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Beyond the Qumran Community: The Sectarian Movement of the Dead Sea Scrolls Paperback – November 2, 2009

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Beyond the Qumran Community: The Sectarian Movement of the Dead Sea Scrolls + Rediscovering the Dead Sea Scrolls: An Assessment of Old and New Approaches and Methods + The Archaeology of Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls (Studies in the Dead Sea Scrolls and Related Literature)
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

John J. Collins is Holmes Professor of Old Testament at Yale Divinity School. Among his many other books are The Apocalyptic Imagination, Introduction to the Hebrew Bible, and The Bible After Babel.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 278 pages
  • Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. (November 2, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802828876
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802828873
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,358,717 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on March 3, 2010
Format: Paperback
Collins presents all points of view in his book on the Qumran community. His writing is also very clear, and accessible even to the general reader.

He has an interesting overviews of the Yahad and the historical background to the community.

I was especially fascinated by his chapter on the Essenes. Both Pliny and Josephus give favorable reports about the Essenes, and Josephus spends a disproportionate length of time on them. He says "the Essenes behave with semnotes...They show self-control...in their attitudes toward passions, sex, and women. The Essene community of goods illustrates the Jewish pursuit of koinonia...which is the opposite of misanthropia, the vice with which Jews were often charged" (p 137).

But was the community of Qumran an Essene community? Perhaps the greatest objection is the presence of women there, because the Yahad taught celibacy.

Most fascinating in connection to later Christianity is the presence in the scrolls of a belief that some people after death, the just, would reach heaven, whereas others would reside in "a dark pit shaken by storms" (p 151).

The connection between the Therapeutae and the Essenes, although their doctrines seem to coincide on many points, is still too obscure to many any definite judgment. The Therapeutae did allow for women, most of them virgins, however, and drank no wine and ate no meat.

A fine addition to the discussion.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on February 15, 2010
Format: Paperback
Early Christianity is a subject that eludes many scholars. "Beyond the Qumran Community: The Sectarian Movement of the Dead Sea Scrolls" focuses on the Qumran community focusing on the periods and the origins of the texts that have fueled much of the research surrounding the scrolls. Stating that there were other communities involved in this movement, John J. Collins gives a scholarly look into these possible other houses, making "Beyond the Qumran Community" a very recommended read for professional or amateur biblical studies collections.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Karen M. Gray on April 23, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Much is still controversial. I am recommending Collins' work to my students because his approach is unexpectedly objective and thorough in its coverage of the critical issues, history, and interpretive problem. I am grateful for this well written work.
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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Biblical Reader on November 8, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Good information about the history of the sect but disappointing because it doesn't go into the theology of the writings.
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