JEDP refutations

Walter Mattfeld mattfeld at
Mon Dec 13 13:19:47 EST 1999

In regards to Mr. Held's request for further readings on challenges to JEDP
theory (alias: Documentary hypothesis) I would reccomend Joseph Blenkinsopp,
The Pentateuch, An Introduction to the First Five Books of the Bible, Anchor
Bible Reference Library Series, Doubleday, New York, 1992, ISBN
0-385-41207-X, hard bound, $29.00). I would imagine it is available on-line
at ?

Blenkinsopp is a Catholic professor at the University of Notredame school of
Biblical Studies, and he covers  the background history of the evolution of
the JEDP theory, synthesized by Wellhausen in the 1880's; then he discusses
the various scholars of the critical-liberal school, like Perlitt,
Morgenstern, Mendenhall, Winnett, Wagner, Schmid, Rendtorff, Vorlander,
Whybray, Van Seters, Lemche, Thompson, etc. who after world War II, and up
to the the 1970's and 80's, began to publish papers, monographs, and books,
attacking or questioning various assumptions of the JEDP theory.

Blenkinsopp gives full citations and an extensive bibliography, with a brief
synopsis of why each scholar found faults with the JEDP. He also surveys
briefly Jewish scholarship's anti JEDP stance (for instance, Cassuto) and
notes the position of conservative evangelical and Protestant scholars.

Blenkinsopp's observation:

"In addition, and with specific reference to the Pentateuch, the Documentary
construct itself has begun to show enough cracks and strains to place its
survival in doubt." (p.viii)

"Returning to the Pentateuch, it is true that the Documentary hypothesis has
increasingly been showed to be fawed, and will survive, if at all, only in
greatly modified form." (p.28)

All the best,

Walter Reinhold Warttig Mattfeld
Walldorf by Heidelberg
Baden Wurttemburg,

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