‘Anger Exhausted’ for the Sake of YHWH’s Name in Ezekiel 20: Did YHWH Really Relent from Wrath Poured Out on Israel?

In: Biblische Zeitschrift
Benjamin D. Giffone Department of Theology, LCC International University Kretingos g. 36, Klaipėda Lithuania
Department of Old and New Testament, Faculty of Theology, Stellenbosch University Western Cape South Africa

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It is typically argued that in Ezek 20:5–26 YHWH thrice proposes or purposes to “pour out his wrath” on Israel, but then instead “acts on account of his name” – relenting from or deferring judgment. This paper argues instead, based on grammatical structure and intertextuality with the Pentateuch, that in at least one of these instances (and possibly two), Ezek 20 describes YHWH actually “pouring out wrath” and “exhausting anger” on some Israelites. This reading offers a new dimension for understanding intergenerational responsibility in Ezekiel.

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