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Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets U Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets U Origins of the Prophets and Prophecy U Marks of the Prophets U Major Prophets U Minor Prophets

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets and Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets and Prophecy 1. The prophet is a special kind of messenger from God 2. Prophets were present through the early and late stages of the Old Testament 3. Moses was God’s first messenger 4. Prophecy became a literary movement as the sayings of selected prophets were gathered and kept 5. “Former prophets” appeared in earlier times while the “latter prophets” later

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Major Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Major Prophets versus Minor Prophets The difference is related to the length of the book and not the importance of the prophet or his message Major prophets Minor prophets Hosea Isaiah Jeremiah Joel Zechariah. Haggai Micah Zephaniah Nahum Habakkuk Ezekiel Obadiah Amos Jonah Malachi

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Prophecy Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Prophecy 1. Prophets received a call from God and felt compelled to leave their former way of life to follow it 2. Ways they received the call to prophecy: voices, dreams, visions, inspiration to share God’s message 3. They often spoke unpopular messages with the rulers 4. In general, the message of the prophets was meant to convert their listeners to God

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Call Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Call Narratives of Moses, Isaiah, and Jeremiah 1. The setting is one of mystery / holiness 2. God initiates the call. 3. The person resists. 5. God sends the person on a mission. 4. God reassures the person.

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Marks Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Marks of Prophecy 1. Prophets inherited the role of Moses – They usually based their criticism of Israel on the statutes of Moses 2. Prophets were “spiritual warriors” – During the time of the kings, they were “demilitarized judges” or “specially selected messengers of God” 3. Prophets were social revolutionaries – Their religious concern (to serve YHWH and no other gods) was always accompanied by

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Marks Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets Marks of Prophecy 4. Prophets were messengers of God – The prophets almost always spoke in the first person, as if God were speaking, by the use of the “messenger formula”

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Book of Isaiah 1. Isaiah is quoted in the New Testament more than any other prophetic book 2. It represents the work of more than one writer, from more than one time: (a) Jer 1– 39: details the ministry of the prophet in Jerusalem (b) Jer 40– 55: written by an anonymous prophet living during the Babylonian exile; it includes four Servant Songs fulfilled in Christ

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Book of Jeremiah 1. Jeremiah remained in Jerusalem through all the events of the siege and exile of the people 2. He preached that Judah was paying a price for its infidelity and the best course of action would be to submit to Babylon so Jerusalem could escape destruction 3. In his Temple Sermon he warns that those who oppress refugees, orphans, or widows to reform their evil ways

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Book of Ezekiel 1. Ezekiel was deported with the first group of exiles in 597 and began his prophecy in Babylon 2. He experienced a series of bizarre visions and actions: (a) Ez 1 -24 – warns of Jerusalem’s impending doom (b) Ez 33 -48 – a resurrection of Jerusalem after the exile 4. His visions and actions:

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Book of Daniel 1. Although Daniel did not receive the traditional call by God to preach, the Catholic Old Testament includes it with the prophetic books 2. It has three main divisions which include prophecy, history, and apocalyptic literature 3. Apocalyptic literature: (a) Arose in circumstances of Jewish oppression (b) This highly symbolic writing protected the authors as well as the readers from persecution (c) Apocalyptic writing also found in sections of Ezekiel and Zechariah

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Minor Prophets 1. The Book of Hosea – Hosea’s controversial marriage symbolizes God’s relationship with Israel; his message is the faithfulness and love of God for his people 2. The Book of Joel – Joel is filled with apocalyptic images and describes the “day of the Lord” which would mark a new beginning when God will pour out his spirit on all humanity 3. The Book of Amos – Amos preached a strong message of social justice, speaking against many of the

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Minor Prophets 4. The Book of Obadiah – Obadiah contains a harsh denunciation of the Edomites who had participated in the sack of Jerusalem, and prophesies their destruction and Judah’s restoration 5. The Book of Jonah – A parable about God’s compassion on all people, even non-Jews, in which Jonah represents Israel who sinfully rejected God’s call and listened to their own voices 6. The Book of Micah – Micah warned the people that if they did not return to the Lord and observe the Law, they would be

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Minor Prophets 7. The Book of Nahum – Nahum depicts YHWH as both an avenger who protects his people from their enemies, but also as merciful, who orders the world in his moral goodness 8. The Book of Habakkuk – Habakkuk warned of Judah’s capture by the Babylonians and provided a lyrical reminder of Israel’s past 9. The Book of Zephaniah – Zephaniah’s prophesied a “day of the Lord” that would bring doom, yet in spite of the infidelities, God’s mercy would spare a holy remnant

Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Sacred Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word Part 1 E The Prophets The Minor Prophets 10. The Book of Haggai – Haggai sought to encourage the Jews to complete the rebuilding of the Temple 11. The Book of Zechariah – Zechariah too encouraged the completion of the Temple and predicted a messianic age to come 12. The Book of Malachi – The predominant theme is fidelity to God’s covenant and a prophecy about the coming messenger who would