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Acta Theologica

versão On-line ISSN 2309-9089

Acta theol. vol.28 no.1 Bloemfontein Jun. 2008

 

Eunug in die antieke Nabye Ooste

 

Eunuch in the ancient Near East

 

 

M. Nel

Skool vir Bybelwetenskappe en Antieke Tale, Noordwes-Universiteit, Potchefstroom

 

 


Trefwoorde: Antieke Nabye Ooste, Eunug, Hofamptenaar, Gekastreerde


ABSTRACT

The Bible uses the term "eunuch" several times. The question arises as to the meaning of this term. In this article Biblical and extra-Biblical data are considered. It is argued that the Hebrew word, refers to a castrated man, and that, in biblical usage, it refers to a castrated man in terms of Israel's religion (Deut. 23:1; Is. 56:3). The term is used in a different sense when it refers to a foreign person, i.e. a person in an official capacity in a king's court (as in Gen. 37), or a military commander (as in 1 Kings 22:9; 2 Kings 8:7; 23:12; 25;19; Jer. 52:25). The reference to the Ethiopian eunuch in Acts 8 is also discussed, and the conclusion is drawn that refers to a foreign official visiting Jerusalem to worship, and not to a castrated man.

Keywords: Ancient near east, Eunuch, Palace official, Castrated person


 

 

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