Facebook Discussions on Granville Sharp Rule

Steven Avery

PLAN: This and other material combined to a single paper

King James Bible Debate - May 29, 2014 - Topic Jude 1:5
Steven Avery - May 29, 2014

After the surrender by many believers of 1 Timothy 3:16 and the heavenly witnesses (remember the philosophy that doctrine should not be built on uncertain verses) the GSR became the favored way to get back some perceived Deity and Christological ammunition ... at the expense of inferior translation, supposedly correcting the pure AV.

Simply check the title of the Granville Sharp book:

"Remarks on the uses of the definitive article in the Greek text of the New Testament: containing many new proofs of the divinity of Christ, from passages, which are wrongly translated in the common English version."

You can see tit-for-tat approach stated point blank by:

Archibald Thomas Robertson (1863-1934)

The Greek Article and the Deity of Christ

"It is true that thus we have two passages added to the side of the Trinitarian argument to make up for the loss of 1 Timothy iii. 16 and 1 John v. 7-8."

Caveat: one could easily say that the "Deity of Christ" and "the Trinitarian argument" are combining what are not necessarily two equivalents.


To be fair to Sharp, he did defend "God was manifest in the flesh" in "A Tract on the Law of Nature and Principles of Action in Man" (1777 and p. 231 in the 1809 edition) by referencing the writings of John Berriman (1691-1768) and Johann Kasper Velthusen (1740-1814) as confuting "the cavils of the learned Wetstein" ... Johann Jakob Wetstein (1693–1754).

Often the Bible text discussions were much stronger in the 1700s and 1800s than today.

Granville Sharp Rule attack on the pure Bible
Steven Avery - June 9, 2014

Granville Sharp Rule attack on the pure Bible​
One of the areas, in addition to our recent studies on 1 Timothy 3:16, where modern pseudo-NT-grammarians (usually not Greek fluent .. compare to the AV learned men) mangle the English versions in order to try to supplant the pure AV with an English translation corruption is the "Granville Sharp rule". Today usually only applied to 2 verses, de facto saying that Sharp did not know his own rule, since he wanted to change up to 8 verses from the pure Bible text (common English version) by his rule.
We have had some of the most interesting discussion on this on a long thread on CARM. (Note that this is not the KJV section, it is the more productive Biblical Languages section.) Also note that the posters represent a wide variety of Bible text and doctrinal views.
(CARM loses inactive threads to a purge, usually after about a year of inactivity, so I try to make sure to post on this thread every few months, until it is eventually locked. Then all the good info can be saved before a purge.)
Today, researching 1 Timothy 3:16 I ran into some discussion by Erasmus on:
Titus 2:13
Looking for that blessed hope,
and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
with commentary by Robert Coogan, Professor at the University of Maryland.
You can see the post (RTF makes it easier reading than on Facebook) and the thread here:
CARM - Granville Sharp Rules
Erasmus, ECW and Reformation era analysis - Titus 2:13 before GSR
Steven Avery - 6-9-2014

James White and GSR

I thought the Granville Sharp section was truly tricky James. He does not tell the listerner than Eramsus, Bezae, Drusius and others had carefully considered the absence of an article long before the learned men of the AV looked at the verses, with varying emphasis on the grammatical ambiguity.

White also hides the fact that Granville Sharp (who apparently plagiarised from Hermanus Royaards, although that is still on the table) was dead wrong on the mass of supposed "Rule" applications where he wanted to changed the pure Bible (e.g. Ephesians 5:5, 1 Timothy 5:21, 2 Timothy 4:1, 2 Thessalonians 1:12). Thus, there was never a "Rule", at most a translational consideration, and that is why I call the whole thing the Granville Sharp Rule for Fools.

