The extent (brevity or development) of your responses can vary as you choose.

  1. How did the Assyrian empire and the Assyrian conquests affect the two kingdoms and the lives of the people?  And how did these conquests prompt the writing of biblical literature?  What does this tell you about biblical literature?
  2. What did the Deuteronomist reforms consist of, and how were king Josiah and the prophet Jeremiah involved in these attempted reforms?  How did the book of Deuteronomy itself (at least its original core) play a role in these reforms? (Refer also to the book of 2 Kings 22-23.)
  3. How does Deuteronomy “exemplif[y] a phenomenon that occurs at several critical junctures in Israel’s history – the modification and rewriting of earlier laws and traditions in light of new circumstances and ideas”? (Refer to Hayes, chapter 11, specifically 171-77)  How does that idea enhance your understanding of biblical law and the purpose(s) of ‘law’ itself?
  4. Often as modern Westerners, there is a tendency to regard ‘law’ as restrictive.  But for ancient Israelites, law would have been understood far more positively as ensuring the conditions that support the wellbeing of society from social disintegration and the dangers of chaos.  Describe the way you envision the relationship between law and freedom.
  5. How do you see today’s Church/Christian/Jewish writings or literature responding to the challenges of today and calling for reform?

Submission Instructions:

  • Your initial post should be at least 250-300 words for each discussion post, formatted and cited in the current APA style.
  • Provide support for your work from at least two academic sources less than five years old.

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