[b-hebrew] Re: Job & Sumer

david.kimbrough at charter.net david.kimbrough at charter.net
Thu Jun 10 23:02:11 EDT 2004


Naturally you right, the LXX and DSS are not the oldest 
records of Hebrew writing.  The LXX is in Greek.  What I 
said was they were the oldest versions of Job we have.

There is ample evidence that both the Babylonians and 
Sumerians had Job-like poems well into the 2nd Millennium 
BC.  There is no evidence that there was any language 
anyone would call ?Hebrew? in the same time period, much 
less a sophisticated body of Job-like poetry.  Maybe there 
was and we just don?t know about it.  However to suppose 
there was without evidence is speculation.  Scholars have 
to work with the evidence at hand.  

In any event any Israelites around at the time were 
shepherds who, according to traditional chronologies, were 
in captivity in Egypt. 


> From: Dave Washburn <dwashbur at nyx.net>
> Date: 2004/06/11 Fri AM 12:26:06 GMT
> To: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
> Subject: [b-hebrew] Re: Job & Sumer
> 
> Sure, why not?  We're dealing with what I call the 
accident of preservation, 
> for one thing.  The LXX and DSS were done on parchment or 
papyrus, whereas 
> the Sumerian documents were done on fired clay.  Is one 
likely to survive 
> longer than the other?  I would hope so.  Furthermore, 
the DSS are not the 
> oldest examples of "recorded Hebrew writing" that we 
have.  ISTM that the 
> paragraph below has one standard for Sumerian and another 
for Hebrew, which 
> is not a valid procedure.  We have no real idea how old 
the Hebrew language 
> is, and were it not for the accident of preservation, we 
wouldn't have any 
> idea that Sumerian ever existed.  Basing such crucial 
decisions on the whims 
> of nature seems like shaky ground to me.
> 
> On Thursday 10 June 2004 11:41, 
david.kimbrough at charter.net wrote:
> > Dave,
> >
> > Do you really think that a 4,000 year old Sumerian 
cuneiform poem is
> > derived from a Hebrew poem.  One Sumerian version is 
dated at 1700 BC
> > (Ludlul Bêl Nimeqi), hundreds of years before any 
recorded Hebrew writing. 
> > The earliest surviving version of Job are the LXX or 
DSS, which are, round
> > 2,000 years old.  It seems like a slam-dunk to me.
> >
> > > From: Dave Washburn <dwashbur at nyx.net>
> > > Date: 2004/06/10 Thu PM 05:08:04 GMT
> > > To: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
> > > Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Job
> > >
> > > Here's the part that has always bugged me: how do you 
know that these
> > > other poems aren't renditions or derived from a very 
old Job story?  I
> > > know it's chic to assume that the HB came last, but 
I've never seen a
> > > good basis for such assumptions.  For that matter, 
why not conclude that
> > > such a theme was popular in the ANE and several 
cultures built stories
> > > around it?  There are lots of ways to look at this.
> > >
> > > On Thursday 10 June 2004 10:56, 
david.kimbrough at charter.net wrote:
> > > > Chris,
> > > >
> > > > Job is a Hebrew rendition of a much older poem, 
"The Righteous
> > > > Sufferer" which is known both in Sumerian and 
Babylonian.  The basic
> > > > themes are same, a righteous man who performs all 
of the correct
> > > > sacrifices and ceremonies falls from grace with the 
gods and suffers
> > > > terrible afflictions.  He struggles to understand 
how bad things
> > > > happened to righteous men but expresses despair 
ever knowing.  A little
> > > > snippet -
> > > >
> > > > My god has forsaken me and disappeared,
> > > > My goddess has failed me and keeps at a distance.
> > > > The benevolent angel who walked beside me has 
departed,
> > > > My protecting spirit has taken to flight, and is 
seeking someone else.
> > > > My strength is gone; my appearance has become 
gloomy;
> > > > My dignity has flown away, my protection made 
off....
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > David Kimbrough
> > > > San Gabriel
> > > >
> > > > _______________________________________________
> > > > b-hebrew mailing list
> > > > b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> > > > http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/b-hebrew
> > >
> > > --
> > > Dave Washburn
> > > http://www.nyx.net/~dwashbur
> > > Learning about Christianity from a non-Christian
> > > is like getting a kiss over the telephone.
> > >
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > b-hebrew mailing list
> > > b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> > > http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/b-hebrew
> >
> > David Kimbrough
> > San Gabriel
> 
> -- 
> Dave Washburn
> http://www.nyx.net/~dwashbur
> Learning about Christianity from a non-Christian
> is like getting a kiss over the telephone.
> 
> _______________________________________________
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> b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
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> 

David Kimbrough
San Gabriel




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