Moses and His Horns

I learned a fascinating fact from my study Bible today in Exodus 34: 29-35 where the Israelites were afraid to come near Moses because his face was radiating from talking with God. The commentary said the words “was radiant” is close to the Hebrew noun for “horn.” When scriptures were translated from Hebrew to Vulgate Latin, the Hebrew word meaning “radiant” was mistranslated to “horn(s),” therefore, Moses was believed to have horns on his head after talking with God as shown in medieval art.

240px-'Moses'_by_Michelangelo_JBU160  240px-'Moses'_by_Michelangelo_JBU310

Statue of Moses by Michelangelo in the Church of San Pietro in Vincoli (Saint Peter in Chains) in Rome.

Although I’m sure this was an innocent mistake, people today still misinterpret and abuse scripture. They try to get the Bible to say what they want it to mean instead of what God says it is. They attempt to clear their consciousness and justify their lifestyle of sin when the Bible is clear about sin. Hebrews 10:26-27 (New International Version) states, “If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.”……

I’m sure glad scholars where able to discover the correct translation of the Hebrew word meaning “radiant.”  I would hate to think of Christians growing horns on their heads after learning the truth about God/Jesus and sin.



by Francois Perrier (1594-1649)

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