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Patterns of Sin in the Hebrew Bible – Metaphor, Culture, and the Making of a Religious Concept - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Patterns of Sin in the Hebrew Bible: Metaphor, Culture, and the Making of a Religious Concept

Joseph Lam


This book explores the construction of sin as a religious concept in ancient Israel by examining the dominant metaphors used to express the idea in the Hebrew Bible. Building on insights regarding metaphor derived from recent studies in linguistics and philosophy of language, the book identifies and describes four major patterns of metaphors for sin that permeate the biblical texts: sin viewed as a burden carried by the sinner; sin portrayed as an account kept by God in heaven; sin depicted as a path or direction in which one travels; and sin described as a stain or impurity in need of removal ... More

Keywords: sin, metaphor, Hebrew Bible, philosophy of language, conceptualization, religion

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780199394647
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2016 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199394647.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Joseph Lam, author
Assistant Professor, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill