From Enoch to John the Essene:

An Analysis of Sects Development in 1 Enoch, Jubilees and the Essenes

Eyal Regev



Just as our knowledge of the literature composed or copied by the so-called “Qumran movement” increases, our curiosity concerning the origin and history of these people grows. How did it all begin? What is the historical and social relationship between the different documents? How are they related, if any, to the Essenes of Philo and Josephus? In the early days of the Qumran research sweeping theories were raised. Now, when all the evidence is at hand and the texts have been carefully studied from a literary perspective, it may be possible to reexamine the question of its origin and development.

Sociologists have observed that throughout time sects develop and transform their character. Some become established movements (“denominations”), while others create new sects, and in certain cases sects split into different sub-groups.[1] One may wonder whether it is possible to reconstruct this procedure in reverse, deducing the origin of the sect from its subsequent development. The obsession with understanding the origins of a historical phenomenon was criticized by Marc Bloch, who called it “The Idol of Origins”. Bloch argued that a historian should study the available evidence, and not search after its mysterious pre-history, or elusive explanations, since “a historical phenomenon can never be understood apart from its moment in time”.[2] However, in our case, the “problem of origin” is only another title for finding the relationship between already available texts. In our quest for creating order in the dense and at times chaotic world of the Dead Sea scrolls and related texts, suggesting a chronological and sociological relationship between some major compositions may be helpful.

In searching for links between different documents and trying to reconstruct the early pre-history and subsequent development of the Qumran movement, a direct historical approach is ill advised. “External” arguments concerning historical influence or literary dependence of one source upon another may be hypothetical and based on inaccurate pre-suppositions. Only a thorough analysis of each text, not only from a literary standpoint, but especially from an analysis of its ideological agenda and social framework, would it be possible to draw the links between different documents.

In this paper I will summarize the results of such an investigation, which is part of a much larger research project on sectarianism in Qumran in cross cultural perspective, in which I characterize each of the documents and groups in light of the sociological theory of sectarianism. Here I will focus on the initial conclusions regarding the ideological and social relationship between Enoch, Jubilees the major Qumranic compositions (the Temple Scroll, MMT, the Community Rule and the Damascus Document) and the Essenes.

My main aim is to compare the ideological components of 1 Enoch Jubilees and the Essenes to those that are found in the Qumranic compositions. I will also evaluate whether or not their ideology corresponds with the definition of sectarianism. The conception of sectarianism I have in mind, following the study of Stark and Bainbridge, is of tension with the world, including, antagonism, separation, and difference.[3]

The historical reconstruction that I will present should be regarded as tentative, and is mostly aimed at stimulating discussion regarding the ideological character of each text. I do not regard the historical or chronological sequence as my main aim, but view it as merely a classificatory tool in order to organize the results of the initial inquiry of degrees and types of sectarianism.


Survey of Previous Research

Since the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, many attempts have been made to reconstruct the historical development of the so-called “the Qumran movement”. Most of the discussions were based on hints from the Damascus Document and the Pesharim. At least two major hypotheses (the Babylonian origin and the Zadokite/sadduceen split) weaved complex theories from too scanty evidence.[4] At the same time, most scholars identified the Qumranites with the Essenes,[5] without sufficient attention to the seemingly small differences between them. This state of research had led to a more skeptical approach to the origins and historical development of the “Qumran movement”, under the lead of Philip Davies, and with certain support by John Collins and Florentino Garcia-Martinez.[6] Readings of the Qumran history are currently approached from a new deconstructionist perspectives, by Charllotte Hempel and Maxime Grossman.[7]

A few years ago, however, Gabriel Boccaccini published his ambitious and complex monograph, entitled Beyond the Essene Hypothesis: The Parting of the Ways between Qumran and Enochic Judaism. Boccaccini adopts an Überlieferunggeschichte approach, comparing the scrolls with the Essenes on the one hand, and the Aramaic documents in 1 Enoch (and to lesser degree, also Jubilees), on the other hand. He concludes that the Qumran movement originated from the circles of Enoch, and view the Essenes as more or less identical with the Enochic movement.[8] Boccaccini’s strength is a detailed comparison of several components of the Enochic and Qumranic belief system. His weakness, in my view, is in neglecting social dynamics as well as behavioral aspects, such as laws and rituals.

Although I share Boccaccini’s findings regarding the Encohic origins of the Qumranic ideas of cosmic dualism, angels, and eschatology, I cannot accept his identification of the Enochic movement with the Essenes. As will be shown below, the groups behind the Enochic documents, and particularly the Animal Apocalypse, the Apocalypse of Weeks, and the Epistle of Enoch are not sectarian organizations, but reform movements. They are not separated from the rest of the Jews, but rather aim to lead them. Moreover, the similarities that Boccaccini finds between 1 Enoch and the Essenes are too general - sacred books, angels, healing, providence, and immortality of the soul, and sensitivity to the pitfalls of sexuality and wealth. The lack of any of the famous Essene taboos and rituals in 1 Enoch, is ignored by Boccaccini.[9]

Boccaccini also compares the Essenes and the evidence from Qumran, mixing the literary evidence with the archaeological findings from kh. Qumran. He interpret Philo’s and Josephus’ descriptions of the Essenes in a new fashion, arguing that the Essenes married women and held private property, and consequently concludes that the Qumranites (apparently he is referring to the yahad) were much more separatist than the Essenes.[10] I find the interpretation of this evidence concerning the Essenes unconvincing, hence their identification with the Enochic movement seems forced. Notwithstanding these disagreements,  Boccaccini’s attempt advances the discussion of the problem of Qumran origins. I find his “failure” as inspiring as his success. I think the main lesson is, , that it is not sufficient to approach the question of origin and development from the perspective of shared religious ideas; it is necessary to study the social stance of each document and group, as well as the practices and rules that govern it.  


1 Enoch: the Beginning of the Pre-Sectarian Worldview

The Aramaic documents found in Qumran and later preserved in 1 Enoch have common ideological features:  heavenly revelations, cosmic dualism, God’s coming judgment of the wicked angles and corrupt humans including its eschatological consequences for the righteous ones.[11] They pre-suppose a state of evil in the world, and explain it by the acts of rebellious angels (especially in the Book of Watchers and the Animal Apocalypse), and, at times, of men that transgress God’s orders,[12] especially in relation to the calendar.[13] A certain relief from the heavenly evil lies in the heavenly realm, by angelic interferences on the part of the righteous.[14] However, the ultimate mode of deliverance is the esoteric divine wisdom: the knowledge that there is after all, order in the world, especially in the heavenly world,[15] and that anticipation for the eschatological age, a day of judgment, for both angels and human.[16]

            Most of these ideas are later attested to in the Instruction of the Two Spirits, in the War Rule, the Hodayot, 11QMelchizedek and to a lesser degree in the Damascus Document.[17] The notion that the forces of evil are intrinsic to the world is the most basic pre-supposition of the sectarian worldview. Since the Enochic document were found in the caves at Qumran, and since many of their basic ideas were adopted and developed in the Qumranic writings,[18] it is likely that the Qumranites inherited their perception of cosmic tension and eschatology from the Enochic circles. 

            However, these Enochic circles did not form a sectarian organization. Sectarianism is not only a perception, but in fact a mode of social behavior. Interestingly, none of the documents of 1 Enoch (with the possible exception of the Astronomical Book) instructs certain social observance or religious restrictions. There is no call for separation or seclusion, and no reference to any social institution whatsoever. 1 Enoch is mainly occupied with myth (that is, a theoretical world-view), not with practice. 

