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Archive for the ‘Pentateuch’ Category

The Formation of the Pentateuch

In Bernard M. Levinson, Dalit Rom-Shiloni, HB/OT, Jan C. Gertz, Konrad SCHMID, Mohr Siebeck, Pentateuch, Uncategorized, William L. Kelly on June 27, 2017 at 11:54 pm

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2017.06.13 | Gertz, Jan C., Bernard M. Levinson, Dalit Rom-Shiloni, and Konrad Schmid. The Formation of the Pentateuch: Bridging the Academic Cultures of Europe, Israel, and North America. Forschungen zum Alten Testament 111. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2016. pp. xi + 1204. ISBN: 978-3-16-153883-4.

Review by William L. Kelly, University of Edinburgh.

The Pentateuch, as the editors of this volume rightly point out, is one of the foundational texts in the humanities. For critical scholarship on the Hebrew Bible, few areas of research could claim to be as foundational, and equally few involve such a tremendous range of critical issues, methods, and approaches. Where did this literature come from? How was it written and from what sources did its writers draw? When did it become ‘scripture’ and what does that designation mean? And, considering the various paradigms and hypotheses to have emerged in the last century of scholarship, how can a diverse field build toward consensus? Addressing questions such as these with fifty-six peer-reviewed essays and more than twelve-hundred pages,The Formation of the Pentateuch is a substantial and valuable contribution to a vital area of study. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Testing of God’s Sons: The Refining of Faith as a Biblical Theme

In B&H Academic, Genesis, Gregory S. SMITH, HB/OT, Kerry Lee, Linguistics, Pentateuch on September 3, 2014 at 8:29 pm

2014.9.15 | Gregory S. Smith. The Testing of God’s Sons: The Refining of Faith as a Biblical Theme. Nashville, TN: B&H Academic, 2014. pp. xviii + 222. ISBN: 9780805464184.

Review by Kerry Lee.

Many thanks to B&H Academic for providing a review copy.

The Testing of God’s Sons by Gregory S. Smith is primarily an exploration of the literary theme of “testing”, a theme that is especially important in Genesis but that, Smith also argues, is a unifying theme in the entire Pentateuch and even the entire Christian Bible. Additionally, to support his case, he engages in a limited semantic field analysis of common Hebrew terms that communicate the idea of testing. He argues that underlying the use of these terms is a metallurgical metaphor, and Smith finds that one particular term that is important to his literary analysis of the theme of testing in the Bible, Hebrew bāḥan, is connected to the idea of a “touchstone”, meaning the purpose of the testing is authentication (more than “refining” or “revealing”). Read the rest of this entry »

Pentateuch, Hexateuch, or Enneateuch?: Identifying Literary Works in Genesis through Kings

In Biblical Criticism, Genesis, HB/OT, Hermeneutics, Intertextuality, Kerry Lee, Konrad SCHMID, Pentateuch, Scribal habits, Scripture, Septuagint, Society of Biblical Literature, Thomas B. DOZEMAN, Thomas RÖMER on June 11, 2012 at 5:07 pm

2012.06.12 | Thomas B. Dozeman, Thomas Römer, and Konrad Schmid, eds. Pentateuch, Hexateuch, or Enneateuch?: Identifying Literary Works in Genesis through Kings. Ancient Israel and its Literature 8. Atlanta: SBL, 2011. x + 313 pages. $39.95. ISBN: 9781589835429.

Reviewed by Kerry Lee, University of Edinburgh.

RBECS would like to thank SBL for kindly providing us with a review copy.

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Pentateuch, Hexateuch, or Enneateuch? is a collaboration between the Pentateuch and Deuteronomistic History Sections of SBL Read the rest of this entry »

These Are The Generations: Identity, Covenant, And The ‘Toledot’ Formula

In Bloomsbury, Genesis, HB/OT, Kerry Lee, Matthew A. THOMAS, Pentateuch on March 9, 2012 at 9:05 pm

2012.03.07 | Matthew A. Thomas. These Are The Generations: Identity, Covenant, And The ‘Toledot’ Formula. Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies 551. New York: T&T Clark, 2011. xviii + 153 pages. £65. ISBN: 9780567151414.

