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alterations to text

Source:
A Dictionary of the Bible What is This? Contains accessibly written entries for topics covering the religious, historical, and social aspects of the Bible.

    alterations to text

    Variations among MSS are sometimes due to scribes having misheard a word being dictated or through some other human error. But also sometimes alterations were made for doctrinal reasons. For example a reading loutron = purification in Mark 10: 45 may have been changed from lutron = ransom to make the verse conform to the theology of Heb. 9: 14. Cf. also textual variants at Rev. 1: 5. Sometimes it seems that a scribe was motivated to ensure that his text did not imply an unacceptable doctrine; e.g. Luke 2: 22: ‘the time for their purification’ has been altered to ‘her purification’ in certain Syriac and Coptic MSS in the interests of the doctrine of the Virgin Birth and as a correction because the rite of purification involved the mother alone anyway (Lev. 12: 4–6). Similarly, several MSS (e.g. D, Codex Bezae, c. 400 CE) omit Mark's mistaken ‘when Abiathar was high priest’ (2: 26).

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