Remember when I was playing with biblical weaponry and speculated on a muddy, probably-impossible-to-prove distinction between rhomphaia and machaira as divine and human swords, respectively? You have suggestive uses like the cherubim wielding a rhomphaia to keep people out of the garden; you have an explicit contrast in Ezekiel’s doom against Egypt between the machaira Pharaoh wields and the rhomphaia God will give to Babylon; but mostly you have an unclear mixture of the two throughout the Old Testament. It feels to me like there’s an idea lurking behind it all but much too obscure and inconsistent to do much with it.
Well, enter the New Testament.
New Testament authors refer to swords 36 times and there is a very strong pattern indeed. Here’s a quick list, with commentary to follow. Continue reading Rhomphaia in the New Testament