Editors David J A Clines Philip R Davies

JSOT Press Sheffield

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Rolf Rendtorff
Translated by John J. Scullion

Journal for the Study of the Old Testament Supplement Series 89

17. Bible. Überlieferungsgeschichtliche Problem des Pentateuch. 1977) © 1977 by Walter de Gruyter & Co.T.. Berlin This translation copyright © 1990 Sheffield Academic Press Published by JSOT Press JSOT Press is an imprint of Sheffield Academic Press Ltd The University of Sheffield 343 Fulwood Road Sheffield S10 3BP England Printed on acid-free paper in Great Britain by Billing & Sons Ltd Worcester British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data Rendtorff. Series III.—Critical studies I. The problem of the process of transmission in the Pentateuch 1. Pentateuch. R. Title II.Originally published as Das iiberlieferungsgeschichtliche Problem des Pentateuch (BZAW.106 ISSN 0309-0787 ISBN 1-85075-229-X . de Gruyter. O. English 222. Berlin: W.

2 The promises in the divine addresses in the Abraham story 2.2 The story of Abraham 2.1 The variety of layers in the process of transmission of the Abraham tradition 2.2.2 The promise of descendants 2. and Isaac 2.5 The combination of individual promise themes 2.3 The blessing 2.3.4 The question of the 'larger units' 31 Chapter 2 THE PATRIARCHAL STORIES AS EXAMPLES OF A 'LARGER UNIT' WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE PENTATEUCH 2.3.4 The function of the promise addresses in the composition of the patriarchal story 2.2 The modification of this approach by Martin Noth 16 1.3.1 The new approach of Gerhard von Rad 12 1. Jacob.4 The guidance 2.3 The promises to the patriarchs 2.CONTENTS Foreword Translator's Note 7 9 Chapter 1 THE PROCESS OF TRANSMISSION AND THE DOCUMENTARY HYPOTHESIS 11 1.2.5 The absence of any definite reworking in Exodus-Numbers 43 43 48 49 52 55 57 61 64 66 68 74 84 .1 The promise of the land The documentary hypothesis maintained 24 1.1 The stories of Joseph.

2.2.3 The problem of the synthesizing.2.3.6 The larger units' in Exodus-Numbers 2.3 The function of the priestly layer 3.3.4 Genesis 23 3.1 Chronological notes 3.2 The other 'larger units' 4.2.4 Reasons against the acceptance of a Yahwistic work 3.2.4 No priestly narrative.1 The stories of Joseph and Isaac 3.2 Characteristics of the work of the Yahwist 3. but a layer of priestly reworking 3.2 The Jacob story 3.2.2 Theological'passages 3.4.3 The problem of a priestly narrative in the patriarchal story 3.3 The Abraham story Synthesis Chapter 4 CONCLUSIONS AND CONSEQUENCES 4.1 Literary analysis of the Yahwist 3.3 The theology of the Yahwist 3.3.1 Dissent from the documentary hypothesis The priestly layer in the patriarchal story 3.1 The patriarchal story 4.2 The larger units' in the Pentateuch 4. final arrangement of the Pentateuch Index of Biblical References Index of Authors 90 94 101 102 108 108 119 126 133 136 138 140 146 154 156 157 163 167 169 170 177 178 181 181 184 189 207 213 .2 The problem of the Yahwist 3.1 The present state of pentateuchal criticism 3.7 Traces of an over-arching reworking Chapter 3 CRITICISM OF PENTATEUCHAL CRITICISM 3.

the documentary hypothesis could not be sustained. to devote my attention entirely to these questions and. in intensive exchange with them. Finally there are Konrad Rupprecht. of many years of confrontation with the basic methodological questions of pentateuchal criticism. there are my Heidelberg colleagues with whom the dialogue has been. without whose constant consultation and co-operation the book would never have appeared. Discussions with colleagues of other countries provided many a stimulus to concentrate more intensively on these questions. . after many earlier meetings and discussions. First. I tried to show that as a result of a consistent traditio-historical approach. and is still being. to clarify them further. In Edinburgh in 1974. 5-11). VT Supp. And so it is no mere chance that a variety of earlier papers on this complex of questions reflect these discussions.FOREWORD This book marks the terminal. the Tahwist' (T)er "Yahwist" als Theologe? Zum Dilemma der Pentateuchkritik'. a new approach to pentateuchal study is to be outlined on a broader basis. I finally questioned the existence of the main pillar of the documentary hypothesis. for the time being. I have to thank many with whom I have been able to discuss these questions in the course of the years. carried on in a variety of ways. Then there are my colleagues and friends in Jerusalem. pp. In the lecture 'Literarkritik und Traditionsgeschichte' in Uppsala in 1965 (EvTh 27 [1967] 138-153) I still supported the view that the current solution to the problems of the Pentateuch was still the most plausible despite all critical trimming. 28 [1975] 158-66). they gave me the opportunity. as guest of the Hebrew University in the winter semester 197374. Here. In my contribution Traditio-Historical Method and the Documentary Hypothesis' in Jerusalem in 1969 (Proceedings of the Fifth World Congress of Jewish Studies.

SchriesheinVHeidelberg.8 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch and Erhard Blum who co-operated in the preparation of the manuscript and the proof-reading and prepared the index of biblical passages. I thank the German Research Council (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft) which enabled me to spend a first period of study in Jerusalem in 1966. July 1975 Rolf Rendtorff .

TRANSLATOR'S NOTE In Das iiberlieferungsgeschichtliche Problem des Pentateuchs (BZAW 147. and to Professor David J. 110-16. Berlin: W. But the documentary hypothesis is a hypothesis and not an article of faith as many scholars. It is hoped that the English version of Rendtorff s contribution will help a wider range of English-speaking students to make up their own minds on the complex matter in Old Testament studies and perhaps go their own independent way.N. de Gruyter. and. p. His approach has met with strong disagreement. He concludes that the classical documentary hypothesis has been tried in the fire and found wanting. 116). A Methodological Study (JSOT Supp. The references in the notes are to the standard English versions. in some quarters. I am grateful to Professor Rendtorff for his lively interest in the translation during my stay in Heidelberg (January-June 1989). seem to presume. VT 39 [1989]. cautious agreement. Emerton has written of R. Whybray's The Making of the Pentateuch. Clines of the Department of . and traces briefly in his preface the scholarly path that led him to this conclusion. showing a stubborn unwillingness to consider seriously another approach. The English versions of most of the German works from which citations appear in the original were not available to me while I was preparing the translation in Heidelberg. It is sometimes said that Rendtorff has not disproved the documentary hypothesis. 1977). Rolf Rendtorff is interested above all in the process by which the Pentateuch reached the form in which it now lies before us. relief and a readiness to look for other ways than that of the documentary hypothesis to explain the formation of the Pentateuch. as the distinguished Cambridge semitist J. I have given my own translation of these.A. Series 53 [1987].A. especially in the German-speaking area.

for his encouragement. and co-director of Sheffield Academic Press. United Faculty of Theology Melbourne John J.10 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch Biblical Studies. Scullion S. University of Sheffield. Victoria 3052 Australia .J. Newman College University of Melbourne Parkville.

This does not necessarily mean that they come to opposite conclusions.. Koch. it is surprising that so far there have scarcely been any studies of the relationship to each other of these two basically different approaches. p. The main reason for this is obvious. Koch describes literary criticism as a 'part of form-criticism'. The one is the literary-critical method which. Consequently. individual units. but from the smallest. The two methods therefore are opposed to each other in their starting point and in their statement of the question. takes its point of departure not from the final form of the written text of the Pentateuch. 2 K. op. 77. 1969. but of a fundamental alteration of the statement of the question. The Form Critical Method. and traces the process of their development right up to their final written form. since Gunkel. However. The other is the method of form-criticism and the history of the process of transmission which. one could speak quite frankly of 'an extension of the methods by means of form criticism'1 without realizing clearly or even mentioning that it is in fact not a matter of an extension.2 The procedure is often that which Westermann 1 K. . originally independent. Koch. two methods of approach stand juxtaposed. in the classical form that it has taken since Wellhausen. Those scholars who developed or make use of the form-critical and traditio-historical method adhere almost without exception to literary source division. The Growth of the Biblical Tradition.Chapter 1 THE PROCESS OF TRANSMISSION AND THE DOCUMENTARY HYPOTHESIS In the present state of pentateuchal research. distinguishes continuous literary 'sources' running through the Pentateuch. cit.

2 and M. 3 M. 1966). in The Problem of the Hexateuch and Other Essays. At the same time. 1-78. Westermann. 1984. A History of Pentateuchal Traditions (1948. (Eng. which was deemed to be no longer worth any serious discussion in itself. and the study of individual pieces of material on the other. The Form-Critical Problem of the Hexateuch' (1938. these two works. have had a lasting influence on pentateuchal studies. has not yet developed fully. And so I deliberately take up two works which.3 The problem of the process of transmission of pentateuchal traditions will be developed here on the basis of. I take up their approaches partly in a critical vein. 2 G. Von Rad's perception was that this process of disintegration pertained especially to the final form of the Hexateuch. vague or clear. since Gunkel. . Genesis 1-11. (German 1938). They are: G. 1966). that the process was irreversible'. Noth. had introduced 'a process of disintegration on a large scale': and many scholars had been paralysed *by an awareness. von Rad. rather it served merely as a 1 C. it intends to bring out more strongly than hitherto the criticism of the literary-critical source division which is inherent in the different methodological approach.1981. von Rad. Noth. He saw that the reaso for the general 'scholarly lassitude' lay in this: the analysis of the Pentateuch into sources on the one hand.12 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch criticized in Noth's method: 'both methods are merely added together mechanically in such a way that the text is treated now according to one. (1966-1974) Eng.1 But the consequence of this procedure is that the form-critical approach. A History of Pentateuchal Traditions. 1972. 1. Eng. The present work is an attempt to show the reasons for this and to advance a step further towards this goal. 1972. Eng. now according to the other'. and partly to carry them further. in its attempt to progress by means of the traditio-historical approach. 573. 'The Form-Critical Problem of the Hexateuch'. pp.1 Gerhard von Rod's new approach Von Rad wanted to break a deadlock that had been reached in pentateuchal (hexateuchal) research. p. (German 1948) Eng. and in critical dialogue with. 1981).

3. 1-3.2 and his initiative has had far-reaching effects beyond this area. has been of far-reaching significance for Old Testament theology. cit. the importance that he ascribes to the Tabwist' for the final shape of the Pentateuch. 3 See below. are in some way recognizable'. as was von Rad's intention. even when the authors quoted speak of the Hexateuch. originally independent. His thesis of the 'small historical Credo' has provoked a variety of form-critical and traditio-historical works.. the recognition that there was available a variety of complexes of tradition. Finally. But it has diverted attention from the one-sided emphasis on literary analysis. 2 We will speak of the Pentateuch in what follows. its 'setting in life' and its further extension right up to the very expanded form in which it now lies before us. He did so by means of form-criticism. and so to a new 1 Von Rad. which were originally independent. attempting to understand the whole Hexateuch as 'genre' (Gattung) 'from which it must be supposed that. 1. the other.3 However. to a concern for the larger units.1 Von Rad has given new and substantial stimulus to hexateuchal (pentateuchal) study with this fresh approach. Two principal features of von Rad's work have had further consequences for the Pentateuch itself: the one. and further. were collected and passed on. the subdivision of the pentateuchal traditions into several independent complexes of tradition. it has led beyond the treatment of individual pieces of material which featured so prominently in the works of Gunkel and Gressmann. pp. Von Rad therefore directed attention once more to this final form. his interpretation of the large complexes of tradition in which the pentateuchal traditions. The Documentary Hypothesis 13 13 point of departure 'from which one got away as quickly as possible to deal with the real problems lying behind it'.1. has not yet thrown clearer light on the final shape of the Pentateuch. and the consequence of his stating the question of the cultic setting of the different basic themes in the process of pentateuchal traditions has been an entirely new branch of research into the history of cult. . The term Hexateuch will be used only where it is actually required.. op..

cit. Noth. Tassahfest und Passahlegende'. 3 J. cit. op. This is the case above all with the Sinai tradition.3 regards Exodus 1-14 as a further complex of tradition. 4 Von Rad.5 Von Rad underscores here the internal connection with the pentateuchal traditions by means of the orientation towards the taking of the land.. across their broader development and insertion into smaller and larger collections.2 Von Rad. Das Buck Josua.. 5 M.6 However. 1953 (2nd edn). and so for him 'it is no longer just a literary question with J and E. op. . 'in all its essential elements issued into a fixed form' before the tradition settled down to its literary shape in the liexateuchal sources JE. a genuine exodus tradition which is clearly distinct from the tradition of the occupation of the land'. Pedersen. 18-19. this latter is to be regarded 'rather as a later procedure.1 Von Rad recognizes several larger complexes of tradition in the Pentateuch which stand out clearly from each other. with one of the pentateuchal sources or. whose method of working Noth had discerned in his commentary on Joshua. with the Yahwist and the Elohist'.4 This tradition too was at the disposal of the Yahwist. Exodus 19-24. separate him completely from them. And so von Rad insists that the process of formation of this complex has. following Pedersen.e.14 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch branch of the study of the historical process of tradition. p. right up to the whole as it now lies before us. p. 2 Von Rad. cit. 1938.. I understand Uberlieferungsgeschichte as the whole process of the formation of the tradition which extends from origin of the smallest units.. in the long run. 76. 'We have here. following 1 With Noth. 52. p. op. the question arises whether one can identify the 'collector' of the Gilgal stories. With regard to the tradition of the occupation of the land. With regard to the patriarchal story von Rad. 6 Von Rad. cit. op.. clearly recognizable as a selfcontained unit. perhaps even the end stage'. i. pp. 1.. ZAW 52 (1934) 161-75. Here is found a self-contained complex of tradition which originally had no connection at all with the preceding tradition of the exodus from Egypt and the wandering in the desert. the question remains unresolved. as Noth had done... but just as much a question of genre'.

. 5 Op.p. originally independent. and for this certain principles of organization clearly hold good.. 65.. Since Gunkel.. ci*. 6 Op.p. the union of the Jacob-Esau cycle and the Jacob-Laban cycle. 4 Op. cif.2S-33). many texts are linked which. apart from intelligent guessing. Von Rad now opens up the question about a stage which is intermediate between the smallest units and the final shape of the whole coherent narrative complex. units had passed over the old source analysis which took its point of departure from the final form of the text.5 just as is the 'joining together of the primeval story and the story of salvation' (12. 25 (Eng.1 As for the Jacob stories.4 The primeval story too forms an independent composition whose shape derives 'from a series of originally independent pieces of material'.. p. 58.3 Finally he writes: 'It is generally accepted that the Yahwist found the Joseph story a novella already complete and self-contained in its essentials.24).6 These studies of von Rad gave pentateuchal research a new theme. For the Abraham stories.1-3). and they are fitted together with each other so as to produce new larger units. p. 3 Von Rad sees the beginning of the Penuel story only in v.. the independence of these larger units.10-22) and Penuel (32.59. 59. but 'which is certainly the work of the Yahwist'.p. he supposes that the union of the Abraham and Lot cycles was data available to the Yahwist 'though he often sees the hand of the Yahwist at work giving theological direction'. though it is all but impossible. and fitted it into his work'.. p. on the other hand. op. On the one hand. cit. 2 Ibid. and the quite different and independent devel1 Ibid. . recognized different groups of stories of very different kinds.64.59. form critically..1. attention to the smallest. cif. The most conspicious feature is the regular thematic matching within the individual complexes of tradition. von Rad believes that he can recognize him in the arrangement of the cult-stories of Bethel (28. to demonstrate the part that the Yahwist played'. was already complete'. v. are of quite different kinds. The Documentary Hypothesis 15 Gunkel.2 At best.

cf.16 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch opment of each of them. since that moment. It was described as the 'first part' of a planned series of studies which had as its object 'the historical works of the Old Testament which were the subjects of collections and reworkings'. According to Noth's explanation the Deuteronomist' (Dtr) too found a whole series 1 His understanding of Ubearlieferungsgeschichte (the process of the formation of tradition) is indebted at least to the suggestions made by Hermann Gunkel. Ringgren. 1. A survey of the deuteronomistic historical work shows striking features in common with those concrete elements which von Rad had worked out for the Pentateuch. Rendtorff.1 It is appropriate to give precedence and attention to the first of Noth's two great works which bear this catchword in their titles. that Noth is likewise concerned here with the very same stage of the process of development from which the works lying before us. The close association consists in this. .2 The modification of this approach by Martin Noth The basic contribution which Martin Noth made to the further progress of pentateuchal scholarship finds its clearest expression in that he brought into the discussion the concept of the 'history of the process of tradition' which. 2 M. has taken a strong hold on the attention of subsequent scholarship. Die sammelnden und bearbeitenden Geschichtswerke im Alien Testament. R. Uberlieferungsgeschichte'. 'Literarkritik und Traditionsgeschichte'. has become the determining leitmotif of all Old Testament scholarship. 'Literarkritik. H. reached their final shape out of various elements in the course of transmission of the traditions. emerges. 1957 (2nd edn). Formgeschichte. Noth. 1943. ThLZ 91 (1966) 641-50. In 1943 he published 'Studies in the History of the Process of Traditions'.2 In his introductory remarks Noth takes his stand explicitly in strict and historical continuity with von Rad's work on the Hexateuch. Uberlieferungsgeschichtliche Studien. EvTh 27 (1967) 138-53. This distinction of larger complexes of tradition. each coloured by its own theme. namely the deuteronomic and chronistic histories. far beyond the limits of pentateuchal research. The idea takes a somewhat different form in the Uppsala-school'.

p. at least in several instances. arranged in the way in which he could or wanted to use it for his total presentation. individual traditions which were often described as the 'smallest literary units'.17 17 of cases at hand to him in which. Eissfeldt. 61-62.3 They form the proper object of form-critical study.1962. But neither approach took as the object of its study the path that led from the individual traditions to the larger complexes. Both approaches reckon with larger complexes of tradition. and he describes this Yahwist as the 'forerunner' of his Deuteronomist (op.. under the catch-phrase 'the history of the process of tradition' (Uberlieferungsgeschichte).2). working with the presupposition that in each case the complexes have grown together or been assembled out of individual traditions. cit. 3 Already. An Introduction to the Old Testament (1964.. O. both the intent and statement of the question agree in substance with the task that von Rad undertook for the Pentateuch. pp. 'Die kleinste literarische Einheit in den Erzahlungbiichern des AT'. 123-49. The work as a whole had acquired the shape in which it now lies before us out of a series of complexes of tradition.2 And so. Die . 2. Despite the different starting points. Noth dealt with the final stage of the process of development. 2 Noth compares the work of the Deuteronomist expressly with that work which von Rad attributes to the Yahwist. In 1 Op. The last observation is of significance inasmuch as both scholars were aware that they were very profoundly under the influence of Gunkel's form-critical work.1 There were other cases in which the Deuteronomist was able to or had to intervene to shape the material at his disposal because it was too little. cit. 1965. larger complexes of tradition had already been joined together. One can well invoke Gunkel himself in this context. already formed. Gunkel had directed his special attention to the original. 3rd edn) Eng. smaller or larger. or not at all. n. This is true especially for the beginnings of the monarchy of which Noth says: Tor the history of David and Saul the Dtr had at his disposal the broad complex of SaulDavid traditions which had already grown together long beforehand out of the stories of David's rise and the problem o the succession'. ThBl 6 (1927) 333-37 = Kleine Schriften 1.


The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch

contrast, the union of several originally independent units represents a second stage in the process of formation. Gunkel paid attention to this stage and in some cases spoke of'cycles of stories'. However, he did not develop any methodological criteria for discerning collections of this kind, but rather expressed his observations in a very loose and casual way;1 he attached no particular importance to this question. The same holds true for Gressmann's important work, Mose und seine Zeit (1913). This is all the more striking as Gressmann's statement of the question in general points very clearly in the direction of the later work on the history of the process of tradition. Gressmann likewise does not go beyond very general formulations when giving criteria for 'cycles of stories'.2 There exists therefore an obvious gap between the study of the original smallest units and the question of the final shape, formed out of larger complexes of tradition, of the works as they now lie before us. The path from the smallest units to the larger complexes, known as larger literary units',3 has not yet been methodically trod and examined. This gap stands out as a basic defect when one takes as the point of departure the statement of the program of the process of the history of tradition as Noth has formulated it in A History of Pentateuchal Traditions. He outlines the 'growth and gradual formation of the larger blocks of tradition which lie before us today in the extensive and complicated literary shape which is the Pentaisraelitische Literatur, 1925. 1 H. Gunkel, Genesis (9th edn, 1977), cf. p. 4 n. 5. 2 H. Gressmann, Mose und seine Zeit. Ein Kommentar zu den MoseSagen, 1913, p. 386: 'The cycles of stories can comprise smaller and larger units. They are there wherever several individual stories have been strung together to form a loose composition. Stories which deal with the same material or with a related theme have no need at all to be brought together into a group. Rather, because of the fragility of the individual narrative, due to its original independence, some sort of continuous thread must be spun out which leads from one story to another'. 3 Gunkel speaks of larger units', as does Eissfeldt, See further, A. Bentzen, Introduction to the Old Testament, 1,1952 (2nd edn) = 1959 (5th edn), 'From the Smallest Literary Units to the Great Literary Complexes', pp. 2523*.

1. The Documentary Hypothesi


teuch' as a long process, leading from the formation in oral tradition, across the written record, up to the purely literary redaction. He then continues: It is the task of the history of the process of tradition in the Pentateuch to trace this process from beginning to end'.1 Noth explains what his intention is. His main interest is not so much 'to attend to the later and more and more purely literary procedures... but rather to those beginnings that were decisive for the coming into being of the whole and to the first stages of growth'.2 However, he then went on to speak in great detail about the questions of the final literary shape,3 but not about the intermediate stages of the history of the process. And therein lies a notable unevenness in his work. The major part of his presentation deals with 'the pre-literary history of the formation and growth of the process to what is ultimately, in all essentials, a definitively shaped work';4 it is concerned therefore 'in essence with what is still the oral process of formation and shaping'.5 Then, after a few remarks about 'clamps, genealogies, and itineraries',6 he jumps to the end of the process of formation and occupies himself with the traditional 'pentateuchal sources'7 without having given any consideration to the various stages of the intermediate literary shaping and process of tradition.8 Noth's own methodological approach should have suggested that he study more precisely the final phase of the literary arrangement as he had in the deuteronomistic history; that is, like von Rad, he should have traced the path from the larger literary complexes of tradition to their assembly and arrangement in the 'pentateuchal sources'. On the other hand, given the exegetical tradition in which Noth
1 Noth, cf. op. cit., p. 1, n. 5.
2 Op. cit.

3 Op. cit., par. 15, 16.
4 Op. cit., p. 44. 5 Op. cit., p. 198.

6 See headings to par. 11,12,14. 7 Op. cit., par. 15. 8 The second part of A History of Pentateuchal Traditions carries a heading whose claim was not discharged: The Coalescence of Themes and Individual Traditions.


The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch

stands, one would have expected a treatment of the smallest narrative units in which the material passed on had taken shape. Finally, Noth's own programme, to trace the history of the process of tradition 'from to end', should have suggested a treatment of the path from the smallest units to the larger complexes of tradition so as to arrive at a coherent picture of the whole process. Noth himself has given the reason why he did not take up and carry through the programme as outlined. Following vo Rad, he took as his starting point the task of unravelling the main basic themes of the Pentateuch as a whole before undertaking an analysis of the material passed on. In this, he accepted von Rad's thesis of the 'historical Credo' as the fundamental principle that shaped the Pentateuch (Hexateuch), at the same time re-interpreting it in decisive and successful wise. Whereas von Rad was concerned with definite complexes of tradition, and so with concrete literary arrangement which were brought together and disposed under the guiding view-points in the credal formulations, and given further shape by means of'inset' (Einbau), 'extension' (Ausbau), and 'remodeling' (Umbau),1 Noth speaks of'themes' which have determined the shape of the Pentateuch. He sees that 'the main task... is to unravel those basic themes out of which the great whole of the Pentateuch as handed on has grown, to lay bare their roots, to trace their complementation from individual pieces of material passed on, to pursue how they were joined with each other, and to make a judgment on their significance'.2 The elements of von Rad's Credo, being described as 'themes', underwent a decisive process of abstraction. From now on, they appear primarily as concepts and ideas which can be developed in a variety of ways and joined with each other and all sorts of other concepts and ideas. Scarcely any attention is paid to their concrete relationship to a particular setting in life or even to their concrete narrative or literary
1 Cf. the corresponding headings and sub-divisions of the chapter on the Yahwist in von Rad's The Form-Critical Problem', pp. 52, 54, 63. 2 Noth, A History, p. 3.

1. The Documentary Hypothesis


development. On the contrary, in the case of the basic theme, 'the leading out from Egypt', the question of the setting in life is rejected explicitly: 'inasmuch as this confession was of too general importance; it was such that it could, or had to be, recited on every cultic occasion that permitted a hymn'.1 With the other themes too this question, so far as it is even raised, has no real significance. One must speak of abstraction here in yet another sense. Noth distinguishes between the *basic themes',2 or 'the main themes of the tradition'3 as they are later called, on the one hand, and 'the complementation from individual pieces of material passed on'4 or 'the filling out of the standard thematic frame with individual pieces of material handed on',5 on the other. Accordingly, everything that does not belong to the main themes is regarded as 'filling out' and so its significance is substantially limited. But even in this limited framework, Noth's interest is directed not to the concrete shaping of the narrative but to the 'enriching of the basic main themes with further traditional material, while the detailed development by means of narrative art is to be regarded rather as an aside'.6 The reason why Noth's work cannot be linked immediately with that of Gunkel becomes clear here, because it is just this 'detailed development by means of narrative art' that was of decisive interest to Gunkel.7 It must be expressly emphasized here that there can be no question at all of calling into doubt the value and significance of Noth's work. On the contrary, it must be heavily underscored that Noth's studies have given rise to numerous insights into the history of the origin and growth of the Pentateuch and brought a variety of stimuluses to Old Testament 1 Op. cit., pp. 49-50.
2 3 4 5 6 1

Op. cit., p.B. Heading to par. 7. Op. cit., p. 3. Heading to par. 8. Op. cit., p.65. Cf. further Westermann, 'Arten der Erzahlung in der Genesis', Forschung am Alten Testament, 1964, pp. 9-91: 'The individual narrative... and what happens in it, recedes (in Noth's presentation) in a remarkable way' (p. 35).

In many ways. without taking account of the 1 Noth explicitly denies that the growth of the Pentateuch took place in this way when he maintains that its 'form. Consequently... to the procedure of Noth's traditio-historical programme It is the fact that Noth.. they have followed them further to the formation of larger complexes of tradition and ultimately to the final literary stage. This would be in a way the first phase of the process of the history of tradition. the limits of Noth's methodological approach must be pointed out. and after him von Rad in particular as well as others.. then. is not the subsequent and final result of the simple grouping together and arranging in sequence of individual traditions and individual complexes o traditions. having developed a comprehensive understanding of the task of the study of the process of the history of tradition. Gunkel. much of what is found in the important observations of Noth on the history of the process of tradition would have to be accepted on the understanding that it would be set in the context of the pre-literary history of the traditions now preserved in fixed concrete texts. . von Rad and others proceeded by and large in this way without.22 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch research. it would be in order to proceed in such a way that the form-critical determination of an individual text as the smallest conceivable unit of tradition forms the point of departure.1 And so once more it is back to Gunkel's approach. p. Noth actually deals with the pre-history of concrete narratives in such a way that a methodological link between the interpretation of the texts developed by Gunkel and the question of the pre-history of the traditions embodied in them is entirely possible. Methodologically. however. His work at the same time bypasses the concrete text. Consequently. 2). Gunkel. We must now take up a further critical objection. However. already noted. cit. at the very beginning of the formation of the traditions. it is not possible with his approach to arrive at a history of the process of formation of the Pentateuch which takes as its point of departure the concrete shape of the texts. but. the further question of the pre-history of the text and the traditions embodied in it would be put. there was a small number of themes that were essential for the faith of the Israelite tribes' (op. thence. have made these the objects of their study and exegesis.. Gressmann.

accounts of the whole pentateuchal material which have been brought together in a 'redaction'. The form-critical method and its application mean a basically new approach in the matter of access to the pentateuchal texts. one should consult the appropriate sections in the standard introductions to the OT. individual text. and on the other. cit. consists of several. The Pentateuch as a whole as it lies before us is no longer the point of departure. are not yet a matter of attention in this approach. III. The contexts in which each individual text now stands. namely: is the final form of the Pentateuch as it lies before us a unity or not? Source division as used hitherto makes sense only as an answer to this question. 1413-19. presupposes the existence of 'pentateuchal sources' in the traditional literary-critical sense and includes them within his presentation of the traditio-historical process.par. R. however large. but rather the concrete individual text. 'Pentateuchkritik'. The Documentary Hypothesis 23 literary growth of the tradition. seeking to explain the tensions and contradictions and inquiring about its coherence with the context. cols. 1959. as soon as access to the pentateuchal texts is set in the context of the form-critical method. has meaning only as an answer to this question. 109-14. inasmuch as it explains that the present text. a fundamental distinction must be made between literary analysis on the one hand. the traditional 1 Op. in particular for the 'complementary hypothesis' and the 'fragmentary hypothesis'. The work begins as it were at the opposite end. Also: R. 211-17. 1966. The documentary hypothe sis. Ploger. the 'smallest literary unit'. RGG (3rd edn) 1961.. whatever different shapes it may take. The different 'sources' of the Pentateuch was the answer to a particular question. III. and it is with this that we are now concerned. taken as a whole. However. Smend. as it puts the question of unity to a concrete. 'Pentateuch'.1 Some fundamental remarks are necessary here.2 So then. the statement of the question is basically altered.1. . 2 For other hypotheses about the formation of the Pentateuch. EKL. when all is said. cols. nor must they be the primary concern of the interpreter. 2-5. 'Pentateuch'. originally independent. BHHW. cols. O. Rendtorff. This does not mean that there is no place for questions of literary criticism.

the source theory offers the most enlightening answer to the questions which arise from the final shape of the text. often it is only then that one can delimit the original smallest unit. And so the attempt must be made to show the reasons why tradition-history and source division are still for the most part applied side by side. at the end of the traditiohistorical inquiry. But they must be related on each occasion to the stage of the formation of the tradition and limited thereby. But all this has nothing at all to do with the question of whether individual elements.24 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch division into sources. however. This requires that the literary-critical questions as well be put at all phases of the traditio-historical inquiry.3. It is a fundamental error when literary-critical work on the Pentateuch is equated with source division in the traditional sense. 1. Recent study of the Pentateuch. which literary criticism has shown to be separate from each other. I see two main reasons for this. both adhered to source division. The documentary hypothesis maintained It is the task of the traditio-historical method which builds on the form-critical statement of the question in the way in which Noth formulated the programme. one is only justified in accepting continuous 'sources' in the Pentateuch when. There will be many cases in which a correct form-critical determination of a text will be rendered possible only after particular literary-critical questions have been put and answered. Only at the end of the inquiry into the process of the history of the tradition can the question of the literary-critical judgment of the final shape be put. as is so often the case today. belong to particular 'sources' in the sense of continuous 'documents'. This could give rise to the impression that the two methods belonged together or in any case could be joined together with- . to pursue the whole process of the formation of the tradition right up to the present final literary stage. From the standpoint of the traditio-historical approach. and likewise his pupil Gressmann. One consists in the fact that Gunkel. shows that this is scarcely ever the case.

5 In the long run therefore it is merely a matter of giving terms to passages which. In his view the distinction of J from E can only rarely be carried out with any sort of certainty'. but schools of narrators. can say nothing about its methodological justification. The Documentary Hypothesis 25 out difficulty. But for it to establish itself and to find justification for the abundance of variants. so that this fact in itself. EvTh 27 (1967) 148ff. Ixxxv. The second.3 Gressmann goes even a step further. one must try in the meantime to come to terms with the hypothesis of JE. the symbols JE are indispensable. and never reveal themselves with certainty'. The other reason for adhering to source division in the traditio-historical context is simply that von Rad conferred a new profile on the Yahwist. Genesis. 368. never forgetting that it is a hypothesis. applied the separation of sources in a far less stringent manner than is generally done today.2 And so he continues: "«F and 'E' therefore are not individual writers. and particularly Gressmann. p. He portrayed in a 1 2 3 4 5 So too Rendtorff.1 The first thing to be said to this is that frequently in the history of research. Ixxxiv. considered from our present point of view. that it is clear that Gunkel. Ibid. He attributed to him the central role in the definitive formation of the Hexateuch. Mose und seine Zeit. from the literarycritical point of view. but have arisen in the course of a history'. are separate from each other. there is only a gradual awareness of the consequences of a new methodological approach.1. p. The sources have not each its own profile. Gunkel emphasized that liere (i. p.e. Nevertheless. Above all.4 and he adds: 'In many cases JE are nothing more than labels which can be exchanged at will. they did not see themselves in a position to recognize the 'Personalities' of the authors of the written sources. with the Tahwist' and the 'Elohist') it is not a question of unities or even of collocations of unities. but of collections which are not from one mould and cannot have been completed at one stroke. even though they can lay claim only to relative validity'. Ibid. Gunkel. . What individual hands contributed to the whole is thus a matter of relative indifference because they differ very little individually.

52). traditions are gathered together in a powerful work of composition under a dominant idea and become literature'.7 That this role belongs to the Yahwist derives apparently... whether instead of reckoning with one 'great collector and moulder* it were better to reckon with 'a gradual. 48.50. cit. but that liere.6 He begins without more ado: The Yahwist marks for Israel the intervention that we see continually recurring in the spiritual history of many peoples: old. because he obviously saw in it no problem at all. 7 Op. Op.26 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch most impressive way the great achievement of the Yahwist as composer and moulder. from the generally acknowledged image of source division in which the substantial section of the narrative material of the tradition is ascribed to the Yahwist. 59. the Yahwist is the one who. a theological achievement is to be seen here. cf. Op. pp. p. Von Rad. Von Rad discusses only the question. Op. cit.. to the basic on-going tradition'.1 and he worked out with particular emphasis that. cit. p. anonymous process of growth' (op. p.35..27.. p. But the switch-points have already been set in another direction. . pp. more basic question. cit.53. Op. 'took up the material which had broken free from the cult and preserved it in the firm grip of his literary composition'. a'*... often widely scattered. 52.29. 67-68. without it being said explicitly. notes 17. 51. Svhether we are to consider the work of the Yahwist as that of a collector or of a 1 2 3 4 5 6 'The Form-Critical Problem'.3 The result is a 'massive work'. speaks of the Yahwist only in a casual way... up to this point.4 and 'it is astounding how firmly it was possible to bind the bewildering abundance of the assembled traditions. p. He underscored that in this case there could be no question of an anonymous growth. one plan is at work'. on the same literary level as the other sources.. He touches only the other. 15-16.2 In von Rad's view. cit. p. in a powerful theological work.5 Why did von Rad attribute this role precisely to the Yahwist? It is surprising to note that von Rad did not put this question. before all else. without giving him any notable pre-eminence.

cit. of their growth and their readers is after all open and is likely to remain so.2 The picture therefore has basically changed: there is not a number pentateuchal (hexateuchal) sources of more or less equal worth which have been joined together by a process of redaction. rather the Yahwist has provided a basic arrangement. But these problems are of a different sort from what we are discussing here. pp. But it is all too clear how far von Rad has thereby distanced himself from the original conception of source division which understands sources as parallel and for the most part constituent parts of essentially equal value in the final shape of the present text. from the form-critical point of view. and in essence can only be understood.. introduces nothing essentially new over and above what has been discussed. though only of one of them. 2 Op..74. as something theological. the Yahwist. The form of the Hexateuch is definitively the Yahwist's'. . p. and the 'stratification' of the two other sources in relationship to this work remains basically opaque.1 But the possibility that another than the Yahwist could have brought to completion this 'massive work of composition' is never considered. This shows that von Rad has here simply taken over something already available. an entirely satisfying and explicable phenomenon! The question of the origin and destiny of these two works. and 1 Op. But this is to be understood. This new understanding of the Yahwist marks too a basic change in respect of Gunkel and Gressmann who denied any possibility of recognizing the individuality or personality of any of the authors of the pentateuchal sources. The stratification of E and P in relationship to J and their binding together is a purely literary matter and so. 'the form of the Hexateuch is definitively his'. The Documentary Hypothesis 27 writer'. 50-51. There is here so to speak a re-discovery of the personality of the authors of the sources. cit.1. Von Rad assigns them a subordinate place and maintains at the same time that their relationships to each other remain in the long run unexplained: 'Not that the way in which E and P are related to J is for us something transparent.

inasmuch as it pointed con- 1 A History. . the common basic source that Noth accepts for J and E) and so belong to the same material as that already taken over by J. 'the forecourt (Vorbau). so necessary for the forming of themes. the Yah wist has a special place: his theology contains 'the richest and most important theological accomplishment expressed anywhere in the pentateuchal narrative'. 2 Op.. at the same time as him. 228. and enters into the realm of the theological. which is the primeval story.. as von Rad would have us believe when he attributes such an epoch-making role to the Yahwist in the traditio-historical process. Noth too at the beginning of the section on the sources of the Pentateuch writes: Tentateuchal narrative has undergone a change with the pentateuchal sources synthesized into the literary whole in which they now lie before us.236. p.. To be sure. but only one of many. however.3 The Yahwist then 'is not the sole author of the most important advances in the process of the development of the Pentateuch. But the Pentateuch did not come into being by looking backwards. It is a question rather of a growth that took place step by step'. the reflective. before him. 40-41.. is clearly the work of the Yahwist. cit.e. cit. and the synthesizing over-view'. Many others.2 Closer examination. When literary criticism unraveled the common basic (G) of J and E.. which gives rise to the shaping of narratives out of the themes. then this was of significance not only for literary criticism. and out of the realm of the popular.. For Noth contests the fundamental statements of von Rad about the way in which the Yahwist composed the work. and after him had a share in it..."the insetting of the Sinai tradition" and "the extension of the patriarchal tradition") derive from G (Grundlage) (namely. but also for the general traditio-historical process.p..1 Thus for Noth too.. But the two others (i.. 3 Op..28 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch primarily as a theologian who gives shape to large passages. shows that Noth's portrait of the Yahwist does not agree in important points with that drawn by von Rad. pp. it has moved out of the realm of the cultic.

12.. Ibid. .4 It finds expression above all in the arrangement of the primeval story and its binding with the subsequent Pentateuch narrative'.. everything depends. 41. Thus the essential connection between the work of composition and the theology on which. cit. ascribes to 'G'. p. one must prescind from the entity G.. which were normative when the material being passed on was given literary formulation. Von Rad's judgment of the Yahwist as a theologian depends on his view of him as a composer of a work. cit.3 then 'the theology of J is all the more clearly before us'. because we can know nothing at all of its wording1. 2 3 4 5 Op. Noth is in broad agreement with von Rad in his explanation of the Yahwistic primeval story and his understanding of Gen.2 And so there can be no theological judgment on the basic composition that Noth. and it is this view that Noth contests. for von Rad.1-3 as a link passage between the primeval story and the patriarchal story. On the contrary: it was just this work of thoroughly shaping the whole of the massive amount of traditional material that renders his hand so recognizable. at any rate..1. p. Ibid. according to the state of things. he kept almost exclusively to the traditional stuff of the pentateuchal narrative without intervening to alter or expand its substance. Subsequently. And it must be underscored yet again that von Rad's judgment depends precisely on the work being a theological one.1 Von Rad's basic view of the Yahwist can in fact scarcely be contested more concretely and clearly. By reducing the contribution of 1 Op. is abolished. almost completely out of consideration'. Op. He was satisfied to have said at the beginning how he wanted the rest to be understood'. cit.236. What is Noth's position here? When discussing the 'question of the basic ideas. in this.. p.5 This is clearly a quite different Yahwist from the one whom von Rad described and who certainly was not satisfied 'to have said at the beginning how he wanted the rest to be understood'. But if E is 'to remain.. 236. The Documentary Hypothesis 29 cretely and clearly to this fact'. 'So the whole weight of the theology of J lies at the beginning of his narrative..

g. But opinions are divided over the 'Elohist'. What remains belongs to the 'Yahwist' inasmuch as there are no convincing reasons against it (e. Noth has pulled away the mat. 228. Noth regards only Gen. However. In general.22ff. 238. yet he described the stage of the pentateuchal sources as the stage of 'the theological. through the larger literary complexes.1 Many others have followed him here. Here again the (unproven) opinion that these passages belong together as a literary unit must bear the burden of proof that. Apart from the primeval story. from the point of view of the traditio-historical approach. by means of literary analysis. Generally. It is worthy of note then that the widespread error of a search for a literary proof of the existence of sources corresponds to the dominance of theological interest in the pentateuchal sources in recent research.2 On the other hand. right up 1 Op. 2 Op. p. cit. one has recourse to the presentation of his theology or in any case to the overriding ideas and compositional standpoints. as a passage of Yahwistic theological work. however imperfectly preserved. it is a matter of the theology of one author. hence his existence is in need of literary demonstration.30 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch the Yahwist to the shaping of the Pentateuch. And so the prevailing view is that which. and the synthesizing overview'. And so a particular branch of literature has developed which is concerned with the theology of the sources of the Pentateuch. 18. it becomes apparent that in many cases the theological ideas and the compositional standpoints are quite different in different parts of the Pentateuch. cit. But scarcely any attempt has been made to demonstrate a literary cohesion between the passages ascribed to the Yahwist.. p. it must be underscored once more that. signs of a deuteronomistic reworking). . its literary content is unraveled by way of negation.. the reflective. This is so particularly for the Tahwist'. one is only justified in accepting continuous 'sources' when this is the result of a study of the history of the traditions of the smallest units. arrives at the existence of an elohistic source. While he held to the view of the Yahwist as a theologian. The general view is that it is easy to delimit the content of the 'priestly* writing. in spite of this.

the acceptance of 'sources' is excluded by reason of an analysis made at the final stage. But it cannot from the very start equate the literary-critical method of working with the results carried over from the source theory. then.1. From a methodological point of view. will have to give answers to the questions raised by literary criticism. and there has scarcely ever been any consideration of their function in the process of the formation of the Pentateuch. the literary-critical statement of the question too must always remain open to results other than those of the traditional source division. of course. The question of the 'larger units' It has already been mentioned that a particular defect in pentateuchal study hitherto is the gaping cleft between the study of the smallest units and concern for the final literary stage. see below. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism. The Documenatary Hypothesis 31 to the final stage of the text. There is a lack of studies of the larger units. as is done so widely today. without its being verified through the study of the formation of the tradition. section 3. formed from a synthesis of originally independent texts before these units were brought together at a later stage in the whole which is the Pentateuch. This procedure identifies a particular method o study almost exclusively with one of its conceivable results. 1 For more detail.2 There is many a reference in the literature to the existence of such larger units. But above all.3 but they have scarcely ever been the object of independent studies. on methodical grounds.2. It goes without saying that the traditio-historical study makes use of the varied insights and results of the literary-critical work so as to unravel the layers and growth of the texts. to be sure. And this all the more so when it is to serve as an assistant to the traditio-historical method. for its part.4. And so it will have to proceed no less 'critically' and also. literary-critically. 3 Cf. have to work with literary-critical tools and. 1. If the question that the traditiohistorical approach is taken seriously. Introductions to the OT by Eissfeldt and Sellin-Fohrer. It will itself. .1 1. 2 See above.

the intent of what follows is twofold: on the one hand. of texts which form-critically and because of their origin are often to be judged very differently. the formation of individual 'cycles of stories'. the gradual collecting of the narratives about the individual patriarchs. forming a new unit. 1. under this point of view. the putting together of the stories about the patriarchs so as to form a larger unit. . and how this relates to the composition of coherent written 'sources' whose existence is generally accepted. and finally. the methodological pre-requisites must first be broadly established and developed.2. and in brief. One can in many cases recognize more or less clearly the means by which the collectors or authors have shaped and brought together into a unity the originally independent and often quite disparate material. It requires very thorough special studies for the individual complexes of tradition/larger units. The larger units that are thus formed distinguish themselves clearly over against others in which the traditions belonging to other cycles of themes have been brought together in like manner. the larger units within the Pentateuch. Hence. on the other hand. The different stages of the process of the formation of the tradition can be clearly discerned in them: the independent individual narratives. The patriarchal stories of Genesis will be chosen as the example. so far as they have been worked out hitherto.1 They are a synthesis. one example of the growth and reworking of such larger units must be studied so as to arrive thereby at criteria for our statement of the question. This makes clear the means used in the course of formation of the individual stories and the comprehensive 1 See above. and before all. The peculiar nature of these larger units has already been outlined in the presentation of von Rad's study. This procedure must be studied in closer detail in order to close the gap in the study of the history of the origin and growth of the Pentateuch. a survey of the material gathered together in the Pentateuch.32 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch there has been a lack of studies of the question of how these texts grew into or were arranged into larger units. must be presented so as to acquire.

It comprises Genesis 1-11.26 (Westermann). Gunkel writes: The passages begin almost always quite abruptly. For the most part they delimit themselves. 7 Op. some reflections are added on the relationship of the larger units so formed to other units.1-3 und die Urgeschichte des Jahwisten'.1-3 is regarded as 'a clamp between the primeval event and the patriarchal story'.1. p. One can put the division between the two after Gen.H. 5 Op. cit. 65. pp. Festschrift. . 'Genesis 12.1-3 (von Rad)1 or after Gen. 6 Genesis 1-11. 4 Genesis.p. The Documentary Hypothesis 33 larger units and the theolological intentions at work in the process of assembling and reworking them.6 But he speaks also of the 'apparently unconnected block(s) in the primeval story which are heaped together*. And finally. G.3 As for the matter of the primeval story in detail. The current stage of exegesis sees a clear link between the primeval story and the patriarchal story at the beginning of the Abraham story. von Rad. p. and the literature is broadly at one in accepting this self-delimitation. Steck.5 Westermann tries to arrange the texts into three narrative groups: 'narratives of creation..64. and of revolts and their consequences'. 12. p.64. 2 Genesis 1-11. there is broad agreement that the passages stand side by side with no intrinsic link between them. cit.4 Following Gunkel. In the table on the same page. 1971..7 All interpreters try likewise to work out the inner connection between these narratives within the framework of the 1 'The Form-critical Problem'. the last group stands under the heading 'Crime and Punishment'. von Rad distinguishes a 'series of cycles of material originally independent'. of achievements.p.2 In both cases Gen. 11. in Probleme biblischer Theologie. which once more lead back to the basic question that this work puts. 566. 12. 2. they are in rough sequence or are in complete contradiction'. 562 3 O. p. 525-54. The primeval story forms the first larger unit. Something must be said first of all about the larger units within the Pentateuch.

cit. is immediately obvious so that very different answers are given. so that despite this disparity in the individual elements. . the two types belong to two fundamentally different styles and lines of tradition'. 1.64. over-arching.4 So then. The patriarchal story (Gen. the whole has the effect of a tightly closed unit.. nevertheless.. Op. Genesis 1-11. 12-50) forms the next larger 1 2 3 4 Genesis.34 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch present composition. they seem to have been put together as if by one who wanted to impose a unified form.1 von Rad sees in the composition 'the directing of the individual pieces of material towards a goal'. reworking can be discerned. and to what extent a common. rather must it be said 'that the style of the narratives in Genesis 1-11 is basically different from that in Genesis 12-50. joined with each other in a much more profound arrangement than appears at first sight. an arrangement which derives from the primeval story as a whole and keeps this whole always in sight'.p. Reference must be made to a further matter which Westermann in particular has stressed: to synthesize the narratives in the primeval story and in the patriarchal story under the general concept of 'Sage' does not do justice to the profound differences in the style of presentation. on the one hand there would be formcritical consequences to be drawn with regard to the determination of the different characteristics of the 'Sage'] while on the other hand the question arises. Ibid. of course. when and at what stage of the formation of the tradition these very different complexes were joined together. Interpreters try now to work out the intention of the composition and the means used to give it its shape..2 and Westermann puts the question whether these apparently unconnected texts are 'somehow.3 Two things become clear from this first of the larger units: the individual pieces and their narrative shape have preserved a great deal of independence with respect to each other. Neither. Gunkel speaks of a 'thread as the last collector will have conceived it'. p.

386. p.388. but after this the contours fade'.5 Pedersen brought a completely new approach to Exodus 1—15 when he considered it as a coherent larger unit. Op. 387-88. Isaac. . Gressmann writes: 'The cycle of stories of Exodus 1. Op. pp. However.1 Various suggestions have been made for the delineation of larger units in the following books of the Pentateuch. synthetic shaping of the narrative materials into larger complexes.. and Joseph stories are the result of the juxtaposition and collection of single narratives. cit. And more—the first three have been further joined together to form a larger unit.. Jacob. cif.1.. ZAW 52 (1934) 161-75.6 He understands the 1 2 3 4 5 6 For further detail. Gressmann tries to establish the largest unit when he writes: The largest cycle of stories which one can discern at first sight extends from the birth of Moses and the sojourn of Israel in Egypt to the death of Moses and the arrival of the people of Israel at the border of the promised land'. p. and on the other a clearly recognizable. cit.21 can be followed clearly. it is only in the patriarchal story that they are found in this form. see below under 2. The dominant intentions and the way in which they have been arranged are clearly evident. it will be dealt with in detail in the second chapter. Mose und seine Zeit. Apart from some smaller cycles of stories within this larger framework. The Documentary Haypothesis 35 unit. Let it be said here by way of summary simply that the same phenomena are evident in it: on the one hand a broad independence of a section of the individual narratives.2 But Gressmann did not himself divide this large narrative complex further.p. The second half of the Moses story portrays as its general theme the departure of Israel from Sinai for the promised land. 387. The stories from the birth of Moses to the arrival of Israel at Sinai3 form a coherent unit up to a point.5.1-15. Each of the patriarchal stories in itself exhibits such a synthesizing reworking: each of the Abraham. this group of stories in the Moses narrative 'splits into two loose halves'. Op.4 Let us turn then to the first part of the Moses story.

growth and formation of larger units presents itself in a radically altered form. confined to the narrative of the plagues of Egypt'. constructed according to a definite plan'. 19. it considers the history of the growth of larger units within the Pentateuch not only from the point of view of narrative. but also from that of the history of cult and liturgy. cit. Mowinckel. 51-52. 51-52. the intentions and the method of arrangement. Noth deals with the traditions of the birth and call of Moses. 66. The Form-critical Problem'.7 On the one side. pp. In particular. he divides the material into a great 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Op. 1-15). Further. 'Die vermeintliche 'Passah- . Despite all unevennesses and secondary additions. he brings chs.6 Fohrer too has analysed the way in which Exodus 1-15 cohere. as they have taken form in Exodus 14. A History.3 Noth also accepts the validity of Pedersen's thesis. Op. cit. cit. pp. See in particular S. including in his approach the criticism by exegetes of Pedersen.5 But in the division of the book of Exodus in his commentary.. 201ff. Von Rad took up Pedersen's 'directive towards the internal coherence of Exodus 1-14 (sic!) and its origin from the feast of the Pasch'. Op. must be judged quite differently than from a purely narrative point of view. pp.. Exodus heading on p.1 And so an entirely new statement of the question arises here. which have been at work in the process of assembling the individual pieces of material. the legend forms a well articulated whole from beginning to end (Exod.. however 'in a somewhat more narrowly drawn framework. It is clear that with such presuppositions the question of the origin. 156ff. 167. 1-15 together again under the heading The leading out from Egypt'. p.2 His interest was less the liturgical element than the fact that these chapters 'present a well-rounded comple of tradition' in which we have before us 'a genuine exodus tradition'. in a quite different place.4 This means in particular that he no longer wants to count the narrative of the destruction of the Egyptians in the sea (Exodus 14) as part of this complex.36 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch whole narrative complex as a cult legend of the feast of the Pasch which lies at the basis of the dramatic arrangement of the feast. p..

it is very obvious that interest in the large narrtive complexes is closely bound up with the concept of the existence of continuous narrative sources which embrace the whole of the pentateuchal material.1 He rejects 'the fiction of a deep cleft that has made it possible to accept an isolated exodus tradition'.. That larger whole was the occupation of the land by Moses' host which comprised the tradition of how the exodus came about. 2 Op. Eine Analyse von Ex 115. the firm alliance with Yahweh on Sinai. STL 5 (1952) 66-88.6.3 Von Rad has laid special emphasis on the independence of the Sinai passage. Exodus 1-15 is directed to a continuation of and forms a part of a more comprehensive historical narrative.e. he brings into legende'. Within the framework of our statement of the question. he comes to the conclusion 'that the exodus tradition is not a selfcontained complex and that the exodus itself is not an isolated event to be evaluated separately and by itself. .1964. The Documentary Hypothesis 37 37 number of smaller narrative 'elements'. 3 See below under 2. 1 Uberlieferung und Geschichte des Exodus. and finally. (the exodus is 'not an isolated event to be evaluated separately and by itself). p. Following Mowinckel. this would require an entirely new approach. On the contrary. already mentioned. the further wandering right up to the entrance into the territory of east Jordan. and continues: In reality. i. Besides the difference. historical questions too come under consideration which once more are involved with the traditio-historical question of whether the exodus tradition existed and was passed on in isolation. there has so far been scarcely any attempt to look for clues to the conscious shaping of larger units within Exodus 1—15—as is the case too in other parts of the book of Exodus. and originally too the settlement in east Jordan'.1. the exodus. in particular of Exodus 19-24. 'Ex 1-15 in Bezug auf die Frage: Literarkritik und Traditionskritik'.2 It is obvious that very different methods and statements of the question clash in this discussion of Exodus 1-15. 122. then the death of the charismatic leader Moses. 121. between a predominantly narrative approach and a cultic approach. he regards it as a 'cult legend'.. but on the other.. cit.?.

2 It lies before us in a form that reflects a wild growth.1-20. 3 There are differences in the delimitation of the ending of this complex of tradition.3 Gressmann accepted as a basis for all these narratives a collection of stories connected with the sanctuary at Kadesh. V. 156-238. A further problem in the Sinai synthesis is the fact that it is preceded and followed by narratives about Israel's sojourn in the desert (Exod. esp. and legal material which has been thrown together. p. in particular different codes of law. separated out certain blocks of material. This opinion has been frequently criticised. 11. liturgical function of this collection. 16-18. this question has still not really been put. Exodus 19 through to Numbers 10 contains an assortment of narrative. 'Preparation for and beginning of the "conquest"' (Numbers. 11-20). cultic. pp. chs. and so in his commentary on Numbers he makes the division: Num. Herkunft und Geschichte der altesten Sinaitraditionen. According to him they 1 Cf. 206). 20 and 21. 'further sojourn in the wilderness'. This is in line with his thesis that the Sinai tradition was first passed on separately from the traditions of the exodus and the occupation of the land. Num. 148). A. Introduction to the Old Testament. The relatively self-contained independence of the Sinai pericope has scarcely been contested. .14-21 the transition to the theme 'leading into the land' (A History. But as to how all this came together into a whole. But it is just this discussion that has stood in the way of further study of the formation and structure of the Sinai pericope. Beyerlin. Bundestheologie im Alien Testament. Weiser.1 The criticism is concerned primarily with the question—do the different complexes of tradition just mentioned belong together or not. Hence. Scholarship has. there have been scarcely any studies of the question of how the extremely different elements within the Sinai pericope came together. Noth sees in Num. and Num. Traditionsgeschichtliche Untersuchung der Wiistenuberlieferung des Jahwisten.13. 1970.38 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch relief once more the cultic.14-36. 2 Further pointers in this direction may be found in L. 1969. and was joined with them only at a relatively later stage. as it is so obvious. 20. to be sure. nor can it be. 20. 81. and whether there were any guiding principles of arrangement or discernable intent at work in the process. pp. Fritz represents an opposite view: Israel in der Wiiste.13. W. Perlitt.

p. Cf. . in our statement of the question: was there one (or several) larger unit(s) with the theme 'Israel in the desert' whose growth from individual narratives or suchlike smaller units can be outlined.2 while others have accepted and elaborated it. came to the conclusion 'the literary-critical theses.1 This question is in turn linked with historical. who gathered together older traditions which had already been partly joined together and shaped them into a 'very old whole unit'. and traditio-historical questions. The Documentary Hypothesis 39 were only separated from each other by the inset Sinai passages in the course of the traditio-historical development. The reason for this is that it is not possible to arrive at internally coherent complexes for each of the accepted continuous narrative threads'.6 This means nothing else than that Noth here regarded the occupation of the land traditions in Joshua as an independent larger unit. Noth has contested this thesis very strongly. op. the question of how the narratives came together in their present arrangement has remained undiscussed. demonstrated above all for Genesis. 12. cit. especially with the question of whether Kadesh was ever a cultic centre for some or for all the Israelite tribes.3 But in all this. 164-65. And so one spoke of the 'Hexateuch'. The reason for this was that the texts in Joshua were regarded as belonging to the pentateuchal 'sources'.. That is.1. Fritz. Op.. p. It is surely not due to chance that this occurred in 1 2 3 4 5 6 Gressmann. Noth.. Beyerlin. 1953 (2nd edn). cit. he discerned a 'collector' at work. At the beginning of this century Old Testament scholarship in general accepted that the traditions of the occupation of the land in the book of Joshua were an immediate continuation of the pentateuchal presentation. op. pp. 165ff. p. cit. Das Buck Josua. pp. in his analysis of the book of Joshua. of particular interest is the discussion of the traditions about the Israelites' occupation of the land. Mose und seine Zeit. 386-87. pp. religio-historical. A History. 25. are not valid for the book of Joshua in the same enlightening way. 8.4 Finally.5 Instead of continuous 'sources' in the narrative parts of Joshua.

16. and hence any talk of the *Hexateuch'. and has been accepted by various scholars. It seemed certain to him that the old pentateuchal sources originally ended up with a narrative of the occupation of the land. Noth's thesis has subsequently undergone lively discussion. p. 1 A History. One of the main reasons for this surmise is the 'repeated promises right throughout the patriarchal story that the descendants are ultimately to possess the land of Palestine'. Noth then drew the consequences of this: he separated the book of Joshua once more from the Pentateuch and abandoned the thesis of 'sources' extending beyond the Pentateuch. texts. and Moses'. or will not. this raised a new difficulty for Noth. namely to submit the source theory itself to critical examination. Aaron. . but not extant. there is the fact that the book of Numbers begins with the account of the occupation of east Jordan which. draw the consequence of this. Noth thinks that this original description of the occupation of the land in the older pentateuchal sources has Tbeen lost'. And so he makes use of a redactor who has simply left out' the postulated. 'its description would have ended with the reports of the death of Miriam. hence. However. the reason being that the priestly writing is not interested in the theme of the occupation of the land. On the one hand Noth. again without the consequences for the source theory as a whole being drawn. he cannot.40 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch work on a commentary on a single book of the Old Testament which required that one come to grips more accurately with the problems of this larger unit without looking at them in the framework of the usual problems of pentateuchal (hexateuchal) study. in Noth's opinion. on the basis of his analysis of the book of Joshua. cannot maintain the thesis of continuous sources which end up with the description of the occupation of the land. on the other.1 Further. requires a continuation in the account of the occupation of west Jordan. the redactor would then have 'tailored the narrative of the old sources to the literary framework of the P narrative and so have simply left out the end of that narrative extending beyond the death of Moses'.2 One can only say that this is an extremely precarious way of arguing. 2 Ibid.

Research so far has acknowledged the independent character of most of these units. in essence. It is striking that scarcely a single thorough comparison has been carried out of the method of working of the supposed authors of the 'sources' in different larger units And so there has been no convincing demonstration so far that the recognizable reworking of the traditions in the different parts of the Pentateuch goes back in fact to the same redactor or author. From the traditio-historical point of view the question. Hence. The question whether it belongs to a broader context is to be put only at a later stage. These works. namely the pentateuchal 'sources'. Each of these units has its own characteristic profile. whether the narratives about the occupation of the land in east Jordan can be understood only as the beginning of a more comprehensive and total description of the occupation of land. Moses and exodus. for our context. there .1. the question of the independence is not dealt with. there is no ground for regarding this larger unit as. occupation of the land. or whether the occupation traditions in the book of Numbers can be considered as an indeendent larger unit which has had its own history of tradition. to what pentateuchal 'source' does it belong. together with other 'theological' reworkings. As a consequence. The survey of the Pentateuch according to recognizable larger units with a common theme has shown that virtually the whole pentateuchal material is divided into such larger units: the primeval story. however. and the qualities characteristic of the carefully planned arrangement are for the most part very quickly—or even a priori—traced back to the authors of the 'sources'. try consistently to show that the present unity is a constituent part of a larger context. to someone called the *Yahwist'. plays no role. Sinai. a large unit consisting of traditions about the occupation of the land has been clearly discerned in the book of Joshua. But for the Pentateuch itself there would be the further question. sojourn in the desert. the patriarchal story. One is often content to designate a reworking as 'theological' so as to ascribe it. anything else than an independent complex of tradition within the Pentateuch. The Documentary Hypothesis 41 41 It must be stated that. each is assembled from various elements of tradition and presents itself now as a more or less self-contained unit. and there are already many individual studies.

It is only in a next step in the comparison that the question of the larger complexes can be put.42 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch must be a new approach: there must be a thorough study of the arrangement and the reworking of the individual larger units in which each must be considered in itself without any previous decision whether it belongs to a larger complex or to one or other 'sources'. .

Its special character within the patriarchal story 1 Genesis. First of all he writes: The Joseph story is a cycle of stories (Sagenkranz)'. he describes it as 'a well arranged whole'. he shows himself remarkably uncertain in his choice of form-critical terminology. 396. it marks itself off. rather 'the boundaries between the passages are very fluid'. It is clear that here..1 After describing the characteristics of the style and the manner of presentation in further detail. he says finally: 'After all this. p. 2 Op. Jacob. Nevertheless. The special place of the Joseph story (Gen. hence. we can scarcely call this narrative a story (Sage). but also for literary arrangements.Chapter 2 THE PATRIARCHAL STORIES AS EXAMPLES OF A 'LARGER UNIT' WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE PENTATEUCH 2. from the other cycles of stories by its very tight structure'. cit. Gunkel has already described appositely its peculiar character. However. not only to describe a collection of originally independent stories.. the constituent parts of which are not appropriately designated as stories (Sagen). It is scarcely possible to separate the individual stories from each other..1 The stories of Joseph.p. . Gunkel uses the notion 'cycle of stories' in a very undefined sense. and Isaac Within the patriarchal story several independent narrative complexes delineate themselves clearly. as in other places.2 Consequently. The notion 'Novelle' has prevailed by and large for the Joseph story. 37-50) stands out most clearly of all.397. one must go further and say: the Joseph story is not a cycle of stories. he continues: 'However. we must call it a Novelle'.

is dependent on many a stimulus of Egyptian origin'.. 2 Gunkel.9.17 onwards under the heading 'Jacob in Canaan'.. however. 29—31). 1966 (German 1953). cit. deals with the passages from 33. Penuel. 4 Op. 3 Op. 292. 32-3G2) and the Jacob-Laban stories (Gen. 291. and especially the conclusion which reverts to the beginning. and Shechem which *have been distributed along the trail of Jacob's travels'.6 Von Rad has taken Gunkel's observations further at this point by showing that the two cultic stories of Bethel (Gen.. cit. He specifies the arrangement that has thus arisen in the following way: This Jacob—Esau-Laban cycle is. Mahanaim. Von Rad has added a further dimension with his thesis: 'the Joseph story is a didactic wisdom narrative which.1 This classification among the traditions influenced by Egyptian wisdom sets it apart even further from the rest of the tradition in the patriarchal story. 292. Gunkel has also made the most important observations on the Jacob story.23-33 [22-32]) in particular play an important role in the overall arrangement. both in the ideal that it presents and in its basic theological thinking. Both have been skilfully joined together: 'a 'frame' has been fashioned out of the Jacob—Esau stories into which the Jacob-Laban stories have been inserted'. 28. pp.3 Besides these two larger complexes of narratives Gunkel names as a further independent element the 'stories about the places of cult which Jacob founded'4 (besides the 'accounts of the birth and the later fate of Jacob's children'5 which he maintains are not constituent parts of the old arrangements of the stories).10-22) and Penuel (Gen. He has shown that it consists in essence of two large narrative complexes: the Jacob-Esau stories (Gen. p.. 32. It is a question here of the cult stories of Bethel. 368. 25. p. 6 Op. in The Problem of the Hexateuch and Other Essays. . 5 Ibid. accordingly. 27.1-28. They stand at the two turning points of Jacob's journey: 1 The Joseph Narrative and Ancient Wisdom'. p. but an artistic arrangement: a sequence of cross references forwards and backwards. cit. p. binds the whole together into a unit'. not a loose juxtaposition from the hand of a redactor.19-34. 292-300..44 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch has been generally acknowledged.

. 57. 5 'The Form-critical Problem'. p. The literature for the most part does not evaluate this chapter as an independent section. 87.4 Von Rad writes: 'There are only two stories about Isaac (Gen. The Patriarchal Stories 45 the flight from Esau and the retreat from Laban. 39. Gunkel puts it under the heading 'Survey of the arrangement of the JE Jacob stories'.2 He says of this group that 'in the way in which they are arranged they stand somewhere between the type of short. 6 Op. 4 Op. p.. in Forschung am Alien Testament.. p.3 There is an independent Isaac story in Genesis 26. 'inserted. A History. cit. 291. he writes: These Isaac traditions have passed into the literture basically in their ancient form and without any adjustment to the later and broad arrangement of the patriarchal stories'. 1964. These two narrative blocks are clearly markers indicating the guiding theological thinking*. 9-91.2. 98ff..6 Gunkel too felt that the Isaac story had its own character over against the other patriarchal stories.7 1 Genesis. cit. 1972. cit. however. 7 Op. by a later hand'.1 Westermann too has arrived at essentially the same division and designation of the constituent parts of the Jacob narrative. it is different. 12-33) which have been incorporated into the broad arrangement of the Jacob stories'.. . Looking at the entire block of the Jacob-EsauLaban cycle of stories. but looks at it within the frame of the Jacob story. on the other. p. and so surmised that the chapter liad been taken from another related book of stories and inserted here'..6-11. he speaks of a 'group of coherent narratives dominating the whole which can be called one large narrative'. self-contained Abraham narratives and the Joseph narrative which forms a much larger and more complex unit'.5 In his Genesis commentary. 2 'Arten der Erzahlung in der Genesis'. 26. 3 Ibid. 270.. The Jacob story then is supported by these two narratives 'as a bridge is supported by two pylons. also Noth. p. On the one hand it is fitted more firmly into the 'units of tradition'. esp. it is in brackets with the additional note. pp. pp.

5 A History. 2 Gunkel. the second by w. He describes the chapter as a 'string of units of tradition that are in part only sketchy and in themselves not tightly knit'.7 Verses 1 Franz Delitzsch. 21. 103ff.46 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch The independence of Genesis 26 with respect to the context is well underscored. p.4 We must pursue this question somewhat more closely. p. The chapter is described as a 'mosaic'. Uberlieferungsgeschichtliche Untersuchung der expliziten Querverbindungen innerhalb des vorpriestlichen Pentateuchs. 1887. 360. 1 and 6.. in my opinion. J) *has assembled here. The remaining parts of the chapter are of a very different type. one of the crucial problems for the understanding and evaluation of the Isaac stories is that they are to some extent not amplified as narratives in the usual way. comes finally to the conclusion that 'Genesis 26 presents a narrative cluster that can be described as "the Isaac cluster"'. Die Querverweise im Pentateuch. the first divine address is linked to the context by w. pp. . 4 R. on the basis of his study of the cross references within the chapter. p. Genesis. Kessler.1-18. Heidelberg. 23 and 25. 3 Von Rad.. Noth stated that the author (for him. 7 However. 2-4. proposed convincing reasons arguing that each of the Isaac variants are. Diss.2 'On the other hand one can recognize clearly the attempt to weld subsequently the small units of tradition into some sort of self-contained coherent whole'. Neuer Commentar fiber die Genesis.108. older.22-32).1 a passage which 'has not become a completely self-contained composition'. 6 Op. Two divine addresses stand out which have no immediate connection with the narrative context (w. 104. Genesis. cit. Noth has. as it were in a compendium and with the help of a continuous narrative thread. 26-31).5 In fact. 24).10-20 and 20. theol. 29. from the traditio-historical standpoint. p.3 Kessler. 300.6 Both are linked as narrative by the cross reference in v. Both have their parallels in the Abraham story (Gen. Genesis 26 contains only two detailed narratives: 'the betrayal of the ancestress' (w. 7-11) and the making of the treaty with Abimelech of Gerar (w. 12. 1972. all that the narrative tradition known to him about Isaac was aware of.

and about the consequent envy of the Philistines. in a rather infantile manner. They lack only the usual narrative shaping. But why should these verses come from a 'later hand'? They give certain pieces of information and are quite comprehensible in themselves. 21. the 'insertion betrays itself *by referring back to an earlier story'. 21. 3 Die Composition des Hexateuchs und der historischen Bttcher des Alten Testaments. not developed in narrative form. Wellhausen admits that new statements are being made here which are not taken from other narratives. v. and that Isaac had dug them again and given them their old names. which is described as a result of God's blessing. The Patriarchal Stories 47 12-14 provide some very general information about Isaac's wealth. Abimelech's men took the wells by force. 27. According to Gunkel.1 (Verse 28 refers back expressly to this. p. and it is a question only of passages that have not been elaborated in narrative fashion. They have the very obvious function of giving the prerequisites for the subsequent narratives about the disputes over the wells. Rather in the place to which reference is made (Gen.3 Wellhausen was consistent in this: 'After all.2 But no story about the Philistines blocking up the wells dug by Abraham exists. in other 1 Westermann. 1899 (3rd edn).25). wants to put Abraham's wells out of action by blocking them up so that Isaac can dig them again'. 18 is a harmonizing insertion referring back to 21. Since Wellhausen it has been common to attribute these verses to a redactor (Gunkel. namely that in this version they wanted to use the wells themselves. Hence.) Verses 16-17 report quite undramatically Isaac's 'expulsion' from the Gerar territory. p. and there is a reference back to this in v. It is easy to discern here the concern to form a unified whole. How are they to be evaluated? Verses 15 and 18 report that the Philistines had blocked up the wells that Abraham had dug earlier. The remainder has to do entirely with wells. RJ) or to a later hand (von Rad). Perhaps we can go further if we point to similar short communications. 'Die Arten'.22ff which.2. It is amazing how woolly the arguments for this are. . 2 Genesis. 302. which actually amounts to something different.

32-33). faced with these short communictions.48 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch places in the Old Testament. They have been fitted into the framework of the other Isaac traditions in such a way that the synthesis. There is no reason for considering the tradition in w. he wanted to take into his work. despite the variety of the material. it is form-critically misguided to say that 'an etymological story has been spun' out of the names of the wells. the collector or author was aware of certain traditions about wells in the northern Negev which were linked with the figure of Isaac (and Abraham). 1971. 432ff. This would mean that. von Rad. 2 Gunkel. 15 and 18 very differently. but which had not been passed on in the form of developed narratives: traditions about the digging a second time and re-naming by Isaac of Abraham's old wells (w. 19-20) and Sitnah (v. in Probleme biblischer Theologie. 21). there are a number of brief passages with self-contained pieces of information which have not been developed into narratives.1 One must conceive of these as the work of a collector or author of a particular group of texts who. pp. for example. but which. R.2 What typifies these short communications is precisely that they have not been turned into story. 2. 16—2 Sam. and so by means of short communications he was able to pass on the relevant information.18). . pp. gives the impression of a relatively self-contained piece. side by side with developed narratives. made use as well of information which had not been formed into narrative. 5). Genesis. p.2 The story of Abraham The interpreter of the Abraham traditions is faced with a 1 Cf. for the Isaac story.22). Further. 'Beobachtungen zur altisraelitischen Geschichtsschreibung anhand der Geschichte vom Aufstieg Davids'. 15. In the story of David's rise (1 Sam. 428-39. Rendtorff. Festschrift G. nevertheless. and the undisputed use of the well Rehoboth (v. with the naming of each well on each occasion. about the dispute over the newly dug wells at Esek (w. and finally about the naming of the newly dug well at Beersheba in association with the treaty between Isaac and Abimelech (w.25b. esp.302.

Gunkel has already spoken of an Abraham-Lot cycle to which he reckons the following texts: Gen. in its present form it must be considered late. there are many independent units of tradition in the Abraham stories which have no explicit relationship to their context. The Patriarchal Stories 49 unique situation. On the one hand. There is scarcely any other area in the Pentateuch where the individual narratives stand out as such self-contained and independent literary units.1-28. This notion is clearly not applicable to the passage Gen. what are the characteristics of this larger unit. summing it up. 18.1 The variety of layers in the process of transmission of the Abraham tradition A first step towards answering this question is that closer attention is being given to the connections between individual smaller units already featured in the literature. p. 12. individual stories (Sagen} which had been woven into a certain unity. 19.3038j1 but he has seen also that the expression 'cycle' is not entirely appropriate here. is the case in the Jacob-Esau and the Jacob-Laban stories. 13. The traditio-historical question then may be formulated thus: Is it in fact a question here of a larger unit so conceived according to a definite plan? If so.2 The term story (Sage) however. He developed this 'information' into a sort of story (Geschichte) which he has set 1 Genesis. as Gunkel himself has explained.On the other hand. still recognizable as such today.2. 159. writes: The narrative has little concrete about it and can scarcely be called a 'story' (Geschichte)'.1-8. 2 As. of which Gunkel. The writer had before him only the 'information' that Abraham had come from Aram-Naharaim and that he founded the altars at Shechem and Bethel. the reader gets the impression of an internal coherence which runs through the whole Abraham tradition and makes it appear to be a relatively self-contained unit. is appropriate only for a part of the texts mentioned.1-16aa.1-8.2. 19. for example. . 12. He describes it in the form-critical context as a collection of originally independent. into a larger unit? 2. and what are the means used to arrange these originally independent smaller units.

30-38). A further group of narratives that belong together is readily discernible in Genesis 20-22. and consequently the one blessed'. and especially by the geographical references in 18.3 the intention of which is quite clear.1-7. Hence we are to regard Abraham as the believer. 19 the title 'Narrative groups'. 3 Kessler. These for their part have been joined together by means of the intermediary passage 18. 21. 18. 69ff.1-28) only after these had been brought together to balance each other. p.1-8 in the collection when he described it as the 'signature tune' (Motto) of the Abraham stories as a whole.. 22. so as to form a larger unit with Genesis 13 (and 19. Kessler has described them as the 'Negev group' because their common scene of action is in the Negev. Gunkel himself limited the function of 12. Gunkel considers that we are dealing here with something belonging to the collection and the reworking. pp.27-28. not with an original story (Sage) or narrative. 8-21. But this broader context which Gunkel established covers only a small part of the Abraham tradition.2 Hence Genesis 13 would have been placed before the two narratives of Mamre (18.1-16) and Sodom (19.50 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch as it were as a 'signature-tune' (Motto) at the beginning of the Abraham stories. and so one must consider it a later and new formation. Gunkel maintains that the same holds for Genesis 13. a shoot grafted on to an older branch'. This narrative is not constructed for itself but is rather a preparation for the two narratives about Abraham and Lot at Mamre and Sodom.. p. This narrative differs qualitatively from old stories inasmuch as it is not constructed for itself but rather presupposes the Sodom story in such a way as to be quite incomprehensible without it.16. as are the means used to arrange and bind together the individual elements. 13. 167. 176. 2 Genesis. Of particular importance here is Kessler's demonstration that the four 'scenes' (Gen. What Gunkel has to say about these 'pieces of information' is very close to what we have just said about some passages in the Isaac tradition.1 Accordingly. 22-34) are joined together 1 Genesis. . op.. 20.17-33. 19. he gives chs. cit. the obedient one.

1. 12. But this procedure is without parallel within the patriarchal story. presuppose the whole context of the Abra1 Kessler.2 And so we are dealing here with a collection of narratives which are joined together by their common scene of action as well as by cross references (with the exception of Genesis 223). the passage about the treaty between Abraham and Abimelech at Beersheba in 21.1 The note about Isaac's growing up in 21.9. 16. It has.10-20 is self-contained and has no explicit references to the rest of the Abraham traditions. pp. 59. however.5 17. 590. A History. . p.1 (Then Abraham set out from there') joining it with the preceding narrative(s). and Genesis. 253.. 17. On the other hand.1.1. ad loc. 15. 4 Gen.1.. 7 And so there are no grounds whatever for any claim that this 'resumption' belongs to the Yahwist: this is against Noth. the narrative in 12.. 24. the birth of Ishmael is presupposed.6 23. 6. been joined to the context in 12. 21.10. 22-23) without a knowledge of Genesis 20'. 11. pp.1-2.1. 611. Further. 20. 221f.2. 87. so that it cannot be taken in itself to be a typical sign of a particular layer of reworking. 3-4 in a remarkably elaborate way by 'resuming7 geographical details. compare too 18. however. however. likewise self-contained which. 23. 5 The mention of Sarah's barrenness in Gen. op. n. cf.8 refers back to the preceding passage which tells of Isaac's birth. 13. apart from the fact that the actors in them are the same. This is the case with Genesis 14. This is all the more striking as the large majority of Abraham narratives begin with introductory formulas which contain no explicit reference at all to the context. Kessler. op. p.22-34 'is unintelligible in its beginning (w. for a link with the context: 13. The Patriarchal Stories 51 by cross-references. von Rad. "The Form-critical Problem'. 80-87. cit.7 There are some further narratives. 22..1.1. Ill. cit. 6 Here. cit.1.1. nn. 22. 22 to the 'Negev-group'. These two collections have themselves been obviously joined together at a particular stage of the reworking as is clear from the explicit link at the beginning of 20. 2 Op.1. 14.4 Quite distinct from these collections or groups of narratives stand a number of other narratives which show no sign of any connection with the context. 8. 3 For the relationship of Gen. p. 16.30 cannot be alleged against this. 92. cf.1.

Finally. then the answer must without doubt be: the divine promises to Abraham.. reveals that the element of promise appears in a bewildering variety of forms. the general theme of the Abraham tradition: the problem of no son and the promise of numerous descendants joined to the birth of a son (w. Kessler. It belongs. despite this. come together. both in content and formulation. L. see above under 1. however. Both parts of the chapter (w. cit. This is true in particular of Genesis 24. 7-21). And so it is obvious that it has only been formulated at that stage of the process of formation of the tradition when its different elements had. On the other hand. what is the overarching element which. If one asks. from the literary standpoint.2 The promises in the divine addresses in the Abraham story The Abraham traditions present. to that stage of the reworking which was bringing the Abraham tradition together. it has already been noted that the passage 12. and each in a different way. the narrative about the winning of a bride for Isaac. op.52 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch ham traditions to such an extent that they can scarcely have existed without it. The situation is much more difficult in Genesis 15. It presents a unique. but over against which it exhibits clear tensions. so 1 Cf. 2 Cf. .4. it cannot have been formulated with a view to the present context. 1-6). the chapter stands in the middle of a context with which it not only has no link. again in contrast to the two chapters already mentioned.1-8 has been arranged with a view to the overall complex of the Abraham tradition in its present form. Periltt. 92ff. 7-21) presuppose as a whole. pp.1 It presupposes the whole life-story of Abraham. 1-6. of which we have spoken above. a picture that is very uneven and many-layered.2 In contrast to Genesis 24. for the most part. 2. allows the impression of a self-contained unity to emerge. independent exposition of the basic themes of the Abraham tradition. therefore.2. therefore. Closer examination. as well as the departure from the original homeland (Ur-Kasdim) and the promise of the possession of the land (w.

21ff.2 His statement of the question must be taken up and developed here. Rather. Westermann however surmises that the narrative does not lie before us in its original form. 3 Op.. 11-34. in all other cases the element of the promise does not belong to the oldest constituent part of the narrative. It is notable that both narratives contain as well elements of a place etiology.. The Patriarchal Stories 53 that at first glance it seems impossible to arrive at criteria for the collection and arrangement of the Abraham traditions.1. pp. p.1 Nevertheless.5 Finally.7 Investigation must 1 Cf. Westermannn first of all raised the question of how the theme of the promise stands in relationship to the individual narratives in the patriarchal traditions. 33. cit. p. He came to the conclusion that only very few of the individual narratives can be described as 'promise narratives'. the promise of the son is closely joined to the promise of numerous descendants. see above under 2..1-6.7-21. 5 Op.4 In 15. Westermann. 29. and there is no way in which it can be detached.6 According to Westermann's analysis.. we must undertake the task because it is possible that this may give access to the problems of the composition of the Abraham traditions. pp. 33. . The structure of the whole passage is multi-layered and. 4 Op. 19. It is similar in the case of Genesis 16 where the promise of the birth of Ishmael to Hagar likewise belongs to the essence of the narrative. cit.2. cit. very difficult to penetrate. 6 Op. 2 Op. cit. in 15. The promise of a son is the central narrative element here. p..3 Genesis 18 is a very obvious example of a promise narrative. from the traditio-historical standpoint. 7 Op. Westermann has made an important step in this direction. He has dealt with the theme of the promises to the fathers above all in his work The Types of Narrative in Genesis'. p. The promise motif belongs predominantly to that stage when the old narratives were brought together to form larger units'.. cit. the promise of the possession of the land is an essential part of the narrative. cit.

. The promises occur almost exclusively in divine addresses or in citations from them. 19. the event in Genesis 16 runs its course without 1 It is possible that the announcement of the birth of a son was already part of the pre-Israelite sanctuary legend. the promise element is in the foreground.3.12.4. 14. 23. 2). as there is in 21. This is the case particularly when the divinity itself is present. in a second group of narratives. the divine address is a direct. cf. 24. 3 On the element of guidance in the promise addresses. 21. but which contains no explicit promise (v. However.54 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch carry on from here.22. Rather.30-38.22-34. 2 Despite Gen. which Abraham carries out. On the other hand. Gunkel. The first result of this is negative: however significant the role of the divine address is in many places.3 There is a command from YHWH to Abraham in Gen.9 to do a particular thing. On the other hand.This means then that neither in the original formulation nor in the later reworking is the divine address used as a regular means of arranging the narrative. constituent part of the narrative. further inquiry commends itself so as to broaden the investigation and to inquire about the function of the divine addresses in the Abraham stories. as in Genesis 18 and 19. And the formula. and speaks directly to people. already referred to. the divine address forms a constituent element. for the complicated situation. below under 2. there must first be a series of preliminary studies before this 'stage when the old narratives were brought together to form larger units' can be clearly set in focus. In Genesis 18. Hence. In these cases. Genesis. remains opaque.10-20.2 But the divine address can also be used as an integral part of the narrative in such a way as to initiate a particular event. it is by no means present in all the Abraham narratives. there is a striking number of narratives in which there is no divine address at all: 12. There is a divine command at the beginning of Genesis 22. even though unrecognized at first. cf. does not allow an immediate analysis of the text. 15. 17. Then YHWH appeared'. p.1 In the remaining cases YHWH only speaks without intervening in the action. 200.

22.1-6 too. nor does the Joseph story. But it has no influence on Abraham's conduct. The same is true for Genesis 20 where the address is directed to Abimelech only.15-18. that when the divine address dominates the context or stands independently over against the context. therefore. . There are some cases where the divine address is so dominant that one can hardly speak of a narrative. This is the case particularly in Genesis 17 where there is but the barest narrative frame (apart from the execution of the command in w. the promise address carries its own weight in the context. 23-27).3 The promises to the patriarchs And so we return once more to the promise addresses in the narrower sense. We have mentioned already the difficulties to which this inquiry gives rise. In 15. Each is pure promise address. in contrast. Finally. the divine address is predominantly promise. the divine address occurs as an independent and clearly denned piece in 13.13-16. 24 is an expressly 'pious' narrative!—and on the other.14-17. in each case added to or inserted into the context. joined here with covenant obligation. Likewise in 12. only at a later stage is a promise addressed to Hagar. On the one hand.1 2. This is a clear indication that the promise emerges into sharper relief particularly in the later stages of the history of tradition. though does not at all have to be joined always to the promise element. the action recedes completely behind the promise address. The Patriarchal Stories 55 any divine address to Abraham. 15. There is therefore a basic difference between the development of the narrative on the one hand. a great number of different promise themes occur in the promise addresses 1 It is of interest. the development of the increasing use of the divine promise address as an element of reworking. These examples show that the divine address can be employed in different ways as a narrative device. 24 contains no direct divine address. It is clear. that the late narrative form in Gen.1-3. it becomes more and more exclusively a promise address.2. where the direct divine address yields more and more in favour of an indirect divine action—Gen. which is an example of a very advanced stage of narrative art.

p. In the Jacob story. cit. he writes: 'At the end...1 but they are completely absent from the Joseph story. the practice is somewhat more varied: the divine address occurs in the poetic passage which has been taken up in 25.2 But the synthesis of his results leaves the question open.23. 2 'Arten'. it seems that each promise element can be joined to any other in any sequence whatever. we are left with the cumulative combination of a great deal of promise material.27-30.56 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch which can be formulated in a variety of ways and whose relationship to each other is difficult to determine.3-4. also the synthesis on p. again when referring to the divine address in 31.13-15 (cross reference in 35. 3 Op. And Westermann has not really succeeded in progressing beyond this situation. to be sure: This late stage however is evident too in J. Hence. especially in P and the later expansions of the old narratives'. Though promise addresses are incomparably more frequent in the Abraham story.3 This 'combination of a great deal of promise material' presents the most difficult problem in the analysis of the promise addresses and in their development in the process of tradition. further. 33. 32. .1) and 32. it is very necessary to extend the study across the patriarchal stories as a whole.9-12 and 46. Setting side by side the various possibilities in which the promise elements can appear. 4 Op. p. in the independent promise addresses in 35.3 (more of this later) and 31. 31. and 1 In the Isaac story. cit.2-5. On the other hand. Westermann has studied both the individual promise elements and the links between them and has gained important insights. He writes: 'the combination or addition of a great deal of promise material can be considered with complete certainty as a late stage'. divine addresses occur only in two independent promise addresses without any immediate connection with the context (26. in passages like 28. 11-34. cf.2-4 and in the account of a promise address in 48. pp. 24). these individual promise addresses are inter-twined with each other in very different ways without there being at first glance any definite principle. in undoubtedly older narrative passages in 28. 32.13-15. finally.24. they occur nevertheless in the Isaac and Jacob stories in the same or similar form.4 He adds.1113. then in narrative context.

8 28.12 26.2. without thereby making any pronouncement about its absolute age. In so doing. And so we must try to make it more perspicuous by a careful analysis of the individual promise elements. texts which are not in direct divine addresses are placed in round brackets.3 15. we will first deal with each of them separately and compare them with the other texts that contain the same promise material. In accordance with the methodological principle already mentioned.15 35. a stage which in the process of tradition is to be subordinated to the appearance of individual promise elements. to which the following table should help. 2 Ibid.4) 1 Ibid. that is.7 13. Hence. . 3 In this and the following tables.13 13. We will try to throw light on the history of the traditions of these formulations.1 The promise of the land We begin with the promise of the land which occurs in a variety of formulations. one cannot avoid extending the analysis across a relatively wide area. That means that where we find different promise elements joined together.3 17.3. 22'. and inquire about their individual elements and the particular history of each in the course of tradition'. The situation is obviously very complicated.2 It is this task that we now undertake. The Patriarchal Stories 57 in E. the principle established by Westermann is of particular importance: 'One must go behind the late combinations which contain a number of promises. * It is obviously a question of a relatively late stage. in the addition in ch. we will begin with an analysis of the individual elements and so postpone for the time the question of their joining or combination. 2.17 28.

) The table tries to trace a definite line of development in the formalized phrases within the promises of the land.4 (48.8 (28.4 to give to you this land as a possession because to you will I give it to you will I give it and to your descendants to you will I give it and to your descendants for ever the land which I gave to Abraham and to Isaac. will I give the land because to you and to your descendants will I give all these lands I will give to you and to your descendants after you the land of your sojournings may he give to you the blessing of Abraham.12). the formulation in 15. to you and to your descendants with you. that you may possess the land of your sojournings. (2) the word 'descendants' renders the singular Hebrew word zera'.7 (24.17 28. in a number of other cases which occur in addresses to all three patriarchs. lit. 'seed'.58 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 12.13.7 24.7. in one case the verb has been repeated again in such a way that it is very clear that the phrase is composite (35.18 26.7 is clearly outside the pattern). .4 48.7) 15.7 15.4) 15.7 13.18 26. In some cases God's address to Abraham runs: 'to you will I give it (the land)' (13.3 17. which God gave to Abraham) to your descendants will I give this land to your descendants will I give this land) to your descendants I give this land I will give to your descendants all these lands I will give to your descendants after you this land as an everlasting inheritance to possess) 12. 13. That it is a question of an addition here will be readily discernible from the fact that in some cases 'and to your descendants' has been inserted only after the verb (28.13 13.15 35.4 (Translator's note: (1) the personal pronouns and the personal possessive adjectives 'you' and 'your' are always in the singular in the Hebrew. the words 'and to your descendants' are added to 'to you'.12 26.15).

the words 'to you and to your seed' have been brought together in immediate succession and the verb on each occasion is put either before or after the whole phrase (26.3.3 28. The Patriarchal Stories 59 In other cases.4). Finally. which may be regarded as the latest stage in the process of formation. 48.14 18.18).16. 17. 28.14 'and in your descendants' is attached.7.18) 22.8.18 in your descendants will all the nations of the world find blessing 26.3. (18. 12. the personal element has receded entirely into the background so that the 'descendants' alone appear as the recipients of the promise (12. This holds particularly for the promise of the effectiveness of the blessing for others. 24.3.18 in him will all the nations of the world find blessing) 22. 18.18. the descendants alone are the receiver. 18. in the first group the effectiveness of the blessing is directed to 'all the clans of the earth'. 28. we must take up and anticipate briefly other promise themes which leave themselves open to similar observations.18 26. Before pursuing further the development of this formula. the verb is in the Nip'al (12. from whom the effectiveness of the blessing proceeds. is the patriarch himself (12. in the second to 'all the nations of the world'. in which the verb is in the Hitpa'el. 15. while in 28. Finally.4.18.2. that this is a subsequent addition is as clear here as in the corresponding formulations of the promises of the land.3 in you will all the clans of the earth find blessing 28. The development corresponds exactly to that in the . in the other it is in the Hitpa'el (22.7.4 12.) What is important for our perspective is that in the first group the receiver of the promise.14 in you will all the clans of the earth find blessing and in your descendants (18. in the second group.4). 26.18 takes an intermediate position.14).4 in your descendants will all the nations of the world find blessing The table shows clearly that the statements divide themselves into two groups: in the one.4). 26.

the other on the contrary does not. 'the land upon which you are lying. 'descendants') also plays a notable role in the promises of numerous posterity. These are also expressions in which the image of dust or sand is used.3. And so we will have to leave the formulation in 15.. the most important of which is the following: the formulations with 'to you'. On the one hand there are formulations in which a multiplication of the 'seed' is promised without the use of any image of comparison. in my opinion. There are. In these cases the promise of the land is part of a divine address related immediately to the narrative context and itself too points to the context: 'the land that you see.. The key-word 'seed' (Heb zera'. but on each occasion has a clear purpose.7.17). .1 This means therefore that we are dealing with two different lines of tradition. I will give it to you' (13. one of which links the 'promise of increase' (so Westermann) with the key-word 'seed'. which has not yet been inserted firmly into the formula. formengeschichtliche und stilkritische Untersuchungen zum Deuteronomium.15.15). 0. these too regularly speak of 'seed'. It is surprising that the expression 'seed' is never employed in these. 65. 'assembly* and others. On the other hand there are sentences in which the promise of numerous posterity is expressed by the concept of 'nation' .2. 1967. walk through the land. ZAW 70 (1958) 107-26. I will give it to you' 1 See below under 2.3. this is obviously part of a fixed deuteronomistic formula.13 is clear. Traditionsgeschichtliche Untersuchung von Genesis 15'.17 and 28. This is a further proof that the use or non-use of the word 'seed' is neither accidental nor arbitrary. 2 On the deuteronomistic character of 15. Kaiser. and likewise with a juxtaposed 'and to your seed'. J.2 However. is to be understood simply in this way.1). are more obviously related to the context than those formulas which we regard as later in the process of tradition. clear indications in favour of this. in which the expression 'to you will I give the land' stands at the beginning. the situation in 13. p. Ploger. Let us return to the promise of the land! The question might arise whether the line of development accepted above (2.G. because I will give it to you' (13. 'up. .7 out of consideration. cf.60 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch promise of the land. Literarkritische.

in Offenbarung als Geschichte. The phrase in 24. 39-59.3. At the other end of the scale there are formulations in which the receiver of the promise of the land is the 'seed' only. The Patriarchal Stories 61 (28. On each occasion ('I will give it') is found in the Hebrew text. Finally. pp.7 the formula is set within the 'note'1 about Abraham's foundation of an altar in Shechem. which can scarcely be described as narrative. the author is rather using the basic elements of the cult etiology in a very formalized way.12: here the promise of the land is set within an independent divine address.2 In 15. 1975. RendtorfF. esp.41ff. KuD Beih. More will be said later about the juxtaposed promise addresses where further arguments will be advanced in favour of an earlier allocation of the singular form of the promise of the land in the process of the formation of the tradition. This is the case particu1 See above under 2. 'Die Offenbarungsvorstellungen im Alten Israel'. the promise of increase) occurs in a variety of forms. 2 Cf.7 is a formalized cross reference to the promise of the land pronounced earlier in Abraham's address. the formula in 26.1. with the same suffix form as in the passages already mentioned. but the land is described as 'the land which I gave to Abraham and Isaac'.4. similarly Westermann.18 the formula is part of the note about the striking of the covenant which clearly stands apart from the narrative itself. refers to it. 2. 28.. and after the promise of increase. pp. it should be said that the assurance of a son is never pronounced in formalized phrases but always within narratives and in a form determined by the narrative context. it is similar in Jacob's address in 48.4 is part of a complex divine address with a number of promise elements. where it is set in conjunction with the preceding promise of increase.13). It is similar again in 35. . p. and the words 'I will give it to you'. 1 (1961.2. the suffix referring to the land about which the narrative is actually speaking. R. These occur particularly in short formalized sentences without any immediate relationship to a narrative context: In 12. 'Arten'.2 The promise of descendants The promise of descendants (posterity. First of all. 1970 [4th edn]) = Gesammelte Studien zum Alien Testament.2.

