The Prophet Isaiah

Presented by Mary Patricia Storms
Fall 2013
Our Lady of Presentation Parish
A trio of writers
□ The Book of Isaiah is attributed to three
authors:
 an 8th century prophet named Isaiah,
son of Amoz(...
Timeline
□ Written between the eighth and sixth
centuries BC
Some background
□ Isaiah forms the idea that Jerusalem has a
future with God, a city that will be blessed
with justice and...
Structure
□ Isaiah 1–39
□ Indictment of Israel and Judah (1:1–5:30)
□ The Book of Emmanuel (6:1–12:6)
□ Oracles against th...
Structure
□ Isaiah 40–55
□ The Lord’s Glory in Israel’s Liberation (40:1–
48:22)
□ Expiation of Sin, Spiritual Liberation ...
Themes
□ Isaiah I: condemns political, social,
economic structures that create
classes of excessive wealth and
extreme pov...
Themes
□ Isaiah 2: there is a future for Jerusalem
despite the destruction caused by the
Babylonians
□ Temple and liturgy ...
Themes
□ Isaiah 3: There is hope for those
disillusioned by the lack of progress for
the society of Jerusalem.
□ A society...
Motifs
□ God is the Holy One of Israel
□ The Lord is unlike any other god
□ The Lord does not act as Jerusalem
expects
□ G...
Motifs
□ Jerusalem/Zion
□ The Lord demands justice; Jerusalem crushes the
poor
□ God is holy; Jerusalem looks for power th...
Isaiah’s Prophecies
□ Jewish Reader
□ Looking for the final
redemption of
Jerusalem
□ Appearance of
Messiah who will
resto...
Jerusalem’s Future
• 1:1-12:6: Jerusalem’s infidelity and a
prayer for the future restoration.
• The name “Isaiah” means “...
Anarchy, chaos and judgment
□ Jerusalem will collapse because of her
failure to create a just society
□ God will eliminate...
Song of the Vineyard (5)
□ The vineyard produces sour grapes
despite the owner’s care; the owner
asks the people for advic...
The Prophet’s Call (6)
□ Turning point in history – Uzziah’s reign is
over
□ Call takes place in temple, in the
presence o...
Emmanuel prophecies
□ Ahaz’s political policies will not result in
lasting peace and stability
□ Judah needs to fear God,
...
The shoot of Jesse (11)
□ Idealistic view
□ Coming of king will be accompanied by
taming of wild animals
□ Israel and Juda...
Oracles
□
□
□
□
□
□
□
□
□
□

Babylon
Assyria
Philista
Moab
Damascus
Ethiopia
Egypt
Dumah
Arabia
Whole earth

□ Other gods
...
Final Oracle against Edom
□ God can spare no energy or resource
when battling evil – on earth or in
heavens
□ People of Ju...
Radical Shift (35)
□ Zion’s Joy and Glory
□ Transformation of desert, etc.
□ God’s plans for Zion transcend current
histor...
Threat to Jerusalem
Retelling of information in 2 Kings during
the reign of Hezekiah
 Egypt is unreliable ally
 Assyrian...
Saving Jerusalem (37)
and her king (38)

□ Narrow escape from Assyrians; people
do not believe God will allow
Jerusalem to...
Liberation (40)
□ Voice of hope
□ Handel’s Messiah…
□ Consequences of justice
□ Jerusalem/Zion is an abandoned and
barren ...
Isaiah (40)
□ Words of the rulers of the city:
□ What must happen for city to be restored:
□ Level pathways
□ Life-giving ...
Who is the Lord?
□ Series of rhetorical questions
□ Part One: God is Creator of all the
universe
□ Part 2: parodies religi...
Servant Songs
□ 42; 49 & 50
□ John the Baptist
□ Simeon’s canticle
□ Refer to Jesus as this servant.
Metaphors for the Lord
□ Mighty Warrior
□ Woman in labor
□ Shepherd
□ Isaiah is not hesitant to use feminine
metaphors for...
Sins (44)
□ God has no choice but to abandon
Israel because of their history of
sinfulness.
□ Still, God holds Israel clos...
Cyrus of Persia
□ Under Cyrus, Jerusalem will be
restored.
□ God is not restoring the monarchy;
□ God is doing something e...
The Suffering Servant (52-53)
□ The servant will be exalted after total
humiliation.
□ Suffering is not only caused by
sin...
New Jerusalem
□ Because of the altered status as a
nation, religious identity is very
important.
□ Sabbath observance
□ Ci...
Justice
□ God will establish justice when Judah
demonstrates she is ready to live justly
and stop oppressing the poor.
□ G...
□ A lament: Can you hold back, Lord,
after all this? Can you remain silent
and afflict us so severely?

