Commentary on the Torah


This commentary on the Torah has been compared to the commentary of Rashi in significance:

As exceptional for the 2000’s as Rashi was for the 1000’s, this is the definitive Jewish commentary on the Five Books of Moses.

  • Baruch Halpern, Chaiken Family Chair in Jewish Studies, Pennsylvania State University

A culminating work by a remarkable scholar.  Friedman has had a place in the company of the great scholars of the recent past; now we find him another place of equal value and importance among an older generation of legendary commentators on the Hebrew Scriptures: Kimhi and Abarbanel, Rashbam and Nachmanides, and that perennial master of the written Word, Rashi.

  • David Noel Freedman, General Editor, The Anchor Bible

Like the prototypical commentator, Rashi, Richard Friedman conveys a vast amount of learning with a light touch.  His translations are fresh and vibrant.  His masterful commentary blends scholarly precision, literary sensitivity and spiritual reflection.

  • Daniel Matt, author of God and the Big Bang and The Essential Kabbalah

Other reviewers of Friedman’s fresh translation and commentary on the Five Books of Moses have already mentioned Rashi in the same breath. It is not without reason.

  • Shofar

While the claim to be a modern-day Rashi is quite bold, it is, in fundamental ways, an apt description of Friedman’s method.

  • Prooftexts

In this groundbreaking and insightful new commentary, one of the world’s leading biblical scholars unveils the unity and continuity of the Torah for the modern reader. Richard Elliott Friedman, the bestselling author of Who Wrote the Bible?, integrates the most recent discoveries in biblical archaeology and research with the fruits of years of experience studying and teaching the Bible to illuminate the straightforward meaning of the text — “to shed new light on the Torah and, more important, to open windows through which it sheds its light on us.”

While other commentaries are generally collections of comments by a number of scholars, this is a unified commentary on the Torah by a single scholar, the most unified by a Jewish scholar in centuries. It includes the original Hebrew text, a new translation, and an authoritative, accessibly written interpretation and analysis of each passage that remains focused on the meaning of the Torah as a whole, showing how its separate books are united into one cohesive, all-encompassing sacred literary masterpiece. This landmark work is destined to take its place as a classic in the libraries of lay readers and scholars alike, as we seek to understand the significance of the scriptural texts for our lives today, and for years to come.