The Mishna, etc

Discussion about the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint, pseudepigrapha, Philo, Josephus, Talmud, Dead Sea Scrolls, archaeology, etc.
User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 5397
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by MrMacSon » Thu Nov 23, 2017 3:01 am

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rabbinic_literature

The Midrash

Midrash (pl. Midrashim) is a Hebrew word referring to a method of reading details into, or out of, a biblical text. The term midrash also can refer to a compilation of Midrashic teachings, in the form of legal, exegetical, homiletical, or narrative writing, often configured as a commentary on the Bible or Mishnah. There are a large number of "classical" Midrashic works spanning a period from Mishnaic to Geonic times, often showing evidence of having been worked and reworked from earlier materials, and frequently coming to us in multiple variants.

Exegetical Tannaitic period (till 200 CE)
  • Mekhilta of Rabbi Ishmael
  • Mekhilta of Rabbi Shimon
    • a Halakic midrash on Exodus from the school of Rabbi Akiva, the "Rabbi Shimon" in question being Shimon bar Yochai.
  • Mekilta le-Sefer Devarim (n.e.)
  • Sifra
  • Sifre

Narrative
  • Seder Olam Rabbah

    The work is a chronological record, extending from Adam to the revolt of Bar Kokba in the reign of Hadrian, the Persian period being compressed into 52 years (Strack 1991). The chronicle is complete only up to the time of Alexander the Great; the period from Alexander to Hadrian occupies a very small portion of the work —the end of the 30th chapter [the last chapter].

    It has been concluded, therefore, that originally the Seder Olam was more extensive and consisted of two parts, the second of which, dealing with the post-Alexandrian period, has been lost, with the exception of a small fragment that was added by the copyists to the first part.

    Many passages quoted in the Talmud are missing in the edition of the Seder Olam which has survived.

User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 5397
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by MrMacSon » Thu Nov 23, 2017 8:46 pm


Ketuvim Ketuvim (כְּתוּבִים, "Writings") consists of eleven books, described below.

Poetic books
In masoretic manuscripts (and some printed editions), Psalms, Proverbs and Job are presented in a special two-column form emphasizing the parallel stichs in the verses, which are a function of their poetry. Collectively, these three books are known as Sifrei Emet (an acronym of the titles in Hebrew, איוב, משלי, תהלים yields Emet אמ"ת, which is also the Hebrew for "truth").

These three books are also the only ones in Tanakh with a special system of cantillation notes that are designed to emphasize parallel stichs within verses. However, the beginning and end of the book of Job are in the normal prose system.

Five scrolls (Hamesh Megillot)
The five relatively short books of the Song of Songs, the Book of Ruth, the Book of Lamentations, Ecclesiastes and the Book of Esther are collectively known as the Hamesh Megillot (Five Megillot). These are the latest books collected and designated as "authoritative" in the Jewish canon, with the latest parts having dates ranging into the 2nd century BCE. These scrolls are traditionally read over the course of the year in many Jewish communities. The list below presents them in the order they are read in the synagogue on holidays, beginning with the Song of Solomon at Passover.

Other books
Besides the three poetic books and the five scrolls, the remaining books in Ketuvim are Daniel, Ezra–Nehemiah and Chronicles. Although there is no formal grouping for these books in the Jewish tradition, they nevertheless share a number of distinguishing characteristics.
  • Their narratives all openly describe relatively late events (i.e. the Babylonian captivity and the subsequent restoration of Zion).
  • The Talmudic tradition ascribes late authorship to all of them.
  • Two of them (Daniel and Ezra) are the only books in Tanakh with significant portions in Aramaic.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tanakh#Ketuvim

User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 5397
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by MrMacSon » Sun Dec 10, 2017 11:53 am

Christian mysticism

Greco-Judean influences

Jewish antecedents
Jewish spirituality in the period before Jesus was highly corporate and public, based mostly on the worship services of the synagogues, which included the reading and interpretation of the Hebrew Scriptures and the recitation of prayers, and on the major festivals. Thus, private spirituality was strongly influenced by the liturgies and by the scriptures (e.g., the use of the Psalms for prayer), and individual prayers often recalled historical events just as much as they recalled their own immediate needs.[11]

