Convergence and Differentiation -- Canaanite polytheism to Yahwism
David The Books of Samuel, 1 Kings, and 1 Chronicles are the only sources of information on David, although the Tel Dan Stele (dated c. 850–835 BC) contains the phrase בית דוד (Beit David), read as "House of David", which most scholars take as confirmation of the existence in the mid-9th century BC of a Judean royal dynasty called the House of David. He is depicted as a righteous king, although not without faults, as well as an acclaimed warrior, musician, and poet, traditionally credited for composing many of the psalms contained in the Book of Psalms. David is central to Jewish, Christian, and Islamic doctrine and culture.
Baruch Halpern is the Covenant Foundation Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Georgia. He has been a leader of the archaeological digs at Tel Megiddo since 1992. As an undergraduate at Harvard in 1972, he wrote a political analysis of the Bible, which subsequently influenced research into its authorship.  Major publications include: Baruch Halpern
Biography Thompson was raised as a Catholic and obtained a B.A. from Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, in 1962. He was instructor in theology at Dayton University (1964–65) and Assistant Professor in Old Testament studies the University of Detroit (1967–69). He then studied Catholic Theology under the Catholic faculty at the University of Tübingen, completing his PhD dissertation, "The Historicity of the Patriarchal Narratives: The Quest for the Historical Abraham", in 1971. He also worked as a research fellow on the Tübingen Atlas of the Near East. Thomas L. Thompson
Donald B. Redford (born September 2, 1934) is a Canadian Egyptologist and archaeologist, currently Professor of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies at Pennsylvania State University. He is married to Susan Redford, who is also an Egyptologist currently teaching classes at the university. Professor Redford has directed a number of important excavations in Egypt, notably at Karnak and Mendes. Along with his wife Susan Redford, he is the director of the Akhenaten Temple Project. Biography Donald_B
Martin Noth (August 3, 1902 – May 30, 1968) was a German scholar of the Hebrew Bible who specialized in the pre-Exilic history of the Hebrews. With Gerhard von Rad he pioneered the traditional-historical approach to biblical studies, emphasising the role of oral traditions in the formation of the biblical texts. Life Noth was born in Dresden, Kingdom of Saxony. He studied at the universities of Erlangen, Rostock, and Leipzig and taught at Greifswald and Königsberg. Martin Noth
The Bible Unearthed The Bible Unearthed: Archaeology's New Vision of Ancient Israel and the Origin of Its Sacred Texts is a 2001 book about the archaeology of Israel and its relationship to the origins of the Hebrew Bible. The authors are Israel Finkelstein, Professor of Archaeology at Tel Aviv University, and Neil Asher Silberman, a contributing editor to Archaeology Magazine. Methodology
The Bible Unearthed 1. The Patriarchs
Historical criticism Historical criticism, also known as the historical-critical method or higher criticism, is a branch of literary criticism that investigates the origins of ancient text in order to understand "the world behind the text". The primary goal of historical criticism is to ascertain the text's primitive or original meaning in its original historical context and its literal sense or sensus literalis historicus. The secondary goal seeks to establish a reconstruction of the historical situation of the author and recipients of the text. This may be accomplished by reconstructing the true nature of the events which the text describes. An ancient text may also serve as a document, record or source for reconstructing the ancient past which may also serve as a chief interest to the historical critic.
Documentary hypothesis Diagram of the Documentary Hypothesis. The documentary hypothesis (DH), sometimes called the Wellhausen hypothesis, proposes that the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible) was derived from originally independent, parallel and complete narratives, which were subsequently combined into the current form by a series of redactors (editors). The number of these narratives is usually set at four, but this is not an essential part of the hypothesis.
The Deuteronomist, or simply D, is, according to the documentary hypothesis, one of the theorized sources underlying the Hebrew bible (and the Christian Old Testament), together with the Priestly source, the Jahwist and the Elohist. It is found in the book of Deuteronomy, in the books of Joshua, Judges, Samuel, and Kings (the Deuteronomistic history, or DtrH) and also in the book of Jeremiah. (The adjectives Deuteronomic and Deuteronomistic are essentially interchangeable: if they are distinguished at all, then the first refers to Deuteronomy and the second to the history). Deuteronomist
The Jahwist, or Yahwist, often abbreviated J in exegetical discourse, is the proposed source of the Jahwistic (Yahwistic) traditions of the Pentateuch (Torah). It gets its name from the fact that it characteristically uses the term Yahweh (German Javeh, Hebrew YHWH) for God in the book of Genesis. During most of the 20th century the dominant belief among scholars was that the Torah had been composed by intertwining four originally separate and complete documents, of which the Yahwist was one—this was called the documentary hypothesis. In the last quarter of the 20th century the consensus over the documentary hypothesis unravelled, and although it still has supporters there are now many alternatives. These alternatives can be broadly divided between "fragmentary" and "supplementary" models (hypotheses). Jahwist
Background Modern scholars agree that separate sources and multiple authors underlie the Pentateuch, but there is much disagreement on how these sources were used to write the first five books of the bible. The explanation called the documentary hypothesis dominated much of the 20th century, but the 20th-century consensus surrounding this hypothesis has now broken down. Those who uphold it now tend to do so in a strongly modified form, giving a much larger role to the redactors (editors), who are now seen as adding much material of their own rather than as simply passive combiners of documents. Among those who reject the documentary approach altogether, the most significant revisions have been to combine E with J as a single source, and to see the Priestly source as a series of editorial revisions to that text. The alternatives to the documentary approach can be broadly divided between "fragmentary" and "supplementary" theories. Elohist
The Priestly Source (P) is, according to the documentary hypothesis, one of the sources of the Torah/Pentateuch in the Bible, together with the Yahwist, Elohist and the Deuteronomist. Primarily a product of the post-Exilic period when Judah was a province of the Persian empire (the 5th century BCE), P was written to show that even when all seemed lost, God remained present with Israel. It has been compared to a necklace strung with pearls: "the thread of the necklace is made up of genealogies, itineraries and a terse story line, with a strong interest in chronology ... [t]he pearls are the major stories". Its characteristics include a set of claims that are contradicted by non-Priestly passages and therefore uniquely characteristic: no sacrifice before the institution is ordained by God at Sinai, the exalted status of Aaron and the priesthood, and the use of the divine title El Shaddai before God reveals his name to Moses, to name a few. Background Priestly source