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The Redactional Formation Of Isaiah 20

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Chapter Summary

This chapter considers the internal formation of Isa 20:1-6. It posits the development of Isa 20 in two stages, involving three main units of material. The first stage involves joining together a pre-existing narrative in verses 1-4 with the composition of verse 5, while verse 6 represents a second stage of expansion. Each of these literary pieces (verses 1-4, 5, 6) are examined separately with particular interest in the influences that have led to their development. The chapter concludes that Isa 20:1-5 has been supplied in response to Zedekiah's interest in Egyptian assistance prior to the fall of Jerusalem. Although these verses do not make explicit reference to the matter, the books of Jeremiah and Ezekiel unequivocally condemn Zedekiah's rebellion against Nebuchadnezzar, and a few non-biblical texts support the likelihood of diplomatic relations between Judah and Egypt during this time.

Keywords: Egypt; Isa 20:1-6; Jeremiah; Jerusalem; Judah; Zedekiah



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