The Samaritan Update

“Mount Gerizim,

All the Days of Our Lives”

March / April 2013                                                                                                                 Vol.  XII - No 4

In This Issue


·         High Priest Aaron

·         Passover 1934

·         Samaritan Version

·         Award

·         Ebay

·         In the News

·         News from the Past

·         Future Publication

·         Coming soon

·         Biblio


Your link to the Update Index


Future Events


The Twelfth Month 3651 - March 12, 2013
The First Month 3652 - April 10, 2013

Paschal Sacrifice – April 23, 2013

Pesach – April 24, 2013

The Unleavened Bread Festival – April 30, 2013

Shavuot – June 16, 2013




The High Priest Aaron ben Ab-Hisda ben Jacob ben Aaron (1927 – 2013) is no more.
By: Benyamim Tsedaka
[Photo: The High Priest Aaron Ab-Hisda, son of High Priest Jacob, May The Almighty have mercy on him.]

Childhood and youth
A short while ago [April 19, 2013] the High Priest Aaron ben Ab-Hisda ben Jacob returned his spirit to the Creator, when he passed away following heart failure while seated in his home on Mount Gerizim. He was aged 86. May G-d have mercy.
High Priest Aaron was born in Nablus in February 5, 1927, and was educated by his father High Priest Ab-Hisda son of the High Priest Jacob, wise and held in great esteem among the Israelite Samaritans. He was an author and poet. As a child Aaron learnt the traditional poems, chants and prayers from him, and soon stood out as an exceptional singer and great reader of the Torah. He had great knowledge of the prayers of the community.
To earn a living he was employed as a nurse at the National (Al-Watani) Hospital in Nablus, where he worked for forty-five years. He was considered loyal and expert in helping patients, and in more specific diagnosis of their illnesses.
At the same time he devoted many years to instructing young Israelite Samaritan children in the Torah and prayers. Choral singers were shocked to hear of his sudden passing. Like his brother High Priest Joseph who died in 1998, High Priest Aaron suffered sudden heart failure, which left members of the community pained and wordless.

High service to the his Community
High Priest Aaron continued to serve his community until his very last day by giving good advice to thousands of people who approached him from outside the community. The community returned his affection as he was consistently agreeable to all, and always endeavoured to make peace between members of his own community.
High Priest Aaron was revered throughout his life. He was a member of the Community Committee in Nablus between 1979 and 1983, and took up the High Priesthood in 2010 after High Priest Elazar b. Tsedaka passed away. High Priest Aaron fulfilled his role faithfully. He stood before his community in the service of the Almighty in the synagogue, conducting the ceremonial milestones in community life: the ritual circumcision, Torah Reading conclusions, engagements, weddings and mourning days. For the last three years he directed the Passover sacrifice ceremony; his beautiful voice rang strong and clear right up until his last day.

Respected by Prime Ministers
At official meetings with senior public figures in Israel, and in areas under the Palestinian Authority, he represented the Israelite Samaritan Community proudly and honourably. Only last Thursday, April 18, he returned from a farewell meeting with the Palestinian Prime Minister, Dr. Salam Fayyed, where he gave him a symbolic Key to Mount Gerizim in a decorative frame, three years after he presented him with the First Israelite Samaritan Medal for Peace. Recently High Priest Aaron visited Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s home to console him on the death of his father Ben Zion. At these three meetings the Prime Ministers received the High Priest Aaron respectfully. The Community Committee in Mount Gerizim notes that High Priest Aaron’s presence and calm demeanor resulted in improved relations and more successful progress in community matters. He bore himself nobly at the head of joint missions of the community in Mount Gerizim and in Holon, and brought great honour to the Israelite Samaritans with his words of peace and reconciliation.

A world quality singer
Of special value to the Community were his prayers and festive songs. His voice was wonderful; he was among the world’s finest singers. He had a resonant voice, strong and clear, drawing on a powerful tradition of rich and tonally accurate singing. He was a beacon for many who aspired to emulate his precision in song and his breadth of knowledge of Samaritan chants. While he preserved his quiet ways and modesty, his welcoming countenance lit the way for all ages in the community. He received each visitor to his home with a shining smile, and heart-penetrating conversation. He insisted on accompanying every guest to the threshold of his home when leaving, showering them with blessings for success on their journey and in all they do. On his departure he leaves more than 750 members of the community with damp eyes, saddened by his passing.

Most beloved personality
He made sure to visit each member of the community in Mount Gerizim and Holon if they were hospitalized, at least once. He would lay his soft, gentle hand on the sufferer’s forehead, and wish them a speedy recovery. Nobody in the community will ever forget him for this. He leaves behind him many who will remember fondly the pleasure of being in his presence.
High Priest Aaron distinguished himself by ensuring the continuity of his family line. He professed great love for his wife Leah, and together they raised five sons (one of whom tragically drowned in a well at the family home on Mount Gerizim about forty years ago), and two daughters. His grandson, son of his son Amram, was named after him, and brought him great satisfaction during his last few years.
The Community is holding the hand of his widow Leah, and the hands of the sons and daughters of the family. May the Almighty have mercy on his spirit on his burial last Friday, April 19, 2013 at the cemetery on Mount Gerizim, accompanied by all the members of the community, dignitaries from Nablus, many Nablus residents, and senior Israeli and Palestinian officials and military and police officers. Over the next seven days of mourning after he was buried many will flock to his house from all over the country and the world to pay their respects.
With the Mercy of the Almighty may his spirit grace the Garden of Eden forever. With ever-increasing grace, nothing is greater than the Almighty in His Grateness.

The Community mourns
The passing of the High Priest Aaron ben Ab-Hisda has been especially difficult for all Israelite Samaritans, because this week, on Tuesday 23rd April between the sunsets they are about to present the Passover Sacrifice on Mount Gerizim. Everyone expected that, as during the last three years, High Priest Aaron would open the ceremony in his pleasant, comforting strong voice, wishing peace to members of his community and the entire world, before starting the reading of the Exodus, Chap. 12 passage. Even though it is forbidden to mourn on a Festival or Sabbath, no one will see happy Samaritan faces on the coming Day of Sacrifice. The Ceremony will be opened by the new High Priest.

The New High Priest Aabed-El b. High Priest Asher
Afterwards, at the end of the seven days of mourning, the deputy High Priest Aabed-El b. High Priest Asher, son of the High Priest Matzliach, aged 78, will be appointed to the High Priesthood. Mild-mannered and pious, and a successful businessman, may the Almighty extend his days.
The Israelite Samaritan High Priest is chosen by the Almighty based on the Torah principle: “The Eldest Priest of His Brothers” [Book of Leviticus].

Translated by: Vanessa Squire, London
Written and edited by: Benyamim Tsedaka
Left Photo by Ori Orhof, the new High Priest, Aabed-El, b. Asher b. Matzliach, long may he live.


The Samaritan Passover 1934, a Black & White Movie

This vintage black and white movie, Ideal Travel Talks: Palestine 1934 by Edelheit Productions, was published in 1934 in the USA. Now this is a part of the Spielberg Jewish Film Archive at the Hebrew University. It consists of the 1934 Passover, 1 hour and roughly 21 minutes, but inside there is a full 9 minutes on the Samaritan Passover, which starts 30 minutes into movie and last for about 9 minutes. This is a very unique and rare piece of footage. It appears that this Passover was performed on a Friday, since the shadows are short, which means the sun is high.

See the movie on Youtube: 1934 Samaritan Passover and the full description: Ideal travel talks : Palestine 1934

Also, Work and Ceremony in Palestine, 1926. Chapter of this French film, “Offrande des Samaritains a Pessah, sup le Mont Guerisim” starts at 25 minutes into the film for 3 minutes. This is interesting, a Samaritan and his wife are making Matzah, the lambs, praying and the priests. It appears to be from 1926, yet the date of the film, 1927. This film is also of the Spielberg Jewish Film Archive at the Hebrew University.



The Israelite Samaritan Version of the Torah: First English Translation Compared with the Masoretic Version (title is link to book preview)

After years of the announcement of the Samaritan Version of the Torah, it has finally available in publication through many book sellers. People around the world are now able to purchase this English translation after this long unexpected wait.

Those that has recently purchased the hard covered book, will find interesting English insights of the Samaritan Torah and Samaritan views from the short commentaries.

The parallel columns of the scripts, English translation of the Samaritan and Jewish versions (from Genesis to Deuteronomy), helps to see the differences between the two texts and where in areas that the verses are different. This book will now be available for English readers other than the original Arabic, Hebrew or Samaritan Hebrew that the reader may not understand.

