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Central Sanctuary and Centralization of Worship in Ancient Israel


From the Settlement to the Building of Solomon's Temple


This book provides the first major reinvestigation and reinterpretation of the history of centralization of worship in ancient Israel since de Wette and Wellhausen in the nineteenth century. Old Testament scholarship has thus far relied on the consensus that the book of Deuteronomy is the product of late monarchic Judah (7th century BC). Pitkanen places the biblical material in its archaeological and ancient Near Eastern context and pays special attention to rhetorical analysis. The author suggests that the book of Joshua, as well as its sources (such as Deuteronomy) may have originated as early as before the disaster of Aphek and the rejection of Shiloh.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 1-59333-157-6
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Publication Status: In Print

Publication Date: Jan 1,2004
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 0
ISBN: 1-59333-157-6
$124.00

This book provides the first major reinvestigation and reinterpretation of the history of centralization of worship in ancient Israel since de Wette and Wellhausen in the nineteenth century. Based on these scholars' classic interpretation of the history and theology of centralization of worship in ancient Israel, Old Testament scholarship has thus far relied on the consensus that the book of Deuteronomy is the product of late monarchic Judah (7th century BC). Pitkanen places the biblical material in its archaeological and ancient Near Eastern context and pays special attention to rhetorical analysis. After examining the Pentateuchal altar laws and the role of the central sanctuary during the premonarchical period in the biblical sources, the author concludes that Shiloh was the central sanctuary for most of the premonarchical period. However, the examined sources indicate that there was no central sanctuary, and no centralization requirement during the earliest days of the settlement in the land of Israel, nor after the loss of the ark to the Philistines at Aphek (1 Sam 4). Combining these insights with literary and rhetorical analysis of the book of Joshua, the author suggests that the book of Joshua, as well as its sources (such as Deuteronomy) may have originated as early as before the disaster of Aphek and the rejection of Shiloh.

Pekka Pitkanen is a native of Finland. He has a Diploma Engineer degree in Computer Technology from Helsinki University of Technology. He has an MDiv inTheology from Chongshin University in South Korea and a PhD in Old Testament Studies from the University of Gloucestershire. He is currently the Course Co-ordinator at the Open Theological College at the University of Gloucestershire.

This book provides the first major reinvestigation and reinterpretation of the history of centralization of worship in ancient Israel since de Wette and Wellhausen in the nineteenth century. Based on these scholars' classic interpretation of the history and theology of centralization of worship in ancient Israel, Old Testament scholarship has thus far relied on the consensus that the book of Deuteronomy is the product of late monarchic Judah (7th century BC). Pitkanen places the biblical material in its archaeological and ancient Near Eastern context and pays special attention to rhetorical analysis. After examining the Pentateuchal altar laws and the role of the central sanctuary during the premonarchical period in the biblical sources, the author concludes that Shiloh was the central sanctuary for most of the premonarchical period. However, the examined sources indicate that there was no central sanctuary, and no centralization requirement during the earliest days of the settlement in the land of Israel, nor after the loss of the ark to the Philistines at Aphek (1 Sam 4). Combining these insights with literary and rhetorical analysis of the book of Joshua, the author suggests that the book of Joshua, as well as its sources (such as Deuteronomy) may have originated as early as before the disaster of Aphek and the rejection of Shiloh.

Pekka Pitkanen is a native of Finland. He has a Diploma Engineer degree in Computer Technology from Helsinki University of Technology. He has an MDiv inTheology from Chongshin University in South Korea and a PhD in Old Testament Studies from the University of Gloucestershire. He is currently the Course Co-ordinator at the Open Theological College at the University of Gloucestershire.

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Pekka Pitkänen

  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • Divine Presence and Centralization
  • Centralization in the Pentateuch
  • Centralization and the Period from the Settlement to the Building of Solomon's Temple
  • Summary and Conclusions
  • Appendix: An Examination of the Properties of Historical Reconstructions
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