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Life, Book of

Encyclopedia of the Bible and its Reception

Volume 16
Editor(s): Christine Helmer, Steven L. McKenzie, Thomas Römer, Jens Schröter, Barry Dov Walfish, Eric J. Ziolkowski
De Gruyter (Berlin, Boston) 2018

New Testament

Franz Tóth

The Book of Life is a sub-type of the heavenly book motif in Jewish and Christian literature, which includes the book of deeds, the book of destiny, the book of action, and of course the Book of Life. The heavenly book is a form of writing stored in heaven that is restricted almost entirely to heavenly use. The Book of Life is the predominant subdivision of that motif (Baynes). The idea of a Book of Life is derived from the custom of the ancients of keeping genealogical records (Neh 7:5, 64; 12…

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