There is a commentary on Exodus 12:2, page 151-2, that needs to be rewritten, it reads: ‘Calculation of the calendar: The Jewish and Samaritan calculations of the calendar are very close systems. The difference between the two systems is caused by the opening year of each calculation. The Jewish calculation starts from the first year of creation, but the Samaritan calculation starts from the first year of the entrance of the people of Israel with Joshua Bin-Nun to the Holy Land. Hence the leap of years in both calendars are not parallel. Therefore, sometimes the Samaritan festivals take place 30 days after the same Jewish ones.’

This commentary is misleading, the Samaritans have two (2) calendar counting, the first and most important that of the calendar counting from the beginning of Creation whereas even Passover is in the first month of this counting. The Jews use a different counting calculation than the Samaritans but still starts by their calculation of from the beginning of Creation. The Second calculation that the Samaritans use is from the entrance of the Israelites when they entered the land of Canaan. This calculation of the months has nothing to do with setting the time of the Passover or other times since they are set from the creation time-set.


Martin Abegg -- Trinity Western University

"More than simply a translation, this is a document infused with the unique culture of the Israelite-Samaritans as no other English translation could be. . . Truly an historic piece of literature."


Haseeb Shehadeh -- University of Helsinki
"The Samaritan Pentateuch is a vital source not solely for Samaritanology but also for biblical studies. . . . Benyamim Tsedaka here offers a significant scholarly resource for Hebrew speakers and English-speaking audiences alike."

Terry Giles -- Gannon University
"Tsedaka and Sullivan have made a significant contribution, giving a larger audience than ever before access to the Samaritan Pentateuch. This English translation gives a faithful rendition of the Samaritan text and, by comparing it to the Masoretic version, shows the pluriform nature of the early biblical textual tradition. A welcome addition to the biblical studies library!"

Étienne Nodet -- l'École biblique de Jérusalem

"Both forms of the Torah have been available since the seventeenth century in the great Polyglots, with Latin translation, but modern versions were lacking. This synoptic translation definitely fulfills a desideratum, all the more in that it includes scholarly introductions and extensive footnotes."


Steven Fine, -- Professor of Jewish History, Yeshiva University, Director, Center for Israel Studies; Arch of Titus Digital Restoration Project

 The publication of your English translation of the Samaritan Torah is a moment for celebration.  I am aware of how truly Tsedaka and Sullivan have dedicated themselves to this project, and am honored to have a small part in it.  Your efforts over a lifetime to build the Samaritan community and to make its rich heritage available to all is inspiring. 


Jerusalem Educators Forum Award


(Photos: Husney Cohen receives award at Al-Quds Universisty. Al-Quds University is a Palestinian university with campuses in Jerusalem, Abu Dis, and al-Bireh.)


Jerusalem Educators Forum awarded Museum Director Samaritan priest Hosni Wasif to honor him for his book "The Wandering in Sinai Peninsula" as the best books published years ago. 
Celebrated at 2 p.m. Wednesday at April 10, 2013 University of Jerusalem-Abu Dis.

Award for the best book on the shield of the writer and researcher with the Samaritan high priest "labyrinthitis in Sinai Peninsula"

Samaritan priest Hosni Wasif: “My thanks and gratitude to the supervisors and participants in the ceremony by Jerusalem Educators Forum in the Zahrat Festival cultural creativity in University of Jerusalem-Abu Dis, and the three religions for peace and raise the banner of security and stability for the peoples of the entire region.”

Also see: Nablus 4/17/2013 Wafa- Dedouin Samaritan- نابلس 17-4-2013 وفــا – بدوية السامري


For Sale on Ebay

Original Ebay page information from the seller:

Rare Antique Samaritan Ketuba Marriage Contract Manuscript on Parchment Ca 1700

An extremely rare antique Samaritan Ketuba/ marriage contract manuscript in Samaritan Hebrew on parchment, Ca 1700.

The writer signed his name at the end: Avisha ben Pinchas Hacohen- renowned Samaritan writer.

Framed, Good condition considering its age, some water and tear to the parchment (it was probably once kept folded. Measures: 55cm x 42cm / 21.65in x 16.5 in. Price: $18,000.00 Item location: Netanya, Israel Link to page



Binyamin Tsedaka commented:

“I am sorry to disappoint you because I found out after you have sent me the 5 attachments of the marriage contract, that the manuscript in much newer than I thought, as I said initially it was almost impossible to read, now it is clearer.

