Deuteronomy 6-8 And The History Of Interpretation: An Exposition On The First Two Commandments -- By: Justin M. Fuhrmann

Journal: Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society
Volume: JETS 53:1 (Mar 2010)
Article: Deuteronomy 6-8 And The History Of Interpretation: An Exposition On The First Two Commandments
Author: Justin M. Fuhrmann


Deuteronomy 6-8 And The History Of Interpretation: An Exposition On The First Two Commandments

Justin M. Fuhrmann

Justin M. Fuhrmann is a doctoral candidate in NT at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, 2065 Half Day Road, Deerfield, IL 60015.

Deuteronomy has been hailed one of the most important theological works in the OT, both in terms of its place in the canon and its place in Jewish and Christian traditions and practices. It stands between the promise of land to the patriarchs (Gen 17:18-21) and its fulfillment in the conquest and United Monarchy. The material in the so-called parenetic section (Deut 5-11) presents the great statements of Jewish faith, the Decalogue (Deut 5:6-21) and the shema (6:4-5), which are both upheld in the NT teachings of Jesus (cf. Matt 22:37-38; Mark 12:29-30; et al.). This significance is particularly highlighted in Deuteronomy 6-8, which emphasizes the themes of promise (6:3, 10; 7:8-9, 12, 14; 8:1, 18) and fulfillment (6:3, 10-11, 18-19, 23; 7:1, 13-15, 22-24; 8:7-10), and functions as an exposition upon the Decalogue and its positive restatement in the shema.

Since the nineteenth century, however, Deuteronomy, and chapters 6-8 in particular, have come under attack by higher critical scholars. Although the book presents itself as Mosaic, that is, speeches given by Moses to Israel before crossing the Jordan River and entering the promised land (Deut 1:1), scholars since W. M. L. de Wette (1805) have sought a Josianic date (c. 622/621 BC) due to (1) 2 Kgs 22:8’s reference to “the book of the law,” which only appears in Deuteronomy among the books of the Torah (Deut 28:58, ...

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