A Student's Guide to
New Testament Textual Variants

Paul's Letter to the Romans

Romans 1:13-9:23


Romans 1:13:

TEXT: "And I do not wish for plyou to be ignorant"
EVIDENCE: p26vid S A B C Dc K P Psi 81 ("we") 104 614 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect four lat vg syr cop
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: A

NOTES: "And I do not suppose plyou to be ignorant"
EVIDENCE: D* G three lat
TRANSLATIONS: NEBn

COMMENTS: The reading in the text in found in early manuscripts of several kinds of ancient text. The reading in the notes is found only in a few Western manuscripts.

Romans 1:29:

TEXT: "all kinds of unrighteousness, wickedness, greed"
EVIDENCE: {S A} B {C D(supp)c} 0172vid {33 81} 1739 1881 {cop}
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "all kinds of unrighteousness, fornication, greed"
EVIDENCE: {D(supp)* G} P {three lat}
TRANSLATIONS: none

NOTES: "all kinds of unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, greed"
EVIDENCE: L Psi {104} 614 630 1241 2495 Byz Lect {four lat? vg? syr(p)} syr(h)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV

NOTES: "all kinds of unrighteousness, greed"
EVIDENCE: K
TRANSLATIONS: none

COMMENTS: The manuscripts listed in braces include the words in a different word order. The Greek words for "wickedness" (PONHRIA) and "fornication" (PORNEIA) are spelled almost alike. Although it is possible that this caused copyists to accidently omit "fornication" through a mistake of the eye, it is more likely that "wickedness" was misread as "fornication" and then other copyists combined the two readings into one.

Romans 2:2:

TEXT: "·Now we know that the judgment of God"
EVIDENCE: A B D G K P Psi 81 104 614 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect three lat syr one cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV NASV NIV
RANK: B

NOTES: "·For we know that the judgment of God"
EVIDENCE: S C 33 five lat vg most cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn

OTHER: "·We know that the judgment of God"
EVIDENCE: 1906

TRANSLATIONS: RSV NEB TEV
COMMENTS: Paul often wrote "For we know" (see Rom. 7:14, 18; 8:22; 2 Cor. 5:1; 9:2; Philp. 1:19). Apparently some copyists replaced the text reading with the more familiar phrase. The text reading has better manuscript support.

Romans 3:7:

TEXT: "·But if by my falsehood"
EVIDENCE: S A 81 two lat cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NEB ("Again") TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "·For if by my falsehood"
EVIDENCE: B D G K P Psi 33 104 614 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect most lat vg syr cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASVn

OTHER: "·Someone might argue, 'If my falsehood'"
EVIDENCE: none

TRANSLATIONS: NIV
COMMENTS: The UBS Textual Committee felt that Paul's argument requires a parallel between verses 5 and 7 that is given by the reading "But."

Romans 3:22:

TEXT: "for all those who believe."
EVIDENCE: p40 S* A B C P Psi 81 104 630 1739 1881 syr(pal) cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: B

NOTES: "for all and on all those who believe."
EVIDENCE: Sc D G K 33 614 1241 2495 Byz Lect most lat later vg syr(p,h)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASVn

OTHER: "on all those who believe."
EVIDENCE: one lat earlier vg

COMMENTS: An early Latin translation of "for all" (or "to all," as it can be translated) was "on all." The reading in the notes is a combination of these two readings.

Romans 3:28:

TEXT: "·For we reckon that a man"
EVIDENCE: S A D* G Psi 81 630 1739 1881 lat vg syr(pal) cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "·Therefore we reckon that a man"
EVIDENCE: B C Dc K P 33 104 614 1241 2495 Byz syr(p,h)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV NASVn

OTHER: "·We reckon that a man"
EVIDENCE: Lect

COMMENTS: The context seems to favor "For" rather than "Therefore," since verse 28 gives a reason for the argument, not a conclusion from it. Perhaps "Therefore" was introduced when copyists took "we reckon" to mean "we infer" rather than "we consider." Verse 28 begins a new lesson in the Greek lectionaries which accounts for their omission of a conjunction.