The marriage contract you have in hand done between Marhib b. Shalah b. Marhib from the family of Marhib and Shalabieh d. Shalabi b. Yacob from the Dinfi family that married in Nablus 77 years ago, in 1937. The signer on the contract is Priest Abisha b. Phinhas b. Yessac that became High Priest in 1943 till his death in 1961.

I know this couple since I am now 68 years old. Marhib died young from heart shock in 1966 and left Shalabieh to raise their 4 sons and two daughter. His first son is now 75 years old. Shalabieh is still living on Mount Gerizim and she is 94 years old, still strong and open minded. 


Since the custom is to keep the contract saved and hidden in the property of the groom's father in law, in this case Shalabi that in his old days lived in Nablus [most of his life he lived with his brothers in Salt on the east side of Jordan river, from there [Nablus] it was removed into the hands of the ones who bought it, for a low price of maybe hundreds of shekels or dollars, more or less.

Of course this new facts change all the picture of the sale and estimation of the real price of the contract, that to the most, since there are hundreds of marriage contracts of the 1900's, maybe you can get from selling it between $800 to $1200.”


Current Ebay Listing, Price Now $4500.00

An extremely rare antique Samaritan Ketuba / marriage contract manuscript in Samaritan Hebrew on parchment. The writer signed his name at the end: Avisha Ben Pinchas Hacohen – renowned Samaritan writer.


In the News


Danon: Condolences for Death of Samaritan High Priest


Clinging to ancient traditions, the last Samaritans keep the faith


Samaritan Passover sacrifice on Mount Gerizim


From Moses to Modernity: Passover With the Samaritans 


Ancient Samaritan sect marks Passover sacrifice near Nablus


Samaritan sect perform Passover sacrifice at Mount Grizim


Samaritans Celebrate Passover with Prayer at Sunrise


Members Samaritan Sect Seal Oven


Samaritans Perform Passover Sacrifices


Taking Passover back to its roots

Posted on March 25, 2013  Judy Lash Balint/






Correction: Israel-Struggling Sect story

  April 10, 2013 By Dalia Nammari, Associated Press

Mount Gerizim, West Bank — In a story March 17 about eastern European brides joining the Holy Land's dwindling Samaritan community, The Associated Press misspelled the name of one of the interviewees. Her name is spelled Alexandra Krasuk.

A corrected version of the story is below:

European women marry, give hope to Samaritans

East European women breathe new life by marrying into dwindling Middle Eastern community



News Articles from the Past


APRIL 21, 1935

Public Seders Thrill Visitors to Palestine


Jerusalem, Apr. 19 (JTA) –

Never before has Palestine celebrated Passover in such a grand and glorious manner as this year, with the country astride the peak of prosperity.

Public Seders were held all over the country for tourists who arrived in Palestine for the special purpose of witnessing the Passover celebrations here. A Seder was arranged in the Menorah Club in Jerusalem and attended by Nahum Sokolow, president of the World Zionist Organization, Prof. Selig Brodetsky and other members of the World Zionist Executive.

The High Commissioner of Palestine visited the Samaritans and witnessed their Passover ceremony of sacrificing a lamb on Mount Gerisim, in accordance with the Bible. The Samaritan High Priest offered a special prayer. The High Commissioner was asked by the Samaritans for government assistance to build a Samaritan Synagogue.

All the stores in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv were overcrowded with Jews doing their Passover shopping.

To JTA Archive article


JUNE 10, 1935

Samaritans Protest Hunt for Contraband

Nablus, Palestine, Jun. 9 (JTA) –

The Samaritan High Priest today lodged a protest with the Palestine government against a search conducted by the Palestine police in the homes of Samaritans, the ancient Hebrew tribe, on the pretext of looking for foreign smuggled goods. No such goods have been discovered in any of the houses during the search.

To JTA Archive article


AUGUST 26, 1949

Remains of Ancient Samaritan Synagogue Discovered in Israel; May Shed New Light on Sect

JERUSALEM, Aug. 25 (JTA) –

The remains of a Samaritan synagogue dating back to the fourth century C.E. have been unearthed in a site near Latrun under the direction of Prof. Eliezer Sukenik, of the Hebrew University, it was reported here. The archaeological discovery is expected to shed new light on the history of the Samaritan sect.

The are, where the discovery was made by a group of soldiers, is on the border of no-man's land, which separated Israel and Arab forces. The Jewish troops manned machine-guns to ward off any possible interference with the archaeological excavations, which took five weeks to complete.

