The Original Version of Deborah’s Song, and its Numerical Structure

In: Vetus Testamentum

The Song of Deborah (Jud 5:2-31a) is one of the Biblical texts that has been most thoroughly analyzed. In this article I wish to present a new solution to some of the basic issues relating to the song. My hypothesis is based on exegetical and historical insights that can shed light on the process of editing and sculpting that the song underwent. A distinction between the original poem and editorial additions may, in my opinion, help solve some of the major problems in our understanding of the poem and its thematic coherence. Once the kernel of the text is isolated and the editorial additions are peeled away, the original song text is revealed, which is based on a clear and elaborate numerical structure.

  • 7

    See EcholsMuse25.

  • 17

    Ibid.206.

  • 22

    Ibid.226-227.

  • 34

    See GlobeDeborah503; Lindars Judges 241; Vincent Deborah 74.

  • 36

    Ibid.610note 39 he brings other scholars who accept this position such as Globe Deborah 172; J. A. Soggin Judges (otl London 1981) 88; M. D. Cogan “A Structural and Literary Analysis of the Song of Deborah” cbq 40 (1978) 153.

  • 37

    See LindarsJudges241-8; J. Gray Joshua Judges and Ruth New Century Bible (London 1977) 218-220; and Soggin Judges 94.

  • 47

    VincentDeborah69-73.

  • 71

    See Labuschagne“Significant Compositional Techniques” 586; Knohl “Sacred Architecture” 191-2.

  • 72

    SmithJudges 5205.

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