JEDP - Documentary Hypothesis



"The documentary hypothesis (also known as JEDP hypothesis) proves that Moses did not write the Pentateuch." 



A hypothesis can't really prove anything. A hypothesis is an idea waiting testing. Ashley, fellow of the University of Chicago philosophy department, explains the nature of scientific hypothesis:

"In the more extended scientific process we find data contradicting an old theory and a new hypothesis arising to account for them. The hypothesis is tested, and along with its  verification we have the rejection, or rather the modification, of the old theory." (Myron Lucius Ashley. The Nature of Hypothesis. Chicago: University of Chicago, 1903. p 152.

A hypothesis is a hypo thesis. (could you have guessed?) It is a pre-thesis; a thesis waiting verification. Until it is verified, it does not disprove the "old" theory that Moses did indeed write the Pentateuch.

The interesting thing to note about the theory itself is that it is based almost solely on the assumptions of Julius Wellhausen (the founder of the theory) and not on what archeology has revealed about Hebrew culture. Harrison, Professor of Old Testament at Wycliffe College, points out,

" is quite evident that his theory of the Pentateuchal origins would have been vastly different... had Wellhausen chosen to take account of the archaeological material available for study in his day... they [Wellhausen and his followers] depended almost exclusively upon their own view of the culture and religious history of the  Hebrews for purposes of biblical interpretation." (R.K. Harrison. Introduction to the Old Testament. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdman's Publishing Company,1970. p 509. Quoted: Josh McDowell. Evidence that Demands a verdict, Vol. II, revised ed. Here's Life Publishers, 1975. p 51.)

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