New PDF release: From the Maccabees to the Mishnah, Second Edition

By Shaye J. D. Cohen

ISBN-10: 0664227430

ISBN-13: 9780664227432

During this new version of a best-selling vintage, Shaye Cohen deals an intensive research of Judaism's improvement from the early years of the Roman Empire to the formative interval of rabbinic Judaism. Cohen's synthesis of faith, literature, and heritage deals deep perception into the character of Judaism at this key interval, together with the connection among Jews and Gentiles, the functionality of Jewish faith within the higher group, and the improvement of normative Judaism and different Jewish sects. additionally, Cohen offers transparent causes in regards to the formation of the biblical canon and the roots of rabbinic Judaism. Now thoroughly up to date and revised, this e-book is still the clearest creation to the period that formed Judaism and supplied the context for early Christianity.The Library of Early Christianity is a chain of 8 remarkable books exploring the Jewish and Greco-Roman contexts during which the recent testomony constructed.

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Extra info for From the Maccabees to the Mishnah, Second Edition

Sample text

18:26). By the fourth or third century B C E , it became a literary language for the Jews (Dan. 2-7, Tbbit, and Enoch were written in Aramaic) and would so remain until the Middle Ages. By the first century B C E , it was used for the translation and paraphrase of scripture. In rabbinic times, from the third century C E onward in both the land of Israel and Babylonia, Ara­ maic was the language of both scholars and boors, and was used for Bible translations and legal discussions, synagogue homilies and prayers, popular storytelling and magical incantations.

Rabbinic literature confirms that during and after the war the Romans forbade circumcision as well as other Jewish practices (including recitation of the Shema, public study of the Torah, and observance of the Sab­ bath), but whether this persecution was a cause or a consequence of the war is an important point that, again, we cannot determine precisely. In any case, both of these ancient historians agree that this war was provoked by a Roman action against the J e w s . In the rabbinic imagination, Hadrian was another Epiphanes, another gentile ruler who sought to destroy Judaism, but for us Hadrian's motives, as well as those of Epiphanes, remain obscure.

Conversion to J u d a i s m T h e Hebrew Bible is not familiar with either a general prohibition of intermar­ riage or the conversion of gentiles to Judaism. Deuteronomy 7:1-^4 prohibits the marriage of Israelites with the seven Canaanite nations; Deuteronomy 23:2-9 prohibits the members of four other nations "to enter the congregation of the Lord," which might be a prohibition of intermarriage. Other nations, apparendy, were not bound by any prohibition. In contrast with Deuteronomy, Leviticus is not familiar with any prohibition of intermarriage, even for Canaanites.

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From the Maccabees to the Mishnah, Second Edition by Shaye J. D. Cohen


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