“The Use and Abuse of Power in Amos: Identity and Ideology”

Bibliographic Information: 

Timmer, Daniel C. “The Use and Abuse of Power in Amos: Identity and Ideology.”Journal for the Study of the Old Testament 39.1 (2014) 101-118.


Amos is notable for its critique of human claims to power within Israel as well as without. Intriguingly, Amos locates the resolution of such abuses of power in Yahweh's exercise of power as a cosmic king who eliminates some groups from among the nations and from within Israel while creating a new relationship between Yahweh and the remnants of both groups. Using an approach that gives priority to the semantic coherence of the text over its lesser diachronic features, this article explores these dynamics with attention to the criteria according to which Yahweh delivers one group and punishes another. It closes by pondering how the book of Amos itself should be subjected to ideological critique.

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