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Das Wasserwunder von Rephidim (Ex 17,1-7) als Schlüsseltext eines nachpriesterschriftlichen Mosebildes

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image of Vetus Testamentum

AbstractContrary to a still widespread belief, the story of Moses miraculously procuring water from the rock in Ex 17:1-7 is not of pre-Priestly origin. Rather, already the basic stratum of the text (Ex 17:1bβ, 3aβb, 4-6) proves to be a post-Priestly composition. It is part of what I label the ‘Stabbearbeitung’ which is first attested in Ex 4:17, 20b and has moreover left its traces in form of a set of additions to the first plague (Ex 7:15b, 17*, 20*) which is now presented as a miracle performed by Moses using his staff in front of an Egyptian audience. Together with the water miracle performed with the same staff in front of the elders (Ex 17:5-6), the ‘Stabbearbeitung’ prepares for Deut 34:11-12 where Moses is presented as a unique miracle worker. This late picture of Moses is further elaborated in subsequent post-Priestly expansions (Ex 15:23-26; 17:2, 3aα, 7* and 17:7-13, 15 [16a?]) through which the narrative sequence between the events at the sea of reeds and the arrival at the mountain of revelation gradually reached its present form.

Affiliations: 1: Georg-August-Universität Gö


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