Friday, April 16, 2010

The Daughter of Judah

A bit of a departure from the norm here. This was done as a contribution to the excellent Book of Genocide blog: wherein artists interpret and illustrate allocated passages from the Bible.

I got this, from the lamentaitons of Jeremiah;

The LORD hath trodden under foot all my mighty men in the midst of me: he hath called an assembly against me to crush my young men: the LORD hath trodden the virgin, the daughter of Judah, as in a winepress.

I did a little research on Jeremiah and on the various interpretations of this passage.

Jeremiah is usually depicted as an old bearded man , hunched in a dungeon with a haunted, worried expression and this is what I had in mind when initially started sketching.

Then I read a little more

A few interpretations suggest the 'virgin daughter of Judah' is a either a city or the Jewish people- there is also an interesting story of Judah mistakenly having sex* and bearing twins with his daughter in law- whose bloodline eventually spawned a certain Jesus of Nazareth


*well she was dressed as a harlot at the time, she was punished by burning, he got off scot free.

Anyway, here is the "daughter" being crushed as in a wine press by the lord


Suburbanbanshee said...

You don't mention that Tamar wasn't actually burnt, but presented tokens to prove her innocence instead.

"But when she was led to execution, she sent to her father in law, saying, "By the man to whom these things belong, I am with child. See whose ring, and bracelet, and staff this is."

"And he, acknowledging the gifts, said, "She is juster than I, because I did not give her to Sela, my son." However, he knew her no more."

Judah realized that what she'd done was her legal right, in order to get a son for her dead husband.

(Because even if brothers kept dying, she had the right to demand a son from any of the guys in the family. Picking Judah was an extra stab, because he'd been so blind to her rights and his own dead son's rights that he hadn't recognized her when having sex with her.)

Tamar is a heroine, because she followed the law. Even if that meant doing weird things, for the sake of the rights of a husband whom we're told was so evil that he was slain by God.

That's why the Lord is on her side, smiting Onan and ordaining that she bear twins. Her crazy and kindly deed for a bad man parallels the kindness of Jesus in dying for humanity, even though humanity killed Him. So she fits into the lineage of the House of David nicely.

The other moral of the story is that it's easier to give people their rights than to force them to dress up as harlots and steal your stuff.

PullingpIctures said...

Very interesting! I should have researched this one more. Thanks for that superbanshee