To paraphrase the renowned Jewish scholar, A. J. Heschel, this class will be about some of the most disturbing people who have ever lived, whose inspiration brought the Bible into being, whose image is our refuge in distress and whose voice and vision sustain our faith. The acts and words of Elijah, Amos, Isaiah, Jeremiah and the other Hebrew prophets will be our study. Thomas L. Leclerc’s Introduction to the Prophets: Their Stories, Sayings and Scrolls (Paulist Press 2007) will be our textbook and guide in reading the Biblical books. We are familiar with some of the prophet’s words from readings in worship, but what does it mean to be a prophet of God? The prophet is an individual who says No to his society, and may sound shrill and unbalanced in his denunciations. As a witness, the prophet is more than a messenger—his task is to deliver the word, and to bear testimony that the word is divine. Although the prophet begins with a message of doom, he concludes with a message of hope and redemption.
The class will be taught by Kristine Wallace, retired Classics professor at Rice University and student of Prof. Matthias Henze.