Pseudepigrapha Saturday: Jubilees

The Biblical Review

Introduction to the Text:

Jubilees is presented as a historical account of past events; however, unlike older historiographical texts like Kings and Joshua, Jubilees filters the Torah (Genesis-Deuteronomy) through the priestly author’s lens. At this point, it is one of the most helpful literary texts in reconstructing the priestly community from the 2nd century BCE in the midst of Maccabean battles. While Jubilees is a treasure trove of theological and historical data, I will focus primarily on the re-written creation account.

Creation, Tohu, Bohu, and Tehom:

Ancient Near Eastern myth making took place within a cognitive environment that generally used “Order” and “Chaos” to represent alternative power structures, Order being the positive, encouraged structure and Chaos being the negative, discouraged structure. In the past scholars have noted that the tohu and bohu, and tehom, of Genesis 1:2 too a certain extent reflect the ancient Near…

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