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Home Food for Thought RELIGION Abraham the Patriarch

Abraham the Patriarch

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Abraham

The original form of the name, Abram, is apparently the Assyrian Abu-ramu. It is doubtful if the usual meaning attached to that word "lofty father", is correct. The meaning given to Abraham in Genesis 17:5 is popular word play, and the real meaning is unknown. The Assyriologist, Hommel suggests that in the Minnean dialect, the Hebrew letter HĂȘ ("h") is written for long a. Perhaps here we may have the real derivation of the word, and Abraham may be only a dialectical form of Abram.

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Viewpoint of New Testament

The generation of Jesus Christ is traced back to Abraham by St. Matthew, and though in Our Lord's genealogy, according to St. Luke, he is shown to be descended according to the flesh not only from Abraham but also from Adam, still St. Luke shows his appreciation of the fruits of descent from Abraham by attributing all the blessings of God on Israel to the promises made to Abraham. This he does in the Magnificat, iii, 55, and in the Benedictus, iii, 73. Moreover, as the New Testament traces the descent of Jesus Christ from Abraham,......

In the light of profane history

One is inclined to ask, when considering the light which profane history may shed on the life of Abraham: Is not the life of the patriarch incredible? That question may be, and is, answered in different ways, according to the point of view of the questioner. Perhaps it will not be without interest to quote the answer of Professor Driver, an able and representative exponent of moderate critical views:......

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