My last two articles have been: What is a Torah? and What is a Sefer Torah?, and now I want to address who writes Sefer Torahs. The Hebrew word Sofer (or sopher) (plural: soferim/sopherim) means "one who counts", and refers to Jewish scribes who have faithfully copied the Torah for thousands of years. I find it interesting the the scribes are called "counters" and not "writers". Only a trained and certified Sofer...
My last article was What is a Torah?, and now I want to discuss a particular type of Torah. A Sefer Torah is a handwritten copy of the Torah on a scroll, rather than in a book, and is still used for ceremonial purposes in Synagogues. On Mondays and Thursdays short sections of the Torah are read, and a longer sections are read on Saturday (Sabbath, Shabbat) and during festivals; over the course of a year, the entire scroll will be read....
Hebrew word Torah means "instruction",
"teaching" or "direction" and is often translated as
"law", which includes both written and oral laws of the Israelites.
The word Torah (Hebrew תּוֹרָה) most frequently refers to the first five books of
the Hebrew Bible, which are the same as the first five books of the Christian
Old Testament. These books are also called the Pentateuch
(Greek) by Christians and the Taurat
In 2015, a Christian
documentary was released named Patterns of Evidence: The Exodus. Many scholars believe the
Exodus as described in the Bible never happened, and many archaeologists agree
that opinion. The purpose of Patterns of
Evidence: The Exodus is to show that archaeologists are looking for
evidence from the wrong time period, so naturally there wouldn't be evidence of
the Exodus. A few simple calculations using dates the Bible gives leads...
This is the last article in a short series that started with the question Who were the Masoretes? and then followed up with Why is the Masoretic Text Important?. This list contains some of the oldest Masoretic Texts and copies which still exist. All of these are more than 1,000 years, and some of them have been in almost continuous use since they were written.
- Damascus Pentateuch
My last post, Who were the Masoretes?, described the
work of the Masoretes. Now I want to focus on why their work is important to
The great, indeed all-important, question which now meets us is this—Does this Hebrew text, which we call Masoretic, and which we have shown to descend from a text drawn up about AD 100, faithfully represent the Hebrew text...
The Masoretes were
Jewish scribes and scholars who made it their life's work to accurately copy
the Hebrew Bible. They worked approximately from the A.D. 600's to A.D. 950,
primarily in the areas of Jerusalem, Tiberius and Babylonia. The name Masoretes
comes from the Hebrew word masorah,
which means "tradition" or "to hand down".
During the first century A.D. Rome ruled over Israel. In A.D. 66, the first...
In archaeology, a bulla (plural bullae)
is a clay seal used when documents or goods were transferred from one person to
another. The sender would put a small piece of wet clay over where the item
would be opened, then press in a signet to seal the item and ensure it's
authenticity. An unbroken seal would let the recipient know the item wasn't
tampered with. A more modern equivalent would be a wax seal on a formal letter