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Arts and Humanities
Intro to the Old Testament: FSU Summer C
Terms in this set (65)
"hidden books" Books removed from the Old Testament by Protestants
official list of books compromising the Bible by a religious community
the Hebrew Bible
1. Torah = "Instruction" or "Law." "The five books of Moses." Also called the "Pentateuch."
2. Nevi'im = "Prophets."
3. Ketuvim = "Writings."
(different sections including a group of history books, wisdom books, poetry books and psalms).
the original promised land, before the modern day Israel, in the late second millenium BCE, named by the Egyptians, the usual designation for the territory promised to Abraham
Attributing human characteristics or qualities to objects, animals, or gods
grammatically singular or plural noun for "god" or "gods" in both modern and Biblical Hebrew.
A Greek word meaning "five books," referring to the first five books of the Old Testament.
The Primeval History
the Biblical narrative in the first eleven chapters of the first book, Genesis, covering from the beginning of history up to the birth of Abraham, and is followed by the Patriarchal age. i.e Wanderers, nomads, move about freely, Given the covenant that they will be given the land for their descendants, but they never really own the land.
The Patriarchal History
The people Israel believed themselves to be descendants of 3 great ancestors, or patriarchs: Abraham, his son Isaac, and his son Jacob. Their stories are told in the Patriarchal History. NOTE: there is no people Israel yet in the stories of Genesis. i.e Genesis 12-50; the 3 "fathers" of Judaism; Abraham; Issac, Jacob.
is the second major division of the OT, following the Pentateuch. Like the term "Pentateuch," "Deuteronomistic History" is a scholars term, not found in the biblical text itself. It designates the fact that these books belong together as a unit, long recognized by scholarship.
The Deuteronomistic History is composed of the books from Joshua through 2 Kings. i.e a modern theoretical construct holding that behind the present forms of the books of Deuteronomy and Joshua, Judges, Samuel, and Kings (the Former Prophets in the Hebrew canon) there was a single literary work.
the scroll of parchment on which the first five books of the Hebrew Scripture is written, Torah meaning instruction or Law.
* The five books of Moses are also called the Pentateuch
1008 AD, The oldest complete manuscript of the Old Testament; text of Hebrew Bible comes from this.
all priests are Levites, being selected from the tribe of Levi, but not all Levites are priests.
Those Levites who were not priests were assigned duties connected with the tabernacle. They assisted the priests, they prepared the cereal offerings , and they cared for the courts and the chambers of the sanctuary. Later, the Levites were involved in interpreting the law and thus functioned as teachers.
Patriarch who connects the stories of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Sold into slavery by his brothers, becomes vizier of Egypt. Father blesses him (not first born).
Joseph is Jacob's favorite (come on, everyone has one), so Jacob gives him a fancy coat. Oh, also, Joseph dreams of his brothers' sheaves bowing down to his sheaf. Then he goes and tells them about all about it.
Then Joseph dreams a second similar dream and blabs to everyone all about it.
His brothers are fuming at this point. Joseph's the second youngest of Jacob's children, so he definitely shouldn't be getting all this attention.
Joseph's brothers are pasturing their father's sheep at Shechem, when Israel sends Joseph out to meet up with his brothers and report back to him.
Joseph's brothers see him coming and conspire to kill him.
Plan A: they kill Joseph, then throw him into a pit and say some wild animals killed him.
Plan B: throw Joseph into a pit, but don't kill him.
When Joseph arrives near his brothers, they strip off his big fancy coat and throw him into a pit.
Meanwhile, the brothers are eating and see a group of Ishmaelite businessmen traveling from Gilead to Egypt.
Judah, one of Joseph's older brothers, suggests selling Joseph to the Ishmaelites so that technically they are not guilty of murder. Plus, they can make some money while they're at it.
And that's just what they do. The brothers sell Joseph to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver.
The brothers take Joseph's robe, kill a goat, dip the robe in the blood, and bring it to their father as if Joseph is dead. Jacob is upset, to say the least.
Meanwhile, the businessmen who bought Joseph take him to Egypt and sell him to one of the higher-ups in the Pharaoh's court, "the captain of the bodyguard"
*SEE JOSEPH CYCLE
Moses' successor who led the Israelites into the Promised Land.
After the death of Moses, God calls on Joshua to lead the Israelites across the Jordan River and take possession of the promised land. God guarantees victory in the military campaign and vows never to leave the Israelites so long as they obey his laws. The people swear their allegiance to Joshua, and he sends two spies across the river to investigate the territory. The men enter Jericho, where a prostitute named Rahab hides them in her home and lies to the city officials regarding the spies' presence. Rahab tells the spies that the Canaanites are afraid of Israel and its miraculous successes. Professing belief in the God of the Israelites, she asks for protection for her family when the Israelites destroy Jericho. The spies pledge to preserve Rahab and return to Joshua, telling him of the weakened condition of Israel's enemies.
The Israelites cross the Jordan River, led by a team of priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant. As the priests enter the water, the flow of the river stops and the Israelites cross the river on dry land. Arriving on the other side, the Israelites commemorate the miracle with an altar of twelve stones from the river bed (representing the twelve tribes of Israel). The people begin to eat the produce of the new land—thus halting the daily supply of manna—and the Israelite men perform the ritual of circumcision in preparation for battle.
Approaching Jericho, Joshua encounters a mysterious man who explains that he is the commander of God's army but that he is neither for nor against Israel. Joshua pays homage to the man and passes on. Following divine instructions, Joshua leads the Israelites in carrying the Ark around Jericho for six days. On the seventh day, the Israelites march around the city seven times. Joshua rallies them to conquer the city and kill everyone except for Rahab. They are to refrain from taking any of the city's religious items. At the sound of the Israelite war cry, the walls of Jericho collapse, and the Israelites destroy the city and its inhabitants.