            The social character of the Enochic movements is implicit in the Animal Apocalypse, the Apocalypse of Weeks and the Epistle of Enoch (which are later than the Astronomical Book and Book of Watchers). In the Animal Apocalypse (1 Enoch 85-90), the author’s group is symbolized by the lambs that opened their eyes. These lambs cried out to the blind sheep, but the sheep did not listen (90:6-7). A great horn sprouted on one of those sheep (now becoming a ram), and it looked at them, and their eyes were opened, and it cried out to the (other) sheep, and the rams (sic!) saw it, and they all ran to it” (90:9b-10). The fact that later on the sheep and ram clashed with the ravens and other birds (that is with the Seleucids and other gentiles) led most interpreters to identify the ram with Judas Maccabeus.[19]

            However, as M. Kister already argued, this does not cohere with the lack of internal strife within the sheep, and especially with the fact that the ram is a religious or spiritual leader who opens the eyes of the rest of the sheep.[20] I would add that the lambs that first opened the eyes before the emergence of the ram are not introduced as a sect, but as a reform movement that aimed to awaken the whole Jewish nation. Moreover, the horned ram experienced an angelic revelation and is definitely a religious leader (although it would be hazardous to identify him wit the Teacher of Righteousness). It shares one major ideological trait with the yahad and the Damascus Covenant, in claiming that the bread (sacrifices) served on the table (altar) of the tower “was polluted and not pure” (89:72b). It also adheres to strong eschatological tension. The lambs, however, cannot be portrayed as a sect, but as a reform movement. A reform movement is, according to Bryan Wilson, a group that “recognizes the evil but assumes that it may be dealt with according to supernaturally-given insights about the way in which social organization should be amended”, that is, changing the world by the force of persuasion instead of deserting it, and without involving supernatural agencies.[21]   

            Similar conclusions should be drawn regarding the group represented in the Apocalypse of Weeks (1 Enoch 91-93).[22] In the seventh week, “there will arise a perverse generation, and many will be it deeds … And at its conclusion, the chosen will be chosen, as witnesses of righteousness from the eternal plant of righteousness, to whom will be given sevenfold wisdom and knowledge”[23] (93:8-10). At this point, the transition into the eschatological age occurs.[24] “They will uproot the foundations of violence, and the structure of deceit in it, to execute judgment” (91:11). The social tension of the chosen righteous with their Jewish and non-Jewish enemies is extremely high. There is concealed stress between the emerging “eternal plant of righteousness” and the old regime. The author is not necessarily an advocate of the Maccabees or traditional conservative Judaism which resists the Hellenistic reform.[25] Nonetheless, the authors’ group do not regard themselves as separated from the rest of Israel.[26] The author also does not regard the “eternal plant of righteousness” as a sect, but again, as a reform movement that will lead Israel to the end of days. Nonetheless, this movement is about to bring salvation to all Israel.

            Social tension within the Jewish society is also attested to in the Epistle of Enoch (92-105)[27]. Enoch calls upon his sons to love righteousness and walk in it, although “certain men in a generation” will follow the path of violence (e.g., 94:1-4). The author speaks against the evil sinners and the rich and foresees their judgment and destruction (91:5-11; 95:3), ensuring the righteous and wise will be rewarded at the end of days (e.g., 104:1-2), and that they will eventually defeat the sinners.[28] There are also references to more specific religious debates about law and religious authority, about covenant, words of the wise, the commandment of the most high, the words of truth, writing books, and mysteries.[29]

            The author is interested in convincing others of his truth and is confident that the wise will acknowledge his truth and that all sons of earth will eventually “contemplate these words of the epistle”.[30] The fact that the author appeals directly to the sinners (99:10-16; 101) indicates, according to Nickelsburg, a certain openness towards the outsiders.[31] Nickelsburg concludes that the author of the Epistle “speaks for a group of Jews who make exclusive claims for their interpretation of the Torah and who perceive as revealed wisdom the belief that the imminent judgment will separate from those whose interpretation of the Law differs from theirs, as well as from the violent rich who oppress them. These exclusive claims notwithstanding, this is not a closed group who simply gather to comfort one another and to hurl curses at their enemies and opponents. The wise speak where they can be heard, and they testify to the truth in the hope that their message will be heeded and met with repentance”.[32] In other words, this is another example of a reform movement, not a separated sect.

            These two Enochic apocalypses (and to a certain extent also the Epistle), usually dated to the beginning of the Maccabean War, testify to a movement that shares with the latter Qumranites views of cosmic and social tension, as well as the belief that the eschaton is immediate and that the movement and its special religious wisdom will lead Israel into the age of salvation. They also share with the Qumranites certain criticism of the Temple cult (perhaps the fact that the Second Temple is not mentioned in the Apocalypse of Weeks  is not accidental, cf. 1 Enoch 93:9). Other more general common theological themes (that cannot be discussed here at length) are moral impurity, revelation, and an activist struggle with the evil forces, both human and angelic, later developed in the War Rule. However, unlike the Qumran sects, the movement(s) behind these apocalypses did not call for withdrawal from the rest of the Jews, but was aimed at political activity and to lead Israel in the imminent and final struggle. All this shows, I think, that the Aramaic documents in 1 Enoch paved the way for some of the major ideological traits of the Qumran sects.


Jubilees and the Pre-Sectarian Legal System

Like 1 Enoch, Jubilees share the classification into just and evil angels, as well as the anticipation of the Day of Judgment.[33] Jubilees is familiar with the Book of Watchers,[34] the Astronomical Book[35]. It is even possible that Jubilees is familiar with Enoch’s apocalypses or Epistle, since Jub. 4:18-19 refers to Enoch’s documentation of history un visions of the future until the day of Judgment.[36] In Jubilees, however, the cosmic dualism is augmented by a social dualism of Israel vs. the gentiles. The gentiles are ruled by angels who misguide them, and particularly by the angel Mastema.[37] [[Jubilees pays special attention to the iniquities of the gentiles and to the problem of the Israelites’ relationship with them. According to Jubilees, the gentiles are impure and so are their idols.]][38]  Jubilees calls for a complete separation from the gentiles. All Jewish-Gentile interaction is to be shunned, especially intermarriage, since contact with them would defile the holy essence of Israel.[39] Violation of the law of circumcision and the interdiction to marry a gentile lead to a removal from the covenant with God.[40]

Jubilees’ call for complete severance of the relationship between Israel and the gentiles is also evident in its resistance to the foreign practice of nudity[41] as well as the neglect of the Jewish ethnic mark of circumcision.[42] These two points are significant since they provide a specific chronological framework for Jubilees, a framework that is generally lacking in 1 Enoch and most of the Qumranic writings. The breaking of the taboos of nudity is implied in 2 Maccabees, during the Hellenistic reform in Jerusalem, in the athletic performance at the gymnasium.[43]  The failure to circumcise is attested to in 1 Maccabees, The only known cases when Jews failed to circumcise themselves during the Second Temple period are during the Hellenistic reform of 175 BCE and the decrees of Antiochus IV (167-164 BCE). I Mac 1:15 argues that the Jewish Hellenistic reformers who built the gymnasium “underwent operations to disguise their circumcision”.[44] A few years later, Antiochus IV decreed that circumcision is prohibited and would be punished by death. When Mattathias and his followers ran away to the mountains and established their resistance, they forcefully circumcised the boys they have found, hence some of the Jews had observe the Antiochus decree.[45] It is most probable that Jubilees’ protest is a reaction to some of these events.

Dating Jubilees to the Maccabean revolt also coheres with the abomination of the Gentiles. It should be noted that Jubilees’ treatment of the relationship with the gentiles, nudity and circumcision reflects a debate within the Jewish society on the sovereignty of Jewish culture. Jubilees was therefore written when Jewish religious identity was threatened.[46] I think that this cultural trait does not fit into the slightly later period the Hasmonean period, when the Jews cooperated with some Seleucids against other Seleucids, and the struggle with the gentiles was not involved merely with the survival of Judaism in the gentile world, but also with military and political expansion.  

