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Class:REL 220 - Intro to Biblical Literature
Subject:Religion
University:Hope College
Term:Spring 2010
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Apocrypha (adj. apocryphal; from Greek for "to hide, to cover") It is used in a technical sense to refer to certain Jewish books written in the Hellenistic-Roman period that came to be included in the Old Greek Jewish scriptures (and thus also in the Eastern Christian biblical canon) and in the Latin Vulgate Roman Catholic canon, but not in the Jewish or Protestant biblical canons; they are called deutero-canonical books in the Roman Catholic tradition.
Canon The authorized collection of material constituting the sacred writings of a religious community; the material is believed to have special, usually divine, authority; the Hebrew Bible is the canon of the Jewish community; the Old and New Testaments (respectively with and without the Apocrypha) are the canon of the Roman Catholic and Protestant Christian communities. (I, C)
Dead Sea Scrolls A collection of scrolls dating to the first century BCE found in caves near the Dead Sea; they are generally thought to be linked with the settlement at Qumran, and with a Jewish religious group called the Essenes. (CON)
Deuterocanonical An adjective literally meaning "forming a second canon". This term pertains to certain writings not found in the Hebrew Bible that are still regarded as part of the Old Testament by Roman Catholic Christians; others call such books "apocryphal".
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Early Judaism Also sometimes called "formative," "proto-," "middle," and by some scholars even "late" Judaism; refers to Judaism in the intertestamental period (and slightly later) as a development from the religion of ancient Israel, but prior to the emergence of its classical, rabbinic form in the early centuries CE.
Essenes A Jewish group that lived in retreat in the wilderness of Judea between the first century BCE and the first CE, according to Josephus, the elder, Pliny, and Philo. See also Dead Sea Scrolls and Qumran.
Hebrew Bible The collection of 24 books written by Israelites and Jews in the first millennium BCE mostly in the Hebrew language, with portions of Ezra and Daniel written in Aramaic. The Jewish title for the collection is Tanak (also written Tanakh), and the Christian title is Old Testament. The Hebrew Bible is the Written Torah of Judaism and the first portion of the canon of Christianity. (INT, CON)
Intertestamental Period The period in which early Judaism developed, between about 400 BCE (the traditional end date for the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible) and the first century CE (the composition of the Christian New Testament); the Jewish intertestamental literature includes the Apocrypha (mostly preserved in Greek) and the Pseudepigrapha (works from this period ascribed to ancient authors like Enoch, the ancestors, and Moses).
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Judah The Prince (also known as Judah Hanasi) Head of the rabbinic Jewish community in Palestine around 200 CE; credited with publication of the Mishnah.
Mishnah (Hebrew for "repetition, teaching") A thematic compilation of legal material; in particular, a compilation by Rabbi Judah Hanasi ("the Prince"), of laws based ultimately on principles laid down in the Torah; produced about 200 CE, it became the most authoritative collection of oral Torah; the code is divided into six major units and sixty-three minor ones; the work is the authoritative legal tradition of the early sages and is the basis of the legal discussions of the Talmud. See also Oral Torah.
New Testament (abbreviated NT) The collection of Christian canonical writings that together with the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible constitute the Christian Bible. See also Apocrypha.
Old Testament (abbreviated OT) The name of the Hebrew Bible used in the Christian community; it presupposes that there is a New Testament; the term testament goes back to testamentum, the Latin equivalent for the Hebrew word covenant; for most Protestant Christians, the Old Testament is identical to the Hebrew Bible; for classical Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox Christianity, the Old Testament also includes the Apocrypha. (INT, CON)
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Oral Torah (also called oral law) In traditional Jewish pharisaic/rabbinic thought, God revealed instructions for living through both the written scriptures of the Hebrew Bible, called the Written Torah, and through a parallel process of orally transmitted traditions; these oral applications of the Torah for contemporary situations themselves later took written form in the Mishnah and other Jewish literature; the Jewish belief in both a written and an oral Torah{AU: OK? YES} is known as "the dual Torah"; critics of this approach within Judaism include the Sadducees and the Karaites.
Palestinian Judaism The postbiblical form of Judaism that developed in Palestine, in distinction from Hellenistic Judaism.
Pharisees The name of a group or sect of Judaism out of which rabbis emerged who taught the oral and written torah; in distinction from the Sadducees they believed in the authority of oral torah, the immortality of the soul and the resurrection of the dead.
