By Paul Borgman
The biblical tale of King David and his clash with King Saul (1 and a pair of Samuel) is without doubt one of the so much colourful and perennially well known within the Hebrew Bible. in recent times, this tale has attracted loads of scholarly realization, a lot of it dedicated to displaying that David used to be a miles much less heroic personality than seems to be at the floor. certainly, multiple has painted David as a despicable tyrant. Paul Borgman presents a counter-reading to those experiences, via an attentive examining of the narrative styles of the textual content. He makes a speciality of one of many key beneficial properties of historical Hebrew narrative poetics -- repeated styles -- taking specified notice of even the small diversifications every time a trend recurs. He argues that such "hearing cues" could have alerted an historic viewers to the solutions to such questions as "Who is David?" and "What is so unsuitable with Saul?" The narrative insists on such questions, says Borgman, slowly disclosing solutions via styles of repeated eventualities and dominant motifs that yield, ultimately, the very best paintings of storytelling in old literature. Borgman concludes with a comparability with Homer's storytelling procedure, demontrating that the David tale is certainly a masterpiece and David (as Baruch Halpern has stated) "the first really glossy human."
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Additional resources for David, Saul, and God: Rediscovering an Ancient Story
Pattern Two: Twice Saul Does Wrong, Responds Poorly 1st Wrongdoing (I, 9:11–10:9; 13:3–15) Injunction 35 Wrongdoing Confrontation Samuel, man of God, to Saul: Go to Gilgal and wait 7 days: I will come to sacriﬁce . . 7th day (not yet 8th): Saul sacriﬁces (Samuel not there). ’’ Samuel asks. ‘‘You have done foolishly. . ’’ Saul’s response ‘‘I saw that the people were slipping away from me . .. ’’ Consequences Samuel: ‘‘Your kingdom will not continue; the Lord has sought out a man after his own heart .
The episode ends without a single word or action from David. We have met David, but not really: we know nothing about him except that God likes him—for good reason, apparently, but reason known only to God (I, 16:7). The mystery of God and David are linked: how God thinks and feels will become most clear when we are most certain about the man who delights the divine heart—which happens by the end of the story. Introduction 2: David, Quiescent Musician Known and Loved by Saul (I, 16:14–23) David’s second entrance onto the narrative stage, after the disguised anointing by Samuel, brings the king-to-be into the court of the king he is to replace.
I, 15:17) Saul, we have been told, is anything but literally small: this head of the tribes stands ‘‘head and shoulders’’ above his compatriots. 30 Saul’s escalating frenzy of fear and increasingly unstable leadership unfold in his troubled reign ahead, conﬁrming that which the narrator has provided from the very ﬁrst meeting with Saul where we see a future king whose hesitancy is answered by a conﬁdent and can-do servant. This brief episode, the boy as foil to the man, functions in the same way as a longer episode with which we close, a moral tale in which Saul’s son serves as foil to his father.