John 1:18 - only begotten Son - resources and discussion

Steven Avery

Administrator
John 1:18
No man hath seen God at any time;
the only begotten Son,
which is in the bosom of the Father,
he hath declared him.


Received Text discussion - 11-2018 - Excellent
https://www.facebook.com/groups/receivedtext/permalink/2143886612528377/

Facebook - PureBible 2014 summary of posts
https://www.facebook.com/groups/purebible/permalink/766737243418167/


sister threads

John 1:18 - Ehrman and Wallace ultra-modern competitive confusions
https://www.purebibleforum.com/index.php/threads/a.495 (Verse by Verse)

John 1:18 - only begotten Son - resources and discussion
https://www.purebibleforum.com/index.php/threads/a.918
..
 
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Steven Avery

Administrator
would John have used a nonexistent word?

Making up a new word.

Facebook - PureBible
https://www.facebook.com/groups/purebible/permalink/619819308109962/


"Reference to a non-existent word in order to establish the etymology and definition of another word does not inspire confidence in the application of true scholarship to the question at hand."

======================

The verse being referenced is :

John 1:18
No man hath seen God at any time;
the only begotten Son,
which is in the bosom of the Father,
he hath declared him.


The word in the Greek text (all versions) is:

monogenēs = μονογενὴς

====

The main hypothetical, ethereal word that is referenced by 20th century Critical Text support grammarians (who desired ways to avoid "only begotten God" ) is:

monogennetos

The problem is, there is no such word anywhere known in the Greek language! Supposedly, the apostle John would have used this non-existent word if he really wanted to write "only begotten"!

Amazing.

And I'll plan on giving you the history of this blunderama argument a bit later :).

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An additional irony.

They even hypothesized a second ethereal word for more similar jockeying for corruption:

monogennes

As part of the cornfuseniks contra argumentation.

=========================

The brainiacs who invented a brand new unknown word ... "monogennetos" .... in order to attack the pure AV were James Hope Moulton (1863-1917) and George Milligan (1860-1934)

The vocabulary of the Greek Testament illustrated from the papyri and other non-literary sources (1914)
James Hope Moulton and George Milligan

http://archive.org/stream/vocabularyofgree00mouluoft#page/416/mode/1up

They conjectured that if John wanted to say only-begotten they would use this word ... "monogennetos". Therefore monognes must mean something else than only begotten.

The big problem, nobody has ever demonstrated that such a word even exists!

This is so stupid.

====

Could you imagine someone saying:

"The word repentance in the AV does not mean to turn towards God. It must mean penance. If the translators wanted to give that sense of turning towards God, they would have used repentaturn."

Despite there never being any such word as "repentaturn".

This Moulton-Milligan idea is just as absurd.

========================

In 1983, John V. Dahms, writing in the:

New Testament Studies 29 (1983) 222-32, The Johannine Use of Monogenēs Reconsidered,
https://www.cambridge.org/core/jour...reconsidered/2C179DC616B7C37D9FE61997BC065CF6

Forum - 2008 post by Indigo Immortal
http://love.proboards.com/thread/338/almighty-god-yhwh-head-christ


pointed out, as gently as possible:


[QUOTE]In this connection it is to be noted that J. H. Moulton and G.Milligan, The Vocabulary of the New Testament, pp. 416-17, among others, state that 'only begotten' would be monogennetos, not monogenes. But, if the lexicon of Liddel, Scott and Jones may be trusted, monogennetos does not occur. The possibility must not be overlooked that it does not occur because monogenes was commonly used with the meaning that monogennetos would have had, if it had occurred. Moreover, even if monogennetos was used, this would not make the use of monogenes with a more of less synonymous meaning impossible. Etymology provides no objection to the meaning 'only begotten', it may even provide some support for it. But, of course, meaning is determined by usage, not by etymology."
========================

All sorts of wild and false claims have been made about this non-existent word "monogennetos"..

And dozens of modernist and contra-AV writers have used this fantasy word argument to say that our Bible is in error. Why? The blunder came from Moulton and Milligan. Then the blunder was enhanced in various ways.

Which simply shows you the corrupted state of today's scholarship.

The quote in the OP, referencing Dahms, is by Roderick L. Ross, 1989.

===================

Only Begotten and the Deity of Christ
A Review of Hugo McCord's paper - Only Begotten
Rod Ross
http://www.321biblestudy.net/OBDC_Monogenes.html
http://www.321biblestudy.net/OBDC_OnlyBegotten.html


Reference to a non-existent word in order to establish the etymology and definition of another word does not inspire confidence in the application of true scholarship to the question at hand.

The question is not what would another word mean, if there were such a word; but, what does the word used by the apostle John (monogenes) mean when used in reference to Christ? Even should there be such a word as monogennes or mongennetos, and even should it be defined as "only begotten," that does not mean that mongenes would not, could not, and does not mean "only begotten." John W. Dahms points this out in his article, "The Johannine Use of Monogenes Reconsidered" in New Testament Studies (April, 1983; pp. 222-232). The argument based upon mongennes (or mongennetos) is "begging the question." It is beside the point. The point is: What does mongenes mean?
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You can see that a second attempt at a bogus word was made with monogennes:

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Who uses this second bogus attempt to compare monogenes to another non-existent word? ... monogennes. The idea is similar, it got a little mileage.

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Similarly, James White tried to say that you can determine the meaning of the word by the number of nu's.


