DSS personalities & historical persons

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neilgodfrey
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by neilgodfrey » Fri Feb 17, 2017 2:19 pm

John T wrote: I maintain and will continue to cite evidence that "The Teacher of Righteousness" was a title for the leader of the Qumran community, i.e. Essenes and transferred to the next in line.
Good for you, John T. And if anyone attempts to discuss the interpretation of that evidence from a different perspective then you put them in their place with a nice hard kick in the derriere. :banghead:

John2
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by John2 » Fri Feb 17, 2017 2:57 pm

Following the reference to the Wicked Priest "swallowing" the Teacher of Righteousness and his followers, the Habakkuk Pesher goes on to interpret another verse that mentions blood and violence (Hab. 2:17) and ties it to the Wicked Priest and his destruction of the poor (one of the self-designations the DSS use to describe the community) and his consequent "reward" for it:
For the violence done to Lebanon shall overwhelm you, and the destruction of the beasts] shall terrify you, because of the blood of men and the violence done to the land, the city, and all its inhabitants.

Interpreted, this saying concerns the Wicked Priest, inasmuch as he shall be paid the reward which he himself tendered to the poor. For Lebanon is the Council of the Community; and the beasts are the Simple of Judah who keep the Law. As he himself plotted the destruction of the poor, so will God condemn him to destruction. And as for that which He said, Because of the blood of the city and the violence done to the land: interpreted, the city is Jerusalem: where the Wicked Priest committed abominable deeds and defiled the Temple of God. The violence done to the land: these are the cities of Judah where he robbed the poor of their possessions.


This points to the Wicked Priest executing the Teacher of Righteousness after a trial (like in the Psalms Pesher) because it says that Jerusalem is "where the Wicked Priest committed abominable deeds and defiled the Temple of God."

Eisenman suggests that this trial is also alluded to (pejoratively) in the 1QpHab col. 11 passage:
Interpreted, this concerns the Wicked Priest who pursued the Teacher of Righteousness to the house of his exile that he might confuse [or "swallow"] him with his venomous fury.


It is not clear whose "house" this refers to, because it only says "his exiled house" or "house of his exile" (beit galuto), and this could refer to a house that belongs to the Wicked Priest or the Teacher of Righteousness. But Eisenman points out that the Talmud says that the Sanhedrin (beit din or "house of judgment") was in "exile" from the Temple from 30 to 70 CE:
Forty years before the Temple was destroyed did the Sanhedrin abandon [the Temple] and held its sittings in Hanuth. (AZ 8b)
Forty years before the destruction of the Temple the Sanhedrin went into exile and took its seat in the Trade Halls. (Shab. 15a)
This would make the "exiled house" in 1QpHab belong to the Wicked Priest, like in Lk. 22:54 ("Then seizing him, they led him away and took him into the house of the high priest"), which according to the Talmud was in exile from the Temple in the first century CE and fits the setting of Jerusalem ("where the Wicked Priest committed abominable deeds").
Now the die is shaken, now the die must fall, there ain't a winner in the game, he don't go home with all.

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John T
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by John T » Fri Feb 17, 2017 4:52 pm

neilgodfrey wrote:
John T wrote: I maintain and will continue to cite evidence that "The Teacher of Righteousness" was a title for the leader of the Qumran community, i.e. Essenes and transferred to the next in line.
Good for you, John T. And if anyone attempts to discuss the interpretation of that evidence from a different perspective then you put them in their place with a nice hard kick in the derriere. :banghead:
Ah, but you error.

I am an objective man of science and logic. I eagerly engage in different perspectives if they are based on that criteria.
A good sign of a wise man is they do not mock the ignorant (kick them in the derriere) but instead try to reason with them to make a better argument before terminating the dialogue if they refuse to comprehend.

Make a consistent cogent argument and I will not kick you in the derriere but kiss it. ;)

Let us reason together without vanity and/or ad hominem attacks.

So, have you already determined without a doubt the real identity of, "The Teacher of Righteousness"?

If so, I am all ears.
Please proceed. :popcorn:
"It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into."...Jonathan Swift

John2
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by John2 » Fri Feb 17, 2017 5:24 pm

maryhelena wrote:
However, unless these interpretations seek to understand the DSS in it's own time and place i.e. the historical situation that prevailed up to the end of the Hasmonean dynasty - one is simply blowing in the wind...Interpretations, to have value, need to show relevance to a political situation.
But Doudna is willing to date the DSS in question (the pesharim and the Damascus Document) as late as 4 BCE, the year that Herod died, to accommodate the DSS prohibition against niece marriage. The problem with that, in my view, is that this prohibition is directed against more than one king, i.e., "kings of the peoples" and "daubers of the wall."

As the Damascus Document puts it:
During all those years Satan shall be unleashed against Israel, as He spoke by the hand of Isaiah, son of Amoz, ' saying, Terror and the pit and the snare are upon you, 0 inhabitant of the land. Interpreted, these are the three nets of Satan with which Levi son of Jacob said that he catches Israel by setting them up as three kinds of righteousness. The first is riches, the second is fornication, and the third is profanation of the Temple. Whoever escapes the first is caught in the second, and whoever saves himself from the second is caught in the third.

The builders of the wall [Ezek. 13:10] ... shall be caught in fornication twice by taking a second wife while the first is alive, whereas the principle of creation is, Male and female created He them. Also, those who entered the Ark went in two by two. And concerning the prince it is written, He shall not multiply wives to himself ... Moreover, they profane the Temple because they do not observe the distinction (between clean and unclean) in accordance with the Law, but lie with a woman who sees her bloody discharge.

And each man marries the daughter of his brother or sister, whereas Moses said, You shall not approach your mother's sister; she is your mother's near kin. But although the laws against incest are written for men, they also apply to women. When, therefore, a brother's daughter uncovers the nakedness of her father's brother, she is (also his) near kin.
These "daubers of the wall" are referred to again and called "the kings of the peoples" and "kings of Greece" and likened to serpents:
The serpents are the kings of the peoples and their wine is their ways. And the head of asps is the chief of the kings of Greece who came to wreak vengeance upon them. But all these things the builders of the wall and those who daub it with plaster have not understood ... He hated the builders of the wall and His anger was kindled against them and against all those who followed them.
So there was more than one king/prince/dauber/builder of the wall who was rich, fornicated, polluted the Temple and practiced niece marriage, and it goes against Doudna's comment on Neil's blog that, "The fact that first century CE Herodians continued to practice niece marriage would be true but irrelevant."

Additionally, these daubers/kings ("and those who followed them," who are elsewhere called "seekers of smooth things" who are commonly seen as being the Pharisees, as does Doudna), who "He hated ... and His anger was kindled against them and against all those who followed them," are likened to vipers eggs:
Furthermore, they defile their holy spirit and open their mouth with a blaspheming tongue against the laws of the Covenant of God saying, ' They are not sure.' They speak abominations concerning them; they are all kindlers of fire and lighters of brands, their webs are spiders' webs and their eggs are vipers' eggs. No man that approaches them shall be free from guilt; the more he does so, the guiltier shall he be, unless he is pressed.


And this is similar to pronouncements against the Pharisees in the NT (who are said to be in league with Herodians in Mk. 3:6, 12:13 and Mt. 22:16):
But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. (Mt. 3:7-10)

You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? (Mt. 12:34)
You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to hell? (Mt. 23:33)
Now the die is shaken, now the die must fall, there ain't a winner in the game, he don't go home with all.

John2
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by John2 » Fri Feb 17, 2017 8:36 pm

Charlesworth also notes this "viper" similarity:
...Luke and Matthew recorded that the Baptizer called the multitudes -many among them Pharisees and Sadducees, according to Matthew- a "brood of vipers" (Luke 3:7 = Matt 3:7). Did he make up this term, or did he inherit it from some tradition? Because of its uniqueness in Second Temple Judaism, it is likely that he learned it from the Qumranites. They also talked about their adversaries, especially the Pharisees and Sadducees, as those born of a viper (or asp).

https://books.google.com/books?id=TmVYV ... ls&f=false
Now the die is shaken, now the die must fall, there ain't a winner in the game, he don't go home with all.

