Matthew 1:17

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So all the generations from Abraham unto David are fourteen generations; and from David unto the carrying away to Babylon fourteen generations; and from the carrying away to Babylon unto the Christ fourteen generations. (ASV)

Contents

Pro

Edit this section if you suspect error.

Only 13 generations from Babylon until Jesus

Authority

Raymond Brown
Bart Ehrman

Ehrman points out in Jesus, Interrupted that there are only 13 generations from Babylon to Jesus in "Matthew's" list. Ehrman also points out that "Matthew" shows 42 generations between Abraham and Jesus while "Luke" shows 57 generations between Abraham and Jesus. Additionally, Ehrman gives a good reason for the different genealogies. "Matthew" is primarily interested in showing Jesus descended from Abraham, to give a Jewish emphasis while "Luke" is primarily interested in showing Jesus descended from Adam, to give a Gentile emphasis


JW: "So all the generations from Abraham unto David are fourteen generations; and from David unto the carrying away to Babylon fourteen generations; and from the carrying away to Babylon unto the Christ fourteen generations."

But according to 1 Chronicles:

http://www.errancywiki.com/index.php/1_Chronicles_3

Solomon
Rehoboam
Abijah
Asa
Jehoshaphat
Joram
Ahaziah
Joash
Amaziah
Azariah
Jotham
Ahaz
Hezekiah
Manasseh
Amon
Josiah
Jehoiakim
Jeconiah

There were 18 names from David to the Exile.

In the Appeal to Authority category:

Raymond Brown, "The Birth Of The Messiah", Page 82, "If there is truth in the theory expounded above that Matthew found the basis for his pattern of fourteen in genealogical lists that served as his sources, then the lists were already in Greek and already contained errors."

The International Critical Commentary is not sure what to make of it suggesting that "Matthew" may have used an acceptable literary convention of the time. Brown comments on supposed parallels as follows, Page 81, "To be sure, none of these enumerations is so deliberate as Matthew's".

In the Appeal to Apologist category, JP Holding, "The Birth Of The Meshugas", Page 1, "Same dip, different day. See #5 above. Normal stuff, not an error. Matthew has split into blocks of 14 so as to match the Hebrew sum for the numerical equivalent to the name David (14), and to match the breaks with significant events in Jewish history, and this is a "pedagogical device" as Glenn Miller has noted."

JW: Now the Greek of 1:17:

"????? ??? ?? ?????? ??? ?????? ??? ????? ?????? ???????????? ??? ??? ????? ??? ??? ??????????? ????????? ?????? ???????????? ??? ??? ??? ??????????? ????????? ??? ??? ??????? ?????? ????????????"

Note that "?????" (all) is the first word on the left.

Now for usage in the Christian Bible: {el}"?????"{/} 46 Nestle-Aland Greek New Testament, 27th ed., with GRAMCORD(TM) Greek New Testament Alpha Morphological Database and McReynolds English Interlinear (16 occurrences in 14 articles)

Chapter 1 ?[Matthew 1:17]? 1 

Chapter 10 ?[Matthew 10:30]? 2

Chapter 13 ?[Matthew 13:56]? 3

Chapter 24 ?[Matthew 24:30]? 4

Chapter 25 ?(2)? ?[Matthew 25:5]? 5

Chapter 1 ?[Luke 1:48]? 6

Chapter 12 ?[Luke 12:7]? 7

Chapter 3 ?[Acts 3:25]? 8

Chapter 9 ?[Acts 9:39]? 9

Chapter 16 ?[Acts 16:26]? 10

Chapter 27 ?[Acts 27:37]? 11

Chapter 16 ?(2)? ?[Romans 16:4]? 12

Chapter 1 ?[Revelation 1:7]? 13

Chapter 2 ?[Revelation 2:23]?


JW: Most of the uses of "?????" above are literal with identification of individual components and their complete and unified inclusive relationship to the total. A few uses are figurative qualifying the relationship to only those individual components that are present.

