I was very pleased to see this morning that my proposal to the newly approved Early Jewish Monotheisms unit has been accepted. Here is the program as it looks at this point:
Key Terms in the Debate about Monotheism
Joel Burnett (Baylor University): What is an elohim? Reflections on Chronicles’ Use of the Term
Larry Hurtado (Edinburgh University): What comprises ‘Jewish Monotheism’ in the late Hellenistic and early Roman Period?
Daniel O. McClellan (Oxford University): What is Deity in LXX Deuteronomy?
Mike Hundley (Cambridge University): What is divine presence?
Rob Barrett (Göttingen University): What Does it Mean to Follow Other Gods?
Here is my abstract:
What Is Deity in LXX Deuteronomy?
The book of Deuteronomy provides a number of valuable and unique insights into early Israelite perspectives on the nature of God, his relationship to other divine beings, and the diachronic development of both. For example, Deut 32:8–9, as found in 4QDeutj, attests to a likely early distinction between Yahweh and Elyon and presents the latter as the overseer of the gods of the several nations of the earth. Deut 4:19 represents a later recasting of the relationship of Elyon (now identified with Yahweh) with those deities (now represented astrally). Multiple historical layers and theologies are represented.
The Greek translation of Deuteronomy, however, redefines and harmonizes the nature of God and his relationship to the deities of the surrounding nations. Whether as the result of dynamic equivalence, translator exegesis, or a variant Vorlage, the perspective offered is one of the earliest of developing Hellenistic-Jewish monotheism. The unique nature of Deuteronomy’s references to other deities provides a rich backdrop against which to read the Greek translation. This paper will examine the view of divinity presented in LXX Deuteronomy and evaluate its relationship to that of the Hebrew text as it has been preserved to us.