menu

Scroll with curses

Scroll with curses April 20, 2010

Zechariah’s flying scroll is written with curses.  Another place where curses are written down is Numbers 5, the jealousy test for a woman suspected of adultery.  The verb “cut off” or “purged” ( naqah ) in Zechariah 5:3 is also used in Numbers 5, to describe the status of the woman who has passed the jealousy test: She is “free” of guilt (Numbers 5:19) and “free” to bear children (5:28).

Zechariah’s flying scroll is a jealousy test.  It flies over the face of the land, enters the houses of thieves and those who swear falsely.  It will expose their unfaithfulness, cause a swelling of the belly and a withering of the thing, and will bring curses to the house.

Recognizing that Numbers 5 is in the background helps to link the two visions of Zechariah 5.  First, the scroll with curses enters houses, exposes infidelity; then the woman Wickedness, exposed by the jealousy test, is sent away.


Browse Our Archives