Entries by David Galston

Accepting the Unacceptable

Who wants to argue with a Rabbi? I do not, but this week a situation fell upon me. A local Rabbis of the Orthodox tradition cornered me and insisted that Moses wrote the Torah, the first five books of the Bible. Beyond this, he claimed that in Judaism such knowledge is unquestionable. He seemed eager [...]

Of Dates and Times

When Charles Darwin's theory of evolution first gained popularity, one criticism was that the natural process he described took time, lots of time. In the 1700's Georges-Louis Leclerc estimated the earth was 75,000 years old. This was not enough time for evolution to produce all the life forms on our planet.

Backwards and Forwards

In Biblical Studies, there are two basic movements of criticism. The backward movement is the study of early units of developing tradition, and the forward movement is the study of later combinations of units into a larger, complex story. These two movements have names. The backward movement is called Form Criticism, and the forward movement is [...]