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orion-list DSS and the Pharisees

Greetings everyone

This is my first post to this list and so what I my inquire of may not be up
to the usual scholarly standards of other posts that appear on this list.

My post concerns the all occurances of the Pharisees in the Dead Sea
Scrolls. I am in the process of compiling a list such a list, and need some
help. I am looking not only for occurences of terms which refer to the
Pharisees, but also the reasoning for why those terms do. Here is what I
have found so far...

(Please note, I do not read Hebrew and so the terms are given as they occur
in the DSS, i.e. without vowels)

Pharisees as "those looking for easy interpretations" (Heb.DWRShY HChLQWT)

The easiest term for the Pharisees in the Dead Sea Scrolls to identify is
^”those looking for easy interpretations^‘. This is due to the following two
passages from 4QNahum Pesher [4Q169], namely 4QNahum Pesher [4Q169], frags.
3+4 1.2, 3 and 4QNahum Pesher [4Q169], frags. 3+4 1.6-8. The identification
is easy because Josephus relates these same events in Jewish Antiquities.
However, there Josephus does not relate exactly who the opponents were to
"Angry Lion" (i.e. Alexander Jannaeus). However, as E. P. Sanders points

Many scholars, with good cause, believe that these internal opponents were
Pharisees or were led by Pharisees. There are three reasons for this view:
(1) In discussing Hyrcanus Josephus mentioned animosity towards him ^—and his
sons^“, and then immediately referred to the hostility of the Pharisees
(Antiq. 13.288). He added that Hyrcanus^“ break with the Pharisees led to the
^—hatred of the masses for him and his sons^“ (13.296). Since Jannaeus was the
son of Hyrcanus who reigned for a substantial period of time, it is
reasonable to see the Pharisees as playing a major role in the internal
opposition to him. (2) On his deathbed, Jannaeus (according to Josephus)
counseled Salome Alexandra to ^—yield a certain amount of power to the
Pharisees^“, since they could ^—dispose the nation favourably towards her^“
(Antiq. 13.401). This seems to show that it was the Pharisees who had caused
Jannaeus trouble. (3) The story of Salome Alexandra^“s reign also points
towards the Pharisees as the leaders of opposition to Jannaeus.
-Judaism: Practice and Belief, 63 BCE ^÷ 66 CE, p. 381

Sanders elaborates on the third point by showing how under the reign of
Salome Alexandra (76 ^÷ 67 BCE) the Pharisees had a time of influence in the
political life of the country. During this period, Josephus states that The
Pharisees took revenge against those who persuaded Alexander to crucify the
800 captives (Ant. 13.410). These three points, then, demonstrate that the
Pharisees were most likely the leaders of the opposition against Alexander
Jannaeus. With the term "those looking for easy interpretations" linked to
the Pharisees, the following list of passages are revealed to also refer to
the Pharisees.

Damascus Document, 1.11-21; 1QHodayot, 10.15 [2.15]; 10.31, 32 [2.31, 32];
4QIsaiah Pesher c, frag. 23 2.10; 4QNahum Pesher [4Q169], frags. 3+4 2.2;
frags. 3+4 2.4-6; frags. 3+4 3.3-5; frags. 3+4 3.6-8; 4QCatena A, frags.
11+10+26+9+20+7 2.12, 13

Pharisees as "the mediators of deceit" (Heb. MLYTzY KZB)

In 1QHodayot, 10.31, 32 [2.31, 32], this term stands in parallel with "those
looking for easy interpretations". This epithet occurs later in 1QHodayot,
12.9-12 [4.9-12] where they are decribed as exchanging the Teacher of
Righteousness' revelations "for flattering teachings for your people"
(Martinez). This would seem to confirm the link of this term with the

Pharisees as "seers of deceit" (Heb. ChWNY RMYH)

This term occurs with "the mediators of deceit" in 1QHodayot, 12.9-12

Pharisees as "mediators of deceit" (Heb. MLYTzY RMYH)

This term is seen when one opens up 1QHodayot, 12.9-12 [4.9-12] to its
larger context (it occurs in 1QHodayot, 12.7 [4.7])

Pharisees as "builders of the wall" (Heb. BWNY HChYTz)

This is based on two points. First of all,the Damascus Document, 5.6, 7 says
that "each man takes as a wife a daughter of his brother and the daughter of
his sister". (Martinez) This is probably a reference to the Pharisee
position that uncle and neice marrages were acceptable. Secondly, Damascus
Document, 5.11-15 states that they said of the Teacher of Righteousness'
revelations "they are unfounded" (Martinez) which is similar to what is said
concerning "the mediators of deceit" in 1QHodayot, 12.6-20 [4.6-20] "For
they said of the vision of knowledge: It is not certain! And of the path of
your heart: It is not that!" (Martinez) Other occurances are as follow:

Damascus Document, 4.19, 20; 5.20-6.2; 8.12, 13, 18

Pharisees as "Ephraim" (Heb. 'PhRYM)

Ephraim is identified with ^”those looking for easy interpretations" in
4QNahum Pesher, frags. 3+4 2.2. The passages that Ephraim occurs in with
this sence are as follows:

4QNahum Pesher [4Q169], frags. 3+4 2.8-10; frags. 3+4 3.3-5; frags. 3+4 4.5,
6; 4QpPsalmsa [4Q171], Col. I (frag. 1) 1.21-24; Col. II (frag. 1) 2.18-20;
CD-A 7.12-14(maybe?)

One of the things that I find weird about the term Ephraim as applied to the
Pharisees is that the Scolls speak of people misdirecting them and that "in
the final time" "when the glory of Judah is re[ve]aled the simple people of
Ephraim will flee from among their assembly" (Martinez). Infact, it seems
that Ephraim has need of qualifier when reference is made to it. For
example, "the wicked of Ephraim" and "the simple people of Ephraim". I do
not know what to make of the term Ephraim other than it is somehow linked to
the Pharisees, but perhaps it may represent a wider group which included the
Pharisees, and thus the term does not represent the Pharisees exclusively.

This is all I have been able to find with the help of some of the things I
have read on the issue and extending them. I would really like any
additional terms brought to my attention of anyone has them and the
reasonings to support them. Also, if you disagree with anything that I have
said above, please feel free to point out where I have erred.

Also, while looking through the previous posts on the net I noticed that
Eibert J. C. Tigchelaar posts to this list. I wanted to say thank you to him
for making such an affordable way for people to have access to the Hebrew
texts of the scrolls. (I am refering to the two volume paperback edition of
The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition). They are a great addition to my

Anthony Becker

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