Pantokreator a 24 starcov, Chartres

Furious avenger

A survey of the usage of the Hebrew root nqm with emotional nuance as an attribute of God

Nah 1,2The wrath of God in religious history, is associated with punishment for those who commit great iniquity. Such a tradition already existed in Babylonian writings, and the biblical tradition draws on this. The Bible speaks of a wrathful, jealous and vindictive God. These attributes engender a rather negative image of God in the modern reader. In times of war, genocide and blood revenge, talking about “God the avenger” could appear dangerous but on the other hand it presents a timely warning. If understood judiciously and with great sensitivity, it prevents confusion. The paper focuses on the specific meaning of the Hebrew root נקם nqm (revenge) in seven texts in which God has characteristic emotional anger. Its aim is to present the importance of this biblical characteristic “the furious avenger God” and to draw attention to the meaning of the selected texts for the modern reader.

Keywords: נקם, vengeance of God, fury, wrath of God, Old Testament, divine attributes