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Isaiah 51:9-52:12

Note: In this section of Isaiah there are three units beginning “awake, awake” that form an ABA’ pattern.  Each unit has reference to “comfort”.

A. Isaiah 51:9-16 YHWH to rise to deliver Jerusalem

9 Awake, awake,
put on strength,
O arm of the LORD …

12 I, even I, am he that comforteth you:

B. Isaiah 51:17-23  Jerusalem to rise from desolation

17 Awake, awake,
stand up, O Jerusalem …

19 These two things are come unto thee;
who shall be sorry for thee?
desolation, and destruction,
and the famine, and the sword:
by whom shall I comfort thee?

A’. Isaiah 52:1-12 Zion to put on wedding garments

1 Awake, awake;
put on thy strength
, O Zion;
put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city …

9 Break forth into joy,
sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem:
for the LORD hath comforted his people,
he hath redeemed Jerusalem.

Hebrews 8:3-12:29

Note: I have previously posted a pattern for the first part of Hebrews which concludes in 8:1-2 with a summary statement. Here is a proposal for a large symmetrical structure  for  chapters 8-12. At the centre are the examples of faith in action,  but this list is set within a set of references back to Habakkuk 2.
A and A’ are not balanced in size but they do correspond in general import, both comparing the New Covenant with the Old.

Comments welcome.

A. 8:3-10:17 The Old versus the New Covenant
key linking words mediator (8:6 and 9:15), new covenant (8:8,13 and 9:15), earth/heaven (8:4,5), mount (8:5).

a. 8:3-13 Old Covenant to be replaced by a better New Covenant
… 13 In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away.

b.  9:1-28 The Law, especially the day of Atonement,  was a shadowy pattern of the work of Christ
  24 For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us … 28 So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

a’. 10:1-17 Old Covenant sacrifices to be replaced by the sacrifice of Christ
… 4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins. 5 Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me … He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.

B. 10:18-37 Exhortation to endure
key linking word – endure (10:32)
32 But call to remembrance the former days, in which, after ye were illuminated, ye endured a great fight of afflictions

C. 10:38-39 Live by Faith
Key link – reference back to Habakkuk 2:2-4
38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. 39 But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.

D. 11:1-40 Faith in Action
… 4 By faith … 

C’. 12:1-2a Look to Jesus
Key link – reference back to Habakkuk 2:2-4
12:1 …  and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith … 

B’. 12:2b-17 Exhortation to Endure
3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds … 

A’. 12:18-29 The Old Covenant about to be removed
Key linking words – – mediator (12:24), new covenant (12:24), earth/heaven (12:25,26), mount (12:18,22).
 … 26 Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven. 27 And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.

Genesis 22 as “Ring composition”

In her book “Thinking in Circles” (Yale University Press, 2007, pg 21) the late Mary Douglas proposed that Genesis 22 is a ring composition, a form of chiasmus but with  a subtle difference in the way she sets it out:

B.          B’
C           C’
D          D’
E           E’
F           F’

I have presented the symmetries in the usual way below but this does not capture the concept fully. The pivot point is the second call to Abraham to stop his actions. 

A . 1 And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.

B. 2  And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.

C. 3  And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him. 4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.  5 And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.

D.  6 And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together.

E. 7   And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering? 8 And Abraham said, My son,  God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.

F. 9 And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood. 10 And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son.

A’. And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.

F’.  12  And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.

E’. 13 And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns:

D’. and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son.

C’. (14) And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovahjireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen.

 B’.  15 And the angel of the LORD called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, 16 And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son: 17 That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; 18 And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.

19 So Abraham returned unto his young men, and they rose up and went together to Beersheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beersheba.


From Sergiu Eduard Gavril <[email protected]>

A. God’s message to the prophet – Judgement for Nineveh (1:1.2)

B. God uses forces of the nature to redirect His servant (1:3-13.17)
b1. God uses the great wind (1:4)
b2. God uses the great fish (1:17)

C. The repentance of the sailors (1:14-16)
 c1. God’s intervention on behalf of the sailors (1:15)
c2. Prayer to the Lord (1:14)
c3. Sacrifice and promises – ceremonial elements (1:16)

D.  Jonah’s repentance and God’s recommission ( 2:1–3:2)
d1. Changing of mind (2:1-9)
d2. The God of the second chance(2:10-3:2).

The core of the book: 3:1-2 “the word of the LORD came unto  Jonah the second time …

D.’ Jonah obeys commission (3:3.4)

C.’ The repentance of the Nineveh’s people (3:5-10)
 c3.’ Feast and humbleness – ceremonial elements (3:5-7)
c2.’ Prayer to the Lord (3:8.9)
c1.’ God’s intervention on behalf of the Ninevites (3:10)

B’. God uses forces of the nature to redirect His servant (4:5-8)
b2’. God uses the little worm (4:7)
b1’. God uses the hot wind (4:8)

A’. God’s message to the prophet – Grace for Nineveh (4:10.11)

1 John

The overall structure of this epistle is ellusive. The following is interesting but there are inconsistencies. For example if the word “liar” is a structural marker  for B and ‘B’  what should we say about the same word occurring in  2:22 and 4:20?

The Literary Structure of 1 John: JC..Thomas, Novum Testamentum, Oct., 1998, Vol. 40, Fasc. 4 (Oct., 1998), pp. 369-381

A – 1:1-4 – Prologue-Eternal Life

B – 1:5-2:2 – Making Him a Liar (Walking)

C – 2:3-17 – New Commnandment

D – 2:18-27 – Antichrists

E – 2:28-3:10 – Confidence-Do not Sin

F – 3:11-18 – Love One Another

E’ – 3:19-24 – Confidence- Keep the Commands

D’ – 4:1-6 – Antichrists

C’ – 4:7-5:5 – God’s Love and Ours

B’ – 5:6-12 – Making Him a Liar (Testimony)

A’ – 5:13-21 – Conclusion-Eternal Life

Genesis 14:17-21

From Gary Milbourne

A. 17 After his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley).

B. 18 And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. (He was priest of God Most High.)

C. 19 And he blessed him and said, “Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth;

C’. 20 and blessed be God Most High, who has delivered your enemies into your hand!”

B’. And Abram gave him a tenth of everything.

A’. 21 And the king of Sodom said to Abram,  “Give me the persons, but take the goods for yourself.”

Proverbs 6:16-19

from Des Dromgool  (NZ)
  American Standard Version:

16.There are six things which Jehovah hateth;
Yea, seven which are an abomination unto him:

A. 17  Haughty eyes,   (disdains others)

B. a lying tongue,   (a liar)

C. And hands that shed innocent blood  (a wrongdoer)

D. 18  A heart that deviseth wicked purposes, (bad at the core)

C. Feet that are swift in running to mischief,  (a wrongdoer)

B. 19  A false witness that uttereth lies,  (a liar)

A. And he that soweth discord among brethren.  (disdains others)

Job 25

Pete Boon  Email: [email protected]

1 Then answered Bildad the Shuhite, and said,

a. 2 Dominion and fear are with him,
b. he maketh peace in his high places.

c. 3 Is there any number of his armies?
d. and upon whom doth not his light arise?

e. 4 How then can man be justified with God?
e’. or how can he be clean that is born of a woman?

d’. 5 Behold even to the moon, and it shineth not;
c’. yea, the stars are not pure in his sight.

b’. 6 How much less man, that is a worm?
a’. and the son of man, which is a worm?