Now on to BDAG (it's my BDAG Baby):

"???, ????, ??? gen. ??????, ?????, ?????? (dat. pl. ???? and ????? vary considerably in the mss.; s. W-S. �5, 28; cp. Rob. 219�21; on the use of the art. s. B-D-F � 275) (Hom. +). ? pert. to totality with focus on its individual components, each, every, any ? adj., used w. a noun without the art. ?. in the sing. emphasizing the individual members of the class denoted by the noun every, each, any, scarcely different in mng. fr. the pl. �all�: ??? ??????? Mt 3:10; Lk 3:9. ???? ?????? Mt 15:13. ???? ??????, ??? ???? Lk 3:5 (Is 40:4). ??? ????? 4:37. ??? ???????? J 1:9; 2:10; Ro 3:4 (Ps 115:2); Gal 5:3; Col 1:28abd; Js 1:19. ???? ???? GJs 11:2. ??? ????? Ac 17:26a. ???? ???? (Pla., Phdr. 249e) 2:43; 3:23 (cp. Lev 23:29); Ro 2:9; Jd 15. ???? ????? Ac 5:42; 17:17. ??? ???????? 18:4. ???? ???? ??? ???? ??????? 1 Cor 15:24 (cp. Just., D. 111, 2 ?? ?? ????? ???? ???? ??????). ???? ?????????? 2 Cor 4:2. ??? ????? Phil 4:21. ??? ????? Hb 3:4 (GJs 7:3). ???? ????????? 7:7. ???? ??????? all discipline 12:11. ??? ???????? Rv 1:7a. ??? ?????? 5:13a.�Mt 23:35; Lk 2:23 (Ex 13:2); 4:13; 21:36; 2 Th 2:4 (Da 11:36). ???? ?????? every creature Col 1:15; ?? ???? ?????? to every creature vs. 23. ???? ????? 2 Ti 3:16 (s. ????? 2a).�???? ???? (????????????; used in the OT, also En 1:9; TestGad 7:2; GrBar 4:10; but not in EpArist, Philo, nor Joseph.) all flesh Lk 3:6 (Is 40:5); AcPlCor 2:6 and 16 (s. also 3b below). Mostly w. a neg. (so also En 14:21; 17:6) ?? (or ??) � ???? ???? no flesh = no one Mt 24:22; Mk 13:20; Ro 3:20; 1 Cor 1:29; Gal 2:16 (cp. GrBar 8:7 ??? ?? ????? ???? ????). Other sim. neg. expressions are also Hebraistic (s. B-D-F �302, 1; Mlt-H. 433f) ?? � ??? ???? not a thing, nothing Lk 1:37 (cp. PRyl 113, 12f [133 a.d.] ?? � ??? ??????).  ???????? ?????? ??? ?????? I have never eaten anything common Ac 10:14. Cp. Rv 7:1, 16; 9:4; 21:27. Also in reverse order, ??? � ?? or ?? (Ex 12:16; Sir 8:19; 10:6, but s. also GLee, ET 63, �51f, 156) 18:22; Eph 4:29; 5:5; 2 Pt 1:20; 1J 2:21; 3:15b.�Only rarely is a ptc. used w. ??? in this way: ?????? ????????? when anyone hears Mt 13:19. ????? ????????? Lk 11:4 (Mlt-Turner 196f). ?. w. a noun in the pl., without the art. ?????? ???????? all people/men, everyone (Lysias 12, 60; Andoc. 