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ἑξακόσιοι ἑξήκοντα ἕξ

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  • ἑξακόσιοι ἑξήκοντα ἕξ

    This is a non-debate, non-cabala, non-esoterica, and non-gematria (except as occurs in the text of Rv 13:18) thread.

    I specifically request that Geert van den Bos not post in this thread or in any other thread that I may start.

    I propose to confine myself to factual information; however, if anyone wishes to take exception to what I may present herein, please do so in a debate thread started for that purpose.
    Last edited by John Reece; 03-07-2014, 08:25 AM.

  • #2

    Geert you will not respond here or participate in any of John's threads as of this point forward. If you have an issue with this send me a PM.


    • #3
      Originally posted by Sparko View Post

      Geert you will not respond here or participate in any of John's threads as of this point forward. If you have an issue with this send me a PM.
      Thank you!


      • #4
        The title of this thread is the last three words in the Greek text of Revelation 13:18.

        NA27: Ὧδε ἡ σοφία ἐστίν. ὁ ἔχων νοῦν ψηφισάτω τὸν ἀριθμὸν τοῦ θηρίου, ἀριθμὸς γὰρ ἀνθρώπου ἐστίν, καὶ ὁ ἀριθμὸς αὐτοῦ ἑξακόσιοι ἑξήκοντα ἕξ (TNIV: This calls for wisdom. Let those who have insight calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man. That number is 666.)

        From New Testament Text and Translation Commentary, page 846 (Tyndale, 2008), by Philip W. Comfort:
        Textus Receptus ; Westcott & Hort ; Nestle-Aland/United Bible Societies
        ἑξακόσιοι ἑξήκοντα ἕξ [= χξς]
        P1 (א) A P Maj Irenaeus Hippolytus
        all English versions

        variant 1
        εξαδοσιοι δεκα εξ [= χις]
        P115 (511 ― no longer extant) Manuscriptsaccording to Irenaeus
        RSVmargin NRSVmargin NASBmargin NJBmargin NLTmargin HCSBmargin

        variant 2
        εξαδοσιοι εξηκοντα πεντε [= χξε]
        no English version
        Writing in the late second century, Irenaeus (Haer. 5.30) was aware of the reading "616" but denounced it as "heretical and deceptive." He claimed that "666" was found in "all the good and ancient copies" and was "attested by those who had seen John face to face." Three significant witnesses (P47 א A) must have their roots in those "good and ancient copies" because they read "666." However, the recently published P115 reads 616, as does Codex C. These are among the "good and ancient copies," and the number they contain, "616," is not heretical. Either "666" or "616" could be original inasmuch as both symbolize "Caesar Nero." In ancient times the letters of the Hebrew and Greek alphabet were used as numerals. The "number" of a name is the sum of the individual letters. The number "666," abbreviated in ancient manuscripts as χξς (χ = 600, ξ = 60, ς = 6), came from a Hebrew transliteration of the Greek for "Neron Caesar." The number "616," abbreviated in ancient manuscripts as χις, is either a Latin equivalent of the name "Nero Caesar" by way of gematria (see Aune 1998, 770-77; NETmg) or a different spelling of Neron Caesar, which drops the final "n" (Metzger 2003, 308). Both convey the same signification of the same person. As of yet, not one English translation prints "616" in the text, even though several note it. The note in HCSB says that one Greek manuscript plus other ancient evidence read "616." There are actually two ancient manuscripts, P115 and C.


        • #5
          Metzger and Ford re Nrwn Qsr

          From A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, by Bruce M. Metzger (via Accordance):
          13.18 ἑξήκοντα ἕξ {A} Instead of ἑξήκοντα, which is strongly supported by P47 ℵ P 046 051 all extant minuscules itgig vg syrph, h copsa, bo arm al, δέκα is read by C some manuscripts known to Irenaeus (who, however, says that 666 is found “in all good and ancient copies,” and is “attested by those who had themselves seen John face to face”) and Tyconiuspt. According to Tischendorf’s 8th ed., the numeral 616 was also read by two minuscule manuscripts that unfortunately are no longer extant (nos. 5 and 11; cf. C. R. Gregory, Prolegomena, p. 676). When Greek letters are used as numerals the difference between 666 and 616 is merely a change from ξ to ι (666 = χξϛ and 616 = χιϛ). Perhaps the change was intentional, seeing that the Greek form Neron Caesar written in Hebrew characters (קסר נרון) is equivalent to 666, whereas the Latin form Nero Caesar (נרו קסר) is equivalent to 616.

          On page 226 of the hardback copy of J. Massyngberde Ford's wonderfully researched Revelation: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary (The Anchor Bible, 1975), I find the following little gem supporting both the above comment by Metzger and, before that, the comment above by Philip W. Comfort:
          [D. R.] Hillers, commenting on the identification of Nero with 666 if it is spelled Nrwn Qsr, says: "It may now be pointed out that in an Aramaic document from Murabbaʾat (DID, II, 18, plate 29), dated 'second year of the Emperor Nero,' the name is spelled Nrwn Qsr, as required by the theory. The last two consonants of Qsr are damaged, but enough is preserved to show that no vowel letter was written between the Q and the s."

          The fact that the document from Murabbaʾat is Aramaic reminds me of C. C. Torrey's thesis that Revelation was originally written in Aramaic before being translated into Greek. I have always been inclined to be open-minded toward Torrey and his thesis, given my background as a student of the Professor of Semitic Languages, William Stinespring, at Duke in the mid-20th century. Stinespring spoke well of Torrey ― likewise a Professor of Semitic Languages, at Yale a generation earlier (1900-1932).
          Last edited by John Reece; 03-06-2014, 09:46 AM.


          • #6
            Continued from last post above ↑

            From The Apocalypse of John (Yale University Press, 1958) by Charles C. Torrey:
            13:18. We are now told in so many words that "the beast" is not just a symbol but an epithet designating an actual human being, whose person has been given some description in the verses in this chapter.

            The beast has conquered the world, and all nations and peoples worship him. This evidently shows that the beast is a Roman Emperor. The description is more emphatic, however. Three times, and with impressive emphasis (verses 3, 12, 14), this beast (emperor) is characterized as one who had recovered from a sword-stroke which had seemed to deal a mortal wound. This designates with certainty the emperor Nero, as no one doubts who knows the history of the legendary Nero redivivus.

            This identification is at once confirmed in another way. The name is not given directly, but its "number" is furnished, and he who has wisdom may "reckon" it.

            Each letter of the alphabet (Greek, Roman, or Semitic) has its fixed numeral value, and numbers, great or small, are commonly expressed by letters or combinations of letters. It was long ago seen to be probable, and is now certain, that the intended interpretation of the number 666 is found in the Semitic writing of the name Nerōn Qesar, Nero Caesar; the numerical values being as follows: nun = 50; resh = 200; waw = 6; nun = 50; qoph = 100; samekh = 60; resh = 200.
            Last edited by John Reece; 03-08-2014, 06:31 PM.


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