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The age of Prophecy Approximately 750-550 BCE. The Law, Books of Moses, Pentateuch (Torah) Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy The prophets.

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Presentation on theme: "The age of Prophecy Approximately 750-550 BCE. The Law, Books of Moses, Pentateuch (Torah) Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy The prophets."— Presentation transcript:

1 The age of Prophecy Approximately 750-550 BCE

2 The Law, Books of Moses, Pentateuch (Torah) Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy The prophets (Nevi’im) The former prophets: Joshua, Judges, 1&2 Samuel, 1&2 Kings The latter prophets: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, The scroll of the twelve (Amos, Hosea, Micah, Joel, Obadiah, Jonah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi) The Writings (Kethuvim) (written after exile) Psalms, Job, Proverbs Ruth, Song of Songs (Song of Solomon), Ecclesiastes, Lamentations, Esther Daniel, Ezra-Nehemiah, 1-2 Chronicles

3 PentateuchHistorical BooksPoetry and Wisdom Prophetic Books Genesis Exodus Leviticus Numbers Deuteronomy *Yellow text are books in the Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox Old Testament Joshua Judges Ruth 1 Samuel 2 Samuel 1 Kings 2 Kings 1 Chronicles 2 Chronicles Ezra Nehemiah Tobias Judith Esther 1 Macabees 2 Macabees Job Psalms Proverbs Ecclesiastes Song of Solomon Wisdom of Solomon Sirach Isaiah Jeremiah Lamentations Baruch Ezekiel Daniel (additions) Hosea Joel Amos Obadiah Jonah Micah Nahum Habakkuk Zephaniah Haggai Zechariah Malachi

4 Prophet in Hebrew = navi (pl nevi’im) “One who is called” or “one who announces” The prophet is a link between the people and god. This is a strong contrast to Canaanite practice of seeking help from mediums who call up the dead. Their responsibility is to know and announce God’s will in the immediate situation in a way that the original audience can understand and respond to. Their job is to bring people back to obedience to the Torah, and if that doesn’t work, to declare the punishment for their disobedience. There were some women prophets too (Miriam, Deborah, Huldah, Noahdiah).

5 BCEKingsProphets 1050Saul: (he starts great, but is rejected by God) Son, Jonathan, is David’s friend, daughter Michal becomes David’s wife. Samuel 1010David: The greatest king of Israel. Wins the most territory. “A man after God’s own heart.” Wrote many of the Psalms. Sinned but repented. Nathan 970Solomon: Completed the temple. Peaceful kingdom. Known for wealth and wisdom.

6 Kings of Israel (north) and Judah (South) after Solomon

7 God is righteous and demands that his people worship him exclusively. Unlike other ancient god’s, he is jealous. No idols. He cannot be expressed through material images and those who try become guilty of idolatry. Demands for social justice. Israel’s god is a champion of the poor, powerless, and vulnerable. Prophets are baffled and outraged at the extent of people’s disobedience. Pre-exilic prophets emphasize doom, while later ones offer comfort and hope. Restoration.

8 Isaiah: naked except for a loin cloth paraded through Jerusalem to illustrate the city’s imminent humiliation and ruin. Jeremiah: wore a yoke of wood, then a yoke of iron to symbolize the coming Babylonian oppression. Ezekiel: Cooked food over human excrement to symbolize the unclean food the people will be forced to eat in exile. And he lay tied up and mute for 190 days on one side & for 40 days on the other to symbolize the number of years Israel and Judah would be in exile. Such dramatic displays forced people to pay attention, and they still present strong images that demand our attention.

9 Poetry & narrative Much of the prophetic literature is written as poetry –Does this mean that’s the way the prophets spoke? –Or is it because that’s the way it was recorded? No one knows for sure. Continues with the same kinds of parallelism –(synonymous/same, antithetic/opposite, synthetic/cause & effect) Much simile and metaphor and allegory How is it presented in your Bible version? –In the King James Version (KJV), and many others, the poetry is written as prose; not laid out in lines as poetry. This makes the reading more difficult. –In later versions, poetry is written in lines that more easily expose the parallelism. Also there are spaces between oracles.

