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What Kind of Sect was the Yaḥad? A Comparative Approach

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents the Yaḥad, its ideology and social life, in light of the sociological concept of sects, as well as comparisons with other sects of the same type. It summarizes some of the ideas developed in Sectarianism in Qumran: A Cross-Cultural Perspective, incorporating several fresh insights and more recent scholarship on the Yaḥad and the Community Rule. Revelation as a religious phenomenon is the essence of Jewish-Christian religious tradition. What distinguishes the Yaḥads concept of revelation is that revelations were institutionalized as an integral part of the social system. The social structure of the Yaḥad was complex. On the one hand, it was a democratic group. On the other hand, there were several types of hierarchy within the Yaḥad. Priests, especially the Sons of Zadok, had greater authority.

Keywords: revelation; Sectarianism in Qumran: A Cross-Cultural Perspective; Yaḥad



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