Joshua's fame spreads throughout the land, but the Israelites are humiliated in their attempts to take the next city, Ai. God attributes the disaster to the disobedience of Achan, an Israelite who has stolen religious items from Jericho. After the people stone Achan, the renewed attempt against Ai is successful as Joshua masterminds an elaborate ambush against the city's forces. The Israelites celebrate by erecting an altar to God and publicly reaffirming their commitment to God's law.
Fearful of the marauding Israelites, the people of Gibeon visit the Israelite camp in disguise, claiming to be travelers in the land and requesting peace with Israel. Joshua does not inquire with God and makes a hasty treaty with the men, only to discover later that the Gibeonites are natives of the land to be conquered. The Israelites refrain from attacking the city, but five other local kings attack Gibeon for making peace with Israel. The Israelites come to Gibeon's aid and destroy the five armies. Joshua helps by commanding God to make the sun stand still during the fight. God listens and stops the sun's movement—the only time in history, we are told, when God obeys a human.
The Israelites continue to destroy the southern and northern cities of Canaan, killing all living inhabitants, as God has stipulated. While much of the promised land still remains to be conquered, the people of Israel begin to settle in the land, dividing it amongst the twelve tribes. After God gives Israel rest from its enemies for many years, an ailing Joshua makes a farewell pronouncement to the nation of Israel. Joshua goads the Israelites to be strong and to obey all of God's laws, throwing away any idols and refraining from intermarriage with the native people. The people assure Joshua they will be faithful to the covenant, but Joshua reluctantly accepts this assurance, worried that obedience for Israel will prove quite difficult.
*SEE THE CONQUEST MODEL
Third book of the Bible; named from its contents which deal entirely with the service of God and the religious ceremonies to be performed. i.e a relationship with a holy God requires holiness
Moses fled here after killing an Egyptian, south of Canaan
a Northwest Semitic title and honorific meaning "master" or "lord", used for various gods who were patrons of cities in the Levant and Asia Minor.
"Baal" may refer to any god and even to human officials.
the Levantine god of the sea, he is also one of the 'ilhm (Elohim) or sons of El, the name given to the Levantine pantheon.
Monolatry vs. Monotheism
monolatry = the recognition of the existence of many gods, but with the consistent worship of only one deity. The term was perhaps first used by Julius Wellhausen.
monotheism = the doctrine or belief that there is only one God.
according to D and E is the mountain that the Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God, the "Mountain of God".
The Protestant reformer John Calvin took the view that Sinai and Horeb were the same mountain, with the eastern side of the mountain being called Sinai and the western side being called Horeb.
according t J and P is the mountain that the Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God.
"Sinai" and "Horeb" are generally considered to refer to the same place, although there is a small body of opinion that the two names may refer to different locations.
An appearance or manifestation of God, as when he "appeared" to Moses in a burning bush.
An inscription making the earliest known references to the Israelites; dates roughly to 1200 B.C. Egyptian pharaohs speak of destroying Israelites
an agreement between God and his people in which God makes certain promises and requires certain behavior from them in return
A treaty made between unequal parties. Such as when God made treaties with men
"Thou shalt" The strongest possible command. Unique to Israel. No rationale or explanation. "Because I said so"
Casuistic law conditional law concerning crime and punishment, if....then.., Many of the laws of the Pentateuch are of this form. Others are apodictic in form.
The Book of the Covenant
contains laws about animal sacrafice, homosexuality, leperacy, bodily fluids, abortion, agriculture, livestock, slave rights, humanitarian rights
Code of Hammurabi
1754 BC, a well-preserved Babylonian law code of ancient Mesopotamia, one of the oldest deciphered writings of significant length in the world.
The sixth Babylonian king Hammurabi enacted the code, 282 laws, with scaled punishments, adjusting "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth"
The Ten Commandments (literally, "ten words") given by God to Moses on Sinai.
An attribute of God and the Church describing complete separation from the sphere of the profane.
In Leviticus.....the holiness code chapters are marked by a concern for holy living on the part of the people rather than a concern with sacrificial systems or ritual purity, as are the first sixteen chapters of the book. The holy living to which the Holiness Code calls the people is to be exemplified in all arenas of life--economic, social, sexual, familial.
"second law" retelling/reinterpreted of the Law of Moses; set up as a series of speeches by Moses, is the fifth book of the Hebrew Bible, consists of three sermons or speeches delivered to the Israelites by Moses on the plains of Moab, shortly before they enter the Promised Land.
THEME: one god, one Israel, one place of worship
LAWS: less concern for ritual and the preisthood than Leviticus, humanitarian laws, restrictions on kings power, envisions an ideal social polity.
The first king of the Israelites who defended Israel against many enemies (especially the Philistines)...gets rejected by God, paranoid of David
King Saul was Israel's first king and monarch. His rise to power was ordained by God and his life showed lots of promise during the early years of his rule as king. Saul had good favor with God and the people of Israel when he obeyed the Lord but after a major incident where Saul chose not to follow God's instructions he was destined to lose his position and power as king. The second half of Saul's reign was characterized by torment, anger, disobedience and hatred. Eventually, Saul was replaced as king of Israel by David the son of Jesse. He appears on the Biblical Timeline Chart circa 1100 BC.
The story of Saul's life and reign is outlined in 1 Samuel 9-31 and it begins with the prophet Samuel. In the early days when Israel had become a stable nation they were ruled by judges. The prophet Samuel was a judge and priest over Israel in (give a date) and the people were governed through a theocratic rule. Samuel had two sons who were destined to take his position as leader once his time was over but they were not men of faith. The Israelite people did not want to be ruled by them and they demanded a king. God was against this but he decided to allow them to have what they wanted but with a price. The people of Israel didn't care because they were now like the other people in the world because they finally had a king.
