Abstract and Keywords
This chapter explores ways readers have interpreted Genesis–Kings treated as a single work (Primary History or “Enneateuch”), a continuous narrative, as argued by Spinoza and, more recently, David Noel Freedman. Modern scholars have analyzed in detail the work’s putative sources and redaction history; much less so what the story as a whole might mean. Among the exceptions are David Clines, Dan Jacobson, Jack Miles, and Danna Nolan Fewell and David Gunn. An account of their readings brings into focus God as a character, his motivation, and his predicament at the story’s destructive end. A view of this singular God given to dominion, jealousy, and violence is related to Regina Schwartz’s argument that such a monotheistic god’s legacy will be violence. Such extensive, variegated, and ambiguous literature is also open to other readings. In practice, however, the First Story has usually been told in fragments.
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