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Extra Biblical Parallels l Continuities with the Mari Prophets –Oracles against a foe and in favor of the king –Concern for justice (relatively rare at.

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Presentation on theme: "Extra Biblical Parallels l Continuities with the Mari Prophets –Oracles against a foe and in favor of the king –Concern for justice (relatively rare at."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Extra Biblical Parallels l Continuities with the Mari Prophets –Oracles against a foe and in favor of the king –Concern for justice (relatively rare at Mari) –Dreams played an important role –Messenger is called or sent –Boldness of the prophet toward the king –The god Adad bases his demands on his gracious acts of kindness to the king

3 Differences in Mari from Biblical Prophets l Issues primarily cultic (but Haggai, Gad, and Nathan dealt with cult) and of local significance l Prophets in Israel to whole nation and not just king (but Nathan, Gad, Ahijah) l Biblical prophets created written tradition-- Mari prophets mentioned only in royal correspondence. l Promises conditional upon royal grants

4 Other Extra Biblical Parallels ecstatic l Wen Amon--An ecstatic tells the king of Byblos to listen to Wen Amon and to the god Amon 11 c l “prophets” of Baal and Asherah at time of Ahab and Jezebel 9c l Oracles of salvation to king Zakir: “I will stand by you and deliver you” 8c l Oracles to Esarhaddon and Ashurbanipal from the deities Assur or Ishtar; primarily reassuring, some critical 7c

5 Titles for Prophets Seer hzx Reports and sees visions l Diviner har Cf. Samuel (able to communicate with sacred world) l Man of God – Holy Man (dangerous, powerful, deserves respect; e.g. Elisha) l Prophet aybn. Some, but not all, prophets were priests. Etymologically = “a person called”

6 “Prophet” l Amos?; Hosea: The prophet is a fool (9:7); Isaiah (his wife is prophetess); with Jeremiah and later the term prophet is common l They make and break kings; agents of Holy War; oppose idolatry; criticize social injustice l Female prophets: Miriam, Deborah, Huldah, Ms. Isaiah, Noadiah (post-exile)

7 Prophets in Israel Before the Eighth Century –Pre Entry into the land: Abraham, Aaron, Balaam, Eldad and Medad, Moses –Pre Monarchical period: Deborah, Samuel--the Samuel compromise: a. war fought by king; b. authorization by prophet –Monarchical period: Gad, Nathan, Ahijah, Shemaiah, Man of God 10c –Elijah, Elisha, Micaiah 9c

8 Prophets in Israel Eighth Century and Later –Amos, Hosea, Isaiah, Micah 8c –Huldah, Hananiah, Jeremiah, Zephaniah, Nahum, Habakkuk 7c –Ezekiel, Obadiah, Second Isaiah and Third Isaiah, Haggai, Zechariah 6c –Malachi, Noadiah 5c; Joel, Jonah 4c

9 Major Prophetic Genres l Accounts: 3rd person narratives (Hosea 1; Jer 26-28; 36-45; Elijah, Elisha) or 1st person narratives (Jer 13 [symbolic actions], 24 [baskets of figs], 32 [buys cousin’s land]; Hosea 3) l Prayers (Laments--Jeremiah’s confessions; hymns--Amos 4:13; 5:8; 9:5-6)

10 Prophetic Genres Continued l Speeches –Reasons for judgment (prophet’s own words); announcement of judgment (oracle of Yahweh) –messenger formula: Thus says Yahweh –Trial speeches vs gods or nations (Second Isaiah) –Woe oracles (Amos) –Oracles against the nations (Amos, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel) –Oracles of salvation (Second Isaiah)

11 Prophetic judgment speech l Hear this, you rulers of the house of Jacob…who abhor justice and pervert all equity, who build Zion with blood. They lean on Yahweh and say: Surely the LORD is with us. (= reasons for judgment) Therefore !kl, because of you, Zion shall be plowed as a field; Jerusalem shall become a heap of ruins (announcement of judgment) (Micah 3:9-12)

12 The words of Amos who was among the shepherds of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of King Uzziah of Judah and in the days of King Jeroboam son of Joash of Israel, two years before the earthquake.

13 The Prophet Amos l From Tekoa, south of Bethlehem “Shepherd” dqn Herdsman/cattle breeder rqb l Dresser of sycamore figs (several crops in a summer) l Two years before the earthquake--760 A seer? hzx A prophet? aybn

14 The Form of the Visions l This is what Lord Yahweh showed me l Behold l I said, Lord Yahweh, forgive/stop –Yahweh relents (visions 1-2) l What happens to the prophet’s speech in visions 3 and 4? l What happens to the whole form in vision 5?

