Oral Torah

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In the scheme developed in Rabbinic Judaism there is a Written Torah, the Pentateuch, and an Oral Torah. The doctrine runs that Moses received at Sinai a detailed elaboration of the laws and doctrines contained in the Written Torah and this is the Oral Torah. But the term denotes much more than the original revelation. All the later teachings of the sages and teachers of Israel are embraced by the Oral Torah, seen as a continuous process. The Mishnah and the Talmud are thus the great depositories of the Oral Torah (see AUTHORITY, HALAKHAH, and TANNAIM AND AMORAIM).

Subjects: Judaism and Jewish Studies.

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