Who Wrote Deuteronomy? -- By: George Jeshuron

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 090:360 (Oct 1933)
Article: Who Wrote Deuteronomy?
Author: George Jeshuron


Who Wrote Deuteronomy?

George Jeshuron

Part II.

Let us take up now Dr. S. R. Driver’s article on Deuteronomy, in the Jewish Encyclopedia (Funk & Wagnalls ).

Says Dr. Driver: “It is the unanimous opinion of modern critics that Deuteronomy is not the work of Moses, but that it was, in its main parts, written in the seventh century B. C., either during the reign of Manasseh, or during that of Josiah (but before his eighteenth year, the Book of the Law found in that year in the Temple (see 2 Kings 22) clearly containing Deuteronomy, if indeed it included anything more)”. The reasons given by Dr. Driver are as follows:

In the first place Dr. Driver claims that Deuteronomy is not an integral piece of work, but is a compilation “dependent upon the narrative and laws, respectively, of JE in Exodus and Numbers; entire phrases from the earlier documents being frequently embedded in them (compare Deut. 1:33, 35, 36 with Exodus 13:21, and Numbers 14:23, 24 respectively; and Deut. 16:16, 19 with Exodus 23:6, 8. 17).” Now, let us see what all that means. Let us bring verbatim the passages pointed out. They are as follows:

(1) Deut. 1:33, 35, 36:

33. Haholak lipnaikem in the way, to seek you out a place to have you rest: in firelight at night, to show you by what way you should go, and in cloud in daytime.

35. Surely no one of these men, this evil generation, shall see the good land which I swore to give unto your fathers.

36. Save Caleb, son of Jephune: he shall see her; and to him will I give the land he had trodden upon and to his sons, because asher mile ahareh iehovah.

(2) Exodus 13:21:

And YHVH halak lipnaihem by day in a pillar of cloud, to lead them the way; and at night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and by night.

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