Hebrew Bible

  1. Jamnia
    Took up issues with certain parts of the bible(Esther, Song of Solomon, Ecclesiastes.) 20 years before this, Jews banned from the land, Roman Diaspora. Jews try to codify the religion in some way because with the Diaspora the religion could change when people split up.
  2. Ezra
    First attempt at a system of organizing and collecting these books. Ezra was first to put these books together
  3. TaNaK
    How Jews refer to scripture. Refer to their three-fold division of scripture. Torah ("Teaching", also known as the Five Books of Moses), Nevi'im ("Prophets") and Ketuvim ("Writings")
  4. Pseudepigrapha
    books written by someone other than who is attributed to writing them, false authors.
  5. Apocrypha
    means “hidden.” There was reverence for these books. Dead Sea Scrolls. Catholics add 7 of these books written from 200BC to 100CE. This practice started under Augustine, who read a Latin Bible, which became the Bible of many Christians. Catholic became the Latin Church. Written by unknown authors.
  6. tells
    A civilization is destroyed by battle or the weather, so the next civilization goes right on top of it. Look for mounds and you can go through layers of civilizations, acts sort of like a timeline by dating using pottery. Joshua 8:28 he burned something and made it into a _____.
  7. Major Archaeological Finds
    Enuma Elish, Gilgamesh Epic, Hammurabi’s law code, Amarna Tablets, Merneptah Stele, Sheshonq Inscription, the Black Obelisk, Sennacherib’s Prism
  8. J. Wellhausen says that the Mosaic history is the starting point for the history of Judaism, not the history of Ancient Israel. Explain
    • Jews become the people of the book, more beholden to law (Torah). Ancient Israel did not really have laws, they were a liberal people. If you wanted to perform a sacrifice you could just do it, there was not really a “priesthood” then. God was not so wrathful at that time. If you had a sacrifice it was just a meal, you would just “invite Jehovah” to your meal.” Wrote this around the Enlightenment who saw priests as corrupt.
    • Wellhausen argued that the books of the Torah were the combination of four “documents” labeled J for the Yahwist, who emphasizes Yahweh as the name for God; E for the Elohist, who preferred El/Elohim as the divine name; D for the Deuteronomist, whose document is essentially equal to the book of Deuteronomy, and P for a collection of materials that have characteristics typical of priestly thought and affairs. Wellhausen insisted that the chronological sequence of these documents was unquestionably from earliest to latest (JEDP) and that they reflected the evolutionary development of the faith and culture of Israel. He maintained that each document imposed on its sources the faith and customs of Israel at the time it was written -- J the period of the early United Monarchy about 980 BCE, E about a century later. D was the distillation of seventh century prophetic ethics and religion, and P the fully developed Priestly/cultic religion of postextilic times.
  9. 2 schools of biblical archaeology
    • 1) Biblical Archaeology: WF Albright. stratigraphy, the reconstruction of the history of a site, period by period, by uncovering its occupational layers or strata one by one in the reverse order of their being deposited (tell). ceramic typology/pottery chronology, the skill of recognizing and charting changes in pottery styles and then correlating these styles with similar styles from Egypt and Mesopotamia where ancient records had established fixed chronology points by astronomical references. Focused on confirming the events of the bible. 
    • 2) New Biblical Archaeology: focused more on understanding the lives of the average people at the time of biblical events, not the actual events themselves. They are less interested in confirming biblical history and more concerned with extrapolating upon the information the bible already provides
  10. Enuma Elish
    • Similar to Genesis 1. recited on the fourth day of the Babylonian new year festival. Story of the birth of the gods and the creation of humankind in a well-ordered universe. The priestly biblical and Babylonian Enuma Elish follow essentially the same order.
    • void/chaos > light > heavens/sky > waters gathered/earth formed > light bodies (stars) > humans made (God's image, or to serve gods) > banquet/day of rest
  11. Gilgamesh Epic
    Clay tablet, 3rd millennia BCE. Babylonian account of the great flood. Obvious similarity between this and the Genesis account of the flood. Structures of the stories and many details are the same. Both stories are part of larger narratives dealing with the reality of sin and judgment - narratives that evidence early concerns with fundamental human questions to which no simple answer can be given. Both bring into focus the dilemma between destruction and redemption.
  12. Hammurabi's Law Code
    1700BC, stele with Babylonian king, Hammurabi, receiving the symbols of authority from the sun god Shamash. parallels between this code and exodus (eye for an eye)
  13. Amarna Tablets
    written around 14th century BCE? Talks about a group called the Hapiru (Hebrews?) invading Canaan. In stone. Don’t just fade away or decompose like papyrus. Cuneiform. Discovered at tell el Amarna. 4th century BC. Letters from Palestine to Egyptian pharaoh asking for help with marauders in the land destroying their civilization. These marauders are described as HBRW (Hebrews?).
  14. Egyptians
    Word “Egypt” is a Greek word for this place, means “two lands” because upper and lower Egypt. Most lived along the Nile (flows 4000 miles), which was a ribbon of green. Widens to a lush delta 160 miles wide, where we find the Israelites.
  15. Philistines
    Sea people. Some sort of superiority on iron and therefore better weaponry gave them an advantage over the Israelites. Settled on the Gaza strip. 5 cities (Ekron, Ashdod, Ashkelon, Gaza, Gath). Dagon is their chief deity of the west Semitic pantheon. There are gods that rule certain regions. Yahweh is said to reign everywhere (NOT just the god of the hills, where Baal is the god of the valley. In the Gaza strip there is Dagon). Baal-zebub (Lord of the flies), mice were associated with the worship of him, which are around flies…? They steal the Ark of the Covenant, and place it in front of their statue of Dagon, who then falls down in homage.
