Ken Smith kens at
Mon Jan 28 18:50:20 EST 2002

That may very well be true -- but I guess that doesn't answer my question, or make much difference to my point.  The rest of chapter 7 seems to reflect conditions in pre-exilic Jerusalem.  (Unless you want to make the argument that there's conscious anachronism taking place, in which case folks who can tell the difference between that and the real thing must be far more sophisticated and intelligent than I am.  I tend to be the sort who assumes that if he can't see the invisible cat on the chair, there probably isn't one.)  What would be the point of a lengthy argument against a naïve "Zion theology" which assumed that the temple couldn't be molested if, in fact, the temple had already been destroyed?  Whether chapter 7 comes from the historical Jeremiah or not, if you're looking for a "sitz im leben" in which it makes sense, Jerusalem prior to 586 seems by far the simplest explanation.

But even if it *was* written after 586, and was written as a sort of prophecy in reverse, conscious anachronisms and all, it still had to have been written close to the time of the destruction of the temple, when it was still a live issue.  This chapter doesn't sound at all like the other acknowledged exilic or post-exilic writings, which are far more concerned with the future of God's people, and occasionally the Second Temple, but in a very different way.  Whether by Jeremiah or not, and whether prior to 586 or not, I don't see any reasonable way to deny that it was written very close to or around that time -- and hence the author -- and more importantly, his audience -- would have been in a position to know what was or wasn't happening in Ben Hinnom, don't you think?


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Lisbeth S. Fried [mailto:lizfried at] 
> Sent: Monday, January 28, 2002 3:37 PM
> To: Ken Smith; Biblical Hebrew
> Subject: RE: Sacrifice.
> Dear Ken,
> Not all of Jeremiah was written by the Prophet himself.
> I recommend any recent commentary on the book.
> Liz
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Ken Smith [mailto:kens at]
> > Sent: Mon, January 28, 2002 6:27 PM
> > To: Biblical Hebrew
> > Subject: RE: Sacrifice.
> > 
> > 
> > Not to dispute the results of the archaeological investigations you 
> > refer to, but how would you reconcile the account in Jeremiah 7:31 
> > with what has been uncovered archaeologically?  After all, 
> Jeremiah 7 
> > is presumably a highly contemporary account.  (Unlike, say, the 
> > accounts of the conquest, which in their present form are 
> pretty well 
> > acknowledged to be much later than the conquest itself.)  Would 
> > Jeremiah have bothered to attack a practice that, well, wasn't 
> > practiced?  I'm no fundie, and don't have any trouble acknowledging 
> > that the Bible and history as known from other sources don't always 
> > match -- but I would expect that an account from a 
> contemporary, local 
> > eyewitness such as Jeremiah would have to be given 
> considerable weight 
> > even by those who have nothing riding on Biblical 
> inerrancy.  Jeremiah 
> > was already unpopular enough around Jerusalem -- he wouldn't have 
> > bothered to make something like this up, would he?
> > 
> > In other words, is it legitimate, in this instance, to question the 
> > archaeological results?  Are there any blank spots in those 
> > investigations that could leave room for Jeremiah's 
> accusations to be 
> > taken seriously?  Is perhaps a judgment of non liquet the 
> best we can 
> > do at the moment?
> > 
> > Ken Smith

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