Pre-exilic Sentence Examples
Although there is no psalm which can be shown with any probability to be pre-exilic, it is not impossible that there are some which date from as early a time as the age of Zerubbabel, by whose appointment national hopes were raised to so high a pitch.
The judgments predicted by the pre-exilic prophets had indeed been executed to the letter, but where were the promised glories of the renewed kingdom and Israel's unquestioned sovereignty over the nations of the earth ?
Thus the pre-exilic literature, as we now have it, has little to say about angels or about superhuman beings other than Yahweh and manifestations of Yahweh; the pre-exilic prophets hardly mention angels.
The Adam-story is plainly of foreign origin, and could not please the greater pre-exilic prophets.
They are to all appearance the work of a school of priests, who, after the destruction of the Temple in 586 B.C., began to write down and codify the ceremonial regulations of the pre-exilic times, combining them with an historical narrative extending from the Creation to the establishment of Israel in Canaan; and who completed their work during the century following the restoration in 537 B.C. The chief object of these sections is to describe in detail the leading institutions of the theocracy (Tabernacle, sacrifices, purifications, &c.), and to refer them to their traditional origin in the Mosaic age.Advertisement
Thus, though it is going too far to say that there are no pre-exilic psalms, the Psalter, as a whole, is the expression of the deeper spiritual feeling which marked the later stages of Israel's history.
The starting-point of this newer criticism of the prophets is the clearer practical recognition of the fact that all pre-exilic prophecy has come down to us in the works of post-exilic editors, and that for the old statement of the problem of the prophetic books - What prophecies or elements in Isaiah, Jeremiah and the rest are later than these prophets ?
In the pre-exilic prophets the judgment of God is "primarily on Israel, although it also embraces the nations"; during the Exile and at the Restoration the judgment is represented as falling on the nations while redemption is being wrought for God's people; after the Restoration the people of God is again threatened, but still the warning of judgment is mainly directed towards the nations and deliverance is promised to Israel.
It is, however, conventionally used as a name for the territory which, in the Old Testament, is claimed as the inheritance of the pre-exilic Hebrews; thus it may be said generally to denote the southern third of the province of Syria.
No mention is made of the Day of Atonement in the pre-exilic period, and it is a plausible conjecture that the present law arose from the desire to turn the spontaneous fasting of Neh.Advertisement
There has also to be considered whether the text of the poetical passages has not often become corrupt, not only from ordinary causes but through the misunderstanding and misreading of north Arabian names on the part of late scribes and editors, the danger to Judah from north Arabia being (it is held) not less in pre-exilic times than the danger from Assyria and Babylonia, so that references to north Arabia are only to be expected.
Esther is a modification of Ishtar, the name of the Babylonian goddess of fertility and of the planet Venus, whose myth must have been partially known to the Israelites even in pre-exilic times,' and after the fall of the state must have acquired a still stronger hold on Jewish exiles.
Indeed, as Marti points out (p. 259) the triple division of the book of Micah (i.-iii.; iv., v.; vi., vii.) corresponds with that of the book of Isaiah (i.-xxxix.; xl.-lv.; lvi.-lxvi.) in the character of the three divisions (judgment; coming restoration; prayer for help in adversity) respectively, and in the fact that the first alone gives us pre-exilic writing in the actual words of the prophet to whom the whole book is ascribed.
Before answering we must again point out (see also IsAIAH) that the records of the pre-exilic prophets came down in a fragmentary form, and that these fragments needed much supplementing to adapt them to the use of post-exilic readers.