Unlike 1 Enoch, Jubilees introduces not only religious ideas, but also modes of behavior or a legal system. It demands several capital punishments,[47] polemisizes with the lunar calendar in order to promote the Enochic 364-day calendar,[48] and even conceals criticism against the current Temple cult: In 23:21 the wicked party, who acts is indulged in cheating and other moral sins, and also denies the correct calendar, is accused of defiling the “holy of holies” with the impure corruption of their contamination. In fact, Jubilees has a special concern for sacrifices, since almost every patriarch is depicted as sacrificing for God.[49] Moreover, Jubilees incorporates in its narrative several laws that concern sacrifices and priestly dues, also attested to in the Temple Scroll and MMT, most of which are opposed to the pharisaic or rabbinic halakhah.[50] For Jubilees, it should be emphasized, atonement is a major issue,[51] and the Temple and its cult are the initial means of accomplishing it. There are even several references to the new ideal Temple, which will be built in the time of the New Creation.[52] In the eschatological age all the transgressions criticized by the author will be eliminated. This would be an age of purity when God “will create a holy spirit” for the people of Israel and will purify them forever, an idea that recalls the main theme in 11QMelchizedek.[53]

Jubilees thus has several general perceptions in common with the Qumranites: cosmic dualism, calendar, and views and laws concerning the Temple cult. However, there are also more particular ideas that may point to Qumranic dependence on or continuity of Jubilees’ heritage. Jubilees 22:14 shares the association of atonement with purification with and the Community Rule, the Hodayot and additional liturgies of ablution.[54] Jubilees views the people of Israel as being as holy as the angels in heaven, quite like the self-portrayal of the Qumranites as associating with angles or as being equal to angels.[55] The discussion of a new and eternal Temple at the time of the new creation (4:26; cf. also 1:17) explains the crux of the reference in the Temple Scroll 29:9-10.[56] In both cases purity, atonement and sanctity are associated with the ideal Temple.

In fact, a comparison of the two versions of this tradition may lead to the conclusion that in this case the Temple Scroll is dependent on Jubilees. In the Temple Scroll 29:8-10 God promises “I shall sanctify my [Te]mple with my glory, for I shall make my glory reside over it until the day of creation, when I shall create my Temple, establishing it for myself for all days, according to the covenant which I made with Jacob in Bethel”. But the Temple Scroll does not even try to explain what “the covenant in Bethel” has to do with the eschatological and eternal Temple. This matter is elucidated in light of Jub. 32, where Jacob inaugurated Levi to priesthood in Bethel. In his vision, Jacob is handed seven tablets (Jub. 32:31, presumably containing sacrificial laws that may be identified with the Temple Scroll’s reference to Jacob’s covenant). Jacob is then commanded not to build an eternal Temple in Bethel (ibid. 32).  Hence, it seems that the Temple Scroll is actually dependent on another tradition in Jubilees and introduces its idea in an abridged form.

The character of the group behind the Book of Jubilees is exposed only in one passage in Jub. 23:16-29, the so-called “Jubilees Apocalypse”. The author condemns “that evil generation” in transgressing “the law and the covenant”,  “commandment, ordinance and every verdict”, and particularly the calendar, (“festival, month, Sabbath, jubilee”), but also moral issues (“injustice, cheating and wealth”). The Israelites will be punished by internal strife and the oppression of the gentiles. The subsequent salvation will be due to the emergence of a new and just generation: “In those days the children will begin to study the laws, to seek out commands, and to return to the right way… They will complete and live their entire lifetimes peacefully and joyfully. There will be no neither a satan nor any evil one who will destroy, for their entire lifetime will be times of blessing and healing” (23:26-29).    

I do not think that the conflict in Jub. 23 is related to the Jewish Hellenizers and the Maccabees. There are no references to the association with gentiles and intermarriage, that occupy Jubilees in so many other instances. Moreover, the children are a group that challenges the traditional mainstream elite, quite like the young lambs of the animal apocalypse of 1 En 90, as already shown by Kister.[57] Jubilees’ group, “the children” is a religious revival movement. But it is not a sect. It is portrayed as the true Israel, but without claiming that the elders will be cut off. No matter how sinful the elders are, the author does not regard them as doomed. I think that the authors implies that they will accept the teaching of the young ones. The unity of the Jewish people is preserved in times of punishment and rewards. The us-and-them division does exist, but is relatively limited. The misdeeds of the elders cause the punishment of the whole nation, including the young ones, while the enlightenment of the latter also effect the larger society, bringing eternal salvation. Thus, he does not see his group as separated from the rest of Israel but as a religious pioneering movement that faces opposition in its beginning. Although traces of the ‘language of separation” can be found in Jubilees (impurity, sin, etc.), there is no call for social withdrawal, but a strong sense of reconciliation of all Israel as set against the gentiles.[58]

 The background for the emergence of “the children” may provide hints concerning its date. Their victory is envisioned only after a national collective age of punishment, probably caused by the transgressions and iniquities of the elders. The dramatic descriptions of sword, captivity, plundering and death caused by the cruel nations probably allude to the decrees of Antiochus IV and the consequent Maccabean wars. Interestingly, Jubilees portrays the young ones as emerging before that age of great distress and foresees its triumph after it. The author probably does not know how the war with the nations ends,[59] and he is unaware of the Hasmonean independence, when movements like Jubilees’ met disappointment.

Until now I have concluded that Jubilees introduces a reform movement that held many of the ideas found in Qumran, and that although it had criticized the religious situation in contemporary mainstream Judaism, it lacked a sectarian worldview of social separation. Nonetheless, consider a situation when Jubilees’ doctrine of religious reform is rejected by the Jewish leadership and most of the Jewish society, and the anticipation for reform led by the “children” is not accomplished. I think that an appreciation of Jubilees belief system leads to the conclusion that under such circumstances Jubilees’ movement would withdraw and become a sect.

In matters of cultic laws, calendar and eschatology, the document which Jubilees resembles most is the Temple Scroll, although the genre and purpose of the two sources are very different. However, I would like to show the close ideological relationship between Jubilees 23 and section C in MMT. In the homiletic section of MMT, the authors argue “we have separated ourselves from the multitude of the people [and from all their impurity]” (C 7–8). This impurity is probably moral, since the fragmentary continuation of this passage relates to moral sins: “and concerning … [the malice] and the treachery … and fornication [some] places were destroyed”…. “no] treachery or deceit or evil can be found in our hand” (C 4–6, 8–9). Similar accusations are ascribed to the “evil generation” in Jub. 23:14: (moral) impurity and contamination, sexual impurity (which parallels MMT’s fornication) and detestable actions (which parallels MMT’s malice, treachery and deceit). Further on, similar accusations are addressed to “the elders”: “they have acted wickedly… everything they do is impure.. all their way are contamination” (23:17) “cheating through wealth…”they will defile the holy of holies with the impure corruption of their contamination” (23:21).  

The notion of moral impurity is common to this section of MMT and the entire Book of Jubilees (in the latter its main focus is the impurity of the gentiles). In both cases there is also no mention of cooperation with the gentiles, although theoretically this may serve as an adequate explanation for such a conflict in the early Hasmonean period. Another possible parallel between the two texts is the physical threats on Jewish society: MMT’s refers to “[some] places were destroyed”, probably relating to a punishment following the sins of “[the malice] and the treachery … and fornication” (C 4-6). Jub. 23:22-25 describes the dire consequences of the “elders” transgressions and impure ways (sword, judgment and captivity). The association of the biblical motif of sin and punishment as a consequence of similar moral impurities seems more than a coincidence.   

