Trying Man, Trying God
The Divine Courtroom in Early Jewish & Christian Literature
Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament, 2. No. 289

By Meira Z. Kensky
October 2010
Mohr Siebeck
Distributed by Coronet Books Inc.

ISBN: 9783161504099
389 pages

$157.50 Paper original

Meira Z. Kensky examines scenes of the divine courtroom in Jewish and Christian literature from antiquity. Her central argument is that these courtroom scenes, though fanciful in nature and often remarkably entertaining, are part of a serious inquiry taking place throughout the Mediterranean as to the nature of divine justice.

These scenes can contain explicit criticism about the adequacy and equity of God’s justice, or can be used to attempt to vindicate God from charges of injustice and inequity. What is important is that this amounts to a rotation of the courtroom scene: the courtroom, rather than simply functioning on the narrative level with the reader as an additional spectator, is rotated so that the reader is in the judicial position, and it is the judge and the process itself which are being adjudicated. When man is tried, it is truly God who is on trial.

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