Where is God in the Megilloth? Brittany N. Melton constructs a dialogue among Ruth, Esther, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Songs centred on this question, in an effort to settle the debate about whether God is present or absent in these books. Their juxtaposition in the Hebrew Bible highlights their shared theme of apparent divine absence, but, paradoxically, traces of God’s presence are unearthed as well.
By examining various aspects of this theme, including the literary absence of God, divine abandonment, God-talk, allusive language, God’s providence, and divine silence, it becomes clear that the ambiguity of divine presence and absence in the Megilloth presents a significant challenge to current conceptualizations of divine presence and absence in the Hebrew Bible.
According to Deuteronomy 7, God commands Israel to exterminate the indigenous population of Canaan. In
The Command to Exterminate the Canaanites: Deuteronomy 7, Arie Versluis offers an analysis and evaluation of this command. Following an exegesis of the chapter, the historical background, possible motives and the place of the nations of Canaan in the Hebrew Bible are investigated.
The theme of religiously inspired violence continues to be a topic of interest. The present volume discusses the consequences of the command to exterminate the Canaanites for the Old Testament view of God and for the question whether the Bible legitimizes violence in the present. Finally, the author shows how he reads this text as a Christian theologian.
The Antiochene Crisis and Jubilee Theology in Daniel’s Seventy Sevens, Dean R. Ulrich explores the joint interest of Daniel 9:24-27 in the Antiochene crisis of the second century B.C.E. and the jubilee theology conveyed by the prophecy’s structure. This study is necessary because previous scholarship, though recognizing the jubilee structure of the seventy sevens, has not sufficiently made the connection between jubilee and the six objectives of Daniel 9:24. Previous scholarship also has not adequately related the book’s interest in Antiochus IV to the hope of jubilee, which involves the full inheritance that God has promised to his people but that they had lost because of their compromises with Antiochus IV.
The Non-Israelite Nations in the Book of the Twelve Daniel Timmer offers the first comprehensive survey of the ‘nations’ in the Minor Prophets. The study approaches this important but highly diverse theme through the lens of conceptual coherence and demonstrates the interrelation of synchronic/holistic and diachronic/compositional approaches. After exploring the theme in each of the individual books of the Twelve and noting the varying degrees of coherence evident in each case, Timmer brings his findings to bear on contemporary understandings of the Twelve as a collection, arguing for the theme’s coherence across the collection on the basis of each book’s unique treatment of the nations.