The Deliverance Of Rahab (Joshua 2, 6) As The Gentile Exodus -- By: Nicholas P. Lunn

Journal: Tyndale Bulletin
Volume: TYNBUL 65:1 (NA 2014)
Article: The Deliverance Of Rahab (Joshua 2, 6) As The Gentile Exodus
Author: Nicholas P. Lunn

The Deliverance Of Rahab (Joshua 2, 6) As The Gentile Exodus

Nicholas P. Lunn


This short article argues for an intertextual interpretation of the Rahab narratives in the book of Joshua in the light of the deliverance of the Hebrews from Egypt as recorded in the book of Exodus. The presence of a range of different verbal and thematic correspondences supports such a notion. This is further confirmed once a structural parallelism between the two portions of text is identified. Suggestions are given as to what the relationship was designed to indicate.

1. Introduction

Literary studies of biblical texts have brought to light many instances in which it appears that a text in one part of the Hebrew canon may be seen to have been intended to interact with another text elsewhere in the canon. This is the phenomenon commonly termed ‘intertextuality’.1 Studies in recent decades have brought to light numerous examples of this literary feature, some of which are now so commonly referenced that they have almost become case examples. Amongst these latter may be included the interaction between Judges 19 relating matters of hospitality and sin in connection with Gibeah, and Genesis 19 concerning the sin of Sodom and hospitality of Lot.2 Such textual

interaction of course plays a role in interpretation. When the actions of an Israelite town in Judges are compared with Sodom in Genesis the implications are not inconsequential. Rather there is an important, though implicit, statement on the part of the author upon the spiritual condition of the nation at the time of the judges.3 Another reasonably apparent example is the relationship between 1 Kings 12 where Jeroboam makes calf idols for Israel to worship and Exodus 32 regarding the worship of the golden calf.4

This paper identifies another such intertextual relationship between two portions of the Old Testament. These are on one hand those passages in Judges concerned with Rahab and the fall of Jericho, found principally in chapters 2 and 6, and on the other hand the account of the departure of Israel from Egypt. The former of these are found principally in chapters 2

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