In Quest Of The Autograph Of The Book Of Jeremiah: A Study Of Jeremiah 25 In Relation To Jeremiah 46-51 -- By: Duane L. Christensen

Journal: Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society
Volume: JETS 33:2 (Jun 1990)
Article: In Quest Of The Autograph Of The Book Of Jeremiah: A Study Of Jeremiah 25 In Relation To Jeremiah 46-51
Author: Duane L. Christensen


In Quest Of The Autograph
Of The Book Of Jeremiah: A Study Of
Jeremiah 25 In Relation To Jeremiah 46-51

Duane L. Christensen*

The doctrinal basis of the Evangelical Theological Society makes specific reference to the concept of autographs for the individual books of the Bible. The book of Jeremiah is interesting in this regard in that the MT of Jeremiah is markedly different from its LXX text. For those who believe that the original autograph was indeed the inerrant Word of God, it is of interest to determine which of the two textual traditions is closer to that presumed autograph.

This paper is primarily concerned with Jeremiah 25 and the theme of the cup of Yahweh’s wrath in relation to the so-called oracles against foreign nations in chaps. 46–51 (MT), which appear in the LXX immediately after 25:13. It will be argued that it is not easy to posit a simple evolutionary model to explain the relationship between the divergent textual traditions represented by MT and LXX. Moreover it does not seem possible to choose between these separate traditions in relation to a presumed autograph from which either or both of these texts developed. In short, the very concept of an autograph of the book of Jeremiah may be in question. Perhaps we need to formulate a new model for thinking about the concept of the inerrancy of the Biblical text in relation to the elusive scholarly construct we have designated by the term “autograph.”

The fact that Jeremiah 25 is somehow connected with the collection of oracles against the nations of chaps. 46–51 (MT) is obvious. As Hay puts it: “The drinking of the cup symbolizes the judgment of the nations, a judgment that is articulated in the oracles.”1 In the text of the LXX the collection of oracles against foreign nations appears after 25:13 and the “cup of wrath” pericope (25:15–38) was regarded as the proper conclusion to this collection. Nonetheless the relationship between chaps. 25 and 46–51 in the MT is not entirely clear.

More than eighty years ago Cornill argued that in spite of the present textual situation in the LXX, which has 25:1–13 as an introduction to the larger collection of oracles against foreign nations in Jeremiah, it is only

* Duane Ch...

You must have a subscription and be logged in to read the entire article.
Click here to subscribe
visitor : : uid: ()