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Robert Jones

Abstract

This paper evaluates the attitudes toward the contemporary Jerusalem priesthood and cult on evidence in the Visions of Amram. To the extent that this issue has been treated, scholars have generally argued that the Visions of Amram originated among groups that were hostile to the Aaronid priesthood. Such treatments, however, have left some of the most germane fragments unexamined, several of which deal directly with matters pertaining to the cult, Aaron, and his offspring (4Q547 5 1–3; 8 2–4; 9 5–7; 4Q545 4 16–19). My study incorporates these fragments into the larger discussion, and in so doing demonstrates that many of the views expressed in the secondary literature require revision. My analysis shows that, though the social location of the Visions of Amram is difficult to determine, we should not be too quick to dismiss the possibility that the writer was a supporter of the contemporary status quo in the temple, given the elevated status afforded to both Aaron and his eternal posterity throughout the text.

“A Fall of Snow Maintains the Warmth of the Earth”

Léon Brunschvicg in the Eyes of Emmanuel Levinas and the Search for Universalism in Judaism

Hanoch Ben-Pazi

Abstract

This essay attempts to shed light upon the European Jewish partnership in the second half of the twentieth century, through an analysis of the persona of the philosopher Léon Brunschvicg, one of the major teachers of Emmanuel Levinas. Beyond the inherent interest in his intellectual stature and prominence as a philosopher, our study will reveal an additional aspect of the French-Jewish partnership at the turn of the century, and will reconsider the import of assimilation—as an enabler of Jewish involvement in Western civilization. The moral and intellectual appreciation that Emmanuel Levinas had for his teacher, Léon Brunschvicg, motivated him to call for a return to Jewish cultural discourse, and to honor the role models whose Judaism found expression not through their national or religious commitments, but rather through their universal concerns.

Moshe Bar-Asher

Abstract

In the phrase yom haqqahal, used three times in Deuteronomy, qahal functions as a verbal noun. The correct translation is “the day of assembling.”

James K. Aitken

Abstract

It has been recognized in recent scholarship that the Greek translation of Sirach is subtle in its use of word-play and inner-Greek allusion. One such case, the story of the wandering man in Sir (31)34:9-13, can be shown to be a narration of two types of person, the one who wanders for positive learning and the one who errs and is in danger of death. It is thus not the personal experience of the author who has the freedom to travel in the new Hellenistic empires, but a moral tale modelled upon the two types of Odysseus that developed in the Greek tradition. This demonstrates the crafting of the source by the translator on the discourse level and hints at his educational background. It also has consequences for the larger structure of the unit in Sirach and further undermines the idea of a personal biography of Ben Sira.

Menahem Kister

Abstract

An integrative study of the two prayers—Ps 20 and the Aramaic hymn in papyrus Amherst 63—reciprocally illuminates their inherent complexity and enables us to trace the intricate paths of their evolution.

Stuart A. Irvine

Abstract

Several points tell against the usual translation of צור in Ps. 89:44a as the “edge” of the king’s sword. The Hebrew noun should be rendered as a divine epithet and vocative: “O Rock.” Verse 44 asserts that, far from being the Davidic king’s “Rock of salvation” (v. 27), Yahweh as Rock “turns back” the king’s sword.

Theo A. W. van der Louw

Abstract

Attempts to advocate multiple authorship for the Greek Pentateuch depend principally on statistics and are tenuous methodologically. Research methods from Translation Studies, applied to Genesis and Exodus, bring out their continuity. A sounding of the translational approach in Gen 2-3, Gen 27-28, Gen 48/50 and Exod 1-2 suggests that the Gen translator’s approach is shifting and flows seamlessly into that of the initial Exod chapters. Lexical and syntactic examples, too, illustrate that Exod continues or builds on or further develops the renderings found in the latter part of Gen. A natural explanation for this state of affairs is that the translator of Gen, whose approach had become increasingly idiomatic, completed Gen 50 and continued with Exod in the same vein. Our findings call for a verification of the multiple authorship hypothesis for the rest of the Pentateuch. They imply a less monolithic evaluation of LXX text-critical evidence.