            Last but mot least, both MMT and Jubilees contain eschatological expectations. The authors of MMT declare: “And we are aware that part of the blessings and curses have occurred that are written in the b[ook of Mos]es. And this is the End of Days, when they will return in Israel to the L[aw…]and not turn bac[k] and the wicked will act wickedly…” (C 20-22). Jub. 23:26-31 envisions that, after the punishment from the nations, the “children” will take over, returning to the right way of the laws and commands and an age of great peace, praise and happiness will arrive. In both cases there is hope for religious reform that will lead to salvation. MMT’s biblical concept of curses and blessings (cf. Lev. 26; Deut. 28) probably refers to the past wars destruction (probably during the Maccabean revolt) and the swift transition to the messianic age, just like the sudden shift in Jubilees from disaster to deliverance. Of course, in MMT the sense of salvation is more imminent. The “end of days” is no more a matter of expectation, but a fact. This difference can be explained not only in light of the special rhetoric aim of MMT (persuading the addressee to act on the authors’ part), but by the assumption that a few years had separated the writing of Jubilees and MMT; meanwhile messianic expectations were intensified and perhaps cultivated by the relative political relief, where clashes between the Seleucids and the Maccabees headed by Jonathan ceased after 158 BCE (1 Mac 9:70-73).

            I think that these affinities show that there were close chronological and social links between Jubilees and MMT. One should also bear in mind that both documents have many common features with the Temple Scroll. Simply put, I suggest that MMT was written by the members of the Jubilees’ group or its descendants, and reflects a slight development of Jubilees ideology. Hence, according to the proposed historical background of Jubilees around 160 BCE, MMT is only slightly later than the period of the Maccabeen revolt, and this accords with Qimron’s and Eshel’s presumption that it was sent to the Wicked Priest, identified with Jonathan.[60] A more complicated problem, however, is how to incorporate the Temple Scroll into this scheme.[61] The sections that resemble Jubilees and MMT (the sacrificial laws and the calendar) may be contemporary to either Jubilees or MMT, or rather, somewhere in between them, in the early 150’s, the period in which there is a vacuum in our knowledge concerning the high priesthood and the Temple.


The relationship between the yahad and the Damascus Covenant.

I have already discussed this issue in my article on the structure and organization of these two branches in Revue de Qumran 2003.[62] I have found several functional indications for the primacy of the yahad upon the Damascus Covenant. One of them was that the yahad was called “rabbim” whereas the Covenant character from rabbim to “camps” (mahanot), probably developed gradually from the yahad. I have also noted the fact that the penal code in the Damascus Document does not cohere with the role of private property in its social system, and that the copies of the Community Rule from cave 4 are older than those of the Damascus Document.

            Here I would like to add another point in support of my general conclusion, which relates to the different concepts of revelations in these groups. For the yahad, revelation is a present and dynamic phenomenon, which may happen to any member anytime. However, in the Damascus Document revelation is a past phenomenon (CD 3: 13-14; 5:4-5), which lay at its foundation, but it had no trace in the regulations of the sect and has no active role in the lives of the members. The Teacher of Righteousness had revelations, and I think that this was the reason he was followed and was able to create a new movement. I therefore suggest that the yahad’s concept of  revelations aim to continue those of the Teacher, while the Damascus Document reflects a latter “routinization of Charisma”, that also suited a larger movement.  Of course, this theory inspired by socio-anthropological studies on revelations deserves more elaboration than is possible here.


The Essenes as a Later Development of the Qumran Movement

The Essenes were undoubtedly a sect, separated from the outside society by many restrictions and taboos. From the earliest days of the study of the scrolls, the identification of the “Qumran community” with the Essenes was regarded as a consensus. However, reflecting on previous research, it is unclear whether the Essenes are simply identical to the yahad or the Damascus Document,[63] are the forefathers of the Damascus Covenant or the yahad,[64] or perhaps the Qumranic groups are only a part of the larger Essene movement.[65]  There is, of another possibility, that is, that there is no relationship whatsoever between Qumran and the Essenes.[66]

            A sweeping identification of the Essenes with the Qumran movement is difficult for two general reasons. First, almost all of our knowledge of the Essene way of life probably reflects the days of Philo and Josephs, the mid first century, that is, C.E., 150-200 years later than the major documents from Qumran. Second, Philo and Josephus testify to 4000 Essenes in Judaea, as well as in the cities,[67] and consistently argue that the Essens hold common property. However, it is obvious that the yahad is a very small group that all of whose members meet frequently, and probably live in social isolation;[68] the Damascus Covenant, on the other hand, is probably larger and perhaps also urban, but unlike all the ancient reports on the Essenes, the Damascus Covenant does not have common property.[69]

            Moreover, it seems to be impossible to argue that the Essenes were the forefathers of the either the yahad or the Damascus Covenant, that is (as Stegemann and Garcia-Martinez argued), that the Essenes acted during the Maccabean revolt or even before it. The examination of 1 Enoch and Jubilees have shown that these were the groups or movements from which many of the later Qumranic ideas emerged, but nonetheless they were not sects in the full sense of the term. A comparison of 1 Enoch and Jubilees with the Essenes as portrayed by Philo Josephus and Pliny will result in very general similarities and numerous and fundamental dissimilarities. The Essenes are not identical with 1 Enoch and Jubilees, and seem quite remote from them in terms of social outlook.

The similarities between the Essenes on the one hand and the yahad or the Damascus Covenant on the other hand in terms of belief, and especially in terms of practices and ritual are numerous: common property, tension in relation to the Temple, morality, self-restraint, companionship, gradual admission, purity and avoidance of oil, and prayer.[70] However, in many of these issues a certain degree of difference is concealed. Such as in the case of the seclusion of defecation: in their limitation on the discharge of excretion, the Essenes dig a hole with their personal shovel, whereas the Temple Scroll and the War Rule order the building of permanent latrines.[71] There are also several quite striking parallels: interdictions on spitting in the midst of the assembly, on moving any vessel during the Sabbath, on preparation in the course of the Sabbath;[72] The roll of the priests in the preparation of bread, [73] and the priestly prayer/blessing before the meal,[74] and the exclusion of the novice from common meals and purifications.[75]

Interestingly, these parallels relate to both the Community Rule and the Damascus Document. Moreover the Essenes combine conflicting characteristics of both Qumran branches. Philo’ Essenes live in the villages and avoid the cities because of the urban iniquities,[76] like the yahad in the desert. Josephus’ Essenes live in the cities,[77] probably like many of the Damascus Covenanters. Philo says that they “served God not with Sacrifices of animal, but by resolving to the sanctity of their minds”; quite similarly the yahad claimed for prayers and moral behavior as substitute for sacrifices.[78] In the Damascus Document, a withdrawal from the moral impurity of the Temple’s treasury and dedication is found side by side with conveying offerings by morally pure messenger.[79] This may be paralleled to Josephus’ assertion that the Essenes were barred from the Temple and made their sacrifices by themselves, but nonetheless sent offerings to the Temple.[80] 

Some discrepancies may be erroneously considered as “minor”. The Essene abstinence from taking oaths, for example, is not attested to in the scrolls. Moreover, it does not cohere with the regulations of taking oaths in front of the judges in cases of lost property (CD 9:8-12), and with the use of vows as a normative and even frequent practice in CD 16:1-7.[81] The Essene avoidance of slaves also does not correspond with the findings from Qumran. CD  11:12 prohibits “pressing” one’s servant or maidservant (to work) on the Sabbath. In the Community Rule there is no mention of servants, and one might assume that both the Essenes and the yahad did not hold slaves since they maintained common property that regards all members as equal. However, recently discovered ostraca from kh. Qumran mention the delivery of a slave named Hisdai from Holon from one person to another (possibly to the yahad’s official) along with agricultural products, and may attest to the dwellers’ readiness to accept such slaves as property.[82] Such dissimilarities may be seen as marginal or explained in different ways, but they are too numerous to be overlooked. A sect that poses a boundary or rule (discharge of excretion, abstaining form taking oath and possessing slaves, and there are other examples) define it as an issue that shapes its identity vis-á-vis the world. It is not reasonable that it would be flexible and permissive in observing it.     

