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The Prohibition Of Judicial Corruption In The Dead Sea Scrolls, Philo, Josephus And Talmudic Law

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Chapter Summary

Since Jewish law understood itself as maintaining the cosmic balance which was upset by injustice and inequity, we can expect to find that the punishment of judicial corruption would be a major issue. This chapter finds that this remained a major issue in all the early post-biblical legal corpora of Jewish law, regardless of the fundamentally different provenances, approaches, and datings of these systems. It sketches the biblical background, and treats the evidence of the Dead Sea Scrolls, discussions of this issue in Philo and Josephus, and the rabbinic evidence. The chapter shows that the Torah's laws pertaining to the administration of justice are in agreement with the dominant ideals of Hellenic thought. The Temple Scroll says that judicial corruption profanes the Temple, and Philo and Josephus say it is a direct affront to the notion of God's sovereignty.

Keywords: Dead Sea Scrolls; God; Jewish law; Josephus; judicial corruption; Philo; rabbinic literature



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