Lipovsky-old legends woven together


Igor Lipovsky in his book, Early Israelites, speaks of the “compilers” of the stories in Genesis.  He does not have a documentary theory in mind.  As best I can tell, he thinks that the southern and northern tribes had oral stories (he usually calls them legends) passed down for several centuries.  The compilers worked directly with those oral traditions.

His thesis about two peoples having one history requires that at some point the oral histories about Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were combined and written down.  There are a few traces left of the separate histories of Israel and Judah (e.g. Psalm 77:15), but mostly the compilers have succeeded in obliterating the separate histories.

When did this happen?  He says it has to be after the turn of the twelfth century BCE.  This is because you can see how the compilers have read early Iron Age realities back into the…

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About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. I study the History of Biblical Interpretation at Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio, as part of its Ph.D. program. I have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting.
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