Click here to get the answers to the most commonly asked RBL questions.

Review of Biblical Literature Blog

The Surprising Election and Confirmation of King David
Short, J. Randall

Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2010 pp. xiii + 244. $25.00

Series Information
Harvard Theological Studies, 63


Description: Some of the best-known biblical episodes are found in the story of David’s rise to kingship in First and Second Samuel. Why was this series of stories included in the Bible? An answer that has become increasingly popular is that this narrative should be interpreted as the “apology of David,” that is, the personal justification of King David against charges that he illegitimately usurped Saul’s throne. Comparisons between “the History of David’s Rise” and the Hittite “Apology of Hattušili,” in particular, appear to support this view that the biblical account belongs to the genre of ancient Near Eastern royal apology. Having presented this approach, Randall Short argues that the biblical account has less in common with the Hittite apology than scholars have asserted, and he demonstrates how interpretive assumptions about the historical reality behind the text inform the meaning that these scholars discern in the text. His central contention is that this story should not be interpreted as the personal exoneration of David composed to win over suspicious readers. Rather, composed for faithful readers represented by David, the story depicts the dramatic confirmation of David’s surprising election through his gradual emergence as the beloved son of Jesse, Saul, all Israel, and yhwh Himself.

Subjects: Bible, Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, Historical Books, 1-2 Samuel, Literature

Login to Read the Review(s)

You must be a member of SBL to read the review(s). Enter your SBL Member ID and click the "Log in" button. Your use of this site indicates your acceptance of RBL’s Terms of Use.

I don’t remember my SBL Member ID.

Join SBL or renew your membership to read the review(s).



SBL Membership Id:  


Review by Steven L. McKenzie
Published 5/10/2011
Citation: Steven L. McKenzie, review of J. Randall Short, The Surprising Election and Confirmation of King David, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2011).


Review by David G. Firth
Published 10/22/2011
Citation: David G. Firth, review of J. Randall Short, The Surprising Election and Confirmation of King David, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2011).


Adobe Acrobat Reader
All RBL reviews are published in PDF format. To view these reviews, you must have downloaded and installed the FREE version of Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you do not have the Reader or you have an older version of the Reader, you can download the most recent version now.

 

 
Privacy PolicyTerms of UseContact Us