Sunday, October 25, 2009

Pharisees and Sadducees - From Israelite to Jew

The excellent series From Israelite to Jew has its latest chapter named Jesus and other strange Jews and one must be warned in advance: this issue is mostly about Pharisees and Sadducees with a small addition about followers of charismatic Jews such as Jesus.

At the time, that is during the historic period this podcast is discussing here, the followers of Jesus were a distinct group among Jews, but far from one developing into a different religion nor a stream of social and political importance such as the Pharisees and the Sadducees. Therefore it is only right that host Michael Satlow delves into these two groups and attempts to juxtapose them and hardly takes on the others. And the subjects according to which the division is made is around theology (the existence of angels, of free will, of fate, of soul, of afterlife and such) as well as around ritual and the authority to interpret the holy script.

A part of the historic background that would complement this depiction, would be a description of the social economic reality of the time and it seems Satlow is about to embark on such a track. However, he will first of all discuss the major source for this period: the historian Josephus. That will be then ext episode of the podcast. I expect that the title will be much more indicative than it was this time.

More FITJ:
The Dead Sea Scrolls,
Herod the Ambiguous,
Jewish varieties,
Jews in the Hasmonean era,
The Maccabee Uprising.
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