Judaism, Revelation, Bible Criticism, and the Dangers of Radical Doubt

Dec. 27 2019

In his 2015 book Revelation and Authority, Benjamin Sommer sought to reconcile modern biblical scholarship with Jewish theology. He discusses this book, his own education, the importance of ritual in understanding the Psalms, why radical love is not the solution to all problems, and much else in conversation with Matt Lynch. Noting that he has long been wary of the dangers of fanatical religiosity, Sommer contends that a greater danger in the contemporary West comes from the radical doubt of those who wish to write off religion entirely. He concludes the interview by urging academic Bible scholars to abandon their longstanding fixation on efforts to date various biblical passages. (Audio, 66 minutes.)

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Read more at OnScript

More about: Biblical criticism, Conservative Judaism, Hebrew Bible, Judaism, Revelation

Benny Gantz Should Be Praised for Compromising, Not Condemned for Capitulating

March 30 2020

After three inconclusive elections in a year’s time, Israel’s political stalemate seemed to come to an end last week when the leaders of the two largest parties—Benny Gantz and Benjamin Netanyahu—agreed to form a governing coalition together with some of the smaller parties. According to the deal, Netanyahu will serve as prime minister for eighteen months, after which he will be succeeded by Gantz. This compromise, paradoxically, has led to the breakup of Gantz’s Blue and White party, as two of its three constituent factions have refused to join the unity government. Their leaders have denounced Gantz for supposedly crumbling before Netanyahu, but Jonathan Tobin argues that he has acted bravely:

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Read more at JNS

More about: Benjamin Netanyahu, Benny Gantz, Israeli politics, Moshe Yaalon, Yair Lapid