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Dead Sea Scrolls

The Valley of Dry Bones and the Resurrection of the Dead

Originally an allegorical vision about the future return of Judeans to their land, Ezekiel’s vision (ch. 37) becomes one of the cornerstones for the Jewish belief in the resurrection of the dead. The early stages of this development are made clear in a little-known Qumran scroll called Pseudo-Ezekiel.

Prof.

Devorah Dimant

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Rosh Hashanah Between Tanach and Mishna

The Missing Links

Project TABS Editors

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Keeping Excrement out of God's Presence

The Torah requires all Israelite soldiers to carry a shovel with them for covering their feces, outside the war camp, because God is in the camp. Jewish interpreters have grappled with the meaning of this law: the Qumranites and Karaites assume feces must be impure, the rabbis extend the law to prayer and Torah study, and some medievalist interpreted the law homiletically, as a goad towards maintaining human decency at all times, even during war.

Prof.

Alan Cooper

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“All of Jacob’s Descendants Numbered Seventy-Five”: The Opening of Exodus in the Dead Sea Scrolls

The Book of Exodus begins with an accounting of the members of Jacob's family who went with him to Egypt. Our Torah, the Masoretic Text, lists 70 people. Dead Sea Scroll manuscript 4QExb, however, records 75 people. How do we account for this and other differences between the texts?

Prof.

Marc Zvi Brettler

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The Prohibition to Carry on Shabbat: Historical and Exegetical Development

The Sabbath laws offers an instructive model for how Jews in antiquity engaged in creative reinterpretation of biblical texts in order to expand their limited application and to ensure that their customary practice comported with their sacred texts. Using the prohibition against carrying as formulated in Second Temple period texts and rabbinic literature as an example, this analysis traces the history of this law as well as the strategies by which later authors exegetically engage and transform earlier textual material.[1] 

Dr.

Alex P. Jassen

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The Origins of Tefillin

How a biblical metaphor was reinterpreted in light of a practice of wearing amulets for bodily protection.

Dr.

Yehudah Cohn

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Judean Desert Texts Outside Qumran

Prof.

Emanuel Tov

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The Oldest Known Copy of the Decalogue?

A careful examination of the three oldest copies of the Decalogue—4QDeutn, 4QPaleoExodusm, and the Nash Papyrus—surprisingly shows that none of them reflects the Masoretic Text.

Dr.

Esther Eshel

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Intimacy on Shabbat: Was It Always a Mitzvah?

A Surprising Look at Shabbat in the Second Temple Period

Dr.

Malka Zeiger Simkovich

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Other Biblical Text Traditions

Prof.

Emanuel Tov

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