Saul was a man from the land of Gibeah which was a small settlement a few miles outside of ancient Israel. There are three different versions in the Bible about how Saul became the first king of Israel. Saul is appointed to this position by Samuel in 1 Samuel 9:1 - 10:16. The second version is found in 1 Samuel 10: 17-24 and 12: 1-5 and Saul becomes the king by being selected through a lottery process. The last instance of Saul's appointment happens in 1 Samuel 11: 1 - 11 and 11:15. In this passage of scripture Saul is appointed king after he defeats a group of Ammonites. Each of these three different passages of scriptures seem like they're explaining Saul's appointment to king in three different stories but these events could have happened in a successive series of events which ultimately designated Saul as king.
Saul's name means: "lent", "to lend", "asked for" or "given" in the Hebrew language. He was considered to be an impressive young man who was taller and probably more handsome than any of his fellow country men. Saul apparently had the physical and social characteristics that people look for in rulers (1 Samuel 9:2). Once Saul had become king he began to win a string of military victories. He defeated the Philistines who were subjecting the Israelites right before his reign (1 Samuel 14:47).
Saul ruled well for many years but ran into problems when he went to war against the Amalekites. God had told Samuel to give Saul specific instructions that he was expected to obey to the letter. Saul didn't follow through with God's commands and God had rejected Saul as king.
Saul Throws Spear at David" by George Tinworth
Saul then spent the rest of his days being tormented by an evil spirit and tried to kill David who destined to take his throne. After learning about Samuel's death Saul contacted a medium to see if he could get a word from Samuel. God allowed Samuel to return to let Saul know that he was going to die the next day (1 Samuel 31:5) and he did. King David was sad over Saul's death and he took over the kingdom after Saul had passed.
Prophet that summons the Israelites and organized them into an army; led the army against the Philistines. establishment of Israel as a monarchy
3rd c. BC, (70 authors) the Greek translation of the Old Testament, which contained the Deuteronomy canonical books,
a Prophet of god, brother of Moses, the spokesman for Moses in front of the pharaoh, became the first high priest of the Israelites.
"the first born" son of Abraham and Hagar who was cast out after the birth of Isaac
Persecuted the Israelites by resisting their entry into Canaan and ultimately attacking cities which they had established. Samuel and David help the Israelites defeat them
The Hebrew prophet who led the Israelites from Egypt across the Red sea on a journey known as the Exodus
A judge of Israel who performed herculean feats of strength against the Philistines until he was betrayed to them by his mistress Delilah
a military hero, Torah piety not stressed, based on charismatic, not dynastic rue,
After Joshua's death, the tribes of Israel continue their conquest of the southern regions of Canaan, but they are unable to cleanse the land thoroughly of its native inhabitants. God declares that these remaining people will be an impediment to Israel's enjoyment of the promised land. Generations pass, and the younger Israelites turn away from God, intermarrying with the Canaanites and worshipping the local deities. God threatens to abandon Israel because of the disobedience of the youth, but he selects a series of judges, or rulers, to act as temporary leaders for the people.
Throughout the lives of these judges, the narrator tells us, Israel's behavior follows a consistent pattern: the people of Israel fall into evil, God sends a leader to save them, and, once the judge dies, the people commit even greater evil. When the Israelites' continued worship of the Canaanite gods leads to an invasion by the nation of Moab, God sends Israel a left-handed man named Ehud to be its deliverer. Ehud visits the Moabite king and offers to give the king a secret message from God. When the king dismisses his attendants, Ehud draws a sword strapped to his right thigh and plunges it into the obese king, killing him. Ehud escapes and leads the Israelites in regaining control of the Jordan River valley.
A prophet named Deborah emerges as Israel's new judge after Israel returns to evil and is invaded by a mighty army from the north. Counseling Israel's tribes under a great tree, she calls for an insurrection, and, together with God's help, the Israelites defeat the king's 900 chariots, sending the Canaanite general, Sisera, into retreat. When Sisera seeks refuge in a local woman's tent, the owner, Jael, lures Sisera to sleep and kills him, hammering a peg into his skull. Deborah recounts the victory in a lengthy song, extolling God as a warrior and herself as the "mother in Israel" (5:7).
God commissions a humble man, Gideon, to save Israel from its next invaders, the Midianites, who impoverish and scatter the people. Gideon tears down his father's altar to the god Baal, and the Israelites respond in droves to his call to fight. God demands fewer men for the battle, and, in a test, Gideon leads the men to a river to drink. Those who cup their hands to drink are sent home, and the remaining three hundred men who lap the water with their tongues are chosen for God's army. Spying on the enemy troops at night, Gideon overhears a Midianite soldier tell his friend about a dream in which a small loaf of bread was able to knock down a large Midianite tent. The friend interprets the dream as a sign that Midian will be defeated by Israel. Gideon and his few men surround the camps, and—with the sound of trumpets and broken jars—the Israelites emit such a clamorous war cry that the Midianites turn and slay each other. Israel attempts to make Gideon its king, but Gideon refuses, proclaiming that God alone is ruler of Israel.
Widespread worship of the god Baal plagues Israel, and Gideon's son Abimelech serves a violent three-year reign as Israel's king. His tyrannical reign ends when a woman throws a millstone on Abimelech's head. Pressured by the Philistines from the east and the Ammonites from the west, Israel turns from its idol worship and God selects a new judge, Jephthah, the son of a prostitute, to challenge the Ammonites. Jephthah promises God that, if he is victorious, he will sacrifice to God the first thing that comes out of his house the day he returns from battle. Upon devastating the Ammonites, Jephthah returns home to see his daughter emerge from his house, dancing, to greet him. Jephthah laments his promise, but his daughter encourages him to remain faithful to God, and Jephthah kills the virgin girl.
