How do you reconcile: 1) Gen.23:2 with Joshua 14: 13 – 15 and 2) Gen.
14:14 with Judges 18:29?


I am having trouble finding the potential contradiction in the first two.
This may be because of the translation I have in front of me. I have Gen
23:2 “She died in Kiriath Arba (that is, Hebron) in the?” Joshua
14:13-15 “wholeheartedly (Hebronused to be called Kiriath Arba after
Arba, who was the greatest?.” There is no potential conflict, at least
in this translation.

On the second one, I can see how one might see a possible contradiction.
Genesis 14, presumably much earlier, has the location to which Abraham
pursued his family posessions called Dan, while Judges 18:29, presumably
describing much later events, has the same location Dan only receiving its
name, hundreds of years after Abraham lived, because the tribe of Dan
occupied that city. If you assume that Genesis was written by Moses or
even earlier, then there is a problem. I do not assume Genesis was
written by Moses. It is possible that he had some sort of influence on
this book, but as far as I know, there is no evidence for this.
Personally, I believe Genesis was put into its final form, probably in the
early kingdom period, from much earlier written? and/or oral materials.
It makes perfect sense that the Genesis compiler/editor used the common
name for this city, while the writer of Judges is giving us an accurate
account of how it got that name. Again, if you assume that Genesis was
written in its final form some time around 1400 BC, then there would be an
apparent contradiction. However, I do not believe this is the case.

John Oakes, PhD

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