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The Blinded Eyes of the Wise: Sapiential Tradition and Mosaic Commandment in Deut 16:19–20

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Chapter Summary

Weinfeld's study contains an impressive amount of detailed observations on the style, form, and ideas of Deuteronomy. Regarding the exegetical discussion that has unfolded since Weinfeld's study, it becomes clear that the question about how the book of Deuteronomy is related to the overall and ill-defined complex of "wisdom" cannot be answered by a simple model. In 16:19, a certain group of חכמים is mentioned. Although this mention is made at first glance more or less en passant, and, compared to Deut 4:5-8, seems to be theologically far from crucial, it can provide some insight into the relationship between Deuteronomy and "wisdom", since it contains a critical view of "the wise", which is related to a (Deuteronomistic) concept of obedience to the Mosaic Torah. In Deut 16:19-20, sapiential tradition is at the same time both taken up and critically transformed within the literary horizon of the book of Deuteronomy.

Keywords: Deuteronomy; Mosaic Torah; sapiential tradition; wisdom



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