In this study, we delve into the recurring phrase גוי גדול, “goy gadol,” or “Great Nation.” This phrase, appearing 18 times in the biblical text, is pivotal to understanding the unique role and identity of Israel as envisioned in the Scriptures.

We explore the specific references to Abram/Abraham and his descendants, the people of Israel, as a “Great Nation.” Our discussion not only highlights the passages where this and related ideas are mentioned but also offers a deeper analysis of the biblical writers’ perspective on what constitutes greatness for a nation.

Key questions we address include:

  • What attributes made Israel a “Great Nation” according to the biblical narrative?
  • How does Israel’s portrayal as “great” differ from other nations similarly described?
  • What significance does Israel’s greatness hold for the nations of the world?
  • How is Israel’s greatness recognized and understood globally?


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Download and Print John “Baruch” Perry’s Teaching Notes