The Added Years Of Hezekiah’s Life -- By: Benjamin Reno Downer

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 080:318 (Apr 1923)
Article: The Added Years Of Hezekiah’s Life
Author: Benjamin Reno Downer


The Added Years Of Hezekiah’s Life

An Inquiry into the Significance of this Period for Isaiah Criticism

Benjamin Reno Downer

Foreword.....................................................................................................................250

Chapter I. The Chronological Difficulty.....................................................................251

Chapter II. Glimpses Into an Unexplored Period........................................................261

Foreword

The interpretation of the book of Isaiah presented in the following pages is an attempt to bring into somewhat of a system views, some of which have been tentatively held by the author for a number of years in his teaching, but the proper correlation of which had not been satisfactorily worked out. In common doubtless with many other students of Old Testament times, he has felt keenly a few of the objections which have been urged against the unity of the book, and yet has turned with increasing disappointment from critical hypotheses which have resulted in the disintegration of one of the noblest specimens of sacred literature. The historical background which is proposed for the separate discourses may be plausible enough in each case, but a feeling of helplessness results as we try repeatedly to shift the scene from age to age in a continuous exposition. To those who have had this experience, and who believe that here we have no collection of oracles from different centuries and various unknown writers, a new endeavor to solve some of the problems may not seem superfluous. No claim is

made that a solution has been found which is free from difficulties. Some have been anticipated and dealt with in the discussion. Others probably exist which have escaped the attention of the author. Those who come to the subject with opinions already formed as to the exact age when certain religious ideas made their appearance in prophetic teaching will naturally object to some of the conclusions. No consideration is asked for the views here presented beyond a sympathetic study of the messages of Isaiah in the light of the events and experiences which it is contended are the historical background out of which they arose. If they shall become more luminous, and cumbered with fewer difficulties, it will be felt that some advance has been made toward a better understanding of the book and an easier defense of its unity.

Frequent reference has been made for the history of the time to the standard work of Rogers, A History of Babylonia and Assyria, in two volumes, sixth edition, revised and enlarged (1915). For brevity these have...

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