3, 25; X., Cyr. 7, 5, 52, Mem. 4, 4, 19; Demosth. 8, 5; 18, 72) Ac 22:15; Ro 5:12a, 18ab; 12:17, 18; 1 Cor 7:7; 15:19; 2 Cor 3:2; Phil 4:5; 1 Th 2:15; 1 Ti 2:4; 4:10; Tit 2:11. ?????? ??????? ???? Hb 1:6 (Dt 32:43; cp. Demosth. 18, 294 ?????? ????). ? adj. used with a noun or ptc. with the art. ?. in the sing. Oft. ??? ?, ???? ?, ??? ?? is used w. a ptc. (B-D-F �413, 2 and 3) every one who, whoever ??? ? (Soph., Aj. 152; Demosth. 23, 97; Sir 22:2, 26; 1 Macc 1:52; 2:27) ??? ? ??????????? Mt 5:22. Cp. vss. 28, 32; 7:8, 26 (=??? ????? vs. 24; s. below); Lk 6:47; 11:10; 14:11; 16:18; 18:14; 19:26; J 3:8, 15f, 20; 4:13; 6:40; 8:34; 18:37; Ac 10:43b; 13:39; Ro 2:1, 10; 10:4, 11; 1 Cor 9:25; Gal 3:13; 2 Ti 2:19; Hb 5:13; 1J 2:23, 29 al.; 2J 9; Rv 22:18.�??? ?? everything that (1 Macc 10:41): ??? ?? ?????????????? Mt 15:17; Mk 7:18. ??? ?? ??????????? Mt 18:34. ??? ?? ?????????? 1 Cor 10:25; cp. vs. 27. ??? ?? ???????????? Eph 5:14. ??? ?? ???????????? 1J 5:4.�An equivalent of this expr. is ??? ?? (or ?????), ??? ? every one who, whatever (s. above and s. B-D-F �293, 1; 413, 2; Rob. 727; 957), masc.: Mt 7:24; 10:32; 19:29; Lk 12:8, 10 (RHolst, ZNW 63, �72, 122�24), 48; 14:33; Ac 2:21 (??? ??? ???, s. Jo 2:32); Ro 10:13 (??? ??? ??, s. Jo 3:5); Gal 3:10. Neut. (Jdth 12:14.�Jos., Ant. 5, 211 ??? ? = ?????? ??): J 6:37, 39; 17:2b; Ro 14:23; Col 3:17 (??? ? ?? ???). ?. w. a noun in the pl., w. the art. all ? . w. substantives: ????? ?? ?????? Mt 1:17; Lk 1:48; Eph 3:21; GJs 6:2 al. ?????? ???? ????????? Mt 2:4. Cp. vs. 16; 4:8; 11:13; Mk 4:13, 31f; 6:33; Lk 1:6; 2:51; 6:26; J 18:20; Ac 1:18; 3:18; 10:12, 43a; 14:16; Ro 1:5; 15:11 (Ps 116:1); 16:4; 1 Cor 12:26ab; 2 Cor 8:18; 11:28; Eph 4:10; 6:16b; Col 2:13; 1 Ti 6:10; Hb 4:4 (Gen 2:2 and 3); 9:21; Js 1:8; Rv 1:7b; 7:11; 15:4 al.�Used w. a demonstr. pron.: ????? ?? ???????? ??????? Mt 25:7. ?????? ???? ?????? ??????? 26:1. ????? ?? ?????? ????? Lk 1:65; 2:19.�Somet. following the noun: ??? ?????? ????? Mt 9:35; Ac 8:40. ?? ??????? ?????? the disciples, one and all Mt 26:56. ?? ????? ????? Ac 16:26a. Cp. Ro 16:16; 1 Cor 7:17; 13:2a; 15:7; 16:20; 1 Th 5:26; 2 Ti 4:21; Rv 8:3. ?? ????????????? ?????? Mk 1:5.�On the position of ???????, ?????, ??? s. NTurner, VetusT 5, �55, 208�13."

