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Literary Structure of the Old Testament


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#1 Dan Masshardt

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 03:24 PM

This is probably not a widely popular book, but one that I find helpful. It would be a great reference to have open in a workspace while studying an Old Testament passage.

The Literary Structure of the Old Testament by David Dorsey. Published by Baker.

Does anybody else use this book?
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#2 Ingo Sorke

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 09:42 PM

Love it. While most scholars scoff at the idea of chiastic structures, I think the case can be made that they do reveal at least some meaning of the text. I've often thought it would be intriguing to publish a Bible based on such structural concepts. Some chiasms are far fetched, some appear subjective, and not everybody would agree on everything of course, but still a worthwhile project IMHO.

Furthermore, it would be interesting to see to what extend language is quantifiable (predictable) by utilizing Accordance's search capabilities to trace chiastic patterns, as in Word A, Word B - Word A', Word B' (C', D' if present) within a range and relegate the task of detecting objectively verifiable parallelisms on the linguistic level to the software. This might even betray a measure of authorial intent.

Caveat emptor: I'm waiting for Snow Leopard to jump on the Mac bandwagon, so I wouldn't be much help in this regard till later.

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#3 Timothy Jenney

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Posted 27 February 2009 - 11:14 AM

I've often thought it would be great to have a Bible coded with the various genres in which a passage is written: prophetic oracle, historical narrative, enthronement psalm, miracle story, fable, proverb, etc. The reason is that most of us recognize that exegesis works differently in some of these literary forms.

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#4 davesalyer

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Posted 02 March 2009 - 10:47 AM

Second. To see Dorsey's outlines in parallel with the text would be helpful.

#5 Abram K-J

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 02:03 PM

Dorsey's work is probably my favorite single volume book on the OT. (He recently passed, may he RIP!)

 

I own a hard copy, but would gladly pay to have it in Accordance. It has recently made it to Logos, FWIW, though I'd rather have it in Accordance.


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#6 Abram K-J

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 12:14 PM

I'm preaching from/through Genesis this fall, and to map out my sermons, the very first place I'm turning (after prayer) is to this gem of a book, which I own in print. Would love to see it in Accordance!


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#7 Gordon

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 01:47 PM

Can you suggest any Bible commentary that especially focuses on and emphasizes this method of exploring literary structures in the Hebrew Bible?


‏ כִּ֤י לֶ֣קַח ט֭וֹב נָתַ֣תִּי לָכֶ֑ם תּֽ֝וֹרָתִ֗י אַֽל־תַּעֲזֹֽבוּ׃


#8 HansK

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 02:00 PM

The Companion Bible, suggested by me and others in a separate thread, is full of literary outlines, structures, chiasms etc.

It's a work mainly of E.W. Bullinger, famous for this Figures of Speech (available in Acc. and also contains outlines and structures here and there). Hope the Companion Bible will be release soon in Acc. :-)

 

I own the book by Dorsey and its a goldmine. Not all OT is covered the same way, some parts are more detailed than others.


Edited by HansK, 03 September 2014 - 02:02 PM.

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#9 Abram K-J

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 02:49 PM

Gordon--I just combed through Dorsey's introduction, closing section, and bibliography, but he doesn't seem to point to much in terms of commentaries taking a similar approach. (Though he does mention the Bible Hansk mentioned.)

 

It varies from volume to volume, but you probably already know the Word Biblical Commentary does some literary structural analysis. Zondervan's new series Hearing the Message of Scripture (I reviewed the Obadiah volume here, which includes some of the structural analysis that volume does) looks like it will have something to offer along these lines.


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#10 Gordon

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 03:13 PM

I wonder if James Kugel deals with this.  I'll have to peruse my library and see what i can find either in English or Hebrew.


‏ כִּ֤י לֶ֣קַח ט֭וֹב נָתַ֣תִּי לָכֶ֑ם תּֽ֝וֹרָתִ֗י אַֽל־תַּעֲזֹֽבוּ׃


#11 Helen Brown

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 03:14 PM

We are planning to add the Companion Bible, no time-frame yet.


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#12 Abram K-J

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Posted 03 September 2014 - 03:15 PM

Is the Dorsey book currently planned, too?


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#13 Helen Brown

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 12:43 AM

Not to my knowledge, but we will consider it.


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#14 Abram K-J

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 03:56 AM

Okay--thanks.


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#15 Alistair

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 09:28 AM

Word A', Word B' (C', D' if present) 

 

How do you say that out loud?  "ay-apostrophe?" "bee-apostrophe?"



#16 Joel Brown

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 10:13 AM

I usually say "A prime" "B prime".


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#17 Abram K-J

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Posted 04 September 2014 - 01:01 PM

^^ yep.


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