Stephen W. Frary, «Who Was Manifested In The Flesh? A Consideration Of Internal Evidence In Support Of A Variant In 1 Tim 3:16A», Vol. 16 (2003) 3-18
1 Tim 3:16 contains a textual variant in the initial line of what is considered to be a hymn fragment which is difficult if not impossible to resolve based on external evidence. This verse thus provides an interesting test case by which we might examine the differing and often contradictory ways that the leading schools of textual criticism use the agreed canons of their trade to arrive at the original reading from the internal evidence. This paper outlines the difficulties in the external evidence, and considers how answers to three key questions about the internal readings of the text result in contradictory findings. The author concludes that thoroughgoing eclecticism (consideration of internal evidence alone) cannot determine the original text and thus only a reexamination of external evidence or the likely transmissional history can resolve the question.