The Philistines continue to oppress Israel, and the angel of God appears to a childless Israelite couple, promising them a son who will become Israel's next deliverer. The couple raises their son, Samson, as a Nazirite—a person who symbolizes his devotion to God by never cutting his hair. God blesses Samson with exceptional abilities, and one day Samson kills a lion with his bare hands. Contrary to his parents' urging, Samson chooses a Philistine woman to be his wife. During the wedding ceremony, he baffles the Philistines with a riddle, the answer to which they discover only when Samson's wife reveals the answer to them. Samson burns with anger and goes home without his wife, but when he returns to retrieve her, the Philistines have given her to another man. Samson captures three hundred foxes and ties torches to each of their tails, setting the Philistine crops ablaze. When the Philistines pursue Samson, the Israelites hand him over to his enemies, bound at the wrist. With God's power, Samson breaks his bindings and uses the jaw-bone of a donkey to kill a thousand Philistine men.
Again, Samson falls in love with a Philistine woman, Delilah. The Philistine officials urge Delilah to discover the secret of Samson's strength. Three times, Delilah asks Samson the source of his power, and Samson lies to her each time, duping the officials in their attempts to subdue him. After a while, Samson tells her the truth, informing her that his long hair is the source of his strength. While Samson is asleep, Delilah has his hair cut and alerts the officials, who capture him and gouge out his eyes. In prison, Samson's hair begins to grow again, and, during a Philistine religious festival, the blind Samson is brought out to entertain the crowds. Samson asks his servant to guide him to the pillars of the arena, and—crying out to God—Samson knocks down the pillars of the temple, killing the Philistine rulers.
Without a judge, Israel becomes even more corrupt. One day, a man and his concubine are accosted while spending the night in the Israelite tribe of Benjamin. When a gang of Benjamite men demand to have sex with the man, he offers them his concubine instead, and the men rape her repeatedly throughout the night until she dies. Enraged, the man brings the concubine home and cuts her into twelve pieces, sending a piece to each of the twelve tribes of Israel as a symbol of Israel's corruption. The rest of Israel rallies together in opposition to the tribe of Benjamin, and, with God's help, the united tribes kill more than 25,000 Benjamites. Israel grieves for its lost tribe and helps the remaining Benjamites repopulate their land.
Old Babylonian poem written in Akkadian. Enlil decides to destroy mankind because he cannot sleep. Uses plague, famine, and draught to do so. He floods the Earth and Atrahasis has to build an ark to survive.
The sons of Israel do evil in the sight of the Lord (2:11-13).
The anger of the Lord is kindled. The Lord sells them to their enemies (2:14).
Israel is distressed & cries out to the Lord (2:15).
God raises a judge to deliver (2:16).
The judge delivers (2:16-18).
The land rests until the judge dies (2:19).
Purity/Impurity Ritual and Moral
many of the causes of impurity or
uncleanness set forth in the Pentateuch are also sins, the state of impurity itself is not sin and is
not a sin. Rather, the Law's pervasive reminder that state of impurity more often arises from
innocent sources in everyday life than from personal sins was intended to serve as a continual
reminder of individual dependence on God. Impurity, whether voluntary or involuntary,
requires purification and, at some point, sacrifice, both of which are reminders of the need for
The differences between the
Jewish, Catholic and Protestant canons of the Old Testament
In the third century B.C., the Jewish scripture was translated into Greek for the convenience of the many Jews who were not fluent in Hebrew. This translation was known as the Septuagint and refers to the tradition that seventy-two rabbis worked on the translation. At the time the Christian Bible was being formed, the Septuagint was in common use by Jews and Jewish Christians, and Christians adopted it as the Old Testament of the Christian Bible. However, around 100 A.D., Jewish rabbis revised their Scripture and established an official canon of Judaism which excluded some portions of the Greek Septuagint. The material excluded was a group of 15 late Jewish books, written during the period 170 B.C. to 70 A.D., that were not found in Hebrew versions of the Jewish Scripture. Christians did not follow the revisions of Judaism and continued to use the text of the Septuagint as the Old Testament.
In the 1500s, Protestant leaders decided to organize the Old Testament material according to the official canon of Judaism rather than the Septuagint. They moved the Old Testament material which was not in the Jewish canon into a separate section of the Bible called the Apocrypha. So, Protestant Bibles then included all the same material as the earlier Bible, but it was divided into two sections: the Old Testament and the Apocrypha. Protestant Bibles included the Apocrypha until the mid 1800s, and the King James Version was originally published with the Apocrypha. However, the Apocrypha was considered less important, and Bible publishers eventually dropped it from most Protestant editions. The books of the Apocrypha are also known as the deuterocanonical books.
Catholic and Orthodox Bibles
The Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches did not follow the Protestant revisions, and they continue to base their Old Testament on the Septuagint. The result is that these versions of the Bible have more Old Testament books than most Protestant versions. Catholic Old Testaments include 1st and 2nd Maccabees, Baruch, Tobit, Judith, The Wisdom of Solomon, Sirach (Ecclesiasticus), additions to Esther, and the stories of Susanna and Bel and the Dragon which are included in Daniel. Orthodox Old Testaments include these plus 1st and 2nd Esdras, Prayer of Manasseh, Psalm 151 and 3rd Maccabees.
Summary of Gilgamesh....
Gilgamesh, king of Uruk, was two-thirds god and one-third man. He built magnificent temple towers, surrounded his city with high walls, and laid out its orchards and fields. He was physically beautiful, immensely strong, and very wise. Although Gilgamesh was godlike in body and mind, he began his kingship as a cruel despot. He lorded over his subjects, raping any woman who struck his fancy, whether she was the wife of one of his warriors or the daughter of a nobleman. He accomplished his building projects with forced labor, and his exhausted subjects groaned under his oppression. The gods heard his subjects' pleas and decided to keep Gilgamesh in check by creating a wild man named Enkidu, who was as magnificent as Gilgamesh. Enkidu became Gilgamesh's great friend, and Gilgamesh's heart was shattered when Enkidu died of an illness inflicted by the gods. Gilgamesh then traveled to the edge of the world and learned about the days before the deluge and other secrets of the gods, and he recorded them on stone tablets.