Pseudepigrapha (adj. pseudepigraphical; from Greek pseudos, "deceit, untruth," and epigraphe, "writing, inscription") Intertestamental apocryphal writings purporting to be by somebody (usually a famous historical or legendary figure) who is not the author, such as Adam, Eve, Enoch, Abraham, Moses, Isaiah, Ezra, and so forth; the term is sometimes used generically for deutero-canonical writings not in the Apocrypha. See also Intertestamental period.
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Rabbinic Judaism The Judaism associated with the Pharisees that survived the Jewish revolts against Rome to become the dominant shape of Judaism. See also Pharisees.
Rabbis (adj. rabbinic; rabbi is Hebrew for "my master") The authorized teachers of the classical Jewish tradition after the fall of the Second Temple in 70 CE; traditionally, rabbis serve as the legal and spiritual guides of their congregations and communities. See also Oral Torah. (CON)
Septuagint The Greek translation of the Old Testament, consisting of the books of the Hebrew Bible and some deutero-canonical books, now know as the Apocrypha; traditionally dated to the reign of Ptolemy II (285-246); it is abbreviated LXX because it supposedly was translated by some seventy Jewish scholars.
Shema (Hebrew imperative, "Hear!") Title of the Great Commandment, the fundamental, monotheistic statement of Judaism, found in Deuteronomy 6:4 ("Hear, O Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One"); this statement affirms the unity of God, and is recited daily in the liturgy (along with Deuteronomy 6:5-9, 11:13-21; Numbers 15:37-41; and other passages), and customarily before sleep at night; this proclamation also climaxes special liturgies (such as Yom Kippur) and is central to the confessional before death and the ritual of martyrdom; the Shema is inscribed on the mezuzah and the tefillin; in public services, it is recited in unison
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Talmud (Hebrew for "study, learning") Rabbinic Judaism produced two Talmuds: the one known as "Babylonian" is the most famous in the western world, and was completed around the fifth century CE; the other, known as the "Palestinian" or "Jerusalem" Talmud, was edited perhaps in the early fourth century CE; both have as their common core the Mishnah collection of the Tannaim, to which were added commentary and discussion (Gemara) by the Amoraim (teachers) of the respective locales; gemara thus has also become a colloquial, generic term for the Talmud and its study.
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 Apocrypha(adj. apocryphal; from Greek for "to hide, to cover") It is used in a technical sense to refer to certain Jewish books written in the Hellenistic-Roman period that came to be included in the Old Greek Jewish scriptures (and thus also in the Eastern Christian biblical canon) and in the Latin Vulgate Roman Catholic canon, but not in the Jewish or Protestant biblical canons; they are called deutero-canonical books in the Roman Catholic tradition.
 CanonThe authorized collection of material constituting the sacred writings of a religious community; the material is believed to have special, usually divine, authority; the Hebrew Bible is the canon of the Jewish community; the Old and New Testaments (respectively with and without the Apocrypha) are the canon of the Roman Catholic and Protestant Christian communities. (I, C)
 Dead Sea ScrollsA collection of scrolls dating to the first century BCE found in caves near the Dead Sea; they are generally thought to be linked with the settlement at Qumran, and with a Jewish religious group called the Essenes. (CON)
 DeuterocanonicalAn adjective literally meaning "forming a second canon". This term pertains to certain writings not found in the Hebrew Bible that are still regarded as part of the Old Testament by Roman Catholic Christians; others call such books "apocryphal".
 Early Judaism Also sometimes called "formative," "proto-," "middle," and by some scholars even "late" Judaism; refers to Judaism in the intertestamental period (and slightly later) as a development from the religion of ancient Israel, but prior to the emergence of its classical, rabbinic form in the early centuries CE.
 EssenesA Jewish group that lived in retreat in the wilderness of Judea between the first century BCE and the first CE, according to Josephus, the elder, Pliny, and Philo. See also Dead Sea Scrolls and Qumran.
 Hebrew BibleThe collection of 24 books written by Israelites and Jews in the first millennium BCE mostly in the Hebrew language, with portions of Ezra and Daniel written in Aramaic. The Jewish title for the collection is Tanak (also written Tanakh), and the Christian title is Old Testament. The Hebrew Bible is the Written Torah of Judaism and the first portion of the canon of Christianity. (INT, CON)
 Intertestamental PeriodThe period in which early Judaism developed, between about 400 BCE (the traditional end date for the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible) and the first century CE (the composition of the Christian New Testament); the Jewish intertestamental literature includes the Apocrypha (mostly preserved in Greek) and the Pseudepigrapha (works from this period ascribed to ancient authors like Enoch, the ancestors, and Moses).