One of the chief finds is two mosaic floors of the ancient synagogue, which faced Mount Gerizim, the center of the surviving members of the Samaritans. The floors contain a Greek inscription which has not yet been deciphered, two candelabra and a verse from the Song of Moses in the Book of Exodus which differs slightly from the Masoretic version generally accepted by Jews. The finds, including the synagogue floors, have been removed to the Hebrew University under authority of the Israel Department of Antiquities. A complete study of the inscriptions will be made by University and other experts.

To JTA Archive article


APRIL 8, 1960

Israel Permits Samaritans to Leave for Jordan for Passover


An entire community of 150 Samaritans crossed the Israel-Jordan border today to celebrate Passover at Mount Gerizim in Nablus, the Biblical Shechem in the eastern part of Palestine now held by Jordan. The Samaritans consider themselves the "true" Jews but are not regarded as Jews by Jewish religious authorities.

The Israeli Samaritans, who were met by Samaritans from Jordan, were headed by their high priest. They will be permitted to remain in Jordan for ten days. Their ceremony, scheduled to start shortly before midnight, is highlighted by a killing of a sacrificial lamb in literal observance of the Passover ritual.

Before the border crossing, the Israeli Samaritans managed to exchange the equivalent of five pounds sterling each to be used during their 10-day stay.

To JTA Archive article


Photo: 7 April 1960, 08:50:53. Members of the Samaritan community in Israel cross into Jordan through Mandelbaum Gate in order to spend Passover in Mt. Gerizim according to ancient tradition. Source


Future Publication


Jews and Samaritans: The Origins and History of Their Early Relations 

By Gary N. Knoppers,  June 4, 2013

Even in antiquity, writers were intrigued by the origins of the people called Samaritans, living in the region of ancient Samaria (near modern Nablus). The Samaritans practiced a religion almost identical to Judaism and shared a common set of scriptures. Yet the Samaritans and Jews had little to do with each other. In a famous New Testament passage about an encounter between Jesus and a Samaritan woman, the author writes, "Jews do not share things in common with Samaritans." 

The Samaritans claimed to be descendants of the northern tribes of Joseph. Classical Jewish writers said, however, that they were either of foreign origin or the product of intermarriages between the few remaining northern Israelites and polytheistic foreign settlers. Some modern scholars have accepted one or the other of these ancient theories. Others have avidly debated the time and context in which the two groups split apart. 

Covering over a thousand years of history, this book makes an important contribution to the fields of Jewish studies, biblical studies, ancient Near Eastern studies, Samaritan studies, and early Christian history by challenging the oppositional paradigm that has traditionally characterized the historical relations between Jews and Samaritans.

Product Details: Hardcover: 352 pages, Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA (June 4, 2013)

Language: English, ISBN-10: 0195329546, ISBN-13: 978-0195329544 Preview of the book


Coming Soon the Archives of the Samaritan Update


The Joseph Cycle (Genesis 37-45) in the Samaritan-Arabic Commentary of Meshalma ibn Murjan.

Edited and Translated by Gladys Levine Rosen, 1951 for her PhD. Dissertation at Columbia University. Number 4097 in Crown & Pummer’s Biblio. This booklet that the Editor of the Samaritan Update has recently obtained contains both the Arabic and English translation which will be photographed and placed in 3 portions in PDF formant so that Rosen’s rare work can be available to everyone.




Biblio Additions


Between Cooperation and Hostility: Multiple Identities in Ancient Judaism ...

 Edited by Rainer Albertz, Jakob Wöhrle


The Construction of Samari (t) an Identity from the Inside and from the Outside

S Schorch - Between Cooperation and Hostility: Multiple Identities …, 2013

... 148 Stefan Schorch At least in the case of the Samarian followers of the Gerizim temple, who
then became Samaritans, the only way out of this circulus vitiousus of factual or suspected
collaboration, between heretics and foreign powers, seems to have been to create two new ...

Conflicting Models of Identity and the

T Romer - Between Cooperation and Hostility: Multiple Identities …, 2013

... the Dtr notion of cult centralization and perhaps to signal the acceptance of different Yhwh
sanctuaries (eg, Jerusalem, Gerizim, Elephantine). ... itself as the conclusion of a Hexateuch, and
a Hexateuch would cer- tainly have also been acceptable to the Samaritans (see especially ...

