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The Deuteronomic Perspective on History: What it is and How Biblical Scholarship affects my thinking about it - Essay Example

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Name: Name of Instructor: Deuteronomic Perspective on History Deuteronomic History stands for the work of certain authors whose work include what was seen as a coherent history from the book of Deuteronomy with exception of chapters 32-34 to 2nd Kings, Joshua, Judges, 1st and 2nd Samuel…
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Download file to see previous pages Most scholars agree that the main theme of these books is that the disobedience of the law will always attract punishment by God and more particular is the withdrawal of the gift of land. There is consistency in the purpose of the author as it is clear that the author condemns apostasy and gives stern warning about its serious consequences (, 1). Deuteronomic history contains stories about the emergence of Israel, its rise to success and finally its failure as a nation (political) in the land of Canaan. It’s of importance to note that Deuteronomic history is a theological history and not pure facts and history. It also accounts for the successes and failures of Israel due to obedience and disobedience of God. Majority of scholars do agree that the use of this history does explain why Israel did fail and the people exiled due to God’s covenantal promises (, 1). According to the history, the problem of Israelites is that the covenant addressed to the Davidic dynasty during the first millennium BC which included the promise that David’s house would forever last have never been fulfilled. Not only haven’t they been fulfilled but also been proven wrong; i.e. by the fall of David’s house, the exile and their loss of political independence. According to the Deuteronomic history what happened to the Israelites and house of David was nothing but God’s judgment due to their sinning. Though God did make promises to them, these promises were not unconditional but were depended on the faithfulness of the king and his people to God. This history emphasizes that the political destruction of the people of Israel was not as a result of the weakness of the nation or of God but it was due to the power of God. It is Bernhard Anderson’s view that the Deuteronomists ‘theology of history' is capsulated in the introduction to the period of the Judges. This actually is a recapitulation of the conclusion in the book of Joshua in which the situation that came up after Joshua’s death is narrated. When Joshua was still alive, the people were faithful to God and due to this “they lived under the creative power of 'the saving experience' of the Exodus and 'the commanding experience' of Mount Sinai.” Though this generation knew Yahweh, the following generation did not know Him or the work that He Has done for the people of Israel. This is evident as the concept of covenant renewal generation after generation is clearly evident. It’s also clear that the faith of elders or parents is not necessarily that of children i.e. someone must individually and personally know God for them to be in covenantal relationship with God. Therefore each individual has to renew the covenant in their own way (, 1). Because of the required accountability of the people of Israel by God, a lot of emphasis is put on the command to "love the Lord your God with your whole heart and soul and strength." God does not have a compromise position on this, this is what He demands of them and nothing less than this will do. Because of this, Israel’s obedience to God’s commandments results in peace and welfare in their society whereas disobedience results in hardships, defeat and exile. The prophets act as the voice of God and they give the Israelites two options; to either choose life and prosperity or death and evil. Through the deeds and words of the prophets, God Had severally warned the Israelites of their sins ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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