The epic begins with Enkidu. He lives with the animals, suckling at their breasts, grazing in the meadows, and drinking at their watering places. A hunter discovers him and sends a temple prostitute into the wilderness to tame him. In that time, people considered women and sex calming forces that could domesticate wild men like Enkidu and bring them into the civilized world. When Enkidu sleeps with the woman, the animals reject him since he is no longer one of them. Now, he is part of the human world. Then the harlot teaches him everything he needs to know to be a man. Enkidu is outraged by what he hears about Gilgamesh's excesses, so he travels to Uruk to challenge him. When he arrives, Gilgamesh is about to force his way into a bride's wedding chamber. Enkidu steps into the doorway and blocks his passage. The two men wrestle fiercely for a long time, and Gilgamesh finally prevails. After that, they become friends and set about looking for an adventure to share.
Gilgamesh and Enkidu decide to steal trees from a distant cedar forest forbidden to mortals. A terrifying demon named Humbaba, the devoted servant of Enlil, the god of earth, wind, and air, guards it. The two heroes make the perilous journey to the forest, and, standing side by side, fight with the monster. With assistance from Shamash the sun god, they kill him. Then they cut down the forbidden trees, fashion the tallest into an enormous gate, make the rest into a raft, and float on it back to Uruk. Upon their return, Ishtar, the goddess of love, is overcome with lust for Gilgamesh. Gilgamesh spurns her. Enraged, the goddess asks her father, Anu, the god of the sky, to send the Bull of Heaven to punish him. The bull comes down from the sky, bringing with him seven years of famine. Gilgamesh and Enkidu wrestle with the bull and kill it. The gods meet in council and agree that one of the two friends must be punished for their transgression, and they decide Enkidu is going to die. He takes ill, suffers immensely, and shares his visions of the underworld with Gilgamesh. When he finally dies, Gilgamesh is heartbroken.
Gilgamesh can't stop grieving for Enkidu, and he can't stop brooding about the prospect of his own death. He sets off into the wilderness, determined to find Utnapishtim, the Mesopotamian Noah. After the flood, the gods had granted Utnapishtim eternal life, and Gilgamesh hopes that Utnapishtim can tell him how he might avoid death too. Gilgamesh's journey takes him to the twin-peaked mountain called Mashu, where the sun sets into one side of the mountain at night and rises out of the other side in the morning. Utnapishtim lives beyond the mountain, but the two scorpion monsters that guard its entrance refuse to allow Gilgamesh into the tunnel that passes through it. Gilgamesh pleads with them, and they relent.
After a harrowing passage through total darkness, Gilgamesh emerges into a beautiful garden by the sea. There he meets Siduri, a veiled tavern keeper, and tells her about his quest. She warns him that seeking immortality is futile and that he should be satisfied with the pleasures of this world. However, when she can't turn him away from his purpose, she directs him to Urshanabi, the ferryman. Urshanabi takes Gilgamesh on the boat journey across the sea and through the Waters of Death to Utnapishtim. Utnapishtim tells Gilgamesh the story of the flood—how the gods met in council and decided to destroy humankind. Ea, the god of wisdom, warned Utnapishtim about the gods' plans and told him how to fashion a gigantic boat in which his family and the seed of every living creature might escape. When the waters finally receded, the gods regretted what they'd done and agreed that they would never try to destroy humankind again. Utnapishtim was rewarded with eternal life. Men would die, but humankind would continue.
When Gilgamesh insists that he be allowed to live forever, Utnapishtim gives him a test. If you think you can stay alive for eternity, he says, surely you can stay awake for a week. Gilgamesh tries and immediately fails. So Utnapishtim orders him to clean himself up, put on his royal garments again, and return to Uruk where he belongs. Just as Gilgamesh is departing, however, Utnapishtim's wife convinces him to tell Gilgamesh about a miraculous plant that restores youth. Gilgamesh finds the plant and takes it with him, planning to share it with the elders of Uruk. But a snake steals the plant one night while they are camping. As the serpent slithers away, it sheds its skin and becomes young again.
When Gilgamesh returns to Uruk, he is empty-handed but reconciled at last to his mortality. He knows that he can't live forever but that humankind will. Now he sees that the city he had repudiated in his grief and terror is a magnificent, enduring achievement—the closest thing to immortality to which a mortal can aspire.
******SHORT ANSWER QUESTION....Gilgamesh and the Flood Story?
SHORT ANSWER QUESTION
Pick one text of the ancient Near East (aside from the Bible) that we have discussed in class and briefly describe what happens in it. How do some scholars, such as Coogan, relate the work you chose to the Bible?
Similarities between the Epic of Gilgamesh and Genesis flood account of the Bible: two similarities stand out as being unique....
1. landing of the boats on a mountain 2. use of birds to determine when the flood subsided.
However, differ in important details. In addition, there are great differences in the timing of each of the flood accounts and the nature of the vessels. Why these details would be so drastically changed is a problem for those who claim that the Genesis flood was derived from the Epic of Gilgamesh.
There are a couple possible explanations for the existence of multiple ancient flood accounts. One - that
1. Genesis was a copy of Gilgamesh - has already been discussed and does not seem to fit the available data.
2. The other possible explanation is that the flood was a real event in the history of mankind that was passed down through the generations of different cultures.
