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Arguing with AsenethGentile Access to Israel's Living God in Jewish Antiquity$
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Jill Hicks-Keeton

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190878993

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190878993.001.0001

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Executing Boundaries

Executing Boundaries

Israel’s “Living God” in Deuteronomy and the Deuteronomistic History

Chapter:
(p.67) 3 Executing Boundaries
Source:
Arguing with Aseneth
Author(s):

Jill Hicks-Keeton

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190878993.003.0004

Chapter 3 makes a new suggestion about the categories of inclusion operative in Joseph and Aseneth: Aseneth is anachronistically incorporated into the covenant forged by Israel’s “living God” at Sinai. Joseph and Aseneth’s portrayal of Israel’s “living God” as giver of life to Aseneth, a foreigner originally external to the covenant, is a revision of a Deuteronomic literary motif surrounding the epithet. Deuteronomy’s “living God” exercises ultimate authority over who lives and who dies and uses this prerogative, in part, to separate Israel from other nations. Joseph and Aseneth engaged and adapted this cultural repertoire to reflect on the proper relationship between Joseph and Aseneth and on the possibilities for the relationship between Aseneth and Israel’s God. Comparison with the narratives of the Deuteronomistic History, particularly that of David and Goliath, further illuminates the ideology that Joseph and Aseneth constructs surrounding the relationship of Israel’s “living God” to covenantal outsiders.

Keywords:   Septuagint, Joseph and Aseneth, living God, Sinai covenant, Deuteronomy, David and Goliath, Jew/gentile boundaries, ethnicity

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