In 15. 21. Finally. then.14 32. 11-12).13 13.10 21. 15. 22.. dust and sand. was certainly independent (w.3.4 too the formulation of the assurance of the birth of a son is determined entirely by the context.12 26. so will your seed be I will increase your seed like the stars of heaven.5 26.16 I will make your seed like the dust of the earth 28.12 because after Isaac will your seed be named 26. originally. In the promises of increase. In Genesis 16.16 28. a combination of both. 19 show no formalized elements such as are found in the remaining promises of increase. the formulations with which the birth of a son is promised in 17.14 your seed will be like the dust of the earth (32. with the resumption of Abraham's hesitant utterances in v.10 I will increase your seed greatly so that it cannot be counted for number Then there are the images in which the great increase of the 'seed' is described. there are first of all a group of expressions which speak simply of the increase of the 'seed' without using further images or metaphors. 13.5 26. the stars. the announcement of the birth of a son to Hagar is made by taking up a poetic piece which.17 .4 15. 10.13 I will make your seed like the sand of the sea which cannot be counted for number) finally.24 I will increase your seed 16..14).24 16.4 count the stars! .16.62 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch larly for the narrative in Genesis 18 in which the promise of a son is the central constituent part of the narrative itself (w.

3) 48.4) 21.18 17.3 18. and of 'assembly' and 21.2 I will make you into a great nation 21.18 46.18 he will indeed become a great and strong nation 17.3 21.4 you will become father of a number of nations 17.4 17.6 17.20 35.5 because I will make you father of a number of nations 17.13 12. The assurance of the great increase of descendants is. there stands another group in which the word 'seed' does not appear.2.18 because I will make him into a great nation 46.11 28.17 I will increase your seed like the stars of heaven and the sand that is on the shore of the sea Over against these expressions. 17. and kings will come forth from you 17. entirely without comparative images.3 because I will make you into a great nation there 18.2 48.13 I will make you into a nation 12.16 may they increase in number over the earth) For the rest.6 I will make you very.16 she will become peoples.2 I will increase you very. kings of nations will come from her .16) 17.5 17. very fruitful. The Patriarchal Stories 63 22.16 17. very greatly (48. incidentally. the talk is of a 'nation' and 'nations' of 'peoples' . and I will make you into nations.

Westermann has pointed out that blessing cannot really be the object of promise. on the other hand. pp.1-4). as already noted.11 be fruitful and increase! A nation and an assembly of nations will come from you.1 When blessing is assumed into the realm of promise where it did not belong originally. 25-26.4 see. then some uncertainty or vagueness accompanies its use. he blessed me 1 Westermann. cf. very much. he will beget twelve princes.3-4 Jacob says: *E1 sadday appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan.3 may he make you fruitful and increase you. and kings will come forth from your loins (28. There is a further terminological difference: the verb 'to increase' hip'il) is used predominantly in the first group. On one occasion in the patriarchal story there is a report about the actual blessing-event and then the appropriate blessing formulas are pronounced (48.20 I will make him fruitful and increase him very. This too makes clear that we are dealing with traditions that are independent of each other. and hence it is not the object of a promise which will only find fulfilment in the future. And so one can recognize clearly that there are before us two different lines of tradition which differ in the use of the word 'seed' as well as in comparative images by means of which the numerous descendants are described.15-16. and I will make him a great nation 35. . 2. and you will become an assembly of peoples) (48.3 The blessing The declarations of increase are frequently joined with the assurance of blessing.64 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 17. though it occurs also in the second. also 28. There is no doubt that the idea behind this is that the blessing becomes effective at the instant that it is pronounced. the verb 'to be/make fruitful' qal/hip'il) is found only in the second group in combination with the notions of 'nation' etc. 'Arten'. I will make you fruitful and increase you and I will make you an assembly of peoples) The idea of 'seed' is completely missing from this whole group. At times the statement about the blessing precedes the divine address so that the address itself as a whole appears as blessing.3. In 48.

17..14. the precedence that Westermann1 established of the promise of blessing before the promise of increase holds: 17. It is striking too that the assurance of blessing for others ('clans' or 'nations') is always combined with promise of increase—but in reversed order: in all five places where the promise of blessing for others occurs. In 28. and God said to him: Your name is Jacob. 3 Cf. for the rest. 28. 26. I will make you fruitful.16. the idea of blessing (or the act of blessing) appears within the divine address. . 26. cit. In 26. p. 20. 26. and in the very large majority of cases with the promise of numerous posterity. pp. 18. with or without the mention of the 'seed'.. Westermann. 12 nor in v. 20.2.24..3 1 Op. 25. cit. but occurs always in combination with other themes. 22. In 12. 28.' Likewise. The Patriarchal Stories 65 and said to me: See..4. Here too there is no difference with respect to the formulations.18. 17. 28.' Further. 2 These are the correct references.2 the promise of increase stands immediately before the blessing ('I will make you a great nation and bless you'). This combination therefore is on a different level in the process of the history of tradition from the individual.4 the possession of the land is described as the immediate consequence of 'the blessing of Abraham'.12 does not belong here because the word occurs neither in v..3 it is linked with the assurance of guidance ('I will be with you and bless you').2. The obvious conclusion from all this is that the 'blessing' is not an independent promise theme.2-3.3). 22.17.16. independent development of both these sequences of pronouncements. and the promise of the land follows it. which use the expression 'seed' (22.24).2 It should be noted further that the pronouncements of blessing begin with both combinations of the groups of promises of increase mentioned above. it is preceded by an assurance of increase: 12. 32. 13.3. as well as with the others in which it is missing (12. 25-26.9-12 is introduced as blessing: Then God appeared to Jacob again when he came from Paddan-aram and blessed him. the whole divine address (consisting of two parts) in 35. op.17-18..

1971. This formulation is obviously very close to 31. This promise is formulated in very brief and lapidary wise: 'I will be with you' 26.15.3. 35. which has links with the promises of guidance. there is yet another independent element in the promise material. For example in 46. also 50. 31.24.D. 28. there are addresses there which are very close in content to these.e. ZAW 80 (1968) 139-73. is the reference to 'the land that I will show you'.2: 'Go forth to the land of Moriah and offer him (i. 31. Jacob's words to Joseph and his sons: 'God will be with you' 48. Preuss.24). 32.' (28.3. '.. Isaac) there on one of the mountains that I will 1 On the formula: H.3. 31. finally.3. D. However.3. 42.1: 'Go forth from your country and your kinsmen and your father's house to the country that I will show you'. Jahwes Mit-Sein—ein Ausdruck des Segens.5. Vetter. 'Return to the land of your fathers and your kinsmen' (31. but not in the Abraham story.66 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 2. A further element. cf. cf.10). 28.4 The guidance Finally.. . This promise often occurs as someone is about to set out on a journey for which guidance is assured.2). the brief formulations already mentioned are almost always there in a corresponding context: 'I will protect you everywhere you go. Talk of : in 26.20.15). cf.10. 32. namely the assurance of guidance which includes YHWH's presence or Taeing-with' the patriarch. or in a kind of reverse process: T)o not go down into Egypt.5 below. even though the phrase 'I am with you' is missing.13. similarly 31.24.2)..5. presents a problem of its own in connection with the formula. cf.4: 'I will go down with you into Egypt and I will bring you back again'. Also. ich will mit dir sein'. It is striking that these stylized.. For example in 12. but stay in this land which I bid you' (26.21). 2. lapidary promises of guidance occur in the Jacob and Isaac stories.3) or 'I am with you' 26. and will bring you back to this land.13). it recalls the command to Isaac to remain 'in the land which I bid you' (26. it occurs too in the form of a report: 'the God of my fathers has been with me' 31.42).1 One must include here as well: 'I will prosper you' 32. There is too a clear connection with the words in 22.

2.13 46. of Beth-El) I am YHWH.3 (31. If this is so. go through the length and breadth of the land' (13.13 46.17). it contains a divine command which requires Abraham to make a particular journey in trust.24 28.1] 26.1 [15. lapidary form. One must mention further in this context God's command to Abraham: 'Up. but there are pronouncements which. it should be further mentioned that a number of promise addresses are introduced by formulas in which the divinity presents itself.2.7 17.13) 15.24 28. Clearly.7 17. One can ask. who brought you out from Ur of the Chaldees I am El Sadday I am your shield] This survey shows that formulas like these were by no . show that Abraham set out and undertook a particular journey under divine instructions. then the basic element in the promise of guidance would have its original setting in the Abraham tradition. The Patriarchal Stories 67 show you'.1 I am the God of Abraham.3 31. then. if the stylized expression 'I am with you' draws something from this idea which it passes on to the other patriarchs. your father. They are brought together here. and the God of Isaac I am Ha-El. thence it would have found its way into the other patriarchal stories in its stylized. 26. in the opinion of the narrators.11 15. the God of Abraham. there are no explicit assurances of guidance in lapidary formulations in the Abraham story. The command to go uses the same language as in 12. By way of conclusion to this resume.1 and 26.3 15. the God of your father I am Ha-El.1 . therefore. and the reference to the 'mountain that I will show you' recalls both 12. your father I am YHWH.1 35.

2.3. 15.1 The keyword 'seed' occurs in both sentences.10. Here too the key-word 'seed' stands in an emphatic position at the end of the promise of the land: The land on which you are lying I will give to you and to your seed'. the word 'seed' now stands in an emphatic position at the end of the promise of the land. 16.15-16. 2. The promise of increase follows immediately.3.5 The combination of individual promise themes Among the individual themes of promise whose different formulations and variations we have examined and noted. The theme of guidance—given the overall frequency of its occurrence—is found alone for the most part: 31. In 13. cf. 13 (cf.18.7. 28.5. We have seen already that there is an extension of the original formula in the promise of the land which was directed only to the first patriarch. 31. There is in some cases a characteristic combination of the promises of land and increase. each of the other promise themes occurs also by itself within a divine address. the promise of the land.7. 'I will give it to you and to your seed for ever*.3. The promise of the land is found relatively seldom by itself. with the word 'seed' again in an 1 .3. we will begin again with the promise of the land.68 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch means used mechanically and that there was considerable variation in the individual formulations of the divine selfpredications.10.1) and in 15. 48.3. Consequently. and only in that group which belong together in the process of the formation of the tradition (12. 'and I will make your seed like the dust of the earth'. is followed immediately by the promise of increase. it is resumed immediately at the beginning of the promise of increase. independent promise themes. above 2. 35. 32. 24.3) that occurs always with other promise themes. The promise of increase occurs more often without other promises: 15. 17. 42. In our investigation of the combinations of different.21).20. for the most part it is joined to the theme of numerous posterity (promise of increase). it is only the promise of blessing (above 2. 18. This situation is even more characteristic in 28.12.13-14. 13.5.3. 21.

. Finally.2. One might formulate the matter in this way: the expansion of the promise of the land by the attachment of the 'seed' has drawn with it the addition of a promise of increase related to this 'seed'. It follows without any explicit link in v.3-4 too the promise of increase is at the beginning with the same terminology. The Patriarchal Stories 69 emphatic position at the beginning: 'And your seed will be like the dust of the earth'. . instead.11 the promise of increase appears in a detailed formulation: 'Be fruitful and increase! A nation and an assembly of nations will come from you. the parallelism therefore is clearly discernible. It seems therefore as a whole to be a more developed stage of the combination of the promise of increase and the promise of the land.11-12. It is immediately clear. the word 'seed' is at the very end without any reference to the promise of increase.word 'seed' binding the two. and certainly not 1 . instead of the two-fold 'to you . The combination is reversed when the promise of increase precedes the promise of the land. The text by and large is somewhat more compact and shows in addition an interesting shift of emphasis. a sort of link by association. 12.3-4.1 The link appears even more clearly here as an explicit resumption of the key-word 'seed'. and kings will go forth from your loins'.word 'seed' is not used. We are dealing here with those formulations of the promise of increase in which the key. that the presuppositions here are different in many ways. where explicit reference is made to the promise in 35. however. there are the notions of 'nation' and 'assembly' as well as the verbs 'to be fruitful' and 'to increase'. Firstly. the promise of the land follows at the end with the key. In these cases therefore we are dealing not with a gradual expansion of the promise. The sequence and the theme correspond in 48. It must be mentioned further that in both cases the promise of increase is formulated with the image of 'dust of the earth'. In this respect therefore there is no immediate connection between the formulations of the promise of increase and the promise of the land. in 28. And so one can speak here of a gradual expansion of the promise. there is only 'to your seed'. and to your seed'. the only two places where that image occurs. in 35.

The theme is unfolded in several layers: first. the promise of the land is attached to it. G. Habilitationsschrift. . and finally. Macholz. the promise of the land is firmly embedded in the context and draws the promise of increase with it by means of the key-word 'seed' which is attached and so extends it. Israel und das Land. 5-6). also Gen. as object of the divine 'covenant' with Abraham (v. Heidelberg. Vorarbeiten zu einem Vergleich zwischen Priesterschrift und deuteronomistischen Geschichtswerk. So ends the long divine address with the combination of different promise themes.1 the real theme of this extensive promise address is the promise of increase. 35. as one in which a second element of the promise has been attached to the first for the sake of completion without the formulations themselves having given any occasion for it. One gets the impression that the promise of the land was felt to be necessary here for completion. One might describe this situation. 2). pp. 2 Cf. though the real theme is the promise of increase. cf. There are therefore two clearly separate ways of combining the promise of the land and the promise of increase: in the one case. in contrast to the former. the 'seed' offers the key-word for attaching the promise of the land (v. Genesis 17 belongs here too. without any immediate linguistic link. and linked also with a promise of increase.15 and 28. then. where a change of name from Jacob to Israel occurs likewise in a divine address. 7).9-12. then as the unfolding of the change of name (w. 42ff.2 the key-word 'covenant' is taken up anew and developed by bringing it into explicit relationship with the 'seed' (v. The reason is rather that these two promise themes were now regarded as belonging together.13. It is obvious that we are dealing here with a later stage 1 On Gen. but rather with the fitting together of two completely self-contained and independent elements. 17. Ch. it is a question of promise addresses which are independent of the context and in which the promise of increase is first of all the real theme. 8) where.70 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch with the resumption of a particular element by association. in the other case. it stands at the very beginning of the (more detailed) formulation. 1969. in contrast to 13.

There is a sentence in v. 28. v. 17).2. The Patriarchal Stories 71 where promise themes have been simply added. 15 which is obviously joined to the context more immediately than those which precede it: it is the assurance of the divine guidance and presence to Jacob on the journey before him. (2) that in the course of the reworking and with obvious reference to the context ('the land upon which you are lying*) the promise of the land was added (v. after the combination of the promise of the land and the promise of increase (w. the two elements of the promise of the land and the promise of increase have the effect of a later stage in the growth or reworking of the text. Finally. We must now go back again to the first group of texts. 15-16). then it is clear here as well that the relationship of v. and then drew with it the promise of increase. Genesis 13 and 28. 13). In addition. there is a further passage in the divine address (v. 15). taking up the key-word 'seed'. namely that the promise of the land drew the promise of increase with it. Let us begin with ch. 17 to the context is even closer than that of the remaining verses: crossing the land is a pre-requisite for Abraham to arrive finally in Mamre (v. In both cases. crossing is a much more immediate and concrete way of taking possession than seeing (v. 15) was the earliest part of the present context. 17 presents the earliest stage of the promise of the land in the process . (3) that this was expanded. it is concerned yet again with the promise of the land. The situation is very similar in Genesis 13. In the face of this assurance of guidance. the promise address is not at an end with the combination of the promise of the land and the promise of increase with which we have been dealing so far. Now if the view expounded above is correct. When we approach the text with the insights gained from Genesis 28. We must certainly ascribe the addition of these two promise themes to an overarching reworking of the patriarchal story. in contrast to the gradual growth and development of the themes in the course of the process of their being passed on. In this text too. 18) which he must reach for the further continuation of the narrative. The narrative of the revelation in a dream at Bethel is thus brought into immediate relationship with the composition of the Jacob story as a whole. then we must assume: (1) that the assurance of guidance (v.

Further. 4 would also favour this. 4b. .72 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch of the history of the tradition.3b) in the form in which 'you and your seed' are brought together in immediate succession and not separated by the verb. again with the plural reference to 'all these lands'. Finally. hence. Then comes a promise of the land (v. 4a). only the 'seed' appears as the receiver of the promise. 5). basing it in detail on Abraham's conduct (w. inasmuch as the key-word 'seed' has not yet been added: 'I will give it to you'. plural. representing an intermediate stage in the history of the process of the development of the tradition. namely 26. see 2. there.1 A promise of increase follows (v. a formulation which elsewhere is all prevailing in deuteronomistic usage. In any case. the passage concludes with the promise of blessing for others. the procedure is to be reck1 On the oath formula. 4 in the promise of the land in the patriarchal story. yet another promise of the land is attached (v. a later reworking transposed the promise of the land after the promise of increase where it is often found at a later stage of the process of the formation of the tradition. Even though the situation here is not quite as clearly discernible as in Genesis 28. The passage contains therefore a series of unusual elements. one further text must be mentioned which can be fitted only with difficulty into the reflections advanced so far on the combination of different promise themes. it may be explained as follows: First. then.3 where the promise holds 'for you and your seed'. The two-fold promise of the land is striking. it is made to follow yet again. the plural occurs only here and in v. Finally. but this time it is a promise to *your seed' only. following our reflections. 4ad) according to which the 'seed' is to be like 'the stars in the sky*. it is quite unusual for the promise of the land to be traced back to an 'oath' of God to Abraham. nevertheless we can presume a similar process of growth for 13. 2. It is striking that the promise is directed to 'all these lands'.7 below.3a).25. The promise address begins with the assurance of guidance on which the promise of blessing follows immediately (w. the promise of increase was understood as a consequence of the promise of the land.13-15.14-17 as for 28. represents a later stage in the process of tradition than v. The version in v. and this.

and the promise of the land is linked with these by an emphatic *because'. The Patriarchal Stories 73 oned as involving several stages.3.2 the promise of increase again follows the assurance of guidance.10-11. especially in short. some further observations on the combinations in which the promise of guidance occurs: this too is found together with a variety of other promise themes. If we include here the non-stylized statements of the Abraham story. Further. We will return to this again. In the accounts of the divine guidance or the divine presence with Jacob. the unusual formulations point to a stage of reworking which is not identical with most of the other promise addresses. where there is talk of God's 'prospering* Jacob and the visible expression which this finds in the increase of his possessions. according to our earlier observations.5. 15) is the first step in the expansion of the promise address. the blessing does not appear as a separate element in his table of possible promise types. likewise in 31. In some cases it is clearly linked with the promise of increase. 42). There are then a number of possible combinations with the assurance of guidance. in 46. Indeed. In 28. as Westermann has already shown.1 The promise of the land can occur alone. In 26. despite great variety. then in 12. 'Arten'. Synthesizing the results of our study of the combination of the different promise elements we see that. 13b) to the assurance of guidance (v. p. . the addition of the promise of the land (v. Finally. and in 13. the promise of blessing follows at once on the assurance of guidance.17 the promise of the land follows it. 32. it has become quite clear now that the combination of promise elements often has something to do with the function of the promise addresses in a particular narrative context. The promise of blessing is not an independent promise element.3 the promise of increase is worked into the assurance of guidance: Tor there I will make you into a great nation'.2. the 'blessing' in the form of wealth in herds is the consequence of the presence (31. definite contours stand out. in 26. 1 Westermann.13-15 too.24 the divine address contains only these two promise elements.

the promise of the land is not linked with other promise elements. in combination with the promise of the land. in the relationships of the promise themes and formulations to each other. The promise of increase. the promise of the land is combined with the promise of increase in such a way that the latter. so as to round off the general theme of promise. It is scarcely by chance that we are concerned here with these brief formulations. the promise of the land is the older in the process of the formation of the tradition. which now speak of the 'seed' as the receiver of the promise. And so we come to the question of the structure and composition of the patriarchal story and the over-arching . nothing of importance is attached to it. the other.4 The function of the promise addresses in the composition of the patriarchal story The question now arises whether. formulated differently. that it is itself the earlier element in the process of the formation of the tradition and that the promise of the land has been added to it. Likewise in 15. 15. 2. 24. Finally. it is the reverse—the promise of the land is attached to the promise of increase. For the rest. it is in a context stamped by deuteronomistic language. in some cases. the promise of the land combines in a characteristic way with the assurance of guidance. in such cases. on the one hand.7: 'to your seed will I give this land'.18. more can be said about the function of the promise addresses in the patriarchal story. associated with it by the key-word 'seed'. relatively late in the process of the formation of the tradition. that it grows out of the promise of the land.7.74 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch stylized phrases as in 12. in such cases. The promise of increase occurs rather frequently without the addition of other promise elements. cf. on the other hand. Even when it is combined with the promise of blessing. grows out of it. In each of these cases the context is exclusively that of the promise of the land. The promise of increase is also combined with the assurance of guidance in particular ways.7. admits of two possibilities: the one. the promise of increase is earlier in the process of the formation of the tradition than the promise of the land.

Jacob receives the divine command to return to the land of his fathers. in the closing address in v. the promise of the land stands underscored as the centrepiece.3 could also be understood in a future sense. 12.1 even though the language in which it is expressed takes a somewhat different form. They form. they can well be elements of the theological reworking of the collection. 13). First. though it be from Abraham's . When we look at the content of the two addresses.15. that besides the guidance. let us consider the Isaac story. hence. The Patriarchal Stories 75 reworking. 'I am with you'. op.2-4. 3 It is to be noted that the term in Gen. It contains only two divine addresses. we find that w. 2.1 and 24. only the promise of increase is there with the guidance. i is the place whence Abraham set out. 4-5 with the words from v. 7. It is clear. cit. then. Neither has any immediate connection with the narrative context. the emphatic end-point of the theological interpretation of the Isaac story. Both contain the element of the assurance of guidance. In contrast. It marks the first decisive intervention in the life-story of Jacob—the flight to Haran. 31.2 It is there with all its force in the first divine address to Jacob in 28. The element of guidance plays an important role in the Jacob story as well. The theme appears yet again at the very end of the Jacob story: in 46. however.24) of the collection of Isaac traditions. as already noted in detail. but serves the theological interpretation of the Jacob story in the context.2. It appears a second time and is underscored at the next turning point: in 31.4. 3) breaks the narrative thread which i resumed again in w. Kessler. a very complex and many layered picture. It is only at the end of Jacob's address to his wives that the divine command to depart is mentioned and communicated directly (v. one at the beginning (26. Jacob is the subject of a divine address before he sets out 1 in 26.3 is not used of the whole land as in Gen. Both divine addresses begin with the phrase *YHWH appeared to him'.3 It is particularly striking here that the divine address (v. p. 2-5 present.2-5). 140. 2 Cf. the other at the end (26.3. 24.. It is obvious here that the divine address with the theme 'guidance' is not part of the narrative. here it is the goal to which Jacob will return.

however. Of the promise elements.2 here too there are obvious linguistic links with Genesis 17.1). The Jacob story. Let us turn finally to the Abraham story.76 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch for Egypt. its main content is the assurance of guidance on the journey. With regard to the content. framed as it is by divine addresses.12) with (17.3). the second begins with the extensively elaborated promise of increase.19). stands at the beginning and the end of the Abraham narrative. it is only the promise of increase that has been interwoven into the assurance of guidance (46. as we have already seen. 12. the Abraham story too begins with a narrative of guidance or. our analysis shows that the promise of the land is in the foreground in the first of the divine addresses (28. Following our observations so far. more accurately.9-12). it is certainly no chance that there is also a guidance narrative at the end of the Abraham story with the injunction to make a particular journey under divine instruction (Gen. has double conclusion. the beginning. 2 Compare. and the theological interpretation that goes with it. and was elaborated first out of the promise of guidance. Yet another detailed divine address stands before the broadly developed Joseph story (35. The Jacob story. The instruction. Nevertheless. Here. The framework of the Jacob story.. . which becomes divine guidance because of Abraham's obedience. there are two divine addresses: the first contains Jacob's change of name and thus is clearly a parallel to Abraham's change of name in Genesis 17. therefore. rather it exhibits several stages or layers. is framed by these three assurances of guidance. There is a parallel to the Isaac story here. the turning point. At the conclusion. to which again 1 a promise of the land has been attached. More exactly. the theme of 'guidance'. are each marked out by a divine promise address.13). with a divine address in which the element of guidance occupies a central place: 'Go forth from your country. to the land that I will show you' (12. obviously did not take place at one stroke. is not as fixed and formalized as with Isaac and Jacob. (35.. the promise of the land stands at 1 In v. for example. 22). and the end of his 'journey'.

brings the traditions about them together into one large unit. it is developed further as an 'oath' of YHWH. though not in the fixed and formalized form. 28. it is applied to Ishmael.18).18). The function of the divine addresses as framework and interpreters are once more clearly recognizable in this promise element. This promise. The promise of increase also occurs at the very beginning: 'I will make you into a great nation (12. 17.14). 13. further.15-18 is of special importance for our purpose. 21. 17. 13. which clearly extends beyond the limits of the narrative of the offering of Isaac. The nip'al form is found at the beginning of the Abraham story (12. here too the promise of increase is emphasized at the conclusion.1).13.1 As in the other collections. These verses underscore the close of the Abraham story. It appears first with an introductory function in the Abraham story (12.3) and in the Jacob story (28. that each of the three patriarchs is to be a blessing for the whole human race. 15. the hitpa'el 1 Chapters 23 and 24 form a sort of appendix or post-script to the Abraham story which has been largely shaped into a unity.7.5.14). and it is found yet again at the close of the Abraham story (22. it is repeated in the citation in 18. and notably at the beginning.12. in the first divine address to each of the patriarchs (26. The passage 22.18.15. 15. with formulations which have been taken up again in the introductory passages of the Isaac story (26. For the rest. 16. and then no more. The Patriarchal Stories 77 the very beginning.10. This procedure by which the stories of the patriarchs have been brought together allows still more precise distinctions in the process of the history of the traditions.20. when Abraham is to set out 'to the land that I will show you' (12. 21.2-5). This 'addition'. and then throughout the whole Abraham narrative.2). 17 (passim).8).18. A further element in the closing address must be mentioned here: the promise of blessing for others (22.2). .16.2. It occurs once in each of the Isaac and Jacob stories.4.7.17. We spoke earlier of the different linguistic formulas of the promise of blessing for others.18. the promise of the land is found particularly in the early chapters of the narrative (12. is obviously one of those passages of the framework such as we have encountered already in the Isaac and Jacob stories.

The whole of the divine address to Abraham in 22. Later.4. and another reason was added which in both language and thought is close to that of Deuteronomy. . the formulations in 12. In contrast to the two other collections of narratives. 'in that'.18) and in the Isaac story (26.3. The reason is that Abraham listened to the voice of God.16-18 and 26. Considering this from the point of view of the process of formation of the tradition.3-5 is quite clear.24. The assembling of the patriarchal stories therefore to form a larger unit took place in different stages. 2 See also the phrase 'because of Abraham my servant' in 26.4). later formulations were used here in the process of the formation of the tradition. the following emerges: a first phase saw the Abraham and Jacob stories bound together by means of the promise of blessing for others. Corresponding to this. following our observations. older from the point of view of the history of traditions than those in 22. In both cases the promise address comprises the promise of increase—using largely the same terminology1—and the promise of blessing for others.18 and 26. And so the very tight link both in language and content between 22.2 in 26.3 and the promise described as the fulfilment ('maintenance') of the oath. this oath is taken up explicitly in 26.3 and 28.4 of'all nations of the world'.14 are. 12. especially between the conclusion of the Abraham and the Isaac stories. the gift of'all these lands' is assured.78 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch form on the contrary at the conclusion of the Abraham story (22. introduced by a phrase which one might render by 'that is why9. the divine 1 Talk of possessing the gate of one's enemies' in 22. In both cases the reason is given. there. this statement is expanded in the deuteronomistic style. and which is rare in the Old Testament and is found only in these two places in Genesis. But there is more in common.17 does not occur in 26. the collections of the Abraham and Jacob stories that had a more markedly narrative form were joined together. First.5. 22.14 speak of'all the clans of the earth'. the Isaac story was added to them as a collection in its own right. Each of the patriarchal stories had its own antecedent history.16 is introduced by a solemn oath formula.3 and 28. A second phase saw the same promise element of blessing used to bind the Isaac tradition as well to the Abraham tradition.18 and 26.

the promise of increase only became part of it at a later stage in the reworking. It is striking here that there are scarcely any connecting links between the promise of the son and the promise of increase in its more detailed form. even though. The key-word 'seed' is used here. There are promise addresses here of broader compass whose function is more than constructing a framework. As for the narrative account of the tradition of the birth of Ishmael. there is talk only of the one son. The different promise elements were taken up into these speeches. In the Isaac story. and in the process the element of guidance. However.12: 'because your seed shall be named after Isaac'. there is only the brief remark in 21. in which the Isaac story was brought in. This means therefore that when the promise of posterity was developed further in the form of the promise of increase. The Patriarchal Stories 79 promise addresses were not yet inserted into the narrative context but stood by themselves as independent speeches. coincides with the stage when the final framework of the Abraham story was constructed by means of the promise address at the conclusion of the group of Negev-narratives. here too one can always discern typical links with the other patriarchal stories. In the Jacob story too. In the Abraham story. in the narrative of the promise of the birth of a son to Abraham and Sarah. This must be investigated in further detail. With regard to Isaac. promise addresses occur and serve only to construct the framework described. the narrative of the promise of a son was not included in it. In Genesis 18. whereas there is no talk here of numerous posterity. which plays an important role in the Jacob story. their use is to be understood basically in the same way. And so the talk of the increase of . This phase. because one can discern readily definite layers of tradition and reworking. they have been brought somewhat more into the narrative context. The promise of the son occurs first in narrative form. acquired a prominent place. the situation is somewhat different.2. but the primary purpose is to emphasize the legitimate line of the posterity through Isaac in contrast to Ishmael. First. We begin with the promise of posterity. we must take up an observation mentioned earlier. there is no reference at all to a promise of increase in the sense of numerous posterity. up to a point.

This text too begins with the promise of a son as an answer to Abraham's hesitant questions (w. though it does in the Jacob story in 28. the multiplication of the 'seed' is to be like the dust of the earth.1-6 as it now lies before us.1-6. 2 See above under 2. that Ishmael is to become a (great) nation (21. it occurs in the Isaac story in 26.16 where. a text which is traditio-historically parallel. as a single statement. Given the context of the Abraham story.2 and 18. for the rest. Ishmael is to become a (great) nation. where the new name is explained in a word play as 'the father of a host Cab-hamon) of nations' (17. from which the word 'seed' is missing. 22.18 (where it is expanded). But it then moves on to speak of the abundance of posterity. A further expression of the promise of increase appears in 13.15-18 (v. so that it is in this that one must look for the purpose of the text of 15. The image of the stars is found again in the Abraham story only in the closing passage. . there is the single statement about a great nation in 12. By and large. in the framework of the extension of the promise of the land to the promise of increase. The promise of the son therefore is developed further towards the promise of increase. there is the rather frequent statement.4. It is also said.10 stands in a quite isolated divine address.20.3.4-5). that the posterity will become a nation.18). it is 1 See above under 2. 2-4).18. First. 17).2 The groupings here are again clearly different.5. This formulation does not occur again in the rest of the Abraham story.80 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch descendants (seed) in 16. and repeated.14.2. there is no doubt that Isaac is in mind.13. This statement is heavily underscored in the framework of the alteration of 'Abram's' name to 'Abraham'. the same occurs in a very different sort of context in 17. a great nation. occurs again in 46.1 Finally. There is another group of texts in which an increase to 'peoples' is promised.13. the promise of the son and the promise o increase are clearly separated. at the conclusion of the Jacob story. The situation is somewhat different in 15.3. therefore. making use of the image of the stars.3. in 21. It is noteworthy that this formulation. or nations.

3 There is a further series of texts in which the promise of the land is likewise the consequence of the promise of increase. cf.2. First. II).5. have had scarcely any connection with each other. We must again begin with a text in which the promise is an immediate constituent part of the context. The plural occurs twice more in Genesis 17 (w. 17.7 he (Terah) brought them from Ur of the Chaldees to go to the land of Canaan I who brought you out from Ur of the Chaldees to give you this land to possess The gift of the land is here linked closely with the journey to the land. in part.7-21. where a corresponding assurance is given to Jacob.1.31 15. while the possession of the land is assured to the 'seed' as well. 48. The orientation of the promise of the land is different in 13. where there is an accumulation of ideas. where Abraham is ordered to journey to the land which YHWH will show him.31. 2 So with the Sam and LXX.3. rather. 16). 3 See above under 2.4. namely 15. 6.16. The Patriarchal Stories 81 conceivable that the plural form 'nations' had its origin in this word play.14-17. It is similar in the case of the promise of the land.912).1 The promise of increase has certainly not been developed at one stroke in the course of the reworking of the Abraham story. . 'nation and an assembly of nations' (v. fits nicely into this context. We will have to reckon here with a gradual growth of the tradition. outside the divine address in the form in 28. 2. it is the original announcement of the occupation of the land where Abraham is already living.31 15. 11. Once again we must refer to the parallel texts in 28.13-15.7 11. 12. 1 Gen. Here it is a matter of the assurance of the possession of the land after the separation from Lot. one must note carefully that this verse is formulated in quite obvious parallelism to 11. and then in the passage that frames the Jacob story (35. besides also D'D. there has been a series of stages which. BHS.3.

in parallel passages about Sarah (17. it is noteworthy too that the promise of the land is the centre point for the author of Genesis 24 so that he sees it as the decisive assurance of YHWH to which he has Abraham's servant summoned. 35. We can reckon therefore with a stage in the process of the history of tradition in which. cf.17). with the same wording. For the rest. The same formula confirms the striking of the covenant in 15. Likewise.3.2) and at the end (22.9). Let us summarize: we have seen that the promise addresses have on the one hand gone through a varied and many-lay- .3. the formulation is notably different from 15.8. The citation of a divine address in 24. in a series of passages where the real interest is the promise of increase. In conclusion.20).3) where there is talk of the blessing. the promise of the land occurs in brief.7 and belongs without doubt to a quite different stage in the process of formation. in the Jacob story. and in precisely in the same places in the Isaac story (26.3. it is found twice more in the Abraham story in conjunction with the promise of increase. the promise of the land itself is not the real theme. This is the case in 17. before and after the journey to Haran (28. belongs here also. then again at the very end (48.7. the place where it occurs is not without significance. also 26. Finally. at the beginning (12. the promise of the land has been added. 48. One could say then that the promise of the land in 12. let us add a few remarks on the promise of blessing.16) and Ishmael (17.7 holds a similar emphatic position. We have discovered that it always occurs in combination with other promise elements.4. and certainly not by chance. 35. this is underscored by the brief to your seed will I give this land'. However.4. one must always keep in mind that one is dealing here with a late stage in the process of formation of the tradition. In the Abraham story it occurs. Here. formalized sentences without any link with other promise elements. characteristic of these is that the promise is addressed only to the 'seed'.18.12. and outside the Abraham story in 28. Here too one can recognize clearly a deliberate intention in the placing of the promise elements. 24).82 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch We have already referred to this combination of the promises of increase and land. When Abraham takes possession of Shechem as a place of cult.

and blessing. and at the beginning of each of the Isaac and Jacob stories (26. of a variety of links with the other promise themes—land. The reworking did not take place at one stroke. These were obviously the two elements which had established themselves as stamping and covering comprehensively the patriarchal stories. It pervades and stamps the Jacob story also. Likewise. see above under 2. however. has been reworked in different stages and provided with theological interpretations. 46.15.1 The blessing for others is a second promise element which joins together all three patriarchal stories. by means. The Abraham story too is determined by it. there are still further passages to mention in which the divine guidance appears as a determining element (28. 28.5.1. posterity. in the course of the process of its formation. 12. a clearly stamped guidance narrative stands at the beginning (12. 31.18) of the Abraham story. There can be no doubt therefore that the patriarchal stories present an independent larger unit which. there is a close link between the guidance and the blessing for others.20. besides the divine addresses (28.1-3) and the end (ch. the element of guidance is in an emphatic position at the beginning of the two divine addresses which frame it (26. 31. The Patriarchal Stories 83 ered process of development.2-3. and the divine promise addresses dominate both the reworking and the interpretation. In the Isaac story. but shows signs of different stages and layers. 24).2.3. 32. It is also discernible that this reworking has had its effect in different ways in the individual parts of the collection: in the Abraham story it has had its most profound 1 The term 'narrative' is not at all appropriate for Gen. Certain elements are particularly prominent.1-9.34). but on the other hand have been carefully and consciously made a part of the reworking and theological interpretation of the patriarchal stories.4.3) and at the end (22. It stands at the beginning (12. here.10-11).2. . 22). It is of particular importance that the promise addresses have been used to frame the individual patriarchal stories and to join them to each other. the intention and careful planning which have directed the process are in many cases clearly discernible. In these last two. 42.14).

in the patriarchal story.7). belong to the content of the promise addresses.7. This is clear at once in the passages where themes occur which.18 (Abraham). 2. and that once again by means of the promise address. referring to the increase of the Israelites. The question now arises whether one can demonstrate a reworking. not very specific. holds for the whole of the patriarchal story. But before all else. while in the Isaac story it appears only in the two divine addresses without any reference to the context. determined by the same purposes and using the same means. in particular.84 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch effect in the narratives. has undergone intensive reworking and theological interpretation. are not found in the traditions of the book of Exodus. Thus one can see that this promise. 26. 12.3. in the Jacob story it shows itself as an element of the composition. And this suggests that we direct the question first to the continuation of the patriarchal story in the book of Exodus. This finds its clearest expression in the promise addressed to all three patriarchs that they are to be a blessing for the whole human race: Gen. the contents of the promise addresses of Genesis scarcely occur and are not at all the centre point. The prolific increase in numbers of the Israelites is mentioned in the very first verses of Exodus (1. in both its individual parts and as a whole. there are but two terms. as a determining and characteristic element. The direct divine address is used far less often than in the patriarchal story. 28. which have already occurred in the promise of increase in the book of Genesis.14 (Jacob). . for the rest of the Pentateuch as well.5 The absence of any definite reworking in Exodus-Numbers It has been shown that the patriarchal stories represent a selfcontained larger unit which. 22. but there is no reference at all1 to the constantly repeated promise of increase 1 In the very redundant Exod. which stands as a signature tune (Motto) at the beginning of the Abraham story. 1. A first result is a negative conclusion: the promise addresses. it is clear that the reworking has fitted these three collections together so as to form one composite whole.4 (Isaac).

24. at a time determined by God. It is not. p. references to the patriarchal story are not the verbs and see above under 2. 'Arten'. broad land. However. In Gen. the Hivites. there is not a word which mentions that the patriarchs have already lived a long time in this land and that God has promised it to them and their descendants as a permanent possession. the land is introduced as something entirely new. it shows what sort of reflections on the relationship of the promise of the land to the patriarchs and the liberation from the slavery in Egypt can be employed. Introduction to the Old Testament. Fohrer-Sellin. and instead. they are to return to the land promised them. But they are not spoken to as such. nevertheless.2. One would expect that this promise would be taken up in Exodus 3.8). The land is introduced here as an unknown land. and more. the home of the Canaanites. The absence of this link is even clearer when these texts are set over against some passages in the patriarchal story in which the link between the promise of the land to the fathers and the leading out from Egypt is expressly made. 27. into a land that flows with milk and honey. 50. as a land that is the home of foreign nations. the Israelites are to journey after they have been rescued from slavery in Egypt. In Gen. The Patriarchal Stories 85 addressed to the fathers.2. the Amorites. Joseph says to his brothers before his death: 'God will come to your aid and will take you out of this land (Egypt) to the land which he promised on oath to Abraham. This text stands in splendid isolation within the patriarchal story. .13-16.3. 2 Cf. the Perizzites. and the Jebusites' (3. pp. 124f. The text reads: 'I will lead you into a good. Isaac. 15. The situation is even more striking with the first mention of the land into which it has been proclaimed. 1 Cf. those addressed here would be the 'seed' for whom the promise holds good.1 of which the author is obviously not aware. there is a theological-historical reflection on the theme that the Israelites must first pass through a period of slavery in a foreign land before.2 Following the terminology of the promise of the land in Genesis. And so the silence about these links in Exodus 3 is all the more striking. the Hittites. Westermann. and Jacob'.

2-9. Further.4). and with the addition of the assurance 'to be your God and the God of your descendants after you' (17. In Exod. 3.8. but not by way of resuming one of the promise elements. 17. with the whole range of promises sounding. with Isaac. Ch. and Jacob (v. In the former. The land is described as the 'land of Canaan' and 'the land of sojourning(s)' (Exod. In Exod.18). The formulation corresponds to that in Gen. 6. The text reads: Then God remembered the covenant with Abraham. in the latter.7. .1 At the end of the divine address. which has no immediate connection with the narrative context. nothing is said about the content of the covenant obligation. one might perhaps conclude that the author had in mind some sort of general statement. and moreover. and with Jacob' (v. the assurance of God's presence has been taken up from 17. there is a transition piece between the story of Moses' youth and the following traditions about his call and the leading out of Egypt.3. it is once more stated expressly that God will lead the Israelites into the land that he has solemnly promised to give to Abraham. Isaac. it stands outside the narrative context in an independent narrative address. see above under 2.23-25. 7). Macholz. 24). 8).5. n. 2. than a concrete promise.7 in a somewhat adapted formulation (v. there is a very extensive divine address. . where there is likewise reference back to the promises to the patriarchs. within the patriarchal stories. cf. This means then that this connection has been made only in a relatively late stage in the 1 On the as yet unsolved problem of the understanding of G. 2.24. it is a matter of a resumption of those formulations which. This is a reference back to the patriarchal story. it is the land that is mentioned as the content of the divine self-obligation (15.1). n. Only in Genesis 15 and 17 is there talk of this 'covenant'. The word 'covenant' is there again. the theme 'covenant' is developed extensively.86 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch entirely lacking. it is rather by mention of the 'covenant' that God made with the patriarchs. 6. but only in explicit relationship to the promise of the land. However. The reference back to the patriarchal story is obvious. 17. 141a. In Exod. rather like Gen. belong to the latest in the process of the formation of the tradition.

The address corresponds almost word for word to that of Joseph in Gen. and they will take possession of it for ever' (32. Isaac. There are some further places. especially to the promise of the land. in the patriarchal story. your servants to whom you swore by yourself and to whom you spoke: I will increase your seed like the stars of heaven. 2 Further detail see below under whereas it occurs in connection with the promise of the land only twice outside the divine address (Gen. 22. see below under 2. The address of YHWH to Moses in Exod. Isaac.* In these places. 24. Exodus 13 contains cultic prescriptions about the eating of the unleavened bread and the offering of the firstborn. where there are references to the promises to the patriarchs.16 and 26. The Patriarchal Stories 87 process.1 reads: TJp. after the people had sinned by making the golden calf. is added here. And so it is a matter of the two passages in which. God's oath is joined with the promise of the land. 5.7. though quite sporadic. go on your way from here. In each case it is said of the land. and Israel. 50.7. There is a clear echo of Gen. and the whole of this land of which I have spoken to you I will give to your seed. 50. however. there is extensive reference to the promises to the patriarchs: 'Remember Abraham. that it is that which YHWH swore to the patriarchs to give to the Israelites (w. and Jacob: to your seed I will give it'.16-17 with the oath that YHWH swore by himself and the promise of increase under the image of the stars. 24. 33. the promise of the land. . One can recognize again 1 For the connection with the tradition in Exod.2.8.2 The reference therefore is to a layer of tradition in the patriarchal story which is relatively late and by no means central. 3.3. with certain differences in the formulation. to the land of which I swore to Abraham.24). In the prayer of Moses. the citation of the divine address to that in Gen. missing in Genesis 22. it refers not to the promise of the land but to the promise of increase.13). The prescriptions in both cases refer to the period after YHWH will have led the Israelites into the land. 22. you and your people whom you have lead out of the land of Egypt.11). There is talk here of the oath which is found in the patriarchal stories in Gen.

