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Ezekiel's oracles against the nations in light of a royal ideology of warfare

Crouch, C.L.


C.L. Crouch


Over the last few decades a steady stream of scholarship has argued for a mythological background to the oracles against the nations (OANs) in the book of Ezekiel.1 Very few studies, however, have attempted to make overarching sense of Ezekiel’s use of mythological motifs, either in the oracles or as part of the theological and literary project of the book. This essay will argue that Ezekiel’s use of mythological motifs of a cosmological type, both in the cycle of OANs and as part of the book as a whole, is derived from the royal military ideology that was current in Jerusalem prior to the exile, and that the oracles constitute a direct attempt to incorporate the experience of exile into this ideology. Ultimately, however, Ezekiel’s initial efforts to this end were perceived to have failed, and alternative ideological explanations of warfare were introduced, either by Ezekiel himself or by an editor. I will conclude by addressing the accrual of this additional material.


Crouch, C. (2011). Ezekiel's oracles against the nations in light of a royal ideology of warfare. Journal of Biblical Literature, 130(3),

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Oct 31, 2011
Deposit Date Apr 19, 2017
Publicly Available Date Apr 19, 2017
Journal Journal of Biblical Literature
Print ISSN 0021-9231
Electronic ISSN 1934-3876
Publisher Society of Biblical Literature
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 130
Issue 3
Keywords Oracles, Mythology, Creation myths, Kingship, Theology, Laments, Kings, Literature, Divinity, Allusion
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Additional Information c2011 Society of Biblical Literature


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