"The key element to remember in deriving the meaning of monogenēs is this: if is a compound term, combining monos, meaning only, with a second term. Often it is assumed that the second term is gennasthai/gennao, to give birth, to beget. But note that this family of terms has two nu's, vv rather than a single nu, v, found in monogenēs. This indicates that the second term is not gennasthai but gignesthai/ginomai, and the noun form, genos."
The Forgotten Trinity and The King James Only Controversy, 201-202.
An excellent example of a classic etymology fallacy.[/QUOTE]
 
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Steven Avery

Administrator
Facebook - Pure Bible Review

Facebook - Pure Bible Group
Steven Avery - March, 2015
https://www.facebook.com/groups/purebible/permalink/766737243418167/


John 1:18 (AV)
No man hath seen God at any time;
the only begotten Son,
which is in the bosom of the Father,
he hath declared him.


The dynamic of the net studies on Facebook has contributed to the understanding of how the modern version corruption arose and the overwhelming evidence here for the pure Bible reading. And has touched on some of the related translational questions.

This archive post will itself be archived at this url:

John 1:18 - Facebook discussions
https://www.facebook.com/groups/purebible/permalink/766737243418167/

============

First, a little recap of varying discussions held on the textualcriticism forum.

The new discussion is starting here:


... Prelude to Investigating John 1:18
James Snapp - March 11, 2015
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTTextualCriticism/permalink/829872030433132/

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Some research and discussion over the last six months on the textualcriticism forum.
Three earlier threads with a variety of topics.

Ehrman acknowledges that Alexandrian papyri ( eg. P66 P75) adds little
Steven Avery - Sept 3, 2014
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTT...k/715358528551150/?comment_id=716050758481927
(This thread also addressed how Ehrman would be more honest in the translation of 1 Timothy 3:16 than the Wallace and White types).

==========

John 1:18 - only begotten Son or God? - Greek ms. count
Steven Avery - Oct 6, 2014
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTTextualCriticism/permalink/733314530088883/

The question of the thread about ms count was repeated Oct 8, but never addressed:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTT...k/733314530088883/?comment_id=734609459959390
"We know specifically on the Mark ending that the count is about 1700 to 2. What is it in John 1:18? ** Is the count available? ** Does it require an expensive book or a library research? (Swanson, Text und Textwort )." - Steven Avery, Oct 8

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Alex Sacca, Cobbling is underway. ... In the meantime, here's Ezra Abbot's 1861 article
James Snapp - March 3, 2015
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTTextualCriticism/permalink/822246011195734/

"unusual interplay of doctrinal, historical, textual and translational and creedal components" - SA, March 4 (also ECW significance)
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTT...k/822246011195734/?comment_id=823958371024498

Ezra Abbot has three major articles on John 1:18 ... also Burgon on Valentinian/gnostic corruption connection
Steven Avery - March 5, 2015
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTT...k/822246011195734/?comment_id=824657450954590

James Drummond - Fenton Hort articles : Ellicott and Westcott comments
Steven Avery - March 5, 2015
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTT...k/822246011195734/?comment_id=824747677612234

Ezra Abbot on the doctrinal and orthodox doctrinal positions, Burgon on gnostic
Steven Avery - March 7, 2015
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTT...k/822246011195734/?comment_id=825108844242784

============

And on PureBible we had the following:

The brainiacs who invented a brand new unknown word ... "monogennetos"
Steven Avery - May, 2014
https://www.facebook.com/groups/purebible/permalink/619819308109962/

==============

Aramaic forum discussion - May, 2014.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/555618527865418/permalink/656370581123545/

==============

King James Bible Debate - April, 2014
SA - discussion of the translation history
https://www.facebook.com/groups/212...152035193836693/?comment_id=10152048083086693

King James Bible Debate - July, 2014
Doctrinal implications - Christology tit-for-tat trade idea
https://www.facebook.com/groups/212...152259266556693/?comment_id=10152264511961693
===============

Feel free to follow thoughts and ideas here. Let's keep open the possibility of a paper on the topic

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Steven Avery

Administrator
James Snapp essay on John 1:18 - The Case for ο μονογενης υιος in John 1:18

The Case for ο μονογενης υιος in John 1:18 - James Snapp

On John 1:18, the James Snapp Facebook NTTextualCriticism forum has a wealth of good material archived, much of which is above in terms of the urls, and can use extraction and presentation.

Here is the James Snapp essay, maybe meant to be updated, that James Snapp posted for feedback and discussion. And I don't think his forum has had much on the verse since 2015. And I am blocked on that forum, but it would be nice if this was kept on the warm burner, maybe the paper has improvements and additions.

Our key topic on this paper is that (only begotten) SON is correct, GOD is wrong.

John 1:18 (AV)
No man hath seen God at any time;
the only begotten Son,
which is in the bosom of the Father,
he hath declared him.


The translation issues you can find on this forum, although James does support the true translation as well, using the Michael Marlowe material. So he is fine on both major textual analysis food groups, underlying text and proper translation. Often a writer is right on one, and wrong or equivocal on the other.

And I have a number of improvement comments, some are on the NTTextualCriticism thread, others might have some as well.


Facebook - NT Textual Criticism
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NTTextualCriticism/permalink/857375884349413/
April 18, 2015
Here's my essay on the variant-unit in John 1:18. It's not quite finished and I haven't embedded the links, but I wanted to post it in its draft-form just to have /something/ to show after a month of intensive research and analysis.
Group-members are invited to download this draft and offer criticisms, corrections, and suggestions for improvements.

The Case for ο μονογενης υιος in John 1:18
James Snapp, Jr. – April 2015
Preface
https://www.facebook.com/download/1419011485074364/John 1 18 Defense of UIOS April 18 2015.doc?hash=Acqz_z0mgkLamRy6
maybe alternative
https://lookaside.fbsbx.com/file/John 1 18 Defense of UIOS April 18 2015.doc?token=AWzdqe1LsOxl5ZhnIYJzqG364XftqgHuYhgvuNNaGCU_naT1rSD1cdnB4dVLNDS3oC-HPRqwZ1Ch3Z8Fnpe0NRXiB510_3Yvu1UffF3FrvY_YB_tem9qJFZOcTyksusHdJotfsiUaXHN6sufsZH_phoG
Facebook facing thread.