 Judah The Prince(also known as Judah Hanasi) Head of the rabbinic Jewish community in Palestine around 200 CE; credited with publication of the Mishnah.
 Mishnah(Hebrew for "repetition, teaching") A thematic compilation of legal material; in particular, a compilation by Rabbi Judah Hanasi ("the Prince"), of laws based ultimately on principles laid down in the Torah; produced about 200 CE, it became the most authoritative collection of oral Torah; the code is divided into six major units and sixty-three minor ones; the work is the authoritative legal tradition of the early sages and is the basis of the legal discussions of the Talmud. See also Oral Torah.
 New Testament(abbreviated NT) The collection of Christian canonical writings that together with the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible constitute the Christian Bible. See also Apocrypha.
 Old Testament(abbreviated OT) The name of the Hebrew Bible used in the Christian community; it presupposes that there is a New Testament; the term testament goes back to testamentum, the Latin equivalent for the Hebrew word covenant; for most Protestant Christians, the Old Testament is identical to the Hebrew Bible; for classical Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox Christianity, the Old Testament also includes the Apocrypha. (INT, CON)
 Oral Torah(also called oral law) In traditional Jewish pharisaic/rabbinic thought, God revealed instructions for living through both the written scriptures of the Hebrew Bible, called the Written Torah, and through a parallel process of orally transmitted traditions; these oral applications of the Torah for contemporary situations themselves later took written form in the Mishnah and other Jewish literature; the Jewish belief in both a written and an oral Torah{AU: OK? YES} is known as "the dual Torah"; critics of this approach within Judaism include the Sadducees and the Karaites.
 Palestinian JudaismThe postbiblical form of Judaism that developed in Palestine, in distinction from Hellenistic Judaism.
 PhariseesThe name of a group or sect of Judaism out of which rabbis emerged who taught the oral and written torah; in distinction from the Sadducees they believed in the authority of oral torah, the immortality of the soul and the resurrection of the dead.
 Pseudepigrapha(adj. pseudepigraphical; from Greek pseudos, "deceit, untruth," and epigraphe, "writing, inscription") Intertestamental apocryphal writings purporting to be by somebody (usually a famous historical or legendary figure) who is not the author, such as Adam, Eve, Enoch, Abraham, Moses, Isaiah, Ezra, and so forth; the term is sometimes used generically for deutero-canonical writings not in the Apocrypha. See also Intertestamental period.
 Rabbinic JudaismThe Judaism associated with the Pharisees that survived the Jewish revolts against Rome to become the dominant shape of Judaism. See also Pharisees.
 Rabbis(adj. rabbinic; rabbi is Hebrew for "my master") The authorized teachers of the classical Jewish tradition after the fall of the Second Temple in 70 CE; traditionally, rabbis serve as the legal and spiritual guides of their congregations and communities. See also Oral Torah. (CON)
 SeptuagintThe Greek translation of the Old Testament, consisting of the books of the Hebrew Bible and some deutero-canonical books, now know as the Apocrypha; traditionally dated to the reign of Ptolemy II (285-246); it is abbreviated LXX because it supposedly was translated by some seventy Jewish scholars.
 Shema(Hebrew imperative, "Hear!") Title of the Great Commandment, the fundamental, monotheistic statement of Judaism, found in Deuteronomy 6:4 ("Hear, O Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One"); this statement affirms the unity of God, and is recited daily in the liturgy (along with Deuteronomy 6:5-9, 11:13-21; Numbers 15:37-41; and other passages), and customarily before sleep at night; this proclamation also climaxes special liturgies (such as Yom Kippur) and is central to the confessional before death and the ritual of martyrdom; the Shema is inscribed on the mezuzah and the tefillin; in public services, it is recited in unison
 Talmud(Hebrew for "study, learning") Rabbinic Judaism produced two Talmuds: the one known as "Babylonian" is the most famous in the western world, and was completed around the fifth century CE; the other, known as the "Palestinian" or "Jerusalem" Talmud, was edited perhaps in the early fourth century CE; both have as their common core the Mishnah collection of the Tannaim, to which were added commentary and discussion (Gemara) by the Amoraim (teachers) of the respective locales; gemara thus has also become a colloquial, generic term for the Talmud and its study.
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