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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

When I Die, Bury Me Well: Death, Burial, Almsgiving, and Restoration in the Book of Tobit
Macatangay, Francis M.

Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2016 pp. xii + 111. $17.00

Description: Sennacherib put to death many Israelites. So I stole their bodies to bury them; Sennacherib looked for them and he could not find them. Why do we bury the dead? To honor and respect them? To provide closure and comfort to the living? To provide the dead a final resting place? Tobit buried the dead as the ultimate work of mercy, and its pervasive presence in the narrative discourse of the book of Tobit invites reflection on and consideration of the reason for the practice of burial. The narrative drama radiates a universal sense of what it means to be in exile, namely, that it is an experience of death. Weaving together a complex of ideas related to Israelite interment practices and the reality of Israel's exile from the land given to them by God, this book explores the significance of burial as it relates to God's outstanding promises and Tobit's hopes for the household of Jacob.

Subjects: Bible, Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha, Old Testament Apocrypha, Tobit, Literature

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Review by Micah D. Kiel
Published 3/15/2018
Citation: Micah D. Kiel, review of Francis M. Macatangay, When I Die, Bury Me Well: Death, Burial, Almsgiving, and Restoration in the Book of Tobit, Review of Biblical Literature [] (2018).

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