Bernard S. Jackson

in Wisdom-Laws

Published in print March 2006 | ISBN: 9780198269311
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191683596 | DOI:

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This chapter discusses the principal rules on homicide in the Covenant Code in Exodus. It identifies three distinct stages in the development of the law of homicide in biblical times and arrives at an initial hypothesis for dating these stages. Of course, this account does not suggest that one ‘stage’ gives way fully and immediately to its successor; rather, features of earlier periods persist later, particularly where not incompatible with the later development. Thus, blood vengeance does not disappear. Rather, increasing attempts are made to bring it under institutional control. Conversely, what later appears in normative sources may be anticipated earlier in non-normative sources: disquiet about kofer may antedate the priestly writers. The main area of contention is in relation to the cities of refuge. This chapter looks at the mental state in homicide, sanctions for homicide, asylum as a form of protection for certain classes of homicide, the views of rabbis on homicide and pure accident, and adjudication.

Keywords: rules; homicide; Covenant Code; law; kofer; sanctions; asylum; rabbis; adjudication

Chapter.  32746 words. 

Subjects: Biblical Studies

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