***A popular theory, proposed by liberal "scholars," said that the Hebrews "borrowed" from the Babylonians, but no conclusive proof has ever been offered.22 The differences, including religious, ethical, and sheer quantity of details, make it unlikely that the Biblical account was dependent on any extant source from the Sumerian traditions. This still does not stop these liberal and secular scholars from advocating such a theory.
The most accepted theory among evangelicals is that both have one common source, predating all the Sumerian forms.23 The divine inspiration of the Bible would demand that the Genesis account is the correct version. Indeed the Hebrews were known for handing down their records and tradition.24
The Book of Genesis is viewed for the most part as an historical work, even by many liberal scholars, while the Epic of Gilgamesh is viewed as mythological.
The One-source Theory must, therefore, lead back to the historical event of the Flood and Noah's Ark.25 To those who believe in the inspiration and infallibility of the Bible, it should not be a surprise that God would preserve the true account of the Flood in the traditions of His people. The Genesis account was kept pure and accurate throughout the centuries by the providence of God until it was finally compiled, edited, and written down by Moses.
The Epic of Gilgamesh, then, contains the corrupted account as preserved and embellished by peoples who did not follow the God of the Hebrews.
The Main characters of Gilgamesh....
Gilgamesh - King of Uruk, the strongest of men, and the personification of all human virtues. A brave warrior, fair judge, and ambitious builder, Gilgamesh surrounds the city of Uruk with magnificent walls and erects its glorious ziggurats, or temple towers. Two-thirds god and one-third mortal, Gilgamesh is undone by grief when his beloved companion Enkidu dies, and by despair at the prospect of his own extinction. He travels to the ends of the Earth in search of answers to the mysteries of life and death.
Read an in-depth analysis of Gilgamesh.
Enkidu - Companion and friend of Gilgamesh. Hairy-bodied and brawny, Enkidu was raised by animals. Even after he joins the civilized world, he retains many of his undomesticated characteristics. Enkidu looks much like Gilgamesh and is almost his physical equal. He aspires to be Gilgamesh's rival but instead becomes his soul mate. The gods punish Gilgamesh and Enkidu by giving Enkidu a slow, painful, inglorious death for killing the demon Humbaba and the Bull of Heaven.
Shamhat - The temple prostitute who tames Enkidu by seducing him away from his natural state. Though Shamhat's power comes from her sexuality, it is associated with civilization rather than nature. She represents the sensuous refinements of culture—the sophisticated pleasures of lovemaking, food, alcohol, music, clothing, architecture, agriculture, herding, and ritual.
Utnapishtim - A king and priest of Shurrupak, whose name translates as "He Who Saw Life." By the god Ea's connivance, Utnapishtim survived the great deluge that almost destroyed all life on Earth by building a great boat that carried him, his family, and one of every living creature to safety. The gods granted eternal life to him and his wife.
Urshanabi - The guardian of the mysterious "stone things." Urshanabi pilots a small ferryboat across the Waters of Death to the Far Away place where Utnapishtim lives. He loses this privilege when he accepts Gilgamesh as a passenger, so he returns with him to Uruk.
Anu - The father of the gods and the god of the firmament.
Aruru - A goddess of creation who fashioned Enkidu from clay and her spittle.
Humbaba - The fearsome demon who guards the Cedar Forest forbidden to mortals. Humbaba's seven garments produce an aura that paralyzes with fear anyone who would withstand him. He is the personification of awesome natural power and menace. His mouth is fire, he roars like a flood, and he breathes death, much like an erupting volcano. In his very last moments he acquires personality and pathos, when he pleads cunningly for his life.
The basic plot of Enuma Elisha....
The Enuma Elish tells the story of how the universe came into being, a great struggle among the gods, and the creation of the world and humanity.
The story of Enuma Elish has two basic parts. The first involves a cosmogony, the beginning of the universe, and a theogony, the birth of the gods. The second part of the epic tells of the battle between the god Marduk and the chaos-dragon Tiamat and how Marduk became the king of the gods. The work ends with the construction of a city for Marduk, Babylon, and a temple for him, called Esagilla, in the city. Finally, Marduk is enthroned as chief god.
In the Beginning...
Enuma Elish begins with the universe unformed and containing only water. Only two beings exist in this unformed creation: Apsu, the fresh waters, and his wife, Tiamat, who is the salt water and the chaotic oceans. Tiamat is depicted as a monstrous dragon. From their union, silt forms, as it does when a freshwater river runs into the salty sea; from that, the gods arise, and the universe begins to take form. The gods begin to have children of their own, and soon there are many of them, ruling the cosmos.
This new order of things is too much for Apsu, who is bothered by the noise and commotion caused by the gods. He decides to destroy them, despite the fact that they are his progeny. Tiamat is horrified by her husband's plan to attack her children and opposes Apsu but cannot defeat him.
Apsu is eventually conquered by the god Ea, his own great-grandson, who uses a spell to subdue Apsu and keep him imprisoned in a deathlike state of sleep. All seems well, and Ea and his wife have a son, the god Marduk, who as a child is the favorite of the other gods. They give him the winds as a toy to play with, but the winds stir up trouble on the salty seas, enraging Tiamat. Tiamat, her new husband, the god Kingu, and a group of gods to which she has given birth swear revenge for this and for Ea's treatment of Apsu - although, breaks in the text leave her reasons for this change of allegiance somewhat vague.
The gods are frightened at the prospect of facing this army, with Kingu at its head. They don't know how they could possibly defeat it. Marduk speaks up, offering to fight for the gods and defeat Tiamat and Kingu on one condition: that he be made absolute king of the gods, having even the power of life and death over his fellow divinities.
The rest of the gods decide to test Marduk's power by setting up a new constellation in the heavens. They challenge Marduk first to destroy it, and then to restore it just as it was. Marduk passes the test, and the gods agree to his conditions. Marduk is armed with a mace, a bow and arrows, and a net, and sent off to do battle.
