The Law: The First Five Books
The first five books of the Bible are sometimes called the Pentateuch which means five books. They are also known as the books of the law because they contain the laws and instruction given by the Lord through Moses to the people of Israel. These books were written by Moses, except for the last portion of Deuteronomy because it tells about the death of Moses. These five books lay the foundation for the coming of Christ in that here God chooses and brings into being the nation of Israel. As Gods chosen people, Israel became the custodians of the Old Testament, the recipients of the covenants of promise, and the channel of Messiah .
Who Wrote The Bible
Until the 17th century, received opinion had it that the first five books of the Bible Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy were the work of one author: Moses. That theory has since been seriously challenged.
Scholars now believe that the stories that would become the Bible were disseminated by word of mouth across the centuries, in the form of oral tales and poetry perhaps as a means of forging a collective identity among the tribes of Israel. Eventually, these stories were collated and written down. The question is by whom, and when?
A clue may lie in a limestone boulder discovered embedded in a stone wall in the town of Tel Zayit, 35 miles southwest of Jerusalem, in 2005. The boulder, now known as the Zayit Stone, contains what many historians believe to be the earliest full Hebrew alphabet ever discovered, dating to around 1000 BC. What was found was not a random scratching of two or three letters, it was the full alphabet, Kyle McCarter of Johns Hopkins University in Maryland has said of the stone. Everything about it says this is the ancestor of the Hebrew script.
Ask the expert: John Barton
John Barton is a former professor of holy scriptures at the University of Oxford and the author of A History of the Bible: The Books and Its Faiths.
Q:Just how reliable is the Old Testament as an historical document?
Q:How much does archaeology support the historicity of the Old Testament?
Who Wrote The Most Books In The Bible New Testament
The Pauline letters are the thirteen New Testament books that present Paul the Apostle as their author. Pauls authorship of six of the letters is disputed. Four are thought by most modern scholars to be pseudepigraphic, i.e., not actually written by Paul even if attributed to him within the letters themselves.
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What Does The Bible Itself Say About Authorship Of The Pentateuch
There are about two dozen verses in the Hebrew Scriptures and one dozen in theChristian Scriptures which state or strongly imply that Moses was the author. Consider thefollowing passages from the New Living Translation :
- Passages in the Pentateuch itself:
- Exodus 17:14“Then the Lord instructed Moses, ‘Write this downas a permanent record…‘”
- Exodus 24:4“Then Moses carefully wrote down all the Lord’sinstructions.”
- Exodus 34:27“And the Lord said to Moses, ‘Write down allthese instructions, for they represents the terms of my covenant with you and with Israel.‘”
- Leviticus 1:1“The Lord called to Moses from the Tabernacleand said to him, ‘Give the following instructions to the Israelites…‘”
- Leviticus 6:8“Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘Give Aaron andhis sons the following instructions…‘”
- Deuteronomy 31:9“So Moses wrote down this law and gave it tothe priests.”
- Deuteronomy 31:24-26“When Moses had finished writing downthis entire body of law in a book…“
Who Wrote The Bible: The First Five Books
Wikimedia CommonsMoses, as painted by Rembrandt.
According to both Jewish and Christian Dogma, the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy were all written by Moses in about 1,300 B.C. There are a few issues with this, however, such as the lack of evidence that Moses ever existed and the fact that the end of Deuteronomy describes the author dying and being buried.
Scholars have developed their own take on who wrote the Bibles first five books, mainly by using internal clues and writing style. Just as English speakers can roughly date a book that uses a lot of thees and thous, Bible scholars can contrast the styles of these early books to create profiles of the different authors.
In each case, these writers are talked about as if they were a single person, but each author could just as easily be an entire school of people writing in a single style. These biblical authors include:
Wikimedia CommonsA depiction of the destruction of Jerusalem under Babylonian rule.
Wikimedia CommonsKing Josiah
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The Department Of Redundancy Department
If the divine names are not a sure guide to what source is being used, what about the apparent duplications of events, such as Abraham passing Sarah off as his sister to foreign rulers or Isaac doing the same thing with Rebecca ?
Does this indicate different sources containing the same basic story that got stitched together, creating the duplications?
Not necessarily. It can also that the author means us to understand this as a family tactica kind of scamthat the Patriarchs used to get out of tough situations.
There is evidence for this in the Hebrew text of Genesis 20:2, which is normally translated And Abraham said of Sarah his wife, She is my sister.
