Revelation 16:5 - Revelation 14:5

Steven Avery

Luke Carpenter

David Pareus' A Commentary Upon the Divine Revelation (1644) is extremely rare but can be found on the Early English Books Online Text Creation Partnership. I was definitely enriched by his thoughtful approach to the Apocalypse, and was happy to see why he was referenced so often in his day. On Rev 16:5, p. 384, Pareus clearly understood Beza to be saying in his GNT annotations that he found an ancient manuscript with the now common reading, reflecting a general understanding that Beza was not adding to the text (which is expressly forbidden in the book).
*Edit: Also see Thomas Brightman's commentary (1611) quoted in the comments!

Even Jan Krans and Steven Boyce’s friend at the Smithsonian all translated Beza as having an ancient manuscript.

Steven Avery

Revelation 14:5
Nick Sayers My scattered notes on it so far are here:

The only thing I've found text-critical-wise is from the Wordsworth-White Vulgate. It lists 7-8 Latin mss that have it as well as a citation of it from a spurious letter of Sulpicius Serverus (4th-5th century). I have no idea why this letter is disputed though. No currently known Greek mss contain it

Steven Avery

When the KJV Departs from the “Majority” Text
Jack Moorman (d. 2021)

Jeffrey Khoo quotes Beza concerning the reading “and shalt be” being seen in an ancient MS: “But with John there remains a completeness where the name of Jehovah (the Lord) is used, just as we have said before, 1:4; he always uses the three closely together, therefore it is certainly “and shall be”, for why would he pass over it in this place? And so without doubting the genuine writing in this ancient manuscript, I faithfully restored in the good book what was certainly there, shall he”(Cited by Khoo from Thomas Holland, Manuscript Evidence, emphasis added).

Khoo adds: “Besides the ancient Greek manuscript that Beza had, it ought to be noted that Beatus of Liebana in the eighth century, in his compilation of commentaries on the Book of Revelation has the Latin phrase, qui fuisti et futures es, for Revelation 16:5 which was found in the commentary of Tyconius which goes back to the fourth century. It is entirely possible that there were either early Greek manuscripts or Old Latin versions as early as the fourth century which contained the reading esomenos.” (Dean Burgon Society eNews, 89, emphasis added).

Herman Hoskier cites “and shalt be” in the Ethiopic Version with the following Latin translation: …Justus es, Domine, et Rectus qui fuisti et eris (“and will be”, Text of the Apocalypse. Alerted to by Jack McElroy).

The KJV reading is in harmony with the four other places in Revelation where this phrase is found.

1:4 “him which is, and which was, and which is to come”
1:8 “the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty”
4:8 “Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come”
11:17 “Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come”

Indeed Christ is the Holy One, but in the Scriptures of the Apostle John the title is found only once (1 John 2:20), and there, a totally different Greek word is used. The Preface to the Authorised Version reads:

“with the former translations diligently compared and revised”.

The translators must have felt there was good reason to insert these words though it ran counter to much external evidence. They obviously did not believe the charge made today that Beza inserted it on the basis of “conjectural emendation”. They knew that they were translating the Word of God, and so do we. Later the Elzivers clearly thought the same by placing it in their edition of the Received Text. The logic of faith should lead us to see God’s guiding providence in a passage such like this.

Nick Sayers


Theodore Beza

Itaque ambigere non possum quin germana sit scriptura quam ex vetusto bonae fidei manuscripto codice restitui, nempe ο εσομενος.

“Therefore, I am not able to doubt but that the true reading should be as I have restored it from an ancient manuscript [hand-written] codex of good faith, truly ο εσομενος.” - translation by Jeffrey Riddle
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Steven Avery



Revelation 16:5 (KJV)
And I heard the angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art, and wast, and shalt be, because thou hast judged thus.

Theodore Beza (1582 expanded to this in 1598)

Itaque ambigere non possum quin germana sit scriptura quam ex vetusto bonae fidei manuscripto codice restitui, nempe ο εσομενος.

“Therefore, I am not able to doubt but that the true reading should be as I have restored it from an ancient manuscript [hand-written] codex of good faith, truly ο εσομενος.” - translation by Jeffrey Riddle


Jan Krans calls Beza the author, yet says nothing about Beza's own statement that he had an ancient ms. with the reading. Apparently Jan Krans plans to argue that Beza was mistaken, some time in the future, see that in the Jeffrey Riddle page.

The phrase "conjectural emendation" is divided into two categories by Jan Krans. One which has ms. support. This is a discussion for another day.


The list from Jan Krans is helpful, however we can make additions.
(And in some cases, we could pull out the original source, in a url.)

Jan Krans omits Joseph Mede and Jean Joseph Hisely and Constantine Tischendorf, who quote the Beza Latin. And there are a number of writers in the last 35 years. See also the Nick Sayers page for more additions. (Nick mentions Tischendorf, in the context of James White, but he might also use the urls below for the three writers.) It is understood that Jan Krans would limit the modern entries, however, they have some of the most important material, especially Nick Sayers.


