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In God's Image

In God's Image
Myth, Theology, and Law in Classical Judaism


  • Date Published: April 2015
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107063273

£ 81.00

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About the Authors
  • The idea of creation in the divine image has a long and complex history. While its roots apparently lie in the royal myths of Mesopotamia and Egypt, this book argues that it was the biblical account of creation presented in the first chapters of Genesis and its interpretation in early rabbinic literature that created the basis for the perennial inquiry of the concept in the Judeo-Christian tradition. Yair Lorberbaum reconstructs the idea of the creation of man in the image of God (tselem Elohim) attributed in the Midrash and the Talmud. He analyzes meanings attributed to tselem Elohim in early rabbinic thought, as expressed in Aggadah, and explores its application in the normative, legal, and ritual realms.

    • Discusses the ancient basis for the idea of human dignity
    • Analyzes one of the most important religious and moral conceptions in the Judeo-Christian tradition
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    Reviews & endorsements

    '… I highly recommend his work. Although originally published in 2004 in Hebrew, the translation of Lorberbaum's work makes accessible to English speakers an extremely important and valuable work on the history of Imago Dei, Jewish thought, theology, and role in Jewish thought. Even beyond the primary scope of the book, there are many fine jewels and nuggets to discover for one's own work.' William Brown, The Biblical Review

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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2015
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107063273
    • length: 339 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 160 x 23 mm
    • weight: 0.6kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Anthropomorphism in Talmudic literature: trends in Jewish thought and scholarly research
    2. Anthropomorphism and imago dei – some basic distinctions
    3. Halakhah and Aggadah
    4. On terminology and methodology
    5. The four modes of judicial execution
    6. Image, likeness, and presence
    7. Murder and capital punishment: diminishing the divine image
    8. Procreation: 'an eternal building'
    9. From the Temple to humanity: transformation in the focus of holiness

  • Author

    Yair Lorberbaum, Bar-Ilan University, Israel
    Yair Lorberbaum is a Professor in the Faculty of Law at Bar-Ilan University, where he lectures on the philosophy of law, Jewish law, and Jewish thought. He has been a guest lecturer at Yale University, Cardozo Law School, Princeton University, and NYU Law School, and he has served as the Gruss Professor of Talmudic Law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Professor Lorberbaum's book The Image of God (Tselem Elohim): Halakhah and Aggadah (2004) was awarded the Goldstein-Goren Prize for the best book in Jewish thought for 2004–7.

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