Sparks and the age of the Song of Deborah


Beginning in April of 2005 I blogged for several weeks about Kenton Sparks’ book, God’s Word in Human Words.

Sparks has now made available on the Internet his paper “Religion, Identity and the Origins of Ancient Israel”, which was originally published in Religious Compass in 2007.  The paper is here.

I remember from having read his book that he covered some of the same material there.  However, I want to focus on a particular issue.

The main thrust of his paper is that after a period when the consensus of scholars seemed to be that the Israelites who settled in the central highlands of Canaan around the 12th century BCE were Canaanites, many scholars were pushing back and reconsidering that the Israelites may have been semi-nomads from the east after all. Sparks marshals some of the evidence for this idea that the Israelites were more Shasu than Canaanite.

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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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