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The Alpha Text (AT) and Old Greek (OG) versions of Esther include six chapter-length passages—the “Additions”—not paralleled in the Hebrew Masoretic Text (MT) of Esther. In Addition A, Mordecai sees a dream marked by battle cries, confusion, thunder, earthquake, chaos, a pair of dragons, preparations for war, darkness and gloom, affliction and anguish, and an outcry to God from a frightened nation of righteous people. A small spring emerges from the outcry and turns into a mighty river, which consumes those held in esteem. Addition F offers a limited interpretation of several elements of this dream but leaves much of the dream uninterpreted. This paper offers a fresh perspective on the Addition A dream and its relationship to the plot of both AT- and OG-Esther in light of Artemidorus’s Oneirocritica, a second-century CE handbook of dream interpretation.

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In: Vetus Testamentum
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The census narrative in 1 Chr 21 draws from the earlier version of the episode preserved in 2 Sam 24, which followed a mythological pattern we encounter in “crisis episodes” deriving from the monarchic era. The Chronicler introduces changes that not only depart from his source material on the literary level; they also break with the older mythological patterns found in earlier crisis episodes. These departures result from the influence of Persian imperial mythology on the Chronicler’s writing, with implications for the Chronicler’s own mythological agenda within his rendition of the census narrative and the chapters surrounding it.

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In: Vetus Testamentum
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The temple vision of Ezek 40–48 devotes considerable attention to measuring and describing the various gates and entrances of the temple compound. Previous studies have tended to focus on the defensive function of the gates. However, these structures not only bar entry but also facilitate access to the temple under certain ritualized conditions. Offering a close reading of the references to the gates in Ezek 40–48, in which particular roles and activities are associated with specific entrances, this article shows how these architectural features of the temple map a differential system in which social hierarchies are organized according to the level, direction, and timing of access ascribed to different groups and individuals within the temple compound. The article concludes by exploring the significance of the gates for how we understand the literary genre of the temple vision of Ezek 40–48, and in particular its nature as a social utopia.

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In: Vetus Testamentum
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This article offers a new edition of the LXX Joshua portion of Codex Climaci Rescriptus, an important, though somewhat neglected, Sinaitic Palimpsest. The edition is based on the post-processed multispectral images, produced by Early Manuscripts Electronic Library in cooperation with the Lazarus Project. The new technology has aided in correcting various errors in the editio princeps and uncovering hitherto unseen textual and paratextual elements. Moreover, the results of radiocarbon analysis have been factored into the dating of the fragment, resulting in a new proposal for its date of origin.

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In: Vetus Testamentum

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This article seeks to clarify the use of “Dibonite” over “Moabite” in the Mesha Stele. To do so, it considers Mesha’s rhetoric, particularly as it pertains to ethnic divisions within the text. It also compares the rhetoric about Moab found in the Mesha Stele with the rhetoric found in the Hebrew Bible.

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In: Vetus Testamentum
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This study makes the case that within the books of Samuel-Kings as a whole, the book of Samuel presents two nested iterations of paradigmatic history, each of which anticipates the subsequent monarchic history with a distinct thematic focus. The more detailed of these two iterations—the story of Saul’s and David’s reigns in 1 Sam 9– 2 Sam 24—typologically anticipates the subsequent history of the kingdoms of Israel and Judah as narrated in 1 Kgs 12–2 Kgs 25. This paradigmatic “preview” of the fates of Israel and Judah is further condensed in the stories about Eli and Samuel in 1 Sam 1–8, which anticipate elements from 1 Sam 9–2 Sam 24, the book of Kings, and beyond.

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In: Vetus Testamentum
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Scholars have used the regnal formulae in Kings to reconstruct at least three successive editions at work—a Hezekian version of Kings, a Josianic redaction, and an exilic redaction. Nevertheless, there have only rarely been examinations of how the evaluation of a particular king interacts with the narrative account of that king’s tenure. This paper will examine the ways in which Ahaz’s evaluation is at odds with the narrative depiction of his reign. By analyzing each element of his evaluation, this paper argues that there is evidence that a Josianic or later redactor modified an originally positive evaluation of this king. When taken on its own terms, the narrative account of Ahaz presents a king who rescued his nation, installed a large altar for public use, and removed iconography from the Jerusalem temple. Given this analysis, Ahaz should be understood as a precursor to, rather than a foil of, Hezekiah’s reform program.

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In: Vetus Testamentum
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Many previous interpretations of Job 31:5–6; Ps 44:21–22; and Josh 22:23 have mistaken these texts as simple conditionals or as fully-articulated oaths. These earlier readings misconstrue verbs of adjudicatory procedure as punishments serving as self-curses in oaths. Context and semantic content favor identifying truncated oaths of innocence followed by separate adjudicatory challenges to God.

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In: Vetus Testamentum
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In this book, DeJong explores Deuteronomy’s redefinition of prophecy in Mosaic terms. He traces the history of Deuteronomy’s concept of the prophet like Moses from the seventh century BCE to the first century CE, and demonstrates the ways in which Jewish and Christian texts were influenced by and responded to Deuteronomy’s creation of a Mosaic norm for prophetic claims. This wide-ranging discussion illuminates the development of normative discourses in Judaism and Christianity, and illustrates the far-reaching impact of Deuteronomy’s thought.

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In the Judean War’s proem, Josephus professes his need to lament, an atypical statement in Hellenistic and Roman historiography. This article explores his lamentations, in the proem and the work, as they engage body, emotion, gender, and power. It examines the constructions that laments receive in Josephus’s diverse literary and cultural backgrounds—biblical and early Jewish literature as well as ancient Greek and Roman traditions. It also considers how the War reflects these constructions. Josephus’s laments, staging his wailing voice and suffering body, suggest self-abasement. However, his protagonists’ laments often convey resistance and rebellion, a traditional function of laments; they thus shed a more political light on the proem. Josephus masculinizes the typically feminine lamenter-qua-protester figure, perhaps to avoid feminizing his own role. This article interprets Josephus’s laments as an embodiment of his carefully subversive account and as emotional resistance against the Roman power.

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In: Journal for the Study of Judaism