Of special importance are the following concepts:[12]
  • Da'at (knowledge) and Chokhmah (wisdom), which come from years of reading, praying and meditating the scriptures;
  • Shekhinah, the presence of God in our daily lives, the superiority of that presence to earthly wealth, and the pain and longing that come when God is absent;
  • the 'hiddenness of God', which comes from 'our inability to survive the full revelation of God's glory' and which 'forces us to seek to know God' through faith and obedience;
  • "Torah-mysticism", a view of God's laws as the central expression of God's will and therefore as worthy object not only of obedience but also of loving meditation and Torah study; and
  • poverty, an ascetic value, based on the apocalyptic expectation of God's impending arrival, that characterized the Jewish people's reaction to being oppressed by a series of foreign empires.
In Christian mysticism, Shekhinah became mystery, Da'at became gnosis, and poverty became an important component of monasticism.[13]

Alexandria - Greek philosophy
The Alexandrian contribution to Christian mysticism centers on Origen and Clement of Alexandria. Clement was an early 'Christian humanist' who argued that reason is the most important aspect of human existence and that gnosis (not something we can attain by ourselves, but the gift of Christ) helps us find the spiritual realities that are hidden behind the natural world and within the scriptures. Given the importance of reason, Clement stresses apatheia as a reasonable ordering of our passions in order to live within God's love, which is seen as a form of truth.[14]

Origen, who had a lasting influence on Eastern Christian thought, further develops the idea that the spiritual realities can be found through allegorical readings of the scriptures (along the lines of Jewish aggadah tradition), but he focused his attention on the Cross and on the importance of imitating Christ through the Cross, especially through spiritual combat and asceticism. Origen stresses the importance of combining intellect and virtue (theoria and praxis) in our spiritual exercises, drawing on the image of Moses and Aaron leading the Israelites through the wilderness, and he describes our union with God as the marriage of our souls with Christ the Logos, using the wedding imagery from the Song of Songs.[15] Alexandrian mysticism developed alongside Hermeticism and Neoplatonism and therefore share some of the same ideas, images, etc. in spite of their differences.[16]

Philo of Alexandria was a Jewish Hellenistic philosopher who was important for connecting the Hebrew Scriptures to Greek thought, and thereby to [later] Greek Christians, who struggled to understand their connection to Jewish history. In particular, Philo taught that allegorical interpretations of the Hebrew Scriptures provides access to the real meanings of the texts. Philo also taught the need to bring together the contemplative focus of the Stoics and Essenes with the active lives of virtue and community worship found in Platonism and the Therapeutae. Using terms reminiscent of the Platonists, Philo described the intellectual component of faith as a sort of spiritual ecstasy in which our nous (mind) is suspended and God's Spirit takes its place. Philo's ideas influenced the Alexandrian Christians, Clement and Origen and through them, Gregory of Nyssa.[17]

User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 5397
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:25 pm

2017-04-19

How Early Did Some Jews Believe in a Slain Messiah son of Joseph?

https://vridar.org/2017/04/19/how-early ... ment-83670

  • Slippery Pete 2017-12-16 04:57:40

    “Accordingly we have in this section of Mishnah [the Gemara], typically dated prior to 200 CE, later rabbinic additions in Aramaic. But the Aramaic text is quoting references to Messiah ben Joseph that are in Hebrew text.”

    Minor correction: The discussion of Messiah ben Joseph in Sukkah 52a is part of the Gemara, not the Mishnah.
Last edited by MrMacSon on Sat May 05, 2018 9:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Ben C. Smith
Posts: 5458
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:18 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:51 am

MrMacSon wrote:
Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:25 pm
Slippery Pete 2017-12-16 04:57:40

“Accordingly we have in this section of Mishnah, typically dated prior to 200 CE, later rabbinic additions in Aramaic. But the Aramaic text is quoting references to Messiah ben Joseph that are in Hebrew text.”

Minor correction: The discussion of Messiah ben Joseph in Sukkah 52a is part of the Gemara, not the Mishnah.
"Slippery Pete" (whoever that may be) is correct. The passage in question comes from the Gemara, not from the Mishnah. I have the PDF of this article, and Mitchell makes this clear when he writes concerning the passage:

Now let’s decode the text a bit. To do so, we must begin with the Mishnah which precedes this Gemara.

