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Date: Wed, 6 Dec 1995 22:30:17 -0800 (PST)
From: "David W. Suter" <dsuter@catadon.stmartin.edu>
To: STONE@vms.huji.ac.il
Subject: Re: Testament of Naphtali (fwd)
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I attempted to post the following message to orion only to have it
rejected as address unknown, so I'm sending it directly to you.  Perhaps
it will get through in that way.

David Suter

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Wed, 6 Dec 1995 22:14:18 -0800 (PST)
From: David W. Suter <dsuter@stmartin.edu>
To: orion@pluto.orion.huji.ac.il
Subject: Re: Testament of Naphtali

The connection to the 1 Enoch material is entirely possible.  The Greek
version of TNaph, I believe, has a reference to the Watchers or fallen
angels near a reference to a writing of Enoch.  1 Enoch 13:7 has Enoch go
to the waters of Dan to seek a vision related to the Watchers' petition,
and the verses following seem to locate the place of their imprisonment
in the area.  There seems to me to be real potential for some sort of
"mythical geography," perhaps with a connection between the Jordan and
the underworld.  George Nickelsburg should be consulted about the Enoch
connection to Dan and upper Galilee since he has dealt with it more
extensively than I have.

Another angle:  The gospel of Matthew locates the beginning of Jesus's
proclamation of repentence in Capernaum in 4:13, connecting it to the
territory of Aebulun and Naphtali, and then citing in vss. 15-16 Isaiah
8:23-9:1 (Heb.), which seems to connect the messianic oracle of ch. 9 to
Zebulun and Naphtali.  Is there any chance that the Isaiah passage
provides an exegetical context for TNaph (I'm at home and can't pursue the
idea any further at the moment).  In any case, the usage in Matthew
suggests that someone in the first century could attach some significance
to Naphtali.

David Suter
Saint Martin's College

On Wed, 6 Dec 1995 STONE@vms.huji.ac.il wrote:

> Dear Cynthia,
> I will forward your reply to orion.
> I wonder; are there any parallels?  Does the role of
> Hermon in the Enoch material relate? How conscious
> were people of the Naphtali dimension of the Upper
> Galillee? Why not lots of Benjamin literature? or
> Judah?
> Michael Stone