This book discusses the ethically problematic passages of the Hebrew Bible and the way scholars have addressed aspects of the bible generally regarded as offensive and unacceptable. In this work Eryl W. Davies sums up a career's worth of in-depth reflection on the thorny issue of biblical ethics examining the bible's, at times problematic, stance upon slavery, polygamy and perhaps its most troublesome aspect, the sanctioning of violence and warfare. This is most pertinent in respect to "Joshua" 6-11 a text which lauds the 'holy war' of the Israelites, anihiliting the native inhabitants of Canaan, and a text which has been used to legitimise the actions of white colonists in North America, the Boers in South Africa and right-wing Zionists in modern Israel. Davies begins with an introductory chapter assessing all these aspects, he then provides five chapters, each devoted to a particular strategy aimed at mitigating the embarrassment caused by the presence of such problematic texts within the canon. In order to focus discussion each strategy is linked by to "Joshua" 6-11.
A final chapter draws the threads of the arguments together and suggests the most promising areas for the future development of the discipline.
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC