Intro to the Bible: Whence Law Codes? Law Codes in the Ancient Near East, Judah, Greece, and Rome
February 7 @ 9:30 am - 11:30 am
For us, who live in the twenty-first century, law codes are not strange, but expected. We know that if we rob, kill, or maim another, there will be repercussions, not just from the family of the person robbed, killed, or maimed, but from the state as well. Was this also the case in antiquity? How, when, and why did the state become involved in redressing wrongs done to individuals? The Bible is full of laws, not only the ten commandments, but supposedly 613 commandments make up biblical law. What was the role of these laws in Judean society? What would have been the repercussions, for example, if someone had cooked a kid in its mother’s milk (Exod. 23:19, 34:26; Deut. 14:21)?
We will look at the role of law codes in ancient Babylon, Judah, Greece, and Rome in an attempt to discover how and why Torah law became such a fundamental aspect of Rabbinic Judaism.
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Cost: $10/semester (community members); Free for members of the J
Class will meet on eight consecutive Wednesdays from 9:30-11:30, Feb 7 to March 28, at the Jewish Community Center. Please bring a Bible with Apocrypha to class. Other material will be supplied.
This course is sponsored by Washtenaw Community College and the Jewish Community Center of Greater Ann Arbor.