Alien in one’s own country

Protestant theologian Jakob Wöhrle examines the so-called priestly passages of the Pentateuch

© Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht

In Old Testament research the literary character, the time and place as well as the intention of the so-called priestly passages of the Pentateuch are in discussion. The study shows that the priestly passages in the ancestors’ account – but only there – are to be understood as a redactional layer. The priestly redactors took up several sources and for the first time put them together to a continuous story. The priestly passages were written in the early Persian period by the returnees from the Babylonian exile. Through the ancestors they describe themselves as the real people of God. They enforce their claims to the land. And they present their idea of how to coexist with the nations in the neighbouring countries and with the people living in the land.

Literature: Wöhrle, Jakob, Fremdlinge im eigenen Land. Zur Entstehung und Intention der priesterlichen Passagen der Vätergeschichte (Forschungen zur Religion und Literatur des Alten und Neuen Testaments, vol. 246), Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht 2012.