Study guide for OT520 Old Testament backgrounds exam
The aim of this exam is to test the student’s “background” study of the Old Testament. It is intended to be an objective examination covering definitions, dates and chronology, and locations. The material covered is found in this study guide and the materials from the Oxford Annotated Bible (OAB) and Oxford Biblical Studies (OBS) online materials as indicated here. The exam will be
a closed-book exam (please do not succumb to the temptation to cheat; you are training for ministry!). The format will include multiple-choice, matching, and map identification based on your study of the Oxford Annotated Bible essays, glossary, and maps (and the OBS pages noted below, available through the B. L. Fisher web page).
Definitions (see referenced essays and glossary, OAB pp. 2269–2311)
Stratigraphy – the analysis of the sequence of layers, or strata, of a tell, or mound, at an
Archaeological site formed by successive periods of human occupation (from OBS)
Go’el/kinsman/redeemer – a technical term for one who had certain rights and obligations: to
restore the property which an impoverished relative had lost (Lev.25:25; see Ruth 4:3–4) and to marry the widow of a relative without male offspring (Ruth 1:11–13; 4:5–6; Deut 25:5–10). It is also the term for a blood avenger (Num 35:12) (from OBS).
Hittite suzerainty treaties – Late Bronze Age treaties to which scholars have compared the form
of the covenant made by Moses between God and Israel (from OBS s.v. “Decalogue”)
The “Catastrophe” – the collapse of the Late Bronze age city state political and economic system
(see timeline in OAB p. 2255)
Holy of holies/holiest place/inner sanctum – designation of the innermost chamber of the
Jerusalem Temple's interior space where the Ark of the Covenant was kept, and where the invisible presence and glory of Yahweh was located behind a veil which was penetrated only on the Day of Atonement by the High Priest (from...