[b-hebrew] Author of the Torah

Dave Washburn dwashbur at nyx.net
Fri Jul 29 17:25:22 EDT 2005

On Friday 29 July 2005 13:37, Heard, Christopher wrote:
> On Jul 29, 2005, at 12:13 PM, Dave Washburn wrote:
> > On Friday 29 July 2005 13:04, Heard, Christopher wrote:
> >> On Jul 29, 2005, at 11:30 AM, Sujata wrote:
> >>> Outside the Torah, it is referred to as Torah Moshe in
> >>> 1 Kings 2:3, Neh 8:1, 2 Chr 25:4, etc.
> >>
> >> What is the evidence to show that these references are to the
> canonical
> >> Torah?
> >
> > What alternative interpretation can you offer?
> Well, the burden of proof ought to be borne by those making the claim.

Get real.  Those who deny Mosaic authorship are the Johnny-come-lately camp; 
said authorship has been accepted since at least the time of Jesus, and most 
likely at least several centuries before.  So you're the one making the "new" 
claim, not I.  Hence, the burden of proof is on you by your own criterion.

> The question "What's your alternative?" is not evidence in favor of the
> claim. It needs to be *demonstrated*, not *assumed*, that references to
> "the law of Moses" in the Former Prophets, Ezra-Nehemiah, and Chronicles
> refer to the canonical Torah. I know of no such demonstration; certainly
> none has even been attempted in the present thread.

Obviously it hasn't in the present thread; however, the weight of previous 
exegesis as well as the testimony of those who were MUCH closer to the time 
in question than we, is quite uniform in asserting that 1) Moses did author 
the Pentateuch, and 2) the references to the Law of Moses in the other books 
do indeed refer to the Pentateuch.  And of course, it also needs to be 
*demonstrated*, not *assumed*, that those references to NOT refer to the 
Pentateuch.  I haven't seen any demonstration of that on this thread, either.  
Bear in mind that arguments from silence always cut both ways.

As for the Josiah thing, that is a fine bit of circular reasoning.  It 
couldn't be the whole Pentateuch, we are told, because chunks of it hadn't 
been written yet.  So it must have only been Deuteronomy, which MAY have been 
written at that time (i.e. fabricated for the specific purpose of Josiah's 
reforms).  But we know that those other chunks hadn't been written yet 
because Josiah's story doesn't refer to them.  Therefore it wasn't the whole 
Pentateuch because those parts hadn't been written yet, which we know because 
they're not referred to, which we know because they hadn't.....

The propensity of modern "scholarship" for this type of approach continues to 
amaze and amuse me..................

Dave Washburn
"Well, if I'd wanted a safe life, I guess I wouldn't have 
married a man who studies rocks." - Betty Armstrong (Fay Masterson)

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