Is the extravagant grief expressed for Moab in Isaiah 15–16 genuine, or is it, as both Luther and Calvin suggested, intended ironically? In contrast to most recent interpretations, this study argues that the Isaianic lament over Moab is not only ironic but satiric, mocking the Moabites in their misfortune. According to Jones, an ironic reading resolves many of the apparent conflicts within the text and prepares the way for demonstrating the compositional integrity of the text, along with an appraisal of historical information regarding Israel’s relations with Moab, to establish Isaiah 15–16 as another instance of the type of prophetic satire found, for example, in Isaiah 14 and in Ezekiel 19, 27 and 28. The study concludes with an appendix on the location of Kir Hareseth.
“This study is an important contribution to reading Isaiah 15–16 as a unity.” —Hebrew Studies
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