The discovery of the Book of the Law (2 Chr 34:14-34:18)

“While they were bringing out the money that had been brought into the house of the Yahweh, the priest Hilkiah found the book of the law of Yahweh given through Moses. Hilkiah said to the secretary Shaphan. ‘I have found the book of the law in the house of the Yahweh.’ Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan. Shaphan brought the book to the king. He further reported to the king. ‘All that was committed to your servants they are doing. They have emptied out the money that was found in the house of the Yahweh. They have delivered it into the hand of the overseers and the workers.’ The secretary Shaphan informed the king. ‘The priest Hilkiah has given me a book.’ Shaphan then read it aloud to the king.”

This is almost word for word from to 2 Kings, chapter 22. When the secretary Shaphan was talking with the priest Hilkiah about the money for repairing the temple, Hilkiah told him that he found this book of the law in the Temple. Then when Shaphan reported back to the king about the money being spent on the Temple, he told the king that he had gotten this book from Hilkiah. He then read the book out loud to the king. This was probably the first edition of Deuteronomy. This book was really a scroll. In fact, this may be the beginning of biblical literature, perhaps even written at this time. Writing itself was not common. Remember that all books or scrolls were hand written, since this proceeds the time of the printing press or computers by about 2,000 to 2,500 years.

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