15 Thought Progression in Visions l Locusts after king’s mowing 7:1-3 l Rain of fire 7:4-6 l Plumb line? Tin (for bronze)? 7:7-9 [Followed by Amos-Amaziah incident in 7:10-17] Qayis #yq (summer fruit)/Qes #q (end) 8:1- 2 l Judgment on Bethel 9:1-4 (followed by hymn 9:5-6 [doxology of judgment])

16 Amos 1-2 Oracles against the Nations l Damascus l Gaza l Tyre l Edom l Ammonites l Moab l Judah (deuteronomistic?) l Israel (7 + 1)

17 Outline of Oracles against Foreign Nations 1:3-2:16 l A. Messenger Formula: Thus says Yahweh l B. For 3 rebellions and for 4…I will not turn it back because… (indictment) –Expanded indictment with normative expression (Tyre, Edom, Judah) l C. Announcement of judgment –Additional announcement of judgments (not in Tyre, Edom, Judah) l D. Concluding Messenger Formula (not in Tyre, Edom, Judah) says Yahweh l Note how form explodes in Israel oracle

18 Amos 2:4-5 l Thus says the LORD: For three rebellions of Judah, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; because they have rejected the law of Yahweh, and have not kept his statutes, but they have been led astray by the same lies after which their ancestors walked. l So I will send a fire on Judah, and it shall devour the strongholds of Jerusalem.

19 Crimes in Oracles against Foreign Nations l In Nations –cruelty in war (1:3, 11, 13 [ripped open pregnant women]) –slavery issues (stealing people for slave trade 1:5, 9; ) –violation of the dead (2:1 burned to lime the bones of the king of Edom) l In Israel –The crimes are committed against their own citizens: injustice in court, violation of pledges, sexual sins? exploitation and enslavement of poor

20 Amos 2:6-8 l Thus says the LORD: For three transgressions of Israel, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment; because they sell the righteous for silver, and the needy for a pair of sandals (or: for hidden gain)-- l they who trample the head of the poor into the dust of the earth, and push the afflicted out of the way; father and son go in to the same girl, so that my holy name is profaned; they lay themselves down beside every altar on garments taken in pledge; and in the house of their God they drink wine bought with fines they imposed.

21 Amos 2:8 Exod 22:26 Deut 24:17 Yabneh.jpg

22 The Yavneh Yam Ostracon l Hoshayahu came and took your servant’s garment. All my companions will vouch for me…that truly I am guiltless of any infraction. l Please return my garment. If the official does not consider it an obligation to return your servant’s garment, then have pity on him and return your servant’s garment from that motivation. You must not remain silent when your servant is without his garment.

23 Madaba Map 6 th c. CE

24 Madaba Map 6 th c CE Spent will be the “sprawlers’ spree” ~yxwrs xzrm (Am 6:7) Betomarsea (House of the Marzeah or Maioumas) Site of Baal Peor (Num 25:1-9)

25 The Inevitability of Judgment--Chapter 3 (III. C. 1) l Vv 3-5 Event followed by its cause l V 6a Cause followed by event--trumpet/fear l v 6b Event followed by its cause l v 7 Yahweh’s deeds preceded by revelation to his servants the prophets l v 8 Causes followed by events: –Lion--fear –Word of Yahweh--compulsion to prophesy

26 Amos 5:1-3--An Elegy (theme of death) l vv. 1-2 Prophet: Maiden Israel is fallen –genre for an individual applied to nation –fallen? In battle? –Hopelessness of the situation--listeners treated as dead people l v. 3 Yahweh: City will have 90% casualties

27 Amos 5:4-6 (theme of life) l vv. 4-5 Yahweh: Seek me, directly or through prophet, and live; life, not death l Do not seek Bethel or Gilgal or Beersheba –Bethel: house of God becomes house of nothingness; royal sanctuary la tyb or !wa { [ tyb\ ] 5bβ –Gilgal = home of the traditions about the conquest or Saul; hlgy hlg lglgh 5bα –Beersheba--Isaac (cf. 7:16; 8:14) l v. 6 Prophet: Coming judgment is conditional. Seek Yahweh and live

28 Amos 5:7-13 (injustice- hymn-injustice) l v. 7 Complaint: justice and righteousness are turned on their head l vv. 8-9 Doxology of judgment: Praise of God who brings both death and life. l vv Complaint about injustice (they hate the person who offers reproof in the gate) and oppression; followed by frustration oracle--build houses and not live in them. The “gate” is the place where justice should reign

