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DID MOSES
WRITE THE FIRST FIVE
BOOKS OF THE BIBLE?

The evidence that Moses did not write the Torah
taken from the Pentateuch


Jacob's name change to Israel
and the multiple traditions of Bethel
the story of Jacob's ladder


     If Moses wrote the Bible then Moses was responsible for writing doublets of various stories, each of which was supposed to explain how some certain event took place. As an example of multiple traditions and strange editing, consider the traditions surrounding Jacob, his name change to Israel, and the multiple traditions of the naming of Bethel, a closely related story. We are told that God says that Jacob is to be called Jacob no longer.

"There he built an altar, and called the place Elbethel, because there God had revealed himself to him when he fled from his brother ... God appeared to Jacob again, when he came from Paddanaram, and blessed him. And God said to him, "Your name is Jacob; no longer shall your name be called Jacob, but Israel shall be your name." So his name was called Israel." (Genesis Chapter 35 verse 7)

     Their is a doublet of this story. After wrestling with an angel Jacob is renamed Israel.

"Then he said, ‘Your name shall no more be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed.'" (Genesis Chapter 32 verse 28)

     Later God calls him Jacob.

"And God spoke to Israel in visions of the night, and said, "Jacob, Jacob." And he said, "Here am I." (Genesis Chapter 46 verse 2)

     There is also a doublet relating a different tradition of the naming of Bethel. Jacob has a vision and sees the famous Jacob's ladder stretching to heaven.

"Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, "Surely YAHWEH is in this place; and I did not know it." And he was afraid, and said, "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven." So Jacob rose early in the morning, and he took the stone which he had put under his head and set it up for a pillar and poured oil on the top of it. He called the name of that place Bethel; but the name of the city was Luz at the first." (Genesis Chapter 28 verse 16)

     However Abraham visits Bethel before it was ever called Bethel, long before Jacob or Jacob's father was born..

"Thence Abraham removed to the mountain on the east of Bethel, and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east; and there he built an altar to YAHWEH and called on the name of YAHWEH. And he journeyed on from the Negeb as far as Bethel, to the place where his tent had been at the beginning, between Bethel and Ai." (Genesis Chapter 12 verse 8, Genesis Chapter 13 verse 3)

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