Talk:Old Testament

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Why would the assessment of the Old versus New Testments, coming from an atheist (Nietzche), whose best-known statement is "God is dead," be inserted into this article? His assessment is that the OT appeals to his literary tastes more than the NT does, but so what? He didn't believe any of it, so who cares? This article is about the OT, so why bring the NT into it for the sole purpose of disrespecting it? The NT was first written in Greek, by people whose first language might have been Aramaic, whereas the OT was written in Hebrew by people whose native language was Hebrew, and it may well be better, as literature, for this reason. For religious people, it is the content that is important, and for a bombastic atheist to prefer the literary style of the OT to that of the NT is irrelevant.77Mike77 (talk) 21:27, 10 January 2017 (UTC)

We can start the topic by conceding that, just as no modern expert on Plato is expected to be a Platonist (even of the Middle or Neo- sort), no Bible expert should be expected to accept the ideas it puts forth, far less believe in its god(s) or its divine origin.

— Philip R. Davies, Reading the Bible Intelligently
Quoted by Tgeorgescu (talk) 23:40, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
Bart Ehrman doesn't "believe" any of it either. Nietzche is a well-known philosopher whose views on this topicc are frequently cited by scholars (e.g., here), so why wouldn't we do so as well? Hijiri 88 (やや) 08:34, 4 October 2017 (UTC)


Last I checked, Daniel was in the grouping of minor prophets. @Dimadick: { removed it] stating "The Book of Daniel is not one of the "Prophets" Books of the Old Testament, and dates to the 2nd century BC. It does not fit wth the rest of the sentence". Walter Görlitz (talk) 08:23, 13 November 2018 (UTC)

It is included in the Ketuvim ("writings"), not the [[Nevi'im] ("Prophets"). It dates to the 2nd century BC, specifically the 160s BC) not in the 8th to 6th century BC as the other books mentioned in the sentence. Daniel (biblical figure) is specifically excluded from the Prophets in the main article, because:

  • "He is not a prophet in Judaism"
  • "Daniel is not a prophet in Judaism: prophecy is reckoned to have ended with Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi. In the Hebrew Bible his book is not included under the Prophets (the Hebrew Bible has three sections, Torah, Prophets and Writings), perhaps because its content does not match the prophetic books; but nevertheless the eight copies found among the Dead Sea Scrolls and the additional tales of the Greek text are a testament to Daniel's popularity in ancient times." Dimadick (talk) 08:32, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
Yes, in the Hebrew Bible, Daniel is not one of the prophets. But this article is about the Old Testament, where is is included in the prophets. StAnselm (talk) 09:20, 13 November 2018 (UTC)
That was my underlying point: he is a minor prophet in the various Christian collections. I don't know that he should be listed along with the major prophets and the remainder of the minor prophets should be listed only as a link to that article. Walter Görlitz (talk) 16:15, 13 November 2018 (UTC)

You are not going to address how the restored sentence reads? :"Daniel and the twelve "minor prophets" – were written between the 8th and 6th centuries BC, with the exceptions of Jonah and Daniel" Dimadick (talk) 19:29, 13 November 2018 (UTC)

No need. I see that all sources that support a 6th century writing of the book have been removed. There are scholars who still support that early date. Walter Görlitz (talk) 19:35, 13 November 2018 (UTC)

What's up with the colors in the table?[edit]

The colors are pretty, but without a legend they don't provide any information. Dan Bloch (talk) 19:24, 21 December 2018 (UTC)

On being[edit]

The Old Testament is the first part of Christian Bibles, based primarily upon the Hebrew Bible (or Tanakh), a collection of ancient religious writings by the Israelites believed by most Christians and religious Jews to be the sacred Word of God.

I would personally amend that to read: to be or reflect, because there's a wide range of perspectives with the Christian tradition of just how well the historical text has been rendered over the centuries in modern form.

"Be" implicitly privileges biblical literalists.

"Be or reflect" includes the far more intricate reading on the other side of this exceptionally wide aisle. And I do intend "intricate" to read descriptively here: one woman's sublime elaborations are another man's needless epicycle. Opinions differ. That's my point.

There are many in this sphere who believe—and who loudly proclaim—that the road to hell is paved with nuance; this being a message which is explicitly schismatic, and not aimed at anyone already firmly ensconced in the "be" camp, so who is it aimed at, and why is their slant so poorly represented in this lead sentence by this simplistic language?

MaxEnt 18:09, 2 February 2019 (UTC)

I could also live with a parenthetical: "to be (or substantially reflect)" though I find that wording somewhat clunky in context. — MaxEnt 18:11, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
  • Oppose the change. There are already restrictive words: "most Christians" not "all Christians" and "religious Jews" not all again. The lede, as MaxEnt alluded to, should be a summary of the article and a quick read. If you want to go into the various views later, that would be acceptable. Walter Görlitz (talk) 19:41, 2 February 2019 (UTC)

When was the term first used?[edit]

I just read a related joke by one of the late-night comics but it is a valid question.— Vchimpanzee • talk • contributions • 20:55, 4 April 2019 (UTC)