Romans 4:1:

TEXT: "What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh, has found?"
EVIDENCE: S*,c {Sa} A C* {C3 D G Psi} 81 {lat vg} syr(pal) cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASV NASV NIV {TEV}
RANK: B

NOTES: "What then shall we say about Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh?"
EVIDENCE: B 1739 ("father")
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV NEB

NOTES: "What then shall we say that Abraham, our father, has found according to the flesh?"
EVIDENCE: K P 33 104 614 630 1241 1881 2495 Byz Lect syr(p,h)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV

COMMENTS: The evidence for the text that is in braces reads "father" instead of "forefather." The word for "has found" was perhaps accidently omitted because the word before it begins with the same letter. Although it is possible that its omission from two manuscripts and that fact that it is found in two different places in the others means that it was not original, it is not the sort of word that a copyist was likely to add. The rare word "forefather" (found only here in the New Testament) was changed to the much more common word "father" (used of Abraham in Luke 16:24, 30; John 8:53; Acts 7:2; and Romans 4:12). The second reading in the notes can be translated like the text reading.

Romans 4:19:

TEXT: "And although he did not weaken in faith, he considered his [own] body"
EVIDENCE: S A B C 81 1739 one lat earlier vg syr(p) syr(pal) ("And he . . . but he") cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "And since he did not weaken in faith, he did not consider his [own] body"
EVIDENCE: D G K P Psi 33 104 630 1241 1881 2495 Byz Lect most lat later vg syr(h)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV

COMMENTS: The difference in the readings are the omission and the inclusion of the word "not." Both readings make good sense. The text reading means that he was so strong in his faith that he could think about his bodily weaknesses and the reading in the notes means that he was so strong in his faith that he didn't have to think about his bodily weaknesses. The reading in the notes seems to be of later Western origins.

Romans 4:19:

TEXT: "his [own] body, which was already as good as dead"
EVIDENCE: S A C D K P Psi 33 81 104 1241 2495 Byz Lect one lat syr(h+) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV NASV TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "his [own] body, which was as good as dead"
EVIDENCE: B G 630 1739 1881 most lat vg most syr cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV NIV NEB

COMMENTS: The Greek word for "already" is in brackets in the UBS text. Although it is possible that it might have been added by copyists to heighten the account, the manuscript evidence would seem to indicate that it was original.

Romans 5:1:

TEXT: "since we are declared righteous by faith, we have peace with God"
EVIDENCE: Sa B3 G P Psi 0220vid 104 365 1241 1506 1739 1881 2464 2495 some Byz Lect two lat some vg syr(h) cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV NEBn TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "since we are declared righteous by faith, let us have peace with God"
EVIDENCE: S* A B* C D K 33 81 630 1175 some Byz most lat most vg syr(p,pal) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSVn NASVn NIVn NEB TEVn

COMMENTS: The difference between the two readings is that between a short "o" and a long "o." The variation probably arose due to a mistake of the ear. The UBS Textual Committee judged that the statement "we have peace" is more appropriate here than the exhortation "let us have peace."

Romans 5:2:

TEXT: "we also have obtained access by faith to this grace"
EVIDENCE: S*,c {Sa A ("in faith")} C K P Psi 33 81 104 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect most lat vg syr cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSVn NASV NIV TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "we also have obtained access to this grace"
EVIDENCE: B D G 0220 four lat cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV NEB

COMMENTS: The words "by faith" are enclosed in brackets in the UBS text. Although it is possible that they were added by copyists, it is also possible that they were omitted by copyists as redundant following verse 1. The reading "in faith" seems to be due to a mistake of the eye. The Greek word for "we have obtained" which is found right before "faith" ends in the same two letters that spell the Greek word for "in." Apparently copyists saw these letters twice, once as the end of the word and once as the word "in."

Romans 5:17:

TEXT: "the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness"
EVIDENCE: p46 S A C D G K P 33 81vid 614 630 1241 1739 1881 Byz Lect four lat cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV NASV NIV NEB
RANK: B

NOTES: "the abundance of grace and of righteousness"
EVIDENCE: B cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn

OTHER: "the abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness"
EVIDENCE: 88 104 1984 1985

TRANSLATIONS: RSV? TEV?
OTHER: "the abundance of grace and of the gift and of righteousness"
EVIDENCE: Psi 0221 2495 most lat vg syr(p,h)

COMMENTS: The stacking of genitives (that is, possessives) caused copyists to change the genitive "of the gift" to the accusative "the gift" or to add "and" or to omit "of the gift."

