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The Johannine Comma

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I noticed a query here on the Johanine Comma which I find it difficult not to satisfy. I have written an article about it showing the Comma was a marginal note that made its way into the main text of the epistle largely through the work of copysts. And it found its way into the text because of a deeply entrenched conviction about the Trinity, not the other way around.

Could there have been a motive for introducing the gloss into the main text of 1 Jn. 5:7 that would make it a conscious effort to pervert the Christian faith? Was there anything in the year 800 or thereabouts that made the Catholic Church want to “change” the belief in God? I don’t think there is any except the desire of the so-called “non-Trinitarians” to blame the Catholic Church for their not being a part of it. The fact is, all so-called “Christian Churches” who are Non-Trinitarian were founded AFTER the Protestant churches have emerged. This can only mean one thing: the “non-Trinitarian” belief is but an attempt to “correct” a supposed impurity in Christian doctrine introduced by the Catholic Church. In other words, the “non-Trinitarian” belief is a modern teaching that arises from the need to make one’s beliefs look original in the face of opposition and antagonism to Catholic belief.

But the query did give me an occassion to see what others are posting on the web now about the Johanine Comma. Here are some of the more informative ones.

Jeffrey Koo’s article on the Johanine Comma argues for its antiquity and therefore authenticity. So does this long and articulate post from the American Presbyterian Church website. This latter answers the arguments in favor of atheism at the Rejection of Pascal’s Wager website. The Bible-Researcher gives a studied description of the Johanine Comma that justifies its exclusion in modern bible translations. A WikiPedia article on the subject demonstrates through a history of omission of the comma in quotations used in Trinitarian debates that it could not have been the “Trinitarian backbone” that non-Trinitarian fundamentalists and atheists make it out to be. Finally, an article by Daniel Wallace gives us an insight into the reasons why the Johanine Comma is such a controverted issue in the English-speaking world.

Significantly, the German translation done by Luther was based on Erasmus’ second edition (1519) and lacked the Comma. But the KJV translators, basing their work principally on Theodore Beza’s 10th edition of the Greek NT (1598), a work which itself was fundamentally based on Erasmus’ third and later editions (and Stephanus’ editions), popularized the Comma for the English-speaking world. Thus, the Comma Johanneum has been a battleground for English-speaking Christians more than for others. (The Textual Problem in 1 Jn. 5:7-8)

Originally posted 2008-08-06 02:59:04. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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