THE WRITING OF THE TORAH
Is the Torah we have in hand today the exact replica of the Torah revealed by God? Even though the author of the present book may profess another creed, he deems it a human duty to pass in review impartially the stages that the Torah has gone through from the moment of his first penning up until now.
God's meeting with Moses on Mount Sinai in 1312 B.C. which lasted 40 days and nights is of towering importance. This incident is confirmed by the Qur'an (Surah 7/145) The Torah states that the divine Law had been engraved on two stones. They were re-inscribed. Later these stones were placed in the Ark of the Covenant and were lost when the Ark was lost.
Revelations did not cease to come down during Moses' forty years in the desert. The Ark had been preserved in a chest which was kept in the Congregation Tent for about 500 years and for another 400 years in Solomon's Temple. During the war waged in 422 B.C. with Babylonians, the Temple was destroyed, and along with it, the Ark, as well as the Torah. The Torah had to be re-inscribed.
« Many people are unaware, and Edmond Jacob point this out that there were originally a number of texts and not just one. Around the third century B.C., there were least three forms of the Hebrew text: the text which was to become the Masoretic text, the text which was used, in part at least, for the Greek translation, and the Samaritan Pentateuch. In the First Century BC there was a tendency toward the establishment of a single text, but it was not until a century after Christ that he Biblical text was definitely established.» (Bucaille İbid p. 2)
The Tanakh is considered as a perfect historical and literary record of the Jewish people from the very beginnings until Christianity. The oral tradition that started to be committed to paper in tenth century before Christ took its final form in the first first century Anno Domini.
Prof. Dr. Ali Erbaş from the Theology Department of the University of Sakarya (www.if.sakarya.edu.tr/SORU CEVAP) writes as follows: Eliot Friedman from the University of California U.S.A., in his book Who Wrote the Torah? published in 1987 has created unrest in the Judeo-Christian world. Prof. Friedman asserts that the five books that constitute the Torah had been written by five different theologians and that they were not the same book that had been revealed to Moses. He further pointed out that there were many contradictions between the said books and in each of the said books. Gottfried Eichorn, the German poet and philosopher Herder and Dr. Graham Scroggie from the Moody Bible Institute have arrived at the same conclusion. The scholars concur on the fact that the human factor is involved to a great scale in the penning of the Torah. The Ten Commandments believed to have been written by the 'finger of God' have two versions (Exodus 20/1-21 and Deuteronomy 5/1-30). In essence they are the same with slight divergences. As during the transition from the oral to the written expression there had been additions, the rendering of the incidents necessarily underwent alterations and have been the subject of much criticism. Nevertheless, the important contribution to the human history of these books that conveyed God's commandments and admonitions to us is incontestable. The Qur'an revealed in the seventh century corroborates the divine nature of the Torah compiled by the contribution of the prophets. (See This Book, The Qur'an's view of the Israelites)
INCONGRUITIES IN THE TORAH