為什麼要研讀七十士譯本?
Why Study the Septuagint?

 
舊約聖經主要是以希伯來文寫成,在主前第三世記(五經於 280 BC 譯畢),由 72 位亞歷山大的猶太學者譯成希臘文,後人誤把 72 位稱為 70 位,即稱為七十士譯本(Septuagint,拉丁文 Septuaginta = 七十),而羅馬數目字 LXX 就成為其簡稱。
 

新約常常引述七十士譯本

你知道為什麼有的時候,當新約顯然是引述舊約,所引述的卻與舊約聖經有出入嗎?這是因為新約作者常常直接引述七十士譯本(約有三百次之多),而不是引述希伯來文聖經。

例如希伯來書11:21乃是引述創世記47:31──

來11:21 雅各因著信、臨死的時候、給約瑟的兩個兒子各自祝福、扶著杖頭敬拜神。
創47:31 雅各說、你要向我起誓、約瑟就向他起了誓、於是以色列在床頭上敬拜神。

創世記47:31的七十士譯本說雅各是倚著「杖」頭敬拜神,而希伯來文聖經說雅各是倚著「床」頭敬拜神;可見希伯來書作者乃是直接引述七十士譯本,而非希伯來文聖經。

但是為什麼希伯來文原文是「床」,七十士譯本卻譯成「杖」呢?原來七十士譯本用的希伯來文抄本只有子音,沒有母音,讀經者必須自己根據上下文決定是什麼字。創世記這裡的希伯來文是מטה,這可能是

מַטֶּה 杖 (staff)
מִטָּה 床 (bed)

Why is it important to study the Septuagint?

Several reasons make study of the Septuagint important: (1) It provides extremely early textual testimony to the Hebrew Scriptures; (2) it provides us with an extremely early understanding of Hebrew grammar and word meanings otherwise unknown to us; (3) it essentially provides for us the earliest commentary on the Hebrew text (since all translation involves interpretation); (4) it serves as a key witness to the thought and worldview of Second Temple Judaism (c. 450 b.c.–a.d.70), since it was produced in the intertestamental period; (5) it is the key to understanding the Greek of the NT, since it was used so often by the apostles and by the early church; (6) it can shed light on translation debates today.
 

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