By R. B. Salters

For over 100 years foreign severe Commentaries have had a different position between works in English at the Bible. they've got sought to collect all of the appropriate aids to exegesis, linguistic and textual a minimum of archaeological, old, literary and theological, to assist the reader comprehend the which means of the books of the outdated and New Testaments.

The new commentaries proceed this custom. New facts now on hand, in addition to new tools of research, could be included within the convinced expectation that there'll be a fair higher desire for such commentaries within the twenty-first century than there was within the past.

No test has been made to safe a uniform theological or serious method of the biblical textual content: participants were invited for his or her scholarly contrast, now not for his or her adherence to anybody tuition of proposal. it truly is was hoping that the hot volumes will reach the excessive criteria in their predecessors and give a contribution considerably to the knowledge of the books of the Bible.

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26 27 INTRODUCTION 11 We must, however, realise that the compositions that have come down to us are not, as they stand, the raw reactions to the events of 586 BCE. 29 There is no doubt that the survivors of the catastrophe will have reacted immediately with horror and grief. Many expressions of misery, affliction and sad reflections will have escaped the lips of these people who now struggled to come to terms with the loss of their city, their temple, their family and their way of life. These utterances—and there would be a multitude and a growing number of them—would be shared and repeated to such an extent that, when the community of survivors came to remember and to commemorate the calamity of 586, the now familiar phrases and vocabulary would be employed by those (the poets) who gave voice to the feelings of the people.

25). This passage reads: ‘Jeremiah also uttered a lament for Josiah, and all the singing men and singing women have spoken of Josiah in their laments to this day. They made these a custom in Israel; they are recorded in the Laments (twOnyQih)' ’. After Josephus (Ant. 1) refers to the death of Josiah, he says, ‘But all the people mourned greatly for him, lamenting and grieving on his account many days; and Jeremiah the prophet composed an elegy to lament him, which is extant till this time also’.

Blaney’s 1784 commentary is entitled The Lamentations of Jeremiah, and in the introduction the author does not feel the need to discuss authorship. ) thinks that Jeremiah wrote only chs. 2 and 4, while Ewald (326) rejects Jeremian authorship entirely and attributes the book to ‘Barûkh oder ein anderer’. It would seem, therefore, that the first questioning of Jeremian authorship—by von der Hardt (1712, [7])—had, to some extent, fallen on deaf ears or had not been taken seriously, in that a full century had elapsed before the question was raised 8 INTRODUCTION 5 declares ‘…I know not how the conclusion can be escaped, that Jeremiah could not have written the Lamentations’.

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