The initial argument for the Hebrew parts dating from 200 or before derives from Mishnaic Hebrew being a dead language after around 200 or so. The separation of the text into Aramaic and Hebrew has to do with finding older traditions in the Gemara.

The Rabbi Dosa from the title of the article and from part of the debate described by the Gemara appears to be Dosa ben Harkinas, according to Mitchell, though he is having to disagree with Klausner on this point.

The argument in the article is, at the very least, suggestive. There can be no doubt that even the Gemara (let alone the Mishnah!) preserves at least some traditions dating to before the fall of Jerusalem; the trick, as always, is to figure out which ones are which.
Last edited by Ben C. Smith on Sat Dec 16, 2017 7:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
ΤΙ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΑΛΕΘΕΙΑ

User avatar
Ben C. Smith
Posts: 5458
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:18 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by Ben C. Smith » Sat Dec 16, 2017 7:44 am

Something else strikes me from that article by Mitchell:

The ‘Four Craftsmen’ appear in a total of seven texts in two major variants. Our present text and two more give Messiah ben David, Messiah ben Joseph, Elijah and the Righteous Priest in that order. As these are amoraic versions of the tradition, I shall call them Variant B. The older tannaitic version of the tradition – Variant A – also appears in three texts, which name in order Elijah, the King Messiah, Melchizedek, and the War Messiah. A third variant (C) resembles B, but replaces the priest with a Manasseh Messiah.

....

Such a date is confirmed by the early first century BCE Qumran text 4Q175 (4QTest). It features four testimonies clearly demarcated by spaces and a hook-shaped symbol. The first three are routinely seen as representing end-time prophet, priest and king figures. The fourth figure, Joshua, on the other hand, has long been ignored. Yet, given the messianic tenor of the text, it must represent a Joshua Messiah, that is, a Messiah from Joseph. Therefore 4Q175 features prophet, priest, king, and Josephite War Messiah. These are not only the same figures as the ‘Four Craftsmen’, but are even in the same order as the tannaitic Variant A.

Elijah = prophet; Melchizedek = priest.

Mitchell provides a handy table of the four figures (the "four craftsmen" of Zechariah 1.20-21) in their three different manifestations in the Jewish texts:

Four Craftsmen.jpg
Four Craftsmen.jpg (95.69 KiB) Viewed 3166 times

I posted 4Q175 (4QTestimonia) on my thread about Joshua and Jesus: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=3076, but I will post it here, as well, and divide the text up according to the prophet/king/priest/Joshua rubric which Mitchell mentions:

[Prophet:] 1 And **** spoke to Moses saying: [Deuteronomy 5.28-29] «You have heard the sound of the words of 2 this people, what they said to you: all they have said is right. 3 If (only) it were given (that) they had /this/ heart to fear me and keep all 4 my precepts all the days, so that it might go well with them and their sons for ever!» 5 [Deuteronomy 18.18-19] «I would raise up for them a prophet from among their brothers, like you, and place my words 6 in his mouth, and he would tell them all that I command him. And it will happen that /the/ man 7 who does not listen to my words which the prophet will speak in my name, I 8 shall require a reckoning from him.» ....

[King:] 9 And he uttered his poem and said: [Numbers 24.15-17] «Oracle of Balaam, son of Beor, and oracle of the man 10 of penetrating eye, oracle of him who listens to the words of God and knows the knowledge of the Most High, who 11 sees the vision of Shaddai, lying down and with an open eye. I see him, but not now, 12 I espy him, but not close up. A star has departed from Jacob, and a sceptre /has arisen/ from Israel. He shall crush 13 the temples of Moab, and cut to pieces all the sons of Sheth.» ....

[Priest:] 14 And about Levi he says: [Deuteronomy 33.8-11] «Give to Levi your Thummim and your Urim, to your pious man, whom 15 I tested at Massah, and with whom I quarrelled about the waters of Meribah, /he who/ said to his father {not} 16 {...} and to his mother ‘I have not known you’, and did not acknowledge his brothers, and his sons he did not 17 want to know. For he observed your word and kept your covenant. /They have made/ your judgments /shine/ for Jacob, 18 your law for Israel, they have placed incense in your nose and a whole offering upon your altar. 19 Bless, ****, his courage and accept with pleasure the work of his hand! Crush /the loins/ of his adversaries, and those who hate him, 20 may they not rise!» ....

