Although Jewish and Christian tradition almost unanimously recognize Moses as author of the Pentateuch, few issues relating to the OT now are debated as hotly, and in few issues is the gulf between critical and evangelical scholarship so wide.
The documentary hypothesis is one of the models used by biblical scholars to explain the origins and composition of the Torah. A version of the documentary hypothesis, frequently identified with the German scholar Julius Wellhausen, was almost universally accepted for most of the 20th century.
The Documentary Hypothesis is a theory, also known as JEDP, that states that the first five books of the Bible, called the Pentateuch consisting of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy, were not written completely by Moses but by different authors.
The Documentary Hypothesis—the theory that the Pentateuch was a compilation of selections from several different written documents composed at different places and times over a period of five centuries, long after Moses