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Hebrew/Aramaic Behind Greek Revelation

I have been dealing with the issues of Hebrew and/or Aramaic origins of the books of the “New Testament” for forty years. The Book of Revelation is a very unique book in this field. The Greek of the Book of Revelation is among the worst Greek ever written. It is absolutely filled with serious Greek grammatical errors. However, as I have been showing, when we examine these Greek grammatical errors closely, we see that they are the result of translating too literally from a Hebrew or Aramaic original (Hebrew and Aramaic have similar grammar which is completely different from Greek grammar). The result is that it is easy to see the grammatical structure of the Hebrew behind the Greek version. While it is terrible Greek, it is beautifully written very idiomatic Hebrew. This gives us a picture of what the original Hebrew looked like, and unfortunately it did not look anything like the Cochin Hebrew version of Revelation, which is clearly a Hebrew translation of the Greek version (or of some version originating from the Greek.) I realize that there is a lot of hoopla around the Cochin Hebrew version, and people are mesmerized by hoopla and showmanship. But we need to be grounded in reality not hoopla, and the reality is that the Cochin version is not the original Hebrew, it is not even close. I wish it was, I would be very excited to verify that it was, but it just isn’t.

Rev. 1:5

Here we find a grammatical monstrosity in the Greek version: και απο Ιησου Χριστου ο μαρτυς ο πιστος “And from Jesus Christ (gen. case), the faithful witness (nom. case).” Here we have a noun with a nominative case ending in apposition to a noun with a genitive case ending. This is deplorable Greek, but it results from translating too literally from a language without case endings. Because of this grammatical error in the Greek, we can see the Hebrew grammar quite well. The Original Hebrew would have been the very idiomatic Hebrew ומן ישוע המשיח הוא העד הנאמן Literally “And from Yeshua the Messiah, he is the faithful witness.” which would be the idiomatic way to say this in Hebrew, But in Hebrew the pronoun הוא has started a new clause, causing the Greek translator to translate too literally with the nominative case. This is abominable Greek, but perfectly idiomatic Hebrew. So we can definitely see the original Hebrew behind the Greek. Unfortunately the Cochin translates the Greek into Hebrew as ומישוע המשיח העד נאמן omitting the pronoun הוא which had caused the grammatical error by the Greek translator, thus demonstrating once again, that the Cochin Hebrew version is merely a Hebrew translation going back ultimately to a Greek source.

Rev. 1:6

Here the oldest Greek manuscripts read βασιλείαν ιερείς “a kingdom, priests” which is clearly a mistranslation of the Hebrew of the phrase in Exodus 19:6 ממלכת כהנים “kingdom of priests”. While the earliest Greek manuscripts read βασιλείαν ιερείς “a kingdom, priests” the later, Byzantine type manuscripts read βασιλείς και ιερείς “kings and priests” . The Cochin Hebrew version presents us with a Hebrew translation of the later Greek text reading למלכים ולכהנים “kings and priests” rather than the original Hebrew ממלכת כהנים “kingdom of priests”.

Rev. 1:7

It is easy to see the Hebrew behind this verse because it quotes from a series of passages from the Tanak, specifically Dan. 7:13 and Zech 12:10, 12, 14. Specifically let us look at the quotation from Zech 12:10 where the Greek of Revelation reads οψεται αυτον πας οφθαλμος και οιτινες αυτον εξεκεντησαν “and every eye will see him and the ones who pierced him” the Hebrew (from Zech 12:10) was והביטו אלי את אשר דקרו “they shall look upon me whom they have pierced (“me” obviously shifted to “him” for the change in preservative person) However the Greek translator wrongly translated אשר “which/whom” which can also mean “that” with και οιτινες “and those” (the bad Greek of the translator also using the plural “those” rather than “that”. The Cochin text presents not the original Hebrew but a Hebrew translation of the Greek, complete with the Greeks mistranslation from the original Hebrew, and the Greek translator’s grammatical error that changed the singular to plural, thus ותראו אותו אלה הדקרים “and they will see him, those who pierced him” Such that אשר (which/Whom/that) in the Hebrew was mistranslated οιτινες “those” rather than “whom” by the Greek translator and the Cochin Hebrew translator translates this Greek translator’s mistake as אלה “these/those” in his own Hebrew translation. Yet another example (is this eight already?) that the Cochin Hebrew Revelation cannot be the original Hebrew.

