Two lines of Bible Manuscript Evidence Part 1
What does God have to say concerning Egypt?
Genesis 3:1 (KJB) “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?”
Since the beginning of time, Satan has attacked God’s spoken word, His written word, and His physical Word, Jesus Christ. Satan has been corrupting the words of God to deceive us.
Every time God has given us His written Word, Satan has opposed it by creating a corrupt text to deceive people. Satan knows that he can’t abolish God’s Word, so He establishes a deceptive path that has led to our modern Bible versions.
The existing Bible manuscripts that we have today provide evidence regarding their authenticity, age, and origin. The method used to date ancient manuscripts is called Paleography, and we will dedicate an article to Paleography, and it’s deceptive origin later in this series. We recently updated a chart on the two lines of Bible manuscripts. This series of articles will provide details that are necessary to fully understand what Satan has created and the men he has used for his diabolical plot.
On this page you will learn about the two paths of New Testament manuscripts that have formed our Bibles:
God promised in His written Word to “preserve His Word forever, ” this promise has been trusted by believers in the inerrant word of God.
Psalm 12:6-7 (KJB) “The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.”
The other path created by heretics who don’t believe in the inerrant preserved word of God or the deity of Jesus; so they corrected, changed and removed words and verses, that didn’t agree with their way of life.
God’s New Testament manuscripts were written in Greek so that they could spread throughout the Roman Empire.
Jesus and the disciples spoke in Hebrew, but the N.T. was written in Greek, which was the standard trade language at the time so that the gospel would spread to the nations.
Believers in Antioch, Syria collected the Holy Scriptures, which formed the New Testament. Antioch is where followers of Christ were first called Christians. They made many copies of the scriptures and shared them with other churches, and many believed in Jesus through their witness.
Satan countered by having philosophers in Alexandria, Egypt change the Syrian texts to fit their beliefs. Unbelieving gnostic philosophers in Alexandria Egypt who did not accept the Bible as the Word of God or Jesus as the Son of God edited, added to and deleted many portions of God’s Words and then pawned off their work as the Word of God.
As a result, their Greek manuscripts changed or deleted words, or deleted entire verses, where the text authenticated the deity of Jesus.
The two most prominent of the corrupt Alexandrian codices are the Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Vaticanus.
The purpose of this article is to look investigate the ancient locations of the lines of Bible manuscripts to see what God’s Word has to say about them. As stated the two lines of Bible manuscripts come from Antioch, Syria and Alexandria, Egypt. Let’s do some searches in the Bible to see what the God’s Word has to say about these locations.
Alexandria, Egypt was known for instruction and philosophy. Alexandria was renowned for its library and was a center of learning in the centuries before the New Testament era. Alexandria was known to have received much of its thinking from Athens. Alexandria was immersed in the views of the pagans.
Gnosticism is a complex religious and philosophical movement that started before Christianity and succeeded from about 100 A.D. until today. There were many Christian, Jewish and pagan Gnostic sects that taught salvation through a secret “knowledge” or “Gnosis.” Alexandria was a critical center of Gnosticism which had become the heir of Jewish traditions, classical thought, and the old mysticism of oriental religions.
What we know about Gnosticism is from the writings of Irenaeus, Hippolytus, Tertullian, Origen, and some later manuscripts discovered in the eighteenth century such as the “Codex Askew, Codex Bruce, the Berlin Gnostic Codes and, most recently, the Nag Hammadi collection.”
The danger of Gnosticism is readily apparent. It denies the incarnation of God as the Son. In so doing, it rejects the true usefulness of the atonement since, if Jesus is not God, He could not atone for all of mankind; and we would still be lost in our sins.
Here is a quote from the website “The Egypt Geek – Ancient History for the Masses.”
“After Alexander the Great conquered and Hellenized Egypt, there was a tremendous increase in contact and cultural exchanges between the Greeks, Romans, and Native Egyptians, which spurred the creation of so-called “syncretic cults.” “Syncretism” is “the amalgamation or attempted amalgamation of different religions, cultures, or schools of thought.” Essentially, the Greeks and the Egyptians put their heads together and combined different elements of their mythologies and pantheons to create “combo-gods” that both group could worship. In the city of Alexandria in particular, these cults flourished and rose to prominence, blending elements of Hellenistic and native Egyptian deities and increasing cohesion between Egypt’s rulers and its indigenous and immigrant populations.”
