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Old Testament Essays

versión On-line ISSN 2312-3621
versión impresa ISSN 1010-9919

Old testam. essays vol.22 no.1 Pretoria  2009


The violent, rhetorical-ideological God of Nahum



Leonard Mare; Johan Serfontein

University of Johannesburg





This article tries to identify YHWH in the violent text of Nahum as a character and a construct of the ideology of society. God's acts of violence are depicted in a way that reflects the socio-cultural background of the author and his society. Therefore God is violent and chauvinistically gender-ideological. Suggestions are made to consider the options and solutions that a "counter-reading " brings to the problem. A counter-reading challenges the reader to empathise with the pain of the victims and to put modern faces to it. In reading this way readers would be able to act in the world around them in ways that would help to construct a more passive (as opposed to violent) and compassionate image of God.



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Dr. Leonard P Maré
Senior Lecturer, Department of Semitic Languages
University of Johannesburg

Past. Johan Serfontein
5de Laan 92, Boston, Bellville, 7530



1 In this article reference to God will be in lowercase when referring to "god as a construct". The word will be in uppercase when referring to that God a person wishes to know, theologises about and worships.

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