Where precisely should the study of the Pentateuch start? This study in unison with the insight of the Pentateuch scholar Eckart Otto starts at Deuternonomy. Africa has a long and rich history of Biblical scholarship.A critical discourse of the Pentateuch has been kindled in South-Africa for more than the past decade through ProPent, the project for the study of the Pentateuch. This study is done in the space that was created with the Pentateuch theory that emerged out of this global encounter. Deuternonomy is the cradle of the Pentateuch and has its origin in the loyalty oath of Esarhaddon in the seventh century B.C. This oath was subversively recepted through a political theology during the reign of the Assirian Empire. The Middle Assirian Law codes, the Covenart Code and the Decalog were all used in creating Deuteronomany 12-26. It is in exile, that a sequence of redactions started which continued post-exilic when the Priestly Code of the Levites was merged with the Zadokite theology of Deuternonomy in Jerusalem. This study takes a closer look at the spy stories in Numbers, Joshua and especially Deuternonomy 1:19-46. The point is made that it is authentically these stories that wove the Pentateuch into the crown jewel of the First Testament and the Bible. With the various redactions that took place these stories create a close knit plot for the Pentateuch. This resulted in a space being created where different theologies can co-exist and fruitfully entice the people of Jahwe to trust and obey Him and to enjoy the blessing of the promised land.
Dissertation (MA(Theol))--University of Pretoria, 2013.