When researching the two locations of Bible manuscripts the “Law of First Mention” is crucial. The First Mention principle, the idea is that God indicates the truth in His mind that will not change later on. The Law of First Mention means that the initial discussion of any subject in the Bible would have unusual significance. Sometimes the first mention is negative and sometimes it is positive. We shall see what the Bible things of Alexandria, Egypt.
- The first mention of Egypt is – Genesis 12:10-12 (KJB) “And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; for the famine was grievous in the land. And it came to pass, when he was come near to enter into Egypt, that he said unto Sarai his wife, Behold now, I know that thou art a fair woman to look upon: Therefore it shall come to pass, when the Egyptians shall see thee, that they shall say, This is his wife: and they will kill me, but they will save thee alive.”
Egypt is mentioned negatively, and Abram surely had a fear about taking his wife to Egypt. The question is what prior knowledge about Egypt did Abram have concerning how the people in Egypt treated outsiders. Abram had a right to be concerned because Jesus Christ, Abram’s descendent was at stake.
- Genesis 37:36 (KJB) “And the Midianites sold him into Egypt unto Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh’s, and captain of the guard.” Joseph was sold into slavery in Egypt which is also negative.
- Exodus 1:11 (KJB) “Therefore they did set over them taskmasters to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh treasure cities, Pithom and Raamses.” Here Israel is persecuted in Egypt. Though Israel had evidently resided peacefully and comfortably in Egypt for many years, partially in fear and jealousy and perhaps somewhat in the earliest form of anti-Semitism, the Egyptians forced them into slavery.
Exodus 1:15-16 (KJB) “And the king of Egypt spake to the Hebrew midwives, of which the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah: 16 And he said, When ye do the office of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them upon the stools; if it be a son, then ye shall kill him: but if it be a daughter, then she shall live.” Furthermore, Pharaoh wanted to kill all the male children. Another attack directed at Jesus Christ.
- Exodus 20:2 (KJB) “I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.” Here God calls Egypt “the house of bondage.” Deuteronomy 4:20 (KJB) “But the LORD hath taken you, and brought you forth out of the iron furnace, even out of Egypt, to be unto him a people of inheritance, as ye are this day.” These are God’s words, and clearly, He did not think much of Egypt.
- Revelation 11:8 (KJB) “And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.” Here God compares Egypt to Sodom.
These verses are only a few examples of references directly from God’s word concerning Egypt, but they do paint a picture!
Now, let’s take a look at what the Bible has to say about Alexandria. We will look at all references to Alexandria.
- Here is the first mention – Acts 6:9 (KJB) “Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen.”
The Jews from Alexandria had a hand in stoning Stephen. The blood of the first New Testament martyr was shed by the men from Alexandria. So the first mention of Alexandria is negative – the same as the first mention of Egypt.
- Acts 18:24 (KJB) “And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus.”
Apollos was an unsaved Jewish man from Alexandria who was zealous in spirit but misinformed about the truth of the gospel. The true gospel is salvation by faith through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Apollos was preaching the baptism of John the Baptist as the way to salvation. In verse 26 Apollos is led to Christ. If you doubt that he was saved just look at the change in the message he preached. Acts 18:28 (KJB) “For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publickly, shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ.” This second mention of Alexandria is equal to false biblical doctrine.
- Acts 27:6 (KJB) “And there the centurion found a ship of Alexandria sailing into Italy; and he put us therein.”
Paul is sent to Rome on a ship from Alexandria. This ship would eventually sink and Paul would spend three months on Melita.
- Acts 28:11 (KJB) “And after three months we departed in a ship of Alexandria, which had wintered in the isle, whose sign was Castor and Pollux.”
The second ship that was to take Paul to Rome for his trial (and imprisonment) was also from Alexandria.
If you accept the Bible as your final authority, it would be wise to take particular note of what His word says about Egypt and Alexandria.
In part two we will see what God has to say about Antioch and Syria.
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