Pure Bible
https://www.facebook.com/groups/purebible/permalink/766737243418167/?comment_id=2044814438943768&comment_tracking={"tn":"R"}
This essay should be the very best single source material for the early church writer references, augmented by my comments. A review and summary is planned.


Steven Avery .
The Valentinian reference from Irenaeus makes sense as an (allusion) in the apparatus due to it being too early to be picking up established ECW or creedal or confessional phrasing. This is similar to how (Tert) should be an apparatus entry for the heavenly witnesses.
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Looking at p. 9-10, James gives additional info on this, which tends to confirm. There is a bit of turnabout here, as some supporters of "only begotten God" would rather not see the earliest support to be from the gnostic Valentinians (which was emphasized by Burgon.) as it fits well with the idea of a deliberate (or what I would call a semi-deliberate) corruption.
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===============
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Are the 11 writers with 39 citations, in the fog dissipated section, all linked to our verse? e.g with the bosom of the father directly referenced? I see many are, however are there a number not?
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"Against the Manichaeans" - McReynolds treats one of these references as support for θεός, and the other as support for υἱός" .
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And I don't see the support for θεός being proper for the first ref, the only begotten Son of God is more naturally an expansion from "the only begotten Son" than from "the only begotten God". Lacking some missing reasoning, that would indicate some skewing by McReynolds. See Irenaeus, Against Heresies, Book 3, 11:5-6, given later by James.
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===============
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James Snapp
"Thus, the text adopted in UBS4 and NA27 is attested in .3% of the extant Greek manuscripts. Here, as elsewhere, one may sense the inconsistency of those who speak of “an embarrassment of riches” in the church’s textual treasury and then proceed to declare 99.7% of the coins to be counterfeit."
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This is a powerful point. The way Wallace and White (Geisler, McDowell, Strobel, etc.) handle this is always to place one shell on the table, followed by the other, so you don't know which one really is on the table. Such word-parsing is part of their shell game. I have never, ever, seen Wallace or any parrot address this point.
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The specific phrase itself has been emphasized by Daniel Wallace, who rather consistently goes with the under 1% and ultra-minority variants, as in Mark 1:41, John 1:18, 1 Timothy 3:16 and dozens or hundreds of variants, even to a video “The Basics of New Testament Textual Criticism” Video 2: “An Embarrassment of Riches)." What is a sad commentary on the current art and science is that, other than James Snapp , these gentlemen get a free pass from textual writers. Even Ehrman, who could make hay, is partially paralyzed because they generally agree together on the ultra-minority reading.
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Superb section on Irenaeus.
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=================
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Hippolytus as early as 190, interesting. –
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Note: Irenaeus, Tertullian and Hippolytus are the three ultra-early with the majority text. Thus the latest date for the bifurcation of the textline has to be seen as early 2nd century, with Origen and Clement of Alexandria mostly on the minority side.
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=================
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Papyrus 66 and 75, early dating "under a cloud", although James likes to stick with the early idea. Since they are significant in the modern resistance to dumping Hort's text, the minority position, and since they are either covered by Brent Nongbri (P66) or specifically planned (per correspondence, and with similar elements) I think the redating controversy has to be mentioned more directly than currently in the paper.
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=================
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Since Phoebadius of Agen is good to show the doctrinal thicket, let's point out another verse where he weighs in, as similarly given by Jerome:
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The Lord says, I will ask of my Father, and He will give you another advocate." (John xiv. 16) Thus, the Spirit is another from the Son as the Son is another from the Father ; so, the third person is in the Spirit, as the second, is in the Son. All, however, are one God, because the three are one, (tres unum sunt.)
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hmmmmm
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"Here, 1 John v. 7, is evidently connected, as a scriptural argument, with John xiv. 16." - William Hales, writing on the Sabellian Controversy.
http://books.google.com/books?id=Ni4ZAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA59
https://books.google.com/books?id=yjMHAAAAQAAJ&pg=RA1-PA238
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Remember, the circular argument that Jerome did not know of the heavenly witnesses, is used contra the Vulgate Prologue, where he directly, first-person, declares how the verse was omitted by translators (scribes.)
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==================
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returning to:
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John 1:18 (AV)
No man hath seen God at any time;
the only begotten Son,
which is in the bosom of the Father,
he hath declared him.
.
===================
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James Snapp
"the Greek manuscripts for υἱός outnumber the Greek manuscripts for θεός, 1,626 versus 7 – a proportion of approximately 232:1. (It is no wonder that advocates of the Alexandrian reading do not want the manuscript-count to be mentioned, and therefore bury it beneath the term Byz in their apparatus.)"
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Again a powerful point. Not even an estimate, although T&T gives the exact numbers. In the public arena, where this is little understood, their hiding is quite effective, and they even hid it more by changing Byz to M.
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Remember, too that Nestle-Aland even hides the uncial count with a second order mumbo-jumbo, despite the fact that, if they really wanted to hide the specific 10 or so unicals, they could simply make a new symbol-number combo like 9uM .. meaning 9 more uncials.
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===================
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From p. 11 to the top of p. 15, you are discussing a common Hortian Defense League technique of looking for dribbles of evidence in various lines or geography locations to claim widespread attestation. This is so obviously a special pleading attempt (by Wright here, or by Metzger or any parrot) that I will pass it by. Although there was some interesting discussion on Sinaiticus and I was not aware that the Harklean text, which is quite Byzantine, was prepared in Alexandrian, showing that the Alexandrian text was already fading into the woodwork.
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===================
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James Snapp
“One can be sure,” Wright wrote, “that John 1.18 is in view if μονογενὴς θεός, with or without the article, is read.”
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How often do they fail Logic 101, even when warned by earlier writers? (Abbot covered this carefully.) Even if we accept that the originating source was John 1:18, all that means is that the phrase had, from the second century bifurcation, come into ECW usage. No more, no less.
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The later usage does NOT testify to the ms in front of the writer! Logic 101. Even McReynolds gets an F here. All this is especially true when we realize the phrase was in the gnostic and Arian discussions, and the orthodox who had an eternally-begetting doctrine could be quite happy with the "only-begotten God".
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The most you could ever claim would be (allusion) but even that would be improper in these special circumstances. One exception I noted above, a 2nd century reference, Irenaeus talking of the Valentinian doctrine, since it would be before the common usage by other church writers. That would sensibly make an (allusion.)
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James is fully on top of all this:
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"The problem with such an assumption is that the term “only-begotten God” was a common moniker for Christ in theological discussions, differentiating between the unbegotten Father and the begotten Logos while maintaining that both share the same nature as God."
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Followed by further exposition and quoting Ezra Abbot. (p. 15-16).
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===================
