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Re: orion Chanukah, Tefillin and Minim

Paul Flesher wrote:
> Dear Jack,
> Do you believe the yerushalmi (a fourth or fifth century text) at face
> value?  I'm sorry, but improvements in methodology in the study of rabbinic
> documents over the past two decades makes that approach no longer feasible.

I realize that, Paul, but these methodologies rarely, in my experience, 
recoognize or understand the dynamics of oral transmission, even over
several centuries.

> Historical method requires that the historian test the evidence for accuracy
> and reliability BEFORE you begin to use it for historical reconstruction.
> Since there is no way to verify (or falsify) the reliability of the
> Yerushalmi's information, it is unusuable for this type of historical
> dating.

I am not as quick to dismiss oral tradition that was set to writing
in the Mishnaic period.  This was, after all, what the Pharisees were
all about.  Did Shammai really chase that guy with a stick while
Hillel told him to "go and study?"  Gamaliel and Samuel the Lesser
were historical.  How would this story about Gamaliel asking old
Sam to write up the benediction come about if not transmitted
orally for a few centuries?

John 9:2 and 16:2 seems to suggest to me that the expulsion from
the synagogues occurred shortly before the authorship of 4G.

I know it's thin...but it's something.


taybutheh d'maran yeshua masheecha am kulkon

Jack Kilmon

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