Among scholars, there was great debate over the date of when and how the various sources came together to form the Pentateuch.
In 1878, Julius Wellhausen published two works: Die Komposition des Hexateuchs and Prolegomena zur Geschichte Israels,
which was based on the work of K. Graf and the evolutionary theory of Darwin.
His classical work became known as the Graf-Wellhausen Hypothesis or JEDP Theory
to indicate the sequential evolution of the various sources. This hypothesis later became known as the Documentary Hypothesis.
Wellhausen perceived that the sources composing biblical literature reflected the historical development of Israel.
His explanation of how the sources evolved and were related to various stages of Israel's development was widely
accepted among scholars.
Unfortunately some religious leaders, both Jewish and Christian, accepted this theory to cast doubt on the credibility of the
Pentateuch in order to justify the priority and importance of their church and traditions.
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