10 Prophetic writing is frequently incoherent. In other words, it’s easy to get lost and often impossible to link one section to the next. Much of the prophetic books are random collections of individual pronouncements called oracles. Prophets are typically shown to be looking around them and observing wrongdoing, then speaking out about it. Five Kinds of oracles 1.Oracles denouncing bad religion (especially idolatry and superficial worship) (revealing and showing how God hates it) 2.Oracles denouncing social injustice (taking advantage of the poor, dishonest weights and measures, bribes) 3.Oracles calling for repentance 4.Oracles announcing destruction 5.Oracles promising restoration

11 The prophets responded to urgent political or ethical crises that troubled their people. These writings are placed after the Deuteronomic history. Provide reasons for God rejecting his covenant people. Time period: Centered on three main events –Assyrian Crisis (750-700 BCE) (722 Israel’s defeat by Assyria) –Babylonian Crisis (612 Assyria conquered by Babylon) (587 Judah’s defeat by Babylon) –Post-exile readjustment. Persia defeats Babylon 520 Cyrus (Persian) allows remnant to return)

12 BCEKings of JudahKings of IsraelProphets 1. Rehoboam1. Jeroboam 900 2. Abijah2. Nadab 3. Asa 3. Baasha 4. Elah 5. Zimri 4. Jehoshaphat 6. Omri 7. Ahab (the worst) (marries Jezabel) (Elijah Israel ) 850 5. Jehoram8. Ahaziah (Elisha Israel ) 6. Ahaziah9. Joram Joel Judah (maybe) 7. Queen Athaliah Jonah (to Nineveh) (approx) 800 8. Joash10. Jehu (OK, but still not great) Amos Israel, 11. Jehoahaz Hosea Israel 9. Amaziah12. Jehoash Isaiah Judah (until Hezekiah) 10. Uzziah (Azariah) 13. Jeroboam II 750 11. Jotham 14. Zechariah Micah Judah (until Hezekiah) 12. Ahaz15. Shallum, 16. Menahem 17. Pekahiah, 18. Pekah, 19. Hoshea 725 13. HEZEKIAH (Best)722 fall of Samaria to the Assyrians 14. ManassehNahum (to Nineveh) (approx) 650 15. Amon Jeremiah Zephaniah, (exile) 16. JOSIAH (Best) 17. JehoahazHabakkuk (approx) 600 18. Jehoiakim Ezekiel, Daniel 19. JehoiachinObadiah (to Edom) 20. ZedekiahHaggai, Zechariah 587 Fall of Jerusalem to Babylonians Malachi Kings of Israel (north) and Judah (South) after Solomon (See 1&2 Kings)

13 (Baghdad)

14 Nebuchadnezzar – Babylonian King who finally conquered Judah and destroyed Jerusalem Cyrus – King of Persia who conquered Babylon and let Hebrews return home Darius I (522-486): Temple rebuilt Xerxes I (486-465): Persian king in Esther (also called Ahasuerus) Artaxerxes I (465-424) Xerxes II (423): Nehemiah returns to Jerusalem Darius II (423-404) Artaxerxes II (404-335): Ezra’s reforms. Final edition of Torah Alexander the Great of Macedonia (336-323): conquers Persia, Egypt, Mesopotamia, western India; begins Hellenistic period. Persian Period (almost 200 years)

15 Isaiah: If the nation repents, it can still be saved Jeremiah: It’s too late. Accept your captivity. Eventually, it will end. Ezekiel: Individuals have their own relationship with God.

