Wisdom and Law in the Old Testament: The Ordering of Life in Israel and Early Judaism / Edition 2

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This is a completely revised and expanded edition of a classic text. Drawing on recent work on legal and didactic material and including more literary interpretation, Blenkinsopp traces the course of two related key traditions—law and wisdom—throughout the history of Israel in the biblical period. He demonstrates their essential lines of continuity with classical Jewish thought and early Christian theology.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Praise for the first edition: "An excellent little book. It combines serious scholarship with readability."--Mary M. McGlone, Avila College

"An excellent treatment providing both overview and critical depth....Represents the culmination in thinking of one of the finest OT scholars alive today."--Donald G. Schley, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780198755043
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 9/28/1995
  • Series: Oxford Bible Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 7.69 (w) x 5.06 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Sages, Scribes, and Counsellors 1
The Writings: the third section of the Hebrew Bible 1
The many faces of wisdom 5
The professional sage 9
Education in Israel 12
2 Education for Life 18
Proverbs: the book 18
The proverb 20
The religious dimension 24
The ethic of the sages 29
The instruction 31
Acrostics, numerical sayings, riddles 35
Sapiential narrative 39
3 God and the Moral Order 46
The link between act and consequence 46
Political disaster and religious crisis 51
Job 57
Qoheleth 68
The problem remains 79
4 The Growth of Israel's Legal Tradition 84
Ordering life by law 84
Law in early Israel 90
The Covenant Code: Exodus 20:23-23:19 94
The Decalogue 102
The Second Law: Deuteronomy, religious programme and civil constitution 107
5 Law in Early Judaism: Temple Community and Sect 120
The Priestly History 120
Cultic and ritual laws 126
Wisdom and law in the Chronicler's work 133
Law and legal exposition in Jewish sectarianism 140
6 Theological Wisdom 151
The confluence of wisdom and law 151
Job 28: inaccessible wisdom 153
Proverbs 8:22-31: Wisdom, first-born of creation 157
Ecclesiasticus 24:1-29: Torah assimilated to Wisdom 162
The Wisdom of Solomon: towards a new synthesis 167
Apocalyptic wisdom 173
Wisdom in transition: some further developments 179
Select Bibliography 183
Index of Passages Cited 187
General Index 193
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