO" as a Greek transliteration for YHWH. Gnostic Christians began to misuse God's Name in magical practices in later Centuries however the evidence clearly shows that "IAO" was God's name in Greek when the New Testament was originally written!
 
    So this fragment 4Q120 may have been written by a Christian translator not governed by Jewish traditions who wanted to witness to gentiles or hellenized Jews {Who only understood Greek} in the First Century sometime after 30 C.E.  The evidence indicates from manuscripts and early Church Fathers is that New Testament Bible writers writing in Greek Scripture used the Divine Name in Greek as "IAO" in the New Testament for YHWH !!! {Josephus mentioned that God's Name was four VOWELS rather than consonants so he may have been referring to the Greek transliteration since is was all vowels IAO which became in Latin "Iehova" then in English as JehOvAh = JAH "I" became "J" in English - examples: Jehovah, Jesus, Jehoshophat, Jehoram and many more}.
 
          Reasons that this manuscript may have been written by a Christian scribe:
 
1. Christians were not governed by Jewish traditions of not pronouncing the Tetragrammaton
2. Christians made many translations to spread the Bible message over "all" in earth in every language, especially Greek in the First Century
3. Christians were well renowned for copying expertise and 4Q120 was an exemplar as one of the best and was uncorrupted.
4. Christians used the Tetragrammaton in various forms especially "IAW" as noted by Origen and other early Church Fathers
5. Many Qumran Scrolls came from outside the community and stored there.
6. Some Greek speaking Jewish Christians may have deposited scrolls there such as when they left Jerusalem in 66 C.E. they passed right next to Cave 4 and 7 where 4Q120 was in cave 4 and Christians used papyrus extensively as well. {See P. Comfort}.
7. For centuries Christians incessantly read and reproduced Greek, Hebrew and Latin forms of the Tetragrammaton in Hexapla and Biblical onomastica {Lexicons with IAO} and Patristic literature. 
8. Compelling evidence that some Greek Bible copies like the ones read by Christians such as Ireaneus, Origen, Eusebius, Tertullian, Jerome and others were ALL using "IAW" for the Tetragrammaton !!! {See writings by Pavlos D. Vasileiadis from Thessalonika University Greece}. Thus Greek Translations of the New Testament may have contained the Greek Tetragrammaton transliteration "IAW" just as 4Q120 of Leviticus also does.
 
 Thus the New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures in restoring the Divine Name to the Bible have much evidence that the Tetragrammaton was in the First Century original autographs of the New Testament Scriptures weather they wrote it in Hebrew or Greek. And both the Greek transliteration of IAO and the Hebrew YHWH was well known to those in the First Century!!!
 
{We have also acquired much of the other evidence from the early Church Fathers that used "IAO" in their writings thus proving that the early Christians did indeed use the Tetragrammaton in their writings as well as testimony from then that the original autographs of the New Testament contained the Tetragrammaton. We sell all of these here on ebay - look up each Church Father by name or "IAO" in search.}
 
This is from the following ebay link : 
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35 minutes ago, bruceq said:
          Reasons that this manuscript may have been written by a Christian scribe:
 

Forgive an off-topic comment, if you will. I have long wanted to thank you, but did not know that you still hung around.

I finished the book I was working on, 'Dear Mr. Putin - Jehovah's Witnesses Write Russia,' and you were the biggest help, since you continually posted updates of persecutions there. I am grateful to you for that.

I also took it to heart when you chastised me for 'liking' the contents of apostates, which I had never done much, but resolved to do not at all henceforth. That is not to say that I have not exchanged barbs with the 'house apostate' who resembles, after a time, a big cuddly snarling lovable rabid old teddy bear. And even a Jack someone or other, whe has launched as many as ten petulant complaints in a single day. But 'guest apostates', like a certain one who used to sign off 'he he he )))))' until he discontinued it, apparantly realizing it made him look like a moron, I do not respond to (usually).

It is well that you stay out of it. You have chosen the high road. I recall you saying that you had recently been appointed MS and married not too long ago, and that you wanted to focus on those real priorities. I hope things are going well with you.

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10 hours ago, bruceq said:

There is evidence that this fragment may have been written by a CHRISTIAN and not by Jews.

I have just completed a quick reading the book by Frank Shaw recommended by @indagator. I have also done the same for another book recommended to me late last year, "The Earliest Christian Artifacts" by Larry Hurtado. I hope you get a chance to read both books yourself if you have not already.