16 Also called “First Isaiah” A historical person. Counselor to three kings (Jotham, Ahaz, Hezekiah) Assyria threatens to engulf tiny Judah. Advises Davidic kings to rely exclusively on Yahweh for deliverance 36-39 is a prose narrative describing Assyria’s failure The quality of Judah’s future depends upon the ruling classes’ willingness to show compassion and practice social justice –If your are willing to obey, You shall eat the good of the earth. But if you persist in rebellion, The sword will eat you instead. (1:19-20) –God is willing to forgive, “though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow” (1:18)

17 Jeremiah’s message through all of this was that Babylon’s victory couldn’t be avoided since it was Yahweh’s judgment and that the people should submit to it. Suffered as a traitor Prepare for exile and pray for your captors 597-first deportation from Judah to Babylon (Ezekiel goes with them) 587-burning of temple and city and second deportation 582-third deportation

18 Jeremiah 27:8-10 8 But if any nation or kingdom will not serve this king, Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, and put its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, then I will punish that nation with the sword, with famine, and with pestilence, says the Lord, until I have completed its * destruction by his hand. 9 You, therefore, must not listen to your prophets, your diviners, your dreamers, * your soothsayers, or your sorcerers, who are saying to you, ‘You shall not serve the king of Babylon.’ 10 For they are prophesying a lie to you, with the result that you will be removed far from your land; I will drive you out, and you will perish. 11 But any nation that will bring its neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon and serve him, I will leave on its own land, says the Lord, to till it and live there.

19 Younger than Jeremiah. Went to Babylon with first exiles Bizarre and compelling images A message of judgment and doom on Jerusalem and the temple. Focuses on individual responsibility. This is a break from Mosaic tradition where children are punished for the sins of their parents. 1-24. Call of Ezekiel and judgment 25-33. Judgment against foreign nations 34-48. Israel’s rebirth

20 Intro 1 Ezekiel connected dem dry bones, Ezekiel in the Valley of Dry Bones, Now hear the word of the Lord. Toe bone connected to the foot bone Foot bone connected to the heel bone Heel bone connected to the ankle bone Ankle bone connected to the leg bone Leg bone connected to the knee bone Knee bone connected to the thigh bone Thigh bone connected to the hip bone Hip bone connected to the back bone Back bone connected to the shoulder bone Shoulder bone connected to the neck bone Neck bone connected to the head bone Now hear the word of the Lord. Chorus Dem bones, dem bones gonna walk around. Now hear the word of the Lord. Notice: –“Now hear the word of the Lord” is a signal that this is an oracle from God. –This song can be a fun children’s song –This song also represents the hope of new life coming out of death.

21 An anonymous prophet speaks to Judean captives in Babylon. Often called Deutero-Isaiah The time of judgment is past Cyrus of Persia is praised for saving them from Babylon. God will lead them in a new and glorious exodus back to their homeland. Israel is Yahweh’s servant, God’s way to bring His light to the Gentiles. Focus on Comforting –Comfort, O comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that she has served her term, that her penalty is paid, that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for her sins. (Isaiah 40: 1-2)

22  Oracles oriented toward impoverished colony of exiles resettled in Judah which is now under Persian rule  Offers further comfort of better times ahead  God is not limited to the temple. Not focused on rebuilding Israel’s physical glory as a nation  66:1 What house could you build for me, what place could you make for my rest?”  The exodus from Assyria back to Israel is not as wonderful as second Isaiah foretold, so there is something still to come.

23 1.Authoritative even after the original events –Helps make sense of why the events happened. –Helps to understand God. What does he really want? –Helps understand the nature of the relationship between God and man. 2.The prophecies often did NOT come true… yet. –There are foretellings that had not yet been satisfied. –Hope of a new Israel ruled by a descendant of David. –A utopian vision had been promised. 3.Even events that were fulfilled could still be applied in new ways –What was said about specific situations in the original contexts could be applied to later situations.

24 1.The prophets were searched for passages to apply to Jesus. 2.Original context is not regarded. 3.Assumes the prophets spoke hidden meanings that they didn’t understand themselves. 4.This is called typological reading.

25 1.Can be applied to crisis situations now. 2.The general message: –a) Destruction for evildoers b) after a period of purifying trouble then c) rewards for the righteous –This has a never-ending appeal. It is a future hope that all people can look forward to. 3.The certainty of a better future to come for people in a crime-ridden troublesome world is extremely satisfying.

26 This bronze statue promoting the slogan "Let Us Beat Swords into Plowshares" was donated by the Soviet Union to the United Nations. It represents the human wish to end all wars by converting the weapons of death and destruction into peaceful and productive tools that are more beneficial to mankind.

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