From Joshua to the prophets
This particular period is instrumental in the development of prophecy as it goes beyond the messages and instead focuses on the development of concepts derived from the word itself.
These are the themes that appear within this body of work:
1. The oppression of the poor.
2. Close contact with neighboring nations;
a. New gods and how their mindset and doctrine influence both kingdoms. This the true nature of idolatry, the cult includes an indoctrination derived from attributes associated with foreign deities.
b. Apostasy and how it affects the official state cult;
The subsidized official cult and the levites are left to rot on the vine. Levites virtually starve during these periods. Frequent references to repairing the temple is really refering to maintaining the buildings and altars.
c. Alliances designed to enhance their security. Being located between neighboring empires is the cause of major problems for both kingdoms. One king would seek the help of one empire to aid him in defending his territory from another king, the problem being that there is no free lunch, there is an economic incentive to many campaigns such as that by the kings of Judah, Israel and Edom. Wheras a subjected king could have provided tribute, booty and economic concessions, the sacrifice of the heir to the moabite throne became the motive of anger against the king of Israel because he invited them and because the death of the prince could only give them limited spoils derived from the short-term destruction of Moab.
3. The reliance on costly chariots, horses, and armour. The reason for this is that Palestine is mostly mountainous and is not suited to cavalry chariots and heavy infantry, both of which are better suited to fighting on level ground. The topography of Palestine is better suited to ambush tactics by light infantry because the terrain itself will mask the movement of troops and provide the opportunity to shoot arrows, spears, slingshots and darts, and being able to get away without running the risks associated with a pitched battle. As in the case of the soviets, an arms race contributed to the demise of an empire, not by conquest but by bankrupcy.
The intermediate period.
The development of prophecy within this period focuses mainly on the restoration of the temple and the priesthood. This also includes the actions of leaders that inspire the people to support the rebuilding of the walls, the temple, and the infrastructue that will aid the economic recovery of Judea.
Nehemiah is another example of an individual whose usefulness is based on his background and willingness to take on challenges. As in he case of Daniel, his close proximity to the emperor made him aware of what it took to maintain an empire. He was in a position to observe firsthand projects devoted to infrastructure and others.
As in the case of the early judges, his leadership would inspire the inhabitants of Jerusalem and others from the surrounding areas in the rebuilding of the city walls which would save them from bandits. The rebuilding of the walls, along with rebuilding roads and other aspects related to infrastructure, would provide the basis for emigration of jews to palestine.