All Conversations in My Heart
Friday, December 07, 2012
  Why are we not consistent?

I make no apologies for any of the following. For me it is an imperative that I seek God in the Scriptures. Those who have managed to wander through the wanderings of my mind with me know my feelings on things truly Catholic. I have no time for anyone who does not keep his or her mind open and FAITHFULLY struggle to inform their consciences. I have very little time for those who say, “My conscience is clear and I believe in mechanical and chemical birth control”. I consider both methods an act of war against creation and very definitely against its Author. It is as bad as if Adam and Eve had eaten the fruit of the tree of life.
How many of us do truly ask ourselves or question the reason why events, actions or movements, sinful or otherwise are allowed by God to influence the life of the Church or whether they are for our good or for our destruction? They, as we reflect on them further, should cause us to ask, “is this, a punishment for our foolishness or for some great stupidity we commit, as a congregation?” “Can I ask,
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Are many of these occasions really be a coincidence or are they the management of our lifes by a logical entity or better still an essence that has our good in mind?”
There are so many irritants in today's Catholic Church. So many acts that are a canker, a sore or heartache in the life of the Church. Surely I can ask, “Who is to fix them?” Who will make us spiritually well? Are we to or do you honestly believe we must offer it all up to God? Is our faith truly one of action or “inaction”. I tell on my behalf that for me not to act is sinful, as both Scriptures and the Catechism tell us we should. To do nothing take no action so our sisters and brothers commit spiritual suicide on themselves or commit an act of spiritual homicide on the souls our children, is nothing short of hell-bent foolishness. It is an act of omission. Do I need to remind any of the clash of Catholic Practices with the traddies and the libbies clashing so vigorously over the two Masses. Just who benefits when the liturgy alone is a veritable battleground and a moment of disunity. ?
Let me candidly ask you all, “Why the Poem of the Man-God?” What is the purpose of this book? Why did God allow it to be written? Did God want it written? Did God dictate it and made His life for Maria Valtorta a beautiful vision of truth? Does this Poem do any good for our relationship with Jesus? Does it correct any errors in scriptures but above all will it bring us any closer to God? Therefore to answer the last question in a Catholic Manner we must ascertain if it adds in any way to grace? If it does then to read it is a meritous act according to the catechism. How many can answer those things truthfully. If we find it does or can truly believe it does then it is not private revelations given to comfort a bed-ridden woman but more it is an enlargement of the Life of Christ. Can it be an action to help us into a closer relationship with Him? Actually I think it is a corollary to St John’s Gospel, where John wrote of the large number of libraries needed to contain the works of Christ. One only has to read the Passion of Christ in book 5 to know what is the truth. So let me start my argument by being charitable and writing Jesus wanted or decided it was time for us to know more about Himself. Also count on the words of Pius 12th., “There is nothing in this book which will cause you to loose your soul". Echoed later, I believe by Cardinal Ratzinger. This is the whole premise of what I want to write. So I ask is the Bible today accurate or as we get further from the time, Christ came to teach us by example and words, have we wandered off the path of He taught and showed to us? Have we, I ask you again? This begs the question of today’s apostles are they trustworthy? Do the actions of the Latter day Apostles and their behaviour enkindle in us a sense that the Holy Spirit is there in them? Only you or God can answer that as you examine their mindset. These latter day Apostles, princes of the Catholic Church today have as we all can see, have a long way to go to restore our respect and trust in them. Am I wrong?
These are my thoughts on the Holy Bible and mine alone. Last week I was in deep trouble with one strange evangelist from one of those strange cults who want to do so much good but so often fall short. They are just a little short from tripping into the Abyss. This man eerie in his behaviour, was trying to convert a friend, to his beliefs, using some non catholic translation of the scriptures. I asked him who gave the world the Bible. He started by saying Moses had some thoughts and put them down on paper. Almost right but not very intelligent was my answer, two errors. One... Moses wrote down what was Hebrew oral teachings and two brought to the Hebrews the Ten Commandments written on stone by God and three wrote a diary of what happened to him personally.
The Bible today is mish-mash of personal opinions of those who firmly believe they are better linguists. They are, by their opinion, which are sensual, far more facile in the grammar and styles of those who used them daily all those years ago. Far more in experience in the “slang” and colloquial use of words of all those years ago. I could go on in this vein for quite some pages. Instead I ask you let me build up the walls of my beliefs so you can blow your trumpet and knock them down.
This is a document you will find, will give you some idea of how The Bible has been gerrymandered to suit modern theological thoughts. You will probably as Catholics of today not consider it dangerous to our souls. Although, I add, with the dreadful translations of liturgical Latin for the Liturgy, this article from the Magazine, “Orthodox Tradition Volume 25 book1” will not raise your eyebrows.

ECUMENISM AND BIBLICAL TRANSLATION: AN ORTHODOX SCHOLAR RESPONDS
by Archimandrite Dr. Seraphim
THE VERY REVEREND DR. SERAPHIM (ALEXIEV). who reposed in 1993, was Professor of Dogmatics at the Theological Academy in Sofia, Bulgaria. He was dismissed from his post in 1968, after refusing to accept the New Calendar, which was adopted that year by the Patriarchate in Sofia, and entered into the resistance. He was the spiritual Father of Bishop Photini of Triaditza, the sole Hierarch of our Sister Church of the True (Old Calendar) Orthodox Christians of Bulgaria, and is revered by the Faithful of that Church as a confessor and man of singular spiritual stature. The present essay is adapted from Chapter XIV, Section D, of his book Orthodoxy and Ecumenism, which has appeared both in Bulgarian (Sofia, 1992) and in Russian (St. Petersburg, 1993).


OF LATE there has been a growing tendency to interpret the Bible without heeding the dogmatic differences which divide mankind. For example, in the weekly ecumenical bulletin of the World Council of Churches (WCC) in Geneva, Okumenische Pressedienst (No. 36, October 16, 1969, p. 8), we find a brief, but quite remarkable passage:
"The common Christian Bible will contain notes and commentaries evidencing no doctrinal elements" (emphasis ours).
Thus, with the assistance of Jewish scholars, the Bible was to be “updated.” Divine Truths, doctrines, were no longer to draw from the Source of Truth. This new Bible was to contribute to the (false) ecumenical equation of the Christian confession with Judaism. My Brackets are to add “false”
Towards an ecumenical Bible.
Just such a translation, carried out in the Netherlands, was produced in France. It was there that, in 1972, an ecumenical version of the New Testament was issued and where, in 1975, a new ecumenical translation of the Old Testament was also published and came into use. The occasion of this latter publication was dubbed an extraordinary event" by the French daily Le Monde (November 7, 1975). Let us note, here, that the separate publication of the Old Testament, without the New Testament, is unprecedented for Catholics. (???) This is because, in its essence, the Old Testament is not self-contained, but finds its full meaning and significance solely in its relationship to the New Testament, for which it is but a preparation “Christ is the end [telos] of the law” (Romans 10:4).
A review of this new ecumenical translation cites a statement made in 1950 by the Parisian theologian and ecumenist the Orthodox Dr. Paul Evdokimov: “While closed, the Bible unites us. But when we turn its pages, the open Bible divides us. We interpret it differently. We read different truths in it.” In order to overcome the “different interpretations” of the Bible, the team of translators decided “to hold out a hand to the Jews.” And how was this rapprochement realized? Here we have it: The translators of the Old Testament were wholly guided by the Masoretic text, i.e., by the Jewish text, that established by rabbinical tradition (in the middle centuries) and put forth in Jewish Bibles. (My brackets).
Furthermore, in the foregoing comments from the French press, we read: “Until Christians and Jews actually unite, the current state of Judaeo-Christian relations entails nothing analogous to this ecumenical translation of the Bible. However, a positive prospect can be found in the fact that, in recapturing the original meaning of certain difficult elements, as well as in the composition of a wide variety of notes, the interpreters have used the works of such great Medieval interpreters as Rashl, Kimkhi, and Ibn Ezra, and, in addition, have cited modem Jewish Biblical scholars. With regard to methodology, great heed has been shown to two principles in this significant venture: the scientific method and collaboration. Each book of the Old Testament has been interpreted by two translators-a Roman Catholic and a Protestant. There were sixty-four translators in all (70 would have been more appropriate) my thoughts again. A coordinating committee was responsible for common agreement on the texts, and all translations were examined by a skilled Orthodox [??] exegete. [Apparently he was the only one, though his name is not indicated]” (bracketed addenda Dr Seraphim's).
The authors of this translation write: “Certainly this translation is not the best one, nor is it final in comparison with the majority of contemporary translations. However, it is the only one, simply because it perfectly satisfies everyone and has been brought into use by the various ‘churches’. Thus far, it is the only common text” (italics ours)
The ecumenical New Testament and Old Testament in combined form. In the publication notice for The Jerusalem Bible (Paris, 1975), the combined text of these ecumenical translations of the Old and New Testaments" which is subtitled “The Holy Bible, translated into French under the direction of the Ecole Biblique de Jerusalem,” we read: “For the Old Testament, we have followed the Masoretic text, that is to say, the Hebrew text, compiled from the eighth to the ninth centuries A.D. by Jewish sages, who undertook its writing and popularized it. This is the text which reproduces the majority of manuscripts” (p. 13).
