Additions to Text

By John Cortright

2 Timothy 3:16
All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training
in righteousness;

All Scripture is inspired by God.  The words “inspired by God” come from one Greek word–θεόπνευστος (theopneustos or “God-breathed”).  That which originally came from God was inspired by God.  Through the years, the text has been transmitted with great fidelity.  However, in our modern Bibles, there are also items that have been added to the text.  These additions were not “inspired by God” but have been added by translators and publishers of the various Bibles.

SOME ADDITIONS TO THE TEXT

  • Chapters & Verses
  • Chapter Headings, Center References, Footnotes
  • Paragraphs, Paragraph Markers
  • Italicized Words
  • Punctuation – Capital letters, Commas
  • Red Letter Editions
  • Changes to the Text – the Name of God

CHAPTERS & VERSES:
In 1205, Stephen Langton divided the Latin Vulgate Bible into chapters.  Verses first appeared in the Stephens Greek text in 1550.  The first English Bible with both chapters and verses was the Geneva Bible in 1560.

CHAPTER HEADINGS, CENTER REFERENCES, FOOTNOTES:
Almost every English Bible has some type of chapter heading or verse references.  Different publishers have added their own references and headings.  These are not part of the original “God-breathed” Scripture.

PARAGRAPHS & PARAGRAPH MARKERS:
These were not part of the original text but have been added.

ITALICIZED WORDS:
The King James Version and the NASB use italicized words.  The ESV does not use italicized words.  In English, we often italicize words to highlight something of importance.  However, italicized words in the Bible indicate that these words were not part of the Hebrew or Greek.  Italicized words were not part of the original text.

PUNCTUATION – CAPITAL LETTERS, COMMAS:
The oldest Hebrew and Greek manuscripts had no punctuation.  The letters were either all capital letters or all lower case.  All capitalization is an addition to the text.  The KJV and ESV Bibles do not capitalize pronouns when referring to God and Jesus.  However, the NASB capitalizes both.  The NASB also capitalizes all the letters in an Old Testament quote in the New Testament.

All punctuation was added to the text.  There were no commas, no semi-colons, no exclamation points, no parentheses.  These are all additions to the text.  Consider Luke 23:43.

RED LETTER EDITIONS:
Some Bibles put the words of Jesus in red.  There was no distinction in the original text between the words of Jesus and all other Scripture.  These have been added by man and are not always accurate.

CHANGES TO THE TEXT – THE NAME OF GOD:
The name of God in the Hebrew Old Testament is Yahweh.  Most often, the name of God is translated “LORD” – all caps.  However, when the word “Yahweh” appears along with the Hebrew word “Adonai,” most translations will render this as Lord GOD.  An example is Ezekiel 34:30.

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