Why are the elohim (angels) equal to human judges?

by I_love_Jeff 5 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • I_love_Jeff

    According the Jehovah's Witnesses, Psalm 82:1 (Watchtower Library 2012) human judges are equal to angels?????

    When you hit the astrick, JW interpretation states:

    Or, “godlike ones.” Heb., ‘elo-him’;

    LXXV gc, “gods”; Sy, “angels”;

    T, “judges.”

    So what about Psalm 8:5? Irrelevant???? LOLOL!!!

  • The Fall Guy
    The Fall Guy

    According to a Hebrew concordance, elohim can be translated in any of the following ways - dependent on the context of course:

    Perhaps "works or special possessions of God" would be more appropriate.

      1. rulers, judges

      2. divine ones

      3. angels

      4. gods

    1. (plural intensive - singular meaning)

      1. god, goddess

      2. godlike one

      3. works or special possessions of God

      4. the (true) God

      5. God

  • peacefulpete

    It's a great example of an ancient text becoming adapted to the need of the moment. However, attempts to cast the text in a monotheistic setting have failed to be convincing. The writer was originally referring to El Shaddai the father and king of the pantheon of gods of Canaan, the god of the Patriarchs. This passage clearly does not have humans or the later invention of angels in mind. The threat of becoming 'like humans' as a punishment for failing to govern with compassion should make that clear. Ancient poems and verses like this one were eventually reinterpreted as referring to sub-god spirits or even humans centuries after their composition. The nations of Israel and Judah gradually and with much bloodshed shifted from polytheism in which (El Shaddai was king and father of lesser gods) to henotheism (Yahweh son of El became patron deity) to monotheism (Yahweh is only deity). There are many such texts in the OT.

  • I_love_Jeff

    @The Fall Guy-All that is fine and dandy but it does not explain why the Jehovah's Witnesses are placing human judges under the same category as elohim-Psalm 8:5 contradicts their viewpoint. Also, there are no texts in the Hebrew Bible that call Israel’s judges Elohim.

  • Finkelstein

    Truthful and honest answer = because they are not academically trained bible scholars , there never was one in this organization, they've been taught bible scholarly from each other.

    Good explanation Peaceful Pete

  • peacefulpete

    Ps82 ends with verse 8 reading:

    "Arise gods, govern the earth, possess all nations"

    Modern translations don't accurately convey the Hebrew in context. .

    Another famous passage at Deut 32:8,9 draws the same image. The pantheon of gods assemble as sons of EL and he assigns nations to each one to govern. There Yahweh is assigned the sons of Jacob (aka Israel).

    When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance,
    when he divided all mankind,
    he set up boundaries for the peoples
    according to the number of the sons of god.[a]
    9 For Yahweh's portion is his people,
    Jacob his allotted inheritance.

    This passage is dealt with on this thread by Narkissos

    Son of God" -- some background.

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