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Durham University

Department of Theology and Religion


Publication details for Dr David Janzen

Janzen, David (2015). 'What he did for me': David's Warning about Joab in 1 Kings 2.5. Journal for the Study of the Old Testament 39(3): 265-279.

Author(s) from Durham


This article argues that David orders Solomon in 1 Kgs 2.5–6 to kill Joab because of Joab's pattern of assassinating rivals in order to benefit his master. David's point in 2.5 is that Joab killed Abner and Amasa, two potential enemies of David, without warning, and since Joab supported Solomon's brother's claim to the throne, Solomon might be his next victim. The Septuagint and the Lucianic recension have altered the more difficult text that appears in the Masoretic text in order to make it seem as if Joab and harmed David, and so provide a legal and religious basis for David and Solomon's conspiracy to kill Joab not present in the original text.