“The god Iao and his connection with the Biblical God

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MrMacSon
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“The god Iao and his connection with the Biblical God

Post by MrMacSon » Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:13 pm


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Abstract ... the god named Iao is found in Greek and Latin sources of the Hellenistic period since the 1st century BCE. It mainly appears in writings displaying marks of religious syncretism, used as one of the names designating either the highest God or one of his emanations. In the following is examined the possibility that the use of the name Iao, instead of another form of the Tetragrammaton, in the manuscript 4QpapLXXLevb (4Q120; Rahlfs 802) [it] may be the result of a Hellenizing rather than a re-Hebraizing tendency, a view that tends to prevail in the Septuagint studies. Evidence coming from Christian writers shows that, for [a] few centuries CE, Bible manuscripts that contained the theonym Iao were circulating among them and even possibly produced by them.

Introduction

The earliest Septuagint copies (LXX ...) — either close to the “original” Greek translation (OG, “Old Greek”) or relics of its subsequent revisions and recensions, dated from the pre-Christian to the Christian era and discovered in Palestine and Egypt — provide ample evidence for the continuous production and use of manuscripts that included Hebrew forms of the Tetragrammaton within the Greek sacred text. Astonishingly, 4QpapLXXLevb, known also as 4Q120, is the only surviving LXX manuscript that uses a Greek rendering of the Biblical name of God. The object of this presentation is to pose the question whether the use of Iao (Gr. Ιαω / Ἰαώ ) in place of the sacred Tetragrammaton within this manuscript is part of the primary, original translators’ activity (that is, part of a more general Hellenizing process), or rather part of a secondary, correcting Hebraizing tendency. Our working hypothesis is that the utilization of the divine name Ιαω within the sacred text of the Greek Torah may have been primarily motivated by Hellenistic theological conceptions adopted by certain Jewish circles, especially in Egypt ...

... there is compelling evidence, both explicitor implicit, that some of the Greek Bible copies — like the ones read by Christians such as Irenaeus of Lyons, Origen, Eusebius of Caesarea, Tertullian, Jerome, and Ps-John Chrysostom — were employing the use of Ιαω for the Tetra-grammaton ... a possible consequence is that Ιαω (or, less possibly, a similar Greek term) might well have appeared in the original NT copies as well as in the early Christian kerygma ...

Pavlos D. Vasileiadi, The god Iao and his connection with the Biblical God,with special emphasis on the manuscript, 4QpapLXXLevb
Vetus Testamentum et Hellas 4 (2017) 21-51
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