The Glossary of Terms

Peniel or Penuel


Harper’s Bible Dictionary

edited by Paul J. Achtemier (San Francisco: Harper and Row, 1985)

You are strongly recommended to add to your library the excellent revised edition of Harper's Bible Dictionary titled, The Harper Collins Bible Dictionary, Revised Edition [book review], edited by Paul J. Achtemeier, with the Society of Biblical Literature (NY: Harper Collins, 1996). It is currently the best one-volume Bible dictionary in English, and it is available at Border's Books, Christian Science Reading Rooms,, or


Penuel. Penuel (or Peniel; Heb., ‘face of God’), a city located on the Jabbok (modern River Zerqa), east of the Jordan. Here Jacob wrestled with a ‘man’ (Gen. 32:24-31). Gideon was refused food by its inhabitants (Judg. 8:8-9) and later took revenge (Judg. 8:25). It was ‘built’ by Jeroboam (ca. 924-903 b.c.; 1 Kings 12:25) and is probably listed as one of the cities conquered by Pharaoh Shishak (ca. 922 b.c.). Commentators locate it at modern Tulul edh-Dhahab, particularly the eastern mound. In 1 Chron. 4:4 and 8:25 it is probably used as a personal name.


Edited for by Robert Nguyen Cramer