[Joshua:] 21 .... At the moment when Joshua finished praising and giving thanks with his psalms, 22 he said [Joshua 6.26] «Cursed be the man who rebuilds this city! Upon his firstborn 33 will he found it, and upon his youngest son will he erect its gates!» And now an accursed /man/, one of Belial, 24 will arise to be a [fo]wler’s tr[ap] for his people and ruin for all his neighbours. And 25 […] will arise [to b]e the two instruments of violence. And they will rebuild 26 [this city and ere]ct for it a rampart and towers, to make it into a fortress of wickedness 27 [in the country and a great evil] in Israel, and a horror in Ephraim and Judah. 28 [... And they will com]mit a profanation in the land and a great blasphemy among the sons of 29 [Jacob. And they will shed blo]od like water upon the ramparts of the daughter of Zion and in the precincts of 30 .... {in} Jerusalem.

Joshua, needless to say, is a descendant of Joseph though the tribe of Ephraim (Numbers 13.8, 16), just like the War Messiah, Messiah ben Joseph, is supposed to be.
ΤΙ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΑΛΕΘΕΙΑ

User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 5397
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by MrMacSon » Sat Dec 16, 2017 11:21 pm

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:51 am
MrMacSon wrote:
Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:25 pm
Slippery Pete 2017-12-16 04:57:40

“Accordingly we have in this section of Mishnah, typically dated prior to 200 CE, later rabbinic additions in Aramaic. But the Aramaic text is quoting references to Messiah ben Joseph that are in Hebrew text.”

Minor correction: The discussion of Messiah ben Joseph in Sukkah 52a is part of the Gemara, not the Mishnah.
"Slippery Pete" (whoever that may be) is correct. The passage in question comes from the Gemara, not from the Mishnah. I have the PDF of this article, and Mitchell makes this clear when he writes concerning the passage:

Now let’s decode the text a bit. To do so, we must begin with the Mishnah which precedes this Gemara.

The initial argument for the Hebrew parts dating from 200 or before derives from Mishnaic Hebrew being a dead language after around 200 or so.

The separation of the text into Aramaic and Hebrew has to do with finding older traditions in the Gemara.

The Rabbi Dosa from the title of the article and from part of the debate described by the Gemara appears to be Dosa ben Harkinas, according to Mitchell, though he is having to disagree with Klausner on this point.

The argument in the article is, at the very least, suggestive. There can be no doubt that even the Gemara (let alone the Mishnah!) preserves at least some traditions dating to before the fall of Jerusalem; the trick, as always, is to figure out which ones are which.
Cheers Ben. There's so many aspects and layers to these traditions ...

andrewcriddle
Posts: 1537
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 12:36 am

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by andrewcriddle » Mon Dec 18, 2017 12:04 pm

Ben C. Smith wrote:
Sat Dec 16, 2017 7:44 am


I posted 4Q175 (4QTestimonia) on my thread about Joshua and Jesus: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=3076, but I will post it here, as well, and divide the text up according to the prophet/king/priest/Joshua rubric which Mitchell mentions:

[Prophet:] 1 And **** spoke to Moses saying: [Deuteronomy 5.28-29] «You have heard the sound of the words of 2 this people, what they said to you: all they have said is right. 3 If (only) it were given (that) they had /this/ heart to fear me and keep all 4 my precepts all the days, so that it might go well with them and their sons for ever!» 5 [Deuteronomy 18.18-19] «I would raise up for them a prophet from among their brothers, like you, and place my words 6 in his mouth, and he would tell them all that I command him. And it will happen that /the/ man 7 who does not listen to my words which the prophet will speak in my name, I 8 shall require a reckoning from him.» ....

[King:] 9 And he uttered his poem and said: [Numbers 24.15-17] «Oracle of Balaam, son of Beor, and oracle of the man 10 of penetrating eye, oracle of him who listens to the words of God and knows the knowledge of the Most High, who 11 sees the vision of Shaddai, lying down and with an open eye. I see him, but not now, 12 I espy him, but not close up. A star has departed from Jacob, and a sceptre /has arisen/ from Israel. He shall crush 13 the temples of Moab, and cut to pieces all the sons of Sheth.» ....