            Almost all scholars believe that like most of the Essenes, the yahad members were celibates. This conclusion, however, cannot be proved and is based on the preliminary assumption that already identifies the Essenes with the “Qumran community”.[83] Actually, it may be refuted if one does not take for granted that the Essenes were identical to the yahad. Nowhere in the Community Rule nor in any other document from Qumran is there any reference to celibacy or an exclusion of women from social life. Such a ruling is extremely extraordinary and strict, that one cannot deduce it from the silence of the Community Rule regarding women and family life. Moreover, husband and wife, girls and old women are mentioned in 4Q502 (called by Balliet “ritual of marriage”), where the yahad is mentioned several times and a passage from the Community Rule is cited.[84] A fuller consideration of the possibility that the yahad contained women and families cannot be taken here. For the present purpose, it is suffice to acknowledge that celibacy cannot be viewed as another parallel between the Qumran movement and the Essenes.

            A notable difference between the Essenes and the Qumranites is related to the Essene involvement in public affairs, and mostly in public prophecies concerning Jewish rulers. Josephus notes that some Essenes profess to foreknowing the future, being versed in holy books, various forms of purification and the words of the prophets.[85] Josephus also mentions three cases of Essene prophecies that were not concealed but are made in public. Judas predicated that Antigonus the Hasmonean will be killed at Strato’s Tower (War 1:78-80; in Ant. 13:311-313) Josephus adds that Judas was accompanied by friends who were learning how to prophesize from him. Menahem predicted, when Herod was still young, that he would be the king of the Jews, and later on, when Herod ruled, he predicted that he would reign for twenty or thirty more years, but refused to be specific (Ant. 15:371-379). Simon correctly interpreted Archelaus’ dream, and foreseen that his reign would soon come to an end (War 2:312-313; Ant. 17:345-348). [[In all these instances Josephus emphasizes the accurateness of the Essene foreseeing.]] In addition, during the Great revolt John the Essene held a public position, as the general of Thmana, Lydda, Joppa and Emmaus.[86]

            I find it quite puzzling that distinguished members of a sect that was separated from normal social life, restricted its connections with other Jews, and specialized in a secret knowledge of foreseeing the future were interested in such a public performance of prophecy and initiated these contacts with the larger society. It seems to me that the purpose of these prophecies was to win public attention and admiration. One should bear in mind that predictions that were regarded as liable had incredible influence on the governing authorities and probably also on the masses, and seemed to be considered as being able to change future events. For example, when Jesus son of Hannania already mourned the destruction of Jerusalem already in 62 CE, he was arrested and flogged by the Roman governor Albinus.[87] There are many cases in which Roman authorities, rulers and emperors were very concerned by such prophecies.[88]

            I therefore suggest that in these prophecies as well as in John’s role in the military leadership in the Great Revolt, the Essenes strived for political recognition and the acquisition of social power. The Essenes’ concern to the wider society, their large number, and the special attention paid to them by Josephus, Philo and Pliny the Elder, all point to a movement that was socially more significant than either the yahad or the Damascus Covenant. The Essenes cannot be identical with these Qumranic sects, but still have a lot in common with them. Many of the regulations of both the yahad or the Damascus Covenant are present in the descriptions of the Essenes, although with considerable differences and alternations. Thus, I suggest that the Essenes were a branch that developed from both the yahad and the Damascus Covenant, and became larger and more successful than its precursors. If this was indeed the case, the yahad and the Damascus Covenant established a firm foundation for the subsequent development of a unique and rich religious culture and social system.  


[1] B. Wilson, “An Analysis of Sect Development” American Sociological Review 24 (1959), pp. 3-15; R. Stark and W.S. Bainbridge, The Future of Religion: Secularization, Revival and Cult Formation, (Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1985), pp. 25, 102-104, 134-167; Niebuhr, H.R. The Social Sources of Denominationalism (New York: Henry Holt, 1929).

[2] M. Bloch, “The Ido of Origins”, The Historian’s Craft trans. by P. Putnam. (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1954), pp. 29-35. Bloch has observed that “origins” means both “beginnings” and “causes”. My discussion concern the first one, although the framework of sectarianism also implies the causes of the historical developments, which should be treated elsewhere.

[3] Stark and Bainbridge The Future of Religion, 49-60. The importance of separation for defining a sect was already noted by Wilson “An Analysis of Sect Development”, 4.

[4] The influential theories of F.M. Cross, and J. Murphy-O’Connor, among others, were critically surveyed in: P.R. Davies, “The Prehistory of the Qumran Community”, in D. Dimant and U. Rappaport (eds.) The Dead Sea Scrolls, Forty Years of Research, (Leiden: Brill, 1992), pp. 116-125; F. Garcia-Martinez, and J. Trebolle Barrera, The People of the Dead Sea Scrolls, (trans. by W.G.E. Watson, Leiden: Brill, 1995), pp. 77-96; J.J. Collins, “The Origins of the Qumran Community: A Review of the Evidence”, in M. Horgan and P. Kobelski (eds.), To Touch the Text: Biblical and Related Studies in Honor of Joseph A. Fitzmyer, (New York: Crossroad, 1989), pp. 159-178.

[5] A. Dupont-Sommer, The Essene Writings from Qumran, (trans. G. Vermes; Cleveland and New York: World Publishing Company, 1962), esp. pp. 66-67; G. Vermes, The Dead Sea Scrolls, Qumran in Perspective (revised edition; London: SCM Press, 1994), esp. pp. 115-117; H. Stegeman, “The Qumran Essenes - Local Members of the Main Jewish Union in Late Temple Times”, in J. Trebolle Barrera, and  L. Vegas Montaner (eds). The Madrid Qumran Congress, (Leiden: Brill, 1992), vol. I, pp. 83-166.

[6] In addition to the studies cited in n. 4, see also P.R. Davies, “Redaction and Sectarianism in the Qumran Scrolls”, Sects and Scrolls (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1996) 151-161.

[7] C. Hempel, “Community Origins in the Damascus Document in the Light of Recent Scholarship”, in D. Parry and E. Ulich (eds.), The Provo International Conference of the Dead Sea Scrolls (Leiden: Brill, 1999), pp. 316-329; M.L. Grossman, Reading for History in the Damascus Document, (Leiden: Brill, 2002).

[8] G. Boccaccini, Beyond the Essene Hypothesis: The Parting of the Ways between Qumran and Enochic Judaism (Grand Rapids and Cambridge: Eerdmans, 1998). See already R.T. Beckwith. “The Earliest Enoch Literature and its Calendar: Marks of their Origin, Date and Motivation” RQ 10.3 (1981), pp. 365-403; P.R. Davies, “A Comparison of Three Essene Sects”, Behind the Essenes, (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1987) 107-134.

[9] Boccaccini, Beyond the Essene Hypothesis 165-185. He concludes that “Mainstream Enochic literature offers a much better setting for the ideology of mainstream Essene movement…than the sectarian literature of Qumran (ibid., 178).

[10] Ibid., pp. 21-49.

[11] For the Aramaic fragments and their dates, see J.T. Milik, The Books of Enoch (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1976). For the ideological unity of 1 En. see G.W.E. Nickelsburg, “The Apocalyptic Construction of Reality in 1 Enoch”, in J.J. Collins and J.H. Charlseworth (eds.), Mysteries and Revelations (Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1991), pp. 51-64. See also En 1.2-7; 5.4-9. 1 Enoch’s mythic content is vast and cannot introduced here in detail. The following discussion is confined to selected themes and general characteristics.

[12] 1 Enoch 1:10; 5:4-9

[13] 1 Enoch 80:2-8 (see also 100:10-101:9).

[14] 1 Enoch 10; 90:21-22; 100:4-5.

[15] Cf. the ascension of Enoch in chapters 14-19. See also 18:14; 21:10; 22; 25-27.

[16] For the Book of Watchers, see 18:16; 19:1; 22:4, 11; 25:4; 27:3. For the Animal Apocalypse see 90:20-38.