29 Amos 5:14-15 (theme of life) l v. 14 seek good (the moral life)--then the God of the heavenly armies will be with you l v. 15 Hate evil (i.e. do not hate the one who reproves in the gate) l “Perhaps”--it all depends on the sovereign freedom of the God of the heavenly armies— Yahweh will be gracious to the remnant of Joseph

30 The Remnant l 5:15 Only the “remnant” of Joseph will be saved--and it only “perhaps” l 2:14-16 no one escapes--not even the strong l 3:12 “remnant” (two legs or piece of an ear)= proof of destruction l 5:18-20 people flee to their death on day of Yahweh

31 Amos 5: Mourning (theme of death) l Announcement of judgment via an oracle of Yahweh. Thus says Yahweh: In all the squares there will be wailing l Vineyards, usually places of joy, will be places for wailing

32 Turning the old traditions on their head l 5:18-20 The Day of Yahweh will be darkness not light (III. E.) l 3:1-2 Election; therefore, I will punish you (III. I.) l 9:7 Everybody’s had an Exodus--Philistines and Syrians, too

33 Amos and the Sacrificial System (III. F.) l Come to Bethel (Jacob) and transgress, to Gilgal (conquest) and multiply transgression (4:4a) l Bring a thankoffering and freewill offerings for so you love to do (4:4b-5) l Seek me; do not seek Bethel, enter Gilgal, or cross over to Beer-sheba (5:4-5) l I hate, I despise your festivals….But let justice roll down like waters (5:24)

34 Sacrificial System (continued) l Did you bring me sacrifices…the forty years in the wilderness [when faith was not overwhelmed by the cult of Baal]? Genuine fellowship with God desired as in the wilderness (5:25) l You shall carry off Sakkuth (Sikkuth) and Kaiwan (Kiyyun)…into exile! (5:26-27) beyond Damascus (2 Kgs 14:28). Now beyond Damascus is not in victory but in exile

35 Refusal to return 4:6-13 l Famine, no rain, blight and mildew, pestilence, destruction as at Sodom and Gomorrah (destruction of Jerusalem?) l yet you did not return to me (6, 8, 9, 10, 11) l Therefore, thus I am about to do to you l Prepare to meet your God, O Israel: All former judgments ineffectual, Israel must now confront God in person.

36 Jeremias’ Reconstruction l Original book: Five oracles against the foreign nations (1-2) and five vision reports (7-9) provide a framework for 3-6 l 3:1 vs. the people of God; 5:1 vs. the state; 5:1-17 organized in a concentric pattern l Woe/lament for the dead 5:18-27 and 6:1-14 l Accusations against upper classes in Samaria (3:9- 4:3; 6:1-14)

37 Growth of Amos according to Jeremias l Subsequent redactions— l Josianic—Israel listens more to the state than to the prophetic word l Deuteronomistic material—guilt juxtaposed with saving acts of God 2:10; 3:1b; prophetic word can be lost 8:11-12 (famine for hearing the word of Yahweh) l Postexilic 9:7-15 (ties to Joel and Obadiah); hymns: 1:2; 4:13; 5:8-9; 9:5-6 l Ch 5: original 2-3; 4-5; 7, 11-12, 16-17; later 5ab, 6, 8-9, 13

38 Jeremias l Life of luxury derives from violence against the weak 3:9-4:3; 6:1-11 l Justice perverted by bribery 5:7, 10-12, , 24; 6:12 l Misguided trust in pilgrimages and elaborate worship services 4:4-5; 5:4-5,

39 Jeremias’ Links l Oracles vs nations and visions: 8:4-7; 2:6-7 (selling the need for a pair of sandals) l 4:4 (Bethel) and 8:14 (Dan) echoed in Hos 4:15 (Gilgal, Beth-aven) l Hos 8:14 (I will send a fire upon its cities) sounds like judgment in oracles vs. nations in Amos l Dependence on Hosea in Amos 2:6-8; 3:2 (Hos 2:21); 5:25 (Hos 2:14-15; 8:11-13; 9:10; 10:1-2); 6:8 (Hos 5:5; 7:10; 12:7-8; 13:6); 7:9 (Hos 4:4ff)

40 Jeremias and the XII l 1 st edition of Hosea predates that of Amos; hence placed first l Multiple links between Amos and Hosea show that Minor Prophets never thought of solely as separate books

41 The Word “Prophet” l Individuals anachronistically Abraham, Moses, Miriam, Aaron, Deborah l Ecstatics (Eldad and Medad; Saul in 1 Samuel 10 and 19) l Court officials (Gad, Nathan, 400 with Ahab) l “Sons of prophets”--Elisha = guild l Other terms: “man of God”; seer (hozeh and ro’eh)


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