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The Epistle of Hymenaeus (the Synod of Antioch) is incredibly important, since it represents many bishops writing as a team, and is 3rc-century. This effectively tips the Ante-Nicene ECW rather significantly toward "only-begotten Son".
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Similarly the next period, around 300-350, see p. 16, with many references more than balancing over Eusebius and Didymus, allowing their significance, and that there was quite a split still.
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==================
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(continues)
James Snapp
"In light of this demonstration that Arius and the Arian ringleaders of the 300’s were entirely comfortable referring to Jesus as the only-begotten God, it is rather baffling to find modern apologists treating the reading “only-begotten God” as if it is a bulwark against Arianism. (See, for example, the statement at https://bible.org/seriespage/john-1 that the statement that John 1:18 with “only-begotten God” is “a strong affirmation of the full and complete deity of Jesus!”) On the contrary: the Arians of the 300’s preferred this reading. "
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A third salient editorial point, very worth careful note. Our modern textual writers, so engrossed in the minutiae of the hortian defense, severely lack the basics of Church History 101. They also suffer from an ailment of seeing the early centuries through hard-coded modern glasses.
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Now, to be fair, the originator of this blunder does seem to be Samuel Tregelles, as pointed out by Abbot. (You might want to read Theodore Letis,The Ecclesiastical Text, as he touches on the many ironies which abound, in an article directly on John 1:18.) It would be an interesting study on its own account, how did "only begotten God" get misread by so many as a wonderful deity affirmation potential scripture?
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==================
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James Snapp
Wright’s proposal that “one would have to assume that each scribe that changed υἱός to θεός knew about the Arian controversy and knew how to change the text to the higher Christology” makes no sense in light of this observation, inasmuch as changing the text from υἱός to θεός would essentially constitute the adoption of the Arians’ text, and would not necessitate any “higher Christology.” (p. 18).
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Here James is right about the Christological "facts on the ground".
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Yet even putting that aside, Wright is strecthing mind-reading way beyond any possible sense. With a split text-line, which we know existed in the early 2nd-century, as split ECW commentaries by the year 200, changes could be made either way for a myriad of reasons.
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===================
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Nice section on the Peshitta (p. 18-19). It would be interesting to have Paul Younan respond to Jeff Childers contention that the (of) is not warranted. (p. 18-19). Similar with the claim that "only-begotten" is not warranted. While Childers may be a grammarian, I tend to doubt that he is fluent in the language in the manner of Paul Younan. (Whatever we think of his Aramaic Primacy theories, I have not seen him stumble on dialect and language issues.)
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James Snapp
"The Source of Μονογενὴς Θεός
The preceding survey of the manuscript evidence, versional evidence, and patristic evidence reveals that no obstacle stands in the way of the theory that μονογενὴς θεός originated in Egypt in the mid-100’s, and spread from there as individuals from Egypt (Origen, and later, Arius) popularized their own texts. The term itself was an attractive reading to some orthodox readers, such as Epiphanius, especially after the article was added. "
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Excellent.
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James Snapp
" It could be interpreted as a statement of the full divinity of Christ (just as some of its advocates interpret it nowadays, treating the words μονογενὴς and θεός appositively, so as to yield the rendering, “The only-begotten, being God”)."
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Do we have specific examples of this being done in the early centuries? If not, it is only a modern reinterpretation.
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====================
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James Snapp
" Despite some commentators’ assertion that μονογενὴς θεός is the more difficult variant, the question is, on the premise that it is original, would it be so difficult that any Christian copyist would feel obligated to alter it? I think the answer is No, because if it were original, it would have been received by Christians as a valid expression of Johannine doctrine."
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And, on the other hand you have the cup half-empty syndrome. It can be so difficult, or more specifically non-Johannine that it should be seen as not his writing. This was covered by one commentator well. If I find it, I shall return!. (here)
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=======================
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James Snapp
"An impetus for a change from ὁ μονογενὴς υἱός to μονογενὴς θεός did exist, however, in Egypt among the Valentinians of the mid-100’s: a desire to recast the Gospel of John as a promoter of Valentinian concepts. The Gnostics of the second century, via their recruitment of the apostles’ names with which to cloak their own new composition, showed that they had no compunctions about creating whole books in the names of Christ’s close associates. Having committed such literary felonies, the alteration of a few phrases in the opening chapter of John’s Gospel would be a misdemeanor in comparison."
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Amen!
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John William Burgon
"We now reach a most remarkable instance. It will be remembered that St. John in his grand preface does not rise to the full height of his sublime argument until he reaches the eighteenth verse. He had said (ver. 14) that the ‘Word was made flesh,’ &c.; a statement which Valentinus was willing to admit. But, as we have seen, the heresiarch and his followers denied that ‘the Word’ is also ‘the Son’ of God. As if in order to bar the door against this pretence, St. John announces (ver. 18) that ‘the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him’: thus establishing the identity of the Word and the Only begotten Son. What else could the Valentinians do with so plain a statement, but seek to deprave it? Accordingly, the very first time St. John i. 18 is quoted by any of the ancients, it is accompanied by the statement that the Valentinians in order to prove that the ‘only begotten’ is ‘the Beginning,’ and is ‘God,’ appeal to the words,—‘the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father ... I have gone into all these strange details,—derived, let it be remembered, from documents which carry us back to the former half of the second century,—because in no other way is the singular phenomenon which attends the text of St. John i. 18 to be explained and accounted for. "
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Allowing that "no other way" is a bit overstated, the point is solid.
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The Causes of the Corruption of the Traditional Text of the Holy Gospels (1896) p. 215-216
John William Burgon .. edited by Edward Miller
http://books.google.com/books?id=c3VCAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA215
http://m.ccel.org/ccel/burgon/corruption.iii.xvii.html
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James Snapp
"The third edition of the UBS-GNT listed Valentinians-according-to-Irenaeus-and-Clement among the witnesses for μονογενὴς θεός; this listing has been discreetly removed in the fourth edition"
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hmmmm. Would a criterion of embarrassment affect and infect the apparatus? Any other explanations?
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James continues very effectively here (p. 19-21). I will point out that the similar questions with the heavenly witnesses also need proper study!
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Everything in these pages is interesting, including the theory that the change was two-step (omission of Son, then addition of God to fill lacuna), "perceived that a noun was needed after ὁ μονογενὴς, so he added θεός – not with dishonest intent, but as a sincere attempt to salvage a mistake in his exemplar" - which however is only one of a few reasonable conjectures.
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James Snapp
"when a scribe who was trained in an Alexandrian grammar-school realized that ὁ μονογενὴς and θεός could be read appositively, as “The Only-begotten, being God,”
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I contend, again, that you have to show this directly from ECW writings.
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"An accidental interchange of nomina sacra – ΘΣ replacing ΥΣ – cannot be altogether ruled out. "
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Without going into the details right now, I think you are making this seem difficult, when it is very possible.
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===================
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(continues)