[Priest:] 14 And about Levi he says: [Deuteronomy 33.8-11] «Give to Levi your Thummim and your Urim, to your pious man, whom 15 I tested at Massah, and with whom I quarrelled about the waters of Meribah, /he who/ said to his father {not} 16 {...} and to his mother ‘I have not known you’, and did not acknowledge his brothers, and his sons he did not 17 want to know. For he observed your word and kept your covenant. /They have made/ your judgments /shine/ for Jacob, 18 your law for Israel, they have placed incense in your nose and a whole offering upon your altar. 19 Bless, ****, his courage and accept with pleasure the work of his hand! Crush /the loins/ of his adversaries, and those who hate him, 20 may they not rise!» ....

[Joshua:] 21 .... At the moment when Joshua finished praising and giving thanks with his psalms, 22 he said [Joshua 6.26] «Cursed be the man who rebuilds this city! Upon his firstborn 33 will he found it, and upon his youngest son will he erect its gates!» And now an accursed /man/, one of Belial, 24 will arise to be a [fo]wler’s tr[ap] for his people and ruin for all his neighbours. And 25 […] will arise [to b]e the two instruments of violence. And they will rebuild 26 [this city and ere]ct for it a rampart and towers, to make it into a fortress of wickedness 27 [in the country and a great evil] in Israel, and a horror in Ephraim and Judah. 28 [... And they will com]mit a profanation in the land and a great blasphemy among the sons of 29 [Jacob. And they will shed blo]od like water upon the ramparts of the daughter of Zion and in the precincts of 30 .... {in} Jerusalem.

Joshua, needless to say, is a descendant of Joseph though the tribe of Ephraim (Numbers 13.8, 16), just like the War Messiah, Messiah ben Joseph, is supposed to be.
It has been argued that the first paragraph of 4QTestimonia is based not on Deuteronomy but on the Samaritan version of Exodus 20
See Skehan

Andrew Criddle

User avatar
Ben C. Smith
Posts: 5458
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:18 pm
Location: USA
Contact:

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by Ben C. Smith » Mon Dec 18, 2017 12:36 pm

andrewcriddle wrote:
Mon Dec 18, 2017 12:04 pm
It has been argued that the first paragraph of 4QTestimonia is based not on Deuteronomy but on the Samaritan version of Exodus 20
See Skehan
Very interesting!

Samaritan Exodus 20.21: 21 And the people stood afar off, and Moses drew near unto the thick darkness where God [was].And the Yahuah said to Moses to say: I heard what people have said. All that they have spoken to you, they have spoken wisely. All that they have spoken let them put in their hearts so that they can keep my commandments in all their days, so that it would be good to them and to sons of them forever. A prophet I shall raise up to them from the midst of their brothers, and I will place words of me into his mouth to speak to them all that I'm commanding them. And it becomes that the man who will not listen to his words that are spoken in my name, I shall require from him. But the prophet who will speak insolently in my name that which I have not instructed him to speak, or if he speaks in the name of other Gods, such prophet shall die. And if you will ask yourself in your heart how you shall know which word God has spoken and which he has not, see if the word spoken comes to pass. And if it shall not come to pass then this is not the word of the Yahuah, in insolence spoken the prophet. Not you shall listen to him. Go now back to your tent and I will speak to you regarding all commandments and ordinances and verdicts that you shall teach them, and what to do in the land that I give them for possession.

ΤΙ ΕΣΤΙΝ ΑΛΕΘΕΙΑ

User avatar
MrMacSon
Posts: 5397
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:45 pm

Re: The Mishna, etc

Post by MrMacSon » Fri Dec 29, 2017 4:28 pm

Comments from elsewhere -

1. 'Thomas L Brodie argues that Jesus is a creation of (Christian) scribes working from the Hebrew Bible.'

2. 'Robert M Price thinks Jesus was a divine figure inferred or developed from Jewish scripture who was historicized along the same pattern as other pagan gods, with the quasi-historical Gospel stories consisting largely of reworked narratives and themes from the Tanakh (like Brodie).'
  • (responding to person 1's comment that ''Price, on the other hand [ie. cf. Brodie], is from the history of religion school and argues that Jesus is a 'Christianization' of pagan myths").
Last edited by MrMacSon on Sun Dec 31, 2017 3:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Post Reply