A Kingdom of Priests

Considers a range of texts—including the Book of Watchers, Book of Jubilees, legal documents from the Dead Sea scrolls, writings of Philo of Alexandria, and the Book of Revelation—to explore the tensions inherent in Second Temple Judaism's emphasis on ancestry as the primary criterion for inclusion among the chosen people of Israel.

A Kingdom of Priests
Ancestry and Merit in Ancient Judaism

Martha Himmelfarb

2006 | 280 pages | Cloth $65.00
Religion | History
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Table of Contents


1. Priest and Scribe: Ancestry and Professional Skill in the Book of the Watchers, the Wisdom of Ben Sira, and Aramaic Levi
2. Jubilees' Kingdom of Priests
3. Priesthood and Purity Laws: The Temple Scroll and the Damascus Document
4. Priesthood and Sectarianism: The Rule of the Community, the Damascus Document, and the Book of Revelation
5. Priesthood and Allegory: Philo and Alexandrian Judaism
6. "The Children of Abraham Your Friend": The End of Priesthood, the Rise of Christianity, and the Neutralization of Jewish Sectarianism