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Pharisaic And Sadducean Halakhah In Light Of The Dead Sea Scrolls: The Case Of Ṭevul Yom

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Chapter Summary

This chapter addresses the case of the Red Heifer which makes clear the Pharisaic and Sadducean views on this topic. Our survey of Qumran sources begins with the still controversial 4QMiqṣat Ma'aśe Ha-Torah (4QMMT), the "Halakhic Letter," which may be regarded as a foundation document of the Qumran sect. In 4QMMT B65-72 there is a detailed discussion of the laws relating to those afflicted with צרעת, the skin disease usually incorrectly translated as "leprosy," and other skin ailments. Tannaitic strata testify to earlier Pharisaic traditions against which the authors of 4QMMT, the Temple Scroll, the Zadokite Fragments and other documents argue. This situation can be observed in regard to many laws referred to in the Qumran texts. Accordingly, a larger and larger corpus of definitely Pharisaic halakhot is emerging from our study of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Keywords: 4QMiqṣat Ma'aśe Ha-Torah (4QMMT); Dead Sea Scrolls; Qumran sect; Temple Scroll; Zadokite Fragments



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