From what I can see, there is no real evidence that makes this particular fragment more likely to have come from a Christian. It's not just the more likely date that would place the document about 100 years prior to the first known Christian writings, it's also the fact that there is plenty of additional evidence that Greek-speaking Jews used this pronounceable form of the name for hundreds of years prior to Christianity. They had clearly been using it in writing and also pronouncing it too. Before the Greek Scriptures were written, there is evidence that some Jews had already stopped pronouncing the name, but evidence shows that this could not have been true of all Jews all at the same time, everywhere. Perhaps that practice among the Jews had reached a pervasive saturation point some time before Origen and others remarked upon that practice.

BTW, as TTH has also said, glad to see you stopping by.

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I'm sure that "Indagator" has much more background to provide a better answer, but we all learn from questioning, so I will try to take up the question behind the theory: "Could 4Q120 have been written by a Christian?"

First, it's a very interesting idea. To avoid a lot of separate quotes, I'll try to just re-quote a larger section and intersperse comments. These are just my opinions of course, but I'll highlight in orange-yellow if I think the evidence for the statement or implication of the question is not that good, and red if I think the evidence clearly goes against the particular idea presented, and green where the idea appears correct. My comments will be bracketed and in black.

There is evidence that this fragment may have been written by a CHRI??STIAN and not by Jews. [Haven't yet come across any such evidence.] Although most scholars say that this fragme?nt was written by a Jew because it is from Leviticus and from the Qumran cav?es.??? [However, scholars identify it as Jewish not just because it comes from the Qumram caves but because it does not present any of the primary unique indicators of Christian documents from the first century. (see Hurtado, for example)] But did only Jews use the Qumran caves? [All the evidence indicates, Yes, only Jews. There have been several theories about the purpose of the caves and who used them. All of them point to one or more Jewish groups, and there is no evidence of any Christian group who might have used them.] {When the Christians left Jerusalem in 66 C.E. they traveled right past the Qumran cave where this scroll came from "Cave 4" on there way to the mountains of Pella north along the Jordan River}!!!? [Looking at a map of Jerusalem to Pella (see attached picture below) Cave 4 would be many miles out of the way. Jesus indicated that the Christians in Jerusalem should take the quickest route.] The Christians also made copies of the Hebrew Scriptures which they would have translated into Greek the main language of the First Century. [The evidence so far, shows that Christians did not make copies of the Hebrew Scriptures that they translated into Greek. Instead, they appear to have used the LXX which was an already existing translation. There is actually no evidence that they made any copies or translations in the first century, but this does not mean it was not done.] The main reason why this was probably written by a Christian is because the Divine Name in this fragment "IAW" {Iao} is a PRONOUNCEABLE rendering of the Tetragrammaton. [Yes, IAO is a pronounceable rendering of the Divine Name as it had been pronounced by certain groups of Jews for 100's of years. However, I believe that there is no evidence yet that indicates that any Christian in the first century C.E., or even the second century C.E., pronounced or wrote the name this way. This does not mean that they did not, and in fact, I believe that you are right that many Christians did -- but only because especially the Aramaic-speaking Christians would have been following a Jewish custom for which there is a lot of evidence.] A Jew following the custom at the time of not pronouncing the Divine Name would never have written a PRONOUNCEABLE RENDERING as that would go against their traditions. [Except that we already know from the history of the term IAO, that Jews had been using this pronounceable form of the name for hundreds of years. There is evidence that these traditions against pronouncing it were not yet consistent until after the first century C.E.] However Christians did not follow Jewish traditions as Jesus denounced such very strongly. [This statement could be right or wrong, depending on which traditions are being referred to. If we recognize that many Jews were still following the Jewish tradition of pronouncing the name, then I'm sure Jesus would not have condemned that good tradition. Jesus even said of the scribes and Pharisees in Mt 23:3: "Practice and obey whatever they tell you to do."] Jews who wrote the earliest pre-Christian LXX wrote the Tetragrammaton in HEBREW within a GREEK TEXT in most cases making it stand out in order not to pronounce it. [The earliest pre-Christian LXX translations may have initially used IAO. Based on the common use of IAO at the time it is reasonable to conclude that all original LXX translations used "IAO." There is no conclusive evidence that they did not, and no conclusive evidence that they did. But there is evidence that it was earlier than the first century C.E. when IAO was used, and of course any of the other 3 major known LXX variations for the Divine Name. It's possible that some of the LXX translators may have already used "kyrios" in their earliest copies. This means that some would have already been influenced by a tradition not to pronounce the name (in 250 BCE), whether they had used YHWH-square, YHWH-paleo, kyrios, or some other replacement for the Divine Name.]

