A Muslim poster asked why I had not continued my discussion with him.
I answered that I have a very difficult time figuring out how to return to a thread where I have posted material on Facebook.
This evening I somehow encountered the thread again, and wrote an extended answer to the question we had been discussing. But when I was about to post my comment, Facebook interrupted me and asked me to “sign in” and/or “reload this page.” So I was not able to post what I had written minutes ago, and cannot find the thread where I had typed the post. This is not the first time this has happened.
[The Muslim response:
I was able to find the thread again just now, so I have inserted the text I have been responding to. Even so, the same thing happened again–I was asked to “sign in” and when I did so I was not returned exactly to where I was.
Fortunately, I saved my comment/answer to my computer’s “memory,” so if that has not been lost, here it is:
Adil Abdurahman, I have not forgotten this discussion thread. I am not well acquainted with the process of finding the thread again unless someone comments and I get a notification.
Your argument that the Old Testament was originally written in Hebrew, therefore the meaning of the Hebrew text should have precedence over the meaning of what is found in a mere translation into Greek done many years later sounds reasonable on the surface, but is not correct when all the evidence is taken into account.
I made mention of two additional passages as examples of the principle involved without quoting the passages or offering an explanation.
Heb 1:6 And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him.
Now, where is that stated in the Hebrew text of the Old Testament?
The text is not found in our present Hebrew text. It is found in the Greek Septuagint. Hebrews 1:6 quoted the Septuagint translation of Deuteronomy 32:43,
43 Rejoice, ye heavens, with him, and let all the angels of God worship him; rejoice ye Gentiles, with his people, and let all the sons of God strengthen themselves in him, for he will avenge the blood of his sons, and he will render vengeance, and recompense justice to his enemies, and will reward them that hate him; and the Lord shall purge the land of his people.
Brenton, L. C. L. (1870). The Septuagint Version of the Old Testament: English Translation (Dt 32:43). London: Samuel Bagster and Sons.
I mentioned Revelation 4:8.
Rev 4:8 And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.
Revelation 4:8 is citing Amos 4:13 from the Septuagint Version of the Old Testament for the title “Lord God Almighty.”
13 For, behold, I am he that strengthens the thunder, and creates the wind, and proclaims to men his Christ, forming the morning and the darkness, and mounting on the high places of the earth, The Lord God Almighty is his name.
Brenton, L. C. L. (1870). The Septuagint Version of the Old Testament: English Translation (Am 4:13). London: Samuel Bagster and Sons.
Notice that Amos 4:13 speaks of Christ, and states “The Lord God Almighty is his name.” It is to this passage that John in the book of Revelation alludes when he uses this title at Revelation 4:8.
When Jesus came to Nazareth, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day and stood up for to read (see Luke 4:16). He found the place where it was written,
Luk 4:18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
Luk 4:19 To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.
These words as read by Jesus are cited from the Septuagint from Isaiah 61:1-2.
Therefore, in the light of this evidence, it should be clear that the New Testament writers in their writings and Jesus Himself in his preaching and teaching at times made use of the Greek Septuagint translation of the Bible, as recorded in the New Testament.
David McCalman Turpie, in his The Old Testament in the New: A contribution to Biblical Criticism and Interpretation, gives a very complete analysis of how the Old Testament has been cited by the New Testament. The book contains a number of Tables, Table A, for example, contains the quotations in the New Testament which agree with the original Hebrew of the Old Testament. Table D contains “the quotations of the New Testament which differ from the original Hebrew text but agree with the Septuagint version.” This is the case for Luke 4:18, 19.
Table A lists Matthew 19:18 and Matthew 19:19 as well as Matthew 21:31 as instances where Matthew cites the Hebrew text of the Old Testament. This shows that your suggestion that “the writer of Matthew, whoever he is, was not acquainted with the Hebrew text,” is mistaken.
Knowing this background information helps to provide answers to some interesting questions.
The Jehovah Witnesses argue that Jesus is never called “Almighty God,” but only “mighty God.” Their assertion is clearly mistaken, because Revelation 4:8 speaks of Jesus Christ and cites Amos 4:13 which clearly calls the Messiah “the Lord God Almighty.”
The Jehovah Witnesses argue that Jesus was never worshipped. Their assertion is clearly mistaken because Hebrews 1:6 cites Old Testament Scripture which records the divine command, “Let the angels of God worship Him,” in direct reference to Deuteronomy 32:43.
This also proves from Scripture that Jesus Christ existed as a Person before His human birth to Mary in Bethlehem, for the angels of God were commanded by God to worship Him before Jesus became a man.
I have not yet delved into the question of the status of the Trinity when our Lord Jesus Christ died upon the cross of Calvary. But it should be quite clear that it was the divine-human Person, our Lord Jesus Christ, who in His human nature died on the cross as a priestly-sacrificial offering of Himself for our redemption through His atonement: His divine nature, of course, did not experience death.
If I am able to find this thread again, I can give more explanation regarding the incarnation and hypostatical union of the two natures in Christ and related matters pertaining to the Trinity as revealed in the Bible.
Thank you for your gracious patience manifest in your awaiting my replies.