Covenant Law in the Transformation ofthe Culture of Violence and Revenge: An Interpretation of 2 Kgs 14: 5-6 in the Context of the 1994 Rwanda Genocide
Ahimbisibwe, Wasswa Israel
Doctor of Philosophy
If a Hebrew Biblical text could motivate eighth century B.C.E Israelite society to move a away from the horrendous practice of violence and blood revenge, isn't it possible that the same text can motivate a twenty first century society to move away from the crisis of revenge and genOCide, especially since the religious beliefs of the latter society are derived from the basic concepts of that particular text? The chief objective of this study is to analyze a Hebrew Biblical text, that is 2 Kgs 14: 5-6 and its basic tenets that are enshrined in covenant law that will prevent future mass atrocity. I support the view that religious inSights that encourage the welfare of people should be embraced not because they are an authoritarian imposition from above, but because they are able to develop a coherent correlation between experience and morals, especially public morals, the relationship between a person and his neighbor. Argued from a context of genocide, the study lays in detail how covenant law is revolutionary in the innovation of justice thereby transforming societies from the impulse of vengeance and violence. In essence, it is a study that combines biblical studies (rooted in biblical theology) and African studies and how it contributes to solving a pressing contemporary problem.