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Jeremiah

Rachel Weeps in Ramah: Of All the Patriarchs, God Listens Only to Her

Rachel weeps over her exiled descendants and God hears her plea (Jer 31:14–16). Expanding on this passage, the rabbis in Midrash Eichah Rabbah envision Jeremiah awakening the patriarchs and Moses to plead with God to have mercy on Israel. Upon their failure to move God, the matriarch Rachel intervenes successfully.

Prof.

Hagith Sivan

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Politics as Religion in Jeremiah

Dr.

Ari Mermelstein

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Turning Jeremiah's Land Deed Into an Oracle of Hope

Jeremiah 32 describes the prophet’s redemption of his uncle’s ancestral land. The scribal authors turned this transaction into an oracle. Eventually, the passage was expanded to include a prayer in which Jeremiah invokes the exodus from Egypt and the gift of the land. Taken together, the passage inspires hope for exilic Jews that God will redeem their land as well.

Dr

Mark Leuchter

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Jehoiachin's Exile and the Division of Judah

Eleven years before Judah was destroyed, King Jehoiachin and a select group of Judeans were sent into exile, and Zedekiah was left to rule Judah. The Babylonian and Judean populations split not only in terms of geography, but also in their views of whether Jehoiachin was the “once and future king” or whether God had utterly rejected him. 

Dr.

David Glatt-Gilad

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The "Man" in Lamentations

Unlike the other four chapters where the author speaks for the community, the third chapter of Lamentations is written as an individual lament. The chapter begins with “I am the man who has known affliction,” but who is he?

Prof.

Jacob Klein

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Deutero-Isaiah Reworks Past Prophecies to Comfort Israel

The Jewish practice of studying older texts and composing new ones based on them goes all the way back to the Bible itself. The haftarot from the second part of the Book of Isaiah that we read for the next seven shabbatot are an outstanding example of this practice.

Prof.

Benjamin D. Sommer

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The Bible's Evolving Effort to Humanize Debt Slavery

. . . and the Challenges of Putting it into Practice.

Prof.

Marvin A. Sweeney

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Jeremiah's Teaching of the Trees

The verdant tree and the desert shrub: Jeremiah’s wisdom psalm (17:5-8) uses this arboreal simile in poetic parallelism to offer a poignant message: A person who trusts in God will still confront challenges.

Prof. Rabbi

Andrea L. Weiss

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