By John R. Levison
Containing meticulous, updated scholarship but written in a flowing, stress-free sort, this entire e-book takes readers on a trip via a panoramic array of literary texts, encompassing the literature of Israel, early Judaism, the Greco-Roman global, and the hot testomony. John R. Levison’s ability with old texts — already proven in his acclaimed The Spirit in First-Century Judaism — is right here prolonged to a myriad of alternative expressions of the Spirit in antiquity.
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Additional resources for Filled with the Spirit
They die and return to their dust. . You send forth your spirit. . They are created . . You renew the face of the ground. 13 13. Hebrew: tastir pdnekd tosep ruham weel-'apdrdm yelubun tesallah ruhdkd yibbdreun uthaddes pene 'dddma 25 ISRAELITE LITERATURE Along with a crystalline poetic ordering, there is in these few lines a con centrated cluster of allusions to the creation and curses of adam. This is not surprising, as the psalm in its entirety consists of praise of God as cre ator. What is remarkable is the creative reimagining that occurs in the brief compass of these few lines.
In his hand is the life [nephesh] of every living thing and the spirit [ruach] of every human being. (Job 12:7-10) This is another instance of the association that is drawn between spirit and physical life. The parallel between the life, the nephesh, of every living be ing and the spirit of every human being, both of which are in the hand of God, is quite like the association of the breath God inbreathed at creation and the first human's becoming a living nephesh 8. This is not the only interpretation, of course.
What, in fact, does this distinction im ply? Did Israelites believe that the spirit which inspired Samson to slay en emies with the jawbone of an ass or ecstatic prophets to writhe upon the ground was not as physical as the breath within? I suspect we are discover ing yet again the presence of anachronism: the breath is an essentially physical term, while the spirit is a powerful nonphysical concept. More over, the implication of this bifurcation is that they are not one and the same spirit.