Prophetic discourse : dialogue, disaster or opportunity?
CITATION: Deist, F. E. 1996. Prophetic discourse : dialogue, disaster or opportunity?. Scriptura, 57:179-192, doi:10.7833/57-0-1580.
The original publication is available at http://scriptura.journals.ac.za
Christian tradition has always idealized the ‘writing prophets’. That view has, however, been undermined over the past two decades. We know very little about the origins of these books and even less about the origins of prophetic tradition. The article discusses the difficulties of assigning a social location to prophetic speech and assessing its effect. Perhaps the prophets were mere upper class ‘public health physicians’ who saw the coming downfall of their society and tried, without much success, to convince other of their views. Finally, a few suggestions are made for an imaginative reading of these texts that could enhance the present-day between theologians and society.