Theology

Lisa J. Cleath

Divine Enthronement in a Conquered Land: Constructinga Landscape Monument in Josh 8:30–35

Volume 10 () / Issue 3, pp. 331-348 (18)
Published 01.02.2022

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This study reads Joshua 8:30–35 in light of ancient Near Eastern landscape monuments of the Late Bronze and Iron Ages. Building upon a long scholarly tradition that compares the Hebrew Bible's sepher hatorah to âde texts, a comparison to landscape monuments and monumental art at Birkleyn, Carchemish, and Zincirli highlights the significance of the geographical location of the inscription, the ritual performance in the monumental setting, and the transmission of this pericope itself as literary monumental art. In the book of Joshua, the narrative of Joshua 8:30–35 serves to emphasize YHWH's rule over the conquered lands of Canaan through the creation and activation of a monumental torah of Moses. This narrative conveys the enduring and socially efficacious mechanisms of a monumental inscription in ancient Near Eastern contexts, here serving the larger socio-political purposes of the Deuteronomistic History.
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