□ Those who remain...
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The prophet isaiah

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The prophet isaiah

  1. 1. The Prophet Isaiah Presented by Mary Patricia Storms Fall 2013 Our Lady of Presentation Parish
  2. 2. A trio of writers □ The Book of Isaiah is attributed to three authors:  an 8th century prophet named Isaiah, son of Amoz(Chapters 1-35) An disciple of the prophet who lived during the Exile, called Second Isaiah (Chapters 40-55) A post-exilic writer called Third Isaiah (Chapters 56-66)
  3. 3. Timeline □ Written between the eighth and sixth centuries BC
  4. 4. Some background □ Isaiah forms the idea that Jerusalem has a future with God, a city that will be blessed with justice and peace □ Often read in synagogue to parallel the Torah □ New Testament citations of Isaiah are second only to the Psalms. □ Lumen Gentium cites Isaiah on peace and justice and uses the images of Light.
  5. 5. Structure □ Isaiah 1–39 □ Indictment of Israel and Judah (1:1–5:30) □ The Book of Emmanuel (6:1–12:6) □ Oracles against the Foreign Nations (13:1– 23:18) □ Apocalypse of Isaiah (24:1–27:13) □ The Lord Alone, Israel’s and Judah’s Salvation (28:1–33:24) □ The Lord, Zion’s Avenger (34:1–35:10) □ Historical Appendix (36:1–39:8)
  6. 6. Structure □ Isaiah 40–55 □ The Lord’s Glory in Israel’s Liberation (40:1– 48:22) □ Expiation of Sin, Spiritual Liberation of Israel (49:1–55:13) □ Isaiah 56–66
  7. 7. Themes □ Isaiah I: condemns political, social, economic structures that create classes of excessive wealth and extreme poverty □ Temple and liturgy protected those who oppressed the poor instead of working for justice.
  8. 8. Themes □ Isaiah 2: there is a future for Jerusalem despite the destruction caused by the Babylonians □ Temple and liturgy protected those who oppressed the poor instead of working for justice.
  9. 9. Themes □ Isaiah 3: There is hope for those disillusioned by the lack of progress for the society of Jerusalem. □ A society of peace and justice is possible when the people cooperate with God’s plans.
  10. 10. Motifs □ God is the Holy One of Israel □ The Lord is unlike any other god □ The Lord does not act as Jerusalem expects □ God is one; God is unique □ The word “redeemer” is connected with God.
  11. 11. Motifs □ Jerusalem/Zion □ The Lord demands justice; Jerusalem crushes the poor □ God is holy; Jerusalem looks for power through alliances with other nations and their gods □ God says Jerusalem’s sins are paid for; Jerusalem does not believe □ God is always faithful to Jerusalem and assures a glorious future.
  12. 12. Isaiah’s Prophecies □ Jewish Reader □ Looking for the final redemption of Jerusalem □ Appearance of Messiah who will restore Jerusalem’s glory □ Christian Reader □ Looking for the coming of the new and eternal Jerusalem
  13. 13. Jerusalem’s Future • 1:1-12:6: Jerusalem’s infidelity and a prayer for the future restoration. • The name “Isaiah” means “God saves” • Israel has been unfaithful, but God has not • Worship without justice is empty ritual • Apocalyptic worldview: sin can be expiated by repentance; choose life, not death.
  14. 14. Anarchy, chaos and judgment □ Jerusalem will collapse because of her failure to create a just society □ God will eliminate those who create corruption but will save those who are just. □ The rich will lose everything. □ God will be present
  15. 15. Song of the Vineyard (5) □ The vineyard produces sour grapes despite the owner’s care; the owner asks the people for advice. □ Those who are wealthy will suffer; justice will be restored by God.
  16. 16. The Prophet’s Call (6) □ Turning point in history – Uzziah’s reign is over □ Call takes place in temple, in the presence of the seraphim (snakes or angels? – either way, terrifying) □ Isaiah’s message will be on deaf ears
