Die Chronik Als Kanonisches Abschlussphanomen: Studien Zur Entstehung Und Theologie Von 1/2 Chronik
Graham, M. Patrick, Journal of Biblical Literature
Die Chronik als kanonisches Abschlussphanomen: Studien zur Entstehung and Theologie von 1/2 Chronik, by Georg Steins. BBB 93. Beltz: Athenaum Verlag, 1995. Pp. 582. DM 118.00.
This revision of Stein's 1993 Munster dissertation (directed by Erich Zenger) is an impressive application of redaction criticism to Chronicles. The author was preceded in this effort to track the growth of Chronicles by several others (e.g., K. Galling, T. Willi, and H. G. M. Williamson; the recent work of E. M. Dorrfuss-as well as S. Japhet's commentary was not available to Steins), and in some respects his work parallels that of the Gottingenschule on the Deuteronomistic History in its attempt to identify the various redactional layers (Schichten) of the biblical text. In addition to his attempt at reconstructing a history of composition, Steins has been attentive to the influence of redactional activity on the formation of the canon, for which he has built especially on O. H. Steck's research on Deutero-Isaiah. In spite of these precedents, however, it must be acknowledged that Steins has produced a creative, coherent, and intriguing study of Chronicles that will surely provoke discussion and demand the attention of all who follow.
There are four chapters plus a massive bibliography and an index of Scripture citations (an index of modern authors would have been helpful). The first two chapters take up important introductory issues. Chapter 1 deals with the literary character of 1-2 Chronicles-its literary unity; Chronicles as interpretation; intertextuality; Chronicles as a targum, midrash, or "rewritten" Bible; the problem of Chronicles' sources; and the relation of Chronicles to Samuel-Kings. The second chapter is devoted primarily to the relation of Chronicles to Ezra-Nehemiah, and Steins concudes that the two derive from different authors.
The third chapter constitutes the body of the work and takes up successively several important blocks of material: 2 Chr 29-32 (Hezekiah); 34-35 (Josiah);1 Chr 11-29 (David); 2 Chr 1-9 (Solomon); and several other smaller units of text (1 Chr 9; 2 Chr 13:9-11; 20:14, 19, 21-22, 28; 26:16-21). Steins concludes that the Grundschicht of Chronicles dated from the Maccabean period and presumed the existence of a basic form of Ezra-Nehemiah (as well as most of the rest of the canon of the Hebrew Bible), and he detects three major redactions of the book. The first focused on cultic personnel, especially Levitical musicians and doorkeepers, and included 1 Chr 23-24; 26 deg; 2 Chr 8:14-15; 35:2, 6, 8-10, 14b, which themselves may be further divided into discrete redactional layers. The second major redactional effort concentrated on the role of the nation's leaders and the assembly in Israel's cultic life and is designated the "communal layer" (Gemeinde-Schicht). It included 1 Chr 28:12-19, 21a; 29:1-20, 21-22, 2 Chr 29:21a, 23-24, 31-4a, 35b; 30:Ib-5a, 13b, 15-17, 23-25; 35:17. …