Wednesday, October 04, 2006

What Happened to the Other Prophets?

Thanks to Laya for volunteering


We learned in class that there were 1.2 million neviim (double the amount of people at yitziat mitzraim). However, we only know of 50 neviim. What happened to the other prophets?

Perhaps their prophecies were not eternal (we mentioned earlier in the blog that the prophecies we know of can be applied in future times). Maybe their prophecies were similar to those of the known prophets, just not as effective (In the sense of not as powerful/moving because, for the most part, prophets are not so successful). Or maybe they had sinned/rebelled and were then punished by not be recognized as a prophet (although I think we would know about this if it happened). Just something I was thinking about.

Any other ideas?

18 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Laya raised a really interesting point about the 'other' Neveim. I think that learning about their stories would be really interesting. Of course we don't have very many reliable acounts of them (or at least few that I've heard of), and of course their stories were not included in the Tanach because the lessons that they learned through their prophecies and in their lives were not important "l'dorot". If it is at all possible, I would like to learn about some of these Neveim from a religious perspective, purely for the moral value of their humanity.
-Rachael R. :)

October 04, 2006 6:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well I think it's important to examine what the function of a nevuah is, or why God communicates with us through a navi. One is to tell us that we're doing something wrong and to do teshuvah. Two, to tell B"Y, in the case of Bilaam. Three, to forsee the future, like Datan and Aviram or Pharoh.

But think about us today with Judaism-we each have our own Rav, and our own news, and our own situations. Yes, there are some global messages and events, but we are very autonomus, even within Kemp Mill. Imagine that, and 12 tribes, and all that politics-each with their own local prophet.

It's like for me, Rabbi Bieler's hashkafah on the behavior of shul politics is incredibly relevant, but how relevant is it to Rabbi Breitowitz's community? Now apply that to all modern Orthodox community...is that really so important? I think that the greater meaning underlying the situation is for the dorot, but that has already been published and spoken about enough that we're all aware of it.
-Tali

October 04, 2006 11:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There could be an infinite number of reasons why we only know of 50 prophecies compared to the many others that there were bu the underlying point I think is a little of what Tali said. If it isin't relevant to everyone around and is only relevant to certain sections of people or a certain point in time then why keep theses nevuot? Also, I think that if these nevuot were the ones chosen to be kept for all time, they are all the more special and important especially in our day and age where we lack the ability of recieving nevuot.

October 05, 2006 8:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow there, forgot to give crdit to myself for typing that lil' section there!
-amalia

October 05, 2006 8:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Feeling a little stupid but i want tomake a correction to what i wrote:
there weren't 50 prophecies that we kept but the ones that we didkeep are still numerous!
-amalia

October 05, 2006 9:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i agree with Rashi, these nevuot were prob not relevant for the generations, but i would add that maybe they also were not relevant to the jews, had no connection w/ them, so they werent recorded. that or they didnt have any lesson to teach us (which is practically the same thing as relevance for the generations). i know that we discussd in class that nevuahs were not given unless they had some connection to the jews, but how can we be sure if we dont know exactly what they are.It make more sense that nevuahs were given, just not kept about non jews because hashem did not think it was necessary to pass them down, (which ties nicely w/ the whole generational relevance thing going on). so thats my take in it- these nevuahs werent kept because they werent relevant for future generations, and they didnt include jews.
Chag Sameach everyone,
Aviva

October 05, 2006 9:08 PM  
Anonymous Lisa Amy said...

I've been seeing through my studies in navi classes that Navi's do not neccesarily prophesize events or such; most of the time we just see them encouraging jews to follow God. Not that they didn't prophesize and do great things also- (ex)Eliyahu did awesome things like revivng a boy and tons of other things. However, alot of his time was spent trying to encourage religiousness. in fact, the reason he "dies" is because he gets so fed up with the nation who doesnt follow him. Perhaps, mainly the navi only records the prophets who did deeds themselves and the other thousands of prophets just tried to get jews to be religious [( through small profesies telling them to do so)- (or can people get the title prophet without recieving a profesy? )] and therefore did not not need to be recorded. I know that falls under the category of not nevuot ledorot- but its an addition to it.
thanks for listening and have an amazing chag!,
lisa

October 05, 2006 9:59 PM  
Anonymous Shira Moer said...

ok so I pretty much agree with everything Aviva said and I was gona write all that in my comment but now i guess I won't-but I do have a little more to add. I think that the main reason we do not have the records of the other Neviim is because they were not pertinent or important to anything that the Jewish people would need. They didnt teach us any lessons that would apply to us or help us. Even though this is most probably true,(but we can never know for sure because we don't have them)there were still many Neviim that weren't recorded. I mean out of the 1.2 million we only have 50 of them? I could understand a lot of the prochecies might not have been relevant to all generations, but 1.2 million is a lot, and I think there had to be another reason since only 50 were recorded. These fifty were probably espcially important. Out of the 1.2 million there were probably many that were significant, but we have the 50 that are thought to be the most important. There could have been some that just were never recorded, some that weren't relevant to the future or Bnei Yisroel,some that werent important, or many other reasons. The fact is we have the 50 that were important and essential.

I do think it would have been really cool if we had at least some of the other 1.2 prophecies, because then we could see the difference between the two levels of prophecies. And we could explain why they werent as vital as the main 50, but we don't so we must learn these other prophecies and really know them so we know why they were so importand and why we have them.

