The Story of Sukkot: The Setting, Shaping, and Sequel of the Biblical Feast of Tabernacles, Volume 8; Volume 34
Hakan Ulfgard traces the ideological development of the biblical Feast of Tabernacles ( sukkot ) from c. 600 BCE until c. 500 CE. He analyzes all biblical and para-biblical texts related to sukkot, taking into account also questions concerning calendars and the general politico-historical framework. This results in some specific conclusions on the relation between sukkot and the calendar, sukkot and the temple, sukkot and the Torah, and sukkot and history. In this way, sukkot functions as some kind of a 'peep-hole' into the ideological development of emerging Judaism, as reflected in the biblical and para-biblical writings.In the concluding section of the book the author illustrates the understanding of sukkot in post-biblical times, as witnessed by early Jewish and early Christian celebration and interpretation. The currently relevant eschatological interpretation of the latter is emphasized in particular. In texts from later Roman and early Byzantine times it is noted how rabbinic and patristic interpretation, each in its own way, defuses this understanding of the festival. In the first case, the festival is regarded as a main expression of true Judaism, with reward for the faithful celebrants in the future Age to Come. In Christian exegesis, the festival is reinterpreted as symbolizing the virtuous and renewed life of the holy inheritors of Israel's traditional beliefs and promises.
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