Normative Judaism, or evolution from/after the Septuagint?

Discussion about the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint, pseudepigrapha, Philo, Josephus, Talmud, Dead Sea Scrolls, archaeology, etc.
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spin
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Hellenism & Judaism

Post by spin » Fri Oct 11, 2013 6:00 pm

I don't find anything unreasonable about the following as a thesis:
MrMacSon wrote:I think my thesis is clear - there was upheaval from the times of the Hellenism of Judaism (including the Maccabee Revolt) through to the end of the Roman-Jewish Wars (by which most Jews had been exiled or enslave or both): there would have been disruptions to may communities and religious orders, as evidenced by the many new literary works of those times.
Half of the book of Daniel was written after the start of the Hellenistic crisis. I would argue that the books of Ezra, Nehemiah and Chronicles as we have them today were well after the end of the crisis, probably in the Pharisaic ambit. How did Esther get into the canon?

Worse though, when was Genesis actually written--mainly written? That's not so easy to answer. The narratives it contains may have been in circulation for a long time, but it features the orthodox resolution of the origin of sin, thereby sidelining the logic of Enoch's watchers narrative. Isn't that a sign of major dispute in the time period indicated by MrMacSon's thesis?

Stephan, I think you should work with the possibility a bit more. Our timeline is certainly not fixed. When did the exodus narrative migrate out of Egypt? And is it based on a response to Ptolemaic propaganda against the Jews preserved by Josephus in Contra Apion?
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Re: Hellenism & Judaism

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Oct 11, 2013 6:14 pm

spin wrote:Half of the book of Daniel was written after the start of the Hellenistic crisis. I would argue that the books of Ezra, Nehemiah and Chronicles as we have them today were well after the end of the crisis, probably in the Pharisaic ambit. How did Esther get into the canon?

... The narratives [that Genesis] contains ... features the orthodox resolution of the origin of sin, thereby sidelining the logic of Enoch's watchers narrative. Isn't that a sign of major dispute in the time period indicated by MrMacSon's thesis?

... When did the exodus narrative migrate out of Egypt? And is it based on a response to Ptolemaic propaganda against the Jews preserved by Josephus in Contra Apion?
Cheers. It is this sort of dialogue I was hoping to see. Ironically, I did not see "Isn't that a sign of major dispute in the time period indicated by MrMacSon's thesis?" until I quoted and edited spin's post. That puts points about Genesis featuring 'the orthodox resolution of the origin of sin', and "Enoch's watchers narrative" (of which I know nothing) on my radar.

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Re: Hadrian and the Christians

Post by stephan happy huller » Fri Oct 11, 2013 7:56 pm

I guess we are on two different planets but I am only concerned about what is fundamental to the religion - the Pentateuch. The rest is garbage for all I am concerned. How people govern their lives was developed from this source and it can't change very much. The text is too limiting. I am not interested in whether community develop a particular ideosyncratic text or that. The Israelite religion is fundamentally concerned with fulfilling commandments. As I said if a messianic figure came along and gave additional books and commandments that is a different story. But Jewish identity as such is pretty consistent throughout time and space. I don't know what the Qumran texts represent. No one does.
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Re: Hadrian and the Christians

Post by andrewcriddle » Sat Oct 12, 2013 1:48 am

stephan happy huller wrote:There must have been enough Christians in 177 CE to justify the persecutions in Gaul. If they were some insignificant group, why persecute them?
I think the persecutions in Gaul are partly measures against an unpoplular etnic minority. Christians were a significant minority among immigrants into Gaul from the Eastern Mediterranean although they probably had very little support among the native population.

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Re: Hadrian and the Christians

Post by Duvduv » Sat Oct 12, 2013 4:29 pm

They could not have only considered the 10 Commandments because they followed the laws of the Torah and believed the Torah was given to Moses at Mt. Sinail.

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Re: Hadrian and the Christians

Post by stephan happy huller » Sat Oct 12, 2013 4:31 pm

But the rabbinic tradition makes clear that the Sadducees read the Pentateuch this way. So too the Samaritans. Aquila too (that's why he wasn't circumcised). Read Heschel Heavenly Torah.
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Re: Hadrian and the Christians

Post by Duvduv » Sat Oct 12, 2013 4:33 pm

Please be a bit more specific in your argument here.
stephan happy huller wrote:But the rabbinic tradition makes clear that the Sadducees read the Pentateuch this way. So too the Samaritans.

