[b-hebrew] Genesis 41: 1: "Two Years of Days"

James Read J.Read-2 at sms.ed.ac.uk
Wed Jul 15 19:37:45 EDT 2009

Hi Jim,

I've read the Torah quite a few times now but haven't, to this date,  
seen any mention of a Bar Mitzvah or an age at which it should happen.  
Have you considered the possibility that you may be overinterpretting  
things that were written in the Talmud less than 2000 years ago and  
applying them to things that happened thousands of years earlier?

You would have a stronger argument if you were to say that a boy  
enters manhood on the eight day (the day of his circumcision and  
therefore entering into the Abrahamic covenant). You would then, at  
least, have some kind of grounding in the Torah. As it stands, your  
argument is pretty poor.

James Christian

Quoting JimStinehart at aol.com:

> James Christian:
> You seem not to know what a Bar Mitzvah is.  Here are a few quotes about
> Bar Mitzvah from the Judaism 101 website:
> “Technically, the term refers to the child who is coming of age…  At the
> age of 13 (12 for girls), children become obligated to observe the
> commandments. The bar mitzvah ceremony formally marks the assumption of that
> obligation, along with the corresponding right to take part in   
> leading religious
> services, to count in a minyan (the minimum number of people needed   
> to perform
> certain parts of religious services), to form binding contracts, to testify
> before religious courts and to marry. … Is 13 an Adult?  Many people mock the
> idea that a 12 or 13 year old child is an adult, claiming that it is an
> outdated notion based on the needs of an agricultural society. This criticism
> comes from a misunderstanding of the significance of becoming a bar   
> mitzvah. …
>  Bar mitzvah is simply the age when a person is held responsible for his
> actions and minimally qualified to marry.”
> _http://www.jewfaq.org/barmitz.htm_ (http://www.jewfaq.org/barmitz.htm)
> The medieval concept of a Bar Mitzvah was based on the notion that at age
> 13, a male was an adult, who could take on adult responsibilities regarding
> religious observances.  If anything, males in the ancient world may well have
> been considered adults at an earlier age.
> The fact that a male was an adult in the ancient world at age 13 years does
> not mean that a 13-year-old male should view that as the ideal time to
> marry and start earning his own livelihood.  The above website notes that the
> Talmud sees older ages as being the ideal ages for marrying, and for  
>  earning a
> livelihood.  But the Talmud recognizes that age 13 is the proper age for
> fulfillment of the Commandments.  That’s because a male entered into  
>  adulthood
> at age 13 in the ancient world, and was no longer a “boy”, no longer being
> a child.
> It is inconceivable that if Joseph were age 17 “years”, in 12-month years,
> that the narrator at Genesis 37: 2 would refer to beloved, important Joseph
> as being a nar/N(R/“boy”.  A male age 17 years in 12-month years was an
> adult in the ancient world.
> Jim Stinehart
> Evanston, Illinois
> **************Can love help you live longer? Find out now.
> (http://personals.aol.com/articles/2009/02/18/longer-lives-through-relationships/?ncid=emlweu
> slove00000001)

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