Why are some .....

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by ktn4eg, Jul 18, 2014.

  1. ktn4eg

    ktn4eg
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2004
    Messages:
    3,517
    Likes Received:
    1
    ...... Old Testament prophetic books considered to be "major" prophetic books while some are considered to be "minor" prophetic books?

    I've tried to figure out why this is so, but have never found an answer to this.

    I've heard some folks say that it's because the "major prophets" (Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel) are longer books. If that is the case:

    (1) Why then is Jonah considered a "minor" prophet since that book has only four chapters; while other "minor" prophets such as

    (2) Hosea and Zechariah both have fourteen chapters, Amos has nine, and Micah has seven.

    I'd like to hear from you as to why exact does this "major"/"minor" prophet designation exists.
     
  2. thisnumbersdisconnected

    thisnumbersdisconnected
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2013
    Messages:
    8,448
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jeremiah, Isaiah and Ezekiel prophesied for and against the leaders of Israel throughout their lives and their books cover most of their adult lives.

    While Jonah apparently was a lifelong prophet as well (see 2 Kings 14:25) his only major prophetic event was his ministry to Ninevah, and he quite obviously did not want to do it.

    Though we describe Daniel as a "prophet" and include his work in the minor books, Jewish scholars do not. His is lumped together with what they call "The Writings" which also include the Psalms, Proverbs and Song of Songs. Some such scholars also include Ruth and Esther in that mix.

    Essentially, the Minor Prophets' books center on one specific prophetic event in their lives. Some were also lifelong prophets but felt compelled only to write one book regarding a specific event.

    Amos was a farmer and was called out of Judah to prophecy destruction to Israel. That seems to have been his only prophetic assignment and he apparently went back to his farm afterwards.

    He is an exception, however. Most of the others spent their lives in service to the Lord as His prophet. They just didn't feel the need to record all their work.

    It is obvious from the "Big Three" writings that their prophecies were important, and charted a course for Israel.
     
    #2 thisnumbersdisconnected, Jul 18, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 18, 2014
  3. Deacon

    Deacon
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    6,972
    Likes Received:
    128
    In the Hebrew bible the "minor prophets" were known as the "twelve" and probably were contained in a single scroll.

    To further confuse the issue, there are the early prophets and the later prophets.

    Joshua, Judges, Kings and Samuel are the "early prophets" in the Hebrew canon.

    Rob
     
  4. Deacon

    Deacon
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member
    Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2002
    Messages:
    6,972
    Likes Received:
    128
    I got home and looked thing up.

    Minor correction not "early prophets" but "former prophets".


    Rob
     
  5. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2006
    Messages:
    38,347
    Likes Received:
    788
    The terms major and minor are modern day references to the size of the books. Major prohphets are the books that are much larger than the minor books which often have very few chapters.
     

Share This Page

Loading...