English Translation of the Septuagint Online
For several hundred years, the vast majority of Christians used the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament. This translation, known as the Septuagint, was prepared by Jews, not Christians, during what we call the "Intertestamental Period." It is quoted often in the New Testament. A review copy of the translation is available on the web in PDF format. The value of the Septuagint is that it offers the contemporary reader the most ancient translation of the Old Testament available, thus providing a perspective on how the OT was understood by Jews before the time of Christ. Thus, it is particularly fascinating, and led to no little debate between Jews and Christians in the first centuries of the church, when we read in Isaiah 7:14 an absolutely unambiguous assertion of a birth of a child from a virgin, not young woman, a virgin. The Greek uses the word "parthenos" to translate the Hebrew "almah" which may be translated simply as "young woman" but the Jewish translators of the Septuagint used the word "Virgin." Many other examples of this kind of thing abound in the Septuagint. The Septuagint was "the Bible" for many of the greatest church fathers, for example, St. Augustine who vigorously debated the authority of the Septuagint with St. Jerome, who of course, translated the Hebrew Old Testament into Latin.