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C O R R E C T I O N S T O T H E T E X T O F S C R I P T U R E c h a p t e r 71 “But I certainly do not trust your teachers when they refuse to admit that the translation of the Scriptures made by the seventy elders at the court of King Ptolemy of Egypt is a correct one, but attempt to make their own translation.1 2. “I would also have you know that from the version composed by those elders at the court of Ptolemy, they have deleted entire passages in which it is clearly indicated that the crucified one was foretold as God and man, and as about to suffer death on the cross. But, since I know that all you Jews deny the authenticity of these passages, I will not start a discussion about them, but I will limit the controversy to those passages which you admit as genuine. 3. “Thus far, you have admitted the authenticity of all my quotations, except this, Behold, a virgin shall conceive, which you claim should read, Behold, a young woman shall conceive.2 And I promised to show that this prophecy was not spoken of Hezekiah , as you were taught, but of my Christ. This I now intend to prove.” 4. “Before you do,” interrupted Trypho, “we would like you to quote some of the passages you claim were entirely omitted [from the elders’ translation].” 111 1. Perhaps the translations of Aquila, Theodotion, and Symmachus. See Dial. 68.7 n 20. 2. Is 7.14. See Skarsaune, 42. 112 st. justin martyr c h a p t e r 72 I replied, “I will do as you wish. They have deleted the following passage in which Esdras expounded the law of the Passover: And Esdras said to the people: This Passover is our Savior and refuge. And if you have understood, and it has entered into your hearts, that we are about to humiliate him on a cross,3 and afterwards hope in him, then this place will never be forsaken, said the Lord of hosts. But if you will not believe him, nor listen to his teaching, you shall be a laughingstock of the Gentiles.4 2. “They have also expunged these words from Jeremiah: I was as a meek lamb that is carried to be a sacrificial victim; they devised counsels against me, saying: Come, let us put wood on his bread, and cut him off from the land of the living, and let his name be remembered no more.5 3. “And since this pericope from the words of Jeremiah is still found in some copies of Scripture in the Jewish synagogues (for it was deleted only a short time ago), and since it is also proved from these words that the Jews planned to crucify Christ himself and to slay him, and since he is shown, as was likewise prophesied by Isaiah, as led like a lamb to slaughter, and in accordance with this passage he is marked as an innocent lamb, they are so confused by such words that they resort to blasphemy . 4. Similarly have they removed the following words from the writings of the same Jeremiah: The Lord God, the Holy One of Israel , remembered his dead that slept in their graves, and he descended to preach to them his salvation.6 3. Literally, “a sign.” Justin refers to the cross as sign by metonymy in many places, e.g., 1 Apol. 60; Dial. 94, 111. See Otto’s notes to these passages in his edition. 4. Cited also in Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History 4.18.8 and Lactantius, Divine Institutes 4.18 (but with variants). See Daniélou, 101–2, who identifies it as a Jewish-Christian midrash on II Esdras which is, as p. 101 n 42 explains, “the LXX ‘Esdraq B’, corresponding to the MT Ezra, not the apocalyptic II Esdras of the Apocrypha, referred to throughout as II (4) Esdras.” See also Skarsaune, 40–42, 452, and, most recently, Fédou, 107–8. 5. Jer 11.19. See Daniélou, 102–5; Skarsaune, 40, 178, 301, 452. 6. This passage is not found in any extant Bible manuscript. Irenaeus quotes it in Against Heresies 3.20, attributing it to Isaiah, but in Against Heresies 4.22 and c h a p t e r 73 “Furthermore, from a verse of the Ninety-fifth...


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