[Milton-L] Biblical Scholarship

Jason Kerr aelfric at gmail.com
Wed Aug 25 06:16:16 EDT 2010

Richard Simon was arguing against Spinoza, whose Tractatus advanced the idea
of multiple authorship. Simon was trying to reconcile Spinoza's scholarship
with the idea that the Bible could still be divinely inspired by introducing
the idea of prophetic redaction. I'd have to look again, though, to see if
Simon or Spinoza (or, for that matter Hobbes, in Leviathan) takes note of
the "inconsistency" in question. Prof. Raymond is certainly right to note,
however, the considerable influence of Simon's work.

Jason A. Kerr

On Wed, Aug 25, 2010 at 4:28 AM, Joad Raymond <joadraymond at gmail.com> wrote:

> I think there's some discussion about fractures within and the authorship
> of Genesis in the late C15th, by Lorenzo Valla, for example. In 1678 Richard
> Simon demonstrated that the Pentateuch was not by a single author -- I
> believe he was not the first to argue this, but the publication of his*Histoire Critique
> *marked a shift in attitudes to the status of scripture. See, e.g. Lawton,
> *Faith, Text and History*, and Shuger, *Renaissance Bible*, and no doubt a
> bunch of other good books.
> Joad

The purpose of poetry is to remind us
how difficult it is to remain just one person,
for our house is open, there are no keys in the doors,
and invisible guests come in and out at will.

           —Czeslaw Milosz, from "Ars Poetica?"
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