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Moral, Political And Theological Evaluation

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Chapter Summary

Although scholars debate whether the historiography of Samuel has a didactic or propagandist aim, evaluation of the past forms the core of both these purposes. This chapter examines the nature of this ideological evaluation and how it is conveyed using narrative devices. It explains the viewpoint of Samuel, Yahweh, the people, the narrator, God, David's servants and the Israelites, and Joab. It also examines some ways in which explicit and implicit commentaries on events in Samuel are drawn together to convey complex and critical evaluation. The narrative does not merely tell events but handles complex issues such as moral culpability, theological significance and political implications. Finally, this study of viewpoints and the juxtaposition of opposites in the text points to certain implications for reading the representation of the past in Samuel.

Keywords: God; historiography; ideological evaluation; Joab; narrative devices; political implications; Samuel; theological significance; Yahweh



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