Chaos Uncreated: A Reassessment of the Theme of "Chaos" in the Hebrew Bible

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Walter de Gruyter, Feb 13, 2012 - Religion - 523 pages

This monograph presents a challenge to the view that the Hebrew Bible contains allusions to Yahweh’s battle with chaos, showing how the term has been inappropriately applied in a range of contexts where far more diverse spheres of imagery should instead be recognised. Through the construction of a careful diachronic model (developed with particular reference to the Psalter), the author presents a persuasive case for reversing common assumptions about the development of Israelite religion, finding instead that the combat motif was absent in the earliest period, whilst the slaying of a dragon was attributed to Yahweh only in a distinctive monotheistic adaptation, which arose from around 587 B.C.

 

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Contents

Psalms 96 98 148 and 135
195
2 Psalm 148
208
3 Psalm 135
212
4 Summary
213
VIII The Creation of Chaos in the Psalter? Psalms 24 95 146 148 136 33 and 104
214
1 Psalm 24
216
3 Psalm 146
219
4 Psalm 148
222

Psalms 29 68 and 114
38
2 The Theme of Chaos in Psalms 29 68 and 114
48
3 Summary
73
Psalms 18 32 423 69 88 124 and 144
74
Yahwehs Deliverance of the Suppliant from the Waters of Sheol and from his Enemies
75
The Waters as Symbolic of the Psalmists Enemies Yahweh as Deliverer
83
The Waters as Symbolic of Sheol and of the Psalmists Enemies Yahweh as Deliverer
85
The Waters as Symbolic of Sheol Yahweh as Deliverer
88
The Waters as Symbolic of Sheol Yahweh as the Agent of Woe
93
Freedom from the Waters attained through Prayer
107
7 A Note on Dating
109
8 Summary
112
Psalms 24 93 46 and 65
114
1 The Date of Psalms 24 93 46 and 65
117
2 The Theme of Chaos in Psalms 24 93 46 and 65
128
3 Summary
140
Psalms 77 74 89 with 87 and 44
142
1 Psalm 77
143
2 Psalm 74
152
3 Psalm 89
169
4 Psalm 44
189
5 Summary
193
5 Psalm 136
223
6 Psalm 33
226
7 Psalm 104
230
8 Summary
242
Psalms 78 106 and 136
243
1 The Date of Psalms 78 106 and 136
245
2 The Theme of Chaos in Psalms 78 106 and 136
251
3 Summary
258
Summary of Results
259
XI The Theme of Chaos in the Wider Old Testament
265
1 The Dating of the Chaos References of Job and Isaiah 27 30 51
272
2 The Theme of Chaos in Job and Isaiah 27 30 51
273
Conclusion
369
12 Creation
376
13 Chaos
379
2 Diachronie Results and Implications
394
Bibliography
400
Index of Subjects
451
Index of Biblical Ancient Near Eastern and Classical References
463
Index of Modern Authors
499
Index of Hebrew and Ugaritic Terms
503
Copyright

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About the author (2012)

Revised doctoral dissertation under the supervision of Dr Paul M. Joyce at the University of Oxford, 2001. Rebecca S. Watson was Lecturer in Biblical Studies at St Martin’s College Lancaster and Senior Tutor for the Carlisle and Blackburn Diocesan Training Institute, Carlisle, UK before returning to Oxford in 2003.

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