Introduction to Old Testament Studies: Age of The Prophets - The Exil and Return Part 1

Introduction to Old Testament Studies  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  52:04
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Major prophet - BC 627 -580
Name means “Yahweh Exalts”. Known as the crying prophet
Why do you think his nom de plume is the Crying prophet?
Preparing the people for the enviable fall of Jerusalem
Descendant of Abiathar - banished by Solomon.
Baruch is his scribe

Call and Mission of Jeremiah

Jeremiah 1 LEB
1 The words of Jeremiah, the son of Hilkiah, among the priests who were in Anathoth, in the land of Benjamin, 2 to whom the word of Yahweh came in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, the king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign. 3 It came also in the days of Jehoiakim, the son of Josiah, the king of Judah, until the end of the eleventh year of Zedekiah, the son of Josiah, the king of Judah, until the exile of Jerusalem in the fifth month. 4 And the word of Yahweh came to me, saying, 5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you came out from the womb I consecrated you; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” 6 Then I said, “Ah, Lord Yahweh! Look, I do not know how to speak, for I am a youth.” 7 But Yahweh said to me, “You must not say, ‘I am a youth,’ for to whomever I send you, you will go, and whatever I command you, you will speak. 8 Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you,” declares Yahweh. 9 Then Yahweh stretched out his hand and he touched my mouth, and Yahweh said to me, “Look, I have put my words in your mouth. 10 See, I appoint you this day over the nations and over the kingdoms, to pluck up and to pull down, and to destroy and to tear down, to build and to plant.” 11 And the word of Yahweh came to me, saying, “What are you seeing, Jeremiah?” And I said, “I am seeing a branch of an almond tree.” 12 Then Yahweh said to me, “You did well to see, for I am watching over my word to perform it.” 13 And the word of Yahweh came to me a second time, saying, “What are you seeing?” And I said, “I am seeing a boiling pot, and its face is from the face of the north.” 14 Then Yahweh said to me, “From the north disaster will be unleashed on all the inhabitants of the land. 15 For, look, I am calling to all the clans of the kingdoms of the north,” declares Yahweh, “and they will come and set each one his throne at the entrance of the gates of Jerusalem, and against all its surrounding walls, and against all the cities of Judah. 16 And I will pass my judgments on them because of all their wickedness in that they have forsaken me, and they made sacrifices to other gods, and they bowed in worship to the works of their hands. 17 But you, you must gird your loins, and stand, and speak to them all that I command you. Do not be afraid of them, or I will shatter you before them. 18 Now look, I have made you today as a fortified city and as an iron pillar and a bronze wall against all the land, against the kings of Judah, against its princes, against its priests, and against the people of the land. 19 And they will fight against you but they will not prevail against you, for I am with you,” declares Yahweh, “to deliver you.”
Jeremiah 1:11–12 LEB
11 And the word of Yahweh came to me, saying, “What are you seeing, Jeremiah?” And I said, “I am seeing a branch of an almond tree.” 12 Then Yahweh said to me, “You did well to see, for I am watching over my word to perform it.”
Vision of Almond tree
Shaqed – Almond tree
Shoqed – Watching
Jeremiah 1:13–14 LEB
13 And the word of Yahweh came to me a second time, saying, “What are you seeing?” And I said, “I am seeing a boiling pot, and its face is from the face of the north.” 14 Then Yahweh said to me, “From the north disaster will be unleashed on all the inhabitants of the land.
Vision of Boiling pot - Enemy of the North is the Babylonian army
This will be the mission of Jeremiah to prepare the people for the coming judgement

Temple sermon

Jeremiah 7 LEB
1 The word that came to Jeremiah from Yahweh, saying, 2 “Stand in the gate of the house of Yahweh and proclaim there this word, and say, ‘Hear the word of Yahweh, all of Judah, those who enter through these gates to bow in worship to Yahweh. 3 Thus says Yahweh of hosts, the God of Israel, “Make your ways and your deeds good and let me dwell with you in this place. 4 Do not trust in the deceitful words, saying, ‘The temple of Yahweh, the temple of Yahweh, they are the temple of Yahweh.’ 5 For if you truly make your ways and your deeds good, if you truly do justice between a man and his neighbor, 6 you do not oppress the alien, the orphan, and the widow, you do not shed innocent blood in this place, and you do not go after other gods to your harm, 7 then I will let you dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your ancestors forever and ever. 8 Look, you are relying for yourselves on deceitful words without benefiting. 9 Will you steal? Will you murder? And will you commit adultery? And will you swear falsely? And will you make a smoke offering to the Baal? And will you go after other gods whom you have not known? 10 And then you come and you stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and you say, ‘we are safe to go on doing all of these detestable things.’ 11 Has this house, which is called by my name, become a cave of robbers in your eyes? Look, I, even I, have seen it,” declares Yahweh. 12 “For go now to my place that was in Shiloh, where I caused my name to dwell in the beginning, and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of my people Israel. 13 And now, because of your doing all these things,” declares Yahweh, “and I have spoken to you over and over again, and you have not listened, and I called you, and you have not answered, 14 therefore I will do to the house that is called by my name, in which you are trusting, and to the place that I gave to you and to your ancestors what I did to Shiloh. 15 And I will cast you out of my sight just as I cast out all of your blood relatives, all of the offspring of Ephraim.” ’ 16 “And you, you must not pray for this people, and you must not lift up for them a cry of entreaty or a prayer, and you must not plead with me, for I will not hear you. 17 Do you not see what they are doing in the towns of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 18 The children are gathering wood, and the fathers are kindling the fire, and the women are kneading dough to make sacrificial cakes for the queen of heaven, and they pour out libations to other gods for the sake of provoking me to anger. 19 Are they provoking me to anger? ” declares Yahweh, “Is it not themselves they hurt, for the sake of the shame of their faces?” 20 Therefore thus says the Lord Yahweh, “Look, my anger and my wrath will be poured out on this place, on the humankind, and on the animal, and on the tree of the field, and on the fruit of the ground, and it will burn and not be extinguished.” 21 Thus says Yahweh of hosts, the God of Israel, “Add your burnt offerings to your sacrifices, and eat the flesh. 22 For I did not speak with your ancestors, nor did I command them in the day of bringing them out from the land of Egypt, concerning the matter of burnt offering and sacrifice. 23 But I only commanded them this word, saying, ‘Obey my voice, and I will be to you God, and you will be to me people, and you must walk in all of the way that I command you, so that it goes well with you.’ 24 Yet they did not obey, and they did not incline their ear, but they walked in their own plans, in the stubbornness of their evil heart, and they became worse instead of better. 25 From the day that your ancestors came out from the land of Egypt until this day I have sent to you all my servants the prophets, day after day, sending again and again. 26 Yet they have not listened to me and they have not inclined their ear, but they have hardened their neck, they did more evil than their ancestors. 27 So you shall speak to them all these words, but they will not listen to you, and you shall call to them, but they will not answer you. 28 “And you shall say to them, ‘This is the nation that has not obeyed the voice of Yahweh their God, and they have not accepted discipline. The truth has perished, and it is cut off from their mouths. 29 Shear your hair and throw it away, and lift up a lament on the barren heights, for Yahweh has rejected and forsaken the generation of his wrath.’ 30 For the people of Judah have done evil in my eyes,” declares Yahweh, “They have set their abominations in the house that is called by my name, to defile it. 31 And they built the high place of Topheth, which is in the Valley of Ben Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire, which I have not commanded, and it did not come into my mind. 32 Therefore look, days are about to come,” declares Yahweh, “and it will no longer be called Topheth or the Valley of Ben Hinnom, but the Valley of the Slaughter, and they will bury in Topheth until there is no more place. 33 And the dead bodies of this people will be as food for the birds of the heavens, and for the animals of the earth, without anyone to scare them away. 34 And I will cause to disappear from the towns of Judah and from the streets of Jerusalem the sound of jubilation, and the sound of joy, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, for the land will become a site of ruins.
The temple cannot contain God
The Temple in not the Lord
Temple becomes a symbol of Judah’s sin
Jeremiah is arrested and placed on trial, Acquitted (To relieve from a charge of fault or crime; declare not guilty}

