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Chapter Summary

4QInstruction is one of the longer texts found in the caves at Qumran. Previously known as Sapiential Work A, 4QInstruction is essentially a loosely structured collection of ethical and paraenetic material, introduced and punctuated by reflections on the importance of wisdom and by eschatological descriptions. A brief examination of the material found in the fragments of 4QInstruction reveals that its paraenetic material comprises primarily admonitions in the second person singular imperative, frequently followed by motive clauses. Among Jewish instruction material, the admonitions of 4QInstruction are formally most similar to Proverbs 22:17-24:34 and Proverbs 25-27. This chapter examines the relationship of the underlying inaugurated eschatology of 4QInstruction to the kind of forms used in the text and to the nature of their ethical teaching.

Keywords: 4QInstruction; admonitions; paraenetic material; Qumran



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