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A Socio-Political Rhetoric Study of Hosea’s Marriage Metaphor

  • Korean Journal of Old Testament Studies
  • Abbr : KJOTS
  • 2018, 24(2), pp.62-92
  • DOI : 10.24333/jkots.2018.24.2.62
  • Publisher : Korean Society of Old Testament Studies
  • Research Area : Humanities > Christian Theology
  • Received : March 30, 2018
  • Accepted : April 28, 2018

kyung-Sik Park 1

1목원대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Scholars, who interpreted and understood the metaphors and proclamations in the book of Hosea as an accusation of Israel’s religious apostasy, have overlooked the socio-political intention of its author. Their arguments are based on inaccurate structural demarcations and biased redactional critical approaches, focusing on the separation of different textual layers. Scholars partly ignored the vassal relationship with Assyria during the 9th century BCE because the books of Kings do not indicate any texts that prove Israel’s alliance with Assyria during this period until Tiglath-Pileser III (745-727BCE). However, I argue that Israel was heavily involved with Assyria from Shalmaneser III (859-824BCE) through Tiglath-PileserIII. We have clear remains which indicate the vassal relationship with Assyria, espcially the Black Obelisk and the vassal list of Adad-Nirari III. The book of Hosea was written for the purpose of advocating Hosea’s socio-political viewpoint based on his understanding of northern Israel among the empires (Assyria and Egypt) and small states. Hosea’s proclamation is to point out that northern Israel has a political alliance with Assyria which means that they are trading with Assyria and Egypt. Hosea, of course, does not like this political relationship because Hosea believes that political relationship with Assyria is idolatry. In particular, the vassal treaty relationship with Assyria made by Jehu (842-815 BCE) is the main problem that Hosea strongly objects to. Therefore, the marriage metaphor needs to be understood with the marriage motif that includes a rhetorical approach to claim who is the better alliance for the northern Israel.

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