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In Case You Missed It -- 2 Chronicles 7, Psalm 57

In the 19th & 20th centuries, non-believing academics, or even those with secular, miracle-denying worldviews, rejected God’s authorship of the scriptures. Accordingly, they hypothesized various possible sources from which we might have derived the Pentateuch (first five books of the Bible) and the theology of later Old Testament scriptures. One famous theory suggested that much of the Pentateuch had four different sources of authorship. To be brief, one of these four was called “Deuteronomistic,” supposed to have been responsible for any teaching that included Israel's receipt of blessings for obedience or curses for disobedience.

Certainly the theology of 2 Chronicles 7:11-22 would be considered full of “deuteronomistic theology,” developed by people in Josiah’s day to rationalize Israel’s experiences in exile. The problem is, when we approach the scriptures with suspicion, we have to come up with theories that inadequately explain the nuanced stories, not to mention theological teachings, found therein. A straightforward and receptive reading makes better sense of the parts. I do not see any reason to believe that Israel would invent a collection of stories that cast them in such horrible light, as people who have been consistently given great promises for obedience only to choose the curses of God. I rather think it much more likely that these stories are the truth about God’s historical dealings with Israel, and today’s reading is simply God reiterating his covenant promises to Solomon. My prayer is that you will also, with spiritual eyes, see that God is the author of the story we are reading daily.

Jeremiah Vaught