The Works of the Pious and Profoundly-learned Joseph Mede ...: Corrected and Enlarged According to the Author's Own Manuscripts
Joseph Mede (1586-1639)

Disputatio de historia Cappadociae, cui premittuntur descriptio Cappadociae et disquisitio de Cappadocum origine, lingua, religione (1836)
Jean Joseph Hisely (1800-1866)

Novum Testamentum graece: Ad antiquissimos testes denuo recensuit, Volume 3
Constantine Tischendorf (1815-1874)

The King James Only Controversy: Can You Trust Modern Translations? (1995 and 2009)
James White

Errors in the King James Version? A Response to William W. Combs of Detroit Baptist Seminary (2009)
Jeffrey Khoo

When the KJV Departs from the “Majority” Text (original 1988, then 2010)
Jack Moorman (d. 2021)

WM 120: White, Krans, Erasmus, and Beza: "One Volume Destruction"? (2019)
Jeffrey Riddle

Revelation 16:5 and the Triadic Declaration - A defense of the reading of “shalt be” in the Authorized Version
Nick Sayers - also a separate PDF


KJVToday, Kent Brandenburg, kjvodebate in 2009
Jan Krans

And more!

For a future post, the material that needs the most attention is Nick Sayers, perhaps Jack Moorman as well with material from Rev 1:4.

Also the definitions and theories of conjectural emendation (this is in Jeffrey Riddle).
emendatio ingenii ope (‘emendation by means of reasoning’),
emendatio codice ope (‘emendation by means of manuscripts’).
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Steven Avery


Hi Nick,

And I went through your paper tonight.

Revelation 16:5 and the Triadic Declaration
A defense of the reading of “shalt be” in the Authorized Version
Oct. 2016

Different than the textus-receptus site.

Here are questions and points that came up.

Like the Thomas Constable reference to Revelation 1:4.

The Jerome, Clement, Beatus and Haimo of Halberstadt predecessors are very helpful.

Also your showing that the early Greek mss. evidences are all over the map, and most mss. are late.

And I remember reading that Beza in 1598 had a part of the Latin that was added to the earlier editions.
Is that correct? As I did not see it in the paper. I could go back and look for the note.

You give the full Beza 1588 quote in English, which is wonderful. Usually we only get a shorter amount. The Latin would be good as well.
Picture from the paper:


Most of all, the Erasmus aspect. Amazing. Even noted by Newton. Erasmus should be in the Jan Krans conjectural emendation database. It is not necessary for it to be his actual text to make the database. If Jan Krans is honest about it, he will have the Erasmus note. Maybe he missed it ?? Not likely. Also he should put in Newton. These are key players (especially Erasmus, before Beza.)

Picture from the paper:



And I still recommend researching Revelation being written in Hebrew, and similar ideas!

Steven Avery
Dutchess County, NY, USA
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Steven Avery

From a Facebook discussion, which also includes David Pareus.

Thomas Brightman (1562-1607) is not in the Jan Krans database.

A revelation of the Apocalyps, that is, the Apocalyps of S. Iohn illustrated vvith an analysis & scolions where the sense is opened by the scripture, & the events of things foretold, shewed by histories. Hereunto is prefixed a generall view: and at the end of the 17. chapter, is inserted a refutation of R. Bellarmine touching Antichrist, in his 3. book of the B. of Rome. By Thomas Brightman.

Vince Krivda
Thomas Brightman on Revelation 16:5 in
A REVELATION OF THE APOCALYPS (1611);seq=447;vid=6819;page=root;view=text

"Which art, and which wast, and which shalt be: Thus dooth Theod. Beza set it down, out of an ancient hand-written copie. Aretas, the vulgar La∣tine, and Montanus, in sted of οσιος shalt be, doo read εσομενος, holy. The former celebrated God for cōstancie in his promises, that he is alwayes like himselfe, avenging wicked deeds in like sort now, as he punished thē in ages past. This latter togither with cōstācie ioyneth holines; as if he should say, which for thy constancy and holines canst let this wickednes goe no longer unpunished: but where a title is used, from the distribution of ti∣me, the two first articles are not wont to be put without the third; there∣fore the first reading seemeth to be the more true." p 432

Steven Avery

s30566Francis HuysheHuyshe, “Vindication (13)” (1834), p. 2871834Pro


Francis Huyshe (1768-1839) has a very interesting section.

British Magazine (1834)
Vindication of the Early Parisian Greek Press

After a discussion of Wetsten (Wetstein) and Griesbach criticizing Beza, we have:


He says that Beza discovered the reading in his book of collations, and a discussion of the Stephanus MSS and the Bengel notation.