When Prayer Takes Place: Forays into a Biblical World

Overview

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Where in the world was Jesus when he prayed? Where is any one of us when we pray? Since we are embodied creatures, our prayer location can be mapped onto space-time coordinates. Since we are social creatures, our prayers are also situated within our social locations. But do these sets of coordinates exhaustively identify the place that prayer takes when truly entered into? Conversely, can either set totally prevent prayer from taking place there? These questions lie...
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Overview

Description:
Where in the world was Jesus when he prayed? Where is any one of us when we pray? Since we are embodied creatures, our prayer location can be mapped onto space-time coordinates. Since we are social creatures, our prayers are also situated within our social locations. But do these sets of coordinates exhaustively identify the place that prayer takes when truly entered into? Conversely, can either set totally prevent prayer from taking place there? These questions lie at the intersection of resolutely religious vis-à-vis resolutely secular understandings of existence. The studies in this volume explore dimensions of these issues traced in selected texts from both parts of the Christian Bible.

Endorsements:
""Janzen has been looking at these biblical texts all his life. Every time he looks again, he sees something else by way of connection or nuance . . . It is a delight to salute this long-loved colleague on this rich offer that, as always from him, is a gift of newness.""
--Walter Brueggemann, Columbia Theological Seminary

""Rare is the exegete who is wise beyond his or her own specialty. Rarer still is the interpreter who explores the text down to its minutest of details with infectious wonder. Janzen is that exegete: text critic, theologian, philosopher, and poet. His exegetical forays are unhurried expeditions of a vivacious mind that will touch the heart, indelibly.""
--William P. Brown, Columbia Theological Seminary

""Janzen models what the exegetical imagination can do when it is focused on significant questions and disciplined by wide-ranging study, thorough and exact knowledge of the biblical text, and the life of prayer itself. These essays invite us to slow down and savor Scripture.""
--Ellen F. Davis, Duke Divinity School

""In these essays, both old and new, Janzen delves into detailed exegetical and intertextual analyses of biblical texts, crossing both Testaments and constantly appealing to the original languages with a sensitivity that generates profoundly existential reflection on one's own relationship with God. I found his essays transformative both for my reading of Scripture and for my own life.""
--J. Richard Middleton, Northeastern Seminary

About the Contributor(s):
J. Gerald Janzen is MacAllister-Petticrew emeritus Professor of Old Testament at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis. He has published commentaries on Genesis 12-50, Exodus, and Job, and his most recent book is At the Scent of Water: The Ground of Hope in the Book of Job (2009).

Brent A. Strawn is an associate professor of Old Testament at the Candler School of Theology and Graduate Division of Religion at Emory University. He recently edited The Bible and the Pursuit of Happiness: What the Old and New Testaments Teach Us about the Good Life (2012).

Patrick D. Miller is Charles T. Haley Professor of Old Testament Theology emeritus at Princeton Theological Seminary. He recently authored The Ten Commandments (2009).

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781608993673
  • Publisher: Wipf & Stock Publishers
  • Publication date: 11/28/2012
  • Pages: 452
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

J. Gerald Janzen is MacAllister-Petticrew emeritus Professor of Old Testament at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis. He has published commentaries on Genesis 12-50, Exodus, and Job, and his most recent book is At the Scent of Water: The Ground of Hope in the Book of Job (2009).

Brent A. Strawn is an associate professor of Old Testament at the Candler School of Theology and Graduate Division of Religion at Emory University. He recently edited The Bible and the Pursuit of Happiness: What the Old and New Testaments Teach Us about the Good Life (2012).

Patrick D. Miller is Charles T. Haley Professor of Old Testament Theology emeritus at Princeton Theological Seminary. He recently authored The Ten Commandments (2009).