I'll stop here for now.  

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Only time for a brief reply—sorry. As JWI brings out, certain people have from time to time tried to tie manuscript finds from Qumran to Christianity. All such things have come to naught, and rightly so. A suggestion, bruceq: before forming opinions on a matter, gain the knowledge necessary to do so. In this case, one of the essential points is the testimony of the Greek historian Diodorus of Sicily who states that Jews were using Ιαω as the active pronunciation of their God around 50 BC/BCE. Obviously Christianity did not yet exist then. Therefore, the Qumran manuscript would be support for Diodorus' statement. Yet again, all this is in Shaw's book.

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{When the Christians left Jerusalem in 66 C.E. they traveled right past the Qumran cave where this scroll came from "Cave 4" on there way to the mountains of Pella north along the Jordan River}!!!? [Looking at a map of Jerusalem to Pella (see attached picture below) Cave 4 would be many miles out of the way. Jesus indicated that the Christians in Jerusalem should take the quickest route.] 

The reason I came up with this theory of the path was according to terrain maps they would not have taken the "as a bird flies" route because of terrain but would have taken the already existing roads of which the main one went directly east from Jerusalem to the northern tip of the Dead Sea where cave 4 is located then would have traveled up the Jordan river to Pella. People other than Jews used the caves over the Centuries for shelter - why coudn't the Christians have done so as well? Not that any of this really matters but I was just offering a possibility that this MSS may have been written by Christians since the early Church Fathers mentioned IAO as coming from the "Scriptures" and many other indications as presented above such as by Chrysostom and Origen. I realize none in academic circles of Christendom agrees but that does not mean they are correct just because they are a majority view. {As for dates used by scholars obviously nothing is exact and dates can be off by a couple centuries certainly 50 BC to 50 CE is within possiblity for the margin of error}.

However much evidence for a Christian origin can be found here : 

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4 hours ago, indagator said:

A suggestion, bruceq: before forming opinions on a matter, gain the knowledge necessary to do so.

Sorry i am not a college professor or anything like that. I just have an interest in the subject and have about 250 books dealing with it and thought i would give my 2 cents as i do enjoy discussing this subject. I have read and studied Shaws book about a year ago and i was just giving a theory as an interesting possibility for discussion.

As for more proof of 4Q120 possibly being of Christian origin please read pgs. 45 - 51 of the following ;

"The use of a form of the Tetragrammaton within the 4Q120 manuscript was admittedly the major reason for classi-fying it as of Jewish origin. In the light of the available in-formation today (such as lowering the date of the common use of the Tetragrammaton and the evidenced longstanding use of Ιαω among Christians], might a Jewish Christian ori-gin of the manuscript, penned sometime during the first cen-tury CE be considered possible? Some positive factors for such a hypothesis are the following"

 

 

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1 hour ago, bruceq said:

The reason I came up with this theory of the path was according to terrain maps they would not have taken the "as a bird flies" route but would have taken the already existing roads of which the main one went directly east from Jerusalem to the northern tip of the Dead Sea where cave 4 is located.

I understand what you are saying. I, for one, appreciate the theory because it takes some good independent thinking to come up with a theory that is outside the norm. I like testing theories along with available evidence because it helps to either confirm or weaken the prevailing theories. In this case, I wasn't saying it was impossible that some Christians might have gone a few miles out their way to visit the caves of the Dead Sea, but I was commenting on the "sureness" of the statement about what the Christians, in fact, did. You didn't say that they might have, or that they probably did. You just said that they did travel right past, not just the caves in general, but Cave 4 specifically.

1 hour ago, bruceq said:

When the Christians left Jerusalem in 66 C.E. they traveled right past the Qumran cave where this scroll came from "Cave 4" on there way to the mountains of Pella north along the Jordan River

This is therefore used as if it is solid evidence to feed a theory, when it is conjecture utilized to feed a theory. For that matter, there was a road to Jericho from Jerusalem and we do not know that it touched the Dead Sea and Jordan, even if it might have. Also, it is only extra-Biblical conjecture that the Christians generally fled to Pella. When Jesus said to flee to the mountains, there were actually hills all around Jerusalem, and one of the few directions they could travel "away" from mountains would have been toward the Jordan Valley and Dead Sea. You can see that by looking at the terrain relief map you provided. It seems that someone could have just as easily used Jesus' words as evidence that Christians, in general, would not have immediately traveled to the valley, but would have headed toward mountains and hills instead.

