Date of Award

1995

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Religion, Old Testament Studies PhD

First Advisor

J. Bjørnar Storfjell

Second Advisor

Jacques B. Doukhan

Third Advisor

Richard M. Davidson

Abstract

This dissertation attempts to fill a gap in studies on the remnant motif in the Old Testament by investigating this motif in the book of Jeremiah, a task not fully attempted previously. This study pursues the motif within the main theological framework of judgment and salvation in the book. Five technical terms designating remnant are considered: šכr, plt, mlt, śrd, and ytr.

Chapter 1 canvasses the literature on remnant research from 1903 to the present. It is divided into two sections. The first deals with publications on the remnant motif in materials outside the book of Jeremiah. It is not intended to be critical since it is not dealing with the data in Jeremiah. The second utilizes an evaluative approach to works on the remnant motif that discuss the Jeremianic materials.

In chapter 2 it is discovered that Judah's judgment results from faithlessness and breach of the covenant. The Babylonians are the agents ofdestruction, but God is the One who executes punitive action against His people, rendering them an insignificant "historical remnant" which loses its privilege of election. Any hope of renewal is reserved for the exiles.

The language of war in chapter 3 denotes unrelenting judgment against the remnant amidst the oracles against foreign nations. From the onset both the inevitability and the universality of judgment are realized. The goal of judgment is the absolute sovereignty of Yahweh above all nations.

Chapter 4 demonstrates that God's final act is salvation and not judgment. The divine initiative manifests itself in the restoration of the remnant community. This is grounded in God's grace, forgiveness, elective love, and the establishment of the New Covenant in association with the faithfulness and repentance of the people. Under the auspices of the Messiah a new community with a New Covenant will be formed. This points inan eschatological direction. Salvation is here considered as a continuum of judgment. The remnant motif, therefore, functions to juxtapose the messages of judgment and salvation.

Subject Area

Salvation--Biblical teaching., Remnant (Theology), Judgment of God--Biblical teaching.

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