Date of Award

2010

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts

School

Theological Seminary

Program

Religion, MA: Old Testament

First Advisor

Jiri Moskala

Abstract

Problem. Although it has been shown in recent studies on the topic that the "Day of YHWH" is to be understood not only as a collocation or concept, but as a motif-complex (a theme), the single theological motifs comprising the motif-complex have seemingly never been outlined in a systematic text-oriented study. -- Method. This thesis investigates which main theological motifs comprise the motif-complex of the "Day of YHWH" by means of a text-oriented study of the final text as existent today. It shall be asked whether the "Day of YHWH" is a true biblical-theological theme, that is, whether it is deeply rooted within biblical tradition. This will include an analysis of whether there is a biblical background and a biblical eschatological outlook linked with the "Day of YHWH." To accomplish this aim of investigating whether the "Day of YHWH" is an ongoing biblical-theological theme, the biblical data will be investigated in three steps: First of all the biblical text is to be studied. This includes a survey of all the texts using the exact expression "Day of YHWH," all the texts using the exact expression "Day of YHWH" with an insertion of one word (like revenge, salvation, or wrath) and lastly all the texts using the word "day" with YHWH as a subject and developing a significant day theology. Second, the main theological motifs are to be detected by a detailed study of catchwords, word clusters, and syntactic connections. Third, a biblical intertextual study is to outline the theme‘s inner-biblical linkages, its origin and outlook. -- Results. The main theological motifs linked to the "Day of YHWH" are the motif of cataclysm, divine wrath, judgment, salvation and war, with the motif of judgment being the most dominant among these. The most dominant metaphors used are metaphors of cataclysm, fear, judgment, pride, and war. The most dominant microstructure is the expression "for the day is at hand." The biblical intertextual study shows most linkages with the Egyptian plagues (Exod 7–11), Miriam‘s song (Exod 15), the blessings and curses lists (Deut 28–29), the Song of Moses (Deut 31–32) and Wisdom Literature. -- Conclusions. In the light of the main theological motifs, metaphors, and microstructures it may be stated that the "Day of YHWH" is indeed a biblical-theological theme with its motifs recurring again and again throughout biblical literature. The inner-biblical origin of the "Day of YHWH" is most likely to be traced back to the blessings and curses lists and the Song of Moses (Deut 28–29; 31–32), even more so if one sees the Song of Moses as originally being YHWH‘s own song. The eschatological outlook of the "Day of YHWH" is manifest in several texts looking ahead to its last, ultimate eschatological occurrence. The uniqueness of the "Day of YHWH" lies in its essence of being an event impacting time, even eschatological time, leading to the installment of transcendence.

Subject Area

Day of Jehovah.

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