Steven Avery .
On p. 21 we have the Galatians 2:20 textual analogy:
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Galatians 2:20 (AV)
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live;
yet not I, but Christ liveth in me:
and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith
of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
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where P46 and Vaticanus and some other evidences support "God and Christ" instead of "Son of God".
http://www.laparola.net/greco/index.php?rif1=55&rif2=2:20
.
And what do we find? One writer who tries to support this as possibly authentical is .. Brian Wright! (Earlier, Tregelles, recently, Peter M. Head and Jerom van Ness.)
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Jesus as Θεός (God): A Textual Examination (2007)
Brian Wright
https://bible.org/.../jesus-θεός-god...
http://books.google.com/books?id=838A8BDUI5kC&pg=PA254
.
Dirk Jongkind showed that Victorinus-Rome is misplaced.
http://evangelicaltextualcriticism.blogspot.co.uk/.../gal...
,
My conjecture .. this is a Daniel Wallace hope to change the Bible, much like Ehrman and Wallace have been angling for Jesus afraid in Mark 1:41.
.
Keep in mind that translationally you could easily have:
.
"faith in God, and Christ who loved me..."
.
thereby taking it out of the identity verses. Even Wallace disclaims his GSR based on Christ being a proper name.
.
=================
.
Aland properly pointed out that, contra Metzger, all Ante-Nicene papyri text-typing is dubious by anachronism. (Now we also have the redating issue.)
,
This should be noted in the convoluted "Western + Alexandrian" argumentation that we are seeing here and there. It is similar to the Hortian neutral text shell-game.
.
=================
.
A Possible Implication of the Genuineness of ὁ μονογενὴς υἱός
p. 21-22 - a good read.
.
=================
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p. 22-24 The version babble in translation of CT.
.
excellent
.
James Snapp
"Whether based on ὁ μονογενὴς θεός or μονογενὴς θεός or ὁ μονογενὴς υἱός, all of these recent translations and paraphrases, except for the New American Standard Bible, have something other than “only-begotten” in their text to represent μονογενὴς. "
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Yes, however it should be noted that the literal Emphasized and the New World Translation were willing to translate accurately as well.
.
James Snapp
"As McReynolds observed in 1981, Bible translators “have repeatedly rejected the θεός reading.” This is not really a matter of rejecting the Greek base-text; rather, translators have taken special liberties to avoid using the expression, “an only-begotten God,” which is what the UBS/Nestle-Aland text means"
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Excellent analysis of an important McReynolds error.
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Nice segue to the superb Michael Marlowe material (which can be augmented by a few additional resources). You only touch on it a little, understandably, considering the emphasis has been on external and doctrinal.
.
==================
Steven
Since the actual uncial detail is only available with Text und Textwert, rather than the NA apparatus, it would be helpful to have the paper give the uncial count, and, even better, also include a line for the uncial details for each variant. The differences will be in "only begotten Son" where many of the uncials are "second order" and thereby omitted from the NA apparatus.
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(Is this apparatus rigging? A point where I may disagree with some friends in emphatically saying yes.)
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There is often a real close uncial split on variants that are, overall, ultra-minority Alexandrian CT vs. Byzantine-TR. And this will be emphasized by the CT side. When the uncials are massively (e.g. 85%-90%) for the Byz text, the apparatus apparatchiks and the commentary writers will omit this, as well as the overall 98.5% type of number.
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Thanks!

