History of Modern Scholarship on the Biblical Word Herem. The Contributions of Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., Peter C. Craigie, and Tremper Longman, III

Author: Lyons, William L.
Year:2010
Pages:236
ISBN:0-7734-3834-3
978-0-7734-3834-7
Price:179.95
The study is the first extensive analysis of the biblical exegesis of three prominent biblical scholars (Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., Peter C. Craigie, and Tremper Longman, III) who represent different perspectives within the evangelical community about how to read these difficult passages of war. The work draws the reader beyond the current cultural debate about what some have called “holy war”, allowing scholars to formulate independent conclusions about herem based on a close reading of biblical passages and in dialogue with evangelical biblical interpretation.

Reviews

“In this, the contribution of Bill Lyons’ study rests in its focus on the work of several of the more prominent evangelical scholars of the 20th century. How these scholars deal with the ban is of great interest, not least because they understand their work as motivated by and in the service of communities of faith in which the authority of the Bible is paramount. For these authors, there is no way around the notion that the texts in question are in some way “the word of the LORD”; this means, among other things, that the technical skills and findings associated with the modern historical-critical study of the Bible must be utilized in ways that honor the authoritative status of the texts. One might argue that the ban is understood in relation to other, less problematic passages of the Bible. Or one might suggest, as earlier generations did, that the ban is a kind of divine command for extreme situations. One cannot, however, simply dismiss the texts as reflective of an earlier, “primitive” social reality. Nor can one easily move in directions that suggest a development of doctrine, so that later texts somehow cancel or render moot the command by which Israel’s enemies are devoted to destruction.”– Prof. John Kelsay, Florida State University

“Lyons assessment of the three evangelical OT scholars’ treatment is objective and fair; he lauds their strengths, concurring with much of their work. While all three scholars affirm h?erem as just or moral because God was the initiator and therefore also defines what is just and moral, neither of them ameliorates the offensive aspects of h?erem by postulating some sort of 'ancient barbaric military practice,' as suggested by some scholars. Conversely, all three scholars reviewed see similarities between ancient Israel’s military practices and those of the surrounding ancient Near Eastern cultures.” – Prof. Siegfried S. Schatzmann, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary

Table of Contents

FOREWORD
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
ABBREVIATIONS
INTRODUCTION
Evangelicals and Evangelicalism
Previous Scholarly Work
1. HEREM
The Biblical ?erem
Ijerem in Deuteronomy
2. WALTER C. KAISER, Jr.
Kaiser’s Work in Context
Kaiser and Herem
Lingering Questions
3. PETER C. CRAIGIE
Craigie’s Work in Context
Craigie and War in the Old Testament
Craigie and Herem
Lingering Questions
4. TREMPER LONGMAN, III
Longman’s Work in Context
Longman, War in the Old Testament, and ?erem
Lingering Questions
5. CONCLUSION
Strategies Shared
Strategies Rejected
Strategies Unique to Each Scholar
APPENDIX A. HEREM IN DEUTERONOMY
APPENDIX B. HEREMIN THE HEBREW BIBLE
APPENDIX C. HEREM IN THE LXX AND DEUTERONOMY
BIBLIOGRAPHY
AUTHOR INDEX
SUBJECT INDEX