The Scepter and the Star. Messianism in Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls. 2nd ed.

Author: John J.Collins
ISBN: 978 0 80283223 8
Date: 2010
Price: ?18.99
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Publisher: Eerdmans/Alban Books

Professor Collins of the Yale Divinity School here offers an updated edition of his classic work of 1995. It used to be commonly thought that there existed a uniform system of messianic expectation in ancient Israel. This consensus has largely broken down in recent decades, especially where the evidence of the Dead Sea Scrolls is taken seriously. The Scrolls were the possession of a sectarian movement but some of the texts are non-sectarian and some predate the foundation of Qumran. The Scrolls are evidence not only of the beliefs of an anti-Hasmonean faction (the Essenes?) but of Jewish beliefs more widely. ?The Scrolls?, says Collins, ?indicate a greater diversity of messianic expectations in Judaism around the turn of the era than was apparent before their discovery.?

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