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The Use Of Traditional Religious Language

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Chapter Summary

Viewed in isolation, many verses in Psalm 119 are difficult or impossible to interpret correctly; however, when viewed in light of themes, tropes, or topoi that the author borrows from elsewhere, the meaning becomes more clear. Identifying the use of a topos in Ps 119:19 is essential for understanding the meaning of the verse, and there are many other verses throughout the psalm that use a conventionalized element. Recognizing these elements is necessary to understand how Ps 119 communicates its message, and the purpose of this chapter is to identify and describe them. In the chapter the author identifies the use of traditional religious language and argues that recognizing it is essential for understanding Ps 119. It explains how the traditional religious language contributes to the rhetoric of the psalm.

Keywords: Psalm 119; traditional religious language

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