It states essentially the Roman doctrine of purgatory, and asserts the world-wide primacy of the pope as the "true vicar of Christ and the head of the whole Church, the Father and teacher of all Christians"; but, to satisfy the Greeks, inconsistently adds that all the rights and privileges of the Oriental patriarchs are to be maintained unimpaired.
This growth in the conception of the prophetic function is reflected in parts of the Pentateuch, which may be dated with probability as belonging to the period just named; the name of nabhi ¢ is extended to the patriarchs as Yahweh's intimates (Gen.
I-9); afterwards in a series of vivid pictures he gives the story, as tradition told it, of the patriarchs, of Moses and the Exodus, of the journey through the wilderness, and the conquest of Canaan.
It has contributed nothing whatsoever to our knowledge of any Hebrew individual of this period,' and consequently what elements of history underlie the stories in Genesis, in so far as they relate to the Hebrew patriarchs, must still be determined, if at all, by a critical study of the Old Testament.
The figures in parentheses indicate the entire ages assigned to the several patriarchs; these are generally the same in the three texts.