Reviewed by Kerry Lee, University of Edinburgh.

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In this published version of his PhD thesis, Matthew Thomas, who serves as adjunct professor at Fuller Theological Seminary and Azusa Pacific University, has engaged the problem of the relationship between the macro-structure of Genesis (and indeed, of the whole Pentateuch) and the toledot formulae, a long noted recurring feature with particular density in Genesis. Read the rest of this entry »

Arie van der Kooij, “The Translators of the Pentateuch in Greek”

In Arie van der KOOIJ, David J. Larsen, HB/OT, Pentateuch, SEMINAR REPORTS, Septuagint, St Andrews on December 7, 2011 at 8:28 pm

This is a report on a paper presented by Prof Arie van der Kooij (Emeritus), Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, Universiteit Leiden, at the Biblical Studies Research Seminar at St Andrews, 1 December 2011. The list of forthcoming papers in this seminar at St Andrews is available here.

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Professor van der Kooij, of Leiden University, gave a fascinating paper at the University of St Andrews’  Biblical Studies Research Seminar.  His topic was one that has not been discussed in detail at the seminar in recent years, which made his paper even more intriguing.  Professor van der Kooij’s thesis was that, contrary to other current theories, when evaluating the character of the translators of the Pentateuch into Greek we should take the perspective of the ancient Letter of Aristeus — that they were learned, noble persons working under the direction of the High Priest from Jerusalem. Read the rest of this entry »

Nicholas Wyatt, “After Death Has Us Parted: Encounters Between the Living and the Dead in the Ancient Semitic World”

In Abraham, Edinburgh, HB/OT, Kerry Lee, Nicholas WYATT, Pentateuch, SEMINAR REPORTS on November 1, 2011 at 12:28 pm

A report on a paper given by Professor Nicholas Wyatt (Honorary Professorial Fellow, Professor Emeritus, University of Edinburgh) at the Biblical Studies Seminar at New College, the University of Edinburgh, 28 October 2011.

The list of forthcoming papers in the Biblical Studies Seminars at Edinburgh can be downloaded from here. You can find RBECS on facebook, here.

Professor Wyatt’s paper drew together disparate strands from first and second millennium BCE texts from across Mesopotamia and the Levant in order to identify common elements in their post-funerary practices, or ritual “Encounters Between the Living and the Dead.”

The bulk of the paper centered around investigating the eastern Mesopotamian practice of the kispum, a ritual feast wherein a deceased person, most especially but not exclusively a deceased king, was remembered and “fed.” Read the rest of this entry »

John Barton, “Law and Narrative in the Pentateuch”

In Edinburgh, HB/OT, John BARTON, Kerry Lee, Pentateuch, SEMINAR REPORTS on October 15, 2011 at 11:20 pm

A report on a paper given by Professor John Barton (Oriel College, Oxford University) at the Biblical Studies Seminar at New College, the University of Edinburgh, 14 October 2011.

The list of forthcoming papers in the Biblical Studies Seminars at Edinburgh can be downloaded from here. You can find RBECS on facebook, here.

Professor Barton’s paper was an exploration of the problem of the relationship between the legal and narrative texts of the Pentateuch. The paper consisted of six points/sections: (1) an introduction of the problem, (2) a review of the Jewish interpretive tradition which has foregrounded the legal texts, (3) a review of the Christian tradition which, in contrast, foregrounded the narrative texts but in a prophetic light, (4) an exploration of two broad purposes for narrative with a national scope (such as, but not limited to, royals annals), one positive and one negative, which would provide a rubric by which to foreground the narrative texts, (5) a third suggestion for the purpose of narratives which integrates the legal texts for the modern reader, and finally (6) a look ahead to some work which is breaking down the generic barriers between narrative and law, perhaps providing yet another solution to the problem. Read the rest of this entry »