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Creating American Reform JudaismLife and Times of Isaac Mayer Wise$
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Sefton D. Temkin

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9781874774457

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781874774457.001.0001

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A Bible History

A Bible History

10. A Bible History
Creating American Reform Judaism

Sefton D. Temkin

Liverpool University Press

This chapter chronicles Isaac Mayer Wise’s attempts to write a history of the Jews. By the end of 1852 he had resolved to do so. And, being unable to find a publisher, he assumed that responsibility as well. The intention was to complete the work in four volumes; in fact, only the first, carrying the story from Abraham to the destruction of the First Temple, saw the light of day. Wise expounded his views as to the distinction between history and religion in his book. Through this work the chapter shows a man who was unorthodox in regard to miracles, and who nevertheless believed firmly in revelation and believed revelation to be enshrined in the Bible; but he equated revelation with reason. Hence, in his view no miracles were necessary to support the religious and moral truths of the Bible.

Keywords:   sacred history, Bible history, Jewish history, religion, miracles, publication history, history book

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