Both are here brought into relationship with each other in a new way and with a new posing of the question. he is to do so 'in order that they may believe that YHWH. God's presentation of himself as the God of the father .5). he refers to 'the God of your fathers [who] has sent me to you' (v. Isaac. the God of Abraham. And finally. has appeared to me. the question of the identity of the God who appeared to Moses with the God of the patriarchs. the God of Isaac. The point at issue is this: the legitimation of Moses and the demonstration that the God who appeared to him and sent him to the Israelites to lead them out of Egypt is YHWH. 16). and the God of Jacob' (3. the God of Abraham. But the reworking did not find its way into the narrative substance. and the God of Jacob. the God of their fathers. Then. It is a question of continuity. the God of Isaac. There was clearly a layer of reworking which joined the two complexes of tradition together. But it is not a continuity of the contents of the promises. the God of Abraham. The consequence of this is an entirely new relationship between the Moses tradition and the tradition of the patriarchs. and the contents of the promises are not mentioned.6). The identity of YHWH with the God of the fathers is the central question here. They are stacked together in Exodus 3 and following. the God of the patriarchs takes the central position. it is a continuity of God's revelation. the God of your fathers. There is alongside this another group of explicit references back to the patriarchal story in which the 'God of the fathers' is mentioned. and he is to bear the good news of YHWH to the Israelites with the opening words: *YHWH. and none other than the God of the patriarchs Abraham. has appeared to you' (4. and Jacob.88 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch and again from the different passages throughout the book of Exodus isolated references back to the patriarchal story. 15). as one would expect from the patriarchal stories. Isaac. Instead. The very first of YHWH's addresses to Moses reads: 'I am the God of your father. The patriarchs are not now spoken of as receivers of the promise. This latter question plays no explicit role in the patriarchal stories. rather it has the mark of a relatively late layer in the process of formation. when Moses has to justify himself before the Israelites. and Jacob' (v. more precisely. when Moses has to justify himself by signs.

Further. Exodus 3-4 is concerned with a central and theologically important text at the beginning of the Moses tradition in which one is to expect basic pointers to the understanding of that whole. 32. there is no reference at all to the corresponding promise themes in the patriarchal stories. In Exodus 3-4. This goes together with the observation that with the information about the prolific increase of the people (Exod.. 9).5.3 Hence. 46. These references show that this designation for God occurs only in a relatively narrow section of the patriarchal traditions and that it nowhere serves to give expression to the continuity of revelation. when taking up this episode in 32.8). 1. 15. 18. In the basic stage of their formation and reworking.2. 3 See above under 2. these two traditions obviously did not belong together. besides the divine address. 1 It is only here that the divine name YHWH occurs when God is addressing himself to one of the patriarchs.3 to Jacob). the God of the patriarch (Jacob) presents himself as "?«n. Accordingly. In 46. 29. and does not take up a topic already at hand there.10).10 (Eng. the inevitable conclusion: the Moses tradition has been reworked and interpreted from entirely different points of view than the patriarchal stories. and that likewise almost entirely in connection with statements about the guidance of Jacob by YHWH (31. says. further Exod. within which the author or redactor wants the questions to be understood.2 It is of particular importance to have established that there are here other questions than those in the patriarchal stories which are determinative. 28. talk of the God of the fathers.24 to Isaac.2. 2 Cf. The Patriarchal Stories 89 or fathers occurs once in connection with the promise of the land to Jacob (Gen. in the Jacob story there is. rather it looks back to the patriarchal stories with a different formulation of the question.7) and with the first mention of the land into which YHWH will lead the Israelites (3. talk of the God of the fathers has acquired a new function which it did not have in the patriarchal stories. 42.5 (beginning).4. ..3. and Jacob.13)1 and twice in connection with the formula 'Fear not' together with an assurance of guidance (26. this reference back to the patriarchal stories is not something that arose out of the stories themselves.

31 has clearly several functions: first. 192-93 = pp. the methodological criteria would have to be worked out. the basic element of the divine addresses does not appear in the Moses tradition. also S.583. 582-83. they bow down in worship. EvTh 31 (1971) 579-88 = Gesammelte Studien zum Alien Testament 2. Von Rad has indicated briefly1 that one can scarcely speak of stories (Sagen) in the proper sense in the Moses-tradition.1. 192 = p. 3 Op. This trait occurs again later when the proclamation is made to the Israelites of their definitive rescue by the slaying of the firstborn and of their own preservation (12. 'the tight inner coherence of the narrative in Ex 1-14'4 is striking.5 Just a few remarks may now be made on the composition of the Moses narratives.2325 mark the decisive turning point: God hears the cry of the oppressed Israelites and takes heed of it. as we have tried to do for the patriarchal stories. cit. cit. 2 Op. Now they experience this themselves. First. 193 = p. the statement of the "belief of the Israelites is taken up by way of conclusion in 14.27b). it brings to a close the question whether the Israelites will "believe' Moses 4. . Finally. 5 Cf. The verses 2. 326). p. as we have seen. (p.. but on the Israelites 1 'Beobachtungen an der Moseerzahlung Exodus 1-14'.90 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 2. pp. The conclusion in 4.. and they would have to be quite different because. cit. 9): 'the people believed'.. 1973. 18998.31. the presuppositions are essentially other.3 In contrast. 4 Op. Iff. 8. pp. p. EvTh 28 (1968) 301-28. And more. by and large. Their belief is no longer based merely on the proclamation of rescue by Moses. 582. of 'developed narrative units'.6 The 'larger units' in Exodus-Numbers It would be beyond the bounds of this study were we to advance as well proof of the interpretation and reworking that runs through the Moses tradition. Hermann. 'Mose'.2 This is in accord with the absence. rather we have to do at most with 'motifs' (Sagenmotiven). then it takes up the statement that God 'saw' (2. who speaks of a 'tighter arrangement of events' with regard to Exod.25) the Israelites and their distress. 5. It is clear that Exodus 1—4 has been composed as a relatively self-contained unit.

'Die Herausfuhrungsformel—Zum Verhaltnis von Formel und Syntax'. comes the broad reference to the promises to the patriarchs (v. who brought us out of the land of Egypt' (w. p. W. 12 the verb (Hip'il) is used instead of (hip'il). Exod.7. . attached to this. cf. On the problem of the difference between these two verbs in the 'formula of leading out'. It is only in v. No particular demonstration is needed to show that the Sinai passage is an independent larger unit. 4. ZAW 86 (1974) 425-53. One can discern then a clear connection between the composition of Exodus 1-4 and the overall composition of Exodus 1—14. von Rad.1-3 is interesting. 7). II). 12 that this reference back to the leading out from Egypt is used as an argument: 'Why let the Egyptians say: He had evil intent when he led them out. 32. it is a matter throughout of fixed and formalized formulas which on each occasion have been joined by as relative sentences for further precision.4 Finally..2 The introductory divine address runs: *You have seen what I did to Egypt and how I carried you on eagles' wings and brought you here to me' (Exod. 33. cit. The Israelites say: 'As for this fellow Moses. There is only a very general reference here to the event of the Exodus.4). 8). go on from here. Moses uses the same formulation about YHWH (v. YHWH commands Moses to set out with the words: 'Up.1 But these questions must be pursued further. 198 = p. The references in Exodus 32 are more concrete. Express cross references to the preceding complexes of tradition occur only in isolation. you and your people whom you have brought out of the land of Egypt'. the situation in Exod. Here.5 The link with the promises to the patriarchs 1 Cf. 19. Israel. 5 Cf. that brought you out from Egypt' (w. 13).2. 3 Here and in v. 4 See above under 2. 23). 588. Gross. 2 Account is not taken here of references which occur within the legal material and the uncontestably priestly layer of the Sinai passage. op. to kill them on the mountains and to wipe them from the face of the earth?' Then. The Patriarchal Stories 91 having 'seen' what YHWH has done. the people you brought out from the land of Egypt' (v.5. YHWH says to Moses: 'your people. 3 of the image of the golden calf they say: 'these are your gods. 1.

14. enumerating them in almost the same terms as in Exod. w. 16. 20. only the sequence 'Amorites. It must be said that in general. dangerous situation in the desert and the comparatively much better position in Egypt. 17.8. it is spoken of in the same way as we have known it from the beginning of the Moses narrative. 3 On the question whether ch. see above under 1.8.2 The passage is characterized by a striking mingling of traditions. this holds too for the references to the patriarchal story.6.4-5. and so bring to the fore the accusations against Moses (and Aaron) (Exod. primarily. to set in relief the contrast between the present.3 [cf. 20. So one can say no more than that knowledge of the fact of the leading out from the fertile land of Egypt was a presupposition for the origin and development of the theme of the 'murmuring1 of 1 See above under 2. and Jacob: to your seed will I give it'. Num.3. the content of these texts shows no further connections with the traditions about the leading out from Egypt. and with that striking absence of any connection with the patriarchal story. Its function is. 21." . One rather gets the impression that the tradition of the 'murmuring' of the Israelites contained this element right from the beginning.92 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch follows immediately on this reference back to the leading out from Egypt: 'to the land of which I swore to Abraham. The land is described as 'the land that flows with milk and honey' (v.2-4. 3. 16. 3. This does not in any way mean that the two complexes of tradition must have been related to each other originally.4.13. 11. the leading out from Egypt is mentioned often in connection with the 'murmuring' of the people. Isaac.5. Hittites' is the reverse of Exod. Apart from the mere reference back to the better situation in Egypt.1 Then. and YHWH announces the expulsion of the nations living there. In the narratives about Israel's stay in the desert. 18. there is more about the land into which Moses is to lead the Israelites. 2 Verse 2. It is clearly something more than mere passing references or after-thoughts.5. reference to the exodus tradition occurs only in isolation in the Sinai pericope and that it plays no role in the central passages of this larger unit.53). 32]. 3). 21 belongs to the desert or occupation of the land tradition.

In the narratives of the occupation of the land in the book of Numbers. whereas its real significance as a historical and saving action of YHWH for Israel is scarcely mentioned. The Patriarchal Stories 93 the Israelites. The narratives of Israel's stay in the desert have not. Num. at the same time been a notable shift of emphasis. the leading out from Egypt is mentioned 1 On the other hand. cf. Moses sends a message to the king of Moab at the very beginning in which a brief survey of the history of Israel is given. . as well as Exod. as a whole. 16.8. 14 with reference to the 'ill-treatment' that 'befell' the Israelites. There has. But it is just this rare mention of the patriarchs that makes us aware yet again that there has been no far-reaching connection between the different complexes of tradition. 19. 16a). In both cases the reference is to the 'oath' that YHWH swore to the patriarchs that he would give them the land (Num. 22.23). It is scarcely possible to glean from the texts that the leading out was a saving action of YHWH for Israel. 18. and hence. been brought into an inner harmony with the traditions preceding them. 20. The reference to the leading out from Egypt serves only as a contrast to the present situation. 11.1 There are only two places in this complex of tradition where there are references to the patriarchal stories.6. and he heard our voice and sent an angel and led us out from Egypt' (Num. it recalls the 'credo' formulations which we find in other places: 'Our fathers went down into Egypt and we lived there for a long time. The first occurs without any links within an address of Moses to YHWH.13. Exod. that in a limited sense. 2 Moses' message opens in v.2. so resuming a formulation already used in Exod. 18. 14. the 'signs' which he had done in Egypt and in the desert (!) are referred to (Num. And it is striking that the complex of narratives of Israel's stay in the desert manifests no over-arching reworking which joins it in a positive way with the narratives of the leading out.2 Here. The second combines the traditions: immediately before. 14. there is some dependence in the process of the formation of the tradition. in an address of YHWH.22). 14.15. however. The Egyptians treated us and our fathers badly.12. Then we cried out to YHWH.

11). it evokes no association at all with the patriarchs of whom Genesis speaks.. 32. are to see the land which I swore to Abraham. 2. however. The relationship to the different traditions is clearly quite disjointed in this chapter. where the leading out from Egypt is mentioned: in Num. introductions to lists. But here too.. one cannot speak of any real connection with the larger units of tradition that have preceded. These are mentioned explicitly within the same context and by name: 'None of the men who came up out of Egypt.94 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch together with the history that preceded it. the passage speaks of an angel and not of Moses. 14 the generation of the desert is described as 'fathers' in distinction from the generation that is to occupy the land and is addressed there. there are two further places. The cross references. 26.8. In Num. and in Num. Finally.4 the lists of the tribes and clans is introduced: 'These are the Israelites who came out from Egypt'. This passage joins together the traditions of the promise of the land to the patriarchs and of the leading out from Egypt. in the context of the leading out from Egypt. which appear everywhere. making any concrete narrative connection.1 the list of stopping places during the wandering in the desert begins: 'These are the camping places of the Israelites who came out from the land of Egypt (ordered) according to their tribal hosts'. Jacob. And so only isolated references to the exodus tradition and to the patriarchal stories occur in this context. and Isaac' (32. In both cases it is a question of a formalized ordering which is aware of the tradition of the leading out of Egypt as a general background without. And further. do not as a rule belong to the real narrative substance of the individual units. But no comprehensive reworking which shapes the whole into a unit is immediately .7 Traces of an over-arching reworking Our review of the larger units of tradition within the Pentateuch has shown that each is very independent and self-contained in respect to the others. The notion of 'fathers' has shifted. though there is nothing more precise as to who is meant by the 'fathers' who went down into Egypt. 33.

15.3. would be in no wise discernible.24 anticipates the exodus story. 50. But this theological intent is not discernible in the same way for the Pentateuch as a whole. show a very thorough reworking in which a theological intent arranging them was clearly at work. This does not mean. that an over-arching reworking of the Pentateuch. In other words: the theological arrangement of the patriarchal stories is not to be equated with the theological arrangement of the Pentateuch. It is noteworthy that the mention of YHWH's oath in 22. Gen. see also Exod. Lohfink. the patriarchal stories have undergone a theological interpretation and reworking which has turned them into a self-contained piece of well moulded tradition which stands out clearly in all its own independence within the Pentateuch. Further studies in the direction indicated will be hard put to it to alter the judgment that the theological arrangement of the individual larger units within the Pentateuch cannot be equated with the arrangement of the Pentateuch as a whole.2. Die Landverheissung als Eid. The Patriarchal Stories 95 evident. 2 See below. It appears. Isaac. 22. Gen.2 here. which encompasses the different larger units. YHWH's address (i. they are all concerned with one thing—that YHWH swore to the patriarchs that he would give the land to them.16. in two texts which are important for the composition of the patriarchal story as a whole. Among the cross-references mentioned. 1967.e. 3. however. . but it has already become quite obvious that it will have to be of a different kind from that of the patriarchal stories. through the mal'ak 1 For . however.16 does not appear in a fixed formula as in the majority of other cases. The reworking and arrangement of the remaining units requires still more careful study. p.16. Talk of YHWH's oath is not very deeply anchored in the patriarchal stories. 26. cf. Rather. also N. 4. Joseph says to his brothers: 'God will come to you1 and will lead you out of this land into the land that he swore to give to Abraham. This is all the more striking because the patriarchal stories which we have examined closely as examples. and Jacob'. there emerges one particular group of texts to which we must give somewhat more careful attention.31.

2 The words 'I will fulfil the oath that I swore to your father Abraham'. Jer.24.18. 22.).16 is the only attestation of in the book of Genesis. 50. The passage of course is linked with 22. there is talk of YHWH's oath.17. the content of the oath is the promise of blessing and the increase of descendants and finally the assurance: 'your seed will possess the gate of their enemies'. it is followed immediately by the promise of increase and the image of the stars in the sky which appears only here and in 22. One can see here a step in the direction of the formulation in Gen. 14. Finally. a fourth passage needs to be mentioned.7. It occurs in the context of a narrative which is relatively late. The passage about the oath is framed by the double promise of the land (w.5. 50. 24. 1 .1 The reason for this is then given.3.. The formulation is close to that in Gen. linked with (as in Isa.4. 22.. 2 See above under 2. We can only conclude that in this passage..28. but without any connection with the promise of the land. who spoke to me and swore to me: to your seed will I give this land'. 50. 3b and 4a ). But what is most important is that it has the function of a transition piece in the place in which it stands. can refer only to 22. The formulation of Gen. the God of heaven .24.96 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch YHWH) is introduced by the phrase: *By my own self I swear*. and which has obviously been added subsequently to the body of the Abraham stories. where there is a clear connection between YHWH's oath and the promise of the land: *YHWH. Gen. so important for the composition of the Abraham story as a whole. and appears again only in Num. 49. The situation is not entirely clear in 26. elsewhere only in Jer. 22. namely Abraham's comportment in the preceding story of the offering of Isaac. It belongs to another context in the tradition in which the oath by which YHWH confirmed the promise of the land to the fathers finds its natural place.16. It joins the patriarchal story to the following traditions.24. and 11 x in Ezek. One can scarcely see here a connection with the promise of the land where the formulations are quite different.24 therefore has not developed immediately out of the Abraham story as it lies before us. and Lev.16 in the process of formation of the tradition. Gen. it is completely absent from Exod.

The formulation therefore presupposes both traditions. 13) in the prescriptions about the unleavened bread.19) with express reference back to Gen. is not present in the two units of tradition themselves. The command to Moses to set out is given in Exod. and had to be made. as we have seen. 33. 95 n. It could then very well be that one can detect in the express mention of the promise of the land in this place. 1. Isaac. In v. first occurrence).2. 3-10 about the leading out from Egypt and of the imminent leading into the land promised by YHWH. The next example does not appear. there is much talk in w.25.8. so that what is said reaches far beyond the ambit of ritual prescriptions. is joined with the enumeration of the foreign nations who now occupy it (Exod. depart from here.5. you and the people you have led out from the land of Egypt. As for their function. 13 is concerned in content with the prescriptions about the unleavened bread. at first sight. 50. 50. which. 3. Seen from this point of view. 5. What follows in ch. the oath of YHWH to the patriarchs is mentioned twice (w. and Jacob: to your seed I will give it.1-3a: Then YHWH spoke to Moses: Up.24 is beginning to be fulfilled. an intent directing the composition. . 'which he swore to your fathers to give you'. The Patriarchal Stories 97 in particular to the narrative of the leading out from Egypt. p. namely that what was announced in Gen. In Exodus 13. it is scarcely a surprise that the next important turning point where there is mention of the promise of the land which YHWH swore to the patriarchs is the departure of the Israelites from Sinai. and with the description of it as a land flowing with milk and honey'. each time with explicit reference to the promise of the land. one must remember that the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt has been mentioned immediately beforehand (12. the formalized description of the land. This surmise is confirmed further by the fact that a little later in the same chapter there is talk of Moses carrying the bones of Joseph with him (13.51).1 This then is the obvious place where the link with the last words of Joseph could. therefore. nevertheless. And I will 1 On see above. to give any grounds for thinking that it has a corresponding function in the over-arching composition. to the land which I swore to Abraham. It provides a link.

The links with the oath in Gen. would send his angel before Eliezer. as in Gen. There are some further passages where there is mention of the promise of the land to the patriarchs confirmed by YHWH's oath in situations in which its fulfilment seems to be in danger.1 and I will drive out the Canaanites. After Moses' intervention in Exod. in however concise a form ('the land which you swore to their fathers'). the Perizzites. We find the same traditions joined together here as in Exod. Moses gives expression to his doubts.16-17 are once again clear. 24. besides. at the same time it is said that this journey to the land constitutes the realization of this promise. 2 On (Gen. In the prayer in Num. after a break in the journey by a stop at Sinai. among many other things. . the Hittites. the Amorites. 32. and the Jebusites—to a land flowing with milk and honey'. 32.7. YHWH's oath is mentioned here.10 to annihilate the people. and once again YHWH's oath is recalled in the same concise form (v. 14-15). with the exception of Caleb (14. so Moses intercedes and counters YHWH with his very own promises. 22. These two passages then complement each other.98 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch send an angel before you. In the episode of the scouts in Numbers 13-14 also. 11. where Abraham requests that YHWH. 32. Gen. the promise of the land is again mentioned and confirmed when the journey is resumed.13 is also to be seen in this context.11-14.16). 'the stars of heaven' are mentioned. as the God who made the promise of the land. (It should be expressly noted here that the rest of the story of the scouts has no connection at all with the tradition of 1 Cf.15. the Hivites. in the context of the promise of increase.22-24). 23). 13. 22. with YHWH's express decision in Exod. So then.2 The function of this cross reference at this place could be that. whom he describes.11-15. the realization of the promise is put in question: YHWH declares that not one of the desert generation is to see the promised land. the fulfilment of the promises to the patriarchs would have become impossible. 22.1-3). YHWH himself resumes the promise of the land to the patriarchs in his command to journey on (33. The reference to the promise of the land in the prayer of Moses in Exod. he thinks that he cannot carry out the charge that YHWH has laid upon him to bring the people into the promised land (especially w.

.24: (Exod.1-3a at which the real journey into the promised land begins. 30. 2 N. Lohfink. They appear throughout in their present context as 'post-scripts'. 67. 17-18 with n. The Patriarchal Stories 99 the promise of the land to thw patriarchs. it must be first explored.. 3 J. The land is described as quite unknown.2. Ploger. 445. op.2): "Sich des Landes bemachtigen"?. 2. 33. It has been shown that this reworking has left the texts at hand essentially unchanged and has inserted interpretative additions at definite places. One usually calls the layer of reworking of which we are speaking here 'deuteronomistic' or more recently 'early deuteronomic'2 or 'protodeuteronomic'. 14. esp. cit. but have merely made clear at certain decisive places the guiding point of view under which the whole is to be understood. Finally. that is. cit. they belong to a layer of reworking which has not penetrated into the substance of the narratives themselves. it is a matter of a reworking which in its ideas and language is closely related to Deuteronomy. 50. and the command of YHWH to Moses in Exod. Rupprecht also supports this function for Gen. these words of YHWH are cited again in Num. Hos. and dangerous. 32.1 and at the same time clamp together all Pentateuch traditions under one allembracing theme: YHWH has given the land to the Israelites. p. one can scarcely avoid the impression of a very deliberate intent in the composition and interpretation of the Pentateuch as a whole. that the patriarchs had already lived there for a long time and that YHWH had promised them possession of it—of all this.3 In any case. It 1 K. strange. op.11 (with variations in the wording) when Moses sees the final realization of the promise of the land endangered by the desire of the tribes of Reuben and Gad to settle east of the Jordan When one surveys the attestations advanced in the context.23!]).. Two passages are of particular importance for the composition as a whole: the announcement by Joseph in Gen. 50.10.24 that YHWH will bring the Israelites back into the land promised to the patriarchs. Both passages join the patriarchal stories with the traditions which tell of the journey of the Israelites from Egypt back into the promised land. there is not a word [except in Num. pp. ZAW 82 (1970) 442-46. 1.

100 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch presupposes therefore the present text more or less in the form in which it lies before us. .

apart from this reworking with its deuteronomic stamp. Do the pentateuchal 'sources' stand as complete representations of the pentateuchal material between the arrangement of the individual larger units and the synthesizing reworking in the deuteronomic style? Following the methodological criteria established earlier. At the same time.Chapter 3 CRITICISM OF PENTATEUCHAL CRITICISM The question now arises whether. . and their interest in the most precise understanding of the nature and theological purposes of the individual written sources seems undisturbed. larger units of the tradition had already been brought together as a whole in an earlier stage in the process of the formation of the tradition. the individual. And so it commends itself to take a closer look at the present state of pentateuchal study so as to establish the actual extent of the agreement and to examine the persuasive force of the arguments.3. right up to its present and final stage. this is the place to ask if this assumption is justified. recent pentateuchal research puts the question of the 'sources' in the sense of the documentary hypothesis. such 'sources' would have to find their justification in the course of the study of the process of the development of the text from the smallest units. Current international study of the Pentateuch presents at first glance a picture of complete unanimity. across the larger literary complexes. 1 See above under 1.1 Hence. The overwhelming majority of scholars in almost all countries where scholarly study of the Old Testament is pursued. take the documentary hypothesis as the virtually uncontested point of departure for their work.

1 The present state of pentateuchal criticism One reads in the latest German 'Introduction to the Old Testament' by Otto Kaiser: 'The sources are. 3 E. The sources are. however. the number of scholars who reckon with only 'one' Yahwist seems to be considerably greater than those who support a 1 Einleitung in das Alte Testament. English. 48. 1975). not yet finally explained. accepted by Kaiser and many others. contains a parenthesis. 1964 (3rd edn) English. prescinding from the problem. p.102 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 3. English version of Introduction to the Old Testament. and the author obviously wants it to be understood as such. The sentence. 1970) trans. Einleitung in das Alte Testament. and calls the second of them the 'nomad source'. namely that the texts which Kaiser and others claim for the Yahwist are to be divided into two sources. the Yahwist. 1970 (2nd edn). 5. 4 Einleitung in das Alte Testament. Sellin-G. i. on the whole definitively separated'. comprehensive 'Introduction' by Otto Eissfeldt. 44. actually exist or must two sources in fact be accepted in its place.. 1969. . 1969 (llth edn). Fohrer.4 he likewise divides the Tahwist'. David Green.. Introduction to the Old Testament (London: SPCK. of a first and second Yahwist.3 Fohrer represents the view noted in the parenthesis. 5th edn. One can certainly object that the impression aroused by this chance situation on the German book market does not correspond with the actual state of Old Testament scholarship.2 The reader must pause here: Is the question. 107 n. after all. of the theological significance of the Yahwist depend on it? There is. does the chief source of the Pentateuch. the 3rd edition of which is not much older than the two mentioned. discussed earlier. There is also the standard. so unimportant that one can 'prescind' from it without calling into question the judgment that the sources have been 'definitively' separated? Must not rather the whole question. p. on the whole definitively separated. 2 Emphasis added. but calls the second source the 'lay course'. see below p.'1 This sounds like the final result of a long development. completely revised and rewritten.e. 1984. circulating in German and contemporaneous with Kaiser's book an 'Introduction' by Georg Fohrer. 1970 edn (and incorporating further revisions by the author to 1973 (Oxford: Blackwell.

pp. though he prefers to speak of 'source-layers' rather than of 'sources'. The reason for this is obviously that the methods acknowledged by and large by all scholars are simply not suited to answer conclusively the questions thrown up by the texts of the Pentateuch. p. 124-25. 23. 5 Exodus. Introduction. 4 Fohrsr. from the time that Wellhausen formulated the now widely accepted documentary hypothesis. 91ff. as Eissfeldt puts it: the latest documentary hypothesis'. German edn. See op. Wolff. the first fascicule of which appeared in 1974. Schmidt cites C. cit. . 'The Elohistic Fragments in the Pentateuch' in Interpretation 26 (1972) 158-73. This situation carries all the more weight as the representatives of this view have throughout been constant and convinced advocates of the principles of some division in the sense of the 'later documentary hypothesis'1 or. Kaiser. Criticism of Pentaieuchal Criticism 103 division.9. 190 = p. while others on the contrary maintain that it once existed as an independent work. Steuer1 Fohrer is one of these. with the appropriate adaptations. 3 So H. But one cannot thereby get rid of the fact that. there have been distinguished scholars who have constantly supported the division of this oldest pentateuchal source. pp. 2 German edn.2 One must say then that in one decisive and basic question. Schmidt.W. 223-24.4 Here too the methodology used is inadequate to arrive at a final explanation. Introduction. The same holds. but is preserved only in fragments (so that it is better to speak of 'elohistic fragments'). source criticism has not led to a definitive conclusion. par. Von Rad also speaks of 'elohistic fragments' and states: 'what presents itself as elohistic material cannot be described as a work which really runs parallel to the Yahwist'. 580.H. 1974. p. pp. The situation is still more complex here inasmuch as not a few scholars contest the existence of an independent 'elohistic' source. great uncertainty dominates the separation of these two or three sources.5 When considering the first part of the book. for the 'Elohist'.3. 152.. As an example. As a consequence. 3 still others think that one should consider the 'Elohist' 'as an originally independent and for the most part preserved source layer'. one may cite the most recent commentary on the book of Exodus by W.

p. Willis from Swedish.3 But further. trans.T. 2 Op. 5 Fohrer. amounts to a complete dissolution of the entire system by the very scholars who defend it' (Critical Essays on the Old Testament. The two are bound together inseparably'. p. It is certainly true that there is broad agreement in working out a layer of tradition within the Pentateuch which.1 Schmidt observes that this characterizes 'the state of research into the book of Exodus which remains basically unaltered up to the present da/. 1970.104 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch nagel who wrote: 'Complete certainty has been reached in separating out P.6 Noth represents an opinion which is the complete opposite of 1 Lehrbuch der Einleitung in das Alte Testament. so that what is said 'claims only a limited degree of probability' or that 'one has to renounce completely any separation of J and E as too uncertain!' Can one really say that the sources 'are definitively separated?' In face of the actual situation. 3 I. The survey that follows therefore claims only a limited degree of probability..5 He writes: 'A characteristic of the content of P is the tight link between historical narrative and law. cit. the development of the literary-critical approach in the period following Wellhausen's classical formulation . On the contrary. 1912.. cit. 4 Op. 59. the statement of Steuernagel cited by Schmidt about the 'complete certainty' that has been reached in separating out the 'priestly writing' holds only with considerable limitations.. 183 . Fohrer gathers together almost all the material in the Pentateuch described as priestly and understands it as one coherent source layer which he describes as a literary composition'. p. p. cit. 183 6 Op. 146. and many a time one has to renounce completely any separation of J and E as too uncertain'. pp. Engnell has expressed in withering words how this situation is to be judged: 'In reality.4 But there are basic differences of opinion when it comes to determining further the nature of this layer and establishing its intent. there is often great uncertainty in separating J from E.2 Nothing essential then has changed in this uncertainty for half a century. one can only describe such a statement as wishful thinking. p. cit. 8.. J.. 53). op.. in style and content. can be described as 'priestly'. Even so passionate an opponent of classical source criticism as Engnell acknowledges this.

cit.3. He wants to separate the legal components completely from the narrative. cit. very different answers are given to the question. one can scarcely maintain that the symbol T' really means the same in both cases. However. each provided with yet another letter qualifying P. the literature offers a veritable host of designations for these legal parts. though with some further precision. 2 Op. The most popular view distinguishes a *basic narrative' or the like (Pg) from parts added later (P8. One must prescind entirely from these passages when dealing with the P narrative'. n. p.. p. 4 Op. Between these two extreme positions there is an abundance of attempts to make distinctions within the P material. of course. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 105 this. 10. what is to be understood under T8>. p. 10.2 belongs to this source or layer. there can be no talk at all of unanimity here. 10 3 Op. p.4 For the rest. This means at the same time that there are fundamentally different opinions in the question of the relationship to each other of the historical narrative and the legal sections of P. s = secondary). Hence. He even goes so far as to reject utterly the designation *F for the legal parts.. can be assigned to P 'with broad unanimity'. 103. by necessity also a variety of views on the nature and intent of this source or layer. which legal texts are to be regarded as original constituent parts of the 'priestly writing* and.3 while Kaiser wants to use it for the legislative material' which has been attached secondarily to the basic narrative. Faced with this.. There is a variety of views on the question. Noth will have the symbol used only for additions to the P-narrative. cit.1 This can only mean that Noth contests that a notable amount of material which. A survey of the present state of pentateuchal study leads to the conclusion that adherents to the documentary hypothesis generally acknowledge only two things. because in his opinion it 'signifies at the least a misrepresentation leading to error when one includes them in the concept of P and labels them with something like P8. 1 A History. 15. in Fohrer's opinion. . They should be given some sort of neutral sign.

e. that these two hypotheses have had virtually no support since the middle of the 19th century. i. no agreement as to its more precise purpose nor as to which texts are to be assigned to its basic content. is far less unanimous than is often maintained. there is a priestly layer in the Pentateuch. the other hypotheses proposed in the course of the 19th century have receded into the background: the 'fragmentary hypothesis'. 1893. but since the end of the previous century. 791. Pentateuchal research. but nogreement as to their number. In face of this. There have certainly been new positions in addition. Gazelles. the 'documentary hypothesis' has been supported almost exclusively. Schmidt has noted. but only with individual. quoted by H. more or less extensive. and the 'complementary hypothesis'. see also the statement of von Hiigfi from the year 1897 on 'the unanimity in general and in deta T in the separation of sources. . and a glance over its history shows that it was ever so.106 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 1. (2) Since Wellhausen. there is. which reckons not with sources extending from the beginning to the end of the Pentateuch. 1966. Most of the positions assembled by H. there is. Tentateuque'. There has been no essential change in the arguments and counter-arguments for the delimitation of the sources not O0nly since 1912. i. according to which there was one basic document which was complemented by all sorts of other material. it is accepted that the Pentateuch is assembled from several continuous 'documents' or 'sources'. long before Wellhausen. 2. and their relationship to each other.e. but looking across the broad spectrum of current OT scholarship. however.H. and certain scholars or groups of scholars have shifted the emphasis in their statement of the question. What is often presented as the 'triumph' of the documentary hypothesis since Wellhausen is basically but two things: (1) since then. there still remains a variety of different opinions. the 'priestly document' has normally been regarded as the latest of the pentateuchal sources. however. as W. DBS. their delimitation. Holzinger1 in 1893 are still represented today by individual exegetes. fragments. the 1 Einleitung in das Hexateuch. in fact. besides. one or several more sources or layers. therefore. VII. One must add. col.

There is an increasing number of voices today which question the apparent consensus or doubt whether it exists at all.E. Wagner presented his views: "Pentateuchal Criticism: No Clear Future"'. 5 'Die alttestamentliche Wissensehaft'. 1981.. 1974. dt. Cassuto. in Wissenschaftlicht Theologie im Uberblick. 13-19(15). I. esp.. p. 153ff. it has only been contested by outsider—though still with the limitations already mentioned with regard to the extent and purpose of the priestly document.. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism s 107 Eeuss-Graf-Kuenen~Wellhausen-hypothesis' has prevailed to such an extent that. and has added the Elohist by way of complement only to a limited extent.4 O.. 3 BibThB 2 (1972) 3-24. This is because lie sees that the very question which he himself felt to be central.t pp. sections III. ed. has taken the narrative material in essence from the Yahwist. The Documentary Hypothesis and the Composition of the Pentateuch. thus. The Religion of Israel from the Beginnings to the Babylonian Exile. W. which necessarily has repercussions on the theological analysis'. 3 Caselles then speaks of the 'present malaise in pentateuehal criticism. Many critics have expressed the view that Moth's conception amounts to a new complementary hypothesis: he does not reckon with a redactor who accepts more or less on an equal footing the original independent sources. and Conclusion. esp. since then. LohfET. 106 a. Others go farther. trans. 4 Ibid. 1. Haha. is still open: The works produced in the last ten years cm (the sources of the Pentateuch) have at the very least shown clearly that the problem of the unity and specific nature of the Yahwist cannot be regarded as solved'. 1960. Moth has in fact renounced to a very large extent complete reconstruction of the original sources which as a whole exist only in the theory of his system. Kaiser maintains that pentateuchal research is really on the move again. Creenberg from Hebrew. pp. Let us cite only such a brilliant interpreter of pentateuchal research as H. 2 See above p.SOff.5 As an example of the younger German 1 E.. . Engnell.. but assumes that the redactor has used the priestly document as a frame.g. pp. Kaufmann. U. op. namely concerning the Yahwist. Y. M.. IV. and abr. Gazelles^ who wrote not so long ago: 'The present state would justify the title under which N. 9.3.

i.2 The problem of the Yahwist It is certainly no chance that in the citations given so far the talk concerns mainly the Yahwist and that the lack of clarity in regard to this source has been felt to be particularly disturbing. essential parts of the narrative material derive from it.108 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch OT scholars.1 3. hold in fact for all sources: namely.. he writes: With a conception such as this one must. then the hypothesis as a whole can scarcely be maintained.2. p. from the creation right down 1 Das Alte Testament. according to the basic principles of the documentary hypothesis. If this source is no longer clearly discernible. 2 See above under 1. then the current. also the citation above from Gazelles (3.1 Literary analysis of the Yahwist Has the current Pentateuch research a clear picture of the Yahwist? First. If one does not succeed in demonstrating this chief source convincingly. .1 above). In fact. and that for two reasons: (1) the Yahwist is the only older source accepted by all supporters of the documentary hypothesis. 1974.. After assessing the difficulties under which the hypothesis of a *Yahwist' labour today. In any case. 36. the theological meaning of the Pentateuch has to a large extent been built on the interpretation of the Yahwist. (2) More recently. Certain demands must at least be put to the Yahwist which.2 3. judgment about the Yahwist constitutes as it were the key to the whole problem of the documentary hypothesis. Stolz whose writings reflect a widespread view.3 (von Rad's view of the Yahwist). widespread method of explaining the Pentateuch theologically is in danger. to be sure. that it can be demonstrated that it is complete from beginning to end.e. one may cite F. the other sources are dealt with and characterized in comparison with him. let us put the question of the literary analysis. reckon with a Yahwist whose character is as complex as can be imagined. it is in no wise a rounded picture'. To what extent does it see itself in the position to delimit clearly the texts to be ascribed to the Yahwist.

and it only makes sense as an answer to this question. the documentary hypothesis claims to be the best and most convincing (and so. in the last edition of his Genesis commentary. n.3.1 Some exegetes doubt only that several of the narrative sources can be found in this complex and advance arguments that only the Tahwist' is at work here. Rather. Let us call to mind once more a basic methodological principle mentioned earlier: the documentary hypothesis arose as an answer to the question about the literary unity of the text of the Pentateuch as it now stands. Eng. 1967. O. and that the texts attributed to it constitute a clearly recognizable coherent whole. 3. among two. in an extensive block of 1 See above under 1. and has also traced the path from them to the present final form. Die Landnahme der israelitischen Stamme in der neuren wissenschaftlichen Diskussion. the correct) explanation of the origin of the present form of the text. in the opinion of its subsequent supporters. 440. p. added an appendix in which he took account of these doubts. 92.e. in that it has worked out the earlier constituent parts. inasmuch as there could be the most diverse explanations of this. . three. J and P). Only then can the Yahwist stand as a 'source' in the sense of the documentary hypothesis. 2 Genesis (German 9th edn 1972. namely the 'sources'. the Elohist has no part in the primeval story according to the prevailing view. Cf. VTSupp. J and P (or three: L/N.B. Redford. The rest of Genesis is shared out. according to the respective views. also D. Steck. 20 (1970). Recently. Ein kritischer Bericht. A Study of the Biblical Story of Joseph (Genesis 3750). 37—50). The majority of exegetes reckon with only two sources for the primeval story. 2nd edn 1972) p. But it is not enough to demonstrate the lack of unity in the text. At first glance no particular problems appear to arise in the analysis. voices have increased which doubt if the source theory is applicable to the Joseph story (Gen. Von Rad. namely the 'redaction' What then is the case with the Yahwist as a source running through the whole Pentateuch (or Hexateuch) in the sense of the documentary hypothesis? Let us begin with the book of Genesis. i. or four sources. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 109 to the occupation of the land.2.2 This at least puts a large question mark over the documentary hypothesis as the method which is to explain the whole Pentateuch if.

There is often a twofold problem: (1) the assigning of these pieces to each other. Testaments. 3 Wellhausen had already noted perceptively what the detachment of the Joseph story would mean for the source theory as a whole: The main source for the last section of Genesis is also JE. 82-83.e. cit.? co live contents cohere. . 20. the assignment of texts remains an extremely doubtful matter.3 The difficulties of delimiting the sources in the first half of the m:ck of Exodus have already been mentioned. pp. Accordingly. our earlier results force us to this and would be shattered were it not demonstrable3 (Die Composition des Hexateuchs und der historischen Biicher des Alien. Schmidt in this matter: There is often agreement in registering the tensions. where does it end? Are the transition verses which clamp different units to each other to be assigned to a written source or to the redaction? And so it is often difficult to corne to terms with secondary additions with any certainty. is assembled out of J and E.her from the commentary of W. inserting them into their original context. 6 Cf. Also. 'The Joseph. A History. 2 Redford and ¥/eippert.5 This citation shows that one can establish that a text is not a unity. 52). the tensions and unevennesses which are present in the text have to be explained in another way.4 Let us cite furl. Where does a source really begin. here as elsewhere. 1974./' but that a generation of work has not succeeded in determining which individual passages belong to the different sources. Noth. One surmises that this work. p. but in explaining these unevennesses.H. because this large passage of text drops completely out of the conventional framework of explanation.1 Other exegetes want to go further and contest the presence in the Joseph story of any sources at all in the sense of the documentary hypothesis. axcgetes are more or less divided. 1899 [3rd edn]. breaks. R. i. op.2 This means yet a deeper breach in the validity of the documentary hypothesis. Whybray.110 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch the tradition.Story and Pentateuchal Criticism'.N. and (2) the precise delimitation of the units. After weighing thoroughly all 1 Sfcesk. It is relatively easy to perform the task of sorting out roughly the passages whose r or. VT 18 (1988) 522-28. 5 Exodus. 4 See above under 3. p. and gaps in the text.1.

p. and indeed to several sources at the same time! It is clear that in this way it is very much easier to point out the continuity of the presentation in the different sources. 26.1-10 as follows: Though. J. 2. 2 Uberlieferung und Geschichte des Exodus. unified passages of texts also.1 There is therefore great uncertainty of method in delimiting the sources. even if the redaction has almost completely altered the original text. Nevertheless. namely the question of an explanation of the breaks and repetitions ascertainable in the present text.1964. So for Fohrer.11-22 'presents a narrative which has been moulded almost to a perfect unity from elements of the source layers J. sees himself compelled to assign the texts to one of the accepted sources.3. Exod. one has abandoned the point of departure of classical pentateuchal criticism. in such a procedure. nevertheless they speak more in favour of the Elohist.3 1 Exodus. can be assigned to several sources. which in themselves offer no cause for literary-critical operations. Fohrer solves the problems differently. and by means of an in-built system . though there 'is a preference for the other'. E. Decisive in this is that there are no solid criteria capable of indicating which passages are to be assigned to which sources. assigning it to J remains questionable. 3 It is at the same time clear that. 111 arguments. The available clues 'speak in favour" of one source. 64. Eine Analyse von Ex 1~ 15. there are few concrete clues for assigning the text to any literary source. on the basis of the available source hypothesis. Despite intensive efforts... for example. Wellhausen was rightly reserved in the judgment that he pronounced on Exodus 2: "the separation cannot be carried through"'. and N'. to whom one earlier and without exception assigned the main part. p. Schmidt assigns Exod. Criticism of Pentafouchai Criticism. the preference is for the Yahwist because of general considerations. Recently. even though he has no criteria for doing so.. 2. He is of the opinion that he has at his disposal criteria by which he can assign texts or parts of texts to the individual sources. there has been no success in providing precise data for the continuous course of the Yahwistic narrative thread.2 Therefore. Such statements show clearly that the exegete. by means of them he can often discern elements of the sources.

30.4 'One must renounce any literary critical analysis of Exodus 33.5 And the passage Exod. already within the old pentateuchal material (Exod. 115. . 4 Noth. 6 Op. 31.2 And so the Yahwist would have reported nothing of all this! In the further course of the narrative there are even more and greater difficulties. has not been included in the list. because it seems to Noth Very doubtful whether this piece belongs to any source at all and is not rather some sort of secondary appendix to the book of the covenant'. He considers that the whole passage which deals with Moses' meeting with God and the commission given him to lead the Israelites out of Egypt (Exod. n.. the problems do not become easier.17) as a 'secondary element'. ibid. which seems 'to have been interpolated only secondarily into the work of the Yahwist'. eft. 114. 5 Op. n. 1 A History. cf. namely by concluding that the criteria for source criticism have proved unsuitable to explain the literary problems of the Sinai pericope! Going into detail. 31.3-8. Noth carries out some negative delimitations: the story of the golden calf is 'a secondary element within J.. 24. but also from the literary standpoint'. Perlitt.112 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch If Schmidt and other exegetes find it difficult to point to a Yahwistic narrative in the first two chapters of the book of Exodus. n. which deals with the ceremony of the *blood of the covenant'. by expansions and interpolations. L. 19-24.6 And so there is less and less left over for the Yahwist—and more and more texts disappear from the record by the methods of source divisions! As one proceeds. 115. has. pp.1 in so far as he does not hold it to be elohistic. eft.3 One could also describe this situation in another way. p.2Q3. It seems here to be a matter of a conglomeration of seconda/y growths'. but only verified the hypothetical solution given earlier. p.. been given such a complicated literary arrangement that a plausible analysis is now no longer possible'. 2 Op.. not only in the process of the formation of the tradition. 31. Bundestheologie im Alien Testament. 3. 32-34). n.1-4. 3 Op. n. 156ff. 1969. cit. 103. p.549. Noth maintains that the narrative of the Sinai event. p. cit.p. Noth finds problems in Exodus 3—4.

