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4 definitions found
 for Pentateuch
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Pentateuch \Pen"ta*teuch\, n. [L. pentateuchus, Gr. ?; ? (see
     Penta-) + ? a tool, implement, a book, akin to ? to
     prepare, make ready, and perh. to E. text. See Five, and
     The first five books of the Old Testament, collectively; --
     called also the Law of Moses, Book of the Law of Moses,
     [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

      n 1: the first of three divisions of the Hebrew Scriptures
           comprising the first five books of the Hebrew Bible
           considered as a unit [syn: Torah, Pentateuch, Laws]

From Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary :

     the five-fold volume, consisting of the first five books of the
     Old Testament. This word does not occur in Scripture, nor is it
     certainly known when the roll was thus divided into five
     portions Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy.
     Probably that was done by the LXX. translators. Some modern
     critics speak of a Hexateuch, introducing the Book of Joshua as
     one of the group. But this book is of an entirely different
     character from the other books, and has a different author. It
     stands by itself as the first of a series of historical books
     beginning with the entrance of the Israelites into Canaan. (See JOSHUA.)
       The books composing the Pentateuch are properly but one book,
     the "Law of Moses," the "Book of the Law of Moses," the "Book of
     Moses," or, as the Jews designate it, the "Torah" or "Law." That
     in its present form it "proceeds from a single author is proved
     by its plan and aim, according to which its whole contents refer
     to the covenant concluded between Jehovah and his people, by the
     instrumentality of Moses, in such a way that everything before
     his time is perceived to be preparatory to this fact, and all
     the rest to be the development of it. Nevertheless, this unity
     has not been stamped upon it as a matter of necessity by the
     latest redactor: it has been there from the beginning, and is
     visible in the first plan and in the whole execution of the
     work.", Keil, Einl. i.d. A. T.
       A certain school of critics have set themselves to reconstruct
     the books of the Old Testament. By a process of "scientific
     study" they have discovered that the so-called historical books
     of the Old Testament are not history at all, but a miscellaneous
     collection of stories, the inventions of many different writers,
     patched together by a variety of editors! As regards the
     Pentateuch, they are not ashamed to attribute fraud, and even
     conspiracy, to its authors, who sought to find acceptance to
     their work which was composed partly in the age of Josiah, and
     partly in that of Ezra and Nehemiah, by giving it out to be the
     work of Moses! This is not the place to enter into the details
     of this controversy. We may say frankly, however, that we have
     no faith in this "higher criticism." It degrades the books of
     the Old Testament below the level of fallible human writings,
     and the arguments on which its speculations are built are
     altogether untenable.
       The evidences in favour of the Mosaic authorship of the
     Pentateuch are conclusive. We may thus state some of them
       (1.) These books profess to have been written by Moses in the
     name of God (Ex. 17:14; 24:3, 4, 7; 32:7-10, 30-34; 34:27; Lev.
     26:46; 27:34; Deut. 31:9, 24, 25).
       (2.) This also is the uniform and persistent testimony of the
     Jews of all sects in all ages and countries (comp. Josh. 8:31,
     32; 1 Kings 2:3; Jer. 7:22; Ezra 6:18; Neh. 8:1; Mal. 4:4; Matt.
     22:24; Acts 15:21).
       (3.) Our Lord plainly taught the Mosaic authorship of these
     books (Matt. 5:17, 18; 19:8; 22:31, 32; 23:2; Mark 10:9; 12:26;
     Luke 16:31; 20:37; 24:26, 27, 44; John 3:14; 5:45, 46, 47; 6:32,
     49; 7:19, 22). In the face of this fact, will any one venture to
     allege either that Christ was ignorant of the composition of the
     Bible, or that, knowing the true state of the case, he yet
     encouraged the people in the delusion they clung to?
       (4.) From the time of Joshua down to the time of Ezra there
     is, in the intermediate historical books, a constant reference
     to the Pentateuch as the "Book of the Law of Moses." This is a
     point of much importance, inasmuch as the critics deny that
     there is any such reference; and hence they deny the historical
     character of the Pentateuch. As regards the Passover, e.g., we
     find it frequently spoken of or alluded to in the historical
     books following the Pentateuch, showing that the "Law of Moses"
     was then certainly known. It was celebrated in the time of
     Joshua (Josh. 5:10, cf. 4:19), Hezekiah (2 Chr. 30), Josiah (2
     Kings 23; 2 Chr. 35), and Zerubbabel (Ezra 6:19-22), and is
     referred to in such passages as 2 Kings 23:22; 2 Chr. 35:18; 1
     Kings 9:25 ("three times in a year"); 2 Chr. 8:13. Similarly we
     might show frequent references to the Feast of Tabernacles and
     other Jewish institutions, although we do not admit that any
     valid argument can be drawn from the silence of Scripture in
     such a case. An examination of the following texts, 1 Kings 2:9;
     2 Kings 14:6; 2 Chr. 23:18; 25:4; 34:14; Ezra 3:2; 7:6; Dan.
     9:11, 13, will also plainly show that the "Law of Moses" was
     known during all these centuries.
       Granting that in the time of Moses there existed certain oral
     traditions or written records and documents which he was
     divinely led to make use of in his history, and that his writing
     was revised by inspired successors, this will fully account for
     certain peculiarities of expression which critics have called
     "anachronisms" and "contradictions," but in no way militates
     against the doctrine that Moses was the original author of the
     whole of the Pentateuch. It is not necessary for us to affirm
     that the whole is an original composition; but we affirm that
     the evidences clearly demonstrate that Moses was the author of
     those books which have come down to us bearing his name. The
     Pentateuch is certainly the basis and necessary preliminary of
     the whole of the Old Testament history and literature. (See DEUTERONOMY.)

From Hitchcock's Bible Names Dictionary (late 1800's) :

  Pentateuch, the five books of Moses

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