Assorted Manuscripts 4Q471

In the fragments catalogued as 4Q471 we once again face the question of whether certain fragments have been properly assigned to their original scroll. Because of similar handwriting and a presumed connection with the War Scroll (text 8), scrolls editors have grouped together eight small fragments and called them a textÑ4Q471. We believe that this was a mistake. These fragments do not belong to one manuscript, but rather to four. Moreover, none of the fragments is related to the War Scroll.

Preliminary study suggests that of the following fragments, only 2 and 4 represent the same manuscript. The four works before us are respectively (1) a discussion of the messianic king’s royal bodyguard; (2) a condemnation of improper conduct of holy war; (3) a hymn praising God, and (4) the boast of a man claiming to be reckoned among the gods.

Two explanations have been suggested for frag. 1. The first suggests a relationship to the first lines of col. 2 of the War Scroll (text 8) detailing the various groups that served in the Temple or its precincts during the sabbatical year (E. and H. Eshel, 1992). The reconstruction below echoes the Temple Scroll 57:5,-11 (text 131). This passage reveals the makeup of the king’s royal guard.

Frag. 1 [ . . . ] from all tha[t . . . ] 2[ . . . And from the priests, twelve,] each man from his brothers from the sons of 3[Aaron….] and they shall be with him continually, and k[eep] 4[him from all manner of sin. And twelve commanders from] each tribe, a man 5[per household. They shall be with him continually, men who are pu]re. And from [the] Levites tw[elve] 6[ . . . and they shall b]e sit[ting with hi]m continually for 7tjudgment and Torah . . . in] order that they might be teaching [him . . . ] 8[ . . . ] division[s:. . . ]

This fragment warns against engaging in a war not blessed by God. This theme reveals a possible relation to Numbers 14:4~45.

Frag. 2 1[ . . . ] from the time You command them not to 2[engage in war….] you have proved false to His covenant 3[ … and yo]u said,”Let us figh’: His battles, for He has redeemed us 4[from the hand of our enemy . . . ” . . . JI your [mighty me]n shall be humiliated for they do not know that [the Lorcl] has rejected 5[you . . . ] you presume to make war. And as for you, you are regarded 6[with the men of injustice.”You have staggered as a drunkard] in hiis vomit” (Isa. 19:14).
Ask for righteous Judgment and [true] service 7[ . . . ] you exalt yourselves. He has chosen [you . . . ] for the cry 8[ . . . ] And you have substituted [bitter for sweeg and sweet 9[for bitter” (Isa. 5:20). . . . ]

Keep the covenant of God: reject evil and choose good.

Frag. 4 [ . . . ] 2[ . . . ] So as to keep the testimonies of Your (?) covenant [ . . . ] 3[ . . . the One who has gua]rded all of their armies with patien[ce . . -I 4[ . . . ] and to restrain their heart from all of [their] wo[rks . . . ] 5[ . . . se]rvants of darkness. For judgment [ . . . ] 6[ . . . ] in the guilt of his lot [ . . . ] 7[ . . . to reject goo]d and to choose evil and to [ ~ . ] 8[ . . to reject everything whicy God hates. And He established [ . . the good which [the Lord has given you . . . ] [ . . . ] anger of vengeance [ . . . ]

This scrap of a hymnic or liturgical text praises God for righteous judgment and the forgiveness of sins.

Frag. 5 1[ . . . ] God, and [ . . . ] 2[ . . . ] eternal [light]. And He appointed us (or me)[ . . . ] 3[ . . . He jud]ges His people with justice and [ . . . ] 4[ . . . and to give th]em [understanding] in all the statutes of G[od . . . ] 5[ . . . He has forgiven] us o[ur] sins [ . . . ] 6[ . . . in the dominion ofl Belial [ . . . ]

This is one of three manuscripts that evidence the boast of a man to be reckoned among the gods. The fact that the most complete of these texts, 4Q427frag. 7, col 1, is clearly coincident with colt 26 of the Thanksgiing Psalms (text 3) suggests that the speaker is none other than the Teacher of Righteousness, the founder of the Yahad (also see 4Q491 frag. 11, colt 1; text 8).

Frag. 6 [expounding [ . . . And who is] 21ike me? [The . . . ] shall cease [ . . . And to whom] 3shall you compare me in my teaching [ . . . ] 4Who is like me among the gods [ . . . the utterance] 5Of my lips who can endure, who [can summon me . . . ] 6the beloved of the king, an[cient] companion [ . . . ] 7no one compares. Who [ . . . ] 8fine go[d (?) . . . ]

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