Noth writes: The very fragile ch. In the last available pieces in Numbers 32. the far reaching consequence of all this has produced a final text so complicated that it is only with the greatest difficulty that one can make out anything certain about the original form of the pentateuchal material in this area'. but rather to that of an unsystematic arrangement of numerous pieces of tradition of very different content. p. In his rehearsing of the Yahwistic work he writes: *We feel our way through the fragments of the Yahwistic narrative. . according to the prevailing view. Numbers. 4.6 As for the 'results of pentateuchal analysis gained elsewhere'. the old pentateuchal sources begin again.5 Nevertheless... age. as already said.5. and considers it 'justified to approach the 4th book of Moses with the results of pentateuchal analysis gained elsewhere and to expect continuous pentateuchal 'sources' in this book as well even if. Ibid. and character ('fragment hypothesis')'. Noth is of the opinion that one should not isolate the book of Numbers. cit. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 113 more difficult. 32f. one should call to mind 1 2 3 4 5 6 Op. Moses appears no more'. n. cit. p.32. Introduction.p..2 In Noth's view then it appears that no information about the death of Moses has been preserved from the old sources!3 Kaiser's judgment is similar. Op.1 And a little later: In the second half of the book of Numbers. pp. p. 89. there has also been a literary working together of the Pentateuch and the deuteronomistic history.. all sorts of supplements have been inserted towards the end of the Moses tradition in the different literary stages. Ibid. Immediately after dealing with the Sinai pericope where.3. 120. I simply give up any attempt to dismember it'. 12 of Numbers is one of the most despairing cases in pentateuchal analysis.4 And Noth himself later sharpened his judgment still further on the possibilities of source division in the book of Numbers: 'If one takes the 4th book of Moses in itself. n. the situation in the 4th book of Moses does not of itself lead at once to these conclusions'. then one would not easily come to the idea of 'continuous sources'. 126.

2 See above under 1. it cannot in any way be said that there is a broad and well founded consensus today among supporters of the documentary hypothesis about the precise course of the Yahwistic work. . and the results have 'often only a limited degree of probability*. The problem area for the understanding of the whole work that arises out of all this may be clarified under two points: (1) the question of the conclusion of the Yahwistic work: von Rad reckons with a Hexateuch because he understands the whole as directed to the occupation of the land. But the citations given here indicate that there is in any case widespread uncertainty. 3 'The Kerygma of the Yahwist'.1 It must remain doubtful if this is a basis from which one can expect 'sources' in the book of Numbers. 5 Op. from Steuernagel to Schmidt. Interpretation 20 (1966) 131-58. 22-24). 4 Ibid. Hence. 'great uncertainty' reigns in the source division in the first part of the book of Exodus. the analyses of Noth must be counted as truly representative of the present day.3 'Hence there should be no cause for surprise when at the end of the Yahwistic work the theme of the occupation of the land does not appear with its special significance and to the extent expected'.4.4 Wolff then is satisfied to conclude the Yahwistic work with the Balaam narrative (Num. 37.114 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch once more that already.5 There is no more talk of the death of Moses.2 Wolff on the other hand does not have these difficulties because for him the once so important theme of the promise of the land has. and in addition.1. with the Yahwist. Noth is in basic agreement. cit. but thinks that the conclusion *has been lost' in the course of the redaction. n.. even if one does not 'renounce completely as too uncertain5 the assignment of texts to particular sources. One must not pass over the fact that there are also exegetes who place more confidence in the trustworthiness of source analysis. Other exegetes manage by passing over the books of Deuteronomy and Joshua and taking the traditions of the occupation of the land in the first 1 See above under 3. been 'contracted to a secondary narrative trait'. even though one cannot discern them there.

Literatur des alien Israel. great uncertainty reigns. p.3.1b-6 to the Yahwist as 'tenant' (DBS VII. 1966. But this is not due to redactional alteration of the text. pp. p. rather: 'How can it be otherwise. n. 127). they want to retain a small bit of 'Hexateuch'. Can one then really say anything reliable about the purpose and goal of this work? (2) A further controversial point which ought be mentioned fis yet another exuniDle is the part "olayed bv the Yahwist in the Sinai periecpe ar-d the question. . Noth has already spoken against this view (A History. 78ff. Smend. 3 A History. 4 Ibid.g. Introduction. 791). 34. also S.5 Noth is clearly of the opinion that the Yahwist too originally had a considerable and discernible share in this central passage. Biblische Zeug"Jsse. 6 Exodus. 31. rather.4 He explains the situation thus: the insertion of different codes of law' have 'disturbed the tight structure of the three narrative sources not inconsiderably' and 'so central an event as the divine manifestation.2 But all in all the question of the end of the Yahwistic work remains undecided and many exegetes leave it aa open question both in itself and for themselves. Noth has maintained that the account cf the events at Sinai 'have been given such a complicated literary arrangement that a plausible analysis is no longer passible5. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 115 chapter of the book of Judges as the conclusion of the Yahwistic work. col. 13. They acknowledge thereby Noth's separation of the book of Joshua from the Pentateuch. 115. the making of the covenant. Wolff thinks otherwise: He maintains that the Yahwist is 'taciturn' on the Sinai theme. n. but here too.. pp. 33. Kaiser. and the 'law'-giving has obviously given occasion for all sorts of subsequent expansions and statements'.1 But for these also the difficulty remains that in the Yahwistic work there is no information about the death of Moses. but do not draw the consequences from it.3 He is of the opinion that this is 'thoroughly comprehensible in view of what is narrated here'. p. Many would like to find it in Deuteronomy 34. 2 Gazelles finds the opinion which ascribes Deut.. given as starting point the kerygma (of the Yahwist}? The nations which 1 E. what is the significance of the Sinai periocope for him. 86-87. 1967.

1969. themes which for Wolff have no further independent significance.4 There are still further opinions in the different monographs on the theology of the Yahwist. Zwei Glaubenszeugnisse des Alien Testaments. because it was already there before him. p. the selection of which can only be more or less random. 34-57 (50).. The Form-critical Problem'.116 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch preoccupied him in the primeval story.5 P. Ellis writes: The Sinai covenant may rightly be termed the climax of the Yahwist's saga'. pp. 5 Jahwist und Priesterschrift. have no place at all in the Sinai theme. 1969.F. cit.6 These examples are cited merely to show how broad are the differences of opinion as to which themes in the tradition are 1 2 3 4 'The Kerygma of the Yahwist'. in De Mart a Qumr&n.1 And so Wolffs conception of the Yahwistic work allows no significance worth mentioning to the Sinai theme. By taking to itself the Sinai tradition. Von Rad has emphasized that the 'inset of the Sinai tradition' was one of the decisive theological accomplishments of the Yahwist. on whose account the patriarchal theme was so fruitful for him. It was 'a free and daring act of the Yahwist' and signifies theologically 'a considerable enrichment'. According to Marie—Louise Henry 'the Yahwist makes the event at Sinai the climax of his presentation'. both themes are at the very centre of the theological conception of the Yahwist.2 The tradition of the occupation of the land attests Yahweh's merciful will. 1969. 'Positions actuelles dans l'ex£gese du Pentateuque'. Gazelles says of the Sinai theme: the Yahwist 'knows the Sinai [theme] and is more interested in it than one thinks'. 181.3 For von Rad. 53-54. 6 The Yahwist. in the centre of the Sinai tradition stands Yahweh's will that demands justice. Op. The Bible's First Theologian. . having grown up together with the other themes'. the simple and basic soteriological idea of the tradition of the occupation of the land acquired a powerful and beneficial substructure'. 19. and whom he saw both in the Joseph story and then in the exodus tradition in the form of the shackling might of Egypt. 53-54. Over against this there should be set other opinions. p. Festschrift J. He could not of course by-pass it. Coppens. pp. 1. pp.

It is generally emphasized that the language of the priestly document is clearly recognizable.6 Here the argument from different linguistic 1 2 3 4 Einleitung in den Hexateuch. confusion begins.45. cit. likewise for (T)' and) P.3 Since then. cit. 93 (emphasis in original). A classical example of this are the tables of 'linguistic characteristics' of the sources in Holzinger's Introduction. also A.. One reads: 'One can speak of a characteristic Lexikon oftT. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 117 to be regarded as specifically and characteristically Yahwistic. Synopse.1 1 There follow no less than fourteen pages of Yahwistic vocabulary. 5. 1959 (5th edn). 6 Introduction. There is a corresponding 'Lexikon' of E (9 pages). all that is left is that the slave woman is called in the J-layer and in the Elayer. 1922 = 1962 (2nd edn). Introduction to the Old Testament. 183. and notes. by another to E. but little has remained from Holzinger's comprehensive lists. But as soon as one comes to refinements. p. 181-89. Hexateuch. argument by means of differences in linguistic usage has receded completely into the background.. Eissfeldt writes: *Even for J and E a whole list of statements have been made which are of permanent value.4 He therefore gives place to the argument of the frequent occurrence of narratives.2 again with further details on grammar and style.3. 29. Bentzen. each time on the basis of language'. and tries.5 But in his Introduction he again advanced the argument from linguistic usage. . but the probative value of this is reduced when the slave woman serving the man' (and only she is in question in the alleged proofs!) is described as well in the J-layer as 'concubine' . p. Op. pp. 5 Op.. 11. 'in the current abandonment of other arguments to make use of this one alone to solve the problems of the Hexateuch'. pp. The same narrative is not infrequently assigned by one author to J. apart from the distinction 'Canaanites/Amorites' and 'Sinai/Horeb'. p. then some more on grammar and style. 5.339-48. Older generations applied much ingenuity to working out the linguistic peculiarities of the penta-(hexa-) teuchal sources. cit. narrative motifs. 1893. p. 283-90. pp. The uncertainty becomes still greater when it is a question of the marks that characterize the Yahwist's way of presentation and style. Op.

7 Reference to tables in older literature without con1 Introduction. also F. 93. 6 Cf. however. 1913) and Steuernagel (1912). closer attention shov/s only faint traces of synonyms and synonymous phrases whose variable use can with any probability be traced back to a difference in writers who have given the material its formulation as handed down. 4 A History. he does not produce any examples but refers merely to the tables in Driver (1891. 104 n.6 it can only be due to the principle of inertia that this argument is still used at all. Stolz. 1) pp. arguments are often taken over and repeated on the basis of a general. these arguments scarcely carry conviction and the individual exegete has scarcely been able to substantiate them with concrete content. 1974.. 21. persons. doubts whether these arguments carry any weight at all: The study of language and style in itself is of scarcely any decisive help in the analysis of the Pentateuch material. objects etc. but only to state that the consensus consists only in a basic conviction. 3 Introduction. Das alte Testament. 233-34.2 Kaiser refers to Holzinger (1912) and mentions a few examples. and these words and phrases occur too seldom to be of any real service in classifying the material as a whole'.118 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch usage is reduced to a tiny crumb. 2 Whether the summary details given by Steuernagel in his Lehrbuch—4see above under p. 7 And this all the more so in view of A. is not due to chance but coheres with other distinguishing marks'. p. 5 The German word used is 'diffus'. p. but in detail cannot be more sharply defined. must be questionable. 203. Fohrer speaks confidently: The linguistic usage is different in the individual source layers. p. 'Amah ..3 Noth. it is not used in any polemical sense.1 However. however illdefined. 214-15. 115. p. 31. can be described as 'detailed' (so Fohrer).5 consensus about the acknowledgment of the documentary hypothesis.4 One thing becomes very clear from this example: in the present state of pentateuchal study. When the claim that the sources J and E differ from each other in their use of language. Further examination shows that the change in the designation of places. is reduced after all to the statement that there are two (or three!) different designations for the slave woman. Jepsen's discussion. something like Eissfeldt.

IS. what part did the Yahwist and the other older authors of the sources play in the shaping of the texts ascribed to them. 39. It is not a matter of alternatives as opponents of the documentary hypothesis have developed it under the catch cry 'oral tradition'.2.. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 119 crete details about what is considered still valid in them. p. Op. 3. p.4 The matter was rather clear for Gunkel: the origin of the written sources marks at the same time the transition from oral to written tradition. 1 2 3 4 . cif.3.1 Fohrer extended the thesis.. There are various aspects to this question. Since then further intermediary steps have been introduced into the discussion.2 Characteristics of the work of the Yahwist But the real problem goes much deeper: in what way is it possible at all to ask about the distinguishing marks of the Tahwistic style' or the Yahwistic language'? This question is closely linked with the other: in what way is the Yahwist to be regarded as 'narrator* or 'writer'? If one looks for information on this question in recent literature. One generally insists today that the Yahwist's work had a long pre-history. 'G has been worked over in different ways 2 . VT 8 (1958) 293-97: 'It would be far better to exclude the two words and from the arguments for source division'.p. Their committment to and Schiphchah'. p. Introduction.3 But this only makes the question more urgent. The collection of stories had already begun in the oral tradition'. it has something to do with the question of oral and written tradition. Noth in particular has found a large following with his thesis that before the Yahwist and the Elohist there already existed a 'common basis' (G = Grundlage}. First.. 297. one finds a very divided answer. first an older (G1) and then a later (G2)'. so that one must reckon with two basic narratives. serves scarcely more than to function as an alibi. A History. It has been accepted since Gunkel that the individual narratives often existed independently at first before they became parts of larger compositions—and then at some time or other of the Yahwistic work as well.!29.

in his discussion of this whole group of questions. p. as they are found from Genesis to Samuel. pp.. See above under 1.2 Fohrer's judgment is similar: 'In accordance with the literary promises available to Israel. 85. and answered differently. and with their committment to writing the living oral transmission by no means came to an end'.5 He surmises that 'the popular narratives.3 Koch. were written down only relatively late. What preceded them? For Gunkel. 128-32. .4 insists that the question of the transition from the oral to the written stage 'must be put anew for each type of literature. Op. took place in a long process in which one can distinguish "two periods". 85. Op. cit.8 There is then only an apparent contradiction to the opinions of Gunkel and Fohrer already cited.. to the older of which we owe "the collections of the Yahwist (J) and the Elohist (E)"'. p. cit. and indeed for each literary unit'. cit. But what about the entity 'G'? Noth leaves the question open 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Genesis. In another place he describes the Yahwist repeatedly as a 'writer' (likewise the Elohist)7 and speaks for example of literary clamps' of which the Yahwist makes use.. the oral tradition was concerned for the most part with individual pieces whereas the written sources of the Pentateuch were without doubt recorded in writing'.120 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch writing 'will have followed at a time which lent itself rather to writers'. cit. The written collection of stories.6 Unfortunately he does not say what he means by 'relatively late' and what consequences are to be drawn from this for the sources of the Pentateuch.. p. Op. Op.1 This was at the same time the end of the oral tradition ^because the fixation in writing will then for its part have contributed to the death of the remains of the oral tradition still existing'. Ixxx.. the formation of the written sources meant the transition from oral to written tradition. 131. Ibid. cit. Op.. The written sources/layers therefore are in essence unanimously considered to be written works. as we have seen. p.

p. 1972. p. from which 'the Yah wist took over. It is frequently noted6 that one should not imagine that an ancient writer like the Yahwist was in any way near as free as a modern writer.lSOt 4 Kaiser.1. .. had a distinct form. the basic outline for his narrative'. the authors of the ancient source layers kept in general and in detail to the tradition that they 1 A History. 229. whereas G2. he was much more strongly bound to what lay before him.1 Kaiser speaks similarly of a 'moulded tradition (G). He insists 'that this common basis for J and E must already have had a fixed form'. pp. Schulte. 74. 5 Differently. Gunkel had already insisted that the stories were taken over by the collectors essentially as they found them.3 Kaiser refers to the suggestions of Kilian and Fritz that the Yahwist may well have had available to him and used a written model for particular complexes of tradition. 84f. p. 2 Introduction. there is a recognizable tendency to give an affirmative answer. Introduction. but continues: *Whether it be that it was fixed in writing or whether it was that in its oral transmission it had acquired a distinct form both in structure and content'. 8 A History. pp. pp.8L 3 Introduction. Despite this agreement with Gunkel. H. see above under 1. 6 For von Rad's view.2 Fohrer is of a different opinion here: 'It is to be presumed that G1 circulated only in oral tradition.. be it oral or written. 39. be it oral or written'. Die Entstehung der Geschichtsschreibung im Alien Israel. 229. 7 Genesis. Ixxxiii.3.5 For the rest.8 And Fohrer very similarly: 'Apart from their individual characteristic. p. Noth rejects G's opinion of the sources as 'schools of narrators'. Noth writes: 'the ancient sources clearly kept substantially to the narrative tradition given to them both as a whole and in detail'.7 meaning here by 'collectors' expressly J and E.4 There is no unanimity therefore on the question whether the Yahwist used written sources which were available to him. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 121 and maintains that it cannot be decided. at the division of the kingdom after the death of Solomon. was probably available in a written version'. Ixxx. however. it is emphasized that the material available.

2 Likewise Fohrer: 'In any case. 2 Genesis. . Ought other standards hold for the Pentateuch? Or can other common and convincing stylistic marks be found which. 1 Introduction. p. 4 Op.p.1 Is there anything then such as a Tahwistic style' or a Tahwistic language'? Gunkel replies affirmatively: 'On the other hand. there are collectors who are far removed from passing on material transmitted without any alteration. in the final written form'.122 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch used'. 143. p. which gives one readily to reflect that all sorts of modes of expression and stylistic characteristics had already been given with the old tradition. 603. p.4 Noth's judgment is more reserved: 'The work of J and E consisted largely in simply giving formulation to the narratives transmitted. rather the very difference in style would be judged as evidence against common authorship. each in the style transmitted. without any attempt to balance the individual narratives. their uniform use of language is a clear sign that the stuff of the stories has passed through the mould'. 3 Introduction.. for one cannot seriously bring together under the common term 'Yahwistic style' texts in the "brief narrative style of Gen.10-20 and texts in the 'detailed' style of Genesis 24—not to speak of the 'novellistic style' of the Joseph story! In any other area of the OT one would regard it as a serious methodological error were an exegete to ascribe such fundamentally different texts to a common author. the source layers rest on the activity of individual writers who show differences in both language and style'. Ixxxv.5 Noth makes the explicit point that 'the brief/detailed narrative style. so that the ancient sources could not have yet become formal. tightly selfcontained. They have allowed the stories to penetrate their being. n. 144 5 A History.. has been preserved. units'. 6 Ibid. 229.3 The shape that the material had taken had already reached such a point 'that the definitive literary version was for the most part subject only to linguistic and stylistic reworking5.6 Thus he has basically denied the existence of a peculiar Yahwistic style. p. cit. 12.

37.. or did he 'mould' them into another form.p. that the documentary hypothesis holds and that consequently everything that is not ascribed to the priestly writing or. 26. cit. Eng 2nd edn) p. there is no unanimity: did the Yahwist not even so much as formulate or remodel the texts passed on. (He) has for the most part been content to pass on what was available to him'. Literatur des alien Israel.2 Smend writes on the question: We must think of the Yahwist as first and foremost a loyal collector of popular tradition. given the fundamental differences in form and style between the individual narratives? If no.6 If one 1 2 3 4 5 Genesis (9th edn German..1 Wolff too insists that the Yahwist is by and large a trustworthy collector who has himself done little by way of redaction to the material transmitted'. 1967. if need be. p. . p. which is not on firm grounds reckoned to another source or layer of reworking. then in what does this stamp consist.5 We have already spoken of a sort of method of subtraction which is used today whereby everything. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 123 despite these fundamental differences.27. The Kerygma'. considered as certain. is ascribed to the Yahwist. to the Elohist.3. how can we know which texts come from the Yahwist or are to be ascribed to him? It is clear that this question only becomes a problem if one does not take as the point of departure the assumption. suggest that one accept a common author? Von Rad has given another answer to this question: 'In the shaping of the individual narratives the Yahwist has perhaps not been beyond a certain hewing of the archaic profile and the chipping of quite distinct and subtle traits'. Exodus.4 And so in this question as well. also W. or did he rework their language and style so that they now bear his own characteristic stamp? If yes. 64.3. must be considered Yahwistic. 136. Schmidt..3 And after a short survey of the course of presentation in the Yahwistic narrative he continues: The Yahwist presents all this while allowing his sources to speak in as trustworthy a manner as possible'. p. Biblische Zeugnisse. 6 See above under 1. Op. I prescind here from the question of the separation of the Yahwist into two sources and from the question of the part of the 'redactors'.

136. But the outline is as a whole independent of this. then one can quite well argue. that the actual work of the Yahwist as a composer has been reduced quite notably. one can understand why the statements on this point in the literature are mostly very vague. now here now there. VII. in which he allows the large blocks of tradition belonging to the preliterary stage to give expression to themselves. The Bible's First Theologian. how does one recognize the work of the Yahwist?—but. 1 Tentateuque'. cols. And what is offered to him. with Noth's qualifications. is left without a concrete answer. 113ff. as with the Sinai tradition. is really nothing else than a description of the 'art form of the stories (Sagen)' as Gunkel had already provided for Genesis. Hence.3 It is quite clear here. in my opinion. inasmuch as he holds the assumptions described above to be not all that certain. there is no reliable evidence here. p. as representations of the variety of styles in the Yahwist. 3 The Kerygma'. sometimes sparsely. and so above all are the contents of the great forecourt known as the primeval story which is generally regarded as his literary accomplishment'. The presentations by Gazelles1 and Ellis2 can serve as recent examples of this. One asks then not. But we have already seen. DBS. on the basis of the variety of forms in the traditions used by him. because we cannot see clearly what was sacrificed when the material was worked together with the Elohist and later with the priestly writing. 1969. However.124 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch accepts this assumption as certain. what does all this mean for the stylistic forms found in the Yahwist—whose literary stock has been fixed beforehand and independently of them? But whoever wants to put the first question. And so Wolff writes: *What the Yahwist himself has to say becomes clearer in his arranging of the material handed on. that the Yahwist likewise disposed of a variety of stylistic forms. as with the patriarchal tradition. in his outline. there does seem to be basic agreement that a quite decisive characteristic of the Yahwist is the way in which he has arranged the material that came to him and that he took over. However. pp. sometimes extensively. 792-93. 1966. 2 The Yahwist. how an argument is maintained. This was the fundamental idea in von Rad's plan. .

8. . 150 (with reference to Weiser).1 He continues further: 'Striking here is the mingling of national (already noted) and universal concepts'. Wolff holds to this idea and underscores it heavily. the arrangement of the larger blocks was the decisive accomplishment of the Yahwist..2. namely 'the contents of the great forecourt known as the primeval story*. and that of the arrangement of the great blocks of tradition there remains peculiar to him what 'is generally regarded as his (the Yahwist's) literary accomplishment'.3) are taken predominantly. while in this 'arranging the material passed on'. p. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 125 although it has lost its essential basis and thereby its power of conviction: for von Had.p.21 and (without explicit citation) Gen. often almost exclusively. According to Kaiser the Yahwist has 'in the traditions available to him undoubtedly moved the action of Yahweh firmly into the foreground'. and how 'history' (Geschichte) is shaped out of individual stories (Geschichten). see below under 3. Another characteristic mark of the present discussion is in evidence here: the arguments for identifying the Yahwist (for his theology.3. This is shown both by the structure of the whole which is expanded around the primeval story and by the special emphasis given by J'. 84.3 (The other nations can and so ought to share in its blessing?3).!50.2 As proofs are alleged Gen. ci*. from Genesis! It is not mentioned if the 'special emphasis' of J is demonstrable in other places as well. Ibid. The picture is similar with Fohrer. According to Wolffs opinion therefore and in face of the present text—and we have no other!—one can not give concrete details of what this compositorial accomplishment comprises. But Wolff has to qualify this immediately and say in the very next sentence that there is 'no reliable evidence here'. In his view 'it is to be noted to what extent the single event is brought into large complexes and set under over-arching view points. 12. Introduction. the 'self-expression' of the Yahwist becomes very clear.4 It is not said how this is done and to what extent the action of Yahweh was originally expressed less 1 2 3 4 Introduction. p. Op.

4).2 And more—two sentences before we read 'that besides the basic plan linking together the different cycles of themes..126 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch clearly in the versions taken over by the Yahwist. larger complexes of traditions were already available (to the Yahwist)'.5-8. 6.3 The theology of the Yahwist But we have not yet mentioned a crucial matter of discussion 1 Ibid. 'Literarkritik und Traditionsgeschichte'. Rendtorff.5 3. 4 Wolff (op. 18. EvTh 27 (1967) 138-53. pp. cit.3 The peculiar accomplishment of the Yahwist consists not in the linguistic and stylistic shaping of the traditions handed on (although there was possibly something like this.2. . 5 See further R. 12. 3 See above under 3.2.17-18. but in the arrangement of the traditions (although the complexes of tradition were to a large extent available to him) and in putting certain emphases (which one can recognize clearly only in a very few places)4 Here. even though one cannot exactly prove it). in my opinion. 2 As shown above (2. although more and more some of the individual parts of which the structure once consisted have become questionable or have had to be abandoned entirely. Critical reflection shows that the structure is really held together only by the common conviction of those for whom the documentary hypothesis is a fixed piece of data in the tradition of scholarship in which they stand.1-4a.!36ff.) talks of five much discussed bridge passages.1 Here too there is the undemonstrated claim about the 'linking together of the ancient traditions' and the intention inherent in it. exclusively from the book of Genesis.3-2.23b-33. it does not occur to them to doubt it. T3y giving shape to the promise motifs handed on and by linking together the ancient traditions he achieved furthermore a theologizing*. even though so many individual supporting arguments have been shown to be no longer tenable. one can discern clearly yet again how the overall conception has been maintained. 8. there can be no talk of a promise motif or motifs being passed on to the Yahwist.21-22. What then could he still link together? There is present here once more that general yet ill-defined consensus which we noted earlier.1 (towards the end).

i. He did not mention in it his The Formcritical Problem. inasmuch as his share in the composition is given a considerably lower rating and his theological contribution finds expression mainly in a few programmatic sentences. 2 The Kerygma'. Wolff. 18. it is 'the clamp between the primeval story and the story of salvation' and 'the etiology of all etiologies of Israel'. there are mainly two places: Gen. A great number of authors have repeated mechanically that one can best recognize the Yahwist where he himself formulates and this he does in those same programmatic sentences. has put it at the centre of the theology of the Yahwist.e.1-3 and 18. We have already referred to the basic shift of emphasis which judgment about the Yahwist as a theologian has undergone through Noth. in his commentary on Genesis he writes of both passages: If they do not stem precisely from his (the Yahwist's) pen.'. It has already been noted that von Rad saw the theological achievement of the Yahwist above all in the theological composition. In their presentation of the Yahwist.1 This text has been explained often and in detail. .5 and 8. The selection of texts has generally remained the same.22b-33.22b-33. Criticism of Peniateuchal Criticism 127 which dominates to a large extent the current literature: the theology of the Yahwist. with the heaviest emphasis. Von Rad had already elaborated in detail the significance of the first: it is a link which binds the story of the human race described in the primeval story with the story of Israel which begins with Abraham. on the contrary plays no role at all in von Rad's presentation of the Yahwist's theology. Moth's opinion has prevailed by and large. Besides a few sentences in the primeval story (especially 6.2 The second text.. most of the contributions just cited pass quickly from a few general and often quite summary statements about the composition to a treatment of the theology of the Yahwist.21-22). p.!37ff.. pp. 12. in the arrangement of the hitherto independent large complexes of tr&dition of the Pentateuch/Hexateuch.3. they are in their whole pattern of thought incomparably closer to him 1 The Form Critical Problem'. Gen. It is striking that this text is missing from the presentation of the Yahwist's theology in the Introduction of Fohrer and Kaiser. 66.

cit. 84-85. 5 Introduction. pp. p. in any case one would like very much to ascribe so lapidary a piece of theology to this great theologian. As this is beyond dispute.7 What is the reason for saying that we must be dealing here with a particularly characteristic and important piece of the theology? A first reason is easy to see. 6 See above under 3. 239.1.128 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch than the really ancient narratives'.. 3 A History. Noth sees it differently. 151 8 Cf. p. can we latch on to a lengthy piece in all these passages which he himself has written: Abraham's dialogue with Yahweh before the destruction of Sodom'.4 According to Kaiser 'we ought to regard (this piece) as something peculiarly his own' so that 'it is in this passage perhaps that we come to recognize the Yahwist most clearly as a theologian'. 627. Eng. it has never had a constitutive function for the understanding of the Yahwist. 395. it immediately suggests itself to many exegetes that the piece is to be ascribed to the Yahwist. I. pp. but of a theological reflection which. 214-15. it seems. 1972. but stands in solitary isolation.20-33): The passage stands quite isolated and it is scarcely possible for us to classify it in the historical-theological process'.. 7 Introduction. without any doubt. apparently. only the 'addition' in 18. 1 Genesis (German. . speaks in favour of one of the other sources. for von Rad.1 However. 2 Theology of the Old Testament. It is obviously a matter here not of a piece of ancient story tradition. n. Noth.239. 238. 9th edn.2. and so only the Yahwist remains.p.5 Smend writes: 'Only once.8 such refined theological reflection ought not be confided to a 'redactor*. 2nd edn). is to be reckoned only to a stage in the process of tradition when reworking and reflection were at work. 1972. in his Theology of the Old Testament he has this to say about the second piece (18.6 And this is the only passage outside the primeval story that Fohrer expressly cites in his presentation of the theology of the Yahwist. op. p. p.2 Hence. 4 Op. cit. For him this piece is 'an independent contribution of J'3 and 'in the analysis of the theology of J deserves especially careful attention'. Nothing.19 is deuteronomistic.

it becomes clear that people in this world can only be rescued through the free action of God himself. cit. Introduction. p... ci*. p. Noth. 239.p. The statement of Noth (and Kaiser) that the human person 1 2 3 4 5 Cf. that he would not as it were number off the 'just' over against the 'godless'.3. rather for him the very few 'just' carry such weight that because of them the great crowd of the 'godless' would go unpunished instead of the opposite. Kaiser.2 Similarly Smend: The problem of the primeval story is also the problem of the other parts of the Yahwistic work: it is the action of Yahweh. Ibid. Cf. that the 'righteous action' of the 'judge of the whole earth' (v. .. such reflections do not appear 'in other parts of the Yahwistic work' (Smend). Noth. cit.3 But does this do justice to the text? Is the text really dealing with the general problem described? And is it really justified to set Sodom and all the 'people of the world' in parallelism?4 Noth has already described the problem quite differently: it is 'to be noted in this discussion. consist in this. p.. 25) would. described as unambiguously and consistently as anywhere else in the Old Testament'.. the "judge of all the world". 239.. according to Abraham's view implicitly confirmed by Yahweh.. 23 n.239.. namely that the individual 'just' would be taken up into the judgment that befalls the 'godless".32. not through some sort of righteousness of their own by which they might be able to protect themselves and others before the divine judgment'. towards a world where righteousness is missing or hopelessness seems to lie at its base'. and he is of the opinion that thus 'the human being of the Yahwistic primeval story stands before us. 2. Op. op.1 Noth points out that in Sodom. op. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 129 But in what does the characteristically Yahwistic quality of this piece consist? Kaiser cites with approval a sentence from Noth which he would like to extend 'across the whole of the Yahwist's narrative story': '.. there were not even the 'ten just' of v. probably there would not even be one'. And further.5 But this is not at all the problem of the primeval story! The idea that the righteousness of Noah could have any influence on YHWH's decision to destroy appears nowhere there.

7).7 belongs to the 'Elohist'. .1 But the closest parallel to Abraham as intercessor would be the 'elohistic' passage in Gen. Introduction.4 For von Rad it is 'a unique breakthrough which. And so it is difficult to find in Gen. 12. individualistic solution* of the question. p. 3 Noth. One may leave it an open question whether the view in the text is 'still far from the later.7. when the firstborn of Egypt are destined to death. I.29). how blessing can come to those threatened with death in Abraham-Israel.3. 147f. 18. there is no intercession. op.. 11.. the plagues also serve the same goal (8. on the contrary. see Wolff. op.3.14. p. 20. The answer is: in the tireless intervention of Abraham-Israel on behalf of those who are destined to death'. 8.4-6 where it is said expressly 'not because of your own righteousness'.18. that Pharaoh acknowledge that YHWH alone is God and has the power (Exod. 1 'The Kerygma'. 17!2 The intercession of the Tahwistic' Moses for the Egyptians is. Wolff wants to see in this passage an initial development of the Yahwistic theme of Gen. 9. cit.6.22b-33 evidence of a theology that is characteristic of the work of the Yahwist. 9. 2 For the claim that 20. 9. 151 5 Theology of the Old Testament. and finally. 4 Fohrer. laid down a new way of thinking which took its point of departure from the protective and representative function of the He sees it 'in the perspective of many future generations' in line with the statements about 'the suffering servant who brings salvation "for the many" (Isa. it is clear that the passage must be seen in the context of the discussions about the relationship between collective (or corporate) to individual righteousness as found particularly in Ezekiel. 395. in place of the old notion of collectivity.3 or is already 'on the way from corporate to individual responsibility and liability as formulated in Ezekiel'.10)'. pp. 53. p. On the contrary. but rather Ezek.130 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch cannot be rescued 'through any personal righteousness' would find its parallel in the Pentateuch at best in Deut. 238.5 But is this passage really so 'unique*? It seems to me that the important point of reference is less the discussion about individual responsibility as such in Ezekiel 18. cit. in many ways doctrinaire.

in the question of the 'theology*.2 What remains of the 'theology of the Yahwist'? First. p. von Rad passes over too quickly. 20). 18.14. 16.3. if need be. 18. Theology.22b-33 to be an 'insertion'. of the Yahwist as a 'source' or 'source layer' as understood by the documentary hypothesis. or is simply of the opinion that the time is now come when the intercession of such exemplary and just people can no longer ward off judgment. Criticism of Pentate uchal Criticism 131 14. He holds Gen. 18. It is evident here that for many authors—often enough when writing for a rather broad circle of readers—the idea of the Yahwist as the great theologian who has given the Pentateuch its decisive stamp. might take its 1 Verses 22-23! 2 On this. Rather. 1899 (3rd edn). 395.22b-33 and Ezek.12-20 belong to a common context in the process of the history of tradition. 14. cf. One could say somewhat subtly: Ezekiel's contemporaries also know the problem dealt with in Genesis 18. Daniel. 10. I. let it be said expressly here that this is in no way to contest the possibility of making synthetic theological statements about the Pentateuch as a whole. It must remain open here whether Ezekiel holds this thesis to be utterly false theologically. in the methodologically strictest sense. 14. the talk here is first. The question in the background there is clearly: can a few just effectively protect the whole community from the judgment of God? The negative answer given in Ezekiel 14 is only comprehensible if those listening to the prophet reckon with this possibility. underscores the closeness to Isa. a further remark must be inserted here: one often finds paraphrase-like descriptions of the overall theological conception of the Pentateuch/Hexateuch which are given out as the theology of the Yahwist.12-20 which. they alone would be saved (Ezek. 25. Die Composition. But Ezekiel denies this: men so exemplary and just as Noah. and Job could not effect that. . in my opinion. has broken away from the literary critical problems of the documentary hypothesis and become independent. Von Rad.3. However. and the 'motive' for it was a 'mood' that '(dominated) the Jewish people at the time when Jeremiah and Ezekiel prophesied and the book of Job took form'. p. whether a few just can save a whole community. What.1 in any case it is clear that the theological reflections in Gen. 53. Wellhausen.

12. But they are not of the kind out of which one can develop a theology of the Yahwist.* or limited almost entirely to the primeval story. It is entirely in accord with the present state of scholarship when the theology of the Yahwist is developed out of one programmatic passage. When he describes 12. but not with von Rad. the element of the divine promise addressed to the patriarchs plays an astonishingly small role. in Probleme biblischer Theologie. 'Genesis 12. The Form Critical'. 60. he is in agreement with Noth. pp. Festschrift G. ZThK 53 (1956) 1-10 = Das kleine Credo und andere Studien zum Alien Testament. 233.1-3 und die Urgeschichte des Jahwisten'.7 as 'tradition' (ibid. And so even Wolff in his approach to Gen. 2 Thus Zimmerli. 52554.3 And as for the Abraham-Lot narrative in Genesis 13. Here again. On the contrary: they present almost an embarrassment.132 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch place. L. pp. And the individual programmatic statements can be claimed for him only to a very limited extent—and that only at the very beginning of his work. p. .2 It is clearly not possible to present a theological conception which embraces the whole Pentateuch and can be shown convincingly to belong to the Yahwist. in its present narrative con1 Wolff. is 'contracted to a secondary narrative feature' and 'is not in the area of his particular interest'. 167-72. 1971. von Rad. cit. 25-35. 140. Language and style he took for the most part from what was available to him. Individual passages had for the most part already been formed. 3 Op. is a later question.H. O. 1965. What remains then of the 'theology of the Yahwist*? The great achievement of arrangement in which von Rad thought he could discern his theological intentions. Steck. p. 12. which so clearly runs through the whole patriarchal tradition. can no longer be claimed for him. A History. Rost. 'Zum geschichtlichen Ort der Pentateuchquellen'.). The Kerygma'. pp.1-3 has to explain that the promise of the land. Old Testament Theology in Outline. p. attention must be drawn to a peculiar situation: although attempts to present a theology of the Yahwist proceed almost entirely from Genesis.. Yet it is clearly evident that there is in them a very concentrated form of theological reflection and speech. in which. Gen.1-3.

1.1 And so he exchanges the theme expressly mentioned in the text. how do our reflections so far stand in relationship to the 'documentary hypothesis'? We gave precedence over this to the general question about the present state of pentateuchal research in the matter of sources. this question is *but touched on in passing'. But other authors as well scarcely mention the promises in this context. that the uncertainties coming to light show a very obvious weakness in the whole theory which. or can scarcely. Wolff writes: The one blessed becomes a source of blessing inasmuch as he freely leaves to the other fertile land'. ci*. be taken into consideration when one inquires about the 'theology' of the 'sources'. cit. op. the weight of tradition has not yet allowed to penetrate consciousness. Criticism of Pentate uchal Criticism 133 tent. this theology often has to be tapped from very indirect hints. whereas. p..4 Reasons against the acceptance of a Yahwistic work We return then to the place where the reflections of this chapter began. in the intent of the Yahwist'.. as is the case with Westermann. 22. in which the theme (namely. And when these themselves are the subject of a theme.l4a 2 See above under 2. We had put the question. the assurance of the land to Abraham plays a central role. the promise of the land. we came to the conclusion that the agreement in essential basic questions was very much less than is generally maintained.2. for that not contained in it. the 'sources' on the contrary play no role. 133 on Gen.p.1-3 the *Yahwistic' theme of blessing. 1 Op. in many cases. In his case.3. This is true in a special way for the Yahwist. blessing) is not directly sounded. 3 Cf.2 There is obviously in Genesis a large area of quite expressly theological statements which cannot. taking out of 12. so the question must now be put.16-17: This is a guide to understanding passages. so as to be able to interpret the text within the frame of the Yahwistic theology. .3 3. as he sees it. in reverse. Wolff. can one discern indications of a pre-deuteronomic reworking or shaping of the Pentateuch as a whole? In the present state of pentateuchal research this function is generally ascribed to the Pentateuch 'sources'.

represents one stage within the history of the theological reworking and interpretation of the patriarchal story.4). for. incompatible contradictions arise.3. 22. as Westermann has shown. 12. 26. as we have seen. . But this is not the final stage of the process of formation of the tradition.1-3. If our reflections are correct. the element of blessing is not an independent promise theme. namely that one can discern in them a very intensive theological reworking and interpretation which did not take place at one stroke. of the guiding theological ideas that compass the Pentateuch as a whole. but not the last. without exception. And attempts to work out the 'theology of the Yahwist' are not in the end touched by this. are acknowledged as valid. The question is of particular importance for our theme inasmuch as the question of the 'theology* of the Yahwist is as a general rule understood as the question of his overall conception. which is generally held to be the central statement of the Yahwist. Now we have already seen that in the different attempts to set out the theology of the Yahwist. this promise appears in a further developed form in which it is not the patriarch himself.14) are to be a blessing for all the clans of the earth. Gen.3) and Jacob (28. which make it clear that the fundamental unanimity claimed does not in fact exist to any extent. but his 'seed' that is to be the mediator of the blessing to the 'nations' (Gen. then the question must be put. belongs to a stage in the process of tradition which links the stories of the three individual patriarchs with each other: Abraham (12. the promise addresses of the patriarchal stories play a remarkably minor role. Verse 3. And so it is precisely here that the crucial point must lie on which rests our statement of the question to the theses of pentateuchal research up to the present.18. but that they show different stages and layers. when the Abraham and Isaac stories are joined together. therefore. but in the concrete application of the general framework.134 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch there are certain general basic presuppositions which. how does any sort of Yahwistic theological work relate to this? It is remarkable that none of the independent themes of the promise addresses to the patriarchs is found in the passage Gen. 12.

12.3. the same wording of the formulation is found in Gen. 4 See the respective passages in Eissfeldt. that it is only with a layer of reworking that bears the deuteronomic stamp that explicit cross references have been inset. also. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 135 Other texts which are ascribed to the Yahwist belong to other stages in the process. 31.4. pp. 46. 13. and Noth.147. 1922 = 1962 (2nd edn). 161. Eissfeldt assigns 46. where all three assign 28. is described as an unknown land. 2 Eissfeldt and Fohrer assign Gen.13 also belong here. 13. Fohrer.15.14-17 to L/N and Gen. 31. Fohrer. for example.45 These examples are only meant to show that our reflections on the theological reworking of the patriarchal stories can scarcely be brought into harmony with the acceptance of a 'theology of the Yahwist' as it is often represented today. 13.18.5. The incompatibility becomes all the more clear when we take up once more the question.. 5 Op. so that it is not very plausible when these texts. pp.13-15. Noth. and there is no mention at all that the patriarchs had already lived there for a 1 See above under 2.52-53.1 are assigned to different sources. 15. Particularly remarkable is the fact that in Exod. Eissfeldt.2-4 to E/J. which obviously belong together.2 This is true also in other places: for example. 28.15 to J.7. the assurances of guidance to Jacob in Gen. Fohrer to E. A History.3 to L/N. cit. but in brackets.8 the land. 21. 3. 28. a verse which is judged entirely differently in the allocation to sources. 28.13-15 to J. .14-17 to the Yahwist.11. 3 See above under 2.3. n. p. attributes Gen. Hexateuch-Synopse. inhabited by foreign nations. into which YHWH will bring the Israelites after leading them out of Egypt.14-17 and 28. Introduction. Noth to J. 103.3 are assigned to different sources. Eissfeldt and Fohrer assign 31. displays the later form of the promise of the land in which the 'seed' is the bearer of the promise. Gen.2-4. Noth to J. Gen. which have so much in common.p. Other promise addresses have several layers. what contribution to the understanding of the comprehensive reworking and interpretation of the Pentateuch as a whole can the assumption of a Yahwistic theology provide? We have drawn attention earlier to the remarkable fact that there are no discernible links between the patriarchal stories and the complexes of tradition that follow in the Pentateuch. for example.3.30.

in my opinion. He requires that one 'prescind completely' from all non-narrative passages with a . the fact nevertheless remains: in the rest of the Pentateuch there is not a single text that mentions the patriarchs and the promises made to them which is assigned to the Yahwist (or to any one of the 'old' sources!) by the ruling pentateuchal criticism. as does Noth. We have already mentioned that there are diametrically opposed views among the exegetes whether and to what extent the sections dealing with cultic laws are to be combined with the narrative sections. reasons against the acceptance of a Yahwistic work in the sense of the documentary hypothesis. It is clear that today it is not only difficult or almost impossible to agree about which details are to be assigned to the Yahwist.3 The problem of a priestly narrative in the patriarchal story Before we draw the final conclusions from the reflections on the Tahwist'. we want to turn our attention first to the question of the status of the other chief source of the Pentateuch. Even when one makes way for sources to which one may assign passages in this synthesis of texts.136 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch long time and that continually repeated promises had assured them and their descendants that they would possess it. how one delimits his work and determines his method and intention. and in my opinion compelling. the 'priestly document'. of a coherent narrative work covering the whole Pentateuch. It is utterly inconceivable that the Yahwist has now suddenly forgotten. or has consciously chosen to remain silent about. about whose delimitation there is apparent agreement. 3. Noth represents the most extreme position inasmuch as he will include under the symbol P only the narrative sections.e. i. all the theological concerns that preoccupied him with the divine promises to the patriarchs in their various forms. have but one explanation: a *Yahwist'. does not exist. but it is clear also that there are weighty. who shaped and handed on the patriarchal stories and the complexes of tradition that follow them. This conclusion best supplements the uncertainties and incompatibilities in the current discussions described in detail above. These facts.

cit. about this 'coherent (story) without gaps' in the P-narrative? Let us examine the question in the patriarchal stories! Here.. This is all the more important inasmuch as it follows therefrom 'that only in this (i. however that may be. But.3. Ibid. Noth accepts that the redactor who put the pentateuchal sources together used P as a basis and framework and inserted the narrative material of the older sources into this framework. that Noth carries through his opinion consistently by excluding all the material that is opposed to it. coherent account of events from the creation on.e. For our statement of the question it is important that the document being discussed is a coherent P narrative with but few gaps. the P-narrative).2 An astounding closed circle! When one excludes all the non-narrative material. Noth himself must be content with a 'very meagre P-content'. 10. the rest 'stands out more clearly and clear-cut as narrative. What 'stands out' here? Only this. only the question of its ending is in dispute: whether the work ends with the death of Moses in Deuteronomy 34.p. . 1 2 3 4 A History. There is another of Noth's theses that has found wide agreement. is there to be expected the complete preservation of the original content and so a coherent (story) without gaps when the [other] elements are excluded'. the opinion that the priestly document is a narrative work is today almost universally shared. Op. p.3 What. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 137 cultic-ritual interest 'when dealing with the P narrative'.1 He continues: This last-mentioned thus stands out more clearly and clear-cut as a narrative than it would with the conventional application of the symbol P.p.4 And he sees himself compelled at once to call in question his own basic principles. cit. then...l7.l2. Op. This includes the opinion that P provides an originally independent. or whether parts of the traditions of the occupation of the land in the book of Joshua belong to it..

cit. 124) = Kleine Schriften zum Alien Testament. Speiser. pp. 2. 1966. 3 Op. Obviously it has not been preserved 'without gaps'. Introduction. col. and is elevated by Pharaoh'. H. cit..5 Weimar in any case is of the opinion that one cannot speak of an independent P-Joseph story: The information about Joseph carries no weight of its own. 195.lflOl 2 'Sinn und Ursprung der priestlichen Geschichtserzahlung'. 'Pentateuque'. This once more is a clear case of a circular argument. 174-75. Cf. ZThK 49 (1952) 121-43 (esp. op. 121-22 = pp.1 K Elliger has largely disregarded the fragmentary character of this tradition. 6 Op.A. pp. 5 Op. Genesis. it only wants to explain why Jacob went down into Egypt'.. 37. 831. 41. The possibility that perhaps there might not be such a coherent 1 Noth..1 The stories of Joseph and Jacob Let us begin with the Joseph story. cit. are reduced to an introduction to the revelation on Sinai' (Introduction. p... 174-98 (p.46a of the summary synthesis of the presupposed P-narrative of the Joseph story'. but that nevertheless they postulate the existence of an originally independent coherent narrative. p.2 When one looks for proof of the 'sold into Egypt' in the table provided by Elliger himself.1. E. We have rather.46a is not included in Fohrer's synthesis of the P source layer. p. Weimar has dealt with this text recently. p. 195. p. in P 'the primeval and patriarchal stories. even though in his view 'it was not all that extensive'.3 one finds only a gap! P. DBS VII. only the brief note in Gen. Joseph makes himself the object of his brothers' hatred.138 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 3.6 We are faced therefore with the situation that there are only a very few remarks on the 'Joseph' theme which the exegetes are able to assign to P. . 177). p.. According to Fohrer. According to him 'it is (here) no more than the notification of what is absolutely necessary. Gazelles. n. 292. p. *besides the introduction in Gen. 1964.4 So he provides his own proposed reconstruction of 'the text struck out by Rp' and concludes contentedly that his own constructed text fits into the gap 'without interruption'. cit. 86. 181). ZAW86 (1974) 174-203 (p. however sparse it may be. 4 'Aufbau und Struktur der priesterschriftlichen Jakobsgeschichte'.3. is sold into Egypt. There must be such— because P has presented a coherent account without gaps. 14. 41. 1966. He discovered the gap. 195).