[17] See M.J. Davidson, Angels at Qumran: A Comparative Study of 1 Enoch 1-36, 72-108 and Sectarian Writings from Qumran (JSPSup 11, Sheffiled: JSOT Press, 1992) pp. 142-323. Davidson also discussed the connection between the Book of Watchers and the Songs of Sabbath Sacrifices, etc.

[18] Milik, The Books of Enoch; Davidson, Angels at Qumran.

[19] J.J. Collins, The Apocalyptic Imagination. An Introduction to Jewish Apocalyptic Literature, (second edition, Grand Rapids and Cambridge: Eerdmans, 1998) p. 69; P.A. Tiller, A Commentary on the Animal Apocalypse of I Enoch, Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1993) pp. 62-63, 78, 355-357 and bibliogarphy.

[20] M. Kister, “Concerning the History of the Essenes”, Tarbiz 56 (1986), pp. 2-5 (Hebrew).

[21] B. Wilson, Magic and the Millennium: A Sociological study of Religious Movements of Protest Among Tribal and Third-World Peoples, London: Heinemann, 1973), 25, defining the reformist response to the world. Wilson overstated the role of divine revelation or inspiration (the Pharisees were a reformist group but did not argue for such revelations), but in the case of Enoch, where angelic revelation is the governing paradigm, he is correct.

[22] Its correct sequence is: 91:1-10, 18-19; 92:1-93:10; 91:11-17; 93:11-14. See Milik, The Books of Enocg, pp. 263-272 (following the Aramaic fragments); G.W.E. Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1 (Hermenia, Minneapolis: Fortress, 2001) pp. 414-415 and bibliography.

[23] The Ethiopic version is confirmed by the Aramaic fragment (Milik, The Books of Enoch, p. 265): é]úáçøåï [áçéøé]ï ìùäãé ÷ùè îï ð[öáú] ÷ùè òì[î]à ãé ùáòä ô[òîé]ï çëîä åîãò úúéä[á ìäåï]. Nickelsburg 1 Enoch 1, p. 448 interpreted the wisdom and knowledge in the context of the Epistle of Enoch as “a particular understanding of the divine law, other esoteric information about the cosmos, and the eschatological message of the coming judgment”. 

[24] J.C. VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition, (CBQMS 16, Washington: Catholic Biblical Association of America, 1984)  147, 149.

[25] In contrast to the common view of most interpreters. See J.C. VanderKam, Enoch and the Growth of an Apocalyptic Tradition (CBQMS 16, Washington: Catholic Biblical Association of America, 1984) pp. 145-149, and bibliography. Some identified the sword of the eighth week with the Maccabean uprising. VanderKam believes that it is part of the eschatological description and dates the apocalypse to the period before the decrees of Antiochus IV (167 BCE), identifying the “perverse generation” with the hellenizing segment. 

[26] Boccaccini, Beyond the Essene Hypothesis, p. 108.

[27] The original extent of the Epistle is debated. I have followed the more common view in which chaps. 92-105 contain one literary unit. The Aramaic fragments contain chap. 104.  See Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, pp. 2, 336-337, 426. Nickelsburg recognized that the Epistle contains older traditions (especially the Apocalypse of Weeks) but regards it as the craft of a single author. Boccaccini Beyond the Essene Hypothesis, pp. 110-112, 131-138 argued that 1 Enoch 94:6-104:6 is a later interpolation. For discussion of the oppositions between the righteous and sinners, the poor and the well to do, and the theme of the judgment day in the Epistle, see ibid., 94-103.  

[28] 95:3; 96:1; 98:12. This idea is presented in the Apocalypse of Weeks as imminent (91:12). For a survey of the social tensions see Nickelsburg, 1 Enoch 1, 426-427.

[29] 99:2; 99:10; 104:10-13. the author may be making reference to some kind of tendentious rewriting of the Torah – similar to the Temple Scroll and Jubilees – in which the errorist place in the mouth of God their own interpretation of the Torah, an exegesis that contradicts our author’s interpretation and is therefore the epitome of falsehood. See G.W.E. Nickelsburg, “The Epistle of Enoch and the Qumran Literature”, JJS 33 (1982), pp. 342. Nickelsburg (ibid, 343), associated these books with the wisdom that will be given to the elected in the seventh week in the Apocalypse of Weeks (93:10).

[30] 100:6; 105:1; cf. 99:10.

[31] Nickelsburg “The Epistle of Enoch”, p. 344.

[32] Nickelsburg ibid, pp. 344-345. Dating the Epistle is very problematic. See Nickelsburg 1 Enoch 1, 427-428 who maintained an early Hasmonean date. However, if its author is the one who composed the Apocalypse of Weeks, it may be dated to the Maccabean period (before the rise of the Hasmonean state).

[33] On angles, see D. Dimant,bnei shanyim – torat ha-mal’akhim beseferer ha-yovlim le’or kitvei a´dat qumran”, in M, Idel, D. Dimant, and S. Rosenberg (eds.), Tribute to Sara, Studies in Jewish Philosophy and Kabbala (Jerusalem, Magness, 1994), pp. 109-110; J.C. Vanderkam The Book of Jubilees (Sheffield; Sheffield Academic Press 2001), pp. 127-129. For the extermination of the wicked angels, see 5:10; 10:11. Cf. the times when there is no Satan in 23:29; 40:9; 50:5. On the eschatological New Creation, see 1:29; 5:12.

[34] Jubilees borrowed the account on the angels of God who mated with women and sired giants. See Jub. 4:22; 5:1-11; 7:21-27; 10:1-14.

[35] Jub 4:17-18. Cf. also 6:23-38.

[36] For Jubilees’ dependence on 1 Enoch see J.C. VanderKam,. “Enoch Traditions in Jubilees and Other Second-Century Sources’, SBL 1978 Seminar Papers, (Missoula: Scholars Press, 1978) pp. 229-51. VanderKam accounts for additional links between Jubilees and the Epistle of Enoch (e.g., Jub. 7:29 and 1 En. 103:7-8) and pointed to the inclusion of other Enochic sources in Jubilees, such as Enoch as a halakhic dispenser in Jub. 7:38-39; 21:10.

[37] 15:31-32; Dimant, “bnei shanyim”, pp. 108-109.

[38] 1:8-11; 11:16; 12:1-8, 12-14; 20:7-8; 21:3, 5; 22:18, 22; 31:1-2; 36:5; 48:5. See also the curse of the Philistines that will be abolished from the land at the day of judgment (24:28).

[39] 6:35; 9:14-15; 22:16; 25:1; 30. 

[40] 15:34; 30:7-10, 15-16, 21-22. Jubilees 30 emphasizes the sin of intermarriage and its subsequent death penalty. On intermarriage as polluting the Temple, see 30:15. 

[41] 3:31; 7:20.

[42] 15:33-34. Jub 15:26 announces that anyone who is not circumcised on the eighth day does not belong to the people of God but to “the people (meant for) destruction”. 15:26 seem to refute the practice of postponing circumcision.

[43] Cf. J.C. VanderKam, Textual and Historical Studies in the Book of Jubilees (HSM 14., Missoula: Scholars Press, 1977) pp. 245-246; Collins, The Apocalyptic Imagination, p. 81. For the wrestling performances in the gymnasium, see 1 Mac; 2 Mac 4:12-15. For assumption that, like the Greek gymnasium, the games in the Jerusalem were performed in a state of nudity, see Goldstein I Maccabees (AB; Garden City: Doubleday, 1976), p. 200. Although Goldstein had doubted this elsewhere (II Maccabees [AB; Garden City: Doubleday, 1983], p. 230) because it is not mentioned in II Mac., it is supported by the reference to disguising the circumcision (see below). R. Doran, 1989. “The Non-Dating of Jubilees: Jub 34-38; 23:14-32 in Narrative Context”, JSJ 20 (1989) pp. 10-11 argues that Jub. 3:31 expresses the author’s concern for purity and proper sexual relationship, rather than a specific anti-gymnasium reference.

