Original Research

Quest for Justice as Reconciliation of the Poor and the Righteous in Psalms 37,49 and 73

H. Irsigler, Guest Author
Verbum et Ecclesia | Skrif en Kerk: Vol 19, No 3 | a2510 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v19i3.2510 | © 2022 H. Irsigler, Guest Author | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 February 2022 | Published: 30 December 1998

About the author(s)

H. Irsigler, University of Freiberg, Germany
Guest Author, Department of Old Testament, University of Pretoria, South Africa

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Abstract

The typical antithesis of the wicked and the righteous emerges in different literary works of post-exilic Israel. It is frequently combined with the motif of the shalom of the (rich and) wicked. Their fortune provokes enry and very serious challenges for the faith of those who understand themselves as the poor and the righteous. The heavy social crisis in the Persian period of the 5th and 4th century BC as well as the crisis of wisdom in this time appears as a global background of this topic. My paper examines the pursuit of justice, ie of God's justice and of the fulfilment of the frustrated religiously legitimated expectations of fortune, in the Psalms 37, 49 and 73. The intention is to realize the conflict situation presupposed by the texts and to profile the specific strategies and purposes of overcoming the conflict. The quest for justice doesn't intend a reconciliation of the poor and the rich or the wicked and the righteous. However, it leads to a "reconciliation" of the tempted pious, to a new trust in YHWH, to a new hope, and to a renewed capability of communal life.

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