Abba Moses' basket of sand

A brother of a Skete once committed a sin, and a council was held by the brethren to adjudicate the matter. They sent for Abba Moses, but he did not wish to come. The presbyter again sent for him, saying: "Come, we are all waiting for you." Then Abba Moses arose and took a basket with holes in the bottom, filled it with sand, and carried it on his back to the meeting. The Fathers came out to meet him, and when they saw him carrying the basket on his shoulders, they asked him: "What is this, Father?" The Elder replied to them: "They are my sins that are flowing out behind me, and I do not see them; and yet, I have come today to judge someone else's sins." When they heard this, they said nothing to the brother whom they wished to judge, but forgave him.

Archbishop Chrysostomos, Hieromonk Patapios et al., trans. and ed., The Evergetinos: A Complete Text, vol. III (Etna, CA: Center for Traditionalist Orthodox Studies, 2008), 24.

Would the real 1904/1912 Patriarchal Greek New Testament (PATr) please stand up?

When reading the New Testament, the main (Koine) Greek text that I consult is the Patriarchal Greek New Testament (PATr) that was published by the Patriarchal Press of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople in 1904. My understanding is that it was based on a little over 100 lectionary manuscripts from the 9th – 16th centuries and that it was corrected in 1912 by Professor Basil Antoniades of the Theological School of Chalki. As such, it is often abbreviated "PATr 1904/1912." Because I mainly use Verbum (AKA Logos Bible Software) when consulting the Greek text, I predominantly use their electronic edition which was published in conjunction with the Hellenic Bible Society. My understanding is that this text is in the public domain (and the Logos copyright information indicates as such).

However, I've noticed there appear to be several variations / streams of this text. Sources I've identified, all of which claim to be PATr 1904 and/or 1912 (some acknowledging later corrections), include (with unofficial abbreviations in the "Abbrev." column that are used only for the purposes of comparison in this article):

Abbrev. Description
eBible "1904 Patriarchal Greek New Testament with 20 corrections from later editions." Edited by Robert Adam Boyd.
Robinson "Dr. Maurice A. Robinson's ... New Testament Greek text of Antoniades' 1904/1912 Patriarchal edition." Dr. Robinson is credited as the primary editor and Jussi Ala-Konni as a contributor, along with Dr. Ulrik Sandborg-Petersen as the maintainer of the associated GitHub repository.
GOA Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America (GOA) website. "The Greek New Testament displayed is the authorized 1904 text of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. The Patriarchal text has been made available courtesy of the Greek Bible society and was digitized in XML in cooperation with the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese Department of Internet Ministries, the Greek BIble Society and the American BIble Society IT Department's OSIS project. The Open Scriptural Information Standard (OSIS) was developed by the Bible Technologies Group in co-sponsorship with the American Bible Society and the Society of Biblical Literature."
HBS Hellenic Bible Society (HBS) website. Πατριαρχικό Κείμενο (Έκδοση Αντωνιάδη, 1904). "Copyrighted by the Hellenic Bible Society, 2017." This text appears to be getting fetched via API calls to the American Bible Society's Bible API.
Logos Logos edition of The Patriarchal Greek New Testament (PATr 1904/1912) by the Hellenic Bible Society and Logos Bible Software.
Accordance Accordance edition of the Greek New Testament: Ecumenical Patriarchal Text (GNT-EPT). "Prepared by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople." "Basil Antoniades, ed. (1904/1912). Includes subsequent corrections by the Church of Greece." "Version 2.3."
e-Sword The "Greek New Testament" dated September 30, 2013 in e-Sword Bible downloads. "This Greek New Testament is the 1904 'Patriarchal' edition of the Greek Orthodox Church."

There are other electronic editions that claim to be this text, too, some of which almost certainly are not PATr, but for the purposes of this post I'll compare a few examples from the above editions to illustrate this issue.

Matthew 22:32

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... οὐκ ἔστιν ὁ Θεὸς Θεὸς νεκρῶν, ἀλλὰ ζώντων. eBible, Robinson, GOA, Logos, Accordance, e-Sword
... οὐκ ἔστιν ὁ Θεὸς νεκρῶν, ἀλλὰ ζώντων. HBS

Mark 4:3

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... ἐξῆλθεν ὁ σπείρων τοῦ σπεῖραι. eBible, Robinson, Logos, Accordance, e-Sword
... ἐξῆθεν ὁ σπείρων τοῦ σπεῖραι. GOA, HBS

I believe the GOA and HBS have a reading with invalid morphology for ἐξέρχομαι but am unsure (i.e., this may be an erroneous reading in those editions).

Mark 12:31

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... ἀγαπήσεις τὸν πλησίον σου ὡς ἑαυτόν. eBible, Robinson, Accordance
... ἀγαπήσεις τὸν πλησίον σου ὡς σεαυτόν. GOA, HBS, Logos, e-Sword

Luke 8:56

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
καὶ ἐξέστησαν οἱ γονεῖς αὐτῆς.... eBible, Robinson, Accordance, e-Sword
καὶ ἐξέστησαν οἱ γονεῖς αὐτοῖς.... GOA, HBS, Logos

John 19:31

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... ἡ ἡμέρα ἐκείνου τοῦ σαββάτου.... eBible, Robinson, HBS, Logos, Accordance, e-Sword
... ἡ ἡμέρα ἐκείνη τοῦ σαββάτου.... GOA

Acts 4:36

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... ἀπὸ τῶν ἀποστόλων.... eBible, Robinson, HBS, Logos, Accordance, e-Sword
... ὑπὸ τῶν ἀποστόλων.... GOA

