Harold R. Holmyard III hholmyard at
Sat Sep 2 14:37:50 EDT 2000

Dear Jeremy,

You write:

>    In the introduction of Genesis in The NIV Study  Bible:   During the
>last two centuries some scholars have  claimed to find in the Pentateuch
>four underlying sources.  The presumed  documents, allegedly dating from
>the tenth to the fifth centuries B.C., are  called J (for Jahweh/Yahweh,
>the personal OT name for God), E (for Elohim, a  generic name for God), D
>(for Deuteronomic) and P (for Priestly).  Each of  these documents is
>claimed to have its own characteristics and its own theology,  which often
>contradicts that of the other documents.  The Pentateuch is  thus depicted
>as a patchwork of stories, poems and laws. However, this view is  not
>supported by conclusive evidence, and intensive archaeological and
>literary  research has undercut many of the arguments used to challenge
>Mosaic  authorship.   Whatyathunk?? :-)

My reading in this genre of OT studies has suggested that the whole project
has been more or a blight on OT studies than a blessing. It consumes time
in theoretical constructions, over-complicates OT studies, results in
disagreement among scholars as to what is in J,E,D, P, and perhaps other
documents, and takes people away from the profound implications of the text

				Harold Holmyard

More information about the b-hebrew mailing list