2. is difficult to prove. 492. 3. Genesis. 2.46a to P? First the details about his age: on each occasion the age of Joseph at the time is given. things seem clear: There is no separate Isaac story in the priestly history'. 492. a whole narrative. But there are still further reasons.3. For the Isaac story.3. after the exclusion of secondary elements. Ibid. Zur Traditionsgeschichte und Theologie der priesterschriftlichen Jakobsuberlieferungen'. 41. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Genesis erkl&rt. Gunkel.4 He discovers. sees in the attachment of the words 'king of Egypt' to 'Pharaoh' in Gen. p. Holzinger. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 139 narrative is not considered. Genesis. But that the verse for that reason belongs to P. 3ff.. 'Jakob der Mann des Segens.5 Unfortunately. cit.3. Gross. this narrative no longer exists.p. the reason for the enmity is Jacob's preference for Joseph. and the whole of v.6 But this is very surprising. after discovering the tension. nevertheless they serve as generally accepted signs of P-passages. Joseph himself has given cause for it.224. is a unity and a possibility for P. Op. though it would explain the situation without trouble. See below under 3.2 It is maintained that in 37.3 Gunkel has less scruple: '37. 321-22). p.2 belongs entirely to P. and the prevailing opinion is that details of this kind are characteristic of P. Holzinger. 1898. According to w. See W. he knows too the reasons why P introduced changes in face of the older source. in the motivation of the enmity of the brothers towards Joseph there is a difference from or a contradiction to the narrative beginning in v.46a an 'unnecessary and pedantic addition' that is 'characteristic' of P.2. 37. 219. What are the reasons for ascribing Gen. . according to v. p. and this is entirely the work of imagination. comes to the conclusion: 'then only P is left to take 26'. devaluations—of the writer P are common. pp. without any criteria for them ever being given. such does not exist. One must then in all sobriety conclude that for the exegete who is not convinced beforehand that there must be a P-Joseph story.2 and 41. Bib 49 (1968) 321-44 (spec. whose beginning is allegedly here. followed by Gunkel..1 Such valuations—or better.

4 Genesis.2 3.140 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch One must assume as certain that the patriarchal genealogy Abraham—Isaac-Jacob was long established at the time when P was supposedly written. but felt himself obliged to preserve due order. p. obliged to talk. for at least 'feeling himself obliged to preserve due order'.1. 25. p. the sentence only raises again the dilemma described by Gunkel.19 as 'having been prefaced by Pg to the whole Isaac story as heading and structure-signal (?). one attributed many fragments of 1 Genesis. there is no Isaac story. cit. 25. 385. 385. knew the older sources.12-17'. But nevertheless.3 A sentence difficult to understand! How can a heading which names Ishmael be the introduction to the Jacob story? Apart from the fact that Weimar himself a little later describes the passage Gen. then one gets into insoluble difficulties.1 It is curious enough that P who. 175 established the absence of the Isaac story in P. 3 See above under 3.12-17 explicitly as the 'Ishmael story' without solving the contradiction. . which has made its home in much exegesis. How could P have simply waived an Isaac story? Gunkel sensed this problem: 'It is strange that P under the heading 'genealogy of Isaac' narrates in essence the stories of Jacob and then under the heading 'genealogy of Jacob' those (Sagen) of Joseph.3. although he had already on p. this accords with the image of P as a second rate writer. p.. according to the prevailing opinion. 'had nothing appropriate to say about Isaac'! He is given credit. 25. This surprising shift has come about because P had nothing appropriate to say about Isaac. In other words: there is no discernible beginning to the P-Jacob narrative. 2 I cannot understand how Weimar (op.4 When one wants to understand the Toledot' headings attributed to P as structural signs in a coherent and continuous P-narrative. 185) can speak of the Toledot-formula in Gen.2 The Jacob Story What is the situation with the Jacob story? Weimar writes: 'The Jacob story begins with the Toledot of Ishmael Gen.3. and so to put in a column for Isaac and fill it out'. And what next? Earlier. rather condescendingly.

and would have sent him on his way with a blessing extending far afield (Gen. he would have been satisfied with a note about his departure from there.3. in an unusually detailed speech and with the most pressing of reasons. pp.b). not to mention a report on the successful outcome of the commission to marry. 182 2 Weimar. . p. 183. 43ff. Eissfeldt. Introduction.18ap. Fohrer's table.3. 31. one invokes Elliger among others: 'Omitting Jacob's stay in Paddan-aram.6 But why is the piece ascribed to P? Here the arguments are taken almost exclusively from language. cit.3. But P would not have considered it necessary so much as to register Jacob's arrival in Paddan-aram. 7 Cf. p. p. According to P Isaac. Elliger plays down this dilemma when he writes: 'Jacob obeys by looking around for a wife among his mother's relations'.. Introduction.3 He thus hushes up the fact that nothing at all is reported of the execution of the commission. n. p. see above under 3.46—28. the word is generally regarded as characteristic of P.. would have required Jacob not to take a wife from 'the daughters of Canaan'. 4. the land of his mother's family to find one.1. But what of the quite isolated verse Gen.5 All the more inconvenient then is the appearance of such a 'fragment'! Weimar too must concede after all that 'the beginning of the unit has been broken off by Rp'. First. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 141 texts in the story of Jacob and Esau to P.1.3. 27. if one 1 See the divisions of P in Eissfeldt.b which must now bear the whole burden of the thesis of a continuous Jacob story from P? The exegete is obviously not at ease with it. 4 Op.4 One recalls that for Noth only for the P-narrative 'is there to be expected the complete preservation of the original content'. 183. 3 See above under 3.1 but now. Hexateuch-Synopse. 5 See above under 3.3.7 However. Pg only takes up again with Jacob's departure from there (31. According to Noth we have here 'the rare appearance of a Pfragment which must have been preceded by the now missing P-information about Jacob's marriages.2 Now this is a remarkable and unreasonable demand on the reader.1. 14. 6 See above under 3.5).18ap. but to find one to go to Paddan-aram.

In 46. The places in question in the book of Genesis are 12. within the reflection on the theology of history (w.15. which is closer to the priestly pentateuchal layer. which likewise is not ascribed to P.142 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch opens the concordance. once in a text (34.7) is not generally reckoned to P. 21). It too is held to be characteristic of P. The verb need not be dealt with here as it occurs in more or less immediate context with the noun.7. and that with reservation. add Num. p. Finally. they are attributed once again to P because of this linguistic usage! And almost all of them are in a context which is ascribed to one of the other sources and from which they are taken out because of their linguistic usage. 16.3. Paddan-aram is found in a list of the sons of Jacob and their descendants which today is not predominantly ascribed to P or is. on the contrary. even though this involves difficulties. 501. in the form of a 1 Die Genesis Ubersetzt und erkldrt. 35. is.14. It is found later in the Pentateuch within the "Holiness Code' (Lev. 2 Genesis.22b-36. at any rate. 46. 12.5. 36. in which Paddan-aram occurs.32b (a piece almost universally not ascribed to P!) and 35.1 There is a further attestation in Gen. p. as far as I know. 388. one finds surprisingly that in the book of Genesis more than a half of occurrences are in texts which are not ascribed to P: the word occurs five times in Genesis 14 (w. 15.6. 1924. regarded as an addition to P. 22. however its usage is quite different. It occurs three times in the book of Genesis. there is the designation of the land from which Jacob departs. . The list of Jacob's sons in Gen.11). The word 2 serves as the next 'proof (Gunkel) for P. 11. 13-16). Weimar tries to explain why P does not report the birth of the sons there.. In the attestations that remain.23) which no one ascribes to P. Taddan-aram'. is attributed to P only by Procksch. First it must be stated that the only attestation which uses simply the designation Taddan' (Gen. 48. And so one can scarcely say that this word can make a contribution to source criticism.. ascribed to P. 13.6. although immediately beforehand there is a text so reckoned. where one would expect it. the closed circle of argumentation appears once more. which among recent exegetes. but only 'makes up for it.16 [2x].

33. even though all assertions about the completeness and integrity of the P-narrative are clearly contradictory.2 or ends up after the Toledot of Jacob in Genesis 37. cit. pp. 7).g. and on another the preceding words as well.3 And so. op. the list is either given preference so as to substitute for the missing account of the birth of the sons of Jacob. 11. Gunkel is not entirely consistent when he claims for P on one occasion the words cited. p. 35. inasmuch as the argument from linguistic usage enables the texts ascribed to P to give each other mutual support.3. the expression Paddan-aram is found in the chronological note on the marriage of Isaac in Gen. this thesis is maintained.1.20. when he came from Paddan-aram' are ascribed to P. Procksch. Eissfeldt. no accompanying description is given of the land which one could set over against it as in some way characteristic of the linguistic usage of the other sources.lTft .5! The last mentioned 1 2 3 4 5 See above under 3. op..6. 5.5 This solution is classical in that it proceeds exclusively from the argument of linguistic usage and cuts several words out of their context as it were with a scissors. Hence.4 The classical solution is to take out v. It should be further noted that.2. p. Hexateuch-Synopse. 388. Fohrer. nevertheless acquiring thereby and at the same time criteria for determining other texts. But not by Wellhausen. 45. cit. p. Composition. Gen. 69. 25.18a is assigned to P because of the expression Paddan-aram.. 553.31. 18a so that Jacob's arrival in Shechem is assigned to one of the older sources and only the words 'in the land of Canaan. e. There is often talk merely of the city of Haran—generally too in texts that are usually ascribed to P.9. it has been common since Gunkel to re-arrange the P-text fragments in the Joseph story arbitrarily so as to create a tolerably coherent text.. with the expression Paddanaram. 12. cit. cf. op. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 143 list'. in the introductory piece to the divine address to Jacob in Gen. Gunkel.1 Others have experienced greater difficulties here. But the P-context must be established! Finally. 'to the city of Shechem'. 384. p.3. p. 368. Introduction. although they are in no way a bother or offensive. and four times in the narrative of Isaac's sending of Jacob (28. So too the text fragment Gen.

and in Genesis 50 in passages quite close to each other by J (v. 42.g. and nobody ascribes them to P.1 One accepts that the second half of the sentence.20 relating to Isaac). Within the story this designation is used in all 'sources' and layers.5 46. 25.3 We have already noted earlier these typical judgments about P. But what is meant by this 'certain sign of P'? The concordance provides the following information: about half of the attestations of in the book of Genesis are in the Joseph story. 36. nevertheless. or the like. But the opinion is 1 Once again it is to be noted that Wellhausen does not ascribe this fragment to P. 13). according to Eissfeldt. though not Paddan-aram.. . 7. but scarcely has anything to do with 'sources' in the sense of the documentary hypothesis. by secondary pieces (48. this is now lodged in v. op.2 Gunkel says more exactly why this is a sign of P: 'the superfluous and precise determination of the place'. Ga. 5 A History. in Gen. by P again (48. or rather in Luz. namely Gen. 5) and P (v. p. the only other descriptions used of it are 'the land of sojournings' (generally to *P'!). E. The expression Paddan-aram then occurs only in the context of Jacob (with the exception of the note in Gen. this is ascribed to P together with the other attestations with reference to 'characteristic' linguistic usage. 35. Genesis erklart. 19. The next piece ascribed to P is again a fragmentary sentence. e. 3 Op. 13 which exegetes divide variously between J and E. but Haran. The opinion that the land of Canaan' is a characteristic of P would therefore include the thesis that the other sources renounce an exact designation of the land. 6a where is a certain sign of P'. 'he and all the people with him' stands unrelated.. A 'certain sign of P? Further. which now bears the name of Bethel. cit. p. cit.387.144 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch has also the word .5. the concordance shows that there is no other so to speak 'geographical' designation of the land in the patriarchal stories.3). Holzinger's reason is: T naturally narrated as well the arrival in Bethel. 99-100 n. 4 Cf.12). like so many other examples. This is without doubt a pointer to a particular layer in the tradition. 2 Holzinger.p. 184.7. 'the land of the fathers'.4 Noth. pp.

this is scarcely evidence of the studied and 'pedantic' style alleged against the source P. occurs in 23. It is curious that 35. that it lay > (Gen. we find very fragmentary and incoherent 1 Holzinger in Einleitung in den Hexateuch.13) (translated each time by 'east of Mamre' in NEB.18 it is said of Abraham that Tie settled by the terebinths of Mamre which are in (near) Hebron'.3.9) and Jacob (50.14 is ascribed to E although/because it reports again the erection and anointing of the massebah which E has described already in 28.27. 35.2 (but without mention of Mamre). though this is presupposed in 49. He maintains there that the 'occurrence of (is) an almost certain mark of P'. the change of name from Luz to Bethel had already taken place earlier in the other sources.19.. characteristic of P.19.389.3 But in any case. v. 50. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 145 clearly laid to rest by the concordance material without more ado. while Mamre for its part is associated with Hebron in 23.1 After the divine address in Gen. is not clear'.27-29 is reckoned as P's. . In Gen. among other things. 15 is also to be accounted to P. 23.18.). 3 Ibid. p. had taken into account the findings in the concordance. There has already been talk of the problem of the list of Jacob's sons in Gen. For Gunkel.p.27-29 does not say that Isaac was buried in the cave. it is said several times of the field in which the cave was situated that Abraham bought. 35.22b-26. 35.17) or (23. 13. trans. 340. 25. namely in 28.9. The account of Jacob's return home to Isaac and of the latter^ death in 35. Further. 35.2 This is a bold statement as the two names occur together only here! The association of Kiriath-arba and Hebron.13). When we survey the texts in the Jacob story which are supposed to belong to P. It is remarkable that Gen. but with the limitation that it 'however occurs also in JE'.30-31 and though it is said of Abraham (25.30. cit. 49.19.9-13. 'the names Mamre and Kiriath-arba' are. But that is obviously using a double standard. 2 Op. 1893. There can be no question at all here of a standardized linguistic usage characteristic of a single source. 'why not. which is found in Gen. The repetition is apparently a sign of the same source and not of another.

p.146 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch pieces which can be attributed to this source for the most part only on very dubious grounds.1-17. The passages ascribed to P in the Abraham story. These reflections are important because they are an advance warning against considering Genesis 17 without more ado as a constituent part of a coherent narrative. 3. Questions begin again with the latter text. 9. First. and more.3 The Abraham story Let us now turn to the Abraham story \ It seems to offer the clearest and most convincing narrative complex. Such comprehensive and self-contained passages of a priestly character occur only rarely in the rest of the Pentateuch.1 3.2.2 Nowhere in the patriarchal stories is there a passage so extensively laid out. Noth has concluded 1 This makes no difference to Weimar's construction. many exegetes have felt themselves compelled to rearrange the texts freely at their discretion so as to construct some sort of reasonably continuous text. 145.1—2. then the migration of Abraham from Haran to the land of Canaan (12. starting from their own assumptions.4-5). the special nature of the passage must be considered carefully. 1. and as a whole bearing the marks of the priestly layer of the Pentateuch. it must be said that there is no coherent Jacob story from P. Genesis 17 stands out as an entity that is sui generis. are not as free compositions as seems to be the case here. . 1971. following on the genealogy of Shem (Gen. so self-contained. It is the freest composition' within the whole P-narrative.3. First. are for the most part small or very small textual units. see under 3. The Narrative Style of the Priestly Writer. 11.31-32).4.4a or Gen.E.1. This is all in such utter contradiction to the picture that the advocates of the documentary hypothesis are accustomed to paint of the P-narrative that. there are the pieces of information about itineraries: the migration of Terah with his family from Ur of the Chaldees to Haran with the chronological note about his age at his death (11.3. such as Gen. apart from ch. 2 S. In addition. McEvenue. 23 which is to be dealt with later. The few examples.10-17).

31. 1 Genesis.2 There is no need to 3 repeat here the observations on and the view that these are marks of P does not gain in probative strength by repetition. however. The passage Gen. hence outside of the passages ascribed to P. 61. 5. As for Gen. here'. would be a mark of P. 12. and elsewhere. Gen.3. 12. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 147 that 'a corresponding passage with the same content from the old sources has had to give way to the P-passage. But such assertions are not untypical of the method. Noth himself mentions them expressly a few sentences later. Why? First. 2 See above under 3. The balance of tfsu meaning 'persons' and i referring to the rest of one's possessions occurs again in Gen. here the opposite is assumed. This is 'in the interest of retaining as fully as possible' the content of P. But whereas in the Jacob and Joseph stories P-passages are supposed to have been suppressed by the older sources. the verb-form as in Gen. 22). 32. it need only be said that the chronological note in v. is not in the problem area inasmuch as it would hardly have suppressed a corresponding statement in another source. We have already experienced the whole area of problems that this last argument raises. this.3. 22.21. It is meaningless to claim as a mark of P. not to mention the assumption that because the piece allegedly belongs to P 'a corresponding passage with the same content from the old sources has had to give way'. because in this way different P-passages give each other mutual support. 4b.4b-5. 31. Ixxxv. In v.2.23. which is ascribed to P. i as well. it is the chronological note about Abraham's age at the time of his migration in v. cf.4b.10. 24.3. .3.23 (Eng. while there is no occasion at all to take it out of its context. The consequence of this is that the refutation of such an argument unleashes a sort of chain reaction and brings a whole series of texts into question.1 further. 3 See above tinder 3. Gunkel): and i and according to Holzinger. 4b is to be seen in conjunction with other like notes. 11. p. 5 we meet again an argument already well known: linguistic usage 'proves' that it belongs to P (Holzinger.1. it is the most natural and obvious way to state that somebody is departing and that he is taking others with him. 14.

9.. Gen. Gab to P. cit. good narrative does not say everything explicitly'.5 When one does not want to engage in this sort of argument. p. which can be dispensed with more easily in J than in P. so he disects a little more and assigns only v. lib. But there are a number of other arguments in addition. p. The arguments are again: (v. The absence of an explicit basis for the conflict between the herdsmen of Abraham and Lot disturbs him. Genesis erkl&rt. 12. This is a remarkable statement. further. Genesis.148 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 12. Rather it is based on the presupposition that there are several sources and attributes what is 'dispensable' in the main narrative to the other source. p.3 But in another place he says: 'A part of 6 is indispensable for the context'. p. that a lack of space is the cause of the quarrel is to be read out of 2. Op. 263.p. while reckoning v. Genesis. one can hardly find reasons for attributing anything in Genesis 13 to the P-narrative. and 12a come from F. It is of further interest to see how the resulting P-narrative 1 2 3 4 5 See above under 2. 10-11) and the 'cities of the valley*.1 In what follows. less clearly.4 This type of argument is characteristic. 5. the 'Jordan valley' describes the fertile area that Lot chooses. 13. Gunkel writes: '12a also.2 Criticisms are made here about the quality of the writing. it makes clear that the necessity of source division is not based on contradictions or tensions in the text. But Holzinger sees things differently.1-9 shows every sign of being very composite indeed. 6 is superfluous in the context of the story. 124. 174. 140. 12).6.1. which assumes the presence of several sources already. it will have done little to put the writers on the track of striking out something 'superfluous' so as to get a 'good narrative'. 140. and then looks for proofs for them. This becomes even clearer in v. a conflict is seen between the expressions the 'Jordan valley* (w. 7 and becomes entirely clear from 8.2. (v. 6). Gunkel writes: 'v. 6b to 'the other source'. It is incomprehensible how there could be any competition or contradiction here. . 12ab should belong to P. each of the expressions has a different function. while the 'cities of the valley' are mentioned as the place where Lot is to establish his future home.

174).3 Does this mean the other narrators who report Wellhausen. p. What are the arguments? According to Holzinger and Gunkel. always with precise dating. especially the dispute between the herdsmen and Lot's self-interest. Genesis. does not include 16.p.3. p. p. 16'. 15. is a half saint who must remain free from any suspicion that he went to live among the people of Sodom out of sympathy'. everything concrete. cit. 124. is missing.3.B. 12bp is attributed to another source! [author]). Gen. thus it would appear that Lot. 121 (= p. 2 Op.1 Holzinger's judgment is milder: 'What is remarkable for P is the easiness with which the separation of Abraham and Lot takes place without conflict. . there is not a sign'. it is a matter here of real and reliable history'. 14. are less concerned with 'real and reliable history'? Or ought one not ask this question? Further.1.4 3. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 149 is judged and evaluated. 3.1 under Q (= P). 15-16 are assigned to the P-narrative. p. Gunkel. 16.: because v. 12.1(a). la. as well as Abraham's readiness for a peaceful settlement. 6 Genesis.. Die Composition. He writes: *Here too P has taken merely the bare facts from the story. According to the basic principles of source division. 13. but without precise dating.6 A glance at 1 Ibid. 124. Characteristic also is the general nature of the statement that Lot settles in the area round about. 16. there must be tensions and contradictions in the text and/or clear indications in the language or content which lead to the exclusion of P-parts. Gunkel has on the whole a poor opinion of P. the 'pedantic addition' of 'Abraham's wife'. 5 A History. 3 See above under 3. 4 See n. nothing is said of his living in Sodom (N.5 This means therefore that what remains of the 'old Hagar story' is incomplete without these pieces. 264. Noth has to establish that 'the old Hagar story has been pruned at the beginning and the end in favour of the P-details in Gen.2 Elliger exalts still further the literary intentions of P: The main facts are communicated soberly. and of the mood of malicious joy ringing in the story. p. as Abraham's nephew and erstwhile companion in the caravan. a mark of P is to be found in v.

86. But it remains an open question for Noth how the original conclusion of the 'old Hagar story' may have looked. a classical 'J-'piece. that Hagar did not go back to Abraham. 14? Verse 15 could also be a 'redactional addition with attention to Gen. 12.17. which is ascribed to P. a piece regularly attributed to *E'.150 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch the concordance shows that this pedantic addition appears as well in Gen.8ff. p. as Wellhausen has already shown in detail. pp. and in 20. is a chronological note which must be seen in the context of other chronological notes. 'the utterly pedantic 1 A History.e. Many exegetes have followed this view. 21. 19-20. For Noth also v. One could use this material better as a certain proof that this part of the verse does not belong to P. 9 is a 'redactional addition'.3 where it is presupposed that Ishmael is present as a member of Abraham's family.8ff.'. The same holds for v.' What shows that it is part of a P-narrative? According to Holzinger. again. n. are more complex. 13. 21. prescinding from the sweeping judgment. 28. the very basic principles of source division forbid that it be assigned to P. Could a redactor be so purblind as to have pruned the indispensable conclusion of the narrative simply so as to substitute for it an inadequate sentence from P? The problems of this chapter.2 The words of the mal'ak YHWH in v. 16.1 But this is a very unsatisfactory piece of information. 15. i. Verse 3. 2 Die Composition. Only v. it is a note that Hagar went back to Abraham. it is not in competition with the expected statements of other 'sources'.18. The second address in particular presupposes that Ishmael grew up in the desert. 10 11-12. the 'old Hagar story' has been 'pruned at the end' in favour of P. Perhaps there was originally nothing more than the tribal saying about Ishmael and the place etiology in v. And as it is indispensable in the context of the narrative. if there is anything missing. 3 A History. p. but 'with attention to Gen. . 15 remains! According to Noth. as is well known. 9 require Hagar's return to Abraham. But there is nothing about this in v. but this verse certainly does not belong to the same layer of tradition or reworking as the two other addresses of the mal'ak in w.

2 Verses 3. 5 Holzinger. but in the final redaction it could 'only be accommodated to the continuation of the narrative Gen. 5 and 29. Ex 2.3 The list of exceptions is far too long for one to draw a definite criterion from it for source division. But. p. 3 Genesis. But this is a sign of embarrassment. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 151 awkwardness of the verse'.6. ibid. 132. who usually named the new born child in ancient Israel.25-26. Holzinger. 4. 264: T records the whole act like a registry clerk'. 15 is in tension with the obvious intention of the older layer of the narrative according to which Ishmael grows up in the desert and hence was also born there. what argues for P? The arguments which are advanced by the commentators. p. 'destroy'. it is clear also that v. Genesis. and how un-unified are the texts in this regard.29). Holzinger himself confirms this for Gen.11. p. not to speak of the conjectures of the exegetes! That it is only in P that the father gives the name is untenable. Gunkel. And there is no tenable argument that v. 25. A History. It is beyond dispute that the conclusion of Genesis 16 is not a unity and leaves questions open. 30.25f. because this verse should have followed immediately on Gen.. One need only look at the tensions and lack of clarity in the single chapter. is a mark of P. Genesis. Gunkel. according to the prevailing opinion. Genesis 38. 18.6 Reference is made to Gen. 9. 12ab . 13. 15. it is 'the giving of the name by the father*. 9 which nobody attributes to P.29 to the P-narrative. 13.3.2 or in Gen. .119.5 the function of which is not immediately discernible. and others.4 The verse is undoubtedly a *brief summary note about the rescue of Lot'.17. 263. One has the impression that none of these 1 Genesis. 6 Holzinger.28'. 15 belongs to a continuous P-narrative. 124. (5. p. 57. p. p. Gunkel. 4..1 Now everyone who has ever been concerned with the matter knows how difficult it is to answer the question.26: This is one of the exceptional cases in which in J it is not the mother who names the new born child: cf.22'. the use of the verb in the pi'el. But this holds as well for v. According to Dillmann. 19. 6. lib. 25. 4 Noth. are exclusively from linguistic usage. following Dillmann. One usually reckons Gen.

12. This. your servants'.10. A further argument is the use of the divine name elohim.29.1 It must belong. also Deut.13 in the J-narrative as well as in the 'J'-text of Gen. The verb is used immediately beforehand in Gen. cf. there1 Op. cit. 19. The account of the birth of Isaac in Gen. 13.29 is to be compared with the apparently corresponding expression in Gen. 9. Gen. in Gen.1. he remembers Abraham and rescues Lot because of him. 19. 13.27. and the expression 'cities of the plain' in the allegedly priestly verse.. . according to Gen. and Israel. a further note: the phrase 'then God thought of Abraham' ("ori) in Gen. 13.1. For the rest. p. It would be more appropriate to make a comparison with the sentence in the prayer of Moses in Exod. 8. One text only will be referred to: in Amos 4. 19. 32. must be brought in to support the priestly character of Gen. Gen. 19. Isaac. 21. 8. however. is ignored. First. Holzinger gives voice to the dilemma: 'Something in has provided the exegetes with a headache because the sources do not readily allow separation. One can hardly draw an argument out of all this for assigning a passage to a particular 'source'. but it is necessary to study somewhat more closely the stereotyped use of such expressions instead of short-circuiting the matter by looking for arguments for source divisions! Finally. This sort of argument becomes all the more contradictory when the *Yahwistic' verse.10 in anticipation of the destruction of Sodom! One is continually surprised at the thoughtless way in which such inept assertions are passed on without control from generation to generation. But there are problems here. which is attributed to P.1. is not all that is to be said on the question. the expression is used with reference to Rachel whose prayer for fertility God hears.2 must belong to F. on the other hand.152 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch commentators has taken the trouble to consult the concordance. which bears the deuteronomistic stamp: 'Remember Abraham. 132. in the middle of an address by YHWH about the destruction of Sodom in which the divine name YHWH is used four times.13. God 'remembers' immediately the one he will rescue. mention is made of clearly a stereotyped phrase.

25. cit. but R.4 What reasons he has for disregarding the reflections of Holzinger and others.v. It is clear once again that.p. We will come back to this later.14 in VF? Holzinger's overall judgment is: '21. and this is seldom enough the case.3 Noth's judgment is different: in his opinion 'the mention of the birth of Isaac. comes about exclusively through Gen. has inserted this divine name into P.. 'do. 4 A History. Again.B. continuous P-narrative has occasioned exegetes to assign elements to P even when there are serious reasons against. so important for the context.2 because it is 'colourless'. the chronological data. 133..p. 153 fore arguments must be found for it! For example: 'the colourless in v. P has not had a chance to speak fully and his wording has even been altered'. It is the common and prevailing opinion that the Abraham story concludes with the account of Abraham's death and burial in Gen. the search for elements of an assumed. la. 'and especially the rambling nature of the whole piece' (Gunkel). 3 Op. la looks like P. 133. but has mixed them. it becomes a mark of P.21—but is it to be insinuated that the reader has passed over or already forgotten the same expression in Gen. even paucity of presentation. Further. 17.1 The word . 2 KBL.: but was not brevity. under the influence of in v. the astonished reader learns that in v. 1 Op. a special mark of P?). no longer holds! But it is almost too easy to criticise manipulations of this sort by which many exegetes discredit their own methodology. the 'pedantic detail' (Holzinger). Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism. make' occurs 2600 times in the Old Testament. 2b is a sign of P. 18. the reader does not learn. the use of the divine name elohim. And in w. thus. by and large. cit.1-5 is one of those cases where R has not simply juxtaposed the elements from his sources.7-10. even when the consequence is that one of the most certain signs of P.3. p. 21. reference is made to Gen. s. are to the fore (N. 2b and 4 elohim is of course once more a mark of P. 13. .1b-5 by leaving out the corresponding statement of the old sources'.

When Dillmann speaks further of the 'artistic detail of the presentation'. though rather ancient in origin.6 Speiser sees in it a passage from J going back to an older tradition in which only the introductory note belongs to P. The arguments have been passed on. p. The first argument is the chronological data in v.. a new example that P has used older material available'. 173. 17 onwards.1 but this holds only from v. unaltered in essence. Macholz has written appositely of the style of Gen. since Dillmann who based himself on Knobel (1852/1860!).3 he makes it difficult for the reader to harmonize this with the image of P which the representatives of the documentary hypothesis otherwise draw. 273. 526 (see above under 3. p. is relatively quite fresh.p. 8 See above under 3.. it has 'the appearance as if P.4 Genesis 23 One of the strangest phenomena in this area is that exegetes almost unanimously attribute Genesis 23 to P.9 According to von Rad.154 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 3. See above under 2. 23: 'the alleged "P-characteristics" have their basis in the subject-matter of the text rather than in its "author"'.5. 7 Genesis. 1. esp. A further argument is 'the juridical exactness' (cf.2 For the same reason he should also reckon the extensive narrative of Genesis 24 to P. In many other cases.2). colloquial.. here. p. 6 Introduction. 1 Genesis.4 Even today the special character of Genesis 23 within the Pnarrative is underscored.3. 1875 (3rd edn). and concludes from this that one must assume older material available. on the contrary—and only here—a chronological note of introduction is used at the same time to assign the whole narrative to a particular source. not for the body proper of the narrative.. 309. 4 G.3. 3 Die Genesis. Ch. 2 Ibid. p.5 According to Fohrer the narrative 'is of material of Palestinian origin'.7 McEvenue does not follow this entirely.22. 1964. 9 Op.3. w. Procksch writes: This narrative. 5 Die Genesis..8 but notes: 'the chatty. verses of this kind are freed from any control by their context precisely because of their assumed P-character. Gunkel mentions further 'the many repetitions in the narrative'.3. style of Genesis 23 seems untypical of F. . c#. 17-18)'.

. has built in an older narrative almost unaltered. So why then is it reckoned to P? Without doubt. What then has given occasion. 17. Genesis. can hardly be maintained today in this form. cf.5 but what this in fact means for Genesis 23. he does not say. and 'precise chronology* is the real mark of P. 249. From this standpoint Genesis 23 cannot belong to P. all this 'could not remain unformulated by such a precise and conceptual theologian as P. Introduction. it is due to the pressure of traditional opinion. Op.9). one must bear clearly in mind the methodological procedure: the general opinion is that one recognizes P first and foremost by the style. p. For the whole of ch. 1972 (2nd edn Eng. to reckon this chapter to P? Once again. 182. it is because of the chronological note in the introduction. 36. nevertheless. 133. the narrative) such a prominent place in the priestly document?' His answer: 'the typical broken relationship to the material of the promise of course.). cit. often very heavy.4. who had left everything behind them for the sake of the promise. 28. theological statement.4 Fohrer says: *But everything is entirely ordered to and subordinated to the personal leanings of P. p. Macholz. replies our narrative: in death they were already "heirs" and 1 2 3 4 5 Genesis.8. A second characteristic mark of the P-passages is the strong. as von Rad alleges.1 The narrative 'is thus rather a puzzle for us from the traditio-historical standpoint'. p. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 155 against customary practice. p. But a question arises here: did the patriarchs.2 In any case it has become clear that Holzinger's decision: 'there is no possible doubt that this passage belongs to P*. Genesis 1972 (2nd edn Eng.e. there is not a trace of this in Genesis 23. He says several times: the patriarchs live "in the land of their sojournings" chs.3. because the freshness and liveliness of thrust and counter-thrust is unique within this source'. The question for von Rad is: *What theological interest— and it is this alone that is of concern—has given it (i. . remain without any share at all? No. 23. 37. the land'. but that this promise was not yet fulfilled.). 47. that the possession of the land was promised to the patriarchs.

I see no valid reasons for accepting that Genesis 23 is a part of a P-narrative. there is a series of cases in which the material in the concordance contradicts the alleged linguistic criteria. in my opinion. It would be beyond the limits of this book to advance in like detail the corresponding proofs for the remainder of the Pentateuch. of accounts of an action or an address of God. unaltered (there can be no question at all. 3. in my opinion. And so the opinion that there is a P-narrative running through the Pentateuch is. effectively contradicted.'1 This very impressive interpretation has. which are claimed to establish an even tenuous. It is obvious that no 1 Op. without throwing even the slightest theological light on it. And there is a further.156 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch no longer "sojourners". not even a hint. complementary. There is not a word. . and further.4 The priestly layer in the patriarchal story It is clear that a coherent P-narrative in the patriarchal story cannot be demonstrated. A large part of the texts or text fragments. When all is said and done. in my opinion but one basic error: from what we know elsewhere of this 'precise theologian'.28 should have departed so far from his own style as to have taken over this purely 'profane' story.p.. cannot withstand critical examination. but numerous reasons against. But God is not even mentioned in the whole of Genesis 23! It is. about these theological connections. coherent narrative.250. 6. of P being the real author). more or less entirely. in my opinion. We will add just a few remarks about the fragmentary nature of the narrative and about the arguments with which one usually disregards them. point of view: all the more detailed texts that are elsewhere ascribed to P consist. continuous. that he should leave it entirely to the reader to discern that the theological concept of the land of sojournings' used by P had been overcome and annulled at one decisive point. cit. he would certainly have expressed this in such a way that the reader could not but understand it. inconceivable that the author of texts like Genesis 17 and Exod. In particular.

they are obviously linked with each other. Elliger writes: *NB: the departure itself is simply recorded with a single sentence Ex 12.4. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 157 coherent narrative can be constructed out of the pieces usually attributed to P in the first chapters of the book of Exodus.3. First. the well known pre-emptive judgment about P serves to hush up the fact that the story lacks continuity. They do not form a continuous.1.1 Chronological notes First. But this is typical of wide areas of current pentateuchal research.2. Let us turn now to those passages in the patriarchal story which one can maintain with better reasons belong to the priestly layer of the Pentateuch. as has become clear. there is no introduction of Moses: he is suddenly there and receives assurance that the Israelites will be led out of Egypt (Exod.1 But this only means: in the case of so poor a writer as P. and how from this assumption obvious facts which speak against it are ignored or overlooked. there is a group of chronological texts which stands out 1 Die Composition. Q = P). 6. Some further reflections may be added to these.41. p. the absence of an indispensable piece of narrative is exalted to a particularly profound theological interpretation. 3. at the same time.2-8). as in 6. . Wellhausen writes on this: To expect that Moses be first introduced before he appears as a well known person. A new critical scrutiny of the arguments will only be possible when this assumption is brought into the discussion. is not justified in Q'. so trouble-free and with such nightly stealth and security does it take place!'2 And so here. And so once more. they serve to show how widespread is the assumption that there must be a coherent P-narrative. A further example: an account of the departure from Egypt is obviously missing in the assumed Pnarrative. A simple chronological note is encumbered with a narrative function. one ought not expect such banalities as that a leading person be first introduced. 2 See above under 3. 62 (for Wellhausen. They are not meant as a polemic against particular authors.3. rather. coherent narrative.


The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch

clearly and which is generally held to be characteristic of P. However, on closer study they are less unified than assumed by most. There is a remarkable lack of unity in the linguistic form in which the numbers are put together. In the numbers of the years which comprise two groups of digits, the word nxJ, 'year', occurs two/three times and usually in this form: the single digit is in the plural, and the tens and hundreds are in the singular.1 But there are deviations from this where the word 'year' is not repeated: Gen. 17.24;2 47.9, 28 (repeated once only)i 50.11, 26.3 Further, the order is different: sometimes the single digit stands in front (Gen. 11.32; 12.4; 47.28), in the remaining cases, however, at the end. In numbers over a hundred, the hundred group is generally at the front, though not always (47.9, 28). The word for the number 100 is for the most part used in the construct state, though there are variations (Gen. 23.1; 50.22, 26). Apart from this lack of unity in form, different groups of chronological details stand out clearly. A first group gives the age of a person at the time of a particular event. The structure is quite well balanced: at the beginning is the name of the person concerned preceded by the particle wow, i; then follows the age preceded by' i (son of); then come the details of the event, always in the infinitive prefixed by 3 and, where required, with a suffix.
12.4 16.16 17.24 17.25 21.5 25.26 41.46
12.4 16.16 17.24 Abram was 75 years old when he left Haran Abram was 86 years old when Hagar bore Ishmael to Abram Abraham was 99 years old when he had himself cir-

1 W. Gesenius—E. Kautzsch (trans. A.E. Cowley), Hebrew Grammar, #134 e-h. 2 In 17.25 is to be understood as one number; hence, after 1 is to be expected. 3 50.22, 26 are not generally ascribed to P.

3. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism
17.25 21.5 25.15 41.46 cumcised Ishmael, his son, was 13 years old when he was circumcised Abraham was 100 years old when his son Isaac was born to him Isaac was 60 years old when they (Esau and Jacob) were born Joseph was 30 years old when he entered the service of Pharaoh, king of Egypt.


A variation of this scheme occurs in Gen. 25.20 with the initial

When Isaac was 40 years old he married Rebekah.

A more notable variation of the scheme is 26.34; there is the initial .. ., and the event is given in the imperfect consecutive.
When Esau was 40 years old, he took as his wife... The same variation of the scheme is found in 17.1.
When Abram was 99 years old, YHWH appeared to Abram

It is noteworthy that here the name of Abraham is repeated in the subordinate sentence. This is of significance primarily because in all other cases in the patriarchal stories when a divine appearance is introduced by this verb stands at the beginning of the sentence (Gen. 12.7; 18.1; 26.2, 24; 35.9); only here does it appear in the subordinate sentence. This suggests that the detail of the age in Gen. has been added subsequently; in favour of this is that the same information about the age appears again in v. 24. The information about the age in Gen. 37.2 deviates from the scheme in many respects: it begins with the name, without however the preceding waw, 1. Then follows a circumstantial sentence with and a participle, and there is no parallel to this in the remaining chronological notes; finally, it is noteworthy that yet another circumstantial sentence follows immediately with and a following noun. The sentence,


The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch

without the information about the age, i.e. without the words would present no syntactical difficulties at all, whereas in the present form, there are syntactical problems, as well as its being singular, in comparison with the remaining chronological information in the patriarchal stories. This suggests that here also one may assume the later insertion of the note about the age. It should be noted further that the ages are given for the most part in round numbers: Abraham 75 (Gen. 12.4) and 100 (21.5), Isaac 40 (25.20) and 60 (25.26), Esau 40 (26.34), Joseph 30 (41.46).1 The 99 years of Abraham at his circumcision 17.24 are as it were a prelude to the birth of Isaac. Only the chronology of Ishmael is not given in round numbers; but it is clearly set in relationship to the circumcision and so to the birth of Isaac. It is likely that circumcision at the age of 13 has a special signification. It is without doubt a question of a definite chronological system here. Now that it has become clear that the chronologica notes are not linked by connecting passages to a coherent narrative, one will have to reckon this system, not to a particular narrative 'source', but rather to a layer of reworking or redaction. Something similar holds also for the other chronological data. First there are some texts to be mentioned which do not allow themselves to be classified readily under the patterns so far established. Gen. 16.3, in a circumstantial sentence which seems to interrupt the narrative context, gives the information that Sarah gave Hagar to Abraham so as to have descendants through her. The note about the date is in the middle of the sentence and runs in translation more or less: 'after Abraham had been living 10 years in the land of Canaan'. This agrees exactly with the rest of the chronology. Abraham is 86 at Ishmael's birth (16.16), i.e. 11 years older than at the time of his departure from Haran (12.4). But it is remarkable that this information is not given in the usual form, but within a separate sentence. Obviously the author's concern was not
1 Cf. also Exod. 7.7 where, following the same principle, Moses is reckoned as being 80 at the time of his dealings with Pharaoh; Aaron's 83 derives from this.

3. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism


this chronological information, but the main matter of the sentence: Sarah's giving over of Hagar. The formalized sounding phrase occurs often in corresponding phrases, e.g. Gen. 24.67; 25.20; 28.9; 34.8; 38.14; further 12.19; 20.12. Gen. 34.8, together with w.2 and 4, shows that it is the legal aspect that is meant. In the Jacob story also, the giving over of the servant maids to Jacob by his two wives (Gen. 30.3-4, 9) is reported almost word for word as in Gen. 16.3; it is not at all a question of something peculiar to T'. Two chronological details from the life-story of Jacob must be mentioned here. In Gen. 47.9 Jacob replies to Pharaoh's question about his age: The days of the years of my sojourning are 130 years'. The formulation with is closer to the age given at death (to be dealt with shortly) than to those already considered. In the chronological system, this information coheres with that in Gen. 47.28a, according to which Jacob lived 17 years in Egypt, so that his total age is given as 147 years (47.28b; below). For the rest, it is striking that the at the beginning of the sentence corresponds to the stereotyped details in the primeval story,12 whereas it occurs only here and in Gen. 50.22 in the patriarchal story. The next rather large group mentions the total age together with the death of the one in question. Here too a definite scheme is evident which, however, allows several variations. The simplest form is found in Gen. 11.32: first, the age introduced by then the death expressed by repeating the name and mention of the place. The information about Sarah's death in Gen. 23.1 is structured according to a similar pattern; only here, is in place of 1 One might consider if this latter phrase has the function of bringing to a conclusion the self-contained information of Sarah's life-span; would the original narrative then have begun with the words ?3 The information about the death of Isaac in Gen. 35.28 also
1 Gunkel (Genesis, p. 272), assumes that the age for circumcision 'was common among the Ishmaelite nations'. 2 Cf. Gen. 5.3-30 (passim) and 9.28; 11.11-26 (passim). 3 Cf. Gen. 11.28; Exod. 1.6; 1 Sam. 25.1.

it begins in the same way in Gen.28b. old and fulfilled in life. the reworking has separated them from each other so as to insert between them the last words and instructions of Jacob. It is clear then that the information about the deaths of Abraham. This is true too of Gen. occurs again here. but also the burial of Rebekah and Leah.28). This is more easily explained if. but these two pieces.33b. Two further texts belong immediately in this context: Gen.28a and which occurs often in the primeval story. here. The remaining texts show other marks. The formula is expanded in Abraham's case by mention of the burial place in the 'cave at Machpelah' which is awkwardly formulated. Gen. The subordinate sentence too in v. The same detailed formulation occurs several times. 47.162 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch begins with the words followed by the age. 50. i. and his sons Jacob and Esau buried him'.e. 50. after the insertion of Genesis 23 in the Abraham story. otherwise it would remain incomprehensible why the reference is missing in the case of Isaac.29-32 presents a further stage in the formation of the tradition. 49. whereas it did not in the Isaac story. the subordinate sentence is formulated in greater detail: 'then Isaac expired and died and was gathered to his kin. not only is the burial of Isaac in the cave reported by way of supplement. like the closing verse of Genesis 23. With Jacob. although Gen. a corresponding assimilation took place. The execution of Jacob's instructions in Gen. presupposes that he was buried there. Ishmael.22.1 but concludes only in 49. 26. 25. and Jacob come from the same layer of reworking. 22) which we have already met in Gen.17 (Ishmael's death) differ from the two texts just mentioned in that they begin with the words I2 the subordinate sentence is somewhat more detailed in the case of Abraham.7 (Abraham's death) and 25.7 expanded with . who are nowhere else mentioned. This suggests that one consider a subsequent expansion. 26 diverges from the other texts in that 1 Here only with instead of 2 In 25. 47.30f. somewhat shorter in the case of Isaac (35. following the parallels. belong together. The introductory (v. Isaac.12-14 also belongs to this layer of reworking. 49.