Acts 16:34

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... καὶ ἠγαλλιᾶτο πανοικὶ πεπιστευκὼς τῷ Θεῷ. eBible, Robinson, HBS, Logos, Accordance ("ἠγαλλίατο")
... καὶ ἠγαλλιάσατο πανοικὶ πεπιστευκὼς τῷ Θεῷ. GOA, e-Sword

Acts 26:30

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... Βερνίκη.... eBible, Robinson, GOA, Accordance, e-Sword
... Βερενίκη.... Logos, HBS

2 Corinthians 8:2

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... βάθους πτωχεία αὐτῶν.... eBible, Robinson, HBS, Logos, Accordance, e-Sword
... βάθος πτωχεία αὐτῶν.... GOA

Hebrews 8:11

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
καὶ οὐ μὴ διδάξωσιν... eBible, Robinson, HBS, Logos, Accordance, e-Sword
καὶ οὐ μὴ διδάξουσιν.... GOA

James 4:14

Excerpted Text Matching Edition(s)
... ἀτμὶς γάρ ἔσται.... eBible, Robinson, GOA, Accordance
... ἀτμὶς γάρ ἐστιν.... HBS, Logos, e-Sword

I've only included a small number of examples and have excluded certain differences from consideration such as movable nu and other minor orthographical differences such as elision (e.g., αλλ` vs. αλλά, απ` vs. από), certain word-break differences (e.g., εἰμὴ vs. εἰ μὴ), verse numbering differences, etc. It's perplexing that they don't all differ in a consistent manner. These all claim to be reproductions of the PATr 1904/1912, but clearly have more variations between them that don't support them all being the same text. Granted, they are all very minor and in some cases untranslatable differences, but perhaps none of them accurately represents the printed edition of PATr from 1904 and/or 1912 (which would include any published errata). I understand that later editors are trying to correct what they perceive to be errors, but ideally clear version control would occur and these editors would document what was changed, or at least provide an updated date when the changes occurred (versus still calling it the 1904 and/or 1912 edition).

I think a little humility is in order here. As much as some scholars bemoan that ancient scribes (who hand-copied texts) created so many manuscript variants, the printing press—let alone structured electronic markup formats—clearly still haven't created more textual uniformity!

Also, this issue isn't limited just to PATr. Alan Bunning indicated that he ran into the same issue with other online texts including Westcott and Hort and Stephanus 1550, and I have seen this also with other electronic Greek New Testaments that are allegedly from some published edition (including some recently-published editions!).

I posted an earlier version of this article on the B-Greek forum. Many thanks to Jeff Dodson for assisting with collations and alerting me to the inconsistencies in the first place!

Anger as a check engine light of the soul

... anger is often linked with another passion—pride. Now we will go so far as to say that anger does not often appear as an independent or fundamental passion in the human heart. Most often anger expresses the dissatisfaction of another passion, or even of the casual desires that a person may have from time to time. In the latter case, anger is called impatience or obstinacy, which in turn are expressions of a general self-love, lack of brotherly love and lack of desire to attend to oneself and struggle with oneself. The stronger a passion is in a person, the quicker and more fiercely it turns into anger when it is not satisfied. Thus the vainglorious and lovers of money become envious, the lustful become jealous, the gluttonous become over-critical and irritable, and so on. In general, anger is an indication of various sinful passions, and one can find out about these by noticing when a person begins to get angry: if it is during a conversation about fasting and sobriety, then he sins with the passion of overeating and drunkenness; if it is on occasions when he loses money—love of money; if during talks about the saints' feats of humility—he is proud, and so on. This is why we began our instructions to spiritual fathers with the struggle against anger, as it is an involuntary indicator of other passions. A person's enslavement to them is expressed first of all as enslavement to anger, which bursts out even with very cunning people who are otherwise able to hide their passions and keep quiet about their bad habits.

Metropolitan Anthony (Khrapovitsky), Confession: A Series of Lectures on the Mystery of Repentance, trans. Fr. Christopher Birchall (Jordanville, NY: Holy Trinity Monastery, 1996), 53.

Defining morality in narrow terms

... far too often morality in the United States has been defined in very narrow terms, focusing on select groups of individuals and on very specific behaviors, such as sex and sexuality, marital status, and social standing (it is interesting to note that rarely do those criticizing the poor also frame behaviors such as greed or lacking compassion in moral terms).

Michelle E. Martin. Introduction to Human Services: Through the Eyes of Practice Settings, 4th ed. (New York: Pearson Education, 2018), 34.

A "literal" English Bible translation is inherently anglocentric

When we translate from a source language into a target language, there is no such thing as “keeping all the words”. Greek words are not English words and ruling that only specific translational glosses can be used, does not constitute keeping all the words. The English word ‘ears’ isn’t “all the words”. Translating ὦτα as ‘ears’ isn’t translating the words. It’s still translating the meaning. ὦτα is gone. If you choose that as a gloss, all of the original words are still gone. Literal translation prioritizes English over Greek by assuming that English words have some bizarre one-to-one correspondence to the original language that doesn’t actually exist.

This is the hidden lie in the English Bible tradition. Literal translations only exist in languages that already have a translation. A literal translation is the product of a community conventionalizing a set of target language glosses as authoritative over and against any other glosses. It places the authority of those conventions over the authority of the original text itself. It is, thus, for the English Bible tradition, inherently anglocentric. Without an existing tradition of translation, the idea of “keeping all the words” wouldn’t exist. All the words are Greek.

Mike Aubrey, "On literal translation: He that hath eeris of heerynge, heere he." From Koine-Greek blog. Retrieved November 26, 2022, from