Josephus' Retelling of Nathan's Oracle (2 Samuel 7)

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This paper deals with the way Josephus has retold and rewritten the narrative in 2 Sam 7 in his Jewish Antiquities 7.90-95. Recent studies made on this issue have focused either on the question of Messianism or on the characterization of king David in Josephus' writings. However, our study focuses on Josephus' qualities as a commentator and discusses how Josephus handled the hermeneutical problems he encountered in the story, for example: why did God forbid David to build a temple? What was the nature of God's promise to David that his dynasty will rule forever? These questions are examined through a close reading of the Josephus' retelling of the biblical story in 2 Sam 7. We have considered omissions, additions, and changes in the sequence of actions. Our aim was to find out whether the differences between the biblical text and that of Josephus should be ascribed to a different Vorlage (which may be identical to the LXX), to harmonization or to intentional changes made to clarify difficult verses within the text
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)9-17
JournalScandinavian Journal for the Old Testament
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2006


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