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Table of Contents

Foreword Brent A. Strawn Patrick D. Miller xi

Preface xv

Acknowledgments xvii

Abbreviations xix

Introduction: From Plane to Plane 1

Part I Orienting Ourselves in the Biblical World

1 "… and the Bush Was Not Consumed" 17

Addenda 23

2 What's in a Name? "Yahweh" in Exodus 3 and the Wider Biblical Context 24

Names and Their Meanings 24

The Name "Yahweh" and Its Meaning for Israel 27

The Name and Its Meaning for Existence Today 35

3 What Does the Priestly Blessing Do? 38

The Priestly Blessing and God's Blessing in Creation 38

The Vocabulary of P and the Priestly Blessing 41

Cosmos, Tabernacle, and the Priestly Blessing 43

4 Praying in the Space God Creates for the World 50

Making Space 50

The Memra 52

Space for God 53

Praying in the Space 55

Part II Forays into a Biblical World

5 Prayer as Self-Address: The Case of Hannah 61

Comfort: God's and the Self's 62

Self-Encouragement in the Worship of God 65

siah: The Means of Self-Encouragement 70

Hannah's Meditation and Self-Address 72

6 The Root škl and the Soul Bereaved in Psalm 35 77

škl as Maternal Bereavement 78

Compassion Requited and Unrequited 79

Suffering the Loss of Matrixal Connections: A Psychological Perspective 86

Rage and the Bitterness of Unrequited Compassion 88

7 As God Is My Witness: Another Look at Psalm 12:6 91

What, Precisely, Does God Promise the Psalmist? 91

Another Look at the Language of the Promise 92

Gods Promise and Job's Hope-Against-Hope in Job 16:19 96

8 "And Not We Ourselves": Psalm 100:3 and the Eschatological Reign of God 99

Is "Not We Ourselves" Grammatical Hebrew? 101

The Range of Variation in a Stock Expression 102

But Why the Need to Disavow Self-Creation? 103

On Divine and Human "Making" 104

The Verb ga'ah 109

Practical Atheism in Psalm(s) 9-10 110

More on the Self-Confident Claim, "I Won't Slip" 111

Recurring to Craigie's Remarks on Psalm 9-10 112

"And Not We Ourselves": Resolving the Conflict Drama in Psalms 93-99 116

Themes in Psalms 93-100 Bearing on Psalm 100:3 117

The Conflict Drama Resolved in Psalm 100:3 126

Is "Not We Ourselves" Palatable in Today's World? 129

9 Standing on the Promises of God: On the Thematic Resonance of "No Foothold" in Psalm 69 134

Thematic Ligatures in the Psalms 134

On the Social Significance of "Standing" 136

One's Standing in Others' Eyes 137

Standing in the Face of Reproach in Psalm 69 140

"Standing" as a Ligature throughout the Psalter 141

The Case of Jeremiah 144

Standing before God: The Case of Daniel 151

On Some Hebrew Expressions Involving the Verbs hazaq and 'ames 154

Standing before God: The Case of Habakkuk 155

Back to Psalm 69 156

A Last Word, then, on Psalm 69 160

A Belated Confession 164

10 The Verb ya'ames in Psalm 27:14: Who Is Strengthening Whom? 165

A Preliminary Review of the Hebrew Text in Psalm 27:14 166

The Verb 'ms in the Qal Stem 167

The Verb 'ms in the Piel Stem 169

The Verb 'ms in the Hithpael Stem 172

The Verb 'ms in the Hiphil Stem 174

Weighing the Pros and the Cons 174

The Special Case of the Verb ?rk in the Hiphil Stem 176

Final Assessment 179

A Brief Excursion to Psalm 27:8 181

Two Modern Afterwords to Psalm 27 184

11 Revisiting "Forever" in Psalm 23:6 188

Aspects of Experience "in God's House" 189

Experiencing Time, Mundane and Otherwise 193

Connotations of the Phrase, "Length of Days," and Its Cognates 195

On Some Axes of Affirmation Converging in Psalm 23:6b 199

Drawing Matters to a Conclusion 204

Addendum 207

Part III The Standpoint of Two Prophets

12 Solidarity and Solitariness in Ancient Israel: The Case of Jeremiah 211

13 Eschatological Symbol and Existence in Habakkuk 218

From Despairing Complaint to Affirmation in Hope 220

On Existing Eschatologically within and for the Present Time 236

Part IV An Interlude

14 Toward a Hermeneutics of Resonance: A Methodological Interlude between the Testaments 241

Richard B. Hays on Intertextual Resonance 243

Patrick D. Miller on Resonance 250

Samuel Taylor Coleridge on Resonance in the Nature of Things 255

Resonance and Alfred North Whitehead's Di-Polar Cosmology 265

Rupert Sheldrake on Morphic Resonance 269

Hans Loewald on Resonance in Nature and in Human Becoming 270

Resonance and The Disenchantment of Secular Discourse 282

Resonance between the Testaments in Proverbs 8 and Colossians 1 289

On Hymnic Resonance and Community Cohesion 296

Part V New Testament Afterword

15 "Hid with Christ in God" 303

Praying to the Father Who Is "in Secret" (Matthew 6:6) 306

God's "Secret Place" as Temptation and as Reality 309

"Your Life Is Hid with Christ in God" 311

Prayer in Romans 8 as the Nexus of the Solidarity of Heaven and Earth 312

Garrisoned in Prayer 319

A Postscript to Be Read in Retrospect 323

16 Faith as a Foothold "within the Veil": Afterwords in the Letter to the Hebrews 328

Faith as a Foothold on Things Hoped For 329

Reproach and "Standing" in Hebrews and in Psalm 69 331

Jesus as Son on the Throne / High Priest in the Tabernacle 334

Jesus as archegon kai teleioten of Faith (fulness) 344

17 Redeeming the Expression "Redeeming the Time" 348

Exagorazo in Classical Greek 350

Buying Time in Daniel 2 353

The Verb pa'am as a "Beating of Times" 354

Redeeming the Time in Ephesians 5:16 359

The Prayer of Empowerment in Ephesians 3:14-21 and the Empowering Vision in Daniel 10 374

Conclusion 379

Bibliography 393

Author Index 401

Scripture Index 405

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