Rev. 2:1

Here the Cochin Text has מהעדה של עפהיזוס “from the assembly of Ephesus” where the Greek reading has the highly unusual reading τω εν Εφεσω εκκλησιας literally “the in Ephesus assembly” which is completely unacceptable Greek, and obviously too literally translated from the same Hebrew construction we see in the Hebrew of Daniel 8:2 were we read בשושן הבירה literally “in Shushan the citadel” so that the original Hebrew clearly read באפסוס הקהל not מהעדה של עפהיזוס

Rev. 2:22

Here we have another compelling evidence for the original Hebrew of the book, which we can clearly see behind the bad Greek translation. Here the Greek reads ιδου βαλλω αυτην εις κλινην “Behold I am casting her into a bed [and the one’s committing adultery with her]” The use of κλινην “bed” here seems strange indeed until we realize that the Greek translator has mistranslated one of two possible Hebrew words here (מטה or ערש) either of which can mean either “bed” or “bier”. Of course Jezebel would like nothing better than to be thrown into κλινην “bed” with her adulterers, but the clear meaning here is that she is being thrown onto her funeral bier along with her adulterers. This is a place where we can clearly see that the Greek is a bad translation of one of two possible Hebrew words, demonstrating that the Greek was a translation. But when we look at the Cochin Hebrew Revelation, we do not see either of these two possible underlying Hebrew words used, instead the difficult passage is simply omitted. However this passage that is difficult in the Greek was not a gloss in the Greek, it was obviously the result of mistranslation from the ambiguous Hebrew original. Instead the Cochin translator omitted the passage because it did not really make sense in his Greek source.

Rev. 2:27

Revelation 2:27 is quoting Psalm 2:9. However the Greek translator of Rev. 2:27 (as does the Greek Septuagint translator of Psalm 2:9 misread תְּרֹעֵם (“shall break them”) as we see in the Masoretic Text of Psalm 2:9 with the wrong vowels as תִּרְעֵם “shall shepherd them” or in Greek ποιμανει then the Cochin Hebrew translates the Greek ποιμανει into Hebrew as ינהג אותם “shall lead them” when one need only look at the Hebrew of Psalm 2:9 to see the original reading is תְּרֹעֵם “shall break them” and that the Cochin Hebrew is a Hebrew translation of the Greek misreading of the original Hebrew. Even if we accept the Septuagint/Greek Rev. 2:27/Psalm 2:9 reading of תרעם as תִּרְעֵם “shall shepherd them” the reading of the original Hebrew would still not be ינהג אותם .

Rev 4:8

In Rev. 4:8 Codex A reads και τα τεσσάρα ζώα εν καθ εν αυτών “and the four beasts one for one of them…” while the Byzantine type texts have και τεσσάρα ζώα εν καθ εαυτό “and the four beasts one for himself”. Codex A is preserving a Hebraism where אחד “one” is repeated אחד אחד idiomatically in Hebrew to mean “each one” but the Hebrew the Cochin text has only ולכל אחד ” and to every one” missing the Hebraism behind the ancient text type Greek and following the less Semitic Byzantine text type.

Rev. 12:10

Furthermore in Rev. 12:10 we find the Hebrew word “Satan” (שטן) for “accuser” However the Greek has κατηγορος in the Alexandrian and Byzantine type texts and κατηγωρ in the Western type manuscripts. It has long been pointed out that κατηγωρ is a Greek transliteration of the Rabbinical Hebrew word קטיגור which certainly is the word which appeared here in the original Hebrew, not שטן.

Rev. 16:16

Another very clear evidence is in Rev. 16:16 In this text, we are told in Cochin that the place of the gathering for the end times battle הנקרא בלשון עברי הרמגדן ” is called in the Hebrew tongue ‘Harmegidon’” The original Hebrew would have no need to explain that “Har Megiddon” is “in the Hebrew tongue”.

Rev. 20:2

Another example: Rev. 20:2 where the Greek reads και εκρατησεν τον δράκοντα ο όφις ο αρχαίος “And he seized the dragon (accusative) the old serpent (nominative)…” here we have nouns with two mismatched cases in apposition. The Greek grammar is terrible. However the terrible Greek grammar reveals the underlying Hebrew which is very good idiomatic Hebrewותפש את התין הוא הנחש הקדמוניwhere the הוא (he) introduces a new clause. Literally “He seized the dragon. He [the dragon] is the old serpent…” The Greek translator translated too literally, rendering the new clause in the nominative case, even though in the Greek it was in apposition to a noun in the accusation case. However the Cochin text just has ולקח התנין “and took the dragon” omitting the phrase “the old serpent ” which was clearly there in the original Hebrew, demonstrating once again that the Cochin Hebrew Revelation cannot be the original Hebrew

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