Essay on Analysis of The Essenes and the Dead Sea Scrolls

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Analysis of The Essenes and the Dead Sea Scrolls


“The grass withers and the flowers fall but the word of our God stands forever” Isaiah 40.8

“Mohammed Dib, a Bedouin shepherd of the T’Amireh tribe” (Keller, 1957, 401) could not have known that he would be the person who, in 1947, would bring to bear the words of Isaiah 40.8
This shepherd boy had been clambering around the clefts and gullies of a rock face on Wadi Qumran, north of the Dead Sea hoping to find one of his lost lambs. Thinking that it could have taken refuge in a cave he threw stones at the opening. He heard a jar break, became fearful and ran to fetch his fellow tribesmen. What they discovered were written scrolls of ancient papyrus, stuffed in jars and
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There have been 400 manuscripts including 100 Biblical manuscripts discovered. These include every book in the Old Testament with the exception of
Esther. The best known is the complete book of Isaiah. The scrolls and fragments
Which come from Qumran date from 200 B.C. to A.D. 68. Those from Wadi Murabba’at go up to A.D. 132-135. In the Khirbet Qumran near the cave where the first discoveries were made there has been found the ruins of a cemetery and a settlement which had been the nucleus of a Jewish community which Father de Vaux views as possibly being the wilderness retreat of the Essenes. It will take a whole generation of Biblical scholars to assess the value of these manuscripts” (Harding, 1956) Introduction
Indeed, some 50 years have elapsed and many Biblical scholars have assessed the manuscripts.
It will not be the purposes of this paper to debate the validity of the documents nor enter into archeological debate, this paper however will in Section 1, provide further historical evidence in support of the Essenes sect dwelling at Qumran. The writer will present an outline of the monastic lifestyle of the Essenes, their closed community, their laws and beliefs.
The hypothesis of
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