-shira m

October 05, 2006 10:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well we learned in class that the reason that we kept the nevum that we did was because those were the ones for all the generations-the ones that wood aply to ever single generation of Jews.So maybe the other nevim only had nevuum that were applicable to that time period and why wood we want to read somehting that dosent apply to us and wont help us as Jews. Furthermore, some of these nevvim cood have prophecised about the same things-therefore we cut it short to make sure that there were no repetitive ideas etc.I know much of this is a repeat of what Shira said, but i really belive that this is the explination. Another idea I had was that in the torah do we mention every single name of evyer person-like with the counting etc. NO because it wood take up too much space and no one wants to hear that many names so maybe Hashem was doing this for our sake. TO prove that phrophecy is something really speaical and maybe if evyerthing had been wrritten down they woodnt think that way. It wood jsut be person after person, and the Jewish nation wood think-phropecy isnt specail-every1 does it. Hashem did not want this to happen therefore they are not all wrritenn down. Chag Sameach!!!
-shiraz!

October 06, 2006 9:02 AM  
Blogger saragaut said...

i totoally agree with sheez. when we learned that we only kept the naviim that are applicable to future generations, i think that means that we kep the ones who had a formulated lesson to teach future jews, for exampl the story of yonah teaches us not to run away form g-d as well as many other lessons. for another example, chagai had valuable lessons too, he encouraged the jews to stop sitting around and rebuild and he pushed their faith and attitudes and this is also a timeless lesson. We clearly are keeping the lessons that can be applicable forever and if we needed to learn about 120,000 neviim than those 120,000 stories wouldnt teach us anything. just as we only kep the important neviim, we also only kept the important lessons and even though there may be a few that are chose they are the ones that hashem chose to guide us through.
Great question.
keep up the good work kiddiesss

October 06, 2006 2:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

although it would be interesting to know all the other nevuot that occured, it would be unrealistic. the mass amount of prophecies that happened would be a) too much to record and b) it would get very tedious to learn all of them. even learning 50 is alot , especially with needing to learn mforshim in order to fully understnad the stories and their morals. As to why these specifics prophecies and not others, i tihnk that there are also two reasons. one is like tali siad, and like we learnedin class, many of these prophecies dont pertain to us now a days. secondly i think that some prohpecies were omitted from being recorded because they were too complex. by that i mena that alot of neviim were on very high levels of kedusha, and liveed in a compeltly different culture, if we had kept their prophecies they would havemade no sense, and could have easily been misinterpreted. although the neviim that we leanr about are also o a high level, their prophecies are all veyr clear to us, as opposed to other prophecies wich may have been confusin, and could have led our religion in a completly different direction if interpreted incorrectly.

~tamar schneck

October 06, 2006 2:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just as you can easily say that we don’t have all of the neviim written down, you can also say that about other books in Nach. For example, in Bamidbar 21:14, we are told that an event is written down in the book of wars. I don’t’ know about you guys, but I’ve never learned about that sefer in school. According to the Ibn Ezra this book originated with Avraham and over the years the book became lost, just like many of the books of the earlier times. This closely relates to the issue at hand. What happened to the other Neviim? Well I could say that over time they became lost as well. It is also quite possible that they weren’t pertinent, the same idea that we learned in school. If you think about it, it makes a lot of sense. If something isn’t relevant to us we generally don’t really want to hear it. So why would we need to learn about something that isn’t necessary or related to us.

October 06, 2006 4:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

sorry naomi z

October 06, 2006 4:26 PM  
Anonymous Leora said...

I defiently agree with shira moer we obviously dont have the other records or naviim for a reason if we were supposed to have them we would have them.....but we do have the other 50 which are obvioualy of some importance...at least we have them

October 06, 2006 6:06 PM  
Anonymous raydott said...

alright i read the first few but then i lost patience. so i hate to be the party pooper, but to put it bluntly: I dont think we kept the other nevuot because they probably werent very interesting and people would have gotten board of hearing about tons of different nevuot. when we read in the tanach about an individual recieving prophecy, we take it seriously. if we read about it every other perek, it would probably lose its value to us. and honestly, we read about enough prophecies...im content with the ones we know about.

October 08, 2006 10:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally agree with all of the points-but the point about"nevuah l'dorort" often confuses me-aren't all nevuot somehow directly realtedto some social/ethical/political quandary that we can realte to today? Another thing I was thinking about...Perhaps we only began to keep neviim as they began to get more sparce, when they became mreo special. Kind of like the special attention we give to endangered species. And if perhap the people themselves werent' sparc3e, perhaps there were few nevuahs with "eternal" meaning. (This can be compared to hashem's CONSTANT interfrence with bnei yisrael in the desert and their failure to be "impressed" with it-perhaps it was the overabundance of miracles that densensitized them from G-d's wonders..?)

-dasi

October 08, 2006 10:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe Nevuah was the psuedo science it is today. Today we have thousands and thousands of "psychics" but only a limited few have any plausible claim to prophetic capabilities, and usually there is some wierd medical explanation involved (greys anatomy... i am stupid) Maybe the thousands of prophets missing were essentially horoscope makers and crystal ball readers. If you think about the Nevuot le dorot they arent exactly hard prophecies to make and really they are just lessons for all time. If a philosopher came out with a life changing theory that taugh the world to understand themselves better and to be better people that would live on forever. If, however, someone worte a fortune thats not elievbeable even onw.
Eliana

October 09, 2006 4:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with Shira Z. When we learn that around 30 prophecies are recorded its is becuase their nevuahs do not have a message for the future generations. Maybe the nevuahs they received were personal or were only relevant for a few years. Either way, the reason those nevuahs weren't recorded is becuase they are not relevant today. Also imagine if we had all 1.2 millions nevuahs recorded- it would be pretty overwhelming.

Amanda:)

(Btw, Rabbi Krestt I forgot we had to write the post by Friday...)

October 09, 2006 9:42 PM  

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