Arndt, W., Danker, F. W., & Bauer, W. 2000. A Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament and other early Christian literature. "Based on Walter Bauer's Griechisch-deutsches Wr?terbuch zu den Schriften des Neuen Testaments und der frh�christlichen [sic] Literatur, sixth edition, ed. Kurt Aland and Barbara Aland, with Viktor Reichmann and on previous English editions by W.F. Arndt, F.W. Gingrich, and F.W. Danker." (3rd ed.) . University of Chicago Press: Chicago


JW: Note a primary general meaning of "pert. to totality with focus on its individual components, each, every, any". Specifically, BDAG has categorized 1:17 as "?. w. a noun in the pl., w. the art. all ? . w. substantives: ????? ?? ?????? Mt 1:17".


So in Summary, the evidence that "Matthew's" identification of 14 generations from David to the Exile at 1:17 is an Error, ranked by weight of evidence is:

1) "Matthew's" explicit identification of 14 generations from David to the Exile is contradicted by the related chronology in 1 Chronicles 3 which lists 18 generations for that period.

2) Raymond Brown concludes that a claim of fourteen generations for that time period would be an error.

3) "Matthew's" use of "?????" (all) in his phrasing has a primary use in the Christian Bible of every individual component of a total being referred to and therefore argues against an intentional presentation of an abbreviated genealogy. BDAG specifically confirms the every individual component of a total being referred to meaning for "Matthew's" use in 1:17.

4) Conjugations of the root "??????" (begat/gave birth to) of the word used by "Matthew", "?????????", in his genealogy, is a relatively common word in the Christian Bible with 97 uses. It is never used in the Christian Bible to describe a physical birth that skips a generation/generations.

5) BDAG and LSJ Lexicons give a primary meaning to "?????????" of immediate biological parent. BDAG specifically classifies the use in 1:2-20 as this meaning and neither show an example of "?????????" with skipped generations.

6) "Matthew" himself distinguishes between "son of" which can mean skipped generations and "begat" which means immediate generation.

7) The specific wording at the start and end of the genealogy and explict use of "14" indicates the Reader would understand that a complete Genealogy was being presented.

8) There are many more examples of "Matthew's" probable errors in the genealogy:

1:4 "Aram" instead of "Ram".

1:5 Use of Rachab with an impossible chronology.

1:7 "Asaph" instead of "Asa".

1:8 Omission of "Ahaziah", "Joash", and "Amaziah".

1:10 "Amos" instead of "Amon".

1:11 Omission of "Jehoiakim".

1:11 Misidentification of the "brothers" of Jeconiah.

1:13 Misidentification of Abiud as a son of Zerubbabel.

evidencing "Matthew's" inadequate scholarship/carelessness/negligence/dishonesty making it more likely that a potnetial individual error is an actual error.

9) The necessity of transliteration of no longer used Hebrew names and resultant spelling variation and similar names would make it easier for names to be omitted unintentionally or intentionally.

10) "Matthew" generally follows the LXX as opposed to the Masoretic for names and the LXX has more name confusion and errors compared to the Masoretic making it more likely that "Matthew" would inherit such errors and they would be less likely to be noticed by a Greek audience.

11) The likely best parallel to compare "Matthew's" Genealogy too, Chronicles, appears to have intended to present a complete listing for the Davidic line.

12) We have no evidence that such omissions in Greek writings were the Rule rather than the exception.

13) Origen confesses to us that in his time the Greek manuscripts were filled with errors regarding Hebrew names. This would have been well before any extant manuscripts.

14) The Early Church Fathers make no mention of an intentional or even unintentional omission in "Matthew's" genealogy.

15) There is evidence in the genealogy that "Matthew" was willing to sacrifice accuracy for theology:

1:5 Use of Rachab with an impossible chronology.

1:7 "Asaph" instead of "Asa".

1:10 "Amos" instead of "Amon".

16) Textual anaysis indicates some trend on the part of Christian copyists to correct some of the above errors indicating an awareness by subsequent Christianity that there were errors.

The evidence that "Matthew's" identification of 14 generations from David to the Exile at 1:17 is not an Error, ranked by weight of evidence is:

1) "Matthew" does not use "?????" (all) directly before referring to the 14 generations between David and the Exile and may have only been referring to the 14 generations there that "Matthew" listed.

2) Because JP Holding says so.


In my opinion, the weight of the Evidence above is that "Matthew's" identification of 14 generations from David to the Exile at 1:17 is an Error. Let me also point out something for the benefit of Fundamentalists here. If you want to believe JP Holding that there is no error here than "Matthew's" use of all the names at this point in the genealogy that was supported by Chronicles would still have been a better choice and therefore, the existing genealogy by "Matthew" is not "perfect".


