Who Wrote the Pentateuch?

Rachel Portnoy Bradley shared the following in a comment on Facebook, in response to my post about JEPD as four-part harmony:

In my intro to OT class, we were required to do an “art project” — something creative about what we’d learned that quarter. A group of us got together and sang, “Who wrote the Pentateuch” to the tune of “Who wrote the book of love,” talking about the various sources. I only remember for sure the refrain, “Tell me, tell me who… who who who who… who wrote the Pentateuch……” and then snippets of the verses, like “the J-source was a realist….” and “the E-source was a dreamer….” and “we don’t know much about the P but they were probably all men” or something like that.

If there is no one who actually still has the lyrics to that, perhaps I and/or others should try to recreate it? It seems like it could be pedagogically useful, as well as entertaining.

I also noticed (as one does) that one can easily sing about Abélard and Héloïse to the tune of “Ebony and Ivory.” Just saying…

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  • Gary

    Since this exists on the internet,


    I think it is everyone’s duty to come up with a rebuttal.

    My weak attempt,
    Lyrics to Doe, a deer:

    J, a god, a Yahweh god,
    E, a god called Elohim,
    P, a book, about some priests,
    D, a really different book,
    So, a bunch of doublets show,
    Style and language differ so,
    Think, a book by just one guy (Moses),
    That is, not, even, really so!

    I have no musical talent, but something should exist to counter insanity.

    • I like it! It is definitely far superior to the song you linked to, in accuracy if not in musical realization.

      • Gary

        Thanks. Thought about a chorus but it quickly got too complicated for me.