According to Weston W. Fields, biblical narrative is a didactic socio-religious commentary on human experience reflected in history, and that such history is a way of describing the conceptual universe of the ancient authors. Biblical narrative is strikingly free of abstract formulations but encapsulates abstract reflections within recurring literary motifs and by the reporting of historical information. This perception of biblical narrative is strikingly illustrated by an analysis of the story of Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 19). The motifs of the Sodom tradition are compared with those in the stories about the concubine in Gibeah (Judges 19) and about the destruction of Jericho (Joshua 2).
Weston W. Fields is the Executive Director of The Dead Sea Scrolls Foundation, Jerusalem.