John2
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by John2 » Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:20 pm

I've been wondering if the reference to the "builders of the wall" in the Damascus Document could be another attack against the Pharisees (like the possible wordplay of seekers of "smooth things" or halaqot, as VanderKam notes: https://books.google.com/books?id=i2i5h ... ot&f=false), in this case as a reference to the "fence" that the Pharisees put around the Torah, and I see that Moyise and Charlesworth suspect this as well (in note 32).
The 'wall' may be a reference to the 'fence' which the Pharisees put around the law (m. Abot 1:1) ... Charlesworth suggests that the similar phrase at CD 8.12 may also refer to the Pharisees ...

https://books.google.com/books?id=tdHeB ... es&f=false
Last edited by John2 on Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:34 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Now the die is shaken, now the die must fall, there ain't a winner in the game, he don't go home with all.

John2
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by John2 » Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:30 pm

Schiffman appears to see it this way too:
Although talmudic sources consider this “fence” (siyyag in mishnaic Hebrew) a positive feature of rabbinic halakhah, the authors of the Zadokite Fragments oppose this approach, not only because they disagreed with the specific laws that resulted but also because they did not accept expanding the law in this manner in the first place ...

To the sectarians, the Pharisaic polemic was not only fierce, but worse—an abomination.

We find another mention of the Pharisees’ lack of understanding, here again referring to them as “builders of the wall,” later in the Zadokite Fragments ...

http://cojs.org/pharisees_and_sadducees ... hia-_1994/
Now the die is shaken, now the die must fall, there ain't a winner in the game, he don't go home with all.

maryhelena
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by maryhelena » Sat Feb 18, 2017 12:56 am

John2 wrote:maryhelena wrote:
However, unless these interpretations seek to understand the DSS in it's own time and place i.e. the historical situation that prevailed up to the end of the Hasmonean dynasty - one is simply blowing in the wind...Interpretations, to have value, need to show relevance to a political situation.
But Doudna is willing to date the DSS in question (the pesharim and the Damascus Document) as late as 4 BCE, the year that Herod died, to accommodate the DSS prohibition against niece marriage. The problem with that, in my view, is that this prohibition is directed against more than one king, i.e., "kings of the peoples" and "daubers of the wall."
Unlike Greg Doudna, I don't see the need to view the DSS prohibition against niece marriage as possibly having Herod and his descendants as it's focus. Particularly so as re Josephus, the internal strife between the Hasmoneans would suggest that it would be there that the DSS writers would be focusing. Thus, the question that should be asked is what situation occurred that motivated the DSS writers to re-interpret, widen, the Leviticus admonition to include uncle niece marriage. In other words, what impact would an uncle niece marriage have upon their community?

If re Josephus, the internal strife between the two Hasmonean families was central to the downfall of their dynasty. If re Doudna, that internal strife was central to the DSS and it's conflict, strife, between it's Teacher of Righteousness and the Wicked Priest - then it is within these two families that uncle niece marriage became an issue.

A possible scenario could be that the younger generation, the children of Hyrancus and Aristobulus sought to end this strife - and did so first by a cousin to cousin marriage and later an uncle to niece marriage. What this would seek to achieve would be to end the internal strife. Thus, a win-win solution to Hasmonean family strife instead of the progression to a situation that could only lead to disaster. Rather than go with this logical solution the writers of the DSS sought to bring about a prohibition against uncle niece marriage - thus ensuring that tragedy would ensue.

Yes, of course, the big question here is whether Antigonus did marry his niece, his dead brother's daughter. Was the daughter of Alexander of Judaea a widow when Herod married her? Big questions.....maybe ninety nine dollar questions but questions that should be entertained due to the DSS and it's polemic stance against uncle niece marriage...(answers that could well allow the DSS to retain it's 1st century b.c.e. Hasmonean context...)


As the Damascus Document puts it:
During all those years Satan shall be unleashed against Israel, as He spoke by the hand of Isaiah, son of Amoz, ' saying, Terror and the pit and the snare are upon you, 0 inhabitant of the land. Interpreted, these are the three nets of Satan with which Levi son of Jacob said that he catches Israel by setting them up as three kinds of righteousness. The first is riches, the second is fornication, and the third is profanation of the Temple. Whoever escapes the first is caught in the second, and whoever saves himself from the second is caught in the third.

The builders of the wall [Ezek. 13:10] ... shall be caught in fornication twice by taking a second wife while the first is alive, whereas the principle of creation is, Male and female created He them. Also, those who entered the Ark went in two by two. And concerning the prince it is written, He shall not multiply wives to himself ... Moreover, they profane the Temple because they do not observe the distinction (between clean and unclean) in accordance with the Law, but lie with a woman who sees her bloody discharge.

And each man marries the daughter of his brother or sister, whereas Moses said, You shall not approach your mother's sister; she is your mother's near kin. But although the laws against incest are written for men, they also apply to women. When, therefore, a brother's daughter uncovers the nakedness of her father's brother, she is (also his) near kin.
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
W.B. Yeats

neilgodfrey
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by neilgodfrey » Sat Feb 18, 2017 7:29 pm

John T wrote:
neilgodfrey wrote:
John T wrote: I maintain and will continue to cite evidence that "The Teacher of Righteousness" was a title for the leader of the Qumran community, i.e. Essenes and transferred to the next in line.
Good for you, John T. And if anyone attempts to discuss the interpretation of that evidence from a different perspective then you put them in their place with a nice hard kick in the derriere. :banghead:
Ah, but you error.

I am an objective man of science and logic. I eagerly engage in different perspectives if they are based on that criteria.
A good sign of a wise man is they do not mock the ignorant (kick them in the derriere) but instead try to reason with them to make a better argument before terminating the dialogue if they refuse to comprehend.

Make a consistent cogent argument and I will not kick you in the derriere but kiss it. ;)

Let us reason together without vanity and/or ad hominem attacks.

So, have you already determined without a doubt the real identity of, "The Teacher of Righteousness"?

If so, I am all ears.
Please proceed. :popcorn:
Are you that same guy on some other forum who interpreted every disagreement and attempt to introduce an alternative point of view as a personal attack?

(Since you evidently confuse popcorn with humility and sound method in historical research I can now understand why you resort to insult and personal attack in forums like these.)

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John T
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Re: DSS personalities & historical persons

Post by John T » Tue Mar 07, 2017 11:50 am

Thanks everyone for providing the links.

I spent many enjoyable hours searching the articles on this thread while learning about past controversial theories as to: Who were the Wicked Priest and the Teacher of Righteousness?

I especially want to thank DCHindley for providing a link containing the OCR of Roth's book.

I skimmed over Roth's book looking for his explanation as to why the scholars of his time did not give his Zealot theory much credence. Roth explained that since his theory was based purely on historical reasoning it received, ‘almost universal derision’ as being ‘wholly fantastic’.

Rightly so, because Roth was dismissive of the paleographical and archaeological evidence available at the time of his publication. Paleography (study of ancient writing) was developed enough by then to ascribe dates for the DSS to within 25 years. Yet, Roth claimed paleographical evidence was inconclusive due to a lack of Hebrew script of the era to make any comparison. Roth also question the validity of archaeological evidence found at Qumran because Roland de Vaux miss-dated a Roman coin found at Qumran.

What I searched for the most and could not find was, Roth's/Driver's take on the C14 testing results. Although C14 testing was relatively new, Dr. Libby had already tested (1950) a piece of linen cloth from Cave 1 and suggested a date of around 33 CE.

I now better understand and agree with Geza Vermes that, “The Zealot theory, elaborated in the 1950s in Oxford by Sir Godfrey Driver and Cecil Roth, is hard to reconcile with the totality of the available evidence, as most of the Qumran documents predate the Zealot period.”…The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English, pg. 19.

Still, I give Roth much kudos for his attempt to sleuth the identity of the Teacher of Righteousness based solely on historical references alone. :D
"It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into."...Jonathan Swift

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