Bible Myths and their Parallels in other Religions Being a Comparison of the Old and New Testament Myths and Miracles with those of the Heathen Nations of Antiquity Considering also their Origin and Meaning
Page: 65Mosaic party at that day were making thrown into the form of laws. It was by King Josiah that this book was first introduced and proclaimed as authoritative.[93:4] It was soon afterwards wove into the work of the first Pentateuchian writer, and at the same time [Pg 94]"a few new passages" were added, some of which related to Joshua, the successor of Moses.[94:1]
At this period in Israel's history, Jehovah had become almost forgotten, and "other gods" had taken his place.[94:2] The Mosaic party, so called—who worshiped Jehovah exclusively—were in the minority, but when King Amon—who was a worshiper of Moloch—died, and was succeeded by his son Josiah, a change immediately took place. This young prince, who was only eight years old at the death of his father, the Mosaic party succeeded in winning over to their interests. In the year 621 B. C., Josiah, now in the eighteenth year of his reign, began a thorough reformation which completely answered to the ideas of the Mosaic party.[94:3]
It was during this time that the second Pentateuchian writer wrote, and he makes Moses speak as the law-giver. This writer was probably Hilkiah, who claimed to have found a book, written by Moses, in the temple,[94:4] although it had only just been drawn up.[94:5]
The principal objections which were brought against the claims of Hilkiah, but which are not needed in the present age of inquiry, was that Shaphan and Josiah read it off, not as if it were an old book, but as though it had been recently written, when any person who is acquainted, in the slightest degree, with language, must know that a man could not read off, at once, a book written eight hundred years before. The phraseology would necessarily be so altered by time as to render it comparatively unintelligible.
We must now turn to the third Pentateuchian writer, whose writings were published 444 b. c.
At that time Ezra (or Ezdras) added to the work of his two predecessors a series of laws and narratives which had been drawn up by some of the priests in Babylon.[94:6] This "series of laws and narratives," which was written by "some of the (Israelitish) priests in Babylon," was called "The Book of Origins" (probably containing the Babylonian account of the "Origin of Things," or the "Creation"). Ezra brought the book from Babylon to Jerusalem. He made some modifications in it and constituted it a code of law for Israel, dove-tailing it into those parts of the Pentateuch which existed before. A few alterations and additions were [Pg 95]subsequently made, but these are of minor importance, and we may fairly say that Ezra put the Pentateuch into the form in which we have it (about 444