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Metaphors of Psalm 23 for Refugees and Refugee Admission Policy

Lee Il Rye 1

1서울신학대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The life mentioned in Psalm 23 signifies the life that could have received salvation from “Jehova’s home”. In particular, he poet sings of gratitude in a desperately dangerous situation because he has gotten the right of asylum. Of course it is difficult to view it in relation with an accidental murder or as a function of asylum to protect oneself from an unjust blood revenge. The function of asylum protection, mentioned in the Old Testament, has led to changes within its fundamental nature depending on the situation and time period. Therefore, it is clear that Psalm 23 implies the temple asylum that protects the poet’s life in desperate danger. At the same time, verse 1-3 is the song about hope of shelter sung by the Israeli refugee escaping from Egypt. Especially verse 1-3 is a detailed and practical model in relation to the refuge function for the protection of refugees. Here, in Psalm 23, we can see a close relation between the asylum function and the refuge function. If we focus on verse 6 and 1-3(AA’), which forms the outline of the complete Psalm, we can read through chiasmus that the Shepherd metaphor (1-3) and the ‘Party Host’-Metaphor (verse 6) can be considered identical. The important theological introspection takes Verse 1-3 can be read as the song of the Israeli people, and thus verse 6 can be read as the song of asylum protection from the Israeli people. The important theological observation takes verse 1-3 as a starting point to read the song of the Israeli, thus verse 6 can be read as the song of asylum protection from Israeli people. Function of refuge and function of asylum protection, those two topics are connected and imply a total a total life of salvation. The metaphor in Psalm 23 contains the necessity of a ‘spatial and geographic place’ for the refugees’ refuge and implies at the same time that there is an ‘asylum tradition’ which has to be protected through legal device. The metaphor in Psalm 23 shows that the function of asylum and refuge have a two-sided absolute value for the politics regarding refugees and the acceptance of refugees.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.