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Qoheleth. A Continental Commentary.

Qoheleth. A Continental Commentary. By Norbert Lohfink (Fortress, $23). This commentary was first published in German more than twenty years ago, but references have been brought up to date in this English translation. L. wrote his commentary to explain the choices he made for a modern German Bible translation; hence its relative brevity (158 pages) and freedom from academic details. L. advocates a clear (and controversial) stance: Qoheleth (Ecclesiastes), written in the third century, was an attempt to profit as much as possible from the Greek understanding of the world, without forcing Israel's wisdom to give up its status. Qoheleth made it into the canon because it was one of the textbooks used in the temple school in Jerusalem and in the comparable synagogue schools. When Qoheleth was introduced as a textbook, the first postscript was added in 12:9-11. The second postscript in 12:12-14 was an attempt to block the creation of new textbooks and to defend the book's orthodoxy by attributing to Qoheleth a slogan--"Fear God and keep his commandments"--that is more at home in Sirach.
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Author:Klein, Ralph W.
Publication:Currents in Theology and Mission
Date:Aug 1, 2007
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