On the Compositional Models for Ezekiel 38-39: A Response to William Tooman’s Gog of Magog

In: Vetus Testamentum
C. A. Strine University of Sheffield

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William Tooman’s monograph Gog of Magog: Reuse of Scripture and Compositional Technique in Ezekiel 38-39 has quickly become a seminal study of Ezek 38-39. This article examines and critiques Tooman’s influential position that Ezek 38-39 were composed by a method called thematic pastiche, which only emerged in second temple Jewish texts. By showing inconsistencies in the limits of what constitutes thematic pastiche and by re-examining the evidence that Ezek 38-39 depends upon Joel 1:6; 2:27; 3:1-2; Isa 62:2; 66:18-19, this article demonstrates that Joel 3:1-2 and Isa 66:18-19 may even reuse Ezek 39:21, 29 as source texts, thus re-opening the search for which texts provide the compositional model for the Gog oracles. As a logical consequence of that finding, this article highlights problems with Tooman’s widely adopted proposal, albeit provisional, that Ezek 38-39 dates from the 4th to 2nd century bce.

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