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Re: Normative Judaism, or evolution from/after the Septuagin

Post by stephan happy huller » Sat Oct 12, 2013 11:22 pm

Read this. http://books.google.com/books?id=WAGK8G ... ah&f=false It is to the study of the rabbinic tradition what Jimi Hendrix was to the guitar. There is nothing more to say. He's a rabbi. You should like him. I heard a lot of story about Heschel from those who hung out at the Jewish Theological Seminary in the sixties and seventies. Some funny stories about how he and Theodore Gaster. Heschel was still kosher, Gaster wasn't. But then again the wife of one of the professors at Brown told me that Jacob Neusner didn't always eat kosher. Didn't have a television in house. Said he couldn't afford it.
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Re: Evolution from/after the Septuagint

Post by Blood » Tue Oct 15, 2013 4:37 am

MrMacSon wrote:See the current sections Influence of Hellenistic Judaism and the next section 'Decline of the 'Hellenistai' and partial conversion to Christianity' in Wikipedia,

and the section on The First Book of Maccabees "held as canonical scripture by some Christian churches (including Catholic, Orthodox and Coptic churches), but not by Protestant denominations"
In the first chapter, Alexander the Great conquers the territory of Judea, only to be eventually succeeded by the Seleucid Antiochus IV Epiphanes. After successfully invading the Ptolemaic kingdom of Egypt, Antiochus IV captures Jerusalem and removes the sacred objects from the Jerusalem temple, slaughtering many Jews. He then imposes a tax and establishes a fortress in Jerusalem.

Antiochus then tries to suppress public observance of Jewish laws, in an attempt to secure control over the Jews. He desecrates the Temple by setting up an "abomination of desolation" (that is, establishing rites of pagan observance in the Temple, or sacrificing an unclean animal on the altar in the Holy of Holies)

... [snip] ... But 1 Maccabees also insists that there were many Jews who sought out or welcomed the introduction of Greek culture.

....
I wouldn't put too much stock in 1 Maccabees. It's pseudo-history, not based on eyewitness testimony, the letters are invented, and I believe it's much later than the second century BCE. It may even be a Christian or proto-Christian text. It's significant that no copy was found at Qumran -- it simply was not part of the Hebrew Bible.
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Re: Hellenism & Judaism

Post by Blood » Tue Oct 15, 2013 4:46 am

spin wrote:I don't find anything unreasonable about the following as a thesis:
MrMacSon wrote:I think my thesis is clear - there was upheaval from the times of the Hellenism of Judaism (including the Maccabee Revolt) through to the end of the Roman-Jewish Wars (by which most Jews had been exiled or enslave or both): there would have been disruptions to may communities and religious orders, as evidenced by the many new literary works of those times.
Half of the book of Daniel was written after the start of the Hellenistic crisis. I would argue that the books of Ezra, Nehemiah and Chronicles as we have them today were well after the end of the crisis, probably in the Pharisaic ambit. How did Esther get into the canon?

Worse though, when was Genesis actually written--mainly written? That's not so easy to answer. The narratives it contains may have been in circulation for a long time, but it features the orthodox resolution of the origin of sin, thereby sidelining the logic of Enoch's watchers narrative. Isn't that a sign of major dispute in the time period indicated by MrMacSon's thesis?

Stephan, I think you should work with the possibility a bit more. Our timeline is certainly not fixed. When did the exodus narrative migrate out of Egypt? And is it based on a response to Ptolemaic propaganda against the Jews preserved by Josephus in Contra Apion?
Half of the Book of Daniel? I'd say the whole thing was written after/in response to Antiochus IV's reforms in the 160s. Daniel was probably influenced by Herodotus, as was the Deuteronomistic History. I'd guess a post-400 date for most, if not all, of the Bible. There is a pronounced Greek influence on the Bible.
“The only sensible response to fragmented, slowly but randomly accruing evidence is radical open-mindedness. A single, simple explanation for a historical event is generally a failure of imagination, not a triumph of induction.” William H.C. Propp

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