Joseph



JW: �17�and from the carrying away into Babylon unto Christ are fourteen generations.�

JW: Almost 600 years separate the birth of Shealtiel from the birth of Jesus:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babylonian_Exile

"The first was in the time of Jehoiachin in 597 BCE"

Matthew 2:19 "But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying," (ASV)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herod_the_Great

"Herod I, also known as Herod the Great, was a Roman client-king of Judaea (c. 74 BC - March 4 BC in Jerusalem)."


JW: Let's figure out the average years per generation. Okay, cows divided by shingles, carry The One, Multiply by The Three, that's about 43 years per generation. This defies common sense which sez the average generation for presumably first borns, would be more twentysomething. 43 years is also contradicted for this period by Luke, as we'll see later, who has close to twice as many names for this period and a more believable average of 27 years.

Now "Luke's" names for this period: (ASV 3)

Neri

Shealtiel

Zerubbabel

Rhesa

Joanan

Joda (also known as "The Joester")

Josech

Semein

Mattathias

Maath

Naggai

Esli

Nahum

Amos

Mattathias

Joseph

Jannai

Melchi

Levi

Matthat

Heli

Joseph

Jesus


JW: Which totals not fourteen generations. "Luke" also seems to have rather important names every Lucky 7 names later, Jesus, Joseph, Mattathias and Shealtiel but this is proabably just a coincidence.


Joseph


JW: Let's introduce another problem here for poor, misunderstood Ms. Verse 1:17:

The key word used by "Matthew", "?????????" (begat), in his genealogy is a Verb and not a noun such as "father of":

From NA 27:

"????????? (??????) verb, third person, singular, aorist, active, indicative (Look up) "egenn?sen" (genna?) "gave birth" "to beget, to bring forth""


JW: Let's see how the Major Christian translations translate/mistranslate:

http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%201:2;&version=31;49;9;8;15;

New International Version (NIV)

   2Abraham was the father of Isaac, 
        Isaac the father of Jacob, 
        Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers,

New American Standard Bible (NASB)

2Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, and Jacob the father of [a]Judah and his brothers. 

King James Version (KJV)

2Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren;

American Standard Version (ASV)

2 Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judah and his brethren; 

Young's Literal Translation (YLT)

2Abraham begat Isaac, and Isaac begat Jacob, and Jacob begat Judah and his brethren, 


JW: Note that the translations are mixed between the correct verb (begat) and the incorrect noun (father of). The identification of this word as a Verb is further evidence that "Matthew" intended to present a complete genealogy with no omissions. The Verb puts more distance between the Apologist claim of a parallel to the Hebrew "father of", which is a Noun. Don't let the English translations fool you, go to the Greek source.

Joseph


Patristic Reaction to Genealogy Contradictions

JW:

Note that in Tatian's DIATESSARON he includes every significant part of the four Canonical gospels into his harmonization except for the genealogies. Presumably the contradictions between "Matthew" and "Luke" were so clear and pervasive he could not think of a way to harmonize them.

--JoeWallack 14:40, 21 June 2009 (EDT)

Con

Neutral

Edit this section to note miscellaneous facts.

JW:

The following has been moved from Con to Neutral:

Matthew records, "So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ are fourteen generations."

It is obvious from the genealogies provided in the Old testament that Matthew has reduced much longer genealogies to three series of fourteen generations. Matthew does not explain his rationale for doing this and it is unique to Matthew. Matthew's genealogy was designed to fit the pattern of three series of fourteen generations but Matthew provides no explanation of the need or importance he ascribed to doing it this way. The genealogy, while shortened, does not contradict other information found in the Bible.

JW:

The above was moved because Pro claims a Contradiction error between the number of Generations Explicitly given by "Matthew" and the related number of Generations from 1 Chronicles. Con's defense above is that the reason "Matthew" listed 14 Generations here was to Contrive "14 Generations". This is an explanation of Why there is a Contradiction error and not a Defense against Contradiction error.

--JoeWallack 09:27, 18 Jan 2008 (CST)

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