Original Research - Special Collection: P.M. Venter Dedication

Divide and be different: Priestly identity in the Persian period

Esias E. Meyer
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 68, No 1 | a1202 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v68i1.1202 | © 2012 Esias E. Meyer | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 06 December 2011 | Published: 20 July 2012

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Esias E. Meyer, Department of Old Testament Studies, University of Pretoria, South Africa

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The article focused on the Hebrew root לדב [divide] [bdl] in Priestly and post-Priestly material of the Pentateuch. In Genesis 1 God is the subject of the verb and often enough in the Holiness Code, but in many instances in Leviticus (e.g. 10:10 and 11:47) it is expected of priests to perform the same act. It was argued that in this regard priests were to imitate God. The article further argued that these texts helped us to describe Jewish identity in the Persian period as an identity of non-conformity, and they also helped us to describe the priests’ own understanding of their role in maintaining this identity.


Priestly Text; Leviticus; Holiness Code; Imitatio Dei; Persian Period


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