Vision of the Figs

Chapter 24 Vision of the figs
Good figs - Those who go into Exile
Bad figs - Those who stay in Jerusalem

Jeremiah 27 & 28

Sign of the Yoke - Summit to the Babylonians, Jeremiah will Wears a Ox Yoke
Hananiah - Another Prophet confronts Jeremiah And breaks the yoke that he is wearing. Jeremiah will rebukes Hananiah And God curses him and he dies

Letter to the Exiles

Jeremiah 29 LEB
1 And these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem to the remainder of the exiles, and to the priests, and to the prophets, and to all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had deported from Jerusalem to Babylon, 2 after the going out of Jeconiah the king, and the queen mother, and the court officials, the leaders of Judah and Jerusalem, and the artisans, and the smiths from Jerusalem, 3 by the hand of Elasah, the son of Shaphan, and Gemariah, the son of Hilkiah, whom Zedekiah, the king of Judah, sent to Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, to Babylon, saying, 4 “Thus says Yahweh of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have deported from Jerusalem to Babylon, 5 ‘Build houses and live in them, and plant gardens and eat their fruit. 6 Take wives and father sons and daughters, and take for your sons wives, and give your daughters to men that they may bear sons and daughters, and multiply there, and you must not be few. 7 And seek the prosperity of the city where I have deported you, and pray on behalf of it to Yahweh, for in its prosperity you will have prosperity.’ 8 For thus says Yahweh of hosts, the God of Israel, ‘Do not let your prophets who are in your midst, and your diviners, deceive you, and you must not listen to your dreams that you are causing them to dream. 9 For they are prophesying falsely to you in my name; I have not sent them,’ declares Yahweh. 10 For thus says Yahweh, ‘As soon as the time has passed, seventy years for Babylon, I will attend to you, and I will fulfill my good word to you, to bring you back to this place. 11 For I know the plans that I am planning concerning you,’ declares Yahweh, ‘plans for prosperity and not for harm, to give to you a future and a hope. 12 Then when you call me, and you come and pray to me, then I will listen to you. 13 When you search for me, then you will find me, if you seek me with all your heart. 14 And I will let myself be found by you,’ declares Yahweh, ‘and I will restore your fortunes, and I will gather you from all the nations and from all the places to which I have driven you,’ declares Yahweh, ‘and I will bring you back to the place from which I deported you.’ 15 Because you have said, ‘Yahweh has raised up prophets for us in Babylon’— 16 for thus says Yahweh concerning the king who sits on the throne of David and concerning all the people who live in this city, your fellow kinsmen who did not go with you into the exile— 17 thus says Yahweh of hosts, ‘Look, I am going to send among them the sword, the famine, and the plague, and I will make them like rotten figs that cannot be eaten because of their bad quality. 18 And I will pursue them with the sword, with the famine, and with the plague, and I will make them a terror to all the kingdoms of the earth, a curse, and a horror, and an object of hissing, and a disgrace among all the nations to which I have driven them, 19 because they did not listen to my words,’ declares Yahweh, ‘when I sent to them my servants the prophets, sending over and over again, and they would not listen,’ declares Yahweh. 20 And you, hear the word of Yahweh, all you exiles whom I sent away from Jerusalem to Babylon. 21 Thus says Yahweh of hosts, the God of Israel, concerning Ahab, the son of Kolaiah, and concerning Zedekiah, the son of Maaseiah, who are prophesying to you in my name a lie, ‘Look, I am going to give them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, and he will strike them before your eyes. 22 And a curse will be taken up because of them by all the exiles of Judah who are in Babylon, saying, “May Yahweh make you like Zedekiah and like Ahab, whom the king of Babylon roasted in the fire,” 23 because they have done a disgraceful thing in Israel, and they have committed adultery with the wives of their neighbors, and they have spoken words in my name, lies that I have not commanded them, and I am he who knows, and I am a witness,’ declares Yahweh.” 24 And to Shemaiah the Nehelamite you shall say, saying, 25 “Thus says Yahweh of hosts, the God of Israel, saying, ‘Because you yourself sent a letter in your name to all the people who are in Jerusalem, and to Zephaniah, the son of Maaseiah, the priest, and to all the priests, saying, 26 “Yahweh made you priest instead of Jehoiada the priest, so that there are overseers in the house of Yahweh over any mad man who exhibits the behavior of a prophet, and you must put him into the stocks and into the neck iron, 27 and so then why have you not rebuked Jeremiah the Anathothite who exhibits the behavior of a prophet for you? 28 Because he has sent to us in Babylon, saying, ‘It will be a long time, build houses and live in them, and plant gardens and eat their fruit.’ ” ’ ” 29 And Zephaniah the priest read this letter in the hearing of Jeremiah the prophet. 30 And the word of Yahweh came to Jeremiah, saying, 31 “Send to all the exiles, saying, ‘Thus says Yahweh concerning Shemaiah the Nehelamite: “Because Shemaiah prophesied to you, though I have not sent him, and he has made you trust in a lie,” 32 therefore thus says Yahweh, “Look, I am going to punish Shemaiah the Nehelamite and his offspring. There will not be for him a man who lives in the midst of this people, and he will not see the good that I am going to do to my people,” declares Yahweh, “For he has spoken rebellion against Yahweh.” ’ ”
Letter to the Exiles
Live as Normally as possible
Be Good Citizens
Do not listen to the false prophet
You will return in God’s time

A Sign of Hope

Chapter 32
Buys a field in Anathoth
Sign of hope that the people will return to the land
Jeremiah forced to go to Egypt where he dies. Tradition Sawed in half
It has been suggested that Jeremiah is the Editor of the Deuteromistic History and the author of the book of Lamentations
Bible Project Overview of Jeremiah:


Five funeral songs deal with the destruction of Jerusalem. Written in the Qinah meter which is a Funeral/Dirge with a Rhythm 3:2
Written in the Acrostic - Each letter of the Hebrew alphabet begins a verse.
Mourns the fall of Jerusalem


Prophet in Transition
Ezekiel - “God will Strengthen”. A priest becomes prophet. His Father is also associated with priesthood. Book of Ezekiel shows the influence of a priestly background. Holiness, the defilement of the temple, clean/unclean, Torah, legal codes. Important in understanding his vision of the restoration of Judah/Jerusalem
Taken in the first deportation - 597 BC when he was 25 years old. The Age to become a priest. At 592 BC he would have been 30 years old when he recieved his Call of the lord. This was the time when he would have started serving at the temple. At 571 BC when he was 50 years old he receives his Last vision. Time he would have retired from the priesthood.
Becomes a prophet exclusively to the exiles.
prepares the people for the fall of Jerusalem
Does not support a quick return
Becomes a prophet of Hope after the fall of Jerusalem
Spends the remainder of his life in Babylon


Chapter 1-24
Oracles against Jerusalem
Chapters 25 – 32
Oracles against foreign nations
Chapters 33 – 48
Oracles of Hope
Restoration of Land
Restoration of Worship

Vision of the Chariot throne

Ezekiel 1:4–28 CSB
4 I looked, and there was a whirlwind coming from the north, a huge cloud with fire flashing back and forth and brilliant light all around it. In the center of the fire, there was a gleam like amber. 5 The likeness of four living creatures came from it, and this was their appearance: They looked something like a human, 6 but each of them had four faces and four wings. 7 Their legs were straight, and the soles of their feet were like the hooves of a calf, sparkling like the gleam of polished bronze. 8 They had human hands under their wings on their four sides. All four of them had faces and wings. 9 Their wings were touching. The creatures did not turn as they moved; each one went straight ahead. 10 Their faces looked something like the face of a human, and each of the four had the face of a lion on the right, the face of an ox on the left, and the face of an eagle. 11 That is what their faces were like. Their wings were spread upward; each had two wings touching that of another and two wings covering its body. 12 Each creature went straight ahead. Wherever the Spirit wanted to go, they went without turning as they moved. 13 The likeness of the living creatures was like the appearance of blazing coals of fire or like torches. Fire was moving back and forth between the living creatures; it was bright, with lightning coming out of it. 14 The creatures were darting back and forth like flashes of lightning. 15 When I looked at the living creatures, there was one wheel on the ground beside each of the four-faced creatures. 16 The appearance of the wheels and their craftsmanship was like the gleam of beryl, and all four had the same likeness. Their appearance and craftsmanship was like a wheel within a wheel. 17 When they moved, they went in any of the four directions, without turning as they moved. 18 Their four rims were tall and awe-inspiring, completely covered with eyes all around. 19 When the living creatures moved, the wheels moved beside them, and when the creatures rose from the earth, the wheels also rose. 20 Wherever the Spirit wanted to go, the creatures went in the direction the Spirit was moving. The wheels rose alongside them, for the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. 21 When the creatures moved, the wheels moved; when the creatures stopped, the wheels stopped; and when the creatures rose from the earth, the wheels rose alongside them, for the spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels. 22 Over the heads of the living creatures the likeness of an expanse was spread out. It gleamed like awe-inspiring crystal,23 and under the expanse their wings extended one toward another. They each also had two wings covering their bodies. 24 When they moved, I heard the sound of their wings like the roar of a huge torrent, like the voice of the Almighty, and a sound of tumult like the noise of an army. When they stopped, they lowered their wings. 25 A voice came from above the expanse over their heads; when they stopped, they lowered their wings. 26 Something like a throne with the appearance of lapis lazuli was above the expanse over their heads. On the throne, high above, was someone who looked like a human. 27 From what seemed to be his waist up, I saw a gleam like amber, with what looked like fire enclosing it all around. From what seemed to be his waist down, I also saw what looked like fire. There was a brilliant light all around him. 28 The appearance of the brilliant light all around was like that of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day. This was the appearance of the likeness of the Lord’s glory. When I saw it, I fell facedown and heard a voice speaking.
Stormy wind coming out of the north, North is related to God’s Abode. This is a Theophany

Winged Creature

Represent the Four aspects of God
Lot of People see a correlation between Ezekiel 4 beast and Revelation four Beast?
Did represented the 4 sides of the Tabernacle and the tribes that surrounded it.
4 Completeness
4 Corners
4 Faces
Two wheels
Gyro scope
All knowing of God
Glory of God
God on his throne
Brilliance from waist up
Waist down could see
Ezekiel’s response was to fall down on his face

Commission of Ezekiel (2:1 – 3:27)

Ezekiel 2:1 LEB
1 And he said to me, “Son of man, stand on your feet, so that I can speak with you.”
Son of Man - 93 Times of Ezekiel. This is Non-Messianic. This Refers to dependence on God, “mortal man”. Different then in Daniel or in the Gospels

5 Commissions

Prophet to a rebellious people
God’s word
Did not enjoy the message but knew that it was from God
Prophet to a stubborn people
Prophet to the exiles
Watchman for the house of Israel
Portray-er of the Lord’s Action
Speaking (action out) the words of the Scroll
Mouth opened toward the end of the judgment section


3 Main parts after call
Oracles of warning
Before fall of Jerusalem
Oracles against the foreign nations
just after fall
Oracles of Hope and Consolation

Major points in Ezekiel

Against the false worship
Baal and the high places
Jerusalem to be destroyed along with the temple
Symbol of the exile
Collecting all he could and he could and going through the breech of the wall
a hole he had dug in the wall
Condemns false prophets and idol worshipers
Allegory - Representation of a person or event by the use of symbolism
The Useless Vine (15)
Importance of grapes in this culture
Worthless vine good for nothing
Jerusalem has no worth outside of God
Escaped fire (597) but will be consumed (587)
The Faithless wife (16)
Common them in the prophets (Hosea and Jeremiah)
Addressed to Jerusalem
Took who from abandonment
Rejected all God did for her and faces judgment
Words of hope
Allegory of the Eagles (17)
1 – 10 Allegory
11-20 interpretation
First eagle – Babylonia
Top of the Cedar – House of David
Topmost shoot – Jehoiachin
Second eagle – Egypt
Zedekiah’s ill-advised revolt against Babylonia
leads to the destruction of Jerusalem
Allegory of the Eagle part II
Death of his wife
Illness and death are recorded in 24:15-27
Not to mourn the death
The same the exiles were to do when Jerusalem Fell
Oracles against foreign nations
God is the God of all nations

Message of Hope

Directed toward encouraging the people to hope for the future
33-39 – Restoration of Palestine
40-48 – Restoration of the Temple and worship
The Dry Bones
Valley of Dry Bones –can they live
Bones put together – breath put in them
Symbolic of Restoration of Israel
Scattered about like dry bones
Sacred river flowing out of the Temple


Common name
Against Edom for its treatment for Judah. They will get their just due from God. Exiles will return, rule over Edomites.
Emphasis on the Lord’s universal sovereignty

The Fall of Babylon

Babylonians known as a Shooting star, Short-lived
Nebuchadnezzar died in 562 BCE
Evil-Murdoch – 562-560 BCE
Freed Jehoiachin – became a ward of the state
Nabonidus 556 -539 BCE
Tried to change the National Religion
Followed father’s Changes
Caused major division among the people
Serves a viceroy
never really king
Rise of Cyrus the Persian - Defeated an alliance of Lydia, Babylonia, and Egypt
Lydia - 546
Babylonia -539
Egyptian frontier – 538
Cyrus is seen as an instrument of the lord, un-named in Isaiah 41.


Isaiah 40-66 introduces us to a new section in the Book of Isaiah. There are Changes in Historical perspective. Isaiah 36-39, Deals with events in the reign of King Hezekiah (705 – 701 BCE).
Isaiah 40 - Jerusalem lay in ruins. Judah is in exile in Babylon. Ca 539 Cyrus defeats the Babylonians
Deals with the 538 the decree of Cyrus - Allowing them to return from exile. Helps rebuild their country.
160 years - Pause. Some will credit it to the Isaiah school

Decree of Cyrus

538 BCE
The faithful are those who return from Babylon, Instead of staying where they are now comfortable.

Four servant songs in Isaiah

Emphasis on the servant
42:1-4 - Mission of the servant
49:1-6 - Responsibility of the Servant
50:4-11 - Speaks of the Servants Submission
52:13-53:12 - Trial death and Vindication
No one knows the servant. Some see it as Hezekiah, but applied to Jesus by Gospels

Return from Exile

Four different returns from the exile described in Ezra and Nehemiah
538 Sheshbazzar (son of Jehoiachin)
520 Zerrubabel - Rise of Judaism
445-444 Nehemiah - Layperson. Rebuild Walls of Jerusalem. Man of Prayer.
398 (458) Ezra - Priest brings the 1st 5 books of the old testament. known as the Father of Judaism. Establishes the scribal tradition, Formation of the written word

Dating the Third and fourth returns

Question emerges with Ezra’s return
Ezra 7:9 LEB
9 For on the first day of the first month he began the journey from Babylonia; and on the first day of the fifth month he came to Jerusalem, for the good hand of his God was on him.
In the seventh year of Artaxerxes’ reign - There are two kings named Artaxerxes. Giving us two possible dates 458 and 398. There is another date possibility however. The suggestion comes from the idea that the return came in the 37th year of the first Artaxerxes reign, Being in 428.

Haggai and Zechariah

Promote the rebuilding for the temple - 520 BC
3 reasons they cannot rebuild the temple
Depressed over the condition of the land
Faced opposition of throes who remained in the land
Faced with Samaritans - not pure


1-8 - Promotes the rebuilding of the temple
9-14 - Promotes the day of the Lord. Time of judgment

Apocalyptic literature

Apocalyptic means in the Greek to reveal or to make hidden not end times. or judgement about the en
Apocalyptic lit. written in time of oppression. Develops in the Persian period. Different from the prophetic literature. Apocalyptic literature is Aimed at encouraging the faithful during a time of trouble. Prophets are about judgment and repentance. Apocalyptic Written first and then read, Prophetic spoken and then written.
Use of unusual imagery. God is directly involved in the conflict. Triumph of God over universal evil
Sometimes written under an assumed name
This added validity to the message
Daniel 7-12


Most apocalyptic book of the Old Testament.
Daniel was taken to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar in 606 BC.
Divided into two sections
1-6 – Daniel Stories
Introduce Daniel as a person who is divinely gifted to interpret dreams
Establish a setting in the time of the Babylonian Empire for the activity of Daniel
Portrayals of Daniel and his friends in the face of threat provide a model for faithfulness for readers living under imperial rule
Emphasizes fidelity to God
Apocalyptic visions of a brighter future for those under persecution
May have been written during the Greek occupation
167 B.C.
Considered the last book written in the OT

Stories about Daniel (Dan. 1:1-6:28)

The first story (1:1-21) concerns the captivity of Daniel and his three friends of the Jerusalem nobility.
Each of the friends was given a Babylonian name.
Daniel (“God is my Judge/vindicator”) became Belteshazzar (a name that invoked the Babylonian god Bel)
Hananiah (“Yahweh is gracious”) became Shadrach (“companion of Aku”);
Mishael (“Who is like God?”) became Meshach (again invoking Aku);
Azariah (“Yahweh is my help”) became Abednego (“servant of Nebo”)
King ordered that they were to be educated for three years for court service. They were to be fed from the King's table. "But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with royal rations of food and wine" (1:8). He and his friends were resolved to be faithful to the laws of their Jewish faith. When the servant brought them the rich food, they asked instead for vegetables, since there was no danger of violating Jewish laws concerning food if they ate no meat or milk products. When the three years were up, the Jewish youths were as healthy as any others and much more skilled in wisdom.
(2:1-49). Nebuchadnezzar had a dream his Wisest men could not interpret. Daniel told him the dream had to do with things that would come to pass "in the latter days" (2:28). Eschatology (2:1-30).
In Nebuchadnezzar's dream
He had seen a great image with a head of gold, "breasts and arms of silver," belly and thighs of bronze, legs of iron, And feet "partly of iron and partly of clay" (2:33).
Mixed Interpretations
The image was broken by a stone that became "a great mountain and filled the whole earth" (2:35). The image represented kingdoms that had dominated the Near East, beginning with Nebuchadnezzar. Others were the Medes, the Persians, and the empire of Alexander. But Alexander's kingdom, the one made of iron, was so divided that part of it was mixed with clay. It (the Seleucids and Ptolemies) would crumble. Then, the kingdom of God would come in and replace all earthly kingdoms (2:31---45). Because of Daniel's success in interpreting the dream, he was given a place of honor in the king's court (2:46---49).
When the king set up an idol and demanded that everyone worship it, the three young men refused. When the news of the Jews' refusal to worship reached the king, they were ordered thrown into a fiery furnace. When the king looked in to see what had happened to them, he saw not three, but four, one of whom was like "a son of the gods" (3:25 NIV).
Another dream of the king.
He dreamed of a mighty tree that covered the earth; On God's orders, a heavenly being descended and cut down the tree.
When Daniel was asked to interpret the dream, he told the king that he (the king) was the tree. He would suffer temporary insanity, during which he would act like an animal because he exalted himself above God. When a year had passed, the king suffered as Daniel said. Then, the king acknowledged the power of the Most High God (4:1-37)

Belshazzar's feast

Belshazzar was the son and coregent of Nabonidus (he was called the son of Nebuchadnezzar in 5:2). Nabonidus was an amateur archaeologist who was more interested in old ruins than he was in the breakdown of his kingdom. While Belshazzar was having a wild drinking bout using sacred vessels from the Jerusalem Temple, he saw a message written on the wall. The words were MENE, MENE, TEKEL, PARSIN. Wise men could read it probably in Hebrew letters. Daniel, when called to interpret them, explained that they pronounced Belshazzar's doom.
His days were numbered, for he had been found lacking in leadership qualities. Now, his kingdom would be divided among the Medes and the Persians.

Daniel in the Lion’s Den

The final is the most famous of the Daniel stories. Daniel was still the faithful worshiper of the LORD. His fellow governors persuaded the king to make a decree that no one could pray to any god for thirty days. Only the king could be petitioned. Daniel ignored the edict and continued to worship three times a day as was his custom. As a result, he was thrown to the lions. The king realized what a mistake he had made and worried all night about Daniel. But in the morning, Daniel walked out of the lion's den unharmed. Those who had set the trap for him were fed to the lions.

Daniel's visions (Dan. 7:1-12:13).

The four beasts from the sea (Dan. 7:1-28).

In the first vision, four beasts arose out of the sea. For Jews, the sea always represented a place of awe and mystery. It was a fearsome place, which had great monsters that swallowed up men who dared to venture out into it. This was not unusual for them to conceive of evil creatures coming from the sea. The beasts in the vision represented the strong empires of the time: the Babylonian, the Median, which lay east of Mesopotamian region; the Persian; and finally the Greek or Hellenistic empire of Alexander and his successors. The ten horns on the fourth beast represented the ten kings who followed Alexander. Since the horn was a symbol of power, the writer showed his contempt for Antiochus Epiphanes by referring to him as a little horn, a button with a big mouth "that spoke arrogantly" (7:20). But God ("the Ancient One" 7:22) would put an end to his persecution and his mouthings. The kingship and dominion and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the holy ones of the Most High; their kingdoms shall be an everlasting kingdom, and all dominion shall serve and obey them (7:27).

The ram and the he-goat (Dan. 8:1-27).

Daniel's next vision is a ram with ten horns, which moved in every direction, defeating every beast it encountered. The ram was the Persian Empire, which owed much of its strength to an alliance with the Medes.

The seventy weeks (Dan. 9:1-27).

Numerology came into full play in this vision, along with the introduction of the angel Gabriel as the chief messenger for God. Daniel was pondering Jeremiah's prophecy of the seventy weeks "in the first year of Darius, the son of Ahasuerus . . . who became king over the realm of the Chaldeans" (9:1). This verse holds problems, since Persian records currently available h110W nothing of such a king. The Chaldeans, furthermore, were the Babylonians, not the Persians. After a long prayer of. repentance and confession, both of his sins and the sins of the people (9:3-19), Daniel was visited by the angel Gabriel. Gabriel's purpose was to reveal the meaning of the seventy weeks, which were explained as "seventy weeks of years" or 490 years. Unfortunately, the meaning of what was revealed to Daniel has not been passed on to us, either by written or oral tradition, 


500 – 450 BCE - Post-Exilic
“My Messenger” - Could be a title, not a name
Cultic Prophet - Strong influence of priestly ideas
Question and answer with the lord
Concerned with Proper worship, Proper conduct of the priest, Encouragement of the laity


500 – 350 BCE
Prophet and apocalyptic
The Locust are coming
The Great Day of the Lord - Darkening of the sun and the moon turning to blood as a sign of its approach.
The Lord judges . Like a farmer harvesting grain, the nations would be cut down


Setting: Persian Kingdom, Mid-fifth Century BCE. God is not mentioned in this book at all. Important used in the Jewish feast of Purim


Ahasurus (Xerxes I, 485-464) had a banquet for his friends. Called his queen Vashti to appear at the banquet, she refused. Set up a national search for a replacement.
Esther - Beautiful Jewish girl, reared by her elderly cousin, Mordecai. He is a court official. Head of Persian secret service. National beauty contest held. Ester hast to conceal the fact that she was a Jew. She is chosen to be queen.
Mordecai learns of a plot against the king. Through Esther he is able to worn him.
Haman the Agagite - Prime Minister. Mordecai refused to bow to Haman so Haman decided to get rid of Mordecai and since Haman hated Jews he would get rid of all Jews.
Haman cast lots to decide when would be the best time to get rid of the Jews. Purim means casting lots. Using persuasion and a bribe. Haman convinced that on a certain day, all Jews were to be killed. King didn’t realize that Esther was a Jew.
Mordecai immediately went into mourning
Esther risked her life to speak to the king invited King and Haman to a dinner. Haman honored at the invite went and had a gallows made in his garden so he can watch the hangings and killings of the Jews.
King having a sleepless night. Reads about how Mordecai saved his life. Next day ask Haman how he should honor a person. Thinking it is him Haman
Clad the person in the king’s robes
Put him on the Kings horse
Lead him through the streets of the capital
King likes the idea and tells Haman to do it for Mordecai. Day of the dinner. King asked Esther what she wanted him to do. She revealed that she was a Jew and pleaded for her life. She told the king that Haman was the cause of all the troubles.
King leaves in anger. Haman throws himself at the feet of the queen. She is reclining.
King walks in sees Haman pleading. Thinks he is trying to rape her. Haman is hanged on the gallows that he made for Mordecai. King cannot go up against his decree. God like. Sends out a decree that Jews can defend themselves. Jews use it as an opportunity to rid themselves of enemies through out the country. Mordecai becomes prime minister.
Purim is a secular holiday. Celebrating the overcoming of the anti-Semitic plot.

Wisdom and Poetic Literature

5 books
Song of Solomon


Psalm means “praise”.


David - Known as a musician. Many psalms begin with the phrase “by David” or “in the style of David”
Sons of Korah
Moses - Psalm 90
Others have no credit given

Separated into 5 Books

1 – 41
The Hymn book of ancient Israel


Musical interlude between versus
While we look at the Bible as being God’s revelation to humanity, the Psalms can seen as humanity’s response to that revelation. Both public an private worship service. Their confession of faith.

Four types of Psalms

Expressed the deep anguish of a individual or community
The most common type of Psalm
Shares anguish of a person
Praise in a minor key
Anticipates God’s deliverance
30- Song of Thanksgiving for individual healing
107 – Song of Thanksgiving for the deliverance of travelers to a holy festival
Often accompanies Lament
Enthronement Songs
Celebrated the kingship of YHWH
Difference between praise and worship
Praise what he does
Worship Who he is
Who is the wise and the foolish
Right relationship
Wicked seeks to follow his own way
Psalm 1 LEB
Blessed is the man who does not walk in the advice of the wicked; nor does he stand in the way of sinners; nor does he sit in the assembly of mockers. Instead, in the law of Yahweh is his delight, and on his law he meditates day and night. And so, he is like a tree planted by streams of water that gives its fruit in its season; its leaf also does not wither. Therefore all that he does prospers. Not so the wicked. Instead, they are like the chaff that the wind scatters. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous; for Yahweh knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.
Wisdom Literature
a product of the people rooted in the experiences of life and representing the distillation of those experiences
Originated and was nurtured by the family or tribe
In its earliest form was oral
Wisdom is divided into two types
Information for living everyday life
simple and easy to commit to living
Takes practical and turns it on its head
Challenge practical wisdom
Psalm 82 LEB
A psalm of Asaph. God stands in the divine assembly; he administers judgment in the midst of the gods. “How long will you judge unjustly and show favoritism to the wicked? Selah Judge on behalf of the helpless and the orphan; provide justice to the afflicted and the poor. Rescue the helpless and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” They do not know or consider. They go about in the darkness, so that all the foundations of the earth are shaken. I have said, “You are gods, and sons of the Most High, all of you. However, you will die like men, and you will fall like one of the princes.” Rise up, O God, judge the earth, because you shall inherit all the nations.
Mormons use as to say we become God’s
Theology in Psalms
Good and Bad


A saying gives colorful expression to a commonly observed fact or a homey wisdom.
Created by Solomon and other writers.
Solomon’s influence
Song of Songs - Young
Proverbs -Midlife
Ecclesiastes - Old
Beginning of wisdom = Fear of the Lord
Emphasis on:
God requires our service
Secure a good life requires a commitment to God
Tension between the wise and the fool. Folly = Living a life committed to oneself.
Strong emphasis not to commit adultery
Don’t Gossip
4 threats to Existence
Proverbs 31:10–31 LEB
A woman of excellence, who will find? For her worth is far more than precious jewels. The heart of her husband trusts in her, and gain he will not lack. She does him good, but not harm all the days of her life. She seeks wool and flax, and she works with the diligence of her hands. She is like the ships of a merchant; from far off she brings her food; And she arises while it is still night, and gives food to her household, and tasks to her servant girls. She considers a field and buys it, from the fruit of her hand she plants a vineyard. She girds her waist in strength, and makes her arms strong. She perceives that her merchandise is good; her lamp does not go out in the night. Her hands she puts onto the distaff, and her palms hold a spindle. Her palm she opens to the poor, and her hand she reaches out to the needy. She does not fear for her house when it snows, for her entire household is clothed in crimson. She makes for herself coverings; her clothing is fine linen and purple. Her husband is known at the gates, in his seat among the elders of the land. Linen garments she makes and sells, and she supplies sashes for the merchants. Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the future. She opens her mouth with wisdom, and instruction of kindness is upon her tongue. She looks after the ways of her household, and the bread of idleness she will not eat. Her children rise and consider her happy, her husband also, and he praises her; “Many daughters have done excellence, but you surpass all of them.” Charm is deceit and beauty is vain; but a woman who fears Yahweh shall be praised. Give to her from the fruit of her hand, and may they praise her works in the city gates.
Ideal wife



Not to explain suffering but Seek to justify God’s way. Probing the depths of faith even in the midst of suffering.


Job - Righteous wealthy man. Living in Uz, East of Israel
7 Sons and 3 Daughters
One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them
HaSatan - “The Adversary
Let me Test Job he will surly curse God

Job’s Trials

Loses wealth and family
Doesn’t Curse God
Becomes covered with sores
Doesn’t Curse God
God is the Author of both Good and Evil
Three friends come to see him
Sit and look at him for 7 days with out uttering a single word. Job’s wife’s advice, curse God and die.
Cycle of speeches between Job and the three friends in Chapters 4-7. Funeral home theology
The Man who has visions
Job’s sickness was clear evidence of his sinfulness
God is just waiting for his followers to do wrong and then he could destroy them
Saw it in a vision
Job to Elphaz
Job complained that God had become his enemy
Ignoring Elphaz’s speech
Wants God to crush him and put him out of his misery
the Traditionalist
Defends the justice of God
Job is suffering because of Job’s Children
Seek God and everything will be fine
Job to Bildad
Ignoring Bildad
He spoke to God
God made him now he will destroy him
He just wanted to be left alone so he could possibly have a little comfort before he died
God Destroys both the blameless and the wicked
Defends his innocence
God’s right-hand man
God knows all things Job knows very little
Just needs to get rid of his sins and every thing will be ok
Job to Zophar
Job defends his innocence
Charged him with undermining religion by assuming that he know more than his friends, the elders, and even God
Returns to the idea that God doesn’t trust anyone
Gets mad at his friends
Miserable comfort
Says the same thing he been saying
Rebukes his friends
Points out that even if he had sinned it had been a personal fault not a public one
These things were public
One of those people has the answer even if he doesn’t know the question
Lectured Job on the fate of the wicked according to traditional wisdom
Calls his friends liars
Go through another round
A mediator
God is omnipotent
don’t question God
Job doesn’t listen

YHWH speeches

Job 38–41 LEB
Then Yahweh answered Job from the storm, and he said, “Who is this darkening counsel by words without knowledge? Prepare yourself for a difficult task like a man, and I will question you, and you shall declare to me. “Where were you at my laying the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you possess understanding. Who determined its measurement? Yes, you do know. Or who stretched the measuring line upon it? On what were its bases sunk? Or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars were singing together and all the sons of God shouted for joy? “Or who shut the sea in with doors at its bursting, when it went out of the womb, at my making the clouds its garment and thick darkness its swaddling band, and I prescribed my rule for it, and I set bars and doors, and I said, ‘You shall come up to here, but you shall not go further, and here it will set a boundary for your proud surging waves’? “Have you ever in your life commanded the morning? Have you made the dawn know its place, to take hold of the earth’s skirts so that the wicked might be shaken off from it? It is changed like clay under a seal, and they appear like a garment. And their light is withheld from the wicked, and their uplifted arm is broken. “Have you entered into the sea’s sources? Or have you walked around in the recesses of the deep? Have the gates of death been revealed to you? Or have you seen the gates of deep shadow? Have you considered closely the earth’s vast expanse? Declare it, if you know all of it. “Where then is the way where the light dwells? And where then is its place, that you may take it to its territory, and that you might discern the paths to its home? You know, for you were born then, and the number of your days is great. Have you entered into the storehouses of the snow, or have you seen the storehouses of the hail, which I have reserved for the time of trouble, for the day of battle and war? Where then is the way where the light is distributed, where he scatters the east wind upon the earth? “Who has cut open a channel for the torrents and a way for the thunder bolts, to bring rain on a land where no one lives, a desert where no humans live, to satisfy desert and wasteland, and to cause the ground to put forth the rising of grass? Is there a father for the rain, or who fathered the drops of dew? From whose womb did the ice come forth, and who fathered the frost of heaven? Like stone the waters become hard, and the faces of the deep freeze. “Can you bind the chains of the Pleiades, or can you loosen the cords of Orion? Can you lead forth the southern constellations at their appointed time, or can you lead the Bear with its children? Do you know heaven’s statutes, or can you establish their rule on the earth? Can you lift up your voice to the clouds so that a flood of water may cover you? Can you send forth lightnings, that they may go? And will they say to you, ‘Here we are’? Who has put wisdom in the ibis, or who has given understanding to the rooster? Who can number the clouds with wisdom? Or who can tilt heaven’s jars, at the flowing of the dust into a cast and the clods cling together? “Can you hunt prey for the lion? And can you satisfy the hunger of strong lions when they are crouched in the dens, when they lie in the thicket in an ambush? Who prepares for the crow its prey, when its young ones cry to God for help, and they wander around for lack of food? “Do you know the time when the goats of the rocks give birth? Do you observe the doe deer’s giving birth? Can you number the months they fulfill, and do you know the time of its giving birth? When they crouch, they bring forth their young ones; they get rid of their labor pains. Their young ones grow strong; they grow up in the open; they go forth and do not return to them. “Who has sent forth the wild ass free? And who has released the wild donkey’s bonds, to which I have given the wilderness as its house and the salt flat as its dwelling place? It scorns the city’s turmoil; it does not hear the driver’s shouts. It explores the mountains as its pasture and searches after every kind of green plant. “Is the wild ox willing to serve you, or will he spend the night at your feeding trough? Can you tie the wild ox with its rope to a furrow, or will it harrow the valleys after you? Can you trust it because its strength is great, or will you hand your labor over to it? Can you rely on it that it will return your grain and that it will gather it to your threshing floor? “The wings of the female ostrich flap— are they the pinions of the stork or the falcon? Indeed, it leaves its eggs to the earth, and it lets them be warmed on the ground, and it forgets that a foot might crush an egg, and a wild animal might trample it. It deals cruelly with its young ones, as if they were not its own, as if without fear that its labor were in vain, because God made it forget wisdom, and he did not give it a share in understanding. When it spreads its wings aloft, it laughs at the horse and its rider. “Do you give power to the horse? Do you clothe its neck with a mane? Do you make it leap like the locust? The majesty of its snorting is terrifying. They paw in the valley, and it exults with strength; it goes out to meet the battle. It laughs at danger and is not dismayed, and it does not turn back from before the sword. Upon it the quiver rattles along with the flash of the spear and the short sword. With roar and rage it races over the ground, and it cannot stand still at the sound of the horn. Whenever a horn sounds, it says, ‘Aha!’ And it smells the battle from a distance— the thunder of the commanders and the war cry. “Does the hawk soar by your wisdom? Does it spread its wings to the south? Or does the eagle fly high at your command and construct its nest high? It lives on the rock and spends the night on the rock point and the mountain stronghold. From there it spies out the prey; its eyes look from far away. And its young ones lick blood greedily, and where the dead carcasses are, there they are.” Then Yahweh answered Job and said, “Shall a faultfinder contend with Shaddai? Anyone who argues with God must answer it.” So Job answered Yahweh and said, “Look, I am insignificant. What shall I answer you? I lay my hand on my mouth. Once I have spoken, and I will not answer; even twice, but I will not proceed.” Then Yahweh answered Job from the storm, and he said, “Prepare yourself for a difficult task like a man, and I will question you, and you shall declare to me. “Indeed, would you annul my justice? Would you condemn me, so that you might be righteous? Or do you have an arm like God, and can you thunder with a voice like his? Adorn yourself with pride and dignity, and clothe yourself with splendor. Pour out the overflowing of your anger, and look at all the proud, and humble them. Look at all the proud, humble them, and tread down the wicked where they stand. Hide them in the dust together; bind their faces in the grave. And I will also praise you, that your own right hand can save you. “Look, Behemoth, which I have made just as I made you; it eats grass like the ox. Look, its strength is in its loins and its power in the muscles of its stomach. It keeps its tail straight like a cedar; the sinews of its thighs are tightly wound. Its bones are tubes of copper, its limbs like rods of iron. “It is the first of God’s actions; the one who made him furnishes it with his sword. Yes, the mountains yield produce for it, and all wild animals play there. Under the lotus tree it lies, in the hiding place of the reeds and in the marsh. The lotus trees cover it with their shade; the wadi’s poplar trees surround it. Look, if the river is turbulent, it is not frightened; it is confident even though the Jordan rushes against its mouth. Can anyone take it by its eyes? Can he pierce its nose with a snare? “Can you draw out Leviathan with a fishhook? Or can you tie down its mouth with a cord? Can you put a rope in its nose? Or can you pierce its jawbone with a hook? Will it make numerous pleas for mercy to you? Or will it speak gentle words to you? Will it make a covenant with you? Will you take it as a slave forever? Will you play with it as with birds and put it on a leash for your girls? Will guildsmen bargain over it? Will they divide it between tradesmen? Can you fill its skin with harpoons or its head with fish spears? Lay your hands on it; think about the battle—you will not do it again! “Look, the hope of capturing it is false. Will one be hurled down even at its sight? Is it not fierce when somebody stirs it? Who then is he who would stand before it? Who has come to confront me, that I should repay him? Under all the heavens, it belongs to me. “I will not keep quiet concerning its limbs or concerning the extent of its might and the gracefulness of its frame. Who can strip off its outer covering? Who can penetrate its double harness? Who can open the doors of its face? Its teeth all around are fearsome. Its back has scales of shields; it is shut up closely as with a seal. They are close to one another— even the air cannot come between them. They are joined one to another; they cling together and cannot be separated. “Its snorting flashes forth light, and its eyes are red like dawn. Torches go from its mouth; sparks of fire shoot out. Smoke comes from its nostrils as from a kettle boiling and burning bulrushes. Its breath kindles charcoal, and a flame comes from its mouth. “Strength abides in its neck, and dismay dances before it. Its flesh’s folds of skin cling together; it is cast on it—it will not be moved. Its heart is cast as stone; yes, it is cast as the lower millstone. When it raises itself, the mighty ones are terrified; they retreat because of its thrashing. Reaching it with the sword does not avail, nor with the spear, the dart, or the javelin. It regards iron as straw, bronze as rotten wood. An arrow will not make it flee; sling stones are turned to stubble for it. Clubs are regarded as stubble, and it laughs at the short sword’s rattle. “Its underparts are shards of a potsherd; it moves over mud like a threshing sledge. It makes the deep boil like a cooking pot; it makes the sea like a pot of ointment. Behind it, it leaves a glistening wake; one would think that the deep has gray hair. “On the ground it has no equal— a creature without fear. It observes all the lofty; it is king over all that are proud.”
God speaks to Job in a whirlwind. God reminds Job he is not the center of the universe. Job should not question God.
Job repents at the end of 42. HE admits that God is in Control in the mist of his suffering
Job 42:7–17 LEB
And then after Yahweh spoke these words to Job, Yahweh said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “My wrath has been kindled against you and against the two of your friends, for you have not spoken to me what is right as my servant Job has. So then, take for yourselves seven bulls and seven rams, and go to my servant Job and offer a burnt offering for yourselves. And my servant Job will pray for you, for I will certainly accept his prayer, so that it will not be done with you according to your folly, for you have not spoken to me what is right as my servant Job has.” So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went and did just as Yahweh had told them, and Yahweh accepted Job’s prayer. Then Yahweh returned Job’s fortune when he prayed to him on behalf of his friends. Thus Yahweh increased all that Job had twice as much as before. So all his brothers and all his sisters and all those who had known him before came to him, and they ate bread with him in his house and showed sympathy to him and comforted him for all the disaster that Yahweh had brought upon him. Then each one gave to him one piece of money, and each one gave to him one ornamental ring of gold. So Yahweh blessed Job’s latter days more than his beginning. Thus he had fourteen thousand sheep and goats and six thousand camels and a thousand pair of oxen and a thousand female donkeys. And he had seven sons and three daughters. And he called the name of the first Jemimah and the name of the second Keziah and the name of the third Qeren-Happuk. And beautiful women were not found in all the land like Job’s daughters, and their father gave to them an inheritance in the midst of their brothers. And Job lived after this one hundred and forty years, and he saw his sons and his grandsons for four generations. Then Job died old and full of days.
Job’s three friends are to offer sacrifice
Job gets twice as much as he had before


Speculative wisdom - Reflections of a philosopher


Trying to understand the meaning of humanity
Solomon - traditional Writer of the book. “School master”

Vanities of Vanities

Vanity = breath, vapor. Everything is dust in the wind
Writers opinion of world and life in it. Nothing last, nothing is of real value. Tried Work, Tried Wisdom, Tried Riches
Ecclesiastes 3 LEB
For everything there is an appointed time, a time for every matter under heaven: a time to bear and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to root up what is planted; a time to kill and a time to heal; a time to break down and a time to build up; a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance; a time to throw away stones and a time to gather stones; a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek and a time to lose; a time to keep and a time to throw away; a time to tear and a time to sew; a time to be silent and a time to speak; a time to love and a time to hate; a time for war and a time for peace. What does the worker gain in his toil? I have seen the business God gives to humans to preoccupy them. He has made everything suitable in its time. He also has put the past in their hearts, yet no one can grasp what God does from the beginning to the end. So I realized that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and enjoy themselves during their lives. And for anyone to eat and drink, that is, to enjoy the fruit of all his toil, this also is a gift of God. I know everything God does endures forever; nothing can be added to it, and nothing can be taken from it, for God so acts that humans might stand in awe before him. What is—it already was, and what will be—it already is, for God will do what he has done. I saw something else under the sun: instead of justice there was evil; instead of righteousness there was wickedness. So I said to myself, “God will surely judge the righteous and the wicked, for he has appointed a time of judgment for every deed and every work.” I said to myself concerning humans, “God sifts them in order to show them that they are like beasts.” For the fate of humans and the fate of the beast is the same. The death of the one is like the death of the other, for both are mortal. Man has no advantage over the beast, for both are fleeting. Both go to one place—both came from dust and both return to dust. For no one knows whether the spirit of a human ascends to heaven and whether the spirit of the beast descends to the ground! So I concluded that there is nothing better for a person than to enjoy the fruit of his labor, for this is his lot in life. For no one knows what will happen in the future.
Everything there is a season. Famous lines of Philosophy
Ecclesiastes 12:13 LEB
Now that all has been heard, here is the final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.

Song of Songs

Does not mention God anywhere
Jews not allowed to read until 12 years old
Collection of Love songs
Solomon is spoken of in the third person. Who is the Shepherd Lover?

Main interpretations


God is the Husband
Israel is the Wife
Christ is the Husband
The Church is the Wife


Proper dating and Marriage relationship
Erotic Poetry

Other interpretations

Cultic context
In comparison with pagan cultic practices
Wedding Cycle (similar to Syrian wedding songs)
As a drama
Either as a dramatic reading or actual staged drama
A collection of Love songs
Source of embarrassment for Judaism and the church (cf. John T. Bunn, “Song of Solomon,” BBC, pp.128ff.) because it has no mention of God, Highly erotic.
Almost did not make it into the canon. Hotly contested. Rabbinical school of Shammai opposed it inclusion in the canon. Rabbinical school of Hillel supported it inclusion (“liberal school”). Retained at the council of Jamnia.


1:2-2:7 – The Initial encounter of the two lovers
2:8 – 3:5 – The Struggle of the two lovers to be together
3:6-4:5 – The wedding procession and praise of the bride
4:6-5:16 – The Sexual union and praise of the groom
6:1-7:6 – The woman and the man take on royal identity
7:7 – 8:4 – The man and woman express their desire to be together
8:5-8:14 – A closing encounter between lovers
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