By Richard Elliott Friedman

"It is a wierd incontrovertible fact that we've got by no means identified with sure bet who produced the e-book that has performed one of these critical function in our civilization," writes Friedman, a optimal Bible pupil. From this aspect he starts an research and research that reads as compellingly as an excellent detective tale. targeting the principal books of the outdated Testament--Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy--he attracts upon biblical and archaeological facts to make a resounding argument for the identities in their authors. within the approach he paints a vibrant photo of the area of the Bible--its politics, background, and personalities. the result's a surprise of scholarship that sheds a brand new and enriching mild on our figuring out of the Bible as literature, heritage, and sacred textual content.

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Who Wrote the Bible?

"It is an odd indisputable fact that we've by no means recognized with walk in the park who produced the publication that has performed any such significant position in our civilization," writes Friedman, a prime Bible student. From this aspect he starts off an research and research that reads as compellingly as an outstanding detective tale.

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Solomon established twelve administrative districts, each of which was to provide food for the court in Jerusalem for one month of the year. The boundaries of these twelve new districts did not correspond to the existing boundaries of the twelve tribes. Solomon personally appointed the heads of each administrative district. This is like gerrymandering, squared. I t would be as if the president of the U n i t e d States established fifty new taxation The World That Produced the Bible: 1200-722 B.

Religion was not a separate, identifiable category of beliefs and activities. I t was an inseparable, pervasive part of life. A king could not have political legitimacy without religious legitimacy. A king who lost the support of his prophets and priests was i n for trouble. A n d that is what happened to Saul. Saul had a falling-out w i t h Samuel, the priest-prophet who had designated him as king. ), but the common element of the two stories is that both portray Saul as stepping over the boundary of his powers into the prerogatives of the priesthood.

The second version always refers to h i m by his name, Yahweh God— eleven times. The first version never calls h i m Yahweh; the second version never calls h i m God. Later comes the story of the great flood and Noah's ark, and i t , too, can be separated into two complete versions that sometimes duplicate each other and sometimes contradict each other. A n d , again, one version always calls the deity God, and the other version always calls h i m Yahweh. There are two versions of the story of the convenant between the deity and Abraham.

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