By Dominic Rudman
Qoheleth's determinism, its dating to loose will and its philosophical heritage facts its authorship via a third-century sage encouraged by means of Stoic principles. Is the writer of Ecclesisastes a determinist? Many readers, from the Targumist and lbn Ezra as much as the current day, have proposal so. yet there was no systematic research of Qoheleth's determinism, its nature and quantity, its courting to loose will and its philosophical historical past. In separate chapters, Rudman discusses keywords and texts that categorical a deterministic worldview, then explores the assets for Qoheleth's suggestion. He concludes that the writer used to be a sage writing within the 3rd sector of the 3rd century BCE, who used to be profoundly motivated through Stoic principles.
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Extra resources for Determinism in the Book of Ecclesiastes (JSOT Supplement)
11-20, NEB) The precise relationship between Ben Sira and Ecclesiastes remains unclear, but the passage above may suggest that some parts of Stoic deterministic theory exerted an influence over Judaic thought before the Greek domination over Palestine came to an end. On the other hand, evidence also exists for a deterministic worldview in biblical texts that date from before the Hellenistic period. Under these circumstances, the explanation offered by the sinner for his actions in this passage from Ben Sira may be seen as being in line with purely Judaic thought.
Like fishes caught in an evil net [nilHQ]; like birds taken in a snare [PIS], so human beings are caught at the appointed time [HI7] when it falls suddenly on them'. Quite apart from the reference to such events happening at an 'appointed time' (the very opposite of chance), the metaphor suggests a controlling force: a fisher or birdcatcher. While the term flS ('snare') is a neutral one, rnii£Q tells the identity of this fisherman: it is God. Elsewhere in the Hebrew Bible, the term occurs four times (Ps.
10), so that whoever receives a portion of this land (Num. 53; Josh.
Determinism in the Book of Ecclesiastes (JSOT Supplement) by Dominic Rudman