===========================================

Let us switch to Letis. James, I would venture to say, is very close in agreement with Letis, without the benefit of having seen his analysis.
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"The prologue of John and the Egyptian manuscripts : John 1:18 as a case study in the canonical approach"
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Published in: "The ecclesiastical text : text criticism, biblical authority, and the popular mind" 1997 and 2nd edition, 2000, p. 107-132
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It is hard to do extracts, I am tempted to do page after page. Anyway. (For the techie details he uses McReynolds and UBS, and Abbot is referenced as well, more on the doctrinal aspect.)
.
===

Steven Avery .
The question arises, if the Egyptian reading fell out of use in the Greek texts produced from about the 4th century on (after the ascendency of Nicene christology) how is it that the reading was revived in the 19th century, thus prompting Ezra Abbot, the Unitarian, to crusade against the Egyptian reading, which one would expect him to be defending if it had a history of offering support for a heterodox, or indeed, an heretical, non-Trinitarian christology? (p. 120)
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SA: Letis is the only writer who notes the ironies here!
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VII. The Nineteenth-Century Debate Regarding John 1:18 (p. 120)
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SA: p. 120-125 is a masterful discussion of Tregelles, Abbot, Drummond and Hort, with more on the Valentinians, a sidestep to Ehrman's dismissal of the "neutral text", and a bit about Büchsel, Bubb, Harnack and others. Burgon comes in on p. 125.
.
===
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In the introduction, Letis made an important point:
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"I will then offer an history of exegesis of the passage in question, which should provide a much greater insight into the how and why of contemporary text critical consensus on the possible variants at this place (a method, I might add, not always employed in a traditional text critical study)." (p.107)
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And to that understatement and assessment, I give a hearty amen.
.
===
.
Returning to Burgon, after pointing out that Alford, Wordsworth and Scrivener resisted the move to the Egyptian reading:
.
"Burgon, in fact, so far as I can tell, was the first English scholar to suggest openly the connection between the Egyptian reading and the Valentianians" (p. 125)
.
"These few voices were silenced by the epochal edition of Westcott and Hort .. B. B. Warfield, brought the Egyptian reading acceptance among the orthodox in America" (p. 126)
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(However, Burgon's actual major writing on the verse actually came by Edward Miller after Hort and Warfield.)
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VIII - The Contemporary Discussion
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UBS, Metzger . etc.
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"Allen Wikgren ... one of the very few minority notes in the Textual Commentary" (p. 126)
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Letis goes into very different accounts of the discussion, when he tried to learn more, given by Metzger and Allen Wikgren.
.
"And so we see the twentieth-century debate has lost none of the heat from the original nineteenth-century discussions" (p. 127)
.
A bit of an overstatement, since, except for Letis and the recent efforts here, and earlier related articles and discussions involving Tim Dunkin and Tim Warner and James Snapp, we are largely in pablum-land.
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VIII - John 1:18 and the Canonical Approach
.
Brevard S. Childs .. "Burgon sensed that a theological dimension of the textus receptus was not being handled in the critical approach of Hort. .. (p. 128) SA: Then, we have the perfunctory criticism by Childs of both Burgon and Majority Text and TR advocates, mentioning Hodges, Pickering, Fuller. (p. 129)
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That is all I will extract from the Letis-->Childs summary
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Conclusions (p. 130-132).
.
Nicely done. For now I am only going to include the final footnote, since it is a part of the Snapp-Avery dialog.
.
===
.
"D.A. Fennema has made a gallant effort to give the Egyptian reading an orthodox interpretation that Tregelles would have applauded.
"For the theme of the Prologue, summed up in 1.18 and explicated throughout the Gospel, proves to be this: He who has revealed God the Father is none other than 'God the only Son,'" ....
But this smacks of reading Nicaea back into the text of the Gospel and ignores the Arian use and interpretation of the phrase. Furthermore, if the early church had seen that the phrase bore such a meaning, effortlessly in tenor with Nicaea, surely the Egyptian reading would have triumphed and not the "received" reading instead.
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SA: While the final sentence is unsound as overdone conjecture, the basis thought-wave is sound. And notice above, similarly, I challenged James to find any ECW who used μονογενὴς θεός as a Deity defense verse.
.
================
.
And I am going to make a point, once again, that is always missed by the many modern non-logicians who write on textual matters. The Valentinians could have ran with the "only-begotten God" reading by pouncing on even one little corrupted ms. Accidental and deliberate are not neatly divided by a Chinese Wall. A minor corruption becomes a viable variant by a specific doctrinal favoring as a textual flavoring. Wake up, Wallace, Ehrman et al.
.