Romans 7:23:

TEXT: "making me captive within the law of sin"
EVIDENCE: S B D G K P Psi 33 1881 some Byz Lect lat vg cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASV ("under" or "in") NASV ("of" or "in") NIV ("of") NEB ("under" or "by means of")
RANK: B

NOTES: "making me captive to the law of sin"
EVIDENCE: A C 81 104 614 630 1241 1739 2495 some Byz
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASVn RSV TEV

COMMENTS: The difference in the two readings is the inclusion or omission of the Greek word for "in." The preposition "to" is implied by the case of the word "law." It is possible that "in" was omitted to make a parallel with "at war with the law of my mind" where the preposition "with" is also implied.

Romans 7:25:

TEXT: "But thanks [be] to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!"
EVIDENCE: Sa {B} C2 Psi 33 81 104 365 1506 cop(north) {cop(south)}
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn {RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV}
RANK: C

NOTES: "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord!"
EVIDENCE: S* A K P 614 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect syr
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV

OTHER: "The grace of God through Jesus Christ our Lord!"
EVIDENCE: D G ("of the Lord") lat (two "of the Lord") vg

COMMENTS: The evidence and translations listed above in braces omit the word "But." The same Greek word can be translated either "thanks" or "grace," depending on context. By changing "to God" to "of God" or "of the Lord" copyists gave the word the meaning "grace" and provided an answer to the previous question. The reading "I thank" may have arisen through a mistake of the eye, when copyists saw several letters twice. Thus TOUTOUCHARISTOTHEO may have been read as TOUTOUEUCHARISTOTOTHEO. The original reading of manuscript C is unreadable through Romans 8:3.

Romans 8:1:

TEXT: "no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus."
EVIDENCE: S* B D* G 1739 1881 two lat cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: A

NOTES: "no condemnation for those who in Christ Jesus walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit."
EVIDENCE: Sc Dc K P 33 104 614 630 1241 2495 Byz Lect two lat syr(h)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV NIVn

NOTES: "no condemnation for those who in Christ Jesus walk not according to the flesh."
EVIDENCE: A Db Psi 81 most lat vg syr(p)
TRANSLATIONS: none

COMMENTS: The additional words seem to have been added in two stages from verse 4.

Romans 8:2:

TEXT: "in Christ Jesus has set you free"
EVIDENCE: S B G 1739* four lat syr(p)
TRANSLATIONS: NASV NEB TEVn
RANK: D

NOTES: "in Christ Jesus has set me free"
EVIDENCE: A D K P 81 104 614 630 1241 1739c 1881 2495 Byz Lect five lat vg syr(h) cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASVn NIV TEV

NOTES: "in Christ Jesus has set us free"
EVIDENCE: Psi syr(pal) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: TEVn

COMMENTS: The reading "us" is a combination of "me" and "you." Since Paul uses the first person often in chapter seven, copyists would have been much more likely to change a singular "you" to "me" than vice versa.

Romans 8:11:

TEXT: "give life to plyour mortal bodies also through his Spirit"
EVIDENCE: S A C P2 81 104 2495 two lat syr(h,pal) cop
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "give life to plyour mortal bodies also because of his Spirit"
EVIDENCE: B D G K P* Psi 33 614 630 1241 1739 1881 Byz Lect most lat vg syr(p)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn NASVn

COMMENTS: The same preposition is translated "through" when used with the genitive case (as in the text reading) and "because of" when used with the accusative case (as in the reading in the notes). The UBS Textual Committee felt that the evidence was slightly stronger for the genitive.

Romans 8:21:

TEXT: "subjected [it], in hope ·that even the creation"
EVIDENCE: p46 A B C Dc K P Psi 33 81 104 614 630 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect syr(p)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV? NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "subjected [it] in hope; ·because even the creation"
EVIDENCE: S D* G syr(h,pal)
TRANSLATIONS: RSV? NASVn

COMMENTS: The text reading can be translated as the reading in the notes, using "because." However, the reading in the notes must be translated using "because." The reading in the notes apparently arose through a mistake of the eye, when the last two letters of hope were seen twice (ELPIDIOTI was read as ELPIDIDIOTI), making the following word definitely mean "because." The Latin and Coptic translations could be translations of either word.