His understanding of 'narrative' is displayed. A little later he writes that the list of Ishmaelites 'presents only a phase in the life of Ishmael'. 183. Let me pick out a sentence at random: 'And thus the list of Ishmaelites formed.3. etc. Weimar (see above under 3..2 Theological' passages A second group of coherent texts in the patriarchal story which are generally attributed to P are the 'theological' pas1 Despite these deviations. How can a list be a main part of a 'history' (Geschichte. n. which I cannot comprehend. This then would be the only place where the older sources would have given such information about the life-span.2. the first main part of the history of Ishmael' (p. 179). But perhaps these notions are not to be understood as form-critical precisions? But how else could they be understood? Weimar's constructions. it is clear that there has been no uniform and consistent reworking.34 are classified respectively as 'heading' and 'narrative'. and with the prefixed .. It is remarkable that there is nothing about Jacob in the first group. seem to me to point much more to a particular system of reworking an available narrative than to an independent 'history' (Geschichte). (2) information about the entire lifespan in the context of the report of the death. All in all.2 3. Fohrer). but there is something about Esau. trans. the chronological data in the patriarchal story shows a variety of marks.2) has erected an imposing structure on these formulas. in the synthesis on p. Most of it can be divided clearly into two groups: (1) information about the age of a person at the time of a particular event.17 and 26. in the table on p. story. or divided between J and E (Procksch.).4. though they contain some correct observations. . Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 163 it repeats again the age with the information about the death. 'report'. 2 The problem of the toledot-formulas still remains opaque. I do not understand how a list can be a 'phase in the life'. it is surprising that this verse is without exception reckoned to E. 25.. e.).1 Looked at as a whole. story.g. 182. The main difficulty which I see in his work is the fact that he works with notions of 'history' (Geschichte. there is no mention of Esau's death. There are no discernible links between the two groups. Gen. where the two chronological notes.3. But this is form-critically quite incomprehensible. Here again another layer of reworking is discernible. 'narrative'. No reasons at all are given why this is considered to be the case here. on the other hand. for example. trans. Weimar often puts 'narrative' for 'history*.

17. 12). In 48. it is said that El sadday appeared to Jacob and blessed him.3-4 (5-6).5.4 and 17.8 in the phrase (an eternal possession). it would be conceivable that the author of Genesis 17 wanted to have the promises that he mentioned. 17. In 35. one should note the repetition in 28. also v.2 One can discern readily that these texts are related to each other.46-28. 48. 16) and for Ishmael (v. 4 a reference back to the 'blessing of Abraham'. 4). there is further a link between 48. 48. which correspond to the other texts. in v.6-9! 2 There is scarcely any argument in the literature for assigning 48. First. 2) corresponds exactly to what is described as blessing in the texts just mentioned. in 28.1 35. with reference back to the latter. They are Gen. and further.3.6-7 (cf. the content is again fertility and increase as well as possession of the land (v.9-13.5-6 to P.3-4. 27. one notes that they all use the divine name. the content of the blessing however follows only in the second address. *E1 sadday*. which occurs in these two places only in conection with the promise of the land. The texts stand in pairs: 28.3 and 48.3. In Genesis 17 the promise address is not introduced as blessing. 11-12.9 the two-fold divine address is again introduced as blessing. in 17.11 it occurs in the form of the formula of self-presentation 'I am El sadday' as introduction to a divine address. A number of different explanations present themselves: first.3 28. the possession of the land in v. It is noticeable that the cross reference does not cite literally. A further link is that the talk in these texts is of blessing.1 and 35. and is again fertility and increase (v.34-35 and 28. but that the passages run in parallel lines. . the promise of fertility and increase for Sarah (v. though with numerous variations in the choice of words.3 there is the actual blessing formula and in v.11-12. 20) is described expressly as blessing. understood as blessing without 1 26.3. with reference back to it.164 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch sages.4.1-4 refers back to ch. This is very remarkable in view of the fact that the content of the promise in 17. The objects of the blessing are fertility and increase in v. 3 See above under 2.3. 11) and possession of the land (v.1 is introduced as Isaac's blessing of Jacob.6-9 belong here as well.3-4 to 35. w.

as well as in the cross references).8. despite the notable differences. 11-12. And so these text do not stand out from the other promises of the land as a self-contained group (see above under 2. 35.16. 17. this is a peculiarity of this text group. and one could also argue that in Gen. one could argue that the assurance 'I will make you very. once. 16. table of beginning).) by the idea of 'covenant' in any case a clear distinction is made between the blessing for Sarah and Ishmael (vv. 20) and the covenant with Abraham and Isaac (w. 7. the connections between these four texts are clear.1 the land promise in second place testifies to a later stage of the tradition. as well as already mentioned (17. It was shown earlier that therein lies the peculiarity of these texts against others in which the sequence is reversed. and once it is repeated after them (35. 19b. In three cases 'after you' 17.12).3. once the verb stands between them. Whatever the case may be. 21!). both expressions follow immediately on each other twice (Gen.' in v.12.. 20. which obviously forms the point of departure for the whole group of texts. A further point common to this group of texts is that in all of them the promise of the land comes after the promise of increase. 48. Some further observations may be made on the position of this group of texts with the remaining promise addresses in the patriarchal story. 6 is nothing other than a pronouncement of blessing. 4. 1 See above under 2. there could be a third possibility: that originally there was talk of blessing at the beginning of ch.4)..4. but that this idea has been eclipsed and suppressed (w. the latter is not formulated as a divine address and shows some peculiarities)..9 the word ^bless' has been put in front of the whole complex of divine addresses.. but that it is missing in the actual promise address in w.2. and would only have been supplied later (in 17.. Finally. . and your seed' is found in three texts promising the land. 17.5 and 2. there is only 'to your seed' (48. Criticism of Pentate uchal Criticism 165 saying so explicitly.4) is added to 'seed'. 35..3. But then one might also suppose the idea of 'blessing' belongs only to a later layer of reworking and for that reason was first missing from Genesis 17.. very fruitful. The formulation 'to you. 28.

however. 21. his return from there (35. .2 his departure for Haran (Gen. these texts belong to the group which does not use 'seed' in this context (see above under 2.166 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 48. Finally. in particular to v. As for the promise of increase.46-28. There are the same main stages which in another layer of theological reworking are characterized by the theme 'guidance'. and the 1 See above under 2. that these four texts are related to each other. of El sadday) accompanies him on his way.4.5 for more on Gen. 12 There is no account of any other circumcisions in the patriarchal story. 17. tables). On the one side.9-12 involve a change of name of the patriarch concerned.3. 17.23-26. are synthesized in a characteristic way.1 while on the other new elements have taken their place. yet another link is that the two divine addresses in Genesis 17 and 35. The purpose of the author of Genesis 17—perhaps more accurately of these parts of Genesis 17—was obviously not to report a continuous passage of the patriarchal story. and the males who belonged to the *house' of Abraham in Gen.4).10).5). 27. They show how the blessing of God (more accurately. after the account of the actual circumcision of Abraham.9-13). Ishmael. There can scarcely be any doubt. It is notable that the plural form 'nations' and 'peoples' occur only in this group. the different promise elements. therefore.4. in particular the notion of God's 'covenant' with Abraham. but the group is not to be detached entirely from the historical process of tradition of the promise addresses. It is remarkable. that circumcision as sign has not been carried further. Their intention is obviously to point in a definite theological direction.2. The special place of the texts then is apparent. where there is reference back to Gen. but rather to anchor the prescription about circumcision in God's covenant with Abraham. The remaining passages are all concerned with Jacob. And this parallel is clearly intended. 17. which are found in various forms in the patriarchal story. 2 See above under 2. the only other note about circumcision concerns Isaac in Gen.5) and Jacob (35.3. and circumcision as the visible expression of the covenant relationship. Abraham (17.

generally.3.9). the second blessing is given only after the return to the ground of the promised land. In particular it is striking that this group of texts has no part in the framing and shaping of the patriarchal story as a self-contained larger unit.2 nor the assurance of mediatorship of the 1 See above under 3.1) and Jacob (35. they are introduced with . 17. But this does not touch the many promise addresses to Abraham which belong to other layers of tradition and reworking. 3. The departure for Haran is already under the blessing.3 The function of the priestly layer This last conclusion touches the question of the function which this group of texts has within the patriarchal story as a whole. An important direction is given in the Abraham story in Genesis 17. The impression that arises from this is that of a complement and a new emphasis of an already existing narrative. like the divine addresses to Abraham (Gen.4. But it is notable even so that. Neither the assurance of guidance. But this exhausts their contribution to the shaping and interpretation of the patriarchal story as a whole. new interpretation which takes its place by the earlier one. 2 See above under 2. These texts give the Jacob story a separate.1 At the same time it is evident this layer of reworking has a quite characteristic interest in the figure and journey of Jacob. And further. It has already been shown that these texts cannot be part of a continuous priestly Jacob story.2.3.4. are not reckoned to P. presupposing the journey down to Egypt. which runs through all three patriarchal stories.3-4). One question further may be raised: is there a connection between this 'priestly' layer of redaction and the divine addresses in the Isaac story? The latter. and the last mention of blessing looks back.2-5 which point at least to an advanced stage in the process of the formation of the tradition which is close to the priestly texts. . The emphases in detail lie in a different direction from those in the 'guidance' layer. there are many details in Gen. But these questions require farther study. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 167 end of the journey in Egypt (48. 26.

W. because it embraces only a partial aspect (primarily the Jacob stories). Ibid. 1963. At the same time one can discern a definite line of interpretation in this group as a whole. Isaac. See above under 2. Also.23-25. However. 17.1 which has proved itself in a special way to be an element binding the arrangement together. See above under 2.3 there is reference back to God's 'covenant' with Abraham. which in the present context indicates the change of fortune pointing toward the imminent rescue of the Israelites. With these two texts then a deliberate tie of the patriarchal and exodus traditions is achieved.4 one can recognize clear echoes of Gen. however.2-9.7. See above under 2. but that on the other hand there are isolated references back to the patriarchal story in the exodus tradition. are found in these texts. a quite unique type of theme is evident. But it is by no means the dominant interpretation within the patriarchal story. Gesammelte Aufs&tze.5 For the rest.7-8. 1954 = Gottes Offenbarung.5. Cf. there are again those which are generally reckoned to the priestly document: In Exod. with the broad expansion of the formula 'I am YHWH' and with the 'recognition statement'6 in v. A few further remarks may be added here about the combination of the patriarchal story with the traditions that follow. Zimmerli. pp.5 and 2. Erkenntnis Gottes nach dem Buche Ezechiel.168 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch blessing for others. We had concluded earlier that on the one hand the lack of connection between the individual complexes of tradition is striking. it strikes one immediately that in the further course of the narrative there is no cross-reference of this sort to be found. The exodus event 1 2 3 4 5 6 See above under 2. 41-119. 7.7.2 Beside the texts formulated in the deuteronomic style. in the divine address in Exod.5. and in addition it does not share in the overall arrangement of the story. 24) We had earlier expressed the conjecture that one might see here a link with Gen. . 6. in a link piece. The 'priestly' texts then stand out in relief within the patriarchal story as an independent group with a number of peculiarities.4. 17. and Jacob (v. 2.

Further. coherent narrative. so that the result is a continuous. but only.9-13. 17).5.3. 3. Nor are there connections between the chronological notes and the theological texts. Study of these texts demonstrates that the arguments for assigning them to P (arguments which are almost entirely absent in more recent literature) cannot. new interpretation of the patriarchal story. 35. beside the episodic. either stylistic or in content or in their particular setting in the present text. The thesis of a coherent P-narrative in the current research depends for the most part on the assumption that certain small pieces of text are to be reckoned to P which establish the connection between the texts just mentioned. the goal of the journey. that YHWH had assured to the patriarchs. withstand critical examination. though they do not use the idea 'covenant'. 1. and the occupation of the land.4 No priestly narrative but a layer of priestly reworking Let us draw together our reflections on the 'priestly document' in the patriarchal story: a continuous P-narrative cannot be demonstrated. only that in Genesis 17 the age of Abraham (w. 48. give no indication that it is the land.3-4).4. there are several groups of chronological notes. 27. in the majority of cases. there is a considerable number of assertions which a simple glance at the . one of which synthesizes the divine promises to Abraham in a new way and puts them under the key word 'covenant' (Gen. the wandering in the desert. The texts generally claimed for this narrative thread are to be judged very differently. 25) at the time of their circumcision is mentioned. They mention partly the age of a person at the time of a particular event.46-28. indeed. partly the total life-span with the information about the death of the person concerned. a small group of'theological' texts stand out. a single tie of the patriarchal and exodus traditions under the aspect of YHWH's covenant with the fathers. they are linked with Genesis 17 in a particular way. while the others all have to do with Jacob (Gen. 24) and Ishmael (v. There are no discernible connections between these groups. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 169 itself. We find in these priestly texts therefore no reworking covering the whole of the Pentateuch. First.

19. despite the lack of any discernible relationship to each other. how do the reflections made here stand in relationship to the prevailing assumption of continuous 'sources' or layers of 'sources' in the Pentateuch? The traditio-historical approach requires that 'sources' of . the alleged P use of the verb in the pi'el. This pulls the mat from under any assumption of a coherent P-narrative. to a large extent support each other. 21. on the one hand. i.13 as well as in the J-text in 13. 3. which is found also in the immediately related 'J' piece in 18. At most.17 and in the 'E-passage' 20. which are claimed for P. Even when one assumes that the remaining groups of texts mentioned are all to be reckoned to one 'source'. and of the Moses and exodus traditions on the other. they still do not produce a coherent narrative. I underscore once again as typical examples: the appendage 'Abraham's wife' in Gen. there is the fact that traces of a comprehensive reworking of the Pentateuch as a whole appear only in a relatively late stage of the process of the formation of the tradition. and further.e. of a continuous narrative which once existed independently on its own. 'destroy* in Gen. one could attribute them all to the same layer of reworking which has complemented and interpreted in a particular way a text already available. 16. But no proof is forthcoming that they are constituent parts of a 'source' within the meaning of the documentary hypothesis.170 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch concordance proves to be false. there have been different reworkings of the patriarchal story which are consistent and of theological significance. because the texts. Examples could be multiplied at will.10.18. The refutation of arguments such as these sets up a sort of chain reaction. hence.5 Synthesis It has been demonstrated that. In my opinion. but which occurs also in the 'J-passage' 12.2b.29 which is used in the immediately preceding J-narrative in 19.1 which is held to belong to P. we are faced with the question. the claim for P of the expression 'at the particular time' in Gen. and that on the grounds of 'proofs' from linguistic usage. critical examination shows cogently that these connecting pieces are not to be claimed for P.14.

we have subjected current pentateuchal study to critical questioning directed to the tenability of its arguments. side by side with a later priestly source. build and are brought together into larger outlines which cover the whole theme of the Pentateuch. Let us focus once more on this problem area: the documentary hypothesis first appeared as a convincing answer to the question of the literary unity of the Pentateuch. there were several older sources. one could divide among these different sources individual narratives which occurred several times. The endeavour to establish these sources as accurately as possible and to work out what was peculiar to each. themselves collections of very different kinds of material. different religious and moral concepts. revealed . namely the Tahwist'. its unity. and the arguments by which they were supported in the first place have lost their tenability. closer attention reveals very soon that there is no such basic agreement among the majority of exegetes in any single essential question. Though the thesis is almost universally maintained that there is basically general agreement about the delimitation of his work. The examination of the reasons for these divergences and differences of opinions shows that they arise out of a profound methodological uncertainty. it seemed convincing that. its *built-in system'. and the persuasive power of its arguments. different historical presuppositions. The assumption of several parallel and originally independent sources. i. In particular. it is on this that the larger units'. hence. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 171 this sort appear as the next logical stage in the formation of the tradition. seemed to answer plausibly the greater part of the literary questions. The attempt to carry through this 'crosscheck' ran into a serious difficulty very soon. The deci sive causes of this uncertainty are the fact that certain basic theses are maintained.e. and so on. differences in the use of the divine name and other linguistic usage. It is because our studies hitherto have not led to such outlines that we have undertaken the 'crosscheck'. It proved almost impossible to acquire from current study any sort of clear picture of that source.3. the determination of his character and his intention. even though their presuppositions are no longer correct. and of a redaction that fitted them together. generally regarded as the most important.

because since Wellhausen the 'fragmentary* hypothesis has been superceded. This has led time and again to the questions whether one should postulate new sources or sub-sources.. nevertheless the 'elohistic fragments' are expressly understood as parts of an 'originally independent written source with its own composition technique and independent line of proclamation'. 'growths' or whatever. The question whether the individual sources have been fully preserved has played a special role in these discussions. cit.W. namely the study of the process of formation of the tradition. And even when today one has largely renounced any wish to reconstruct the Elohist completely. but never to be able to distribute the entire material of the Pentateuch among them. 'glosses'. Wolff. . or ascribe relatively large sections of texts to redactors. It is evident at the same time how decisions already made have largely prevented an evaluation of considerations about the text in any other way than that which the documentary hypothesis has prescribed.1 That the doublets or complements at various places in the Pentateuch could be independent of each other is thus not given serious consideration. When it is recognized that individual texts belong together. The changing fate of the TDlohist' is a clear example of the problem. or to reduce by virtue of necessity the demands of the criteria for source division. Even though many exegetes have clearly not 1 H.2 The problems of source division have intensified notably with the rise of form-criticism and the discipline arising out of it.1. A survey of the history of modern pentateuchal study shows that it has always been faced with the dilemma: to lay down the strictest criteria for the unity of the individual sources. then they must also belong to a 'source'. 2 Those who contest the Elohist are the exceptions here. 136. p. The discussion about the delimitation of the sources very soon became a highly esoteric game in which the theory as such was never called into question—and so the situation has remained up to the present.172 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch very quickly the difficulties and the problem area of this undertaking. or to explain them as not belonging to sources and so as 'additions'. see above under 3. op.

'None of the views mentioned [i.3. the question arose. . further problems come into the perspective. One usually reckons with a stage of oral tradition in which the texts to a large degree more or less acquired their form. After von Rad had demonstrated the independence of the individual complexes of tradition within the Pentateuch and their general independence of each other. been many an alteration in the presuppositions. The question of the literary unity of the text which now lies before us has long since ceased to be the point of departure from which one approaches the Pentateuch. But because one can speak of 'sources' only from the earliest time when the text was fixed in writing.1 But when the question is put in the context of the process of the formation of the tradition. Thus. Von Rad 1 So Fohrer. The first basic alteration is that the Pentateuch is no longer regarded primarily as a literary product.lll. First. that alterations in the statement of the question are felt to be merely problems within this theory. at least for Old Testament scholarship in the German-speaking area. a much greater self-sufficiency is attached to the individual narrative or tradition. the recent attempts to contest or modify the documentary hypothe sis] are really any more than a warning to make sure once more of the strength and reliability of the foundations which the more recent documentary hypothesis has laid for the separation of the pentateuchal sources'. Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 173 become conscious of this. pentateuchal study and documentary hypothesis have become so inseparable. p. Introduction. nevertheless. the only explanation is that. this means that the authors of the individual written sources made use by and large of material already given shape. quite new questions arise of which classical pentateuchal criticism was not aware in this form: what part did the authors of the sources play in the shaping of these texts? did they simply take them over? work them over? reshape them? formulate them anew in their own language? are they really writers at all? or only collectors? It is evident that the understanding of the authors of the sources has run into a severe crisis. there has. what part did the authors of the sources play in the composition of the present whole. Many exegetes are not aware of this and it has not left any discernible trace in the literature.e. but not a question addressed to it.

. Fohrer. he speaks of'connecting pieces. Kaiser and others had already assigned these not to the Yahwist.174 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch himself assumed that all complexes of tradition had been fixed in essence before they were taken over by the Yahwist.2 But that would mean that the question of the characteristic marks of the Yahwist would have to be directed in essence to the final form of the Pentateuch as a whole.1: Thus. 18. He writes of the two cultic stories of Bethel (Gen.. for example. essentially self-contained. 32) that 'the part of the Yahwist in [their] composition. only as the work of the Yahwist'. On the other hand he writes: The Yahwist took up the material which had broken free from the cult and preserved it in the firm grip of his literary composition'... Gen. pp.g. in the exegesis of 18.' still discernible. But Noth. 67f. but to 'G'. and consequently the 'fulfillment and penetration of that ancient story material by the Yahweh faith. On the contrary. 53ff.1. which were available to him. yet in the summarizing 'epilogue' to the preceding cult story of Mamre. is very probably. "The Form Critical Problem'. And so once again other criteria must be sought for discerning and characterizing the Yahwist.2233. 28) and Penuel (Gen. 2 See above under 1.. the Yahwist has 1 Von Rad. This process of the transition of the material at one time stamped by the cult into new literary' arrangements is then described in detail..1 and many exegetes have more or less followed him expressly. and there is very often talk there of the Yahwist without his part in the development becoming readily discernible. in one most vivid sentence about place and time. as for the literary arrangement. of other cult stories it is said expressly that 'we can regard the blending of [the] sacral traditions with the Yahweh faith'. which the Yahwist has inserted between the old narrative passages'.. On the one hand he ascribed to the Yahwist the final arrangement of the complexes of tradition... In the face of this situation then it is no wonder that statements in this area remain as imprecise and vague as they are today. clearly standing out from the narrative context. 18ff. even with von Rad. the Yahwist is not mentioned. a remarkable imbalance in evaluating the Yahwist. There is evident here.. he is occasionally claimed for narrative details: e.

On the contrary. . examining seriously and reflecting methodically on their compatibility with the assumptions and statements of the question of the 'classical' documentary hypothesis. from such a statement of the question. 1 See above under 1. that modern pentateuchal study has accepted more and more the statements of the question and insights of form-criticism and the traditio-historical method without.Jl It becomes quite clear from all this. speak against the currently reigning view of pentateuchal sources within the meaning of the documentary hypothesis. 2 See also Westermann's critical survey.1 and 3. .2. I see numerous important reasons which..3. across the larger units or the complexes of tradition. 569ff.2 The interpreter who tries to approach the texts of the Pentateuch with a consistent statement of the question from the point of view of traditiohistorical criticism finds now that the documentary hypothe sis opens up many more questions than it is able to answer. pp. to the present synthetic whole. I cannot at present discern what contribution the documentary hypothesis makes to the question of the formation of the Pentateuch from the smallest units (and their pre-history). Criticism of Pentateuchal Criticism 175 brought us right into the picture. however. I think. Genesis 1-11.

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to which the essential arrangement of the Pentateuch is ascribed. For as long as one does not study this intermediary stage thoroughly and does not take appropriate account of it in the question of the formation of the Pentateuch. it must appear very remarkable that a very intensive and varied theological reworking can be discerned in the patriarchal stories which we have chosen as examples of such a larger unit. 1 See above under 1. there is a notable absence of cross-references between these larger units'. It is precisely this that is the express goal of the traditio-historical method since it appeared. Above all.Chapter 4 CONCLUSIONS AND CONSEQUENCES The purpose of the present study is to clarify a little more the problem of the process of transmission in the Pentateuch by directing attention to the hitherto neglected stage of the formation of the tradition between the 'smallest units' on the one hand and the overall picture of the Pentateuch on the other. . These 'sources' are for the most part regarded as theological works.2. then one cannot acquire a coherent view of the history of its growth. A result of our study is that the mutual independence of these complexes is considerably greater than has been generally accepted to date. but that this is not continued in the following larger units which deal with the stay in Egypt.1 We might take then some observations of von Rad as our point of departure. He has shown that the Pentateuch consists of a number of complexes of tradition which are clearly separate from each other. each of which has obviously had its own pre-history. Hence. This is particularly remarkable at the level of the generally accepted 'older sources' of current pentateuchal study.

how do the literary-critical method in the form of the documentary hypothesis as it reigns . the *Yahwist'. ill-defined consensus about him. and especially of over-arching interpretative evidence. On the contrary. These remarks must of necessity be understood as critical questions addressed to the currently reigning 'documentary hypothesis'. concrete detail. because it is scarcely possible in the present state of pentateuchal study to find any sort of agreement about the 'sources' that would enable us to answer our question. 'sources'. according to which the Pentateuch is assembled out of several parallel. and especially the picture which it presently presents of the *Yahwist'. There is today scarcely anything more than a general. is another aspect of the same problem.178 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch the exodus. Our observations are scarcely in harmony with this. we might perhaps gain better insights into the connections between the individual larger units within the Pentateuch. a first answer is given to the question raised in the introduction to this study. That the continuity of the 'priestly document' is greatly overestimated and often supported by arguments which cannot withstand critical scrutiny. We tried to establish by means of a 'crosscheck' of the documentary hypothesis whether. especially in wha concerns its chief source. there have been alterations in the state of the question which have quietly taken place since the advent of the form-critical and traditio-historical methods. the documentary hypothesis proves itself to be extremely contradictory.1 Dissent from the documentary hypothesis Hence. the documentary hypothesis. a highly problematic. undertaking. there is a characteristic lack of continuity. however. a consensus. and which have scarcely been reflected at all. and in many respects. and the wandering in the desert. important. must be regarded as. namely. the result is that for the critical observer. a quite anachronistic. directing the question in this way. 4. each with its own profile and own thought pattern. continuous. But this check was rendered extraordinarily difficult. methodologically. Sinai. to which there is no agreement among the exegetes in any single. In particular. On the contrary.

in recent pentateuchal study. However. cf. W. Conclusions and Consequences 179 today. and the traditio-historical method. means an alteration in the methodological approach. pp. stand in relationship to each other? When one tries to follow the gradual formation of the Pentateuch starting from the 'smallest units' right up to its present final stage. Exodus. The assumption of 'sources' within the meaning of the documentary hypothesis can no longer make any contribution today to the understanding of the formation of the Pentateuch. so that the difference between the two must again be expressly brought to mind.1. 63-64. a particular hypothesis. one must say that in numerous cases plausible literary-critical observations become problematic only when one tries to ascribe the elements of the text to particular 'sources'.1 In any case. On the contrary.4. and quite obviously even when there are no clear criteria favouring one source or the other. and it must be repeated again here.H. Many of the observations made about the texts since the rise of the literary-critical method retain their validity and still require an answer. one does not encounter the 'sources' in the sense of the documentary hypothesis. Literary criticism of different passages of the Pentateuch has separated out individual units of text. What is to be questioned rather is a particular conclusion of the literary-critical work on the Pentateuch. . namely what is known as the 'documentary hypothesis'. dissent from the documentary hypothesis. as an (unintentional) example. and when one tries to allege the currently reigning notion of 'sources' to answer the questions raised by traditio-historical study. this hypothesis has almost been identified with the literary-critical method as such. that it is not at all a question of contesting in any way the legitimacy of literary-critical statements of the question. It has already been underscored. It is by no means obvious that these units are now to be joined together and considered as constituent parts of 'sources' which run through the whole Pentateuch. Schmidt.2. then there is no answer. see above under 3. This conclusion must be protected from possible misunderstanding. Fohrer expresses 1 The terminology of the discipline is significant: one assigns the text to a source. while maintaining the literary-critical position.

Similarly Fohrer: 'Indeed. has in fact long since lost its force because 'to start with'. although it has long since become clear that a self-contained picture of the 'sources'. that from the traditio-historical point of view. p..1 But it is legitimate to contest even this basic principle. to start with. as the documentary hypothesis demands. EvTh 31 (1971) 579-88 = Gesammelte Studien zum Alien Testament 2. the assumption of continuous 'sources' in the Pentateuch is only justified when. it is long since clear. 2 See above under 1. And so a variety of literary observations is made and divisions of the text undertaken without the exegete being sure to which 'source' the individual elements might belong. It too. is no longer to be gained. must stand'. one must in many cases concentrate on individual narratives and other such 'smallest units'. has shown that this is not the case.. 3 Von Rad has seen this clearly. in my opinion. it does not in any way appear as if we are going to arrive at an analysis of the individual sources in which we might divide the whole of the material in some satisfactory way among the written sources' (580 = 190). This first part of the conclusion to our inquiry could contribute to freeing pentateuchal study from a realm of hypothesis which has turned out to be an increasingly heavy burden. 1973. 1964. from a form-critical or a traditio-historical point of view.3. it is to be flatly denied. The basic principle already mentioned earlier must be set against it. the literary-critical separation of the different strands. be it that the basic principle cited agrees with exegetical practice or not. A great amount of exegetical ingenuity is still being spent on the problem of source division. it presents itself as the most plausible answer to the questions which the final form of the text raises. and put the question of belonging to one of the 'sources' only at a later stage of the exegesis. 189-98: 'So as things stand today. 4. that the Hexateuch contains more material that does not belong to a source and that the narrative threads contain more disconnected narrative .3 And even if one might hope to come to convincing 1 Uberlieferung und Geschichte des Exodus.180 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch aptly the current situation: It is a non-negotiable basic principle of the anlaysis of the Hexateuch that.2 But our inquiry. pp. But. namely. at the end of the path of the traditio-historical inquiry. 'Beobachtungen an der Moseerz&hlung Ex 1-14'. and especially the 'crosscheck' of the documentary hypothesis.

4. it is evident yet again that the Abraham. 'Confessional Reformulation in the Exilic Period'. Schmid has also argued for a late dating of the Yahwist (May 1975: Fachgruppe Altes Testament in der Wissenschaftlichen Gesellschaft fur Theologie).5. Das grosse Schweigen als Folge der "alten Pentateuchquellen"'. CanJT 13 (1967) 225-32.' (see p. but in my opinion it is chasing after a phantom.E. Schult. DBAT Beiheft 1. 4..1 only shifts these concerns on to another plane. 'Die Ehen der Erzvater'. . and that very obviously. 'Argumenta e Silentio.1975. 23-34. 6 n. The conclusions remain to be sketched briefly and the consequences to be pondered.2 The 'larger units' in the Pentateuch The main purpose of this study. Tentateuchal Criticism: No Clear Future'. The work of arrangement and interpretation which makes use of the divine promise addresses in particular has allowed this relative independence to remain stuff than the documentary hypothesis in its strictest form was willing to concede. B. Rendtorff zum 10. 1 J.1 The patriarchal story The patriarchal story which.4. This concern about source division presents exegetes from devoting proper attention to other questions of the exegesis of the text and of the understanding of its history. Rather its aim is to achieve a methodological access to the understanding of the formation of the Pentateuch in the stage between the 'smallest units' and the overall presentation. VT 22 (1972) 448-59. And the newly enkindled discussion about the dating of the sources of the Pentateuch. Van Seters. especially of the 'Yahwist'. Conclusions and Consequences 181 conclusions in Genesis or in the first half of the book of Exodus. and Jacob stories each has its own history of formation and its own independent profile. First.2. as an example of a 'larger unit' within the Pentateuch we have subjected to detailed analysis.H.. H. Isaac. 'Edom in alttestamentlichen Texten der Makkabaerzeit'. proves to be a complex and at the same time a rounded unit. Diebner/H. is not to refute the documentary hypothesis. DBAT 8 (1975) 11-17. in Festschrift fur R. however. DBAT 8 (1975) 2-10.Wagner. this is no longer possible from the Sinai pericope on at the very latest. 2). N.

This is evident.182 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch intact.4).18).14) and. 26. the genre 'Sage' undoubtedly needs a renewed and more nuanced study. See above tinder 2.14). But here too the function of a framework is clearly recognizable. Only a few problems will be indicated here which present themselves anew. study can apply itself to the numerous individual questions without having to reflect constantly on the supposed connections with the other complexes of tradition in the Pentateuch.2. the different formulations show that the Abraham and Jacob stories were first joined together (12. only at a later stage of the reworking and arrangement. rather a way has been opened to deal with them more intensively. 28. for example.4.15-18.4. 26.18. It is given to Abraham (12. . in the framework of the Isaac story with the two divine promise addresses in Gen. to Isaac (26.4. The promise of the blessing for others dominates here. 22.4) and to Jacob (28. the Abraham and Isaac stories (22. especially in the closing promise address in Gen.241 and in the arrangement of the Jacob story as a 'guidance' narrative. The traditio-historical problems of the patriarchal story are not thereby finally solved. First. 22. In the Jacob story.3. See above tinder 3.2-5 and 26.3 In the Abraham story the divine promise addresses play a comparatively larger role than in the two other stories and have penetrated more deeply into the narrative context. and the assurance of abundant descendants at the end.4 This belongs as well to the passages which bind the three patriarchal stories with one another and fit them together into a whole. the assurance of blessing which accompanies him on his way has been added in another layer of tradition.3.2 In both cases the promise of the land is emphasized at the beginning. But now that the independence and complexity of the patriarchal story has become so evident. See above under 2. It must be more carefully taken into account that the stories (Sagen) in the patriarchal story are of an entirely different kind and have a different pre-history from the texts of the primeval story on 1 2 3 4 See above under 2.4.

I have deliberately tried to avoid preliminary decisions about whether individual texts belong to particular 'sources'. one would pursue more precisely the connections between the divine promise addresses and their context. And texts which are difficult to classify. In particular.3 They were added anyway by a redactor.4. 17 were not there. and so did not merit any thorough consideration. Kessler on the 'cross references' offers further pointers 1 Cf. 14. but in such a way that he was forced to span certain texts. in dealing with the promise addresses in ch. the collection and arrangement of the patriarchal stories. 2 See above under 3. . A new beginning may be made here. 2. can be simply studied and evaluated in their own right. and it can.2 set into relief the profound differences between texts like Gen.1020 and Genesis 24 without being forced to look for proofs which would assign them to sources. And further. 4 And thus. to take up an example already mentioned. study can turn itself to the questions of the structure of the patriarchal story under different presuppositions. and likewise again chs. 22 among the narratives designated by him as 'Yahwistic' (Theology of the Old Testament. pp. 20-22. 1. In the case of the *Yahwistic' Abraham story. Conclusions and Consequences 183 the one hand and the complex of traditions with which the book of Exodus begins on the other. but I am very conscious that my own insights are only a beginning.1 Thus study can free itself from the necessity of having to assign the individual narratives and stories (Sageri) each to a particular 'source'-author. he had to carry on as if chs. particular groups of texts were not assigned to the priestly layer. Finally.2. the work of R. one must investigate in more precise detail than has been possible within the limits of this study. 3 Von Rad has included Gen. In this area. In doing so. 170f). Genesis 1-11. 12. 18fF.2. pp.4 thereby leaving the way open for as unprejudiced analysis as possible. The reflections presented above still leave many questions open in this regard. 15. Westermann. there was the very awkward situation in the Abraham story whereby the exegete had to look for criteria under which the individual narratives had been collected and arranged. like Genesis 14 and 23.

10-22) has undergone a very varied and multi-faceted interpretation by means of the divine promises.2. 28.2 The other 'larger units' Something corresponding holds for the other larger units within the Pentateuch. A survey of recent literature shows that for a long time now there have been numerous publications which have been concerned with the particular problems of these larger units.1. in their present form.1 a question of course which is linked with those already mentioned. which do not arise in the same way for other larger units within the Pentateuch. the divine promise addresses carry such weight. put this side by side with other narratives in which. step by step. from the smallest units to this larger unit. 22-32]) has remained quite untouched? Can one simply maintain the interpretation of von Rad. Hence.23-33 [Eng. about the function of these two cultic stories in the structure of the Jacob story?2 How do the composition of the patriarchal story and its interpretation by means of the divine promise addresses stand in relationship to each other? It is clear that the questions touched on here. 2 See above under 2. 32. 4. so plausible at first sight. . throw light on the path. answers to them would first promote a better understanding of the patriarchal story as an entity. yet they are mentioned in an insertion into its context (13.1. whereas the event at Pnuel (Gen. to which others could be added.3-4) with an emphasis to which there is no parallel in the patriarchal story? Can one. This is especially the case with 1 See above under 2. To give but two examples: how is one to understand the following: the narrative in Gen. without more ado.184 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch and suggestions.1. are concerned with specific problems in the patriarchal story. 12.10-20 ('the ancestress in danger*) has no divine address and so no mention of the divine promises to Abraham. but have not been tied to the context in any comparable way? And how does one evaluate this: the cult etiology of Bethel (Gen. and so allow one to discern the guiding principles and methods of reworking.

Num. can certainly be related to Gen.4. Festschrift von Rad. p. 12. And the single occurrence in the book of Numbers within the Balaam oracles. 5 Steck.. 1971. pp. op. Genesis 1-11. yet another aspect becomes clear: many studies on the primeval story limit themselves entirely to it. And a further remark: 'the universal perspective of the primeval story which the Abraham story achieves in (Gen. . according to our reflections. Westermann. 12) v. 12. a whole. cit. 1972. 12.3a (despite the notable change of the verbs) but not so to the words of 12. 2-11 is.g. then it means that.64ff. but only with it. because Gen. which is meant to encompass all that is typical of the human condition. and interpret it accordingly as a unit in itself. however. 3'5 is often alleged as a reference back to the patriarchal story to the primeval story. 12. Steck: 'Gen. 4 So Westermann.3 is one of those passages which bring the patriarchal stories together as a whole. 6 I think that H. 1-11 alone.1 it has always been the object of studies which have focussed entirely on the problems in these chapters.2 nevertheless. underscore its internal coherence. The express connection is made merely by a few remarks about Gen.32 shows no connection with Gen. but further reflection is required about its connection with the other units. the primeval story has indeed been tied to the patriarchal story.K. 12. 550. p. 525-54 (esp.3 or not at all. 24. on the basis of Gen. 3 E. cf. 2 E.6 This could be a clue to the simultaneous growth of 1 Cf.g. Wolff has unintentionally shown this in 'The Kerygma of the Yahwist'. in the intent of the Yahwist. about which Wolff insists 'the real message of the Yahwist is to be seen only in 12. 7.1-3. At the same time. pp. O. Genesis 1-11. but which has no counterpart in the larger units that follow. Probleme biblischer Theologie. with all the possibilities and depreciation of human existence.1-3 und die Urgeschichte des Jahwisten'.W.'. also Westermann.4 The independence of the primeval story as a larger unit has long since been recognized and stressed. If this is correct. in 'Genesis 12. 549-50. they take it for granted that the layers of tradition discernible there must be regarded as constituent parts of the pentateuchal sources. the only occurrence of the key-word 'blessing' in the whole of the book of Exodus in Exod. 549).3b. p. Ertrage der Forschung. pp.3b'. Conclusions and Consequences 185 the primeval story... Steck. rather the opposite. Genesis 1-11.9.3b and is in fact not a continuation of the promise given there.

326). (hip'il). mainly in respect of assigning passages to their sources. The remaining 'nucleus'. we can for the most part latch on to what has already been said. 1973. S. 2 Cf. occurs only seldom elsewhere in the Pentateuch. interpreting.186 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch these two larger units independently of their connection with the following units.23-25 marks the turning point in the first section of the call of Moses. 2. Herrmann.31). pp. EvTh 31 (1971) 579-88 = Gesammelte Studien zum Alien Testament 2. expresses very clearly—even if in part—that the section is an entity to be considered in itself and that it has in some way to do with divine worship. There is obviously a mind at work here. G.31 the Israelites 'believe' the message that Moses has received and bow before it—just as later. borrowed from the liturgical realm.1. is then studied again. 'Beobachtungen an der Moseerzghlung Exodus 1—14'. which has given this passage its own stamp. "Mose'. 189-98. von Rad.2. The analysis of the Sinai periocope usually begins with the speedy. 4 It is remarkable that the verb used in these passages. when the definitive rescue is announced to them (12. EvTh 28 (1968) 301-28 (esp. In 4.3 Exod.4 And so it is evident once more that the reflections made here have no counterpart in other larger units. and unanimous.4.1 Since Pedersen. This notion. and thereby further cut 1 See above under 1. But this question needs further careful attention. arrangement of the unit. the question of the special character of Exodus 1-14(15) has been there. though from the most divergent points of view. planning.27b) and they finally see this rescue with their own eyes (14. Pentateuchal study takes for granted that the Sinai pericope is an entity in itself. Even if the supposition that the unit is in essence a liturgical text has receded into the background. 3 See above under 3. theologically interpretative. nevertheless its peculiar literary character and relative internal coherence is continually underscored. God takes heed of the Israelites. arranging. exclusion of the parts belonging to the 'priestly document'. cramped together into a few chapters.2 Once again we may take up the reflections on a deliberate. . With regard to the other larger units.

157-58. a further problem must be considered: the decision about where the texts which precede and follow the Sinai pericope belong cannot be separated from the question of the Sinai pericope in its present place. The discussion of the 'covenant theology* is certainly a step forward because it attempts to throw light on the traditiohistorical problems of the Sinai pericope under the aegis of a theme.3 It must be emphasized. 1969. This holds particularly for the still quite open question.6. Fritz. whether and how far these texts belong together in one larger unit. The task that now lies before us is to put the question more concretely of the texts in the Sinai pericope. and that many exegetes would not find it all that difficult to renounce it in this area. how does one explain the process by which these texts came together. This brings up a partial aspect of the question. been torn apart again.g. These 1 Cf. see above under 1. The advantage of this could well be that source division (prescinding from T') has thus exhausted itself.4. . Conclusions and Consequences 187 up. what were the intentions and ideas at work. V. and then when the different parts of the Pentateuch were assembled.4. Here. Perlitt. how the larger units have been brought together and finally assembled into the whole which is the present Pentateuch.1 But this procedure is particularly unsatisfactory here because the results are always rather uncertain and at the same time scarcely give the interpreter access to fresh points of view. The problems of the narratives of Israel's stay in the desert have already been outlined. that it is necessary to free oneself from the hypothetical realm and the bonds of source division. pp.4 and 2. 3 E. and what systems of arrangement are discernible. Bundestheologie im Alien Testament. and to put the question. 2 See above tinder 1.2 Here too there are indications that this group of texts is to be understood as an independent larger unit. L. the attempt to work out an isolated 'Yahwistic' desert tradition must of necessity cover over more problems than it can solve. It is not at all being said that all texts which deal with the events of Israel's stay in the desert must have at one time been joined together. over against recent attempts. But the notion of larger units' must not be overdrawn.

They are much more readily recognizable as an independent larger unit with its own particular profile.188 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch questions then must be examined very carefully and without previous commitment. The narratives about the occupation of the land in east Jordan also contain a double problem. It is similar with other larger units: the 1 See above under 1. One must always be ready to grant that single pieces of material. But let it be said once again: it must not be the case that all texts of the Pentateuch have been constituent parts of a larger unit before the final arrangement of the whole. if at all. But it is always very awkward when one has to reckon with pieces that have 'fallen out' or have been left out' by redactors so as to give a basis for a particular theory. the continuation is to be sought. on the other hand there is the problem. and that this work did not take place at one stroke. which have not belonged to such larger contexts. One must examine the corresponding texts in the book of Numbers independently of these to see if they belong together. but that this collection has undergone work of arrangement and interpretation. whether they were conceived as part of a comprehensive presentation of the occupation of the land and where. On the one hand there is the question whether they were at one time bound together as an independent larger unit. but shows several stages and layers. requiring further discussion. or at the final redaction of the Pentateuch. . have only been taken up at one of the stages of a synthesizing redaction.1 The traditions of the occupation of the land in the book of Joshua do not in any case suggest that they must be understood as some sort of continuation of preceding texts. however. The study of the patriarchal story has shown that it is not only a collection of texts that belong together thematically. that most of the texts of the Pentateuch were united into 'larger units' before these were brought together to form the present whole.4. It is clear. Reflections which suggest this for large parts of the Pentateuch should not be a temptation to look for such larger units at any price where nothing points in this direction.

a 'theology of the patriarchal story'. final arrangement of the Pentateuch Finally. and it would be consistent with this approach if it were to be freed from the hypothetical realm of the documentary hypothesis. In this regard too. and at first with no connection with one or several of the others. What stands out above all in this is that clearly defined theological intentions were at work in the arrangement and interpretation of these larger units. a 'theology of the Sinai pericope'. the Moses and exodus narratives of Exodus 1-15. and. But this means that the theological intentions of the preliminary stages of the Pentateuch as a whole are most clearly grasped in these larger units. entirely self-contained. each with its own complexity. The present study has expounded this in the case of the patriarchal story. And so what is remarkable and characteristic is this. Rather the concern. One can then trace a 'theology of the primeval story'. It goes without saying that the attempt to present a 'theology' of the individual 'sources' of the Pentateuch is incompatible with this. in my opinion. it is. one must look again at the question of the synthesizing. the Sinai pericope. The documentary hypothesis . methodologically justified and necessary. a 'theology of the Moses and exodus narratives'—each of them with several layers. 4. I think. Work on the Pentateuch has long since taken this path. and. must. to discover the theological plans which precede and underlie the present Pentateuch. even though not with the same clarity. namely that each of these theological outlines. our reflections and considerations mean a basic shift from the view hitherto taken. so that one can maintain the same for this larger unit as well. it needs no further demonstration for the primeval story and the Sinai pericope. final arrangement of the Pentateuch. in my opinion. Conclusions and Consequences 189 primeval story.3 The problem of the synthesizing. sufficiently apparent for Exodus 1-15.4. find its appropriate expression in the description of a 'theology* of the individual larger units. This concerns first the concept of 'redaction' or 'redactor'. is set out.

it is not possible to describe in detail the redaction history of the Pentateuch. P(Priestly document). Rather. JCYahwist). 239ff. E(Elohist). the basic notion that the individual written sources were joined together by redactors. Not even the question of the sequence in which the source layers were joined together can be answered with certainty'. have thereby become untenable. one has the sequence RJ RE RB RD RH Rp. A new area of study is opened here 1 Introduction. The presuppositions of this assumption have collapsed with the renunciation of the documentary hypothesis. 191. There will have to be further reflection however on the extent of this work and on the legitimacy of literary-critical judgments in detail. and which have led to the assumption of redactors at work. however. He saw the chronological sequence of the constituent parts of the Pentateuch as follows: L(lay source). 2 Introduction. Here too. The consequence of the change in viewpoint of the formation of the Pentateuch is that literary-critical reflections must be adapted to other contexts. that to contest the documentary hypothesis is not to question the right and necessity of the work of literary criticism. the earlier statement must be repeated here yet again. But this does not at all mean that all the literary-critical observations made so far. there persists.1 Hence. Eissfeldt carried through his view of the situation consistently and in detail to the end. D(Deuteronomy). H(Holiness Code). These reflections must look in part for their answers within the history of the formation of the individual larger units.2 Even when one can discern here a loss of confidence in the possibility of explaining the history of the redaction of the Pentateuch. pp. Fohrer supports in essence this view of the growth of the Pentateuch to its final form but without any further precisions: 'In the interim. p. when one designates each of the Redactors with an index letter indicating the source that was added.190 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch assumes that the individual written sources were joined together by redactors. . He assumed further that one must 'conceive the growth of the Pentateuch as a regular grafting of each of the later sources on to the older content'. B([Bundesbuch] Book of the Covenant).

so far as is possible. there must be renewed discussion of the sign of this work of collecting and reworking and of those who were responsible for it. And to this end various reflections from earlier chapters of this work may be taken up. and so more refined distinctions commend themselves. Hence. it is better not to retain the expression 'priestly document' because it is 1 However. and. First. Noth uses these terms in the sub-title of A History of Pentateuchal Traditions: 'The historical work of collection and reworking in the Old Testament'. 2 See above under 1. and on the other hand for the process of gathering them into one larger unit. which he wanted to withdraw expressly from the prevailing realm of the documentary hypothesis. Thus. .4. but should point primarily to the necessity of arriving at a further clarification. it has become evident that the assumption of a continuous 'priestly' narrative cannot stand critical examination. standardization of ideas. refinement. This should not result in imposing a fixed terminology. is a cohesive group of 'priestly' texts. it must be emphasized that the only layer that can be discovered within the Pentateuch that is comparable to the 'sources'. on the one hand for the independent process of growth of each of the stories of Abraham. and Jacob. Conclusions and Consequences 191 because it is no longer a matter of assigning individual texts to different sources. New criteria must also be reclaimed for the process of putting together the larger units to form the Pentateuch as a whole.2 Hence the suggestion that similar terminology be used with them. However.4. by speaking of the 'collector' of Joshua 1— 12 and of the 'reworker' of Joshua 13-21 in the predeuteronomistic pre-history of the book. one must make further distinctions here. but of outlining more exactly the process by which the single narratives came to form the larger units. For this reason Noth introduced other notions into the study of the book of Joshua.1 But the narratives of the occupation of the land in Joshua 1-12 are to be judged in a way very similar to the larger units within the Pentateuch. However. The notions of 'redaction' and 'redactor* are too closely bound with the putting together of 'sources' in pentateuchal study. Isaac.

