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(681 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[German Version] The biblical picture of Samuel (Heb. לאֵוּמשְׁ/ šĕmû’ēl), a figure at the transition from premonarchic Israel (II, 1) to the monarchy, is extremely complex. In the relatively earliest source, 1 Samuel, and then afterwards he fills an extraordinary spectrum of roles: priest (1 Sam 2f.; 7:9; cf. his Levitical descent in 1 Chr 6:12, 18 [Eng. 6:27, 33]), prophet (Prophets and Prophecy: II; 1 Sam 3:20; 9:1–10:16; 19:18–24; 28; Jer 15:1; Ps 99:6; Sir 46:15, 20; Acts 3:24), judge (Judges of Isr…


(5,830 words)

Author(s): Hecker, Karl | Cancik, Hubert | Dietrich, Walter | Plümacher, Eckhard | Brennecke, Hanns Christof | Et al.
[German Version] I. Ancient Near East – II. Greece – III. Rome – IV. The Bible – V. Christianity – VI. Judaism I. Ancient Near East Historiography in the classic sense, with a reflective account of historical linkages, developed rudimentarily at best in the cuneiform cultures of the ancient Near East in Hittite and Neo-Assyrian annals and the introductions to treaties; even these documents were usually written to justify the political actions. Around the middle of the 3rd millennium bce, however, there appeared an immense number of all sorts of texts containing more …

Deuteronomistic History

(2,804 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[German Version] I. Basis, Dispute and Development of the Hypothesis of a Deuteronomistic History – II. Arrangement of the Content – III. Historical Locus and Importance for the Theology of History The Deuteronomistic History (DeutHist) is not a canonical entity, but a scholarly hypothesis. It combines the book Deut from the “Torah” section of the canon with the books Joshua, Judges, 1 & 2 Samuel, and 1 and 2 Kings from the “former prophets” section. These biblical books depict the history of Israel from the time of Moses to the Exile. I. Basis, Dispute and Development of the Hypot…


(3,786 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter | Klauck, Hans-Josef | Leeb, Rudolf | Jacobs, Martin | Dan, Joseph | Et al.
[German Version] I. Bible – II. Christianity – III. Judaism – IV. Islam I. Bible 1. Old Testament From the biblical perspective, David, whose name means “darling, beloved,” is the embodiment of the ideal ruler. He governed in the early 10th century bce, allegedly for 40 years, of which seven and a half were in Hebron, the rest in Jerusalem (2 Sam 5:4f.). Although he is the king of whom the Bible has most to tell (Kingship in Israel), he remains a …


(972 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[German Version] ( ‘edôm) means “reddish,” and the parallel term Seir ( sē'îr) “rough,” probably the brush in the mountains. They designate a landscape or ethnicity south of ¶ the Dead Sea: in the first instance, to the southeast, between Wādī l-Ḥasā and the Gulf of Aqaba, but also in the Wādī l-'Araba and the southern Negeb. “Seir” occurs first in the Amarna Letters (Amarna; EA 288.26; mid-14th cent.) and in a place list of Ramses II (mid-13th cent.), “Edom” in a letter from the eighth year of Merneptah…


(339 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[German Version] is the oasis on the western shore of the Dead Sea. Its combination of a warm climate and plentiful water ( En, construct of ‘Ayin/עַיִן, “spring”) has long offered ideal living conditions for people, a few animals (including panthers, cliff badgers, ibexes [Heb. gedi, “goat”), and plants (wine, henna [Song 1:14], dates [Sir 24:14], balsam [Jos. Ant. IX 7; Bell. IV 468; Pliny, Naturalis historia 12.113; Šabb. 26a]). A pilgrimage sanctuary with a walled-in court and a large main room (20 × 5 m) was l…

Joseph/Joseph Narrative

(996 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[German Version] “Joseph,” Heb. יוֹסֵף/ yôsep, means “He (God) adds.” In the Bible, half-a-dozen people bear the name, including Mary's husband in the New Testament. In the Old Testament, the son of Jacob (I) and Rachel stands out (Gen 30:23f.). He is the eponymous ancestor of the major tribe of Israel (Tribes of Israel), whose chief heir, in turn, is Ephraim (Gen 38). Joseph/Ephraim settled in the central mountains of Palestine (Josh 16; 1 Kgs 4:8) and claimed a central role in (northern) Israel (Ge…


(1,558 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter | Lattke, Michael
[German Version] I. Bible 1. Literary analysis. The primary source for Solomon (Heb. ְׁשׁלמה/ šĕlōmōh) is 1 Kgs 1–12. It has a chiastic structure centered on the account of the design, construction, and dedication of the Jerusalem temple (II, 4; 1 Kgs 5–8); it is flanked by descriptions of Solomon’s illustrious wisdom and reign (1 Kgs 3f. and 9f.), with narratives of his rise and decline constituting the outward framework (1 Kgs 1f. and 11f.). This overall structure is a product of Deuteronomistic historiogra…


