How would you like to date Targum Neofiti?

Maybe just the two of you, a nice dinner, maybe a little candle light…I am afraid I am talking about a different kind of dating.

A friend pointed me to this YouTube video by Mark Driscoll of Mars Hill. (I will give Driscoll credit, I see that his blog has a series on Charles Spurgeon, who I agree was one of the greatest preachers ever to live.) There are lots of things that we may quibble point out are wrong in this video on the Trinity, but shall we just start with the title topic, “Targum Neofiti?”


The first is the date. TgNeof is most likely late second century CE not BC(E) as Driscoll states. Furthermore, his entire argument rests on an erroneous translation. He says that TgNeof Gen. 1. reads “In the beginning with the Firstborn God created….” It should be “From the beginning, with wisdom, the Lord created…” The text reads ‏מלקדמין בחכמה ברא {ד}ייי I do not have a critical edition to hand and the text I just copied comes from the Accordance module, but I see no variants noted (other than the dalet in ד}ייי} ).

So the term “with wisdom” seems certain and it is certainly nothing like “firstborn,” ‏.בכורא What Neof is doing is referring to Prov. 3.19 “The LORD by wisdom founded the earth; by understanding he established the heavens.”

Feel free to offer other comments on the video. For the first time I have actually left comments on a YouTube video because I think this is so egregious. And for those who don’t know me as well and to be open and clear, I do believe in the Trinity, I just abhor bad sermons and errors.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

25 thoughts on “How would you like to date Targum Neofiti?”