Between Evidence and Ideology

Essays on the History of Ancient Israel read at the Joint Meeting of the Society for Old Testament Study and the Oud Testamentisch Werkgezelschap Lincoln, July 2009


The historiography of Ancient Israel is much debated. The various approaches are never void of ideology and some reckon more with the available evidence than others. This volume consists of a set of case-studies that reveal the difficulties that arise when trying to write a history as honestly as possible. This implies that both the archaeology of Ancient Palestine - the finds and their interrogation - as well as the Philosophy of History - their models and their implications - are discussed. The outcome is a variety of approaches that inform the reader of current views on the history of Ancient Israel.
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Biographical Note

Bob Becking, PhD. (1985) in Theology, Utrecht University, is Senior Research Professor in the Faculty of Humanities at Utrecht for Bible, Religion and Identity. He published extensively on historical matters and was co-editor of the Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible (Brill 1995).

Lester L. Grabbe, PhD (1975) in Religion, Claremont Graduate University, DD (1993), University of Hull, is Professor of Hebrew Bible and Early Judaism at the University of Hull. He has published extensively on the history of Second Temple Judaism and the history of ancient Israel. Founder of the European Seminar in Historical Methodology and editor of the monograph series of the same name.

Table of contents

Lester L. Grabbe
David between Ideology and Evidence
Bob Becking
Mercator in theWilderness: Numbers 33
John R. Bartlett
Origins of Israel between History and Ideology
Meindert Dijkstra
The Case of the Corrupting Consensus
Lester L. Grabbe
Three Hasidisms and their Militant Ideologies: 1 and 2 Maccabees, Psalms 144 and 149
Harm van Grol
The Old Testament as a Diachronic Corpus
Marinus Koster
Pharaoh Shishak’s Invasion of Palestine and the Exodus from Egypt
Andrew D.H. Mayes
The Greek Esthers and the Search for History: Some Preliminary Observations
Jill Middlemass
Does Archaeology Really Deserve the Status of a ‘High Court’ in Biblical Historical Research?
Nadav Na"aman
History and Prophecy in the Book of Judges
Klaas Spronk
Resisting the Past: Ancient Israel inWestern Memory
Figures and Maps
Index of Authors
Index of Textual References


All those interested in history and the methodology of history writing, especially in connection with the Ancient Near East; Biblical scholars and theologians


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