The Community Rule
The Community Rule is the most fully developed collection of rules and regulations found at Qumran. Copies of this work have turned up in Qumran Caves 1 and 4. These finds have altered the way in which scholars view law at Qumran. Not only are there significant differences between the Community Rule and the other sectarian “rulebook,” the Damascus Document (CD, 4Q265-73, 5Q12, 6Q15), but there are also important variations among the different manuscript versions (recensions ) of each work.
The various versions of the Community Rule include discussions of different types of community leaders, include the Moreh ha-Sedeq (The Teacher of Righteousness), the Kohanim (Priests), the Zeqenim (Elders), the Mebaqqer (Examiner), the Paqid (Overseer), and the Maskil (Master). See Community Leaders. The Community Rule also discusses rules for property and commerce, conduct, punishments, and judicial procedures. Additional texts containing rules and regulations include the Rule of the Congregation (1QSa), Blessings (1QSb, 4Q286-290) , Ordinances (4Q159, 4Q513, 4Q514), Decrees (= Rebukes Reported by the Overseer, 4Q477), Harvesting (4Q284a), 4Q265 (formerly “Serekh Damascus”), Communal Ceremony (4Q275), and Four Lots (4Q279.)