Arthur Farstad

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Arthur Farstad was a conservative Baptist and a former editor at Thomas Nelson Publishers, he received his two doctorates one at the University of Basel and the other at Dallas Theological Seminary.

Farstad served as General Editor of the New King James Version (1982) and co-editor of The Greek New Testament According to the Majority Text. Farstad was a Teacher and Professor at Dallas Theological Seminary, he was also editor of the Journal of the Grace Evangelical Society.

Farstad began work on a modern English translation that was first named Logos 21. A Bible organization named Absolutely Free sponsored Logos 21 in 1996. Much of this work was later adapted by Holman Publishers, which contracted with Dr. Farstad to make a new, optimal-equivalence Bible translation that became known as the Holman Christian Standard Bible. The first edition was completed in 2003. Farstad agreed to join with the SS Board of the SBC, in their own project, incorporating his work with theirs, and He would become the overseer. Dr. Farstad intended to use the MT, which he had co-edited, as the textual basis for the NT. However, he suddenly died, a short while into the project, and the SS Board decided to use the UBS text, instead.

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Textus Receptus

Dr Farstad stated in his preface to the New King James Version:

"Today, scholars agree that the science of New Testament textual criticism is in a state of flux. Very few scholars still favour the Textus Receptus as such, and then often for its historical prestige as the text of Luther, Calvin, Tyndale, and the King James Version. For about a century most have followed a Critical Text (so called because it is edited according to specific principles of textual criticism) which depends heavily upon the Alexandrian type of text. More recently many have abandoned this Critical Text (which is quite similar to the one edited by Westcott and Hort) for one that is more eclectic. Finally, a small but growing number of scholars prefer the majority text, which is close to the traditional text except in the Revelation." Dr. Arthur Farstad, (Chairman of the NKJV Executive Review Committee)

Thus, we see that Dr Farstad deprecates the Textus Receptus. New Testament textual criticism is in a state of flux, he tells us; the old is no longer good, he implies. Very few scholars still favour that old-fashioned Textus Receptus, which was once universally recognised by the Church as the providentially preserved and pure text of all ages, and which once held universal sway as the Byzantine text for 1,400 years, the last nearly five hundred years as the printed Textus Receptus. But no, we must now set aside that old-fashioned text; we must turn instead to the Greek texts favoured by the REAL scholars: either to the critical text, which is favoured by most, or to the new so called Byzantine majority text which is favoured by an increasing minority of scholars. Thus, the editors of the NKJV will now do us a great favour by setting forth to us these better readings in the margin, these better readings which they have given in English in the margin, these better readings which overthrow and undermine the authority of the translation from the Textus Receptus we see in the main body of the text.

1 John 5:7

Dr. Arthur Farstad believed the Comma was not part of the original text:

Dr. Arthur Farstad: The Trinitarian controversy with the Arian heretics, they would have adored this verse if it had been in their text. It would be a clear verse for the Trinity and they never once mentioned it. So if they had had it, you can see…
Ankerberg: So the first councils back there in the 300s or 400s would have loved this verse.
Farstad: They would have adored it. And, you know, we believe in the Trinity.
Ankerberg: But they didn’t quote it.
Farstad: They didn’t quote it because they didn’t have it. It showed up first in the Latin and then years later it was put in the margin.

(Excerpted from The John Ankerberg Show series entitled: “Which English Translation of the Bible is Best for Christians to Use Today?”)

See Also

External Links

Eulogy for Dr. Arthur Leonard Farstad This is the actual eulogy delivered at Dr. Art Farstad's funeral on September 4, 1998 at the Mitchell Ministries Center at Dallas Theological Seminary.

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