Introduction to Isaiah: This is the first of the prophetic books. Introduction in CEB makes this book sound pretty interesting. I want to get into the text, but I need to definitely reread this later. In fact, I think that once I’m done and start to explore writing a book, I will come back to all of the introductions to each individual book, the introductions to different sections in the Bible, and the additional essays from each Bible. And I’ll read this source (here).
Introduction to Song of Songs: I’m actually kind of excited about reading this book. Curious too. Several people have described this book as sexual and erotic. Should be interesting.
I do find it interesting that the Hebrew title of the book is Song of Songs and yet many people call it Song of Solomon because several people attribute the book to Solomon. However there is some debate on that. Always fun to get that information.
Job 22: Third cycle begins. This time, only Eliphaz and Bildad speak followed by Job’s responses. Here we see Eliphaz speak for a third time.
Introduction to the Poetical and Wisdom Books: The NRSV has a full introduction to the 5 books classified in the Poetical and Wisdom Books. There’s a lot in there, especially about Biblical poetry. I just want to put this quote here and move on to Job:
Introduction to Esther: The introduction is interesting. I really enjoy reading two different versions of the bible. I learn something from each one and I feel I’m getting a more complete picture. For example, the intro in the CEB study bible identifies three themes: importance of proportion, the challenge of living a faithful life in an unfaithful world, and the importance of the written word (p. 765 OT – 766 OT). Among many interesting things in the NRSV version is this little gem: “Furthermore, both Esther and Song of Solomon celebrate, albeit in different contexts, the power of feminine sexuality” (p. 707). As I’ve said many times, it’s interesting how many of these readings are timely. In this situation, I’m starting this book on the same day as the women’s march (1/20/18). Here’s another interesting statement: “The story’s purpose is to entertain, but more importantly to demonstrate the inevitability of retributive justice and, paradoxically, the need for oppressed minorities to act shrewdly and boldly for that justice to prevail” (p. 708). We live in a time where the oppression of minorities is becoming even more prominent. This should be an interesting read.
2 Kings 10: Jehu continues his violent ways and kills Ahab’s family, cementing his rule over Israel. He then kills Baal worshippers, this eliminating Baal from Israel. However, he continues in evil ways and continues to sin against God. We continue to see the downfall of Israel.
1 Kings 13: This is a really strange story about Jeroboam and a man of God. We are never told his name. The man of God successfully predicts something in front of Jeroboam almost in what seemed to be an attempt to make him leave his evil ways. The man of God then leaves and refuses to eat or drink with Jeroboam because God explicitly told him not to. He then leaves town and is approached by another prophet who tricks him into returning to his home and eating and drinking. God gets angry and a lion kills the man of God on his way back home. The old prophet gets his body and buries him in his own grave and mourns his death.