  16. Ammonites
    More to the north on the east bank. Descendants of Lot and his younger daughter. Ancestors of Benjamin (amin à ammonites). Milcom (1 King 11?). Generally tended to be treated like the Canaanites. Circumcision. Polytheists
  17. Moabites
    Moabite stone, king mesha exalts his autonomy here after his….? Kemosh was their god, warrior god and chief god. Polytheists. 582 they were destroyed. El-Shaday (Almighty god), highest god, god of the assembly of gods. Numbers 22-4. Balaam was an important prophet to them. Vision of a frightening event has been commemorated on the wall of something, he was some sort of seer.
  18. Edomites
    Descendents of Esau. Dwelled in a sandy reddish clay land that was not good for farming. Treated as nomads, never really a threat to the Jewish people or a great nation. Eventually they fall during the time of the Babylonians. Herod, an edomite, was king during Jesus’ time. Worshipped a god known as Qos. Thought of this as a genuine manifestation of the God of Israel. Possibly monotheistic or henotheistic, but we do not know of other gods they had.
  19. two most common dates for the Exodus
    • 1450-1350 B.C.E. (Amarna Letters, 1 Kgs. 6:1, and Jud. 11:26)
    • 1300-1250 B.C.E. (Ex.1:11 and Archaeology)
  20. 1450-1350 B.C.E. (Amarna Letters, 1 Kgs. 6:1, and Jud. 11:26)
    (kings)construction of Solomon’s Temple in the fourth year of his reign and in the four hundred eightieth year after the exodus from egypt. the fourth year of his reign was 960BCE. use this to calculate. (Judges) takes place over a long period of time, would not leave time/space for the later date.
  21. 1300-1250 B.C.E. (Ex.1:11 and Archaeology)
    Israelites worked construction of Raamses and Pithom (mentioned in Ex 1:11), which were built by Seti I (1308-1290) and Ramses II (1290-1224). Warlike destruction of several Canaanite cities in the late thirteenth century may be related to Israel’s entrance into Canaan under Joshua. An inscription from the fifth year of Pharaoh Merneptah (1224-1216) celebrates an Egyptian campaign into Canaan, and mentions Israel among the peoples encountered there, meaning Israelites had settled in Canaan by 1220.
  22. Hyksos Kings
    They think Hyksos refers to foreign rulers, not shepherd kings like they previously thought. From the Palestinian region, Semitic. Bay (bah) rose to become chancellor of the entire land. Took over Canaan and parts of northern Egypt in about 1700 BCE.
  23. Amenhotep IV
    Reigned 1370-1353 BCE. Proponent of the sun god Aton, changed his own name to Akhnaton (Splendor of Aton). Revolution. Conflict between high priests of Egypt and him over who this head god should be. He moved the capital to the lower part of Egypt.
  24. Ramses II
    Pharaoh of the Exodus. Associated with the later date of the Exodus. Builds huge monuments and walls.
  25. Ark
    2 poles with 4 ringlets to allow 4 priests to carry it. Constantly on the move, would even take it into battle. Cherubim (see Ezekiel) on top representing the presence and throne of God. Kept in the tabernacle till Solomon built the Temple, then it was placed in the Holy of Holies. Priests could only enter once a year. Aaron’s rod, ten commandments, mana. Would carry into battle.
  26. annual feasts
    3. Passover of unleavened bread (Pesach-Mazzoth), the feast of weeks or fruitfirsts (Shabhouth), and the feast of ingathering or tabernacles (Succoth). agricultural connections.
  27. Sabbath
    “rest.” there is an old covenant (Moses) and new covenant. Certain things from the old covenant no longer apply today, like usury (interest on loans), “be fruitful and multiply”, sacrifices, keep holy the Sabbath (which day? How to keep it holy?)
  28. offerings
    burnt offerings, peace offerings, sin offerings, tribute or gift offering. three reasons, 1) to make a gift to Yahweh, 2) to enhance communion with Yahweh, 3) to atone for sin. Leviticus 1-7. Offer animals, grain, etc.
  29. Discuss Canaanite religion.
    • Land = Ugarit
    • Religion (El, Baal, Asherah, Anat, Yam, Mot, Lotan, Dagon, etc.): Had much to do with the cycle of nature. Depicted gods as the personified power of the drought of fertility. Rituals include orgies, sexual practices. Guys invent these religions, and they like sex. So… makes sense that their religion would include a lot of sex. New year festival. El, remote god, judgment, maybe à Allah? Baal, thunder/rain god. Elijah challenges him to a fight. Asherah, wife of El, Fertility.
    • Temples: Three fold distribution of temples. Horns on the altars (horns on the brazen altar mentioned in the Hebrew scriptures). Had offerings, burnt oxen, sheep, grain, all a priestly function.
    • Child Sacrifice: Considered particularly heinous, especially in Ezekiel and Hebrew scripture. Monument with a ritual on it that shows child sacrifice. Phoenicians had cemeteries with children who were sacrificed to the gods. In Carthage, this had to do with taking a vow.
  30. Describe the meaning of the term shophet and the cycle depicted in the book of Judges
    • Shophet: Hebrew “judge, deliverer, one who sets things right, one who rules”. military heroes. charismatics. not elected, but both civil and military rulers.
    • cycle: Children of Israel or some tribe in particular sins against the Lord. God brings down his wrath in the form of some tribute or some people are just slaughtered. Then they repent of their ways. They must wait because they don’t have a king, then God raises someone up. As long as the judge is alive, the people live well. 12 judges, only 6 named.
  31. Gen 1:1-2:4a
    Priestly creation liturgy.
  32. Ex. 3
    Moses and the burning bush. “I AM who AM” fullness of being. Yahweh.
  33. Ex. 20
    The 10 commandments.
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Hebrew Bible