[44] 1 Mac 1:13-15 (translation following Goldstein, I Maccabees, p. 198); and cf. Ant. 12:241. The need for covering the foreskin derives from the shame of performing in a state of nudity before the gentiles. 

[45] I Mac 1:48, 60-61; 2:46.

[46] I do not think that later on the Hasmoneans were “Hellenized”, and therefore do not see the Hasmonean period as a background for such a debate on the part of Jubilees. For sensible appreciation of the Hasomean ideology and Helleism, See E.S. Gruen, “Hellenism and the Hasmoneans”, Heritage and Hellenism; Te Reinvention of Jewish Tradition (Berkley, Los Angeles and London: University of California Press, 1998), pp. 1-40.

[47] 2:26-27; 4:22; 20:4; 30:9; 33:13; 41:26.

[48] 6:23-32. Cf. 23:19. The traditional lunar calendar is associated with the gentiles, probably because the Greek and Hellenistic calendar was also lunar, and is considered as much less accurate the solar one, leading to the distortion of the correct dates of the festivals. Such a distortion actually means the desecration of the holy time, which Jubilees comprehends as the act of the causing of pollution to the sacred time. For the defilement of time (sabbath, festivals, calendar) see 2:25-26; 6:37.

[49] 3:27; 4:25; 6:1-3; 7:3-5; 13:4, 8, 16; 14:11; 16:20-24; 22:4; 24:23; 32:4-6. See also the sacrificial rulings in 20:7-17; 49:16-21. The priestly outlook is also indicated by the tradition in which Levi has a higher ranking than Judah (3:12-17). Sensitivity to the Sanctity of the Temple is expressed also in 1:10 49:21.

[50] For partial presentation of the evidence in relation to the festivals, see J.C. Vanderkam, “The Temple Scroll and the Book of Jubilees” in G.J. Brooke (ed.), Temple Scroll Studies, (JSP Sup 7, Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1989), pp. 211-236. Jub 7:4 orders that he-goat (s´eir) for atonement should be scarified first, as in the Temple Scroll (14:9-12; 23:10-13; 26:5-27-4), and in contrast to the plain text of Num 28-29 and rabbinic halakhah (cf. m. Zeb. 10:2; b. Zeb. 89b).  According to Jub. 32:15, the animal tithe is given to the priests, like in MMT B 63-64, whereas according to the rabbis (m. Zeb 5:8), the owners get it. Jub. 7:36 orders that the fruits of the fourth year should be given to for God’s servants (namely, the priests), as in the Temple Scroll and MMT, whereas the rabbis argued that it should be eaten by its owners (MMT B 62-63; Temple Scroll 60:3-4; 4Q266 2 ii 6 [DJD 18, 144-145]; m. Ma´aser Sheni 5:1-5; Sifrei Numbers 6 [ed. Horovits 6]; j. Peah. 7:6, 20b-20c). In Jub. 49:16, 20 the Passover sacrifice should be eaten in the Temple, quite like the Temple Scroll 17:8-9, whereas according to the rabbis it may be eaten throughout the city of Jerusalem (m. Zeb. 5.8). Similar limitation in Jub. 7:36 32:14 applies to the fruits of the forth year and the second tithe, also against the view of the rabbis (m. Zeb. ibid). Both Jubilees Jub 32:10-11 and the Temple Scroll 43:1-17 command to bring the second tithe to the Temple every year. Jubilees stress on the impurity of the gentiles is coined to specific cultic laws in MMT regarding refusing to accept sacrifices from gentiles, the exclusion of Ammonite and Moabite from the Temple, and perhaps also the prohibitions to bring the offering/tithe of the wheat and grain of the gentiles to the Temple (since they are defiled) and the intermarriage of priests with gentile women. See E. Regev, Abominated Temple and A Holy Community: The Formation of the concepts of Purity and Impurity in Qumran’ DSD 10.2 (2003), pp. 246-248. For the cosmological-philosophical preception which lies behind this cultic system see E. Regev, “On the Differences of Religious Outlook between Qumranic and Rabbinic Halakhah: Dynamic versus Static Sanctity” Tarbiz 72.1-2 (2002-03), 113-132, here 128-129 (Hebrew); idem, “Reconstructing Qumranic and Rabbinic World-Views: Dynamic Holiness vs. Static Holiness”, in S. Fraade and A. Shemesh, ed., Rabbinical Perspectives: Rabbinic Literature and the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Eighth International Symposium of the Orion Center (Leiden: Brill, [forthcoming]).

[51] 1:23-24; 5:17-18; 16:22; 22:14; 23:26-31; 34:8; 41:23-24. In 6:1-4 the atoning force of sacrifices is underlined. Note that Jubilees specified those sins that cannot be repented or atoned for - are marriage with gentiles and fornication with the father’s wife (30:10; 33:13).

[52]  Garden of Eden is described as a Temple in 8:19. Adam acts as a priest offering incense in 3:27. Eden must not be defiled as it were a sanctuary in 3:12. For a new ideal Temple with the new creation, see 1:27, 29; 4:25-26. See T.A.G.M. Van Ruiten, ”Visions of the Temple in the Book of Jubilees”, in B. Ego, A. Lange, and P. Pilhofer (eds.), Gemeinde ohne Tempel. Community without Temple (WUNT 118, Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1999), pp. 215-227. For the conclusion that God dwells only in Eden and the future Temple see ibid. 218.

[53] 1:23; 4:26; 50:5. On 11Qmelchizedek, see Davidson 1992, pp. 255-2s64 and bibliography.

[54] 1QS 3:6-12; 1QHa  9[Sukenik 1]:32; 12[4]:37; 4Q284, 4Q414, and 4Q512, discussed in J.M. Baumgarten, “The Purification Liturgies,” in J.C. VanderKam and P.W. Flint, (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls after Fifty Years (Leiden: Brill, 1999) 2.200–212.

[55] 2:17-18, 21. Cf. also 15:27. On Qumran, see: J.H. Charlesworth, “The Portrayal of the Righteous as an Angel”, in J.J. Collins and G.W. Nickelsburg (eds.), Ideal Figures in Ancient Judaism (Chico, CA: Scholars Press, 1980), pp. 135-151; D. Dimant, “Men as Angels: The Self-Image of the Qumran Community”, in A. Berlin (ed.), Religion and Politics in the Ancient Near East (Bethesda, MD: University Press of Maryland, 1996), pp. 93-103.

[56] Ed. Qimron 44. Cf. also the fragmentary reference to “the creation until the [new] creation” in 4Q225 Pseudo-Jubileesa 1 7.

[57] Kister, “Concerning The History of the Essenes”, pp. 6-7. Kister also thought that “the evil generation” (Jub. 23:14) is identical with the “perverse generation” in the Apocalypse of Weeks (1 En. 93:9).  

[58] For Jubilees as not reflecting any significant break with the larger national body” but an aim to return to the ‘normative’ position which it represents, see O.S. Wintermute, “Jubilees”, OTP 1985, pp. 44, 48. For Jubilees audience as the Jewish nation as a whole and its aim to lead to the conversion of Israel to the law, see Davies, Behind the Essenes, pp. 117; Boccaccini, Beyond the Essene Hypothesis, pp. 97-98. VanderKam, Textual and Historical Studies p. 281, concluded that “Jub.’s concern is still for the entire nation of Israel, and its author and his party are still part of the national community which centered on the Temple in Jerusalem.” He also regards Jub. 49:21 command that The Passover should be celebrated not “in their cities” but in the Temple as an indication for no withdrawal form the Temple: (ibid. pp. 281-282). Kister (“Concerning the History of the Essenes" p., I [English abstract]), however, defined the group behind Jub. 23 as” separatist, isolationist sect, similar to the Qumran sect”.

