[b-hebrew] Isaiah 53 read within the book as a whole

Lisbeth S. Fried lizfried at umich.edu
Mon May 24 23:30:28 EDT 2004


> Dear Liz,
Hi Harold,
> 
>
> >The difficulty with your proposal here is that the speaker says:
> >Hen, Behold, Look!, See! The addressee is right there, right in front
> >of the speaker. This is not some Davidic king of the far-off future,
> >this is the hear and now.
> 
> HH: But I believe that the Servant passages
> describe the coming Messiah. 
You're right!
But the Messiah in Isaiah is Cyrus!

There are quite a
> number of these passages, and some short texts
> may belong to this grouping despite lacking the
> word "servant" (e.g., Isa 48:16).
Cyrus.

 Some of these
> passages have the Servant speak in the first
> person. In other places the Lord addresses the
> Servant as present. Yet I believe he is a figure
> of prophecy.
He speaks to him as if he were present because he is
present.

> 
> >  >> HH: A second possibility for Isaiah 55:5 might be that the second
> >>  person masculine singular addressee is the nation Israel.
> >
> >What would the point of that be? That a nation that Israel doesn't
> >know comes running to it? This is royal imagery, as we see
> >in the psalm.
> 
> HH: Well, if israel were the ruling nation, then
> this would seem to be a meaningful assertion:
Not unless Israel is the Servant and redeems itself.
Then you don't have a redeemer or a messiah, just
Israel.
But it was Cyrus who rescued the Jews, returned them
to YHWH physically by returning them to the temple
and YHWH to the temple.
This is the task of the Messiah, of the redeemer.
We await another one to do the same as Cyrus did.
Best,
Liz






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