[b-hebrew] Language, migration and Jewish identity

ג'ייסון הייר jaihare at gmail.com
Sat Nov 3 04:48:37 EDT 2007


Karl:

Thanks for your your response. However, I'm also hoping to get the
bibliographical data for writings on both sides of the fence. I'm in the
middle of an *annoying* debate (one in which my opponent is one of those who
likes to throw out things that are debatable as if they are absolute and
then say "prove me wrong!"). So, I am hoping for resources on both sides.
Why do we allow ourselves to get into these situations? ;)

Yours,
Jason

On 11/3/07, K Randolph <kwrandolph at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Jason:
>
> The answer to that is: when was the Pentateuch written and who wrote it?
>
> For those who take the modernist approach, that Torah was written
> mostly post-Exile by a group of people with an editor putting it all
> together, then there is no evidence either way, and it could be that
> Israel adopted Hebrew after the Exodus.
>
> If, on the other hand, those of us in the traditionalist camp are
> right, that Moses wrote it about the 15th century BC, then we have to
> deal with the conservatism that writing imposes on language. Then the
> picture is that Hebrew was the language that Israel had before the
> Exodus and for unknown time before it.
>
> I hope this helps.
>
> Karl W. Randolph,
>
> On 11/2/07, ג'ייסון הייר <jaihare at gmail.com> wrote:
> > B-Hebrew Chaverim,
> >
> > I have been in a forum debate somewhere on the 'Net recently about the
> > *when* of the adoption of Hebrew. I personally think that Abraham and
> Sarah
> > adopted/acquired Hebrew when they migrated from Mesopotamia, and that
> their
> > children grew up in Canaan with the language. Thus, they carried with
> them
> > to Goshen (assuming the story of the biblical narrative at least true in
> the
> > generalities), continuing their faith in the one God (as Abraham had
> > instructed his family) until the time of the Exodus. Thus, it was
> natural
> > that the Torah would be composed in Hebrew in its original kernel (given
> > that many here do not think that the Torah was nearly all composed by
> the
> > hand of Moshe Rabbeinu).
> >
> > The position of my "friend" on the other forum is that the Israelites
> > adopted Hebrew only *after* the Exodus. I'm curious to know if there is
> > anyone who makes a good point of this in the scholarly community, and
> also
> > if there has been an opposing argument put forward.
> >
> > תודה רבה לכם
> > Jason Hare
> > English Teacher
> > Rishon LeZion
> > Israel
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