The History of the Rechabites— an Initial Commentary

in Journal for the Study of Judaism
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Abstract

This article is the third in a series of studies on The History of the Rechabites. The first, "The Story of Zosimus or The History of the Rechabites?,"1 established the independent identity of this text within the Christian monastic work, The Story of Zosimus, and was a sort of prolegomena to the study of this text. The second, "Towards a Critical-Introduction to The History of the Rechabites,"2 sought to address the standard introductory issues, such as date, original language, provenance and purpose. The present paper seeks to examine the text verse-by-verse, and to offer a commentary on it. Or, rather, an initial commentary. No commentary of any sort has ever been offered on the Greek text of HistRech before, and it would be foolhardy to claim that any one scholar could perceive all the allusions and meanings in a particular text at a first attempt. This commentary, then, is offered in the same spirit as my two previous studies on HistRech: as a step along the way towards unravelling the meaning of this pseudepigraphon about the Rechabites, not as the last word on the subject.

Journal for the Study of Judaism

In the Persian, Hellenistic and Roman Period

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