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Topics in Early Jewish History: Prophecy and Divination in Early Jewish and Christian Texts

For long it has been accepted that the phenomenon of prophecy ceased after prophets Zechariah, Haggai, and Malachi. The early rabbis explain that after their time the Holy Spirit left Israel. While classical prophecy (i.e., consulting the divine will as it is depicted in the Hebrew Bible) may have ended, people were still interested in accessing divine knowledge and preparing themselves for the future. Therefore, a growing number of scholars now agree that while there the texts do not attest to a new prophet, the phenomenon continued. In this seminar we will analyze how prophecy is depicted in the Jewish and Christian texts of the Second Temple period and the first centuries CE. How does prophecy shift after the time of the prophets? What other methods than prophecy were available for people who wanted to consult the divine will?

RELIGST 746

Topics in Early Jewish History: Prophecy and Divination in Early Jewish and Christian Texts

Unit(s): 3.0 Level(s): Graduate Term(s): Winter Offered?: Yes Language?: No

For long it has been accepted that the phenomenon of prophecy ceased after prophets Zechariah, Haggai, and Malachi. The early rabbis explain that after their time the Holy Spirit left Israel. While classical prophecy (i.e., consulting the divine will as it is depicted in the Hebrew Bible) may have ended, people were still interested in accessing divine knowledge and preparing themselves for the future. Therefore, a growing number of scholars now agree that while there the texts do not attest to a new prophet, the phenomenon continued. In this seminar we will analyze how prophecy is depicted in the Jewish and Christian texts of the Second Temple period and the first centuries CE. How does prophecy shift after the time of the prophets? What other methods than prophecy were available for people who wanted to consult the divine will?


Hanna Tervanotko

Assistant Professor

Hanna Tervanotko