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D. J. MCCARTHY, Berit and Covenant in the Deuteronomistic History

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Chapter Summary

From the point of view of the experience which gives its words their connotations, religious vocabulary can be divided into two classes; (1) terms directly religious in their associations, and (2) those primarily associated with everyday experience. Hebrew berît belongs to the second class. It was experienced in society in a context larger than the explicitly and exclusively religious. Men made berît among themselves, as Jonathan did with David, or David with the northern tribes. This chapter deals directly with the reports of secular berît-making in the Deuteronomistic History. For one reason, most mentions of such berît-making occur here or can be dealt with indirectly in relation to texts from the History. Simply in quantitative terms these examples determine the general connotations of the word.

Keywords: covenant; David; Deuteronomistic History; Hebrew berît; Jonathan; secular berît



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