These are interesting ideas about Christians using Qumram and the vicinity, or the date of this particular scroll (4Q120), or the value of the evidence that Church Fathers knew about IAO. The strength and value of such ideas is always worth considering but from what I've seen so far, none of it helps your overall theory. But again, all of the things we state are just opinions here, so I hope you will feel welcome to put any ideas here that you want to consider.

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8 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

When Jesus said to flee to the mountains, there were actually hills all around Jerusalem, and one of the few directions they could travel "away" from mountains would have been toward the Jordan Valley and Dead Sea.

Agree -  however Jesus said to those in "Judea" not just Jerusalem to "flee to the mountains" obviously if they took the words exactly they would not have fled to the mountains around Jerusalem but would have left the province of Judea of which Pella or any of the mountains on the other side of the Jordan would have sufficed.

Sorry about my "wording" it is all conjecture of course i was not an A student in English class. lol..

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2 minutes ago, bruceq said:

Agree -  however Jesus said to those in "Judea" not just Jerusalem to "flee to the mountains" obviously if they took the words exactly they would not have fled to the mountains around Jerusalem but would have left the province of Judea

Perhaps. But telling all the people of Pennsylvania to flee to the mountains would not mean leaving Pennsylvania, but would mean leaving the cities and going up into the hills. (In Judea, the cities were, of course, the focus of Rome's armies, including Masada for example). Surely you didn't think Jesus meant that all the people on the southern borders of Judea near Idumaea would begin heading toward Jerusalem (the quickest route) on their way to Samaria and the mountains of Pella.

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16 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

Perhaps. But telling all the people of Pennsylvania to flee to the mountains would not mean leaving Pennsylvania, but would mean leaving the cities and going up into the hills. (In Judea, the cities were, of course, the focus of Rome's armies, including Masada for example). Surely you didn't think Jesus meant that all the people on the southern borders of Judea near Idumaea would begin heading toward Jerusalem (the quickest route) on their way to Samaria and the mountains of Pella.

Agree but perhaps why Pella is mentioned is because that is where most of the Christians went or perhaps that is where the "Apostles" went - again it is all conjecture. My only point is that the caves may have been used by more than just Jews and therefore Jewish Christians. Most if not all the mss left there were from Jews but why couldn't other religious groups such as Jewish Christians {Apostles} been there. {Likely the Apostles were in Jerusalem in 66 C.E. as just a few years prior the issue in Acts 15 came up they went to the Apostles and elders in "Jerusalem". 

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19 minutes ago, bruceq said:

Agree but perhaps why Pella is mentioned is because that is where most of the Christians went or perhaps that is where the "Apostles" went - again it is all conjecture.

A little off-topic, but I noticed this (for what it's worth) in the Wikipedia article under "Flight to Pella:"

  • The fourth-century church fathers
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    and
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    cite a tradition that before the
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    in AD 70 the
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    had been
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    warned to flee to
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    (Tabaquat Fahil) in the region of the
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    across the
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    .
  • The authenticity of this tradition has been a much debated question since 1951 when
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    in his work The Fall of Jerusalem and the Christian Church provided strong arguments against it, arguing that the
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    would have been allied to their compatriots, the
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    ; only after the destruction of the Jewish Christian community would Christianity have emerged as a universalist religion.
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    The Christian-Zealot alliance has hardly been taken seriously in
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    , but the historicity of the flight to Pella has been controversial ever since.
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I'm a little surprised that we would have no evidence of this tradition until quotes from nearly 300 years after it would have happened.

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Well, it's been a while since JWI obtained and read Shaw's book on the Greek form of the tetragrammaton, Ιαω. He says he's given it two full readings. No doubt the book is dense and difficult, but it has much to offer anyone interested in the divine name.

There are many informative features of the work. One of its strengths is setting the mystical use of Ιαω, that is, its use by Gnostics and magicians, in the proper historical framework. Previous scholars—and many current ones still—see Ιαω and immediately think "magic" or "Gnostic" without understanding how those people came to learn of this Greek form of the name. One the the services Shaw does is set that mystical use straight chronologically. No one had ever done that before.

He shows how there is no basis for saying that mystical types used Ιαω until the end of the first century and early second century AD/CE. What is also significant is that Shaw not only postulates that the earliest, NT Christians used this form of the name, and that it was originally in some NT books, but that it was through the preaching work of those first-century Christians that the mystical types picked up on the name and started using it. In other words, this form of the name's best known usage by Gnostics and magicians came about through the zealous preaching work by the earliest Christians, and their using the name in that preaching. He does not state this in the main text but in two footnotes (p. 288 n. 53, 289 n. 57).