Contemporary Jewish scholar Gary Rendsburg points out, however, that what it says in Hebrew is not that he said this of Sarah his wife but to Sarah his wife .
Abraham and Sarah have already done this once before, and now the text asks us to envision Abraham turning to Sarah and saying to her, She is my sistercueing her to what his plan is. We can see her thinking, Oh, were going to do that one again.
Since the ruse worked twice for Abraham, its not surprising to find his son, Isaac, using it in a similar situation.
And there is another reason why the duplications do not indicate multiple sources.
Does It Matter If Jesus Really Did And Said What Is In The Gospels
Yes. For faith to really be of any value, it must be based on facts, on reality. Here is why. If you were taking a flight to London, you would probably have faith that the jet is fueled and mechanically reliable, the pilot trained, and no terrorists on board. Your faith, however, is not what gets you to London. Your faith is useful in that it got you on the plane. But what actually gets you to London is the integrity of the plane, pilot, etc. You could rely on your positive experience of past flights. But your positive experience would not be enough to get that plane to London. What matters is the object of your faith — is it reliable?
Is the New Testament an accurate, reliable presentation of Jesus? Yes. We can trust the New Testament because there is enormous factual support for it. This article touched on the following points: historians concur, archaeology concurs, the four Gospel biographies are in agreement, the preservation of document copies is remarkable, there is superior accuracy in the translations. All of this gives a solid foundation for believing that what we read today is what the original writers wrote and experienced in real life, in real places.
John, one of the writers sums it up well, “Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”12
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The Changing Fortunes Of Jedp
After the documentary hypothesis was proposed, it quickly gained ground, particularly among Protestant Bible scholars.
Matters were different in Catholic circles. In 1906 the Pontifical Biblical Commission issued a ruling that the arguments then being proposed were insufficient to justify the statement that these books do not have Moses as their author but were compiled from sources for the most part posterior to the time of Moses .
Matters changed over the course of the twentieth century, and in a 2005 speech Cardinal William Levada, then president of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, said that the early decisions of the PBC are now viewed as transitory judgments .
Long before this, the documentary hypothesis found increasing approval in Catholic circles, including on the magisterial level, with John Paul II explicitly referring the proposed sources and datings .
What Happens In Genesis
Its, of course, difficult to summarize all the events that happen in Genesis. After all, the book takes up 50 whole chapters in the Bible, so well briefly summarize some of the major events that take place in the book.
Genesis follows humanity through creation and humanitys descent into sin . From there, we have the well-known story of the Great Flood, and the birth of the Israelite nation through Abraham.
We follow Abrahams generations through Joseph and how Israel ended up in Egypt due to a massive famine.
From there, and after hundreds of years of slavery, we pick up the story in Exodus.
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The Authorship Of The Remainder Of The New Testament
Outside of the Gospel and the Pauline Epistles are three sections of the New Testament: History, General Epistles, and Prophecy.
“History” here refers to the book of Acts, which describes the activities of Jesus’ disciples to include much of the narrative about Paul in the decades immediately after his death. According to Christian publisher Zondervan, the author claims to be Luke, the same man as the purported author of the Gospel bearing his name. It was likely written by the same man.
The term General Epistles, put simply, refers to epistles not written by Paul. According to Religious Tolerance, those books, purportedly written by Jesus’ disciples, such as Peter and James, were almost certainly compiled or written by others, in some cases decades or even centuries after their named writers’ deaths.
The New Testament’s one book of prophecy is Revelation. Tradition holds that it was written by Jesus’ disciple, John, the author of a Gospel and other New Testament books bearing his name, according to Cross Examined. However, according to PBS, it was likely written by a Christian who lived much later, quite possibly the 1st-century equivalent of a circuit preacher, who went by the name of John.
Moses Gave The Book Of The Law To The Priests:
NASB, Deuteronomy 31:9 – So Moses wrote this law and gave it to the priests, the sons of Levi who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord, and to all the elders of Israel.