  17. 17. Emmanuel prophecies □ Ahaz’s political policies will not result in lasting peace and stability □ Judah needs to fear God, not other nations □ God is the rock of salvation □ Isaiah’s words are to be preserved □ Ode to Israel
  18. 18. The shoot of Jesse (11) □ Idealistic view □ Coming of king will be accompanied by taming of wild animals □ Israel and Judah will be re-united under a king from the family of David □ The remnants of Israel and Judah will be gathered.
  19. 19. Oracles □ □ □ □ □ □ □ □ □ □ Babylon Assyria Philista Moab Damascus Ethiopia Egypt Dumah Arabia Whole earth □ Other gods □ Other nations □ Second against Babylon □ Edom □ Jerusalem □ Shebna/Eliakim (royal counselors) □ Tyre and Sidon (ports)
  20. 20. Final Oracle against Edom □ God can spare no energy or resource when battling evil – on earth or in heavens □ People of Judah hated people of Edom
  21. 21. Radical Shift (35) □ Zion’s Joy and Glory □ Transformation of desert, etc. □ God’s plans for Zion transcend current history. □ Providing water for Israel is common biblical image linked to salvation □ Lame will walk, Blind will see
  22. 22. Threat to Jerusalem Retelling of information in 2 Kings during the reign of Hezekiah  Egypt is unreliable ally  Assyrians say they are in charge of God bc they took Jerusalem  Hopelessness of Jerusalem’s situation
  23. 23. Saving Jerusalem (37) and her king (38) □ Narrow escape from Assyrians; people do not believe God will allow Jerusalem to fall…ever. □ Hezekiah is spared from a serious illness after an appeal to God (for 15 more years.) □ Eventually, Hezekiah will die and Jerusalem will fall.
  24. 24. Liberation (40) □ Voice of hope □ Handel’s Messiah… □ Consequences of justice □ Jerusalem/Zion is an abandoned and barren wife who is restored to her husband and fertility. □
  25. 25. Isaiah (40) □ Words of the rulers of the city: □ What must happen for city to be restored: □ Level pathways □ Life-giving desert □ Exiles will be led by God back to Jerusalem □ God, who can change the course of history, is concerned with the individual lives of exiles
  26. 26. Who is the Lord? □ Series of rhetorical questions □ Part One: God is Creator of all the universe □ Part 2: parodies religious beliefs of the nations. □ All nations will stand in judgment □ No longer will a monarchy rule; all the people as a whole are responsible for justice.
  27. 27. Servant Songs □ 42; 49 & 50 □ John the Baptist □ Simeon’s canticle □ Refer to Jesus as this servant.
  28. 28. Metaphors for the Lord □ Mighty Warrior □ Woman in labor □ Shepherd □ Isaiah is not hesitant to use feminine metaphors for God
  29. 29. Sins (44) □ God has no choice but to abandon Israel because of their history of sinfulness. □ Still, God holds Israel close. □ God is shown through real people, not in statues, idols or other images like the gods of the nations.
  30. 30. Cyrus of Persia □ Under Cyrus, Jerusalem will be restored. □ God is not restoring the monarchy; □ God is doing something entirely new. □ The nations will join Judah in recognizing God as king. □ Babylon will not survive
  31. 31. The Suffering Servant (52-53) □ The servant will be exalted after total humiliation. □ Suffering is not only caused by sinfulness, but sometimes is needed to advance God’s work in the world.
  32. 32. New Jerusalem □ Because of the altered status as a nation, religious identity is very important. □ Sabbath observance □ Circumcision □ Dietary laws □ All nation are called: observe the laws
  33. 33. Justice □ God will establish justice when Judah demonstrates she is ready to live justly and stop oppressing the poor. □ God always acts for the oppressed □ When Judah is ready, God will take her as his bride and queen.
  34. 34. □ A lament: Can you hold back, Lord, after all this? Can you remain silent and afflict us so severely? □ Those who remain obstinate will be treated horridly.

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