This is a fascinating discovery for at least three reasons. It explains why the mystical types suddenly began using that form of the name at the time that they did. It indicates the earliest Christians used the name so much that it became a feature in their preaching work, just like the brothers have been saying on the basis of passages like Acts 15:14. Finally, it provides a previously unknown picture of how the old devil set about, very early on, attacking Jehovah's name and having it removed from the scriptures.

One can wonder why Shaw buried this detail in footnotes instead of placing it in the main text. Perhaps the answer lies in the fact that is just too radical for other scholars to see and accept. This thought would be in harmony with his statement elsewhere, on p. 287, where he offers the idea that Ιαω likely occurred originally at Rom. 10. He states, "Naturally, this proposal may come as a radical thought to many who have considered the standard interpretation of Rom. 10.9-13 as definitive, and it may threaten a long-held view about this passage." That sort of encapsulates several other things about his book as well.

There are many other valuable things in the book, but now that JWI has had the opportunity to digest it, I thought the time was ripe to post some of my observations. Others are welcome to respond or post their own thoughts if they have read it, or are considering doing so.

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On 9/27/2018 at 5:03 AM, indagator said:

There are many other valuable things in the book, but now that JWI has had the opportunity to digest it, I thought the time was ripe to post some of my observations. Others are welcome to respond or post their own thoughts if they have read it, or are considering doing so.

I agree. It was well worth the read. Even though I had not read the book until now, the premise had been explained in material we had already been discussing here.  I should not have ignored that premise during earlier discussions of the Divine Name on this very forum where IAO [Yaho] came up. In one of those previous discussions, I rather quickly began discussing how that name had been used in the magical papyri and on charms and amulets. Somehow I had also assumed that these evolved from sources in and around Elephantine from where they began to make a quick and direct link to the "mystical" audience. I now agree with Shaw's logic that the actual earliest confirmed uses of a IAO in "magical" circles were timed mostly to the second and third centuries CE. Of course, these same circles were just as interested in using the name Jesus for "magical" purposes, a fact that already shows up in the NT/CGS. 

It would not be surprising, then, that Christianity in several of its early languages, used the divine name based on IAO "Yaho." The evidence for continuous use of a vocalized divine name by various groups and individuals is solid. We can see this from LXX evidence and several other sources from the centuries before and after the start of Christianity. The evidence is solid enough to build upon, including this idea about who could have spread the divine name widely enough so that mystic usage also began to quickly parallel the widespread growth of early Christianity.

While reading, I couldn't wait to get to points about whether the author thought the divine name was in the NT. I actually thought that I came up with some ideas about Revelation 1:8 and iota-alpha-omega myself, and wondered whether anyone else had done so, too. Turns out there was plenty of information on this very verse.

In light of the new October JW Broadcast, and the unusually lengthy amount of time spent on the topic of the restoration of the divine name in the Christian Greek Scriptures, I think that this book is ideal as a way to clear up several understandings and misunderstandings. I thought that the "clue" about the definite article in front of KYRIOS was interesting. It's in the NWT Study Bible, Appendix C3, as Bro Geoffrey Jackson explains. He explains it as if it were more like a hurried, accident or error when the NT includes Kyrios without the definite article. That's not the explanation that scholars would give for how it is used in the LXX (and, by extension, the NT).

In fact, it might be difficult to comprehend given our experience and explanation of the use of the definite article before theos in John 1:1. There we have:

  • No definite article in front of theos is translated "a god" (therefore the "Word" or "Christ") and with the article, "God."

But in the LXX the lack of a definite article can be seen (by some scholars) as a superlative, and some would want to see the usage in early Christian writing to therefore have it mean something like this: (although the data is inconsistent)

  • No definite article in front of kyrios is translated "The Lord" (therefore "God") and with the article, "Lord" can therefore refer to "Jesus" or "Christ."

A curious case of kyrios.

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On 7/18/2018 at 4:29 AM, JW Insider said:

What's interesting about the song, is that even after it was canonized in the album, Lightfoot looked into new evidence that had come to light, and which made Lightfoot's foot path grow brighter and brighter. 

This suggests that admin or someone might start a new thread dedicated to the urban legend of whether Gordon Lightfoot truly had light feet or not. He did not. However, he is related to a real estate magnate who truly did have square feet.

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4 minutes ago, JW Insider said:

LOL! Never heard of a real estate person yet who didn't have a 'square foot' fetish.

Yes. It was that anatomical anonomy that gave him an instinctive feel for his work, a modern-day survival of the fittest.

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