March 2-8: Prophecy
Prophets! Prophecy! 8th-century prophets in Israel and Judah. Institutional settings and functions of prophecy in the ancient Near East. Here is a beginning list of “Big Ideas and Essential Questions” relating to prophecy and the Latter Prophets.
Read Bandstra’s Prologue to the Prophets. Also read his Chapter 10 “Kings and Prophets 2: The Assyrian Crisis”. Or, in your Introduction of choice, read on Prophecy, and on the 8th-century prophets (Amos, Hosea, Isaiah of Jerusalem, Micah).
- Herbert B. Huffmon, “What Was a Prophet?”
- Walter J. Houston, “Social Justice and the Prophets”
- H.G.M. Williamson, “How Many Isaiahs Were There?”
- For this Unit’s three weeks of Activities (below), you will need to have read Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, addressed to eight clergymen who had urged him in an open letter to withdraw support from civil rights demonstrations in Burmingham.
View or listen to the two-part lecture, “Prophecy”:
“Make” of the Week
Pick one of the following options for this week’s “make,” sharing it on your blog, remembering to tag your post with our tag, “ootle16.” If you would rather do your “make” as a voice-recorded mp3 file or a YouTube video, just be sure to create a properly-tagged blog post that hosts or links to your presentation. (Garrett students: Remember that your work is assessed according to the course rubric. You may need to add analysis or other elements that will allow you to include each element of the rubric. Remember too that you must have commented, thoughtfully and substantively, to at least three  other OOTLE-ers on either Daniel/Apocalyptic or Prophets by Sunday evening.)
Make Option 01: (Exercise 87 in Stanley.) Read Amos 2:6-16; 5:10-17; 6:1-8; 8:4-9:4. In about 750-1000 words, what does Amos say is wrong with Israelite society? What will happen to the people of Israel if they don’t change their ways? Is there anything that they can do to avoid this fate?
Make Option 02: (Exercise 89 in Stanley.) Read Hosea 4:1-14; 8:1-14; 10:1-8; 13:1-8. In about 750-1000 words, what does Hosea say is wrong with Israel? How does his picture compare with that of Amos?
Make Option 03: (Exercise 91 in Stanley.) Read Isaiah 1:1-31; 5:1-30; 10:1-27; 28:1-22. In about 750-1000 words, how does Isaiah’s message compare with that of Amos and Hosea?
Activity of the Week: Annotate MLK’s “Letter,” analyzing it as “Prophecy”
For the three weeks of the Latter Prophets, we are joing in a shared annotation of Dr. Martin Luther King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail.”
This week: Using our course materials as a resource regarding the genres and activities typical of ancient Near Eastern and biblical prophecy, analyze Dr. King’s letter as prophecy in that sense. How does its form and content, historical setting and function “stack up” as prophecy (again in the senses of that word used in academic study of the Hebrew Bible)? How not? Annotate profligately! Where you are unsure of your observations, simply indicate this in your annotations. But engage course materials rigorously. Cite, cite, cite.
We will do our analysis on this shared Google Doc. As a group, you will decide how to order and organize analysis. You may use the Comments feature, interlinear additions (with or without hyperlinks), and anything else you think works well. Just be sure we can distinguish the original text from your annotations. And, be aware that dependence upon “color coding” can make your work unavailable to the visually or cognitively impaired. Keep it simple.
During the second week, we will engage and challenge one another on our annotations, on accuracy and in terms of how closely we engage course materials and methods. During the third week, we will collaborate on a few paragraphs summarizing our observations.
Google Hangout of the Week: "Office Hours" on Prophecy and 8th-century Prophets!
On Thursday, March 3, 10:00-11:00am Central Time, all learners are welcome to join me for an "On Air" live Google Hangout. We will talk about Prophecy and the 8th-century prophets (or we may not), and what sorts of discoveries we're making (or not) about the Hebrew Bible and its study at this point in the course.
I am emailing invitations Tuesday morning and again when the Hangout begins. To join the Hangout: You must click the link that's on your email invitation, or find the invitation in the "Notifications" area of your own Google pages. Clicking the link in the previous paragraph won't join you to the Hangout: that link is for observers. Also, don't invite me or others to a video call. Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks!
During the Hangout, follow the hashtag #ootle16, asking us questions, making comments, and discussing the conversation among yourselves.