Seeing God in His Temple: A Significant Theme in Israel’s Psalms


Temples, Israel Psalms, Biblical Studies


The Hebrew Bible, or the Old Testament, contains several episodes in which God appears to mortals. Such an appearance is called a theophany (from the Greek theophaneia, “God appearance”). Theophanies were not everyday occurrences, and passages such as Exodus 19:5–11 imply that they resulted from obedience, covenant keeping, and faithful devotion to God: “Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: . . . And the Lord said unto Moses, Go unto the people, and sanctify them to day and to morrow, . . . for the third day the Lord will come down in the sight of all the people upon mount Sinai ” (Exodus 19:5, 10–11).

Original Publication Citation

“Seeing God in His Temple: A Significant Theme in Israel’s Psalms,” in Ascending the Mountain of the Lord: Temple, Praise, and Worship in the Old Testament: The 42nd Annual Sidney B. Sperry Symposium (Provo: Religious Studies Center and Deseret Book, 2013), pp. 270–290.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL


Religious Studies Center




Religious Education


Ancient Scripture

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor