John 5:2

John 5:2 [Textus Receptus (Elzevir) (1624)]320
Ἔστι δὲ ἐν τοῖς Ἱεροσολύμοις ἐπὶ τῇ προβατικῇ κολυμβήθρα, ἡ ἐπιλεγομένη Ἑβραϊστὶ Βηθεσδά, πέντε στοὰς ἔχουσα.

John 5:2 [Codex Sinaiticus (א or 01) (4th century)]q80f3rc4
εν<σ>τιν δε εν τοις Ϊεροσολυμοις <εν τη> προβατικη κολυμβηθρα το <η επι>λεγομενον<ι> εβραϊστι βηθζαθα πεντε στοας εχουσα·

John 5:2 [Codex Alexandrinus (A02) (5th century)]45rc2
εστιν δε εν τοις Ϊεροσολυμοις· εν τη προβατικη κολυμβηθρα· η επιλεγομενη εβραϊστι βηθεσδα· πεντε στοας εχουσα·

John 5:2 [Codex Vaticanus Gr. 1209 (B03) (4th century)]63ac2-3
εστιν δε εν τοις Ϊεροσολυμοις επι τη προβατικη κολυμβηθρα η επιλεγομενη εβραϊστι βηθσαϊδα πεντε στοας εχουσα

John 5:2 [Codex Ephraemi Syri Rescriptus (C04) (5th century)]

John 5:2 [Codex Bezae Cantabrigiensis (D05) (5th century)]118v|206
Εστιν δε εν τοις Ϊεροσολυμοις εν τη προβατικη κολυμβηθρα η λεγομενη εβραϊστι βελζεθα πεντε στοας εχουσα

Critical Apparatus :

(1) εστι : ℓ339
(2) εστιν : א¹, A, B, D, W, ℓ1, ℓ1086
(3) εντιν : א*

(4) επι τη : B, W, ℓ1, ℓ339, ℓ1086
(5) εν τη : א¹, A, D
(6) OMIT επι τη : א*

(7) προβατικη : א, A, B, D, W, ℓ1, ℓ339
(8) προβατηκη : ℓ1086

(9) η επιλεγομενη : א¹, A, B, ℓ1, ℓ339, ℓ1086
(10) τη επιλεγομενη : W
(11) η λεγομενη : D
(12) το λεγομενον : א*

(13) εβραιστι : א, A, B, D, W, ℓ1, ℓ1086
(14) εβραιστη : ℓ339

(15) βηθεσδα : A, ℓ339, ℓ1086
(16) βιθεσδα : ℓ1
(17) βηθσαιδα : B, W
(18) βηθζαθα : א
(19) βελζεθα : D

(20) πεντε : א, A, B, D, ℓ1, ℓ339, ℓ1086
(21) ε : W



A Textual Commentary On John 5:2

(a) The latest number of the Theologische Studien und Kritiken (1902, i. p. r33 ff.) contains a suggestive article on ‘The Pool Bethesda,’ by Lic. E. Brose. In one respect, however, the article is not sufficient. Brose objects to the received translation, ‘House of Mercy,’ on the ground that the pool itself was called ‘Bethesda,’ and that a pool cannot well be called house of mercy or ‘charite’ (like the famous hospital in Berlin).
Very good ; but was Bethesda the name of the pool, and not of the house adjoining it? Brose does not even mention the reading adopted by B. Weiss in the text, and first mentioned, among modern editions, by Tregelles on the margin, which spells κολυμβήθρᾳ with iota subscriptum, placing it in the dative : ‘There was above the sheep-pool (a house) which was called in Hebrew Bethesda, having five porches‘ I do not know who was the first to start this explanation. Matthew Poole quotes it in his Synopsis from Castalio, who tersely said : ‘κολυμβήθρᾳ lego :
(1) quod προβατικη sine substantivo non bene poneretur, (2) quia sic piscina vocaretur Bethesda, quod non piscinam, sed domum sonet.’

It is there further stated that Flacius Illyricus also proved this explanation. I do not intend to enter into a minute discussion of this reading, I only wish to call the attention of readers to the fact that by a curious chance, by a mere clerical error, quite against their intention, Westcott-Hort have given this very reading as their own text in their Notes on Select Readings in vol. ii. p. 76 (in both impressions, 1882 and 1896), while in the text they read κολυμβήθρα as nominative without iota.

On the various forms of the name (Βηθζαθα, Βηθσαιδα, Βηθεσδα) I can only say that the received form Βηθεσδα may have arisen by transposition from Βηθσαιδα, after it was pronounced Bethseda ; but the other way is equally possible, that Bethesda went over in MSS into the better-known Βηθσαιδα. A strong prejudice for the received explanation, ‘House of Mercy,’ is raised by the spelling of the Syriac versions (בית חסדא). For it is to be observed that these translators had either some knowledge of the original form of the names or a good etymological feeling. The names Κηφας and Καιαφας, for instance, both beginning with K, they spell quite differently, כאפא and קיפא, exactly according to their etymology. The reading Βηθζαδα, which is perhaps the best attested, is spelt by Barhebneus בית צאתא, i.e. ‘ House of the Excrements.’ There was a tradition that the sheep of ‘the offerings’ were washed there. He further mentions that some ascribed the healing power of the water to the fact that the body of the prophet Isaiah was buried there. Very curious is the translation of the Palestine-Syriac version : ‘There was at the entrance a fish-tank,’ על מעולא פסקינא  1, and of some old-Latin MSS: ‘In inferiore parte natatoria piscina.’ The explanation of Delitzsch, ‘House of the Porches ‘ (Zeitschrift für lutherische Theologie, 1856, 4) is, at all events so clever that it does not deserve the oblivion into which it seems to have fallen. Equally clever is the explanation proposed by the Dutch scholar Cramer (Exegetica et critica, I. 1890, p. 64), βηθζετα = בּית שׂיתא, ‘House of the Sheep.’ Against the explanation בית אשׁדא, ‘House of Outpouring,’ speaks the circumstance that a noun, אשׁדּא, ‘outpouring,’ is not known as yet in literature.
(Eb. Nestle, THE EXPOSITORY TIMES, Vol. 13, October 1901-September 1902, pp. 332-333)




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