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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Self-Interest or Communal Interest: An Ideology of Leadership in the Gideon, Abimelech and Jephthah Narratives (Judg 6-12)
Assis, Elie

Leiden: Brill, 2005 pp. xiv + 263. $132.00

Series Information
Supplements to Vetus Testamentum, 106



Description: This book provides an extensive literary analysis of the Gideon, Abimelech and Jephthah narratives in Judges 6-12, and discloses the main intention of these stories. The book consists of three chapters, each of which analyses the respective biblical narratives. These narratives show the two parameters by which the Israelite leaders are examined, namely their loyalty to God and their altruistic character: A leader who prefers his own interest is doomed to his own demise and brings devastation upon his people. Judges does not establish a preferred governmental model, instead it considers the advantages and disadvantages of the different types of regimes. In the epilogue it is suggested that these narratives are conveniently placed in the pre-monarchic period when the question of the regime becomes part of the political debate. The book of Judges offers criteria for the choice of the right leader.

Subjects: Bible, Hebrew Bible / Old Testament, Historical Books, Judges, Literature, Methods, Literary Approaches


Review by Yairah Amit
Read the Review
Published 5/12/2007
Citation: Yairah Amit, review of Elie Assis, Self-Interest or Communal Interest: An Ideology of Leadership in the Gideon, Abimelech and Jephthah Narratives (Judg 6-12), Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2007).


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