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Text in ContextEssays by Members of the Society for Old Testament
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A. D. H. Mayes

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780198263913

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2004

DOI: 10.1093/0198263910.001.0001

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Prophecy and the Prophetic Books

Prophecy and the Prophetic Books

(p.323) 12 Prophecy and the Prophetic Books
Text in Context

J. Blenkinsopp

Oxford University Press

This is the second of six chapters on the Old Testament and its authors. It discusses prophecy and the prophetic books of the Old Testament starting by pointing out that not much has been added to the non‐biblical data bearing on the phenomenon of prophecy in ancient Israel since the 1979 study of the prophetic literature by W. McKane. The aspects of the subject addressed in Sect. I include the danger of form‐critical positivism and the problematic nature of the passage from text to prophetic realia (McKane), B. S. Child's advocacy of interpretation in the context of canon, reader response theory and prophetic terminology. Section II looks at the social‐scientific approach to prophecy, and Sect. III looks at the process by which prophetic books and the prophetic corpus as a whole reached the form in which they are now available. Section IV discusses the early Second Temple period, and the last section of the chapter looks at one of the most contentious issues in the study of the prophetic texts—the relation between prophecy and law.

Keywords:   canon, B. S. Child, development, form‐critical positivism, interpretation, law, McKane, Old Testament, prophecy, prophecy versus law, prophetic books, prophetic realia, prophetic terminology, reader response theory, Second Temple period, social‐scientific approach, terminology

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