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God, Justice, and SocietyAspects of Law and Legality in the Bible$
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Jonathan Burnside

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199759217

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199759217.001.0001

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A Deal With God

A Deal With God

(p.31) 2 A Deal With God
God, Justice, and Society

Jonathan Burnside

Oxford University Press

This chapter looks at how covenants are used in the Bible and the ancient Near East and traces variations in the basic covenant formula. It considers the main turning points in the history of covenantal relations between God and humanity, including the covenant between God and Abraham and between God and Israel at Mount Sinai, which is seen as a “vocational” covenant. It also suggests an outline of the formal, final, text of the covenant which was deposited in the Ark of the Covenant. The chapter explores key aspects of the story of Moses delivering the Ten Commandments, which has the most complicated narrative structure of any aspect of biblical law. It also considers the place of “new covenant” language in both the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament, and the nature of these developments.

Keywords:   Abraham, Ark of the Covenant, covenant formula, God, Mount Sinai, new covenant, Ten Commandments, vocational covenant

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