Daniel and the LXX

Many causal readers of the Bible are unaware of what their teachers are using for their teaching text. Most congregates never consider the language. If they even read their Bibles they only look at an English translation. However the Bible was not written in English. It was written in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, and many passages lose a lot in translation. Most translators favor simple messages of salvation or grace, over the technical, historic, or the cultural significants of a passage.

The Old Testament

In the 2nd and 3rd century BC a group of Jews in Alexandria Egypt translated the Old Testament into Greek, this translation is called the Septuagint or the LXX and if favored by many scholars. (The term LXX comes from a tradition that 70 Jews worked on this translation.)

However the Septuagint version of Daniel that most of us have access to, is not really the original Septuagint version, but rather one made in the 2nd century AD by Theodosius. This is because the Septuagint version is so full of fanciful Rabbinic interpretive translations from the 3rd or 2nd century BC that it is useless to those who believed that Yeshua/Jesus is the Messiah. They wrote what they thought the passages meant or would mean, rather than a more useful wooden translation.

There are several verses in Daniel where it is extremely hard to figure out the meaning therefore they are almost impossible to translate. (Dan 8:12 comes to mind.) If one doesn’t know what was meant it is really hard to put it into another language. Then of course there are the verses where the translator was sure what it means and translates the verse accordingly, only to be shown later to have been seriously biased in their thinking.

The only real solution is to read the original Hebrew and Aramaic, because things are not so clear and settled as the English translations make them out to be.

Islam Passes Away Without a Hand, Daniel 8:25

cresent and starBy his cunning he shall make deceit prosper under his hand, and in his own mind he shall magnify himself. Without warning he shall destroy many; and he shall even rise up against the Prince of princes; but, by no human hand, he shall be broken. Dan. 8:25

The “he” in this passage is the religion of Islam, and by 1299 that religion had become an empire, The Ottoman Empire. (See Also: Hermeneutics)

The Ottoman Empire or Porte, was the longest lasting dynastic empire in the history of the world, lasting from 1299 to 1923.

In 1844 with the signing of the Edict of Toleration the Ottoman Empire began a long decline, wasting away till World War One where most of its territory was divided between France and Great Britain. The last Caliph (Mehmed VI) was exiled in 1922. Continue reading