Jesus Saved Israel from the Egyptians

Biblical Studies Sep 23, 2013

A while back, I was catching up on Dan Wallace’s posts and came across this fascinating paragraph (I’ve added the translation):

Another significant change is found in Jude 5. NA27 reads πάντα ὅτι [ὁ] κύριος ἅπαξ [“[you] all that the Lord, once for all” -DK], while NA28 has ἅπαξ πάντα ὅτι Ἰησοῦς [“[you] all, once for all, that Jesus” -DK]. The key difference is Ἰησοῦς [Jesus] for κύριος [Lord]. The text now says that Jesus saved his people out of Egypt and later destroyed the unbelievers. The NET Bible and the ESV also have the reading Jesus. As the primary textual critic for the NET, I felt that this reading would be the most controversial of any that we adopted—if people would ever read Jude! But it seemed to raise no eyebrows at all. One of my students at Dallas Seminary, Philipp Bartholomä, examined the issue in much greater detail, writing his term paper in the class New Testament Textual Criticism on this textual problem. He concluded that Ἰησοῦς was the preferred reading. That paper was developed into an article that was published in Novum Testamentum: “Did Jesus Save the People out of Egypt? A Re-examination of a Textual Problem in Jude 5” (NovT 50 [2008] 143–58).

Having never head of this varient before (shame on me, I guess), I did a little comparison of my own.

Like Wallace says, the NA27 reads “Lord”, as does the Byzantine. But not only does the 28th edition read “Jesus”, so does the SBLGNT (Edited by Michael Holmes and published two years ago).

As far as English translations goes, the NET and ESV do read “Jesus”, but so does the NLT. This was a change for the NLT. The 1996 text reads “Lord” with a footnote (I don’t have a copy of the 2004 text).

I’m not sure which English translation went with the “Jesus” reading first, but I’m sure they all will by over the next decade or so.

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