2 Maccabees 14:35


32 When they declared on oath that they did not know where the man was whom he wanted, 33 he stretched out his right hand toward the sanctuary, and swore this oath: "If you do not hand Judas over to me as a prisoner, I will level this shrine of God to the ground and tear down the altar, and build here a splendid temple to Dionysus." 34 Having said this, he went away. Then the priests stretched out their hands toward heaven and called upon the constant Defender of our nation, in these words: 35 "O Lord of all, though you have need of nothing, you were pleased that there should be a temple for your shekinah* among us; 36 so now, O holy One, Lord of all holiness, keep undefiled forever this house that has been so recently purified."

Matthew 18:20

New Testament

19 Again, I tell you the truth, if two of you on earth agree about whatever you ask, my Father in heaven will do it for you. 20 For where two or three are assembled in my name, I am there among them.” 21 Then Peter came to him and said, “Lord, how many times must I forgive my brother who sins against me? As many as seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “Not seven times, I tell you, but seventy-seven times! 23 “For this reason, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his slaves.

 Notes and References

"... The term shekhinta, in Hebrew Shekhinah (“dwelling,” “[Divine] presence”), is quite common in the Aramaic translations of the Hebrew Bible (Targumim) and in other parts of rabbinic literature. It originates from the idea of God’s dwelling in a sanctuary, especially the Jerusalem Temple, and is based on longstanding biblical traditions, but the term itself is perhaps first attested in the Greek text of 2 Maccabees 14:35. God’s dwelling, however, was not imagined as limited to the Temple, particularly at times when there was no functioning temple. The Divine presence was attributed also to other contexts, such as a gathering of judges or of small groups of people, not necessarily in a liturgical setting. One of the best-known expressions of this idea is found in Mishnah tractate Avot (3:2), which reads, “But two who are sitting together and there are words of Torah [spoken] between them, the Divine Presence [Shekhinah] rests with them.” This and similar sayings find an interesting analogy in the New Testament: “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them” (Matthew 18:20). Despite the differences, there seem to be profound connections between the different sayings, beyond a common basis in the Hebrew Bible ..."

Sievers, Joseph Shekhinah and Matthew 18:20 (pp. 25-39) Claritas Journal of Dialogue and Culture, Vol 6., No. 1, 2017

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