Marduk faces the dragon Tiamat in single combat; he catches her in his net and dispatches her with an arrow. Marduk then cuts up Tiamat's body and uses it to construct the dome of the sky, as well as various natural phenomena. He buries her head under a mountain and pierces her eyes, which become the sources for the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. In this way, Marduk demonstrates his absolute mastery over the natural world.
Marduk pardons the gods who fought with Tiamat (except for Kingu) but demands that as penance they construct for him a royal city, Babylon, and a temple in it from which to rule, Esagilla. Marduk also convenes a council of the gods, at which Kingu is tried and executed. In order to free the gods from any further toil or manual labor, Marduk commands that the gods use Kingu's corpse to construct the first humans, who are to serve the gods by keeping the land worked and by giving the gods appropriate worship and sacrifices.
Marduk's commands are obeyed. The gods build the city of Babylon and the temple for Marduk and also create humanity to serve them. The epic ends with a feast at Marduk's temple, at which the rest of the gods formally proclaim him as their king.
The basic characters of Enuma Elisha....
One of the central figures of the legend is the goddess Tiamat, a dragonlike personification of the oceans, who headed the hordes of chaos and whose destruction was prerequisite to an orderly universe.
Tiamat Mother Goddess, wife of Apsu, mother of Anshar and Kishar. (Sumerian counterpart is Nintu.)
Apsu Ruler of all the gods and husband and father as above. (Sumerian counterpart is Anu.)
Mummu A son of Tiamat and Apsu. God of the mist.
Anu (An) Son of Anshar and Kishar. God of the sky. (Sumerian husband of Nintu and father/ruler of all the gods.)
Nintu (Ki) (Sumerian mother of all the gods. Created the first humans out of clay.)
Enlil God of the air between earth and sky. (Sumerian son of Anu and Nintu who becomes ruler of the gods with Anu.)
Ishtar (Inanna) (Sumerian first daughter of Anu (or Sin) and the goddess of love and war.)
Ea Son of Anu, husband of Damkina, and father of Marduk. Ruler of all the gods after Apsu. (Sumerian son of Nintu and ruler of the earth.)
Damkina Wife of Ea and mother of Marduk.
Marduk Wisest and most accomplished god. He became ruler of all the gods. (Sumerian counterpart of Anu and Enlil.)
Kingu Leads Tiamat's army against Marduk.
Sin God of the moon and father of Shamash.
Shamash God of the sun.
The key characters, events, and themes in the Abraham cycle....
primeval history ends > Abraham cycle starts.. patriarchal history (focused on one subset of man),
a) Genealogical framework
b) Migration from Haran; separation from Nahor
c) Building of altars; land promised
d) "Wife-sister" episode
e) Border agreement with Lot
f) Sodom episode and rescue of Lot
g) Covenant of sacrifice
h) Explusion and rescue of Hagar
i) (G) Covenant of Circumcision
j) (F) Sodom episode and rescue of Lot
k) (E) Border agreement with Abimelech
l) (D) "Wife-sister" episode
m) (C) Building of altar , land secured
n) (B) Migration to Haran; reunification with Nahor's line
o) (A) Genealogical framework
1. Key themes present in opening scene (journey, infertility, presence of Lot).
2. Relationship of divine will and human responsibility. Blessing and curse
a) "History never looks like history when you are living through it. It looks confusing and messy,
and always feels uncomfortable."
b) "There is so much marital conflict and sibling intrigue they almost forfeit the call and fumble the
promise. Yet the storyteller refuses to clean up their act. This is the amazing thing about the
people of Genesis. The more we talk about them, the more they look like people we know - faces
in the mirror."
3. Abraham: fear and faith. Kierkegaard: "though Abraham arouses my admiration, he at same time
The key characters, events, and themes in the Jacob cycle....
The Jacob cycle continues the themes of the Abraham cycle, including blessing, offspring, and land, but it gives each theme a new twist. The Abraham cycle dealt with fertility and offspring via the father-to-son relationship. The Jacob cycle analyzes the brother-to-brother relationship within the promise. If there is more than one son, who should inherit the promise? Is there an ironclad law that the firstborn gets it? The action of these stories is driven by sibling rivalry.
Jacob, impelled by his own (and sometimes also his mother's) scheming and trickery, connived to possess the blessing. Do we see here a repeat of primeval sin, trying to steal rather than await God's favor? The Jacob cycle proceeds in a threefold series of struggles. First, Jacob outwits his twin brother, Esau, to gain possession of the family birthright. Second, Jacob outmaneuvers his Aramean Uncle Laban and acquires substantial wealth. Third, Jacob outlasts Elohim in a wrestling match, determined to receive divine blessing.
As with the Abraham cycle, so too with the Jacob cycle, the story also involves a good deal of travel. Jacob's maturation involves a multistage journey (Figure 2.5) necessitated by his own deceptions and built around significant encounters with the deity.
A—Birth of Jacob and Esau: Jacob gets the birthright (25)
B—Isaac and Abimelech: conflict over land (26)
C—Jacob flees from Esau with the blessing (27)
D—Jacob at Bethel: "house of God" (28)
E—Jacob stays with Laban (29-31)
The key characters, events, and themes in the Joseph cycle....
