Prophets in Judaism

According to the Talmud, there were 48 prophets and 7 prophetesses of Judaism.[1][2] The last Jewish prophet is believed to have been Malachi. In Jewish tradition it is believed that the period of prophecy, called Nevuah, ended with Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi at which time the "Shechinah departed from Israel".[3][4]

ProphetsEdit

According to the Talmud, there were 48 prophets and seven prophetesses.[5][1]

The 48 prophetsEdit

  1. Abraham
  2. Isaac
  3. Jacob
  4. Moses
  5. Aaron
  6. Joshua
  7. Phinehas
  8. Eli
  9. Elkanah
  10. Samuel
  11. Gad
  12. Natan
  13. David
  14. Ahijah the Shilonite
  15. Solomon
  16. Shemaiah
  17. Iddo
  18. Obadiah
  19. Jehu
  20. Oded
  21. Azariah
  22. Hanani
  23. Jahaziel
  24. Eliezer
  25. Elijah
  26. Elisha
  27. Michaiah
  28. Jonah
  29. Amos
  30. Hosea
  31. Amoz
  32. Isaiah
  33. Micah
  34. Joel
  35. Zephaniah
  36. Nahum
  37. Habakkuk
  38. Urijah
  39. Jeremiah
  40. Ezekiel
  41. Mehseiah
  42. Neriah
  43. Baruch ben Neriah
  44. Seraiah
  45. Haggai
  46. Zechariah
  47. Mordecai
  48. Malachi

The seven prophetessesEdit

  1. Sarah
  2. Miriam
  3. Deborah
  4. Hannah
  5. Abigail
  6. Huldah
  7. Esther

Rabbinic traditionEdit

Although the Talmud states that only “48 prophets and 7 prophetesses prophesied to Israel”,[6] it does not mean that there were only 55 prophets. The Talmud challenges this with other examples, and concludes by citing a Baraita tradition that the number of prophets in the era of prophecy was double the number of Israelites who left Egypt (600,000 males). The 55 prophets are recorded, because they made prophecies that have eternal relevance for future generations and not just for their own generation, or own ecstatic encounter with God.[7][8] Hebrew scripture makes references to groups of such ecstatic prophets, for example concerning King Saul:

10 And when they came thither to the hill, behold, a band of prophets met him; and the spirit of God came mightily upon him, and he prophesied among them. 11 And it came to pass, when all that knew him beforetime saw that, behold, he prophesied with the prophets, then the people said one to another: ‘What is this that is come unto the son of Kish? Is Saul also among the prophets?’ 12 And one of the same place answered and said: ‘And who is their father?’ Therefore it became a proverb: ‘Is Saul also among the prophets?’ 13 And when he had made an end of prophesying, he came to the high place.[9]

The Talmud lists seven prophets to the nations of the world: Balaam and his father Beor, plus Job and his associates Eliphaz, Bildad, Zophar and Elihu.[10]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Scherman, Nosson. The Stone Edition Tanach. Mesorah Publications, Limited. p. 2038.
  2. ^ Megillah 14a and glosses ad loc.
  3. ^ A Dictionary of the Jewish-Christian Dialogue, Paulist Press (1995), p167.
  4. ^ Light of Prophecy Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America/National Conference of Synagogue Youth (1990), p6.
  5. ^ Megillah 14a and glosses ad loc.
  6. ^ Talmud, Tractate Megillah 14a
  7. ^ Why Isn't the Book of Daniel Part of the Prophets? from Chabad.org, footnote 2
  8. ^ Talmud Megilla 14a
  9. ^ 1 Samuel 10-13
  10. ^ Bava Batra 15b