[b-hebrew] Was the MT for public consumption?

fred burlingame tensorpath at gmail.com
Fri Dec 24 11:45:33 EST 2010


Hello Bryant:

Thanks for your nice comments.

The issue can be clarified further, by the following inquiry; what exactly
was happening at the nazareth synagogue, saturday morning, december 25, 20
a.d.? (cf., luke 4:16-30 as a general example of the possible type of
synagogue services);

1. Did the synagogue members bring along their individual copies of the
book? Did anyone in nazareth possess a copy other than the synagogue?

2. Did the book consist of more than simply the words of one isaiah?

3. Did the person reading from the book to the congregation, then proceed to
explain what the book passage "really" meant? in another language? in the
same language?

4. Was the book recorded and read to the synangogue members in aramaic? in
hebrew? in greek? the promise of hebrew deliverance from the arameans and
greeks via a greek and aramaic book?

merry christmas

fred burlingame

On Thu, Dec 23, 2010 at 10:36 PM, Bryant J. Williams III <
bjwvmw at com-pair.net> wrote:

> George, Fred, et al,
>
> I think that one of the problems we have is the "definition" of "public" as
> you
> say below. Fred is correct in one sense, the Torah, for that matter the
> Tanakh,
> was written/copied by priests/scribes/rabbis for primary use by the
> priests/scribes/rabbis even when read in the synagogue. You, George, are
> correct
> that use of the text was in the synagogue which is a wider audience. (This
> was
> paralleled in the Church with Latin in the West and Greek in the East being
> limited to scholars, ecclesiastics, etc., from circa 150 AD - 1500 AD). In
> fact,
> the Torah was to be written, copied, read and taught to ALL Israelites by
> the
> Levites including the priests. It was only after the destruction of the
> Second
> Temple that things changed more dramatically. With no priests nor Levites
> it was
> left to the rabbis. Subsequently, it appears, that when the Talmud,
> Mishnah,
> Toseftah, etc., were completed (codification of the Oral Law), then they
> took
> the place of the Tanakh even when the Tanakh was read in the synagogue.
>
> The Dead Sea Scrolls show that the Tanakh was copied (except for Esther)
> numerous times. The sectarian manuscripts also show the importance of the
> written text even within their group. They were not produced for a large
> group.
>
> As to the NT use of the OT quotes/allusions, I always remind myself that it
> is
> the LXX, ca. 250 BC, that was primarily used; although the Tanakh was also
> used
> when necessary. This was because most of the NT was written to
> churches/Godfearers/Gentiles/Jews who attended the weekly meetings in the
> Diaspora. As far as I can tell, the use of the OT in quotes and allusions
> are in
> the gospels and epistles that had a large number of Jewish believers in
> their
> assemblies and in which the Gentile believers were to know and learn about
> also.
> Revelation is a different kettle of fish altogether.
>
> So it is really more of a "both/and" whether than "either/or."
>
> Rev. Bryant J. Williams III
>
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "George Athas" <George.Athas at moore.edu.au>
> To: "B-Hebrew" <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
> Sent: Thursday, December 23, 2010 6:38 PM
> Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Was the MT for public consumption?
>
>
>  > We're obviously using different definitions. By 'public consumption'
> you are
> referring to literate use of a language as a means of communication between
> a
> large number of people. I'm using it to refer to people who are involved in
> hearing or reading it, regardless of whether they are using it in
> day-to-day
> conversation.
> >
> >
> > GEORGE ATHAS
> > Moore Theological College (Sydney, Australia)
> > www.moore.edu.au
> >
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