By Andrew Mein
Mein goals to set Ezekiel's ethics firmly within the social and old context of the Babylonian Exile. Ezekiel's ethical issues and priorities, Mein indicates, are considerably formed through the social adventure of deportation and resettlement. in addition they symbolize an artistic reaction to the hindrance, offering major impetus for social team spirit and the upkeep of a distinctively Jewish group.
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Extra resources for Ezekiel and the Ethics of Exile (Oxford Theological Monographs)
Were 34 W. McKane, Prophets and Wise Men (London, 1965); P. D. Hanson, The Dawn of Apocalyptic: The Historical and Sociological Roots of Jewish Apocalyptic Eschatology, 2nd edn. , 1979). 35 P. Dutcher-Walls, ‘The Social Location of the Deuteronomists: A Sociological Study of Factional Politics in Late Pre-Exilic Judah’, JSOT 52 (1991), 80; I shall return to her work below, in Chapter 3. Moral Worlds 19 the principles by which real Israelites actually lived quite so closely determined by religious faith?
He will take your menservants and maidservants, and the best of your cattle and your asses and put them to his work. 46 While it is diﬃcult to assess the systems of ownership and taxation, it does appear that the State and its functionaries were the prime beneﬁciaries of any economic surplus. In ancient Israel, as in the rest of the ancient Near East, the powers of state were concentrated in the hands of the king. Lenski begins his general analysis of ancient societies of this type at the top of the social ladder, where we ﬁnd the ruler (almost a class in himself) and the governing classes.
Agrarian societies are also marked by the growth of small urban communities, in which most of the power, inﬂuence, and aﬄuence are concentrated. As the power of the State increases, the relations between State and religion become closer, reﬂecting the rulers’ need for legitimacy. 42 Lenski’s model is drawn from a wide range of diﬀerent societies, so we should not expect it to apply in every detail to the one society in which we are interested. 43 The most signiﬁcant work on social stratiﬁcation in ancient Israel has been that of Norman Gottwald, who draws inspiration from the work of Marx.
Ezekiel and the Ethics of Exile (Oxford Theological Monographs) by Andrew Mein