Let us see how this “Bible” presents the famous “Proto-Gospel,” that is, the first “Good News”-the promise given by God to our Forefathers (Adam and Eve) about the future Savior, represented by the “seed of the woman,” Who smote the head of the serpent (Genesis 3: 15). The Lord God says to the serpent: “I will make you enemies of each other: you and the woman, your offspring and her offspring. It will crush your head and you will strike its heel” (emphasis ours). However, in the unaltered Biblical text, we read: “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; he shall watch against (or ”smite” or “crush,” according to another MS tradition] thy head and thou shalt watch against his heel" (3:16 in the Septuaginta).
According to the interpretation of the Holy Fathers, the “seed of the woman” is Christ, Who smote the head of the serpent, that is, the Devil. Yet, according to the altered text, the offspring of Eve conquered evil, represented by the snake, wholly on their own. Thus, the new Jerusalem Bible abolishes faith in Jesus Christ as the unique Savior and Redeemer of the world.
The Orthodox Church absolutely cannot agree with such an alteration of this Sacred Text; it has always understood the “seed of the woman” to be the Messiah promised by God. With this same meaning in mind, S1. Paul connects the word “seed” to Christ, in his Epistle to the Galatians (3: 16): “Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.”
To counterbalance all of this, we must point out the following:
The only authoritative text of the Holy Scriptures of the Old Testament, which the Orthodox Church has used from the very beginning until the present day, is the so-called Septuaginta (Septuagint), a Greek translation by the “seventy translators” (hence, Septuaginta, from the Latin for “seventy”). It was undertaken in the third century B.C., in Alexandria, at the order of King Ptolemy Philadelphus by pious and learned Jews (see Professor Ivan Korsunskii, (The Translation of the Seventy: Its Importance in the History of Greek Language and Literature], St. Sergius-Holy Trinity Monastery.
The fact that all Greek-speaking Jews accepted this most ancient and unique of Biblical translations as wholly authoritative speaks to its merits. The classical Jewish writers Flavius Josephus and Philo attest to this fact, drawing as they do all Biblical citations from the Translation of the Seventy, which translators, Josephus even calls “prophets”.
The Divinely-inspired books of the New Testament also draw on the same Greek text, the Translation of the Seventy: of the two hundred thirty-eight passages from the Old Testament quoted in the New Testament by the sacred writers of the Gospels, the Acts, and the Epistles, only four are taken from the Hebrew text of the Bible; the rest are taken from the Translation of the Seventy (see Bishop Theophan, Collected Letters, seventh edition, Moscow, 1900, pp. 70-71)
St. John Chrysostom says the following about this succession of Grace: “The Holy Spirit appointed that the Holy Books be translated by the seventy interpreters Jesus Christ came and accepted them. And the Apostles spread them everywhere” (St. John Chrysostom, Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews, Chapter 8, 4).
When quoting the Old Testament, the ancient Holy Fathers also used the Septuagint, citing the Hebrew text only on rare occasions (cf Korsunskii). The Ecumenical Synods likewise used the Translation of the Seventy. (Of course I must add, as did Jesus and the Apostles) My brackets again.
This translation, to this very day, constitutes the official version of the Bible, employed in the Orthodox services as a Divinely-inspired translation. The ancient Slavonic version of the Bible was translated from the Translation of the Seventy and perfectly reproduces it. Thus, the Orthodox Church should always hold to this age old tradition and use this translation as its authoritative text. Unfortunately, today, by way of the foregoing ecumenical translation of the Bible, prepared under the aegis of the World Council of Churches, the Jewish Masoretic text of the Old Testament-established by rabbinical tradition, has prevailed.
The Masoretic text. What is the nature of the Hebrew Masoretic text of the Bible? It is a deliberately expurgated, distorted, and inaccurate text which does not correspond to the original text of the Bible.
After rejecting Christ, Jewish leaders engaged in a bitter struggle against the Holy Apostles, who proved, on the basis of Old Testament Scriptures, that Jesus of Nazareth was the promised Messiah (Acts 5:17-32; 18:28). This struggle was waged against the Apostles’ successors and continues to this day. The Jews, who would not believe in Christ, openly denied that the various Messianic prophecies contained in the Old Testament referred to Christ, our Savior. To justify their erroneous position, they undertook, from the Christian times, to edit those texts containing Messianic prophecies. At times, they intentionally distorted the texts, while at other times they cunningly deleted them. Their purpose was to obfuscate the amazing fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies in the Person of our Lord, Jesus Christ (St. Luke 24:44). To conceal their deceptions, they began to decry the established text of the Septuagint. As evidenced in the Talmud, they proceeded to impugn its undeniable merits. Moreover, they fell to falsifying the very text of the Translation of the Seventy in their editing of it. This accounts for the variable readings that can be found therein. However, they were unable to corrupt it significantly, for prior to the attempts of the Jews to alter this translation, it has already achieved wide distribution in a multitude of manuscripts.
