Who Said Jews Aren’t Interested in Biblical Theology?

Earlier this year I highlighted a popular essay by Jon Levenson entitled, “Why Jews are Not Interested in Biblical Theology.” There have been a few who have taken issue with Levensons claims, even while recognizing the many significant contributions he brings to the biblical theological discussion.

Ehud Ben Zvi has written what is, in my estimation, an equally significant essay, “Constructing the Past: The Recent History of Jewish Biblical Theology.”

This chapter explores how and why a diverse group of Jewish “biblicists” reached the mentioned widespread agreement [that Jews are not interested in Biblical theology], and, in particular, I would focus on the ways in which the construction of the past (and the social memory that it creates) shaped and reflected in this consensus is related to particular social and ideological contingencies. (34)

An offprint of the essay is available here. It is included in the volume edited by Isaac Kalimi, Jewish Bible Theology. You can find my review of the book in The Journal of Hebrew Scriptures.

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