Romans 8:23:

TEXT: "we wait for adoption [as sons], the redemption"
EVIDENCE: S A B C K P Psi 33 81 104 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect four lat vg syr(p,h) cop
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "we wait for the redemption"
EVIDENCE: p46vid D G 614 four lat
TRANSLATIONS: NEBn TEVn

COMMENTS: The word for "adoption [as sons]" was omitted by copyists either because they felt the apposition was clumsy and unnecessary or because they felt it contradicted verse 15.

Romans 8:24:

TEXT: "For who hopes for what he sees?"
EVIDENCE: p46vid B* {1739* ("anyone")}
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASVn NIV TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "For who waits for what he sees?"
EVIDENCE: {S* 1739margin} cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn

NOTES: "For why does anyone hope for what he sees?"
EVIDENCE: {Sc} B2 {C} D G {K P Psi 33 81 104 614 630 1241 1881 2495 Byz Lect} lat vg {syr(h)}
TRANSLATIONS: {KJV ASVn NASV NEBn}

NOTES: "For why does anyone wait for what he sees?"
EVIDENCE: {A} syr(p) {cop(south)}
TRANSLATIONS: {NEB}

COMMENTS: The word "waits" was probably introduced by copyists from verse 23. The Greek words for "who" and "anyone" are spelled alike in Greek with only a difference in accent, but accent was not marked in early manuscripts. The evidence and translations enclosed in braces add the word for "also." Since the words for "why," "anyone," and "who" all begin with the same two letters, it is possible that "why" was accidently omitted through a mistake of the eye. It is also possible that it was accidently inserted when PEITISEL was read as PEITISTIEL.

Romans 8:28:

TEXT: "he works all things together for good" or "all things work together for good"
EVIDENCE: S C D G K P Psi 33 104 614 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect lat vg syr(p,h) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSVn NASVn NIVn NEB TEVn
RANK: C

NOTES: "God works all things together for good"
EVIDENCE: p46 A B 81 cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV NASV NIV NEBn TEV

COMMENTS: There was a tendency for copyists to supply a noun subject where only a pronoun is implied in the verb, as here. The reading "God" is found only in manuscripts of the Alexandrian type of ancient text, while it is omitted in early manuscripts of several kinds of ancient text.

Romans 8:34:

TEXT: "more [than that], was raised, who"
EVIDENCE: p27vid p46 Sa B D G K 614 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect lat vg syr(p,h)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV NASV NIV TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "more [than that], was raised from the dead, who"
EVIDENCE: S*,c A C Psi 33 81 104 cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASVn NEB

COMMENTS: The words "from the dead" are a natural addition to "raised" when writing about the resurrection of Christ. The additional words are found only in manuscripts of the Alexandrian type of ancient text.

Romans 8:35:

TEXT: "Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?"
EVIDENCE: C D G K Psi 33 81 104 614 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect lat vg syr(p,h) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: B

NOTES: "Who shall separate us from the love of God?"
EVIDENCE: S cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn NASVn

OTHER: "Who shall separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus?"
EVIDENCE: B

COMMENTS: The readings "God" and "God in Christ Jesus" seem to have been taken by Alexandrian copyists from verse 39.

Romans 9:4:

TEXT: "the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law"
EVIDENCE: S C K Psi 33 81 104 614 630 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect most lat earlier vg syr(p,h) most cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "the glory, and the covenant, and the giving of the law"
EVIDENCE: p46 B D G three lat later vg some cop(north) cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: TEVn

COMMENTS: Although it is possible that copyists who knew of the several Old Testament covenants changed the singular to the plural, it is more likely that copyists changed the plural to the singular either because the other items in the series are singular, or because they felt that only the Mosaic covenant belonged to the Jews.

Romans 9:23:

TEXT: "fit for destruction, ·and [this] so that he"
EVIDENCE: p46vid S A D G K P Psi 33 81 104 614 630 1241 1739* 1881 2495 Byz Lect five lat syr(p,h) some cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV NASV NEB TEV
RANK: B

NOTES: "fit for destruction, ·so that he"
EVIDENCE: B 1739margin four lat vg some cop(north) cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV NIV

COMMENTS: The omission of "and" was probably an attempt by copyists and translators to simplify the grammatical construction of the sentence.


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