A Metaphor for Zion Theology
CHAPTER FIVE: THE BIRTH OF ZION’S CHILDREN
111 CHAPTER FIVE THE BIRTH OF ZION’S CHILDREN Zion asks a perplexing question in Isa 49:21: “Who has borne ( ) for me these?” How could a mother not be aware of giving birth to her children? Scholars usually try to explain this incongruity as an expression of mother Zion’s confusion or forgetfulness, but I submit that in the context of Isa 49:14- 26, the implied answer is that it is YHWH rather than Zion who gave birth to the children. This may sound incredulous, but the logic of the metaphor is grounded in and governed by Zion theology. The basic tenet of Zion theology is that YHWH is the creator of the world, and this is evidenced by DI’s extensive descriptions of YHWH as the maker of Israel, the one who forms the servant/Jacob in the womb (43:1, 7, 21; 44:2, 21, 24; 45:11; 49:5). While such creation often uses the imagery of pottery, DI also employs the metaphor of birth for the return of the people from exile, e.g., in 42:14, YHWH saves the people like a woman in labor ( ), and in 46:3-4, YHWH carries Israel from the womb to old age. Reliance on Zion theology means that YHWH defeats Israel’s enemies like the forces of chaos, (re)establishes YHWH’s city, and (re)creates her inhabitants. Such divine creation is depicted by the metaphor of a birthing mother, which also highlights YHWH’s constant care and compassionate effort to give the oppressed people...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.