================
This essay has as its goal a very specific application of the method of exegesis advocated by Brevard Childs, and termed by him the "canonical approach" p. 107
II Text Critical Data and Analysis (p. 108)
The reason the Egyptian reading has less patristic support, but nearly as many citations as the received reading, is because the McReynolds has allowed allusions and non-direct references to this reading to be counted while disallowing this for the received reading, but provides his rationale for doing so. This was a major point of contention during the nineteenth-century stage of the debate surrounding this passage. (footnote, p .109)
.
"versional evidence .. υἱός ... earliest Syriac versions and is at the very heart of Western catholic ecclesiastical usage, as witnessed by nearly all of the old Latin and all of the Vulgate witnesses, but two. .. the Byzantine Greek MSS and lectionaries of the Greek Church, one finds in this variant the comprehensive and exclusive affirmation of both Eastern and Western ecclesiastical traditions. This was, in fact, the "received reading" in the very widest sense of the concept. p. 110
.
III Gnostic Use of the Gospel of John (p. 110)
.. "we might expect the Gnostics to modify the canonical books, bringing them in line with their major motifs" p. 111
"evidence from Origen that Heracleon altered John's Gospel in the Prologue" p. 112
...
IV Coptic Manuscripts of the Gospel of John: Their Influence on the Greek MSS
... Herman C. Hoskier, who provided the world with the most exhaustive collation ... Codices B and Aleph.. came to the conclusion that both uncials were produced in Egypt and were much affected by bilingual texts containing a Coptic translation. .. Bohairic version .. seventh century, Hoskier, standing nearly alone, made bold to claim it was much earlier, a claim now accepted with the discovery of the Bodmer MS of John... 78 places, in the Gospel of John alone, where he believes either B, or Aleph, or both, have been brought into conformity to the Coptic versions. (p. 113)
... Ruffis L. Moretz ... B and P75,.. the Coptic has a slightly greater affinity with P75.. This may mean a nearer and earlier link with the Coptic. p. 114
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C. J. Bleeker and others maintain, "Christian gnosticism arrived there [in Egypt earlier than the orthodox church" .. indebted to ancient Egyptian religion. (p. 114) (SA note: Also see Aland's warning about the localized papyri and early Egyptian gnosticism)
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In the Gospel of John there appears to be a collusion between the Coptic texts of John and the Greek Egyptian witnesses ... The reason Gnostic scribes would have altered these passages in their scripture, whether the Coptic MSS, or the Greek, can be found in the Gnostic understanding of the prologue of John's Gospel (p. 115)
.
V Gnostic Exegesis of John''s Prologue (p. 115)
(Elaine Pagels and Jacqueline A. Williams help explain Valentinian gnosticism)
. .. "one of the major points defended by both Clement and Irenaeus was the identification of the Son and the Logos as the same person. Yet they make no attempt to challenge μονογενὴς θεός, the variant at 1:18 which, I will argue, allows for a separation between the Logos and the Son. Why?" (p. 117)
.
VI John 1:18 and the History of Exegesis in the Patristic Era (p. 118)
"Is it possible that the language totally uncharacteristic of John .. of the entire N.T., μονογενὴς θεός, could be a Valentinian emendation? ...
Futhermore, this was the reading preferred by Arius...(p. 118, here Abbot comes in more)
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Bultmann is sadly perfunctory and less than helpful (p.119)
.
===
The question arises, if the Egyptian reading fell out of use in the Greek texts produced from about the 4th century on (after the ascendency of Nicene christology) how is it that the reading was revived in the 19th century, thus prompting Ezra Abbot, the Unitarian, to crusade against the Egyptian reading, which one would expect him to be defending if it had a history of offering support for a heterodox, or indeed, an heretical, non-Trinitarian christology? (p. 120)
.
SA: Letis is the only writer who notes the ironies here!
.
VII. The Nineteenth-Century Debate Regarding John 1:18 (p. 120)
.
SA: p. 120-125 is a masterful discussion of Tregelles, Abbot, Drummond and Hort, with more on the Valentinians, a sidestep to Ehrman's dismissal of the "neutral text", and a bit about Büchsel, Bubb, Harnack and others. Burgon comes in on p. 125.
.
===
.
In the introduction, Letis made an important point:
.
"I will then offer an history of exegesis of the passage in question, which should provide a much greater insight into the how and why of contemporary text critical consensus on the possible variants at this place (a method, I might add, not always employed in a traditional text critical study)." (p.107)
.
And to that understatement and assessment, I give a hearty amen.
.
===
.
Returning to Burgon, after pointing out that Alford, Wordsworth and Scrivener resisted the move to the Egyptian reading:
.
"Burgon, in fact, so far as I can tell, was the first English scholar to suggest openly the connection between the Egyptian reading and the Valentianians" (p. 125)
.
"These few voices were silenced by the epochal edition of Westcott and Hort .. B. B. Warfield, brought the Egyptian reading acceptance among the orthodox in America" (p. 126)
.
(However, Burgon's actual major writing on the verse actually came by Edward Miller after Hort and Warfield.)
.
VIII - The Contemporary Discussion
.
UBS, Metzger . etc.
.
"Allen Wikgren ... one of the very few minority notes in the Textual Commentary" (p. 126)
.
Letis goes into very different accounts of the discussion, when he tried to learn more, given by Metzger and Allen Wikgren.
.
"And so we see the twentieth-century debate has lost none of the heat from the original nineteenth-century discussions" (p. 127)
.
A bit of an overstatement, since, except for Letis and the recent efforts here, and earlier related articles and discussions involving Tim Dunkin and Tim Warner and James Snapp, we are largely in pablum-land.
.
VIII - John 1:18 and the Canonical Approach
.
Brevard S. Childs .. "Burgon sensed that a theological dimension of the textus receptus was not being handled in the critical approach of Hort. .. (p. 128) SA: Then, we have the perfunctory criticism by Childs of both Burgon and Majority Text and TR advocates, mentioning Hodges, Pickering, Fuller. (p. 129)
.
That is all I will extract from the Letis-->Childs summary
.
Conclusions (p. 130-132).
.
Nicely done. For now I am only going to include the final footnote, since it is a part of the Snapp-Avery dialog.
.
===
.
"D.A. Fennema has made a gallant effort to give the Egyptian reading an orthodox interpretation that Tregelles would have applauded.
"For the theme of the Prologue, summed up in 1.18 and explicated throughout the Gospel, proves to be this: He who has revealed God the Father is none other than 'God the only Son,'" ....
But this smacks of reading Nicaea back into the text of the Gospel and ignores the Arian use and interpretation of the phrase. Furthermore, if the early church had seen that the phrase bore such a meaning, effortlessly in tenor with Nicaea, surely the Egyptian reading would have triumphed and not the "received" reading instead.
.
SA: While the final sentence is unsound as overdone conjecture, the basis thought-wave is sound. And notice above, similarly, I challenged James to find any ECW who used μονογενὴς θεός as a Deity defense verse.
.
================
.

