Longman, God Is a Warrior: Coming to Terms with Divine Violence in the Old Testament
Lecture Listening Guides
by David Capes
Lecturer: Tremper Longman
Title: “God Is a Warrior: Coming to Terms with Divine Violence in the Old Testament”
Prepared by Dr. John Beukema
- Where is the first place God is explicitly called a warrior in the Old Testament?
- If 49 of the 150 Psalms are written in the context of actual warfare, what is the danger of spiritualizing them?
- Why is it significant that only two Old Testament books do not speak of God as a warrior?
- Of the two evangelical approaches (Boyd and Copan) to explaining away God as warrior, why does Longman view Boyd’s as most troubling?
- Longman lists several problems with Boyd’s approach. Which one seems to be the most significant and why?
- What can be lost when the divine violence passages are read in as positive a light as possible?
- While the theme of God as warrior is pervasive in Old Testament, where does it also appear in the New Testament?
- What is the nature of Herem warfare according to Deuteronomy 20?
- How was God’s special presence made known on the battlefield, and what impact does that have on the troops and weaponry needed?
- In what way does David’s speech to Goliath reflect what Longman calls “Warrior Theology”?
- What are the five phases of a warfare theology that unfold from Genesis to Revelation?
- What is the purpose of divine violence against the people of God?
- How does the depiction of Christ in Revelation 19:11ff reflect Old Testament micro-allusions and quotations of YHWH as warrior?
- What is the one coherent story of God’s battle and ultimate victory against evil?
- How can Old Testament violence be a preview of end-time ethics when the wicked are punished and justice is carried out?
- How is it possible for the wrath of God to be a legitimate tool for evangelism?
- When is the use of violence sinful in defense of the church or the interests of the gospel?
- According to Longman, how can we discern whether a natural disaster is divine judgement?
- How is divine violence any different than Islamic jihad?
- When does Longman feel it could be appropriate for a Christian to pray in an imprecatory manner?