The Septuagint is the most reliable Old Testament source that we possess.
We previously established that:
- There are multiple text families of the writings in the Bible and that there are differences between various copies of the Scriptures.
- The accuracy of our Bible’s translation matters because man lives by every word that GOD spoke.
In the previous principle, we looked at differences between the Hebrew Masoretic Text and the Greek Septuagint Old Testament sources.
This principle succinctly states the three reasons why the Septuagint (LXX) is, by far, the best Old Testament source that we possess:
- The Septuagint is substantially older than the Masoretic Text (MT).
- The Christians of the first few centuries A.D. universally used the Septuagint, as did the Jews of the first century.
- Most importantly, the Old Testament quotations in New Testament texts read virtually word-for-word the same about 95% of the time. (That’s much better than the Masoretic Text’s 50%!)
To put it bluntly, if you aren’t using the Septuagint for your Old Testament, you are not really reading the Bible.
While interest in the Septuagint is rapidly increasing, there are not yet many English Bibles that use the Septuagint as their Old Testament source text. At present, I recommend the Orthodox Study Bible (OSB) for reading and study, and the Apostolic Polyglot for in-depth study.
For more information about the Septuagint, watch this video.