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Thursday, 9 June 2011

Roman Catholics react to the loss of their New Testament

During the 1970's it was a common misconception that the term "separation of church and state" was enshrined in the US Constitution. In fact, as someone pointed out, the phrase was found in the English version of the Soviet Constitution. It was as if the Communist creed being available in English could somehow overrule our native rights.

We see a similar situation in Roman Catholicism, in which, without any ruling from the college of cardinals or even a bull from the Pontiff himself, the orthodox version of the Latin Bible has been replaced, at least in the New Testament portion, by the Latin translation of a critical Greek text, resulting in the wholesale loss of portions of Scripture formerly held to be divinely inspired and authoritative.

Ron Conte Jr. this summer completed an evaluation of the UBS text and its negative impact on the NV (New Vulgate) Latin edition. He lists several key points online here:

"I was dismayed and appalled by the decisions of the editors of the Nova Vulgata, especially to abandon the Latin scriptural tradition approved by the Council of Trent, and adopt in its place the critical Greek text of Matthew by the (Protestant) United Bible Societies. The UBS text, and the NV as well, omits over one hundred words from the Gospel, found in the Latin Vulgate, includes at least a couple of whole verses."

Problems with the Nova Vulgata (NV):

1. the NV abandons the Latin scriptural tradition

2. the New Testament is simply a representation of the Protestant UBS (United Bible Societies) Greek text

3. the New Testament ignores all Latin and all Greek sources, other than the UBS text, which is mainly the work of Protestant scholars

4. the NV changes the wording in some verses out of political correctness, without any support in any manuscripts for those changes

5. the Latin scriptural tradition is supposed to be used by Bible scholars to settle any uncertain or disputed readings of the text in Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic. But since the NV does not represent the Latin scriptural tradition, but instead represents the Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic, it is not useful for that purpose

6. The Council of Trent declared that the Canon of Scripture includes all the parts of each book as found in the old Latin vulgate Bible (the Latin scriptural tradition). But the NV rejects the Latin scriptural tradition, and removes from the Canon very many words and phrases, as well as more than a few entire verses.

7. The NV relies on the Protestant Stuttgart Vulgate for its base text, ignoring the Pope Sixtus V and Pope Clement VIII Vulgate which was used by the Church for several hundred years as the official Latin Bible.

8. The only version of the NV contains hundreds of typographical errors.

9. The New Testament of the NV shows an appalling lack of editorial discretion. The Latin text is forced to conform to the Greek UBS text even when this makes the Latin text awkward or grammatically incorrect. Editorial decisions other than merely changing the Latin to conform lock step with the Greek are rare.

1 comment:

  1. Being a Protestant, I don't put the same value on some of the Catholic texts as most Catholics would. However, there are some newer versions of the Protestant Bibles that I like, and some that I don't care for. I love the poetic wording of the King James, but it was notorious for adding words to the original scriptures. So, I read in the King James and study in a more accurate version. If the Catholics vote with their dollars and only buy versions they believe to be accurate, those versions will continue to be printed and used.


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