And I am going to make a point, once again, that is always missed by the many modern non-logicians who write on textual matters. The Valentinians could have ran with the "only-begotten God" reading by pouncing on even one little corrupted ms. Accidental and deliberate are not neatly divided by a Chinese Wall. A minor corruption becomes a viable variant by a specific doctrinal favoring as a textual flavoring. Wake up, Wallace, Ehrman et al.
.
================
 
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Steven Avery

Administrator
Deep in the Weeds on MONOGENES and Eternal Generation
November 30, 2016
Denny Burk
https://www.dennyburk.com/deep-in-the-weeds-on-monogenes-and-eternal-generation/
As I mentioned in a previous post, Lee Irons has undertaken a research project that has made a decisive case for “only-begotten” as the meaning of MONOGENES in John’s writings. But before I ever saw that research, the above lines of argument are what convinced me that Moody’s arguments do not hold up to the evidence. For that reason, I think that scholars who have based their opinion of MONOGENES on the arguments of Dale Moody or on the entry in BDAG need to reevaluate their position. Those who view the doctrine of eternal generation as speculative and as having little biblical warrant need to reevaluate as well.

t turns out that the Nicene Fathers knew Greek really well—probably better than any of us reading the New Testament today. I think that the interplay between MONOGENES and GENNAO in the Creed shows that the Nicene Fathers noticed the interplay of those same terms in John’s writings. They were interpreting the Greek Bible in the Creed, and they were and are right. Jesus is the uniquely generated Son of God, begotten, not made, before all ages.
Lee Irons has posted a summary of his unpublished paper on MONOGENES
November 23, 2016
https://www.dennyburk.com/lee-irons...published-paper-on-monogenes-sharperiron-tgc/

Just a quick follow-up on my last post. Lee Irons has posted a summary of his unpublished paper at The Gospel Coalition website. Obviously, there is much more to his argument than what is included in a single blog post. Still, you can see the broad outlines of his work there.

I should also mention that the paper that convinced Grudem to change his view is nearly two years old. Lee has collected even more evidence and data since 2014, and the case for “only-begotten” has gotten even more compelling as a result. The results of that research will appear in a forthcoming volume edited by Fred Sanders and Scott Swain, Retrieving Eternal Generation (Zondervan, 2017).

In Lee’s TGC summary, he is careful to point out that the interpretation of MONOGENES is but one exegetical proof for the doctrine of eternal generation. The doctrine is rooted in a broad array of texts covering the canon of scripture. Having said that, MONOGENES appears in the Nicene Creed as a linchpin. The Nicene Fathers appear to give it special prominence in their formulations. Just one example of this outside the creed, I’ve been reading St. Basil the Great’s “On the Holy Spirit,” and he repeatedly refers to the Son as the “only-begotten” or the “only-begotten God.” The interpretation of MONOGENES was a crux in 4th century formulations of the trinity.

I cannot overstate how entrenched the non-generative rendering is among New Testament scholars. For that reason, I expect a lot of scholarly back-and-forth on this question over the next few years. But I think Lee’s argument will eventually carry the day. The evidence is overwhelming.
UPDATE: Dan Wallace has written a brief response to Lee’s TGC article. Three quick thoughts on Wallace’s remarks:

(1) Wallace thinks the term’s use with “offspring” language is evidence against its being generative. Why? Because it’s tautological. That is not a very compelling argument. The NT is filled with pleonastic expressions. I don’t think this objection is going to be very convincing.

(2) Lee is not engaging in the etymological fallacy. On this point, it would be helpful to read Lee’s full paper in light of Moody’s 1953 article, which set the terms of the present discussion. Lee brings up the etymological argument because that is at the heart of Moody’s contention about the meaning of the term. Lee is showing that the etymological situation is not what Moody described it to be. And Lee is exactly right about that. In other words, if an etymological argument tilts in anyone’s favor, it tilts in the direction of “only-begotten.”

(3) Everyone would do well to remember what the root fallacy is. The root fallacy is not that words never reflect the meanings of their component parts but that they may not necessarily reflect the meanings of their component parts (see D. A. Carson, Exegetical Fallacies, pp. 28, 32). Some words do (butter-knife), and some words don’t (butterfly). The question at hand is to what extent MONOGENES may reflect the meanings of its components (MONO “only” + GENES “kind” or “begotten”) and whether the -GENES suffix encodes the idea of generation. Answering those questions requires careful attention to usage of the word in biblical and non-biblical Greek literature from the Koine period. And that’s exactly what Lee’s article provides. As Wallace observes, “If ‘begotten’ is the routine meaning diachronically, and especially synchronically during the Koine period, Irons may well have a point.”

(4) It would be wise to withhold judgment until seeing the evidence Lee has amassed. Lee has 60+ examples of MONOGENES from 2nd century and earlier. That is a decent data set. Also, other nouns with the suffix -GENES are certainly relevant to the discussion. If some or most are generative (like with the raft of proper names–Hermogenes=”offspring of Hermes”), it would be absurd to rule that evidence out as irrelevant.
My Take-Away’s from the Trinity Debate
August 10, 2016
https://www.dennyburk.com/my-take-aways-from-the-trinity-debate/
 
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