Daniel O. McClellan (author), Craig Broyles (thesis supervisor), Martin Abegg (second reader), Trinity Western University SGS (Degree granting institution)
This thesis has two primary goals: (1) to analyze the countours and extent of the generic category of deity in the Hebrew Bible, and (2) propose a semantic base for the term. It begins with a description of the fields associated with cognitive theory, and particularly cognitive linguistics. Chapter 2 examines the cognitive origins of notions of deity and discusses how this heritage is reflected within the biblical texts. The third chapter examines the conceptualization of Israel’s prototypical deity, YHWH, beginning from the earliest divine profiles detectable within the text. In Chapter 4 the discussion returns to the generic notion of deity, highlighting references within the biblical text to deities other than YHWH. The conclusion synthesizes the different sections of the thesis, sketching the origins and development of the Hebrew Bible’s representation of both prototypical and non-prototypical notions of deity. Implications for further research are then briefly discussed.