Covenant (KUHV-ih-nint) listen


  • n. The commitments between God and the Jewish people.

Example Sentences

  • "According to the covenant, God would offer protection and land to Abraham and his descendants, but they must follow the path of God." (source)

Languages of Origin

  • English

Who Uses This

  • Religious: Jews who are engaged in religious observance and have some Jewish education


  • North America


  • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).


  • "Tradition says that God made several covenants. The Torah tells of the covenant God makes with Abraham, promising him that he will be the patriarch of a great nation. In return, Abraham agrees that every male will be circumcised as a sign of this covenant. This ancient rite is still practiced today; Jewish males are circumcised in a ceremony known as brit milah, or 'the covenant of circumcision.' God also makes a covenant with Moses as he prepares to receive the Ten Commandments. God tells Moses: 'If you obey me faithfully and keep My covenant, you shall be treasured among all the peoples.' Many scholars regard acceptance of the teachings of the Ten Commandments as an example of the Israelites’ covenantal relationship with God. God also made a covenant with Noah, a non-Jew, after the Great Flood, giving him the Noahide Laws and promising never again to destroy the world. God created the rainbow as a sign of this covenant." (JPS)

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