Steven Avery - Feb 15, 2016

And I actually put in a little post tonight on this topic tonight on badmanna (an interesting blog site.) For researchers, there is a lot on the "Granville Sharp Rules" thread on CARM .. that will eventually vanish from CARM.
(An interesting sidenote is the possibility, or likelihood, that Sharp actually plagairised a French work by Hermanus Royaards, John Pye Smith pointed out the earlier unacknowledged source around 1820.)
One tweak .. the key verse that was fudged by pseudo-defenders was more "God was manifest in the flesh.. " in 1 Timothy 3:16 .. than the heavenly witnesses, although both were involved. At least one GSR proponent even directly claimed it was a type of trade-off bargaining, sort of a Bible bizarre bazaar mentality. (I'll concede you two or more .. Acts 20:28 and others also come to play .. pure Bible verses, and then try to fabricate some others as a counter.)
What Billy writes above all looks accurate. Even though Will uses a hendiasys explanation (apparently from Colin Tyler c. 2002 originally) I consider that convenient, but not really the proper explanation. The grammatical savant can counter that in various ways.
And anybody can mangle by mistranslation the Bible text to make the Deity of Messiah clearer on specific verses, the Living Bible on John 1:1 is an example. The problem is .. false translation.
The identity retranslations of the GSR (Sharp had 8 plus one oddball additional flake mistranslation, Wallace reduced it to the 2 he thought might be defendable) are weak because they are translation manglings and lose the sense of the text. This is easily seen in verses like Ephesisans 5:5 (see e.g. the fine commentary of John Calvin) which Wallace kept as "undecided" in one of his books, but did not mangle in NetBible.
The problem with the modern translations it not that the GSR does not create a Deity identity translation .. it does. The problem is that the text is a grammatical mangling, poor translation, and does not properly represent the apostolic writings at the specific points. Both 2 Peter 1:1 and Titus 2:13 have their own special aspects, yet remain Bible text manglings when placed as an identity translation, the others given by Sharp are the more obvious manglings. (The only one that has even a tiny historical identity support in the ECW is Titus 2:13, 2 Peter 1:1 has zero, nothing. Ironically, Beza did give it some support, contra Erasmus, but it was artificial and rejected by the learned men of the AV. These issues were actually well known in the 1500s and 1600s, discussed by a number of solid Greek language writers, whose sections are mostly in Latin works. Remember, this was an age when the Bible scholars were often fully fluent in the classical languages.)
Stanely E. Porter was not fooled by Wallace, he ripped his stuff to shreds on the grammatical components. The savvy JWs and islamists who study the issue will easily rip White, Wallace and other GSR proponents to shreds. You can fool only some of the people some of the time.
Here is the single most important pure Bible verse, without controversy, in the NT, in 99%+ of the Greek mss. on the deity of Messiah (complementary to Isaiah 9:6):
1 Timothy 3:16
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness:
God was manifest in the flesh,
justified in the Spirit,
seen of angels,
preached unto the Gentiles,
believed on in the world, received up into glory.
This is the clear declaration of the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ, directly from the pure Bible text.
You should be aware that the Greek Critical Text does not even have "he" instead of God here. It has yet another solecism.. "who", with a grammatical mismatch. Some of the modern versions smooth the text (i.e. mangle in mistranslation) to come up with "He", which still is a long way from Bible purity. It is neither "God was manifest int he flesh .." nor is it proper Greek-->English translation, the resulting English "he" text lacks integrity, even to its own deficient source.

James White and his criticism of Titus 2:13 in the King James Bible
Steven Avery - May 27, 2016
The problem with the Granville Sharp verses (there are really eight of them, but six of them were abandoned ).. are interesting. Look up Ephesians 5:5 and the others.
Ephesians 5:5 could be mistranslated as Sharp requested, but it is poor translation, not reflecting Paul's flow, grammar and purpose and thereby destroying excellent commentary, including that of Calvin.
This is the general problem in all the verses. These are deliberate mistranslations for doctrinal purposes, by the people who gave up:

"God was manifest in the flesh"
(the strongest NT Christology / Deity verse) and wanted to get something back. The "tit-for-tat" aspect is actually given in some quotes, as if the word of God is a bargaining chip. Well you can have the heavenly witnesses, now I will claim Titus 2:13. The contras are not fools and easily show that this is mistranslation. It is a shame to Christian apologetics that faux translations are attempted to be foisted.
Keep in mind that if Paul had really wanted to use those verses to say "Jesus is God" grammatically it could have been done in a simple and direct manner, not hidden in arcane grammar interpretations "found" in 1800.
(Sharp likely plagarised his ideas from Royaards, as indicated by John Pye Smith. Wallace rejects all but two of the Sharp verses.)
I am hoping to write more on this:
A lot of the good information is on
Granville Sharp Rules
Which at the end points to:this thread too:
My position on all this is a different emphasis than AV defenders. The issue here is proper and accurate and majestic translation, attacked by a bogus "rule" full of special pleading exceptions (piles of them) and laughable analysis.
This is not a Greek grammar rule, it is a "New Testament Greek seminarian" attempt. We have the same tendency in articles in English .. an omitted article can indicate close connection, relationship, maybe identity, but then again often not. There is not any "rule".

Pure Bible
statistical absurdity attempts to defend the Daniel Wallace Granville Sharp amendments.
Steven Avery - Feb 16, 2016

statistical absurdity attempts to defend the Daniel Wallace Granville Sharp amendments.
There is a "Granville Sharp Rules" thread on CARM that can really help with a lot of GSR information.
One of the biggest absurdities in the GSR world was a paper done under the auspicies of Daniel Wallace, by a fellow named J. Ed Komoszewski. Looking at this paper can help you realize, if you do not already know, how bankrupt is the scholarship of Daniel Wallace and those who are his willing dupes.
And I had written about this on the thread, but I pulled out the five posts relating to the Komoszewski paper on one page.
Suggest posts 52, then 53-55 discussing the Komoszewski absurdity.