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enemy figures and the "act-consequence relationship," as well as the action of Yahweh who secures life against death. The later writers, Qoheleth and Sirach, both allow consider- able scope to death as a motive in their responses to their enemies. Sirach adds the phenomenon of shame as a signifi- cant factor.

A question posed in the first chapter of this study may now be raised for consideration. Are beneficent, non- aggressive responses to enemies characteristic in the wisdom

literature?193 The answer seems to be affirmative, with

some qualification.

The great variety of responses uncovered qualifies an affirmative answer somewhat. Occasionally (in Sirach), outright hostility toward some enemies is in evidence. Notes of self-interested caution vis-a-vis enemies also appear. In the book of Job disputation between enemies is apparent, though the question may arise as to whether this disputation is recommended or merely used as a literary device. It is probably to be taken as a literary device. Job is, after all, in extremis. Qoheleth, ever the renegade, exhibits hatred and fear toward his "enemies," life and God.

Although these qualifications must be kept in mind, the question posed still requires an affirmative answer

193

See pp. 20-21.

297

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