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Title: Abraham's seed and Isaac as promise : a study of Hebrews 2,16 and 11,11 in the context of Hebrews 11,18-19
Authors: Swetnam, James
Keywords: Bible. Hebrews -- Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Bible. Old Testament -- Biography
Abraham (Biblical patriarch)
Issue Date: 2005
Publisher: Faculty of Theology, University of Malta
Citation: Swetnam, J. (2005). Abraham's seed and Isaac as promise : a study of Hebrews 2,16 and 11,11 in the context of Hebrews 11,18-19. Melita Theologica, 56(1), 53-60.
Abstract: A previous article in this journal presented a case for interpreting the ultimate "seed" (sperma) of Abraham in Heb 11,18 as the risen Christ. l That is to say, the physical Isaac whom Abraham received back as though risen from the dead was the symbolic foreshadowing of the actually risen Christ and as such was viewed by the author of Hebrews. Thus, only with the resurrection of Christ was fully realized the prophecy made to Abraham in Gen 21,12 (cited in Heb 11,18): "In Isaac will your seed be named"). The basic reason for this is that in Heb 11,19 Isaac is received back "as a symbol" in the context of Abraham's thinking about possible resurrection from the dead. Given the role of Christ's resurrection from the dead in Hebrews, the inference is that the author of Hebrews had the risen Jesus in mind. Thus Hebrews coincides with Paul's view in Gal 3,16 that the seed promised to Abraham is indeed Christ.2 The word sperma is used in two other places in Hebrews, 2,16 and 11,11, and in both places the context is of Abraham. The present article will attempt to sketch the implications of the fact that Christ is the ultimate seed of Abraham with regard to the use of spenna in Heb 2,16 and 11,11. In addition, the relevance of Galatians with regard to the sperma of Abraham will also be examined.
Appears in Collections:MT - Volume 56, Issue 1 - 2005
MT - Volume 56, Issue 1 - 2005

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