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were to get the upper hand, they would then need the kinds of discreet, dependable and perceptive folk which wisdom produced.

In Job the enemies have a higher frequency because of the lament form which the writer used so extensively. Com- plaint about enemies was a well-known motif in Israel's laments, and Job is portrayed as a lamenting but innocent sufferer. When the lament is used as extensively as in Job, mention of enemies can scarcely be avoided. The striking thing about the enemies in this book is the peculiar semantic contradiction which emerges. Only once is God named as the enemy. Job, however, is throughout presented as the lamenting victim and the reckoned enemy.

The high frequency of the enemies in Sirach and the Wisdom of Solomon is to be attributed to their respective social settings. Sirach lived and wrote in Jerusalem during the Hellenistic period. He observed the shifting political domination of first Ptolemaic Egypt and later Seleucid Syria over Palestine. With these external political changes local Jews were constantly fragmented into various groups. The range of factions was capable of seemingly infinite variety. Sirach is pre-Maccabaean and reflects the situation prior to the acute social upheaval which characterized the Mac- cabaean revolt. His setting was much more complex than Jew against Gentile for it was Jew against Jew as many tried to

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