An Introduction to Judaic Thought and Rabbinic Literature by Martin Sicker

By Martin Sicker

Many humans have heard the time period Talmud yet have very little proposal what it's, what it includes, and why it was once written; in addition, few have ever truly regarded into one in every of its works, or even fewer may make any experience of it in the event that they did. right here, Sicker offers readers with perception into the character and heritage of Judaic idea and its literature via illustrative examples and transparent reasons. Rabbinic literature is critical, even to people who should not religiously prone, since it by myself represents the embodiment of the highbrow legacy that has contributed tremendously to the survival and continuity of the Jewish humans. via thousand years of dispersion, rabbinic literature used to be the first hyperlink to the prior and supplied desire for the longer term. It was once, in impact, the highbrow native land of a humans scattered through the international. no matter if one hasn't ever learn any Judaic literature, she or he may have a few idea of what it truly is after examining this book.

This ebook is written for nearly all of adults who both attend synagogue or have a normal curiosity in Judaism, even if Jewish or no longer. It offers perception into the which means of phrases which are utilized in sermons, lectures, and articles, equivalent to Torah, halakhah, midrash, Talmud, and Jewish legislation, all of that are part parts of rabbinic literature. Sicker explains the which means of those and different phrases, the our bodies of literature they confer with, and the ancient linkage among them in a simple, available demeanour. In a feeling, this booklet isn't just a consultant to the literature, but in addition an highbrow background of Judaic proposal and tradition that are meant to be of curiosity to somebody even a little bit fascinated with how Judaism controlled to outlive for millennia with no valuable associations or clerical hierarchy.

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These included, for example, requirements such as circumcision, which the narrative of the book of Genesis records as being first divinely imposed on Abraham centuries earlier, and traditions such as tithing, a practice which the patriarch appears to have observed on his own initiative (Gen. 14:20) and which was followed by his grandson Jacob (Gen. 18:22). Accordingly, it might be asserted that not only was there an Oral Torah that was presented by Moses together with the Written Torah, but that in fact some of it was already normative practice before being stipulated in the Written Torah.

This hermeneutic rule applies in a situation in which rules (4) and (5) do not apply because it is self-evident that a stated generalization requires a specification to clarify its meaning, and the converse. 8. Anything included in a generalization that is singled out to teach something, that teaching is presumed to apply to everything encompassed by the generalization. 9. Anything included in a generalization that is singled out to discuss a provision analogous to the general category, is presumed be more lenient rather than more stringent.

The biblical text stipulates: The wages of a hired servant shall not abide with thee all night until the morning (Lev. 19:13). The simple sense of this is that the worker has to be paid the same night following completion of his work. However, there is another biblical stipulation that seems to contradict the former: In the same day thou shalt give him his hire, neither shall then sun go down upon it (Deut. 24:15), indicating he has to be paid during the day. The guiding principle for resolving this apparent conflict was that where two biblical texts appeared to deal with the same issue, it must be assumed that the second text intends to say or stipulate something not included in the first.

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