TheBabylon crisis is a period during which the Kingdom of Judah wascaptive in Babylonia under the rule of Nebuchadnezzar. The Jewishpeople underwent significant challenges such as slavery andworshipping of idols. The people of Judah were in need of assistanceand cried out to the Lord for mercy. McEntire’s “A Chorus ofProphetic Voices” employs an integrative mechanism that weavesliterary-canonical and historical-critical techniques to demonstratethe past events.
Theprophetic accounts of the Hebrew Bible presented by McEntire compriseof four key collections, that is, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Isaiah, and thetwelve prophets1.All these scrolls are utilized to explore the response to the threemost significant crises in the history of the Israelites i.e. theAssyrian, Babylon, and the destruction of Jerusalem crises. It alsoentails the restoration period when Jerusalem was rebuilt, and theIsraelites came back from bondage. As such, this paper will dwell onJeremiah’s role and the response towards the Babylon crisis.
Jeremiah’smessages gave Israelites the basis for surviving the Babyloniancrisis. His main part was to appeal to the Jews not to be misled bythe false prophets. In his message to the exiles, he implored theIsraelites to hold onto their faith and stop doing evil, and it wouldset them free2.By worshipping idols and doing other evils, the Jews were onlyhurting themselves. Sin was separating them from God. As entailed inJeremiah 25, when the Jews seized to listen to The Lord, He let KingNebuchadnezzar destroy Jerusalem and take them into captivity.Jeremiah’s message was, therefore, founded on encouraging the Jewsto turn to God and follow His will and they would be saved. Accordingto Brueggemann, the Prophets had a way of evoking consciousness whileaddressing the people. In that regard, Jeremiah enabled the Jews tocomprehend their sins and ask for forgiveness3.
Inthe modern world, poverty is a growing illness. The percentage ofpoor people far outweighs the wealthy personalities. Though the normemanates from numerous reasons, sin is the most prominent one. Peoplehave stopped worshipping the true God and instead replaced Him withidols. The hunger for material gain has dwarfed the thirstiness forGod’s word. Therefore, people are never satisfied with what theyhave. In the continued pursuit of material gain, people deemthemselves poor even if they have the essential commodities. As such,Jeremiah would appeal to these people to stop whining about theirpoverty status and turn to the Lord for sanctification. It is betterto be poor regarding material gain but not spiritual poverty. Byadhering to Jeremiah’s message, people will stop deeming themselvesas poor.
Inconclusion, McEntire strives to comprehend the entire visionarymessages from the different prophets. He explains that althoughEzekiel and Jeremiah regularly blamed the Judeans for their exile andsuffering during the crisis of Babylon, “the two prophets oftenworry over these occasions, weighing levels of concern andpunishment, while depicting the dismay of the incursion in graphicmeans.” The prophets themselves suffered as a result of theirfaithfulness to God. In McEntire’s perception, “Through the laborof grief, they change the personality of the aggrieved, from theguilt-ridden individual punishable by The Lord to faithful characterssuffering due to their loyalty to God4.As such, Jeremiah strived to sway the Jews from their spiritualpoverty. He knew by accepting the will of God the Jews would besaved from servitude. Even the contemporary world, people areentangled in poverty primarily due to the lack of the God’s word.
Brueggemann, alter. The Prophetic Imagination. Fortress Press, 2001.
McEntire, Mark Harold. A Chorus of Prophetic Voices: Introducing the Prophetic Literature of Ancient Israel. Westminister John Knox Press, 2015.
Mindel, Nissan. "Jeremiah`s Message To The Exiles." 2016. http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/112493/jewish/Jeremiahs-Message-To-The-Exiles.htm (accessed November 9, 2016).
1 McEntire, Mark Harold. A Chorus of Prophetic Voices: Introducing the Prophetic Literature of Ancient Israel . Westminister John Knox Press, 2015.
2 Mindel, Nissan. "Jeremiah`s Message To The Exiles." 2016. http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/112493/jewish/Jeremiahs-Message-To-The-Exiles.htm (accessed November 9, 2016).
3 Brueggemann, alter. The Prophetic Imagination. Fortress Press, 2001.
4 McEntire, Mark Harold. A Chorus of Prophetic Voices: Introducing the Prophetic Literature of Ancient Israel . Westminister John Knox Press, 2015.