The Law in Jubilees


Reading Acts

In Jubilees, the law is established in creation, therefore “obedience to the Law is the central message of Jubilees” (Wintermute, “Jubilees,” OTP 2:40).  The writer desires to place as many Jewish customs and religious features as early in the history as possible. The earlier a practice can be rooted in history, the better. For example, the purity laws concerning a pregnancy (3:8-14) are found in the creation narrative alongside marriage and Sabbath. Adam is created unclean and must wait forty days before entering the garden, Eve must wait eighty (3:8-14, the number of days after which a woman is to present herself at the temple for ritual cleansing after the birth of a male and female).

Jubilees 2:19-20 selects phrases from Exodus on Sabbath and inserts them into the creation story.

And he gave us a great sign, the sabbath day, so that we might work…

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