Although there is quite a difference in time between the writing of the Hebrew Bible and the carving of the Ugaritic texts, researchers are still discovering similarities between the two text corpuses (for example new word pairs, literary phrases and a common cultural background). In this dissertation Psalm 82 was examined together with the Kirtu story. O’Callaghan (1953) and Van Zijl (1972) pointed out similarities between the two texts, previously. Yet these similarities were not investigated in a structured way and there existed the possibility that more similarities (and also dissimilarities) existed between the texts. Psalm 82 and selected sections of the Kirtu story are analysed using the text immanent method. The known similarities are reaffirmed and new ones identified. To avoid analysing the whole Kirtu story, it is first summarised. Thereafter the writer analyses the following passages in depth: CTA 15 ii 1-iii 19; CTA 16 i 1-23; CTA 16 ii 96-iii 17; CTA 16 v 1-52 and CTA 16 vi 25-58. After the respective analyses, similarities on the linguistic and conceptual levels are recorded. Attention is also drawn to the respective environments in which the two texts originated. Consequently, possible elements, consisting of similar cultural goods, are given prominence. On linguistic level various words, which occur in both texts, are recorded. Accordingly it is concluded that the two texts have the following ideas in common: the council of the gods; the immortality of a god; a god’s sense of duty; the connection between the two previously named concepts; the cosmic consequences when rulers neglect their duties and the relationship between the chief god and the other gods. This study reaffirmed the common Near Eastern background of the Kirtu story and Psalm 82. The question arose what the implication of a similar milieu between the two texts would entail. The writer concluded that the Kirtu story assisted with the understanding of the word µyhil¿aÔ in Psalm 82: 1c and 6a. There was sufficient evidence from the two texts that µyhil¿aÔ should be translated with ‘gods.’ For the poet and his audience the µyhil¿aÔ were true gods and not heavenly beings or people or both. Psalm 82 and the Kirtu story both originated against the backdrop of pending disaster. Through the general themes of ‘righteousness’ and ‘God’s / the gods’ upholding thereof,’ the poets attempted to give sense in their respective situations. New possibilities to interpret Psalm 82 had been discovered after similarities between this psalm and the Kirtu Story were identified and discussed. The Kirtu story aided the reader in his / her understanding of Psalm 82.
Dissertation (MA (Semitic Languages))--University of Pretoria, 2007.