There is no doubt that the Hebrew text of the Bible has many passages that have been intentionally distorted. The ancient Fathers and ecclesiastical writers testify thereto. For example, Justin Martyr, the philosopher, who lived in the second century (circa.165 A.D.), in his remarkable essay, “A Dialogue with Trypho the Jew” (Chapter 71), points out the disingenuous attitude of the Jews towards the Septuagint and states: “But I am far from putting reliance on your teachers, who refuse to admit that the translation made by the seventy elders who were with [King] Ptolemy of the Egyptians is a correct one, but attempt to frame another. And I wish you to observe, that they have altogether destroyed many passages from the translation of scripture produced by these seventy elders who were with Ptolemy, and by which this very Man, who was crucified, is proved to have been sent forth expressly as God, and Man, and as being crucified.”
Returning to my thoughts and knowledge, the original Douai Rheims Bible of the English Language translated from the Latin in the 1500's came with the New Testament published two years before the translation of the Old. To be honest, I perceive what may be a problem with the Medieval Masoretic translation. It seems that there are two masorete methods which can be defined. One is seen in the very old Catholic Habit of comparing each translation to the previous for continuity of belief. We received this from the original masoretic tradition of the Jewish Teaching Tradition. In the medieval years they changed their method. I once read of a Rabbi Aaron ben Asher when using their oral tradition of cantoring the learning of the Tanakh, decided the manuscript before him had an amount of fly specks and dirt. He determined to correct these false accents and cantation marks. The example I read of his corrections made rope into camel, and rod into bed. It would seem to use later hebrew translations is suspect. Obviously words have been changed. I wonder how this effects the Hebrew Bible Code Theology? It would suggest to me that everyone has lined up with opinions on how to translate the Catholic Bible ac cording to what they feel, and this is sensual, certainly not Holy Spirit driven. It seems if Justin Martyr was correct they still, the Jews, still have a passionate desire to destroy the Catholic Version of Christ our Saviour.
Con Permissio, let me give you a historical take on the Latin Vulgate. Using the Divine Revelation document of Vatican 2 and studying, using the signs of the time when the Bible was made a canon. In 362 at the Synod of Rome of that year we received what is generally known as the Latin Vulgate. What kind of men were these Bishops. They were members of the Catholic Church, the roman west and byzantine east. They used Latin many them but only as a second language. Politically. it was the official language of communication used by the ruling government in Rome and her officials elsewhere. They could speak many other languages including dog Latin, the polyglot everyday language of the uneducated roman citizen and most were extremely fluent in Greek. Jerome, a Dalmatian monk priest was chosen to collect and translate the canon of the Bible into Latin. He could not go wrong for every language he translated there were Bishops of who many could fluently translate their language into Latin. You can count on every nuance, every colloquialism was thoroughly known and understood. Just as critical would be the Hebrews who would not want the correct translation made but would have to accept it because of the Jews who had converted.
What the sudden need for a written word. Well the old records were worn out from constant use and old means of recording had rotted and many Bishops had handed over their books to be burnt or otherwise destroyed by the Romans at the time of persecution and martyrdom. How can we know the right and correct manuscripts were translated. Well any Monastery, any presbyter, any basilica would know the truth of their records and as was the Hebrew custom margin note, footnotes would have been corrected and any copying errors noted too. These ancients of our Church would know better than the self claimed expert linguists or archaeologists of today what was right. Errors, heretical errors of some magnitude had crept in and the Bishops of that time had to put them to the sword. I have some benchmarks I have used to check the veracity of the translations I use. Try Ezechiel 18:4 "souls" is the correct word not power. Try Deuteronomy 23:18. the price of a dog at the temple. Very important in the description of the male prostitutes selling their wares at the Temple. 
Also check the words in various translations of First Corinthians 6:9...10. In the Greek Interlinear Bible (find it on line) Paul who could speak Greek superbly but using a colloquial Greek here uses words like catamite and sodomite. By the way you will not find catamite in any spell checker. I have a table I have made which includes various translations and it would scandalize you to see what personal opinions have made of as Christ's words. To use an very English phrase why do we now mince words and not say it like it is?
Once again do not think for one moment I need you to believe what I have written. I would love you too but go to your parish priests and bishops ask for their opinion. See what they counsel. If they disagree get them to prove their points. Do not take any advice that says read this or read that. Get them to read it with you.
And so I pray, “Wisdom of the Sacred Head guide us in all Your ways, O Love of the Sacred Heart consume us with Your fire”






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