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Challenging Prophetic Metaphor

The prophets of the Old Testament use a wide variety of metaphors to describe God and to portray how to understand people in relation to God. Some of these metaphors are familiar and soothing; others are unfamiliar and confusing. Still others portray God in ways that are difficult and uncomfortableGod as abusive husband, for instance, or as neglectful father. Julia OBrien searches the prophetic books for these metaphors, looking for ways that the different images intersect and build off each other. When confronted with disturbing metaphors, she deals with them unflinchingly, providing a sharp critique and evaluation of the interpretations of these metaphors for God. Giving particular attention to the possible uses of these metaphors in the church todayfor good or illOBrien listens to the fullness of the prophetic messages and points us toward new ways to read these theological metaphors for a just faith today.
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About the Author

Julia M. O'Brien is Professor of Old Testament and the Paul H. and Grace L. Stern Chair in Old Testament Studies at Lancaster Theological Seminary in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She is the author of several books on the Old Testament prophets.

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