LONG AGO the question of whether faith and reason are friends or foes was resolved to the satisfaction of most. This commentary takes it for axiomatic that the two are not merely compatible but indeed symbiotic. It embraces, unapologetically, the biblical revelation which, at its core, sets out to replace an older mythological perception of our world with a vision of a unitary creation under the providence of its one divine Creator. That vision, when internalized, leaves no room for superstition but is not at war with reason.
As for methodology, this book pursues a ‘close reading’ of the scriptures that it studies - as well as of the related rabbinic sources. Some commentaries feel it is virtuous to impose agreement between divergent traditions. Here each precious text is allowed to impart its own message.
RABBI SASSOON is the author of והערב נא (Reuben Mass 1996) and Destination Torah (Ktav 2001). An Adventure in Torah, while following broadly in the steps of those precursors, moves well beyond their confines. He is also the author of The Status of Women in Jewish Tradition (Cambridge University Press 2011) and Conflicting Attitudes to Conversion in Judaism, Past and Present (Cambridge University Press 2018).