Did Jerome in the Latin Vulgate Understand Discessio in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 as ‘Defection’ or ‘Physical Departure’?
How Did the Syriac Version Translate the Greek ‘Apostasia’ in 2 Thess 2:3?
Pretrib proponents have pointed out that early English Bibles such as Tyndale, Coverdale, and Geneva have rendered rebellion in v. 3 as “departing.”
The implication of the English word “depart” is suppose to suggest a “physical departing” and thus the concept of the rapture was in the mind of these English translators.
But this is not correct for a couple of reasons:
Appealing to sixteenth-century English versions to understand the meaning of a Greek word is naïve at best and only pushes the question back a step further: What did the sixteenth-century English word “departing” mean? Since the English word can be spatial or non-spatial in meaning.
These same early English versions use “departing” at Hebrews 3:12. For example the KJV reads, “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.” In this instance, “departing” is clearly non-spatial, which demonstrates that the translators did not use the English word “departing” as having a single technical meaning.
There is no evidence that these translators on this verse understood apostasia as a “spatial departure.”