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"In the house of Judah, my father’s house": the character of Joab in the book of Chronicles

Faculty Advisor




Bible, book of Chronicles, Joab

Abstract (summary)

An inadequately explored area of biblical scholarship in the book of Chronicles is the character of Joab. One of the primary reasons for this scholarly oversight may be that in omitting a sizeable portion of the Davidic narratives in which Joab figures prominently, the Chronicler (hereafter, “Chr”) has left a somewhat exiguous witness to Joab. Aside from his inclusion in the Davidide genealogy in 1 Chr 2:16 and other passing references (1 Chr 11:20, 26, 39; 18:15; 26:28; 27:7, 24, 34), there are only three pericopes in Chronicles in which Joab figures prominently: 1 Chr 11:4–9; 19:1–20:3; and 21:1–22:1. Interestingly, all three pericopes are reconstructions of parallel texts in 2 Samuel, and a closer examination of each pericope reveals that the Chr’s compositional activity directly concerns the characterization of Joab. This present study will investigate and elucidate the Chr’s portrait of Joab, focusing primarily on these pericopes, and then briefly consider the implications that this portrait might have for evaluating the Chr’s ideology.

Publication Information

Ristau, K. A. (2015). "In the house of Judah, my father’s house": the character of Joab in the book of Chronicles. In I. D. Wilson, & D. V. Edelman (Eds.), History, memory, Hebrew scriptures: A festschrift for Ehud Ben Zvi (pp. 133-150). Eisenbrauns.



Item Type

Book Chapter



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