Studies in the Bible and Jewish Thought

By Moshe Greenberg | Go to book overview
Save to active project

Biblical Attitudes Toward Power: Ideal and Reality in Law and Prophets

Throughout the Torah ("the Law") and the Prophets, the relation between God and humanity is bedeviled by the issue of power.1 Tension inheres in the conception that while God has dominion in heaven and earth he has made man in his image and given him dominion over the earth and its resources.

YHWH our Lord,
How majestic is your name throughout the earth,
You who have covered the heavens with your splendor!...
When I behold your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and stars that you set in place,
what is man that you have been mindful of him,
mortal man that you have taken note of him,
that you have made little less than divine,
and adorned him with glory and majesty;
You have made him master over your handiwork,
laying the world at his feet. ( Ps. 8:2, 4-7)

Competition between the two dominions pervades the opening stories of the book of Genesis. Adam and Eve transgressed God's ban in the hope that they would become "like divine beings." A later generation planned to build a tower whose top would reach heaven. The Pharaoh of the Exodus, when commanded by God to let the Israelites worship, retorts insolently, "Who is YHWH that I should obey him? I do not recognize YHWH nor shall I let Israel go!" ( Exod. 5:2). The stories show a keen awareness of the pitfalls along the way of a human


Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this page

Cited page

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Studies in the Bible and Jewish Thought
Table of contents

Table of contents



Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 462

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?