Who Wrote the Torah? (Part 2)

Question

You’ve answered my question: who wrote the Torah: “The Torah was given by God to Moses at Sinai – as Pirkei Avot begins – and was written down by Moses in the manner discussed in the Talmud. The Ten Commandments were written by God on the Tablets as is explicit in the Chumash” Thank you. If Moshe wrote the Torah, there were portions that were to happen in the future (past the Har Sinai meeting). So Moshe was given the Torah to inscribe including the future components yet to still occur?! Thanks you~

16 years

Answers

  1. Good question. I thought the first question might be setting up for something extra!

    The Talmud in Tractate Gittin 60a teaches two opinions of how Moshe wrote the Torah.

    One view is that he wrote it “megilla, megilla” while the other opinion is that he wrote it “chatuma”.

    There is a dispute between Rashi and Tosefot (good idea to see the Maharam on Tosefot as well) regarding the meaning of these two views. Megilla seems to mean “scroll” or “revealed” whereas “Chatuma” literally means “sealed” or “complete”.

    According to Rashi the one who says the Torah was written “megilla, megilla” holds that Moshe wrote the Torah as events and matters were told to him by God in the desert throughout the 40 years. The words of the Torah that he was to write were told to him as they went along, and he wrote them “bit by bit”. On the other hand, the view that Moshe wrote it “chatuma” maintains that he remembered the Torah orally throughout the 40 years and wrote them all together only at the end of that time in the desert.

    Therefore, according to all opinions Moshe wrote the events in the Torah only after they occurred and were told to him to write.

    I hope this is clear and perhaps you would find the Gemara cited, and the commentaries, to be even more helpful.

    Best wishes from the AskTheRabbi.org Team