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The Rise and Fall of the Israelite Kingdoms
Two Contrasting Biblical Stories

This book describes the contrasting theological perspectives present in the two biblical versions of the story of the Israelite Kingdoms as found in Samuel—Kings and Chronicles. The former attempts to provide an explanation for the collapse of the religious and political institutions (national state, dynasty, temple, and priesthood) that gave the people of the two Israelite kingdoms their identity based on their shared religious traditions. That goal is only partially met since the work’s ambiguous ending leaves the reader wondering about the prospects for the future. By contrast, Chronicles ends the story by looking to a restoration of Judah’s principal religious institutions.

This version of the story sees Israel’s future being made possible by worship in the restored Jerusalem Temple. The book highlights how these contrasting purposes resonate with divisions within the faith community today. Informed by archaeology and the social sciences, disciplines that make it possible to reconstruct the contours of ancient Israelite culture, the book treats the two stories separately and approaches them as they now exist, rather than by dealing with hypothetical redactional layering. The book also demonstrates that those responsible for both stories made use of tradition in the development of each work. highlighting how those contrasting purposes resonate with divisions within the faith community today.

This title is available for pre-order, scheduled to ship on August 3, 2021.

ISBN: 978-08091-5488-3

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