Deuteronomy 31:26-27 – Take this book of the law, and place it beside the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, that it may remain there as a witness against you. 27 For I know your rebellion and your stubbornness behold, while I am still alive with you today, you have been rebellious against the Lord
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Moses: The First Five Books Of The Old Testament
try and discover who is responsible for the writing of the Bible. Many critics, biblical scholars, and later writers have argued and have tried to disprove the Bibles authenticity and reliability. The story has been that Moses was considered the authorship of the first five books of the Old Testament. But throughout the research done many have come to a conclusion that Moses did not write the first five books of the Old Testament in fact it is claimed that at least four authors are responsible for
What Are The 7 Books Of Moses
The Seventh Book of Moses
- The First Table of the Spirits of the Air
- The Second Table of the Spirits of Fire
- The Third Table of the Spirits of Water
- The Fourth Table of the Spirits of the Earth
- The Fifth Table of Saturn
- The Sixth Table of Jupiter
- The Seventh Table of Mars
- The Eighth Table of the Sun
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Mosaic Authorship In Rabbinic Tradition To The Modern Period
The Babylonian Talmud, an encyclopedia of Jewish scholarship composed between 200 and 500 CE, states that “Moses wrote his own book and the section concerning Balaam.” The medieval sage Maimonides enshrined this in his Thirteen Principles of Faith , the 8th of which states: “I believe with perfect faith that the entire Torah presently in our possession is the one given to Moses.” The rabbis explained that God wrote the Torah in heaven before the world was created, in letters of black fire on parchment of white fire, and that Moses received it by divine dictation, writing the exact words spoken to him by God. The rabbis also explained how the Torah was handed down to later generations: “Moses received the Torah from Sinai and transmitted it to Joshua, Joshua to the Elders, the Elders to the Prophets, and the Prophets transmitted it to the men of the Great Assembly,” who in turn transmitted it to the rabbis. .Orthodox rabbis therefore say that thanks to this chain of custodians the Torah of today is identical with that received by Moses, not varying by a single letter.
Mosaic Authorship Controversy: Who Really Wrote The First Five Books Of The Bible
Who wrote the first five books of the Bible? Was it Moses or wasit others centuries later? If Moses wrote the first five books ofthe Bible, then how was his own death and burial written inDeuteronomy Chapter 34? Many mainstream Bible scholars argue thatMoses could not have written the Pentateuch since he likely existedmany centuries earlier than the development of the Hebrew language.When was the origin of the Hebrew language? Popular scholarshipsays that if Moses had written the Pentateuch, he would havewritten in the Egyptian language, not the Hebrew. Moreover, most ofthe Israelites and other people of the sixteenth century B.C.E.were illiterate, so who could have written the Torah, and for whomwould it be written because the people of that period did notread?
Finally, analysis of the first five books demonstrates multipleauthors, not just one, which explains the many discrepancies.Multiple authors also explain the many cases of telling of the samestory twice, making the same events appear to happen more thanonce. The modern mainstream scholarship would argue that within thePentateuch we see such things as preferences for certain words,differences in vocabulary, reoccurring expressions in Deuteronomythat are not found in Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers, allevidence for their case for multiple authors.
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Biblical Contributions Of Biblical Scholarship
scholarship has debunked established beliefs on the origin and authorship of the Bible. Previously, the Bible was believed to be historically accurate and a single work however, this theory was disproved by the nineteenth century. Exploration into the Bible through archaeology and close examination of biblical texts led scholars to conclude that the Bible is a composition of various works composed and written by a multitude of authors over centuries. The basic foundations of this theory, developed by influential
Favorite Verses In Genesis
Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
Genesis 1:27 So God created human beings in his own image, in the image of God he created them male and female he created them.
Genesis 1:31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning the sixth day.
Genesis 12:3 I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.
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Want To Read More About The History Of The Bible Take A Look:
Article by David Peach
David Peach has been in full time missions work with the Deaf since 1994. He has started several deaf ministries in various countries and established a deaf church in Mexico. David now works as Director of Deaf Ministries for his mission board.
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Well done sir!Recently, I think its already been 2 months that I and my friend also make a list of the books in the bible. We make in to columns of 4. We named each columns, 1st Book, 2nd Name of Authors, 3rd Approximate Covered Years the book was written and the last 4th columns is for the Category My friend asked me this for his School of Leaders training in their church and it is useful for us. I will review my lists and make a revision if I have missed ones in my lists. Thank you sir this wonderful lists.
- HATEGEKIMANA DANIEL
Could you please share with me that table that you elaborated , it will be much valuable to me?
Sir David,Just want to ask if what is the appropriate to say for Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. In our lists we categorized it as History. In your list you say its a GOSPEL. I beleive that I have so much learn from you sir. Thanks! in Christ, Joel