The Joseph cycle, Genesis 37-50, is one of the more well-crafted and cohesive works of Hebrew literature. Whereas most other Hebrew stories are only a few paragraphs long, the Joseph narrative sustains a story line over many chapters. In view of this, some scholars call it a short story, others a novella. Despite the variety of its presumed documentary sources, the Joseph cycle hangs together as a tale of sibling rivalry and providential deliverance. (24)
This block of text, Genesis 37-50, is called the Joseph cycle because Joseph is indisputably its main character, But it is somewhat curious that he should get so much attention. Judged on the basis of later tribal history, Joseph is not the most significant of Jacob/Israel's sons. Instead, Judah might be the expected focus. The tribe of Judah becomes the source of so much later history and the home of the Davidic monarchy. Still, to make some sense out of Joseph's centrality, Ephraim, the son of Joseph, does become the core of the northern kingdom; in fact, Joseph was the father of both Ephraim and Manasseh, the two largest of the ten northern tribes. Arguably this is one reason why the Elohist writer, who contributed a sizable proportion of the cycle, was interested.
leading archaeological models for understanding the historical origins of Israel...
*LOOK UP MORE INFO AND POWERPOINTS
THE CONQUEST MODEL: This theory, known as the conquest model, views the first half of the book of Joshua as a more or less straightforward depiction of how Israel came to settle the land of Canaan. That is, sometime in the thirteenth century BCE, the Israelites escaped from slavery in Egypt, journeyed through the Sinai and Transjordan regions, entered into Canaan and subsequently conquered the land and its people through a quick (less than one generation) and decisive military campaign. The conquest entailed not only defeating the kings of many Canaanite cities but also destroying much of the indigenous population. According to Joshua 1-11, the conquest took place through three major campaigns, each in different geographical parts of Canaan: the central (6-8), southern (10), and northern regions (11). After summarizing the totality of the conquest (Josh 11:23) and recounting all the defeated lands and kings (Josh 12), the remaining chapters in Joshua describe the allotment of the land to various tribes (Josh 13-22) and culminates in several final exhortations and a covenant renewal ceremony (Josh 23-24). While the conquest model allows for the possibility that non-Israelites were incorporated along the way (see the reference to the "mixed multitude" who joined the Israelites as they left Egypt in Exod 12:38), those settling the land primarily are seen as a culturally and religiously united group of outsiders—the very same people, although a generation removed, whom Moses led out of Egypt.
THE SETTLEMENT MODEL:judges
israel came and take things over, and then people came from other lands and gradually coming together over a long period of time...formed a common identity....snf then made a story that they made of a story that they conquered the land, regarding the historicity of Joshua's account of the conquest, alternative settlement theories began to emerge. One such theory, known as the peaceful migration or pastoral nomad model, was put forth in 1925 by the German scholar Albrecht Alt. Along with the supporters of the conquest model, Alt agreed that the earliest Israelites were non-indigenous people who entered Canaan around the thirteenth century. Where Alt's model drastically diverges from the conquest model is in terms of the motivation and mechanism of settlement. Alt proposed that the earliest Israelites were pastoral nomads who tended sheep and goats in the semi-arid desert fringes east of Canaan. During the rainy winter months, these nomads and their flocks could comfortably survive on the land. But during the dry summer months, conditions made it necessary form them to migrate west towards the more verdant central hill country of Canaan where there was more rain and vegetation for their flocks. Over time, these nomads recognized that the agriculturally fertile hill country of Canaan could sustain small-scale farming and thus would enable them to give up their annual migrations for a life of settled subsistence farming. What motivated the Israelites to settle Canaan, quite literally, was that the grass was greener on the other side of the Jordan River! Since the central hill country was sparsely populated and far removed from powerful Canaanite cities, the migration of these outsiders was met with little resistance. Thus, to claim that the mechanism of migration was "peaceful" says less about the state of Canaanite-Israelite diplomacy than it does about the topological features and population distribution characteristic of ancient Canaan.
THE PEASANT REVOLT MODEL:isreailtes were actually before canaanites, the smaller groups rose up and took over the overlords, made story how they were the prestine ancient society, The third major settlement theory regarding the emergence of Israel in Canaan is called the peasant revolt model. Unlike the first two theories discussed, this theory proposes that the earliest Israelites were not outsiders who entered Canaan to settle the land; rather, they were actually Canaanite peasants who revolted against an oppressive aristocratic regime. With economic wealth and socio-political power concentrated in Canaanite city-states, those removed from the cities, such as lower-class peasant farmers, became marginalized members of Canaanite society. Facing heavy taxation and little to no access to either property or power, the Canaanite peasants grew increasingly dissatisfied with what they saw as oppressive conditions. Eventually, these individuals came together and violently revolted against the city-state system. These dissidents were later joined by a small group of Transjordan slaves who recently had escaped from their own slavery in Egypt. As these various oppressed people converged in their interests and combined in their efforts, a wide-scale revolt began that sought to establish an egalitarian socio-political order in direct opposition to the power structure of the city-states and their rulers. Therefore, urban centers were the primary target of the dissidents. Though beginning primarily as a socio-political uprising, this movement was subsequently galvanized by a growing devotion to Yahweh, a God worshipped by the small group of ex-slaves who had earlier joined the cause of the Canaanite peasants.
*no material distinction between israeiltes and cannanites sites ( ex. in ancient settlement of Ai)
**difference usually is whether there are no pig bones
The documentary hypothesis, the principle characteristics of each of the four documents....
The documentary hypothesis (DH), sometimes called the Wellhausen hypothesis, proposes that the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible) was derived from originally independent, parallel and complete narratives, which were subsequently combined into the current form by a series of redactors (editors). The number of these narratives is usually set at four.
The hypothesis was developed in the 18th and 19th centuries from the attempt to reconcile inconsistencies in the biblical text. By the end of the 19th century it was generally agreed that there were four main sources, combined into their final form by a series of redactors, R.
These four sources came to be known as the Yahwist, or Jahwist, J
Priestly Writer, P.
The contribution of Julius Wellhausen, a Christian theologian and biblical scholar, was to order these sources chronologically as JEDP, giving them a coherent setting in a notional evolving religious history of Israel.
the Yahwist source (J) : written c. 950 BCE in the