[59] Admittedly, the author may purposely avoid mention the Maccabees and their military and diplomatic achievements Cf. also Daniel’s lack appreciation to the Maccabees (11:34).

[60] E. Qimron and J. Strugnell, Qumran Cave 4.V: Miqs[at Ma(aśe Ha-Torah (DJD 10; Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1994), pp. 119–21; H. Eshel, “4QMMT and the History of the Hasmonean Period,” Reading 4QMMT: New Perspectives on Qumran Law and History (eds J. Kampen and M.J. Bernstein; SBLSymS 2; Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1996), 53–65. See also H. Stegemann, The Qumran Library (Leiden: Brill, 1998), pp. 104–6.

[61] Cf. the literary criticism of M.O. Wise, A Critical Study of the Temple Scroll From Qumran Cave 11 (Chicago: The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, 1990).

[62] E. Regev, The yahad and the Damascus Covenant: Structure, Organization and Relationship” Revue de Qumran 21.2 (2003), pp. 233-262.

[63] A. Dupont-Sommer,. Les écrits esséniens découverts prsès de la Mer Morte (Paris: Payot, 1959); G. Vermes,. The Dead Sea Scrolls, Qumran in Perspective (revised edition; London: SCM Press, 1994) pp. 114-115;

[64] Boccaccini, Beyond the Essene Hypothesis.

[65] E.P, Sanders, Judaism: Practice and Belief 63 BCE-66CE (Philadelphia, SCM Press,1992)  p. 345.

[66] A.I. Baumgarten, “The Rule of the Martian as Applied to Qumran”, Israel Oriental Studies 14 (1994), pp. 179-200; M. Goodman, “A Note on the Qumran Sectarians, the Essenes and Josephus” JJS 46 (1995), pp. 161-166; S. Talmonm “Qumran Studies: Past, Present, and Future, JQR 85, (1995), pp.  11-14, 17-18.

[67] Cities: Hypothetica 11:1, 8-10; War 2:124. More than 4000 Essenes: Philo Quod omnis probus liber sit (Every Good Man is Free) 75; Ant. 18:20.

[68] 1QS 6:8-23 (the meetings of the rabbim); 6:1-2; 8:12-15; 9:19-21 (withdrawal to the desert).

[69] See Hyp. 10:11; Quod omnis probus liber sit (“ Every Good Man is Free”, herein Quod.) 86; War 2.122; Ant.18: 20. Pliny argues that they have “no money”. See Pliny the Elder, Natural History V, 73. Compare CD 16:14-20; 9:9-15; 13:14-16; 14:12-17.

[70] T.S. Beal, Josephus’ Description of the Essenes Illustrated by the Dead Sea Scrolls (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988).

[71] A.I. Baumgarten, “The Temple Scroll, Toilet Practice, and the Essences”, Jewish History 10 (1996), pp. 9-20.

[72] J.M. Baumgarten, “The Disqualifications of  Priests in 4Q Fragments of the  "Damascus Document", a Specimen  of the Recovery of Pre Rabbinic Halakha”, in J. Trebolle Barrera and L. Vegas Montaner (eds.), The Madrid Qumran Congress (STDJ 11, Leiden: Brill, 1992) vol. 2, pp. 504-505.

[73] Ant. 18:22; 1QS 6:4-5, 20-21 .  

[74] War 2:131; 1QS 6:4-4.

[75] War 2:137-138, (after Beall 1988, 73-74); 1QS 6:13-23.

[76] War 2:124; Quod. 76, 78. Although it is possible that Pliny’s (Natural History V, 15, 73) mention of Essene near the Dead Sea is actually a mistaken reference to kh. Qumran, it is also possible that he heard on an Essene celibate community in this area.

[77] 1QS 8:13. Cities or towns (‘ir) are mentioned in CD 10:21 11:5-6 in relation to the limited walking distance on Sabbath, and CD 12:19 refers to the “rule for the assembly of the cities of Israel” namely, to the communities who dwell in the cities.

[78] Quod. 75; 1QS 9:4-5. According to the Damascus Document punishments function as atoning sacrifices (4QDa 11; 4QDe 7 I).

[79] CD 6:4-16; 11:18-20. Cf. P.R. Davies, Sects and Scrolls: Essays on Qumran and Related Topics (Atlanta: Scholars Press 1996), pp. 45-60.

[80] Ant. 18:19. Cf. A.I. Baumagrten, “Josephus on the Essenes Sacrifices”, JJS 35 (1994), pp. 169-184. Indeed, indirect Essene involvement in the Temple is attested to in Judas teaching near the Temple and the appointment of John by the public meeting at the Temple Mount (War 1:78; Ant. 13.311; War. 2:562-567; see Baumgarten, “The Rule of the Martian”, pp. 134-135).

[81] On oaths in the Damascus Document, see Schiffman, Law, Custom, and Messianism, 204-211, 220-227. Beall, Josephus’ Description, pp. 69-70 draws on the silence of the Community Rule in relation to oaths other then those of converts, for creating a false parallelism with Philo and Josephus, while resolving the evidence from the Damascus Document different stages of development.

[82] For the Essenes see Hyp. 11:4; Quod. 79; Ant. 18:21. For CD  11:12, see L.H. Schiffman, Law, Custom, and Messianism in the Dead Sea Scrolls (Jerusalem: Zalman Shazar, 1993) pp. 125-126 (see also Philo, Laws 2:66-68). For the ostraca, see F.M. Cross and E. Eshel, “Ostraca from Khirbet Qumran” IEJ 47 (1997), pp. 17-28. This conclusion is reasonable even if one rejects their reading of the yahad in line 5, suggesting that the ostraca attest to the acceptance of new member and his property into the yahad.

[83] R. De Vaux, Archaeology and the Dead Sea Scrolls (London: Oxford University Press,  1973) pp. 128-129; Stegemann, “The Qumran Essenes - Local Members”, p. 89; Sanders, Judaism: Practice and Belief, p. 344; Baumgarten, “Rule of the Matian” p. 133; C. Hempel,  “the Earthly Essene Nucleus of 1QSA”, DSD 3 (1996), pp. 266-274; G. Vermes “The Qumran Community, The Essenes, and Nascent Christianity”, in LH. Sciffman, E. Tov, and J.C. VanderKam (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls Fifty Years After Their Discovery. Proceedings of the Jerusalem Congress, July 20-25, 1997, (Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Socety, 2000), pp. 583-584. Cf. E. Schuller, “Women in the Dead Sea Scrolls”, in P.W. Flint and J.C. VanderKam (eds.), The Dead Sea Scrolls After Fifty Years (Leiden: Brill, 1999) vol. 2, p.  117.

[84] M. Baillet, Qumrân rotte 4, III. DJD 7 (Oxford: Clarendon Press 1982), pp. 81-105; J.M. Baumgarten, “4Q502, Marriage or Golden Age Ritual” JJS 34 (1983), pp. 125-135; idem, . “The Qumran-Essene restrains of Marriage”, in L.H. Schiffman (ed.), Archaeology and History in the Dead Sea Scrolls, (Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1990), pp. 13-24.

[85] War 2:159. Cf. also Ant. 15:379. For the general identification of these prophecies with the pesharim, see Beall, Josephus’ Description, pp. 110-111. However, the pesharim are not really predictive, and are mainly concerned with the End of Days and not with precise political events. See R. Gray, Prophetic Figures in Late Second Temple Jewish Palestine. The Evidence from Josephus, (New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993), pp. 105-107. Purification and studying holy books or scripture is attributed to elsewhere to the Essenes and are also characteristic of the yahad (ibid., pp. 83-92).

[86] War 2:562-568. Cf. War 3:12 (one among the three leaders of the expedition attacking Ascalon).

[87] War 6:300-309; Gray 1993, 158-163.

[88] See the cases discussed in G. Anderson, Sage, Saint and Sophist. Holy Men and their Associates in the Early Roman Empire (London and New York: Routledge 1994).