The Book of Jeremiah – the Old Testament essays

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The Book of Jeremiah – the Old Testament essays

The book of Jeremiah contains the ancient prophetic literature of the Israelite prophet Jeremiah. Jeremiah, a descendant from the priestly family of Anathoth, began his 40 year ministry in the 13th year of the Judean King Josiah's reign (625 BCE). He continued prophesying until after the destruction of Jerusalem in the 11th year of Zedekiah's reign (586 BCE). Upholding his role as G-d's mouthpiece he transmitted the Divine message to the people of the Judean Southern Kingdom. Jeremiah also relates his prophecies to the exiles and foreign surrounding neighbours. Huldah the prophetess and Zephaniah the prophet were Jeremiah's contemporaries. Baruch Ben Neriah a scribe and loyal friend to Jeremiah recorded the book. Other literature to which Jeremiah claims authorship include the Book of Kins II and lamentations which is an elaboration of the Destruction of the southern kingdom.
Preceding Jeremiah's ministry and the reign of Josiah were the Judean Kings Amon and Menashe who both encouraged idol worship and moral degeneracy. It was Menashe who formerly introduced and sanctioned such behavious which was so diametrically opposed to the Deuteronomoic law- the Divine Constitution which the people of Israel, designated as G-d's "chosen" were obliged to follow. Upon finding a scroll, the "Law of Moses" in the Temple in his 18th year, Josiah decided to end Menashe's idolatrous and immoral campaigns as the discovery of the scroll caused him to realise the extent of the people's rejection of G-d. Although Josiah's fundamental reform was mostly successful in purging g the land of any traces of idolatry, he could not completely eradicate this behaviour, which was so deeply entrenched in the people. Jeremiah responds to the people's unsuccessful return to G-d, chastising them for "Judah did not return to Me wholeheartedly, but insincerely". Although during this period t…