. Studien zur Geschichte des Opfers im Alien Israel. there must be renewed examination of the question. In addition.1-7 is introduced as blessing and thus corresponds to the other theological priestly texts in the patriarchal story. 5 See above under 3.4. and Exodus 6. It is evident that the priestly texts are not restricted to one of the larger units of the Pentateuch. These references are sufficient for our purposes to show that in this layer there is a connection between the primeval story and the patriarchal story. The chronological details. Likewise the retrospective linking of these texts with the primeval story is obvious: the divine address in 9.192 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch too heavily impressed with the stamp of a continuous narrative. 2. 2 See above under 3. We had discovered that with Exod.4 It should immediately be called to mind that these 'theological' priestly texts do not occur throughout the whole of the Pentateuch. pp.2-9.3 There are also obvious connections with the creation account in Genesis 1. 6-7.5 From this point on there is not a text in the Pentateuch which develops theological statements in a way like that in the primeval story. These texts reach beyond the limits of the larger units.4. 1967. 9.2. the patriarchal story. but do not cover the whole Pentateuch. Rendtorff. 4 A corresponding connection with the flood story is less clearly demonstrable.8-17 has as its central point the 'covenant' of God with Noah and shows many a connection in content and language with Genesis 17 which speaks of the 'covenant' with Abraham. disputed in current pentateuchal study. whether different types of priestly texts belong together. The first part of the divine address in Gen. 3 The refinements necessary here within the priestly layer cannot be carried out in this study. It commends itself to speak of *priestly texts'. We have seen that the 'theological' priestly texts in patriarchal story find their clear continuation in Exod.23-25 and 6.4. R. which are generally reckoned to 1 Cf. 6.12 as well as to the terminology where there is talk of fertility and increase as consequences of the blessing.2-9 the priestly cross-references to the patriarchs cease.

27.1 show no linguistic relationship to the chronological texts of the patriarchal story. manifest likewise some connections between the different larger units. 2.29. to which there is no parallel in the rest of the Pentateuch. and that this other event is on each occasion in the infinitive with a preceding lamed. 12. 16. This holds too for the corresponding data in Genesis 5 (w. there are clear connections between the patriarchal story and the preceding 1 Ibid. Conclusions and Consequences 193 the *F texts. . 11.10). except in the case of Terah. There is no text at all in the primeval story which corresponds exactly to the pattern of the group mentioned above. one might put Exod.3. namely the beginning of residence in the land of Canaan. There is a group of texts in the patriarchal story which stand out from the chronological notes by giving the age of a person at the time of a particular event. Some. 20. 11. a text which is quite outside the pattern. With the texts of the second main group.32). 3 The information about the death of Moses in Deut.1 and 19. And so. 11. ll.32 corresponds to the basic pattern in the patriarchal story.6). 7. however are close to it: the note on the age of Shem when he begot Arphacsad (Gen.1 in some sort of relationship to Gen.4. in respect of the chronological notes. these texts are formulated according to a fixed pattern.8. Ham.4.7 in the note on the age of Moses and Aaron 'when they spoke to Pharaoh'.lOff. it is in Exod. 4 One could see a connection in that the specific time is on each occasion given in relation to another event. which give details of the entire life-span in connection with the notification about the death. Num. it has already been pointed out that the note about the death of Terah in Gen. 14. on the age of Noah when he begot Shem. 34. 16. 20. 31) and the notification of the death of Noah in 9. and Japhet (5.12 There is only one sentence that corresponds to this pattern in the larger units that follow the patriarchal story.17. and at the beginning of the flood (7.11.40. data about the death is missing.3 Of the other chronological notes.4 The remaining chronological remarks in Exod. whereas in Gen. 2 See above under 3. 10. or departure from the land of Egypt.7 is formulated in a unique way.

they show a clear connection with the pronouncements of the creation account.3. the link with the patriarchal story is once again underscored emphatically and the name of YHWH is introduced.11. but after it. The earlier surmise expressed from time to time that *P might be identical with the end redaction of the Pentateuch. and the beginning of the occupation of the land which refer 1 See above tinder 4. to which we have already drawn attention. but does not cover the whole Pentateuch. 2 The characteristic formula. In the patriarchal story the main emphasis is on the divine covenant struck with Abraham. 48. 4 Rendtorff. 'be fruitful and multiply* echoes clearly in Gen. but only in the promise about Ishmael in v. both verbs appear next to each other in Gen. no more. After this. Sinai.3. see above under 1.7. The connections with the primeval story are also rather marked.3 This means that we are dealing here with a layer of reworking which extends beyond the limits of the individual larger units.4 It is different however with the layer of reworking which bears the deuteronomic stamp. 20. 3 A new and careful examination is necessary to see if reasons other than those given here speak in favour of reckoning other texts to this priestly layer. The pronouncements about Jacob form a further central point. at the beginning of the Moses story. The Moses story shows a further tie with the patriarchal story. 5 See above under 2. . This is expressed in the primeval story by certain very weighty texts which describe a unique conception of creation and a covenant struck with Noah. has not held and so must be abandoned. they consist partly in rather short promise addresses. These observations make it clear that with the priestly texts it is a matter of a layer of reworking which put the emphasis on definite central points.12 Finally.5 It is evident that there is a whole series of texts dealing with the events of the exodus from Egypt.194 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch and following larger units.4.3. 35. which is not present in the same way with Abraham. though there is no complete agreement. The same picture is evident in the following units as in the theological' texts. 28. 17.1. there is no further sign of the priestly layer in the Pentateuch.

12).23). . at the 1 Except in the isolated passage. and Jacob'. the desert. the occupation of the land in east Jordan. Thus. his decision to annihilate the people (14.1. 15. 33. partially. 340. 32. It is similar in Numbers 1314 where YHWH himself recalls his oath as he withdraws. 33. cit. Moses prays to YHWH.13-16.1-3a). First.18. It is clear that this series of texts extends over the whole Pentateuch and that they occur in every larger unit or complex of traditions from the patriarchal story on: in the patriarchal story. and are stamped with deuteronomic language. there is reference back to the promise of the land to the patriarchs. when the fulfillment of the promise to the patriarchs appears in danger: Moses begs YHWH to 'remember' the patriarchs to whom he has sworn that he would make their posterity numerous and give it the land (Exod. Conclusions and Consequences 195 hack to the patriarchal story. cf. immediately before the departure from Egypt. The connection between the promise of the land to the patriarchs and the leading out of Egypt is particularly underscored: in Gen. 12. Isaac. there is Gen. 11. Sinai.5.12 both are set side by side in almost identical formulations.7. In Exod. and YHWH orders the departure for the land which he swore to the patriarchs that he would give to their descendants (Exod. op.4. 13.7. p.24 where. 32. 15. 2 In Exod. In Numbers 11 there is yet another critical situation in which Israel's journey into the promised land appears in danger.13). and especially to the promise of the land to the patriarchs. 50. 33. It is the same immediately before the next departure.24 and Exod. This pronouncement of YHWH is taken up again when the occupation of the land appears in danger for the last time because the tribes of Reuben and Gad have expressed the wish to settle in east Jordan (Num.11). 24. an anticipation of the leading out from Egypt has been inserted which gives the verse the character of a leading back to the land of the patriarchs—an idea which is expressed neither in the patriarchal1 nor in the exodus story. Gen. from Sinai. Kessler.. the exodus. to the formula 'the land which I swore to Abraham. 50. reminding him of his oath (v. The formulation is very close to that used in Gen. is added: 'to your descendants (seed) will I give it'. at the end of the patriarchal story.

or which can definitively be made responsible for it. which found the Pentateuch already as a whole and provided it with particular interpretative emphases? It is for further study to explain if there is a discernible work of redaction which is demonstrably coherent with these texts. But nothing is thereby said of the part that this layer had in the final arrangement of the whole Pentateuch. This is significant because our inquiries hitherto have found no text or no layer of reworking about which this can be said. or is it a matter of a predominantly interpretative reworking.196 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch same time. It is not the purpose of this study to inquire in detail into the final stage of the history of its formation. The advocates of the 'source' theory can no longer demonstrate this for the ancient pentateuchal 'sources'. the only one which unambiguously views the Pentateuch as a whole and will have it understood as one great coherent complex. 33. There is another question which is relative to the more precise designation of this layer and its pertinence to texts in other areas. There can be no doubt therefore that these formulations are deliberately meant to span the whole Pentateuch complex (with the exception of the primeval story). I have described these texts as 'deuteronomically stamped' so as to avoid a premature conclusion as to what . the whole coherent pentateuchal narrative is presented: the promise of the land to the patriarchs—the leading out of Egypt—the leading (back) into the promised land. a qualifying statement: the texts advanced show clearly that the layer of reworking to which they belong views the Pentateuch as one great complex. First. But this certainly does not solve the problem of the final redaction of the Pentateuch. But there should be a brief sketch of the consequences and the questions thus raised. according to our examination so far.1). and this is pronounced at the departure from Sinai (Exod. And so this deuteronomically stamped layer of reworking is the first and. The question remains open: is it a matter here of a layer of reworking which itself cooperated in putting the Pentateuch together out of the individual larger units and other parts. and the ^priestly document' has shown that it likewise can not establish itself as a coherent whole.

3.8. new theories were to replace hypotheses now outgrown. For example. 17-18).24 and Exod. to combine this group of texts with other 'deuteronomistic' texts in the first four books of the Pentateuch and attribute them to a 'deuteronomistic' redaction. 2 In Deut. It would be cause for concern if premature. a quite different sort of theme occurs. 24. 18. to mention just one other example.4. is by no means excluded. . but this does not necessarily mean that this text belongs.23).1 But here too there would be a definite conclusion which it would be better to avoid at first. of course. all-embracing. without examining more closely and basing more firmly their connection. This is necessary because criteria for what is 'deuteronomic'. Neither is the promise of the land to the patriarchs mentioned in Josh. in Exod.11-14 (cf. Conclusions and Consequences 197 their place might be within the concept 'deuteronomic'. to one layer of reworking and redaction. 26. but the formula found elsewhere. e. Rather. inadequately based. there is no mention of the promise of the land to the patriarchs.2 and in the deuteronomistic history only in Judg. 6. the heavily 'deuteronomistically stamped' Genesis 153 contains nothing about YHWH's oath which is so frequent in Deuteronomy. 26.5-9. In Deut. I have already referred to the discussion whether one ought speak rather of 'early deuteronomic' or 'proto-deuteronomic'.1.23 the verb is used instead of. 2. is used. It occurs in Deuteronomy only in the 'Credo' text (6.1. or how 'deuteronomic' is to be discerned in this area. 50. There exists here a fundamental difference between the 'Credo' formulations of Deut.19. 1 See above under 2. it belongs to the broad realm of deuteronomic-deuteronomistic language and theology.1. In Gen.g. of Gen. with the group of texts already mentioned. w. the characteristic link in the two central texts of this layer between the statements about the leading out from Egypt and the oath promising the land to the patriarchs is entirely unusual. The texts do not contain just current deuteronomic or deuteronomistic statements.3. 3 See above under 2. therefore. 33.20-24 and Deut. It would be methodologically inadmissible.7 (end). have not yet been adequately worked out. 6. but requires careful scrutiny. a 'land flowing with milk and honey'. This.

.. cit. which is used in the historical literature at the transition from one epoch to another*.3 Vriezen reflects further and interestingly 'that the author (of Exod. 10 show much in common both in structure and in formulation: 'Then Joseph/Joshua died.. who used this pattern in Exodus 1 and Judges 2.. 2. rather we must assume that the reworkers... 8 and Judg. 1. 2.1 The texts of Exod.p..339. who I which did not know Joseph/YHWH.4 This fits very well into our picture of the history of the formation of the Pentateuch. that these two texts *belong to the same literary pattern'. and there rose up a new king/another generation.343.2 He sees in them 'two clear examples ..p. and all that generation. and refers to 'the dtn.. however convinced he may have been of the continuity of the two periods and have arrived at his formulation in this conviction'. VT 17 (1967) 334-53. a few further observations and reflections may be added. 4 Op. in my opinion. of the same phraseology.... under the influence of the source theory. that it is a matter of a literary form that would Ijave had its own life independently of the author or a particular circle of authors.. 1 'Exodusstudien Exodus 1'.6.. And so again we encounter the deuteronomic-deuteronomistic circle. belonged to the same circles.. 3 Ibid.6.' Vriezen has shown. 2 Op. Vriezen has drawn attention to the striking parallelism between the beginning of the exodus story and the beginning of the story of the judges.. 8) was aware of something of a gap between the periods in the history of his people' and that he '(was) conscious that after the close of the Joseph story an entirely new direction in the history of his people was opened.. 1. is of the opinion that here there 'was an older and a later' example available for this pattern.. It is hardly likely. crt. .8. convincingly I think. It is of primary importance in our context that the same literary pattern is used within the Pentateuch in leading up to and linking two originally independent narrative complexes as within the 'deuteronomistic history*. Vriezen.198 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch With this reservation. idiom' in Judg. Vriezen also reckons with a farreaching independence and detachment of the patriarchal complexes of tradition on the one hand and of the Israelites in Egypt on the other.

In any case. The announcement of the death of Moses in Num. that this link was made in the context of the great work of the redaction of the Pentateuch'. His arguments rely in essence on the assumption that there existed a tightly outlined *F-narrative and that this work had been made the ground plan of the pentateuchal redaction. p. 2 Op. Noth dealt with this problem in detail1 and expressed the view that 'one.. The book of Deuteronomy in its turn cannot. because they show too many common features. The delimitation and canonization of the Pentateuch certainly presents a problem for our present view of the literary history of its formation. 3 Op. 27. cit.. cit. because of his presuppositions. be separated from the books that follow. And so in Noth's view.3 This manner of argument would in any case carry little conviction because of the assumption of an independent Pnarrative. came to reject this conjecture. in its present form. (could) consider here. favours the opinion that it must be a matter of later redaction here. 32-35. . Conclusions and Consequences 199 This gives new weight to the fact that towards the end of the book of Numbers. especially in chs. But it can hardly be explained by the conjecture of a 'special esteem' for a fictitious earlier 1 The Chronicler's History. 143. only becomes really comprehensible if it already existed within the limits set by the P-narrative and enjoyed special esteem'. the fact that it is not *P* but 'Dtr' who dominates in the account of Moses' death in Deuteronomy 34.2 Noth..12-23 and the account of it in Deuteronomy 34 show that the link between the two is intended. This holds likewise for the other argument of Noth that the later existence of the Pentateuch 'as the basic sacred writing of the post-exilic community. the deuteronomistic element appears clearly. it is clear that the book of Deuteronomy cannot be sharply separated from the remaining Tetrateuch'. p. But this argument is rendered irrelevant when one does not reckon with such a tightly outlined 'P'-narrative. 25. Finally. p. 145.. it is also clear that the last sections of the book of Numbers are not comprehensible when detached from this overall complex.4...


The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch

written form; it is the understanding of the Pentateuch as Torah' that must come under consideration. This shows quite clearly how one-sided it must be to consider the whole Pentateuch as narrative. The legal sections are often treated merely as an interruption of the narrative or as insertions or the like. It is obvious that this does not do justice to the present picture of the Pentateuch. Methodological criteria must be developed whereby the connections between the narrative and the legal sections can be better understood. The whole question of 'redaction' would, in my opinion, have to be thought through anew under this aspect. It is not at all so certain that the Pentateuch' existed first as an independent entity without Deuteronomy before, in a later act of redaction, it was joined with Deuteronomy and possibly with the 'deuteronomistic history'. The problems that arise from the interrelations between the last chapters of the book of Numbers, Deuteronomy, and the 'deuteronomistic' tradition of the occupation of the land, show that the 'deuteronomistic' element clearly played an important role in this area when the different parts of the tradition were brought together. When we take these reflections together with the earlier considerations on the significance of a deuteronomically stamped layer of reworking for the overall conception of the Pentateuch, we see that, all things considered, the share of the deuteronomic-deuteronomistic circles in the arrangement of the Pentateuch as a whole appears to have been considerable. This conclusion gains strength from the fact that so far no other layer of reworking is discernible which could have had a comparable significance. At the same time, however, the methodological demand must be repeated, that careful distinctions must be made within these circles so as to gain a clear view of the layers of tradition in this area, and thereby also into the procedures of pentateuchal redaction. Finally, there is a further question to put: is it at all justified to use such completely different methods when dealing with the Pentateuch on the one hand and the 'deuteronomic history* on the other, as is generally done today? Now that earlier attempts to trace the 'sources' of the Pentateuch into the books of Kings have not prevalied, a quite different way of looking at the historical books from Joshua to Kings has taken the fore-

4. Conclusions and Consequences


ground. Attention has turned to the larger complexes which were already available to the authors or redactors who established the final form of the text. It is a matter then of larger units which form the intermediary stage between the individual narratives and the final form of the text, such as we find in the Pentateuch. We drew attention earlier to Noth's study of the book of Joshua in which he encountered traditions of the occupation of the land as an independent larger unit.1 Something corresponding holds for the Samuel—Saul complex, the story of the rise of David, of the succession, and so on. The obvious availability of such larger units in the Pentateuch should, in my opinion, have given cause for similar methodological treatment there. I hold that it is very likely that, by turning away from the traditional manner of treating the Pentateuch, important insights for a fresh methodological approach can be gained from what has been learnt when dealing with the historical books. If no pre-'deuteronomistic' Pentateuch redaction is discernible, and if the existence of 'older pentateuchal sources' is not demonstrable, then the questions of the dating of the Pentateuch and its individual constituent parts necessarily place themselves anew. There can be no question of dating the 'sources' at a later period, as is often attempted today.2 However, within the framework of such attempts, and however independent of them, important observations have been made which require these questions to be thoroughly examined. In particular, attention has been drawn repeatedly to the fact that essential themes and names in the Pentateuch tradition are scarcely, or not at all, mentioned in the predeuteronomistic or pre-exilic period. This observation must undoubtedly be taken more seriously than it has been hitherto. In fact, this 'silence' in the pre-exilic literature is a certain sign that the contents of the pentateuchal tradition cannot have played the central role at this time that is often attributed to them today. What methodological consequences does one draw from this? First, it must be conceded that we really do not possess
1 See above under 1.4; cf. 4.3. 2 See above under 4.1.


The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch

reliable criteria for dating the pentateuchal literature. Each dating of the pentateuchal 'sources' relies on purely hypothetical assumptions which in the long run have their continued existence because of the consensus of scholars.1 Hence, a study of the Pentateuch which is both critical and aware of method must be prepared to discuss thoroughly once more the accepted datings. Further, it must be granted that our traditio-historical reflections rely for a large part on hypotheses which on each occasion must undergo critical scrutiny. B. Diebner has formulated the 'discomfort' briefly and pointedly, namely 'to pursue tradition-history as the history of the aftereffects of old traditions whose origins one thinks one knows, thanks to the longstanding conclusions of scholarship. As a matter of fact, tradition-criticism seems to me to be 'reception-criticism'; it starts from the latest comprehensible form of a particular tradition, established with probability within the history of Old Testament literature, and traces it back carefully to the origins of what, on each occasion, has been received'.2 One must approve of this basic principle of methodology; tradition-history has often been carried out in this way. Under such criticism of opinions held to date, care must be taken that the pendulum does not swing too far to the other side. This holds especially when replacing current dating with new. There is a tendency among some scholars today to maintain an exilic or post-exilic date for the great mass of pentateuchal material. The methodological criteria for such dating, however, must still be carefully weighed. It is not enough to replace a common enough early dating by a late dating. In place of an all-embracing theory which ascribes the great mass of pentateuchal narrative material to the 'older sources', and so to a relatively earlier period in the history of
1 A particularly obvious example of this is the dating of the 'Yahwist' in the period of the kingdom under David and Solomon; there is not a single proof for this; yet it is accepted by a great number of Old Testament scholars. 2 ' "Isaak" und "Abraham" in der alttestamentlichen Literatur ausserhalb Gen. 12—50. Eine Sammlung literaturgeschichtlicher Beobachtungen nebst uberlieferungsgeschichtlichen Spekulatationen', DBAT 7 (1974) 38-50 (p. 48).

4. Conclusions and Consequences


Israel, it is more a question, I think, of an approach which makes distinctions; it reckons with a rather long period of formation of the Pentateuch, and above all with the joining together of the individual larger units so as to form a single whole; this would be the final stage, which is to be put relatively late. To describe this in concrete terms: an overall view of the Pentateuch reveals clearly the deuteronomically stamped layer of reworking; a rather long process of development involving a number of layers must have preceded this; and in this process the smallest units grew into rather small collections, these collections into the larger units, and finally came the end stage as the text now lies before us. It must be noted again that in the matter of dating, those texts from which one normally takes one's orientation, provide only relative and by no means certain clues to a fixed dating. This is true in many respects for the deuteronomicdeuteronomistic area. The formation of Deuteronomy itself cannot be dated with certainty. There are very sound reasons for setting the basic material of Deuteronomy in the eighth century BCE.1 One must certainly reckon with the fact that the authors of such a work were not in their time isolated individuals, but rather representatives of particular circles.2 This would mean that texts in the 'deuteronomic' style could occur already from this time on or even earlier, if one takes account of 'early deuteronomic' texts which are not dependent on Deuteronomy,3 but precede it and witness to 'early stages of deuteronomic thought and language'.4 This would shift the dating of the whole by more than two hundred years. What the notion 'deuteronomistic' means in regard to chronology, is in turn not clear. Further, to assume dependence on Deuteronomy is to say nothing about the temporal interval. Finally, it must also be said that the common dating of the 'priestly' sections, be they narrative or legal, to the exilic or the post-exilic period, likewise rests on conjecture and the consensus of scholars, but not on unambiguous criteria.
1 Cf. Fohrer, Introduction, pp. 167ff. 2 Cf. H.W. Wolff, 'Hoseas geistige Heimat', ThLZ 81 (1956) 83-94 = Gesammelte Studien zum Alien Testament, 1964, pp. 232-50. 3 Thus N. Lohfink, Die Landverheissung als Eid, pp. 17-18. 4 Kaiser, Introduction, pp. 124-29.


The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch

The question of an absolute chronology for the individual stages of the formation of the Pentateuch must remain open. It is not my intention to burden the present work with it because what concerns me primarily are the processes at work in the history of the formation of the Pentateuch, and so some sort of relative chronology. Thus, the period over which each of the individual processes extended must remain an open question. I am nevertheless aware that the question requires an answer. It will be necessary to make a renewed effort to determine the intentions and interests of the circles behind the individual phases of the formation of the tradition, the reworking and the interpretation, the collection and the arrangement, so far as is possible with our fragmentary knowledge of Israel's social, cultural, and intellectual-spiritual history. Finally, the problem must be taken up again of the 'silence' of a large area of pre-exilic literature on the themes and names in the pentateuchal traditions. The fact as such is indisputable. But the question arises, what is to be concluded from it? First, that the themes of the Pentateuch were not at the centre of Israelite belief and thought in the pre-exilic period; this certainly would have found expression in the literature of this period, especially in the prophets. Van Seters has rightly pointed out that in Jeremiah and Ezekiel (and in the older layers of Deuteronomy as well), YHWH's saving action toward the 'fathers' refers to the exodus generation and not to the 'patriarchs' of Genesis;1 the different traditions therefore were not yet joined together with each other at this time. However, it is worthy of attention that in another passage in Ezekiel, Abraham is mentioned as the one who 'took possession of the land' (Ezek. S3.24).2 It is very important that this appears as an argument on the lips of those who have remained back in the land. This shows clearly, I think, that this was a well-known, popular tradition at that time. This last observation makes it clear how reserved one must
1 'Confessional Reformulation in the Exilic Period', VT 22 (1972) 44859. 2 When Van Seters remarks on this text that the idea of promise is missing (p. 449), then this is no very effective argument.

4. Conclusions and Consequences


be in drawing conclusions from 'silence'. The 'silence' of the pre-exilic literature on the themes of the Pentateuch shows, as we have said, that they were not, at this time, really central themes in Israel. However, it seems very questionable whether one can conclude without more ado that they were unknown. There must be a more accurate inquiry which asks, in what areas could these traditions have had their 'setting in life'. But this question can only be answered if it were expected that they should occur, for instance, in the prophets, had they been available at the time. We should not imagine that life in the pre-exilic Israel was uniform and selfcontained. Rather, we must reckon with the reverse, that in Old Testament literature much has been bound together in literary form which never existed together in the life of ancient Israel. So it is certainly possible that individual traditions were handed down in certain circles and over a long period of time, but remained unknown in other circles. One should not only think of the differences between north and south, which were undoubtedly considerable, but also of the differences between city (in particular, Jerusalem) and country, of local and regional, cultic and court traditions and of the peculiarities of what was passed on in priestly, levitical, and prophetic circles. Whoever wants to work with the 'argument from silence' must, I think, first demonstrate that what is found missing in a particular place ought to appear there if it were known at the time when the text was formed. This does not at all mean that observations on the widespread absence of pentateuchal themes in the pre-exilic literature should be pushed aside. Rather, they link up with our own observations in so far as they make clear that the pre-exilic literature nowhere indicates that at this time there existed in any form the Tentateuch' as a central witness to Israel's faith. In which form and in which circles the individual traditions were handed on, how they grew together into larger units, were reworked and interpreted, all this must be the object of further thorough and detailed studies. A first contribution to this may have been achieved here. It would be following a false trail methodologically, I think, if 'new* or 'late' sources were now to replace the 'old' pentateuchal sources, or if one wanted to try to repeat the global

One must tackle it. The problem of the process of tradition in the Pentateuch lies deeper. 2nd edn).1 1 Genesis (German 9th edn. . 440. Eng. as von Rad demanded in one of his last statements: 'we urgently need a comprehensive new analysis of the narrative material of the Pentateuch'.206 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch interpretation of the Tahwist' or other 'sources' with another dating and on the background of other time-conditioned circumstances. That would be to pour new wine into old skins. p.

31-32 11.31 32.6b 148 13.1-7 9.10 152.16 13. 184 13. 77 12. 152 13. 33.4-5 146 12.21 9.29 5.5 12.4a 1 4.12.4b-5 147 142. 150. 184 12.17 57. 61. 78. 148 13.17 11. 161.12 12.20 5.2 5.26 5.1-3 15. 71. 151 13.32 6. 81. 73. 148. 135n2 13.15 12. 67.17 5.19 13 150 51n4 49 150 150 170 161 50.7 58.15-16 68. 122.10-20 46.31 5.14-17 55. 183. 52 12. 77.32 146 192 151 193 161n2 193 193 193 193 193 193 151 193 193 127 151 193 152 127 125 146 192 151 161n2 193 146 193 161n2 33 51n4 146 147 158.17 12.17 7.6 142. 34 11.27 5. 84. 125. 77. 55.30 11. 134.1 13. 60. 50.14 5.10 11.1-2 51.10-11 148 13.l1b 148. 159 195n2 12. 72.1-9 49.9 13.8 148 148 13.11-26 11.7 58. 63.1 8.12 148.30 5. 73 12. 170 13. 135. 59.3.10. 82. 58. 75n3. 185 12.3b 12. 160 12. 193 34 12-50 83nl 12.4 158.11 5.2 148 13. 130.9 51.15 57. 135. 77 . 70.15 9.1 66. 60.5 148 13. 148 51n4 13.11 9.12a 148 13.3a 185n6 185n6 12.29 11. 182.1-8 12. 83. 184 13. 71.6 8.2-3 65 12. 132. 150 12.10 12. 151 13. 74.8 5.10.INDEXES INDEX OF BIBLICAL REFERENCES Genesis 1-11 1. 132n3. 77 13.3 59. 68.13 12. 51. 54.16 12. 70. 71 13. 150.12b 149 13.5 6.3-4 51.21-22 8.2 65. 143 12. 76. 77 62. 185 12.26 11.1-17 9.

10 16. 164. 54.2b 153. 63. 53. 183 20 50. 81 57. 54. 77.7-8 168 17. 63.7-21 15.5 63. 146. 80 18.1 159. 67. 55 20. 61. 75n5 17.1 16. 54 20-22 50. 183. 165 17. 77.1-7 50 152 21.22 54n3 17. 165 17. 174 18. 59.16 50 18.18 59.15 16. 17. 165 17. 86.5 15. 167.15-16 16. 161.22b33 127.16 14. 159. 130n 2 20. 17. 80 153 21.13-16 15. 142. 65.1 86.7 130. 53. 17. 170 19. 77.6 63. 147 52.21 165 17.1-28 49. 68. 77. 197 18. 60. 70nl. 86.13 152.10 62 18. 174 18.1 14. 165 17. 131n2. 169 53.1-6 158. 145 51. 152. 80 62 149 151 158.4 63.30-38 49. 164.5-6 70 17. 86. 170 .29 151. 168 57.116aa 49.1 15.7 15.21 15 15. 165 17.20-23 128 18. 149n2 17. 81. 183. 81nl.23-26 166 158-60. 82 54 55.3 15.25 18 14.4 15. 170 21. 155. 70. 51. 76. 85.11 14.208 13.18 14 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 71. 51n4 20.19 62. 181 15. 82.19 128. 164. 135. 54.4-5 80 17. 53. 156. 77. 78.17 130 20. 158n2. 81.9 16.3 16.32 129 19 54 19. 62.7 70.18 16 16. 80.12 14. 68. 193 151 62.12 161 20. 55. 62. 58.8 70. 59. 169 17. 82.11-12 16. 50 51n4.1-18 46 20. 165. 65. 74.1a 159 17. 165. 77. 195n2 51. 67 80 62 62 62. 68. 166 17. 197 52.17-33 50 18.6-7 164 17. 160. 170 18. 55. 195nl 142 58.27-28 50 19.16 18.14 15. 77.9 15. 50. 65. 170 149 149.12 166 17. 183 51n4 142 142 142 142. 16. 170 19.25 129 18. 151 54n4.2 63. 74. 68.19b 165 17. 192 51n4. 160 51. 70.20 63. 130. 169.16 62. 77 52. 16467.1-19. 67. 164.23-27 55 17.22 50 18.1 51. 86. 81.2-4 15. 509 19.18 150. 82.1-5 21. 18.14 62. 28 151 18.24 169 17 17. 82. 131.

162.29 26.4a 26.2-4 26.4 24. 51n4 54. 55nl. 26.16-17 26.32-33 26.15-18 22.1 24. 182 78 87. 82. 164. 183 51n4 75n3 58.1-4 141.22-32 21. 84. 54.2-3 26.1 23. 98n2 65 62. 66.19-20 26.3 51n4. 80 63. 159. 77.2 23. 80. 77.17-18 23. 161 56nl 151 158. 21. 77.9 27. 6567. 182 51. 75. 80 51.4b-5 26.3b 22. 161 145 154 145.2-3a 26.7 24.2 22.8ff. 54. 76. 174 64.17 23.18 23 153. 54.1 22.8-21 21.17-18 22.4 26.128. 68. 59.7-11 26.67 25. 122.16 22. 195n2 147 147 161 153 162. 79 63. 96.12 21. 182 72 72 72 78 45 46 45 46 75n4 47. 59. 89. 78nl. 95.25 22 209 78.4a 22. 164 . 59.3 22. 66 147 96 96 55.17 22. 166.4 21.12-17 25. 83.4ad 26. 77. 65.56n l. 68. 82. 52. 78. 77nl. 98. 61. 78nl. 87 51n4 54. 78n2. 144.16-18 22.Index of Biblical References 21. 82. 57. 96 59. 68. 78. 68. 62. 77. 182 46 83 72 66.15 26. 54nl. 133n3 59. 159 78 57.26-31 26.19 24 24.20 25.18 21. 75.21 26. 83. 15456. 21. 63.34 27. 72.9 25.18 26. 160. 158. 167. 146. 72. 182 48 46 47 46 48 164nl 159.7 25.2 26.26 26 26. 134. 160. 46.22-23 21.7-10 25. 83.3b 26. 72. 77nl.12-33 26. 61.12 26.61 24. 96nl. 163n2 44 140n 2 143. 77.4628.12-14 26. 95.34-35 26. 54 46.19-34 25.6-11 26.3-5 26. 169 71.5 26.17 25. 51 51n4 47 51n3.19 25. 80. 183 23. 162n2 145 140 162. 65. 77. 72. 134. 75nl. 159 45. 87. 47 50.25-26 25.8 21. 154. 65. 166 158 160 150 50 51.22 21.10 24.24 26.5 21. 80.25b 26. 62.13 21. 73.22 26. 87. 154 145 52. 48 47 47. 159.5 28 28. 48 48 48 48 46.22-34 21. 82. 74. 96 72 58. 160 56nl.28 26. 84.5f.16-17 22.23 25. 163n2 44 22.2-5 26. 78.

18abp 31. 56nl.27-30 33. 169 144.11-12 69. 164.3 48. 81. 37. 65. 69.15 35.12 32. 70n2. 71.160 138. 22b36 35.3-4 48.7 143 28.6 46. 194n2 164n2 . 89 73 56nl 66-68.2 75 56nl. 194n2 35. 82.2 37.23 35. 135 63.27-29 35.14 41.12 57.28 36.9-13 66. 165.13 32. 89 66 142 144 142 158. 75. 83 30. 83. 75n3. 135n2 28. 135.9-12 56nl. 59. 145 145 145 161.10-11 32.13 46. 71.2-4 46. 65. 166. 164 58. 134 28. 64.13 31. 167.10 32. 82.3-4 28.29 31. 89 44 174 83 66. 80. 59. 68.3 46. 81.4 57. 139 144 144 144 56nl. 164. 83.10 166 35.9 82. 164.11 63. 67. 162 161. 73. 73. 82.5-6 142.15 66. 80.3 35.3 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 31. 159 139 139 151 161 158.3 38 38.28a 47.3 68.4 48.24 31. 81n1. 164. 164. 61. 165 42. 194n2 28.210 28. 169 35. 75. 73.10-22 15.6 143 28. 59. 81. 68. 167 35. 162 56nl.10-11 31.14 35. 135.18 145 28.2 28. 70. 184 28. 135n4 28.3-4 161 30.9 47. 83. 28b 48.1 37. 44.19 145 28.20 66.4 34.9 161 28.13 57. 75n5. 77. 164. 61. 89 28. 138nl. 78.5 164nl 28. 65. 161 162 158 161.28 47.27 35. 164. 76. 61.5 42. 164. 73.23-33 (22-32) 32. 165 143 28.1-21 37.23 (22) 32.12 46.13b 73 28. 75 141 147 56nl 89 66. 166 35. 65. 83.42 32-36 32 32. 66. 68 144 145. 3ff. 63.4 46. 60. 162 155 43 143 38 155 139.18a 34.6a 35. 58. 31. 62.23 31.11-13 31.7 42.13-14 68 28. 83.7 37-50 37 37.14 59. 155.26 47. 72.46a 145 145 147 56nl 143 161 161 161 142 56nl 66. 81nl.5 31.9 161 31. 82. 68. 82. 76. 84. 67. 66 44 164 69 143 63. 58.1 35. 135 35.1 28. 68.15 47. 67.8 34. 89 65 n 2 62. 73. 69. 75. 76. 165. 165 35.2 34.13-15 56.6-9 28.46 41.

93nl 93 92 93nl 89n3 93n2 38 37. 144 64 63 66.10(9) 32.3 18 184 18. 85.24 211 87. 195 87.25 50. 195.2 157 6.11 32. 197n2 3.5 50.1 16.3-10 97 87.21 198 99nl 111 111 111 151 112 85 88 85. 192 156.7 86 6.11-22 2.16 48. 197n2 97 158.11 50.24 2.25 3ff. 37nl.31 90.18 192 9.51 97 87.11 13.1-3a 33. 89 2.5 88. 99. 97.4 86 6. 195n2. 198 84. 186 89n3 38 193 92 92. 135.7 130 12.20 50. 111 91 112 112 91 91 92 91 91.23-25 2.12-14 50.5 195 13.6 1. 197n2 111 89 50.2 16-18 16.19 14 14.3 32.12 32. 95nl 3.15 13.31 15.115. 68 162 162 145 145 162 144 158 162 144.17 3 3.3 . 91 90n5 198 161n3.14 130 9.1-10 2. 152.7 48. 36. 91. 1 1. 161. 33b 50.1 37 46. 193 8.3 16.2-8 6. 168 90 88 89. 99.3-8 32-34 32 32. 87nl.1 90 4.11-14 32.29 130 11.32 17.4 32.13 32. 195 91 112 91.6 130 130 8. 158n3.30 49. 85nl. 192 86. 90.13 50.30-31 49.13 13.27b 90. 186 36.7 160nl. 36n7.21 49. 168.4 24.7 32.40 193 12.2-9 86. 168. 196. 90 4.41 157 12. 145 158n3. 162 66. 90.21 1-14 1-4 Iff.7 1. 37.8 86 7. 189 35 36.16 4.9 90 4. 97 13 13. 913n5 91 89nl.14. 89.1-3 33.8 86.8 90 4.Index of Biblical References 48. 91. 30f. 186 12. 9597.1 32. 49. 186 192 6 6. 195. 98 97.49-32 49. 195 97 98 97 36 80. 99nl. 112 Exodus 1-15 1. 13. 97. 87.8 32.8 19-Num 10 19-24 19. 3–4 3.23 33 33. 157 6.6 3.6 16.32 185n6 12.8-17 9.8 1.15-16 48. 186. 92. 98 98 91 91 87.10 2 2. 98.15 88 88. 90.26 142. 84nl. 162 35.

195 94 94 142 1 Samuel 1.5 53. 195 96nl 14.11 130 131 131 131 131 131 130 204 99nl 2.20-24 197n2 197. 137.28 92 16.14 33.22-24 14.13 38n3 93 20.27 152 197n2 25. 199 34.11 142 Numbers 10.18 11.7 193n3 Joshua 1-12 13-21 24.13 16.20 18 33.2 Amos 4.5 11.11-15 11.13 11-20 11.162.3 53.1436.32b 142 20.1 198.5 114 22-24 86nl 131n2 130 130.16 14.11 32.22 14.17-18 Judges 2 191 191 197n2 197n2 Ezekiel 14 14.4 27.18 53.11-14 24.5 22. 131n2 Deuteronomy 6.12 11. 195 92 93nl 93nl 98 93nl 98.23 913 38 n 3 38 92 98 195 92 92 98.120.212 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch 24.18 14.11 11.12-20 14.9 26. 99.14 14.4-5 20. 198n3 197 152 .1 35.3 185n6 94 199 199 113 94 94.4-6 130 9.8 32.16a 93 92 21.23 197n2 9.10 Jeremiah 22.12-23 32-35 32 32.5 48 25.24 Hosea 2. 99.1 193 92 20.1 161n3 Isaiah 49.24 96nl 96nl Leviticus 22.19 14.14-21 38n3 20. 6.13 14.20 13-14 14.15 20.2-4 14.5-9 34 115.

48n2. S. 202 Diebner. I. R. V. 15n3. 144.2. 91n3. 150. 95n2. 36n7. 190 Elliger. 161nl Henry. 16. 190. 173nl. 199. 163nl Rad. 143n3. 24. 136. O. 111. 24. B. 151n4. 103n4. K. 99n2. 39n3 Cassuto.D. 37 Noth. 154. 52n2. 143n5. 127.4. H. 17. 49.F. H. 31n3. 118 Eissfeldt.4. 139n6 Gunkel.R. L. 118n7 Kaiser. 149. 117n6 Beyerlin. 155n2 Mowinckel. 38. 125. 107. 107nl Gazelles. 60. 36. 143n5. von 12. 60n2. S. 119-21. 151. N. 11. 118. 112n4. llnnl. 145. F. 120-22. H. 129. 99 Plöger. 129. 106.G. 117. 18. M. 46. 14nn2. 13nl. 102.-E. G. 124. 153. 155 Jepsen. J. 23n2 Preuss. 135nn2. 138nl. 163nl. 110n6. A. 112n3.7. B. 19nl.C. 203n4 Kaufmann. 195nl Kilian.INDEX OF AUTHORS Bentzen. 117. 14n3. 14. A. J. 201 Pedersen. 143n5. 20n3. 125. 116.2. 144. W. 187nl Ploger. 116n4 Delitzsch. H. 39nl Gross. O. 115n2. 15. U. 14. 66nl Procksch. 113. 18n3.50nnl. 18. 18n3. 12n3. 141. 145nl. 116 Hermann. 15. 22. 18nnl. 22nl. 144.4. 46n4. 17n3. 122. 16n2. 186 Perlitt. S. 25n2. 105. . 203nl Fritz. 46. 22.3. 50. 147-49. F. 112. 118. 203n3 Macholz.6. 139nl. 147. 46nl Diebner. 52nl. 154 Koch. 40. 21. 115nl. 121n8. R. 24. 107. 107nl Kessler. 174. 141nnl. 51nnl. G. 142. 28-30. 157 Ellis. 121 Knobel. 27. 154n5. W.J. 90n5. 144. 44. 128. 18nn2. 154 Driver. G.W. 47. 19. 141nl. 17. 30nl. 50. 124 Engnell. 121. 174. 115nl. 128. 17n2. 118n2. K 138. 20. 121n4. P. 36. 174. 139. O. 137. 128. 75n2. 102. 142. Kautzsch 158nl Gressmann. 128n8. 191. 13. 105. 22. 35. 35. 51n7. 154. A. 104. 154. 13. 179. A. 50n3. 138n6 Coppens. 143.4.-H. 13. 147-53.-L. 103. 122. 45. 17n3. 124. 151.112. 135nn2. 27. 121 Gesenius. 138nl. 151nl. 20. O.3.107nl Fohrer. 44n2. 21. 104n3. 70nl. 155.l81n2 Dillmann. 140. 43. 121n8. 16. 153. 135nn2. H. 14. 38n3. 11. 45n3. 46n2. 132n3. 181nl. 120 Lohfink. 113-15. W. 39n4. 186n2 Holzinger. 12n2. 103n4. 119-21. 19. 14n5. 86nl. 38n2. Y. M. 105. 139. 38n3. 107. 33. 39. Schult.

91nl. 133. 203n2 Zimmerli. 198. 183n3.B. 118n6 Vetter. 155. 110. J.214 The Process of Transmission in the Pentateuch Steuernagel. 133. 185n6. 45. 118n2 Stolz. 114. 149n4. A. 183nl. 47.132. 163 Weiser. K. 85n2. 132n2 Rupprecht.1 77. 38nl Wellhausen. 118. 90. 64. 108. P. 154. 186n2.130. 47. 103n3. H. 182nl. 127. 125. 102n3 Seters. van 181n2. 172nl. 133n3. 146nl. 103.127.H. 128. 179nl SeUin. 48nl. 181nl. 60. 126n5. 32-34. 16nl.. R. 56. 206 Redfern. 185n2 .W. 123. 142n2.H. 173. Fohrer 31n3. 114. 109n2. 85nl. C. 121n6. 64nl. 132n2. 185nl. 175n2. E. 116. 12nl. 181n2 Schmidt. 132n3. 150. 25. E-G. 34. 174. 132n2. 157. 110n2 Wolff. 123125. R. 65. 130. 25nl.E. 123n6. H. 138n6. 106.130n2. D. 26. 140. 11. 47nl. 45. 11. 194n5 Ringgren. T. 111. 138.H. 36. 44. 131n2. 53nl. 103n3. 61n2. 16nl Rost. 73nl. N. 134. 204n2 Smend. 154 Steck. 65n3. 111. 99nl Schmid. 106. 110n2 Rendtorff. 103. 142. 144nl.A. 109n2. 131. J.126n4. 132. 61n2. W. 168n6 22. 26n7. 66nl Vriezen. L. 112. 107 Weimar. H. D. 51n7. O.N. 57. 27-29. 114-116. 131n2. 198n3 Wagner. 103. 114. 21n7. 33n3.184 184n2. R. 46n3. 172 Westermann. 109. F. C.2 Whybray. 37.C. 23n2. 143n4. 33. W. 123. 53. 23n2 Speiser.

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