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  • 1
    Language: English
    Year of publication: 2022
    Titel der Quelle: Journal of Religion
    Angaben zur Quelle: 102,2 (2022) 184-203
    Keywords: Caspi, Joseph, Criticism and interpretation ; Maimonides, Moses, Influence ; Bible Criticism, interpretation, etc., Jewish Middle Ages, 600-1500 ; History ; Contradiction in literature
    Abstract: The Provençal philosopher, biblical commentator, and grammarian Joseph Ibn Kaspi interprets some of the internal contradictions in the biblical text by using a methodology based on Maimonides’s Guide of the Perplexed. By drawing on Maimonides’s seven categories of contradictions, he argues that the first, third, fourth, and seventh type of contradictions explain inconsistencies within the Bible. He recognizes the first contradiction in the subjective influence of different biblical authors; the third contradiction in the differing parables of the resurrection of the dead; the fourth contradiction in whether or not children are punished for the sins of their parents and also in the contradictory decrees by King Ahasuerus in the Book of Esther; and the seventh contradiction in the relationship between God’s determinism and human freedom. At the same time, this article illustrates that Ibn Kaspi considers the first, third, and fourth contradictions to be only apparent contradictions, asserting that they merely appear as such to the reader. It is only the seventh type that is a true contradiction since, in Ibn Kaspi’s estimation, this was created by the biblical author with intent, in which one notion is intentionally false and the other intentionally true—thus revealing a dialectic of both freedom and determinism embedded in the biblical text.
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