Jewish History: Post-Biblical History: Jewish Sects during the Second Temple:
What were the Jewish sects in the time of the Second Temple?
Josephus, writing about that period, speaks about three principal
"philosophies" of the Jews, associated with groups called the
Sadducees, Pharisees, and Essenes. The first group, to which many of the priests belonged, generally rejected the Oral Torah. The second group, led by the Rabbis, gave rise to the Rabbinic Judaism of today. The third group, many of whose members lived in isolated
communities, is believed by most scholars to have been the sect that wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls.
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