CHESED = Grace

Thu Jan 17 21:46:45 EST 2002

>From: "Christine Bass" <christinebass at>
>To: Biblical Hebrew <b-hebrew at>
>Subject: Re: CHESED=Grace
>Date: Wed, 16 Jan 2002 13:27:02 -0500

>The understanding I have of the word chesed is that it is translated as
>grace, mercy or lovingkindness.
>From "The Place of Faith and Grace in Judaism" by David R.Blumenthal.

Rabbi Blumenthal is one of my professors at Emory University, and he 
is an excellent teacher and writer.  In class once, we discussed the 
concept of grace in Judaism, and most of the students seemed to 
associate the idea of grace with Christianity.  When I discussed this 
on the soc.culture.jewish list, most of the posters seemed to think 
grace is a foreign concept.  One of my lasting impressions of Jewish 
mysticism is that, in the sefirotic system, when CHESED (grace) flows 
with GEVURAH (judgement), it comes out TIFERET (mercy).  

>Christine Bass

----- Original Message -----
From: "George Athas" <gathas at>
To: "Biblical Hebrew" <b-hebrew at>
Sent: Wednesday, January 16, 2002 5:52 AM
Subject: CHESED

> > The second question might refer to a different word altogether--khesed,
> > which is notoriously difficult to translate into English but probably
> > rendered both as "righteousness" and "charity" in English versions. It
> > often understood as something like "covenant faithfulness," but I don't
> > know that that really captures the sense either.
> It's not that hard to translate CHESED into English. I go for either
"commitment" or "devotion".
> Best regards,
> (Sydney, Australia)

Cindy Smith		I have further observed under the sun that
cms at		The race is not won by the swift,
cms at		Nor the battle by the valiant;
cms at	Nor is bread won by the wise,
			Nor wealth by the intelligent,
Me transmitte sursum,	Nor favor by the learned.
	Caledoni!		-- JPS Ecclesiastes 9:11

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