The king as exemplar : the function of Deuteronomy's kingship law in the shaping of the Book of Psalms
This thesis suggests that Deuteronomy's Kingship Law (Deut 17: 14-20) may have functioned as the paradigm for the placement of kingship psalms alongside torah psalms at key junctures in the final form of the Psalter. It argues that there is a general background in deuteronomic theology found in the torah-kingship psalm groupings (Pss 1-2; 18-21 and 118-119) and that the theological emphases of these psalms reflect, more particularly, the theology of the Law of the King. This study adopts a canonical approach to the analysis of the Psalter. That is, it suggests that the ordering of the psalms within the book Z:. ZD reflects deliberate and systematic editorial activity, and that-by considering the positioning4_ ý of psalms within the final form of the Psalter-the reader may tentatively observe the theological concerns of the book's redactors. This study draws upon recent developments in psalms studies, where there has been a move over the last fifteen years towards canonical readings of the Psalms, and suggests further developments in this approach both in terms of method and exegetical understanding of the texts in question. It is the conclusion of this thesis that the juxtaposition of kingship and torah psalms may have been the result of deliberate editorial activity in order to reflect the theology of the Kingship Law in the Psalter. It is further proposed that the reasons for this redaction were: (1) to shape the psalmic view of the eschatological king, emphasising that the expected Davidic monarch should reflect the ideal, rather than the historical examples, of kingship; and, (2) to endorse and encourage a torah-based piety, reflected in the practices expected of the king in the Kingship Law, amongst the readers and hearers of the Psalms.