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Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word

Part 1B Historical Transitions


Charting the Course of Gods People
Joshua and the Era of Judges: The Rise of Ancient Israel
Exploits of the Judges
Israel at Home in Palestine

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

The Book of Deuteronomy


1. Concludes with the Chosen People still wandering in the
wilderness, prior to crossing into the Promised Land
2. Deuteronomy means second law and it completes and
offers explanation for the Mosaic law
3. It was written centuries after the Israelites had inhabited
the Promised Land
4. Jesus quotes the book during his three temptations in
the desert and in explaining to the lawyer which
commandment was the first and greatest

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

Religious Themes in Deuteronomy


1. you shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart,
and with all your soul, and with all your strength. (6:5)
2. The central importance of Jerusalem and the Temple
3. Gods love of Israel and unhappiness with
the people for worshipping false gods
4. Disciples are a sign of Gods love Israel
must make a choice between obedience
(life) and disobedience (death)

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

The Books of Joshua and Judges


1. Time frame: death of Moses beginning of the monarchy
2. Describe Israelite settlement of the Promised Land and
their relationship to various Canaanite tribes
3. Both books give differing accounts of how the Chosen
People conquered the Promised Land:
(a) Joshua gives the impression the conquest
was swift and sure
(b) Judges reports a series of bitter struggles
against the Canaanites and other peoples

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

Conquest in the Book of Joshua


1. Joshua leads the initial conflicts into the Promised Land
2. Scripture says Jericho was conquered
by means of a miracle of God
3. The latter chapters mainly explain how the
land was divided among Israels tribes
4. Joshuas speech (24:13-15) to the
diverse audience supports the idea
that the Promised Land was gradually
assimilated by the Israelites

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

Differences of Conquest in the Book of Judges


1. Judges includes a peaceful settlement of the land
2. Judges suggests some settlement preceded the battles
3. The description of an encounter with king Jabin
4. Judges suggests pagan peoples co-existing
alongside the Israelites, while Joshua
describes a complete conquest

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

Warfare in Ancient Israel


1. During the golden age the Old Testament authors
portray Israel as trusting God more deeply and God
responding with miraculous protection
2. In 1 Samuel 8 the people ask for a
king which infers that they are rejecting
God as their warrior and king and
requesting to be like other nations
3. From this time on, Israelite warfare
becomes more conventional in focus

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

The Judges
1. Role: military leaders, settled political disputes within
their tribes, and reminded the people to turn to God
2. Filled the gap in leadership between Joshua and the
beginning of the monarchy
3. Were spiritually selected by God to lead the tribes
4. Major theme: there was a time when the Israelites were
led by God
5. Refused kingship, reminding the people that YHWH alone
was their king

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

Famous Judges
Gideon

Led victory over the


Midianites

Refused to rule as king


Committed idolatry

Deborah

Prophetess and judge


Defeated the Canaanites general Sisera
The Canticle of Deborah is among the
oldest passages in the Bible

Samson

Birth to a barren mother


Took Nazarite vow
Legendary strength from his reliance on God
Infidelities with Delilah led to his destruction

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

The Book of Ruth


1. Contains a genealogy connecting Ruth with King David
2. Tells the story of the fidelity of Ruth, a foreign woman, to
the Jewish family of her widowed husband
3. Important lessons from the book:
(a) Gods loving concern for those who suffer in
the midst of tragedy
(b) good comes from family devotion and faithfulness
(c) Salvation takes place in unexpected ways
(d) Ruths fidelity mirrors Gods love for his people

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

The Twelve Tribes of Israel in Palestine


Q: Were the villages of the hill country of Palestine settled
exclusively by former slaves from Egypt, or were most
native people who changed their religious and political
identities with their arrival?
A: The formation of a people may have been the result of a
combination of the common interests of the arriving
former slaves from Egypt and the rural peoples caught
between the competing interests of major empires and
affected by the lesser political ambitions of smaller states
and cities.

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of Gods Word


Part 1B Historical Transitions

Israelite Social Foundation


Bet Av
The basic social unit of
a village a patriarchal
household of extended
family members

Clans
Associations of Bet Avs
that arose from military
and agricultural needs

Councils of Elders
The heads of the various Bet Avs who
governed based on traditional laws that
were supplemented by the formal
religious traditions associated with Moses
Tribes
Probably originally identified
by the geographical regions
they occupied, though some
of the tribal names may even
predate their association
with the Israelites