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By Gary N. Knoppers, Kenneth Ristau

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2 However, the fact remains that we learn very little from the literature of the Hebrew Bible about the state of people in exile. 3 Author’s note: The research for this essay was undertaken during the period that I held the Izaak Walton Killam Memorial Postdoctoral Fellowship. I would like to acknowledge the Killam Trust for the financial support provided. 1. L. L. Grabbe, “Introduction,” in Leading Captivity Captive: “The Exile” as History and Ideology (JSOTSup 278; Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1998) 17.

When this circumstantial evidence is considered together with their nomadic lifestyle, one can see why it is so tempting to conclude that the Qenites were metalsmiths. There is also other evidence for this identification that is less well-known. It is common in simple societies for metalsmiths to live itinerate lives. 42 This is in part because they must travel to gather raw materials and then bring them back to customers and in part because they are among the very few who possess the requisite metallurgical skills.

The independent story of David and Goliath in 1 Sam 17 is a rather careless attempt at combining the destinies of Saul and David. Saul recruits conscripts from the sons of Jesse in Judah, and he is even presented as the king of Jerusalem (17:54). This presumably explains why the battle is fought in the strategic region west of Jerusalem and not in his own territory of Benjamin. book Page 31 Friday, May 1, 2009 9:08 AM David: Messianic King or Mercenary Ruler? 31 extent, the election of David and the founding of the temple by his son Solomon still forms a powerful focus for popular identity beyond the destruction of the state.

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