(324 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[German Version] Eli was priest of the transregionally significant sanctuary of Shiloh in the 11th century (1 Sam 1–4). His name means “the highest” (cf. Ugar. 'lyn, Heb. 'lywn; the theophoric element – presumably yw – has been omitted, cf. the name 'lyw attested in inscriptions as well as 'lw in parallel to yhwh in 1 Sam 2:10). Eli's sons, also priests, bore Egyptian names: Phinehas and Hophni. They appear as dishonorable bachelors; Eli, in contrast, as honorable, if fallible…


(783 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[German Version] Saul, Hebrew שָׁאוּל. The first king of Israel (Kingship [in Israel]) is not mentioned anywhere outside the Bible, but his reign is attested sufficiently within the Bible. The beginnings of a state in Israel (II, 1.a) were already visible before him; they met the social and economic needs at the end of the 2nd millennium. Around 1000 bce, Saul, a handsome man from a wealthy family (1 Sam 9:1f.), succeeded in uniting the tribes of the hill country in central Palestine and northern Transjordania (Judah, Galilee, and the lowlands of Canaan…

Righteousness, Justice

(6,688 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter | Reumann, John | Luz, Ulrich | Strohm, Theodor
1. OT 1.1. Term The Heb. root ṣdq is as comprehensive in meaning as the Eng. “right(eous),” Ger. (ge)recht, Gk. nomos, or Lat. ius (Law). It embraces, besides the narrower legal sense of justice, judgment, and standard for what is right (Ger. Gericht, Rechts-norm), the wider ethicosocial sphere of wholesome and salutary relationships. The masc. ṣedeq denotes a state of beneficently ordered relationships between people or between people and God; the fem. ṣĕdāqâ refers to conduct that corresponds to this state or promotes it; the verb ṣdq describes the related action…

Isaiah, Book of

(2,801 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
1. Overall Structure Ever since B. Duhm’s epochal commentary (1892), scholars have generally divided the Book of Isaiah into three parts: • ¶ Isaiah I, chaps. 1–39, according to the dating in 1:1; 6:1; 36:1, the testament of the prophet Isaiah from the eighth century b.c.; • Isaiah II (Deutero-Isaiah), chaps. 40–55, which the reference to Babylon (43:14; 47) and the election of the Persian king Cyrus (558–29; Isa. 44:28; 45:1) identify as an exilic prophecy; and • Isaiah III (Trito-Isaiah), chaps. 56–66, which the mention of the second temple (§1) and of the rebuilding of Jerusalem (60:7, 10…


(578 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[English Version] . Als Gestalt am Übergang vom vorstaatl. zum staatl. Israel (: II.,1.) gibt S. (hebr. שְׁמוּאֵל) in der Bibel ein höchst facettenreiches Bild ab. Schon in der relativ ältesten Quelle, 1Sam, und auch danach verkörpert er verschiedenste Rollen: Er ist Priester (1Sam 2f.; 7,9; vgl. sein Levitentum in 1Chr 6,12.18), Prophet (: II.; 1Sam 3,20; 9,1–10; 16; 28; Jer 15,1; Ps 99,6; Sir 46,15.20; Apg 3,24), Richter (1Sam 7,15; 12,1–5; Sir 46,14; Apg 13,20), Retter (1Sam 7,7–14; Sir 46,16–18), v.a. »Königs…


(567 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter
[English Version] , hebr. שָׁאוּל. Der erste König Israels (Königtum in Israel) ist außerbibl. überhaupt nicht, innerbibl. indes mit hinreichender Deutlichkeit bezeugt. Die Staatenbildung in Israel (: II.,1., a) hatte sich vor ihm schon angekündigt und entsprach den gesellschaftlichen und ökonomischen Bedürfnissen im ausgehenden 2.Jt. Um 1000 v.Chr. gelang es S., einem stattlichen Mann aus vornehmer Familie (1Sam 9,1f.), die Stämme des mittelpaläst. und nordtransjordanischen Berglands zu einen (Juda, …


(1,338 words)

Author(s): Dietrich, Walter | Lattke, Michael
[English Version] I. Bibel 1.Literarischer Befund.Primärquelle über S. (hebr. שְׁלמֹה) ist der Abschnitt 1Kön 1–12. Er ist chiastisch aufgebaut: Den Kern bilden die Berichte von Planung, Bau und Weihung des Jerusalemer Tempels (: II.,4.; 1Kön 5–8), darum lagern sich Schilderungen der glänzenden Weisheit und glanzvollen Herrschaft S.s (1Kön 3f. und 9f.), den äußeren Rahmen bilden Erzählungen von seinem Aufstieg und Abstieg (1Kön 1f. und 11f.). Dieses Gesamtbild verdankt sich dtr. Geschichtsschreibung (De…