Manifest Identity: From Ioudaios to Jew

AM Berlin - Between Cooperation and Hostility: Multiple Identities …, 2013

... city on Mount Gerizim, just 10 km southeast of Sa- maria. Excavations here have uncovered a
monumental sanctuary and well- built town covering about 400 dunams (fig. 11, top). A plethora
of inscrip- tions and historical references identify the population as Samaritans, a sect ...


Roman Influence on Relations between Jews and Samaritans

By Jonathan Bourgel, Yad Ben-Zvi, Jerusalem 2012


The article attempts to demonstrate that in the late 2nd―early 3rd century CE the Romans began to pursue a different policy toward the Samaritan population than that toward the Jewish community. As a result, the Samaritans were deprived of the rights that were granted to the Jews. There is reason to believe that this shift was the outcome of the religious policy conducted by the emperors Septimius Severus (193-211 CE) and Caracalla (211-217 CE). Their twofold efforts to ensure the privileges conferred to the Jews, on the one hand, and to stamp out Jewish proselytism, on the other, led them to establish a narrower legal definition of Jewish identity that did not include the Samaritans. The fact that henceforth they belonged to distinct legal categories with different rights is likely to have reduced mutual openness between Jews and Samaritans and to have greatly affected the relations between them.


Garizim et Ébal dans le Pentateuque. Quelques remarques en marge de la publication d'un nouveau fragment du Deutéronome = Gerizim and Ebal in the Pentateuch. Additional notes to the publication of a new Deuteronomy fragment

By Christophe Nihan. Université de Lausanne / UMR 7192, SUISSE

2012, vol. 54, pp. 185-210 [26 page(s) (article)] Maisonneuve, Paris, FRANCE

The present study offers additional notes to the recent publication by James Charlesworth of a new Deuteronomy fragment found in the Judaean desert and which confirms the antiquity of a variant reading in Dt 27:4 that locates an altar on Mount Gerizim. This discovery is viewed in light of other recent works showing that the classical model of a Pentateuch written in Judea before its adoption by the Samaritan community must be completely revised: the Pentateuch now appears to be the product of a compromise between Judaean and Samaritan elites in which it is Samaria―not Judaea―that played the dominant role. Simultaneously, the opposite variant, preserved by the MT and most versions and locating the altar on Mount Ebal, cannot be later than the desctruction of the Mount Gerizim sanctuary by Hyrcanus―as Charlesworth suggests—but must necessarily be earlier. This observation raises the possibility that versions of the Pentateuch belonging to each of the two communities (Judaea and Samaria) may have existed as soon as the third century BCE.


The 'remembered for good' formula in Samaritan Aramaic and early Hybrid Samaritan Hebrew

By Christian Stadel, Hebrew University, Jerusalem, ISRAEL, 2012, Oxford Centre for Postgraduate Hebrew Studies, Oxford, ROYAUME-UNI  

This article presents for the first time all literary and epigraphic Samaritan Aramaic and early Hybrid Samaritan Hebrew examples of the ?? 'remembered for good' formula, dating from approximately the fourth to fourteenth centuries CE. The examples are examined as to their form and function in their literary as well as material context, comparing them to the pagan and Jewish attestations of the formula from Roman and Byzantine times. While highlighting some parallel developments in the Jewish and Samaritan usages, the article demonstrates the long and diverse history of this antique and prevalent Aramaic formula in the Samaritan tradition.


A Septuagint Translation Tradition and the Samaritan Targum to Genesis 41:43

By Christian Stadel, Leiden University, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands

Journal of Biblical Literature, Vol. 131, No. 4/ Winter 2012, pp. 705-713


Hapax legomena in the Hebrew Bible have posed problems of understanding ever since Hebrew ceased to be a spoken language and had to be learned as a second language. Still more problematic is the case of non-Hebrew terms attested only once in the Hebrew Bible. Even Hebrew speakers, lacking the cultural background from which these terms were taken, must have found it difficult to interpret them. There probably were traditions of how each word of this sort was to be interpreted in the specific verse in which it appeared. These traditions might have passed on the original foreign meaning or might have derived a new one from the context. With the advent of Bible translations into other languages, the Septuagint (LXX), later Aramaic targums and others, such translation traditions become evident.1


