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Am עם

(1,047 words)

Author(s): C. L. Seow
I. Name ʿAm(m) occurs widely as a theophoric element in Semitic proper names, although in the cuneiform texts it is not ordinarily marked by the determinative indicating divinity. Among the names that are commonly classified as “Amorite”, there are over two hundred with ʿAmm as an element. This represents by far the largest group; but ʿAm(m)-names are also attested in epigraphic Arabic (Qatabanian, Safaitic, and Thamudic), Hebrew, Ugaritic, Old Aramaic, Phoenician, Punic, Ammonite, Moabite, and, perhaps, Eblaite. Occurrences of the deity ʿAm(m) in the Hebrew Bible are limite…


(1,122 words)

Author(s): C. L. Seow
I. Name Lim occurs as a theophoric element in numerous personal names, primarily from northern Syria in the second millennium bce. Attestations of Lim as a divine name in the Bible, though suggested, are highly dubious. II. Identity Among the bearers of Lim-names are Ti-ša/šè-Li-im, who is identified in an Eblaite text as “the queen of Emar” (MEE 2, 351), I-bi-iṭ-Li-im, an Eblaite king ( MAIS [1967–1968], ll. 2.9.26), ni-ši-Li-im, an Ensi from Tuttul in the Ur III-period ( AfO. 19 [1959–60] 120:18), and several individuals of the Lim-Dynasty at Mari (Gelb 1980). Despite the prese…

Face פנים

(2,243 words)

Author(s): C. L. Seow
I. Name In quite a number of biblical texts the pānîm of YHWH is YHWH’s hypostatic Presence. Thus it serves the same function as Šēm‘Name’ in Deuteronomistic theology, Kābôd‘Glory’ in the Priestly tradition, and Shekinah in later Jewish writings. By recourse to such concepts, the ancient Israelites were able to speak of the deity’s simultaneous transcendence and immanence. II. Identity Elsewhere in the ancient Near East, pan ‘face’ or ‘presence’ is also used in the sense of the persona or some representation of deity. So the goddess Tannit is frequently …

Torah תורה

(1,182 words)

Author(s): C. L. Seow
I. Name The word Torah is usually connected with the root yrh, which means “to point, direct, teach” in the Hiphil conjugation. If so, the noun properly means “instruction, teaching, direction”. Since Torah is used most frequently of specific cultic instructions, as well as the demands of the covenant, however, it is translated as nomos in Greek, hence Eng. “law”. Inasmuch as the word commonly refers to “the Torah of Moses” and “the book of the Torah of Moses” (the Pentateuch), one may think of the Torah as “law” in the sense of the covenant commun…