Little Books, Big Voices: Four Minor Prophets

Join us for a look into some of the lesser known treasures of the Tanach. Habbakuk, Zephaniah, Joel and Haggai prophesied during turbulent times. These small books, part of the Twelve Minor Prophets (Trei Asar), highlight the challenges of the period surrounding the destruction of the first Temple and the beginning of the second Temple. But the sages taught that all the prophecies that were preserved in the Tanach also contain lessons for future generations, and lessons for our lives are to be found too in the big voices of these four prophets.

Introduction To Twelve Minor Prophets – Minor Prophets

Introduction to Twelve Minor Prophets – Trei Asar Introduction Video to Twelve Minor Prophets Timeline of Kings and Events View the timeline of Kings and Events. Babylonian Talmud, Baba Batra 14b תלמוד בבלי מסכת בבא בתרא דף יד עמוד ב ת”ר, סדרן של נביאים: יהושע ושופטים, שמואל ומלכים, ירמיה ויחזקאל, ישעיה ושנים עשר. מכדי הושע […]

Habakkuk – Chapter 1 – Minor Prophets

Study Sheet – Habakkuk Introduction and Chapter 1 I recommend you read through all of Chapter 1 first and then go back focusing on the text and on the questions and texts below. Part 1 – Who is Habakkuk? Questions for discussion:  Look at Habakkuk 1:1.  What, if anything, can we learn about Habakkuk from […]

Habakkuk – Chapter 2 – Minor Prophets

Habakkuk Chapter 2 Study Sheet 1) Reading exercise: – Read through the chapter for familiar verses or phrases. 2) Verse 1 -– Compare these interpretations of the meaning of תוכחתי The use of the term “my reproof” (tokahti) shows that the prophet characterized his second lament as a reproof or rebuke of [Hashem].  He was […]

Habakkuk – Chapter 3 – Minor Prophets

Habakkuk Chapter 3 Study Sheet Reading Exercise Read over chapter 3 in Hebrew if possible and in your native language. What words indicate that this is a song? What words refer to water?  What words refer to other parts of nature? What words and Hebrew roots repeat? Commentary Some scholars believe that the first and […]

Zephaniah – Chapters 1-3 – Minor Prophets

Zephaniah Chapters 1-3 Study Sheet Chapters 1 and 2 1) Reading Exercise Read Zephaniah’s genealogy.  Zephaniah is the only prophet whose genealogy goes back four generations.  Why do you think this is?  For background on King Hezekiah, see II Kings 20.  For background on King Josiah, see II Kings 22:1-23:30. Scholars have wondered whether Zephaniah wrote […]

Joel – Chapters 1-2 – Minor Prophets

Joel Chapters 1-2 Study Sheet 1) Chapter 1 describes the destruction wrought by locusts.  Do you think the locusts are real, or a metaphor?  How do you understand verse 6? Verse 4 uses four nouns.  Rashi writes: רש”י יואל פרק א פסוק ד (ד) יתר הגזם וגו’ – גזם ארבה ילק חסיל מיני גובאי הם […]

Joel – Chapters 3-4 – Minor Prophets

Joel –Chapters 3 – 4 Study Sheet Chapter 3 is a very short chapter. In Christian Bibles, it is part of Chapter 2. Why do you think it is set apart as its own chapter in the Hebrew Bible? Verses 3:1-2 have been mentioned as an indication that the nature of prophecy was changing in […]

Haggai – Chapters 1-2 – Minor Prophets

Haggai Study Sheet Please read the whole book of Haggai through, then go back to work on these questions.  You may also want to read Ezra 1:1-6:22 for background: Haggai is one of just a few prophets for whom the text gives no genealogy and no location.  What can we learn about who Haggai was […]

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