The Age of the Earth: The Biblical and Historical Evidence


학문과기독교세계관 , 6 , 단일호 , Startpage 63 , Endpage 89 , Totalpage 27

( Gye Sang Ha ) 2012


Chronology is called "the backbone of history" because it is essential to a correct reconstruction of history. The genealogies in Genesis 5 and 11 have been considered as significant in establishing chronology. Among several different textual versions (the Masoretic text, the Septuagint, and the Samaritan Pentateuch), these genealogies of the Masoretic text are regarded to preserve the original figures in their purest form. Besides, the genealogies in Genesis 5 and 1 are shown to be very unique in its literary structure with time specifications and its Hebrew grammatical feature, and thus they are called chronogenealogies. By using these chronogenealogies along with other chronological data in several key Biblical texts I was able to set up AM (Anno Mundi, "in the year of the world") reckoning. Then, through synchronisms of Israelite Kings in the Bible with Ancient Near Eastern kings in the historical records I could trace back to the Creation week. The result was a remarkably very short world history which makes a stark contrast to the position of evolutionists.


The revolutions of the Samaritans in Palestine in 484 and 529 and their diplomatic mission to the Persian Court: a new approach

D TSOULKANAKIS - BYZANTINA. Annual Review of the" …, 2012 -

DIMITRIOS TSOULKANAKIS. Abstract. This study consists of two parts. In the
first, are recorded the events of the 
Samaritan revolution in Palestine in the years 484 and
529 during the reign of emperor Zeno and Justinian respectively. 

The Four Moses Death Accounts

By Philip Y. Yoo – University of Oxford,  Oxford OX1 3LD, United Kingdom

Journal of Biblical Literature, 2012 – Society of Biblical Literature, Vol. 131, No. 3/ Fall 2012, pp. 423-441


Ever since Martin Noth proposed that Deuteronomy is the introduction to a Deuteronomistic History (DtrH), critics have followed his lead in attributing significant portions of Deuteronomy 34 to this document.1 A survey of recent publications on the composition of Deuteronomy 34 confirms the considerable influence of the Nothian paradigm. Phillip Stoellger contends that a Deuteronomistic school is solely responsible for the composition of Deuteronomy 34.2 Following the studies of Erhard Blum,3 Félix García López identifies layers of DtrH (Deut 34:1*, 2aα, 5, 6a), a pre-Priestly Deuteronomic composition (34:2aβ-4, 10-12), and a composition of the Priestly school (34:1*, 5b, 7a, 8-9).4 John Van Seters presents three distinct layers in Deuteronomy 34: based on Deut 3:23-28, Dtr provides the basic account in 34:1*, 5, 6a, (7a); J then builds upon DtrH with vv. 1b-3 (as preserved in the Samaritan Pentateuch), 4, (6b), 7b-8, 10-12; finally, P adds a layer in vv. 1a, 5, 9.5 Thomas Römer and Marc Zvi Brettler argue that an original Dtr version (Deut 34:1*, 4*, 5, 6) was subsequently revised by a pentateuchal redactor (34:4*, 10-12) and then a Priestly-Deuteronomistic redactor (34:1*, 7-9).6 In response to these studies, I will suggest that a source-critical reading of Deut 34:1-12 also offers a plausible solution that untangles the complexities of this text. The J, E, D, and P accounts of Moses’ death were combined by a single redactor (R) because in an uninterrupted narrative, Moses can die only once.


La formation du Pentateuque samaritain

By David Hamidovic

Le Monde de la Bible, 2012-2013 pp. 24-29, Bayard, Montrouge, FRANCE 


Longtemps cantonné au rayon des versions tardives de la Bible hébraïque, le Pentateuque samaritain bénéficie d'un regain d'intérêt depuis quelques années. Au regard de découvertes archéologiques, épigraphiques et littéraires, et suite à une réévaluation des textes bibliques, les chercheurs y voient aujourd'hui plus clair sur la formation du Pentateuque samaritain. Elle s'effectua en deux étapes: l'étape samarienne puis l'étape samaritaine.


Exercitations Divine: Containing diverse Questions and Solutions for the right understanding of the Scriptures: Proving the necessitie, majestie, integritie, perspicuitie, and sense thereof... all which are cleared out of the Hebrew, and comparing them with the Samaritans, Chaldie, and Syriaok copies, and with the Greeke interpretors and vulgar Latine translation

By John Weemse, Printed by T. Cotes for John Bellamie. 1634, 189 pages



The Samaritan Update is open to any articles that are relative to Samaritan Studies. Submit your work to the Editor. The Editor 

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