By David P. Melvin
Melvin lines the emergence and improvement of the motif of angelic interpretation of visions from past due prophetic literature (Ezekiel 40-48; Zechariah 1-6) into early apocalyptic literature (1 Enoch 17-36; 72-82; Daniel 7-8). studying how the ancient and socio-political context of exilic and post-exilic Judaism and the wider spiritual and cultural setting formed Jewish angelology normally, Melvin concludes that the motif of the analyzing angel served a selected functionality. development upon the paintings of Susan Niditch, Melvin concludes that the examining angel motif served a polemical functionality in repudiating divination as a method of predicting the longer term, whereas while raising the authority of the visionary revelation. The literary impact is to reimagine God as an imperial monarch who principles and communicates via intermediaries—a reimagination that profoundly encouraged next Jewish and Christian culture
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Additional info for The interpreting angel motif in prophetic and apocalyptic literature
A similar vision and exchange involving a pun on the words קָיִץ, “summer fruit,” and קֵץ, “end,” appears in Amos 8:1-3. This same pattern appears in Jer. 1:11-19; 24, in which Yahweh grants the prophet a symbolic vision, asks him what he sees, and finally explains the meaning of the vision.  This transition is first seen in the sixth century, in the books of Ezekiel and Zechariah. A heavenly figure appears in Ezekiel 40–48 and leads Ezekiel on a tour of the eschatological temple. He is described here as a “man whose appearance was like bronze and who had a linen cord and a measuring reed in his hand” (Ezek.
The interpreting angel motif, as the present study argues, appears at a critical juncture in the history of Israelite religion, and it facilitates the development of an important literary genre of the Second Temple period—apocalyptic literature. It also suggests a shift in the view of God and the nature of divine revelation in at least one stream of thought in earliest Judaism and offers support to the notion that the Israelite conception of the divine realm was modeled after sociopolitical institutions.
2d enlarged ed. of KTU: The Cuneiform Alphabetic Textsfrom Ugarit, Ras Ibn Hani, and Other Places. Dietrich, O. Loretz, and J. Sanmartín. Münster, 1995 LCL Loeb Classical Library LHBOTS Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies LSTS Library of Second Temple Studies LXX Septuagint MT Masoretic Text NAC New American Commentary NIBC New International Biblical Commentary NICOT New International Commentary on the Old Testament OBO Orbis biblicus et orientalis Or Orientalia OTL Old Testament Library OTS Old Testament Studies PRSt Perspectives in Religious Studies RA Revue d’assyriologie et d’archéologie orientale RB Revue Biblique RevExp Review and Expositor RSF Rivisti di studi fenici RSR Recherches de science religieuse RTR Reformed Theological Review SAACT State Archives of Assyria Cuneiform Texts SAAS State Archives of Assyria Studies SANE Sources from the Ancient Near East SB Stuttgarter Bibelstudien SBLDS Society of Biblical Literature Dissertation Series SBLMS Society of Biblical Literature Monograph Series SHCANE Studies in the History and Culture of the Ancient Near East SJOT Scandinavian Journal of the Old Testament SOFS Symbolae Osloenses Fasciculus Suppletorius SVTP Studia in Veteris Testamenti pseudepigraphica Transeu Transeuphratène TSAJ Texte und Studien zum antiken Judentum TSK Theologische Studien und Kritiken TOTC Tyndale Old Testament Commentary TynBul Tyndale Bulletin VT Vetus Testamentum VTSup Supplements to Vetus Testamentum WBC Word Biblical Commentary WMANT Wissenschaftliche Monograpien zum Alten und Neuen Testament WUNT Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament WVDOG Wissenschaftliche Verhöffentlichungen der deutschen Orientgesellschaft YOS Yale Oriental Series ZAW Zeitschrift für die alttestamentliche Wissenschaft ZTK Zeitschrift für Theologie und Kirche 5 Timeline Timeline Timeline of the Development of the Interpreting Angel Motif 750 BCE Amos 7:7-9; 8:1-3 Symbolic visions Yahweh interprets Logical correspondence No request for interpretation 600 BCE Jer.