What Happened to the Original Hebrew and Aramaic Manuscripts of the New Testament?

It is often objected by Christian apologists when they are faced with the documented evidence that the New Testament was originally written in Hebrew and Aramaic and later translated into Greek that we do not have any originals to prove this. They do not have any originals either, but cherry picking and special pleading is the name of the game when it comes to Christian Apologetics. What happened to the original Hebrew and Aramaic manuscripts? This is not a conspiracy theory folks. We know that the ancient Theological Library of Caesarea Maritima was destroyed in the 7th century by the Saracens and the Arabs. This Library was Eusebius’ Library and it is no surprise that we find his quotations of the New Testament strikingly different than the readings we have today. For instance the favorite reading of Matt. 28:19 is shockingly missing from many of Eusebius’ writings.

Eusebius, Church History (Book III, Chapter 5),

“2. For the Jews after the ascension of our Saviour, in addition to their crime against him, had been devising as many plots as they could against his apostles. First Stephen was stoned to death by them, and after him James, the son of Zebedee and the brother of John, was beheaded, and finally James, the first that had obtained the episcopal seat in Jerusalem after the ascension of our Saviour, died in the manner already described. But the rest of the apostles, who had been incessantly plotted against with a view to their destruction, and had been driven out of the land of Judea, went unto all nations to preach the Gospel, relying upon the power of Christ, who had said to them, Go and make disciples of all the nations in my name.”


Eusebius of Caesarea, Demonstratio Evangelica, [Tr. W.J. Ferrar (1920)] Book 3, Chapter 7,

“But while the disciples of Jesus were most likely either saying thus, or thinking thus, the Master solved their difficulties, by the addition of one phrase, saying they should (c) triumph “In MY NAME.” For He did not bid them simply and indefinitely make disciples of all nations, but with the necessary addition of ” In my Name.” And the power of His Name being so great, that the apostle says: “God has given him a name which is above every name, that in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth,” [[Phil. ii. 9.]] He shewed the virtue of the power in His Name concealed (d) from the crowd when He said to His disciples: “Go, and make disciples of all nations in my Name.” He also most accurately forecasts the future when He says: “For this gospel must first be preached to all the world, for a witness to all nations.” [[Matt.xxiv.14.]]



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