Prophets are the messengers of God, sent to cast special messages pertaining the His will on the people (Collins, 2016). God chose Israel as His tribe and constantly used prophets, by inspiring His messages in them to pronounce His will the same way as Assyria, named as the ancient Near East. Both prophesies display a similarity, by recognizing the roles of sovereign beings who directly control what prophesy is delivered to the people. This paper examines the similarities evident in both prophesies, bringing to light when, and under what circumstances certain prophesies were delivered.
One similarity is that, in both prophetism, there is a call to recognize and praise the God/ gods in Israel and Assyria. In the pre-exilic period, Isaiah called unto the Israelites to praise the Name of God and not forget where he had delivered them from. Mari prophetic texts invoke a call to the people to worship god Bel and sixty other gods (Frijhoff, 2015). In both times too, prophets gave prophesy concerning what was to happen in the future. According to Isaiah 115, the prophet pronounces an apocalyptic judgment of God to the whole world. He forms part of the classical prophets, after the 19th century, evidenced by the name of his work and prophesy he delivered. This was meant as a signal for the people to change their ways, during the exilic and post-exilic period.
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In what seemed like a call for the people of the land to adopt good ways, Isaiah serves to destabilize the ways of the people, and the earthly happiness they had embraced. During the pre-exilic and post-exilic periods, God expressed His will by sending prophets to pronounce judgment, meant at streamlining the ways of the Israelites. Both prophecies invoke judgment and comfort for the people of both lands. (Collins, 2016). The Supreme Being used prophets at both lands to deliver messages of coming judgment, and hope that the highest would not abandon His people. Stressed in prophecies too, is the need to lay trust in God in Israel and the gods in neo- Assyria (Frijhoff, 2015).
In addition to that, People in both prophecies are viewed as dynamic beings but the supreme beings as being neutral and always helpful and powerful. In defining the history of Israel religion and welfare, it proves problematic and a bit intriguing. This is evidenced by the many false prophets arising among the people of the land, and religion which goes against instructions offered by the Pentateuch books (Collins, 2016). Religion seems numerous, with most false prophets claiming to facilitate communication between the living and the dead, a factor that complicates religion in ancient Israel altogether. Evidently, there were many prophets in both chronological times. Prophets in both acted as the eye of the church and communication channel between both realms. Further probing proves how frustrating it was for some prophets who were rejected in ancient Israel.
- Collins, J. J. (2016). The apocalyptic imagination: An introduction to Jewish apocalyptic literature. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing.
- Frijhoff, W. (2015). An Early Modern Young Prophet: The Heavenly Messages of Evert Willemsz Bogaert and their Recognition. In Prophecy and Prophets in Stories: Papers Read at the Fifth Meeting of the Edinburgh Prophecy Network, Utrecht, October 2013. BRILL.