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Jerome translated Matthew as: "Do penance, for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand." Erasmus translated as: "Be penitent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." Erasmus was also a strong defender of both Mark 16:9-21 and John 8:1- 12.He had courage, integrity, and faithfulness, which modern day scholars cannot seem to find.He rebuked and admonished the pope, the priesthood, and sinful practices of the monks.He constantly attacked sexual sins within the clergy.He was a professor of divinity at Cambridge, and was also offered many positions of honor and profit in the academic world.He declined all of them on one pretext or another because he apparently preferred the less certain rewards of independent literary activity.He knew that Jerome's translation had been based solely on the Alexandrian manuscript, Vaticanus, written itself early in the fourth century.
The Roman Catholic Church knew this could be dangerous to its plan to control the masses.Opponents of the reading today wrongly charge that the two manuscripts found had been specially produced just to oblige Erasmus's request, but this charge has never been validated and certainly was not held at the time of Erasmus's work.The Roman Catholic Church criticized his works for his refusal to use Jerome's Latin translation, a translation that he said was inaccurate.Erasmus published five editions of the New Testament in Greek. His first two editions did not contain I John 5:7 although the reading had been found in MANY non-Greek texts dating back as early as 150 A. Erasmus desired to include the verse but knew the conflict that would rage if he did so without at least one Greek manuscript for authority.Following the publication of his second edition, he said that he would include I John 5:7 in his next edition if just one Greek manuscript could be found which contained it.