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(1.00) (Mat 11:21)

sn Chorazin was a town of Galilee that was probably fairly small in contrast to Bethsaida and is otherwise unattested. Bethsaida was declared a polis by the tetrarch Herod Philip, sometime after a.d. 30.

(1.00) (Luk 10:13)

sn Chorazin was a town of Galilee that was probably fairly small in contrast to Bethsaida and is otherwise unattested. Bethsaida was declared a polis by the tetrarch Herod Philip, sometime after a.d. 30.

(0.70) (Joh 1:44)

sn Although the author thought of the town as in Galilee (12:21), Bethsaida technically was in Gaulanitis (Philip the Tetrarch’s territory) across from Herod’s Galilee. There may have been two places called Bethsaida, or this may merely reflect popular imprecision – locally it was considered part of Galilee, even though it was just east of the Jordan river. This territory was heavily Gentile (which may explain why Andrew and Philip both have Gentile names).

(0.57) (Luk 9:10)

tc There is a seeming myriad of variants for this text. Many mss read εἰς τόπον ἔρημον (ei" topon erhmon, “to a deserted place”; א*,2 [1241]) or εἰς τόπον ἔρημον πόλεως καλουμένης Βηθσαϊδά (ei" topon erhmon polew" kaloumenh" Bhqsai>da, “to a deserted place of a town called Bethsaida”; [A] C W Ξmg [Ë1,13] [565] Ï) here, while others have εἰς κώμην λεγομένην Βηδσαϊδά (ei" kwmhn legomenhn Bhdsai>da, “to a village called Bedsaida”; D), εἰς κώμην καλουμένην Βηθσαϊδά εἰς τόπον ἔρημον (ei" kwmhn kaloumenhn Bhqsai>da ei" topon erhmon, “to a village called Bethsaida to a deserted place”; Θ), or εἰς τόπον καλουμένον Βηθσαϊδά (ei" topon kaloumenon Bhqsaida, “to a place called Bethsaida”; Ψ). The Greek behind the translation (εἰς πόλιν καλουμένην Βηθσαϊδά, ei" polin kaloumenhn Bhqsai>da) is supported by (Ì75) א1 B L Ξ* 33 2542 pc co. The variants can be grouped generally into those that speak of a “deserted place” and those that speak of a place/city/town called Bethsaida. The Byzantine reading is evidently a conflation of the earlier texts, and should be dismissed as secondary. The variants that speak of a deserted place are an assimilation to Mark 6:32, as well a harmonization with v. 12, and should also be regarded as secondary. The reading that best explains the rise of the others – both internally and externally – is the one that stands behind the translation and is found in the text of NA27.

(0.57) (Luk 9:10)

sn Bethsaida was a town on the northeast side of the Sea of Galilee. Probably this should be understood to mean a place in the vicinity of the town. It represents an attempt to reconcile the location with the place of the miraculous feeding that follows.

(0.21) (Joh 5:2)

tc Some mss (א [L] 33 it) read Bethzatha, while others read Bethsaida (Ì[66],75 B T Ws [Ψ] pc vg); codex D has Belzetha. A lot of controversy has surrounded the name of the pool itself: The reading of the Byzantine (or majority) text (A C Θ 078 Ë1,13 Ï), Bethesda, has been virtually discarded by scholars in favor of what is thought to be the more primitive Bethzatha, even though many recent translations continue to employ Bethesda, the traditional reading. The latter is attested by Josephus as the name of a quarter of the city near the northeast corner of the temple area. He reports that the Syrian Legate Cestius burned this suburb in his attack on Jerusalem in October a.d. 68 (J. W. 2.19.4 [2.530]). However, there is some new archaeological evidence for this problem. 3Q15 (Copper Scroll) from Qumran seems to indicate that in the general area of the temple, on the eastern hill of Jerusalem, a treasure was buried in Bet áEsdatayin, in the pool at the entrance to the smaller basin. The name of the region or pool itself seems then to have been Bet ᾿Esda, “house of the flowing.” It appears with the dual ending in the scroll because there were two basins. Bethesda seems to be an accurate Greek rendition of the name, while J. T. Milik suggests Bethzatha is a rendition of the Aramaic intensive plural Bet áEsdata (DJDJ 3, 271). As for the text of John 5:2, the fundamental problems with the Bethesda reading are that it looks motivated (with an edifying Semitic etymology, meaning “House of Mercy” [TCGNT 178]), and is minimally attested. Apart from the Copper Scroll, the evidence for Bethesda is almost entirely shut up to the Byzantine text (C being the most notable exception, but it often has Byzantine encroachments). On the one hand, this argues the Byzantine reading here had ancient, semitic roots; on the other hand, since both readings are attested as historically accurate, a decision has to be based on the better witnesses. The fact that there are multiple readings here suggests that the original was not well understood. Which reading best explains the rise of the others? It seems that Bethzatha is the best choice.



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