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Christian Frevel

Bio: Christian Frevel is an academic researcher. The author has an hindex of 1, co-authored 3 publications receiving 4 citations.


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TL;DR: In this paper, the authors examine the aniconic polemics of the Hebrew Bible in an attempt to understand better their role in defining Israelite cultural boundaries and belief, and draw some broader conclusions regarding the role of polemical strategies in establishing a distinctive cultural discourse.
Abstract: The present article examines the aniconic polemics of the Hebrew Bible in an attempt to appreciate better their role in defining Israelite cultural boundaries and belief. The first part of the article deals with early sources in the aniconic tradition on which Deuteronomy 4 builds, particularly the idol prohibition of the Decalogue and the altar law of Exodus 20. The second part seeks to elucidate the creative appropriation of these traditions in Deuteronomy 4 and the historical circumstances that inspired this chapter's rhetoric. Drawing on the conclusions of the previous sections, particularly the strikingly divergent critiques of idolatry as motivated by different historical contexts, the final section will attempt to draw some broader conclusions regarding the role of polemical strategies in establishing a distinctive cultural discourse.

14 citations

DOI
01 Jan 2010
TL;DR: In this article, the authors examine the reception and influence of the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:2-1 7; Deuteronomy 5:6-21) in early Judaism between the 1st and 6th centuries AD.
Abstract: This thesis examines the Wirkungsgeschichte (the history of the reception and influence) of the biblical Decalogue (Exodus 20:2-1 7; Deuteronomy 5:6-21) in rabbinic literature of late antiquity, i.e. between the 1st and 6th centuries AD. The central question concerns the way in which the Ten Commandments are handled in rabbinic literature, and their significance and sta tus within the Law. The focus is entirely on the Decalogue as a whole, and not the i ndividual Commandments. In the first section of the thesis, a survey of aca demic biblical research highlights the approaches taken to the Decalogue and the questions asked. Subsequently, nonrabbinic sources from early Judaism, such as the Sa maritans, Hellenistic Judaism and early Christianity, are consulted in terms of their r lation to the Ten Commandments. The distinct and often widely differing interpretat ions of the text will help to clarify the specific characteristics of rabbinic reception. The focal point of the thesis is the second part, w hich discusses the rabbinic interpretation of the Ten Commandments. Over a hund red rabbinic texts from various centuries, either containing the keyword "T en Words" ( תורבדה תרשע) or including commentary on the corresponding texts in Ex 20 and Dt 5, are consulted, analysed and placed in relation to each other. The dominating themes that emerge are the Ten Comma nd ents in Jewish liturgy, as well as in the context of the Revelation at Sinai. In rabbinic discussions, the content of the Commandments retreats into the background. T he results of the examination are surprising but insightful. The special status h eld by the Decalogue also in rabbinic Judaism is evidently based on different pr inciples than the traditional Christian understanding of the Ten Commandments. Finally, a look ahead to the 20th/21st centuries ex amines various examples of the impact of rabbinic reception of the Decalogue on mo dern Jewish perception of the
Journal Article
TL;DR: In this article, the authors investigated the Asaphite Psalms and their corpus from the viewpoint of the Deutero-Asaphite part of the Psalter (Book III), as well as the “Deutero
Abstract: Recently, a few scholars questioned the thesis of a prophetic persona responsible for Isaiah 40–55/66. It has been argued (by Prof. Ulrich Berges and others) that temple singers/musicians (as we hear of them in postexilic literature, especially Chronicles) are responsible for Isaiah 40ff. This essay investigates that proposition from the viewpoint of the Asaphite Psalms and their corpus in the Asaphite part of the Psalter (Book III), as well as the “DeuteroAsaphite” part of the Psalter (Book IV). In an exemplary disposition, three interfaces between “Asaph” (Pss 50; 73–83; 90– 106*) and “Isaiah” (Isa 40–66) are examined: (1 st ) The reception and transformation of the Exodus-tradition in Psalm 77 and Isaiah 40–55; (2 nd and most extensively) the way of dealing with catastrophic situations in Psalms 77–79 (plus Ps 106); and Isaiah 63:7–64:11; (3 rd ) the “new song” in Isaiah 42:10–13 (plus other hymns) and in Psalm 96/98. In the final part, observations and indications of these intertextual investigations are evaluated and summarised. There seems to be interesting proximities and interdependencies between the two textual strata, so that the thesis of (Asaphite) temple singers as the group responsible for composing, transmitting and/or editing (also) the exilic-postexilic part of Isaiah 40ff. can be substantiated. It must be admitted, however, that this study is only a test case and does not examine the levitical (Asaphite and Qorachite) Psalms or Isaiah 40–66 overall.