“Allusions to the Levitical Leprosy Laws in the Jericho Narratives (Joshua 2 and 6)” by NICHOLAS P. LUNN

“Allusions to the Levitical Leprosy Laws in the Jericho Narratives (Joshua 2 and 6)” by NICHOLAS P. LUNN

ABSTRACT: This article explores one particular case in which a narrative of the Old Testament historical books references laws within the legal code of Israel. The particular manner of intertextual relationship in question is that of allusion rather than direct citation. Following a discussion of how the Deuteromonic History was familiar with contents of the Priestly Code, it is here argued that in composing his account of the spying out of Jericho and its subsequent overthrow, the author of the book of Joshua was looking to the levitical laws regarding leprosy to help enhance his narrative in a meaningful way. All three categories of leprous infection (of a person, a house, and a garment) dealt with in the law have their counterparts in the historical account. When viewed against the backdrop of the Hebrews occupying a land inhabited by Canaanites, each of the three cases delivers an appropriate message to Israel.

KEYWORDS: leprosy, Jericho, Rahab, Deuteronomic History, Leviticus, Priestly Code, allusion, intertextuality

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