Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Theology (ThD)


Exegetical Theology

First Advisor

Horace Hummel

Scripture References in this Resource (separated by semi-colons)

Exodus 15:22-26; Amos 7:1-6; Deuteronomy 9:22-26; Exodus 14:30; Exodus 15:22-18:27; Exodus 16:1-12,28,29; Exodus 16:2,7,8; Exodus 16:6-12; Exodus 17:1-7; Exodus 32:11-14; Ezekiel 20:10-26; Genesis 18:22-33; Hosea 2:16-22; Isaiah 4:4; Jeremiah 2:2; Joshua 9:19; Numbers 11:10-14; Numbers 11:1-3; Numbers 11:18-23,31-34; Numbers 11:31-34; Numbers 11:4-35; Numbers 14:11-35; Numbers 14:2,27,29,36; Numbers 14:21-35; Numbers 14:26-45; Numbers 16:11; Numbers 17:20,25; Numbers 17:6,20; Numbers 20:1-13; Numbers 21:4-9; Psalm 105:37-45; Psalm 106:16-30; Psalm 78;


It is ultimately the inclusion of the of Yahweh’s love toward Israel in the wilderness, and the contrasting judgment in times that closely parallel the saving acts, which prompt this study. In Lutheran terms this is known as gospel and law theology. The covenant made at Sinai seemingly distinguishes the way Yahweh approaches his people, and separates the narratives. The pre-Sinai narratives accentuate the gracious acts of Yahweh and the post-Sinai narratives emphasize his judgment and punishment. Considering this difference, the question is asked whether the murmurings of the people are the focal point for studies, as the emphases of Noth, Coats, DeVries and Barth would suggest. Or, is there another emphasis that needs to be studied? The murmurings of the people are constant. They occur in the pre-Sinai and post-Sinai series of narratives. It is Yahweh's response to these murmurings that changes. Therefore this study will be more concerned with Yahweh’s mercy and judgment as he responds to the murmurings, and the somewhat parallel term "rebellion," in the wilderness period. Rather than categorically beginning with a thesis that Old Testament writers have differing concepts of the wilderness period, it seems more plausible to find the law and gospel emphases here just as this theology permeates the rest of Scripture. The goal is to determine that which unifies the interpretation of the period and thus draws Scripture together rather than dividing it by seeing Scripture as an accumulation of theological viewpoints collected into narratives, "all strung together by late compilers on an artificial chronological thread.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.