Thursday, January 12, 2017

An implication of the imago dei

I must point out that nowhere in the Old Testament is Yahweh referred to explicitly gōʾēl haddām, but Zechariah’s cry for Yahweh “to see and avenge” (yēreʾ yhwh wəyidrōš) and the psalmist’s identification of the Lord as the avenger of shed/poured out/spilt blood (dōrēš dāmîm) indicates that Yahweh was understood to fulfill this role.

What does this reveal about Yahweh’s relationship to humanity? If he is indeed the divine blood avenger, then he is humanity’s nearest kin. Hu-man beings are members of his clan and are, therefore, kin to one another. For this reason shedding human blood (šōpek dam hāʾadam) is fratricide. Furthermore, to murder one’s kinsman is to slay a member of God’s family.—The "Image of God" in the Garden of Eden, page 121

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