Joshua Bowen: Slavery in the Biblical Period

Joshua Bowen, Did the Old Testament Endorse Slavery? (Mechanicsville, MD: Digital Hammurabi Press, 2020), 196-197. Slavery was not endorsed arbitrarily, as it was part of a common economic system that existed in ancient Israel and in the wider ancient Near East long before the biblical period. Both debt-slavery and chattel-slavery were also part of the... Continue Reading →

Yale Bible Study on First Isaiah

Those readers acquainted with biblical scholarship know that there is a general consensus that the book of Isaiah was not entirely penned by the eighth century BCE prophet. That the book underwent some kind of editing is virtually undisputed. For example, chs. 36-39 contain material lifted directly from the Deuteronomistic History (i.e. 2 Kings 18-20),... Continue Reading →

Carol Redmount: The Exodus and History

Carol A. Redmount, "Bitter Lives: Israel in and out of Egypt," in The Oxford History of the Biblical World, Michael D. Coogan, editor (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998), 87. A study of the Exodus narrative raises many questions about the historicity and historical setting of the Exodus events, but provides few definitive answers. The biblical text... Continue Reading →

Paula Fredriksen: Israel’s God is “Jewish”

Paula Fredriksen, Paul: The Pagans' Apostle (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2017), 115. Israel's god, in Jewish tradition, stands at the apex of humanity. The other elohim bow down to him; he alone is supreme. But his universality is ethnically inflected: this god chooses Israel from among all the other nations, setting them apart... Continue Reading →

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