Centralizing the Cult 978-3-16-157686-7 - Mohr Siebeck
Theology

Julia Rhyder

Centralizing the Cult

The Holiness Legislation in Leviticus 17–26

[Die Zentralisation des Kults. Das Heiligkeitsgesetz in Levitikus 17–26.]

2019. XXI, 484 pages.
forthcoming in October

Forschungen zum Alten Testament 134

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In this work, Julia Rhyder examines the Holiness legislation in Leviticus 17–26 and cultic centralization in the Persian period. Rather than presuming centralization as an established norm, Leviticus 17–26 forge a distinctive understanding of centralization around a central sanctuary, standardized ritual processes, and a hegemonic priesthood.
In this work, Julia Rhyder provides new insights into the relationship between the Holiness legislation in Leviticus 17–26 and processes of cultic centralization in the Persian period. The author departs from the classical theory that Leviticus 17–26 merely presume, with minor modifications, a concept of centralization articulated in Deuteronomy. She shows how Leviticus 17–26 use ritual legislation to make a new, and distinctive case as to why the Israelites must defer to a central sanctuary, standardized ritual processes, and a hegemonic priesthood. This discourse of centralization reflects the historical challenges that faced priests in Jerusalem during the Persian era: in particular, the need to compensate for the loss of a royal sponsor, to pool communal resources in order to meet socio-economic pressures, and to find new means of negotiating with the sanctuary at Mount Gerizim and with a growing diaspora.
Authors/Editors

Julia Rhyder Born 1987; studied Liberal Arts at the University of Melbourne, and Theology at the University of Divinity, Melbourne, Australia; 2018 Dr.theol. from the University of Lausanne, Switzerland; currently Swiss National Science Foundation senior researcher (Hebrew Bible) at the University of Basel, Switzerland.

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