Isaiah 53 interpretation

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rgprice
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Isaiah 53 interpretation

Post by rgprice » Mon Mar 15, 2021 11:49 pm

We know of course that Christians interpreted Isaiah 53 as talking about crucifixion, but what evidence do we have for how Jews interpreted the passage prior to Christianity?

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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Isaiah 53 interpretation

Post by Ben C. Smith » Tue Mar 16, 2021 11:16 am

rgprice wrote:
Mon Mar 15, 2021 11:49 pm
We know of course that Christians interpreted Isaiah 53 as talking about crucifixion, but what evidence do we have for how Jews interpreted the passage prior to Christianity?
I do not have a complete response prepared, but you may be interested in glancing over something I posted a while back about the Suffering Servant and the Dead Sea scrolls: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=5640.

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Ben C. Smith
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Re: Isaiah 53 interpretation

Post by Ben C. Smith » Tue Mar 16, 2021 11:20 am

rgprice wrote:
Mon Mar 15, 2021 11:49 pm
We know of course that Christians interpreted Isaiah 53 as talking about crucifixion, but what evidence do we have for how Jews interpreted the passage prior to Christianity?
Later, of course, Jewish exegetes interpreted the Servant as the Messiah. But it is naturally controversial how far back in time this interpretation goes.

rgprice
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Re: Isaiah 53 interpretation

Post by rgprice » Wed Mar 17, 2021 3:25 am

Good call. Hymn 17 & 18 have interesting elements.
Hymn 17:
For You, O my God, have concealed me from mankind, and Your law You have hidden in me until the time You reveal Your salvation in me. For in my soul's distress You did not abandon me, but You heard my cry in the bitterness of my soul.
Hymn 18:
And concerning the mystery which You hid in me, they go about as slanderers to the children of destruction. Because You have exalted yourself in me, and forsake their guilt, You have hidden in me the spring of understanding and the counsel of truth.

John2
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Re: Isaiah 53 interpretation

Post by John2 » Wed Mar 17, 2021 7:35 pm

There are also parallels seen between Is. 53 and 4Q541 (and a possible reference to crucifixion), as Brooke discusses here:


And Martinez writes:

This text also shows us that the portrayal of this Messiah-priest with the features of the Suffering Servant of Deutero-Isaiah is not an innovation of purely Christian origin either, but the result of previous developments ... Whatever might be the possible allusion to the death of the expected Messiah-priest, the identification of this figure with the Servant of Isaiah seems confirmed by the parallels...


https://books.google.com/books?id=nmvkd ... on&f=false

It is also discussed in The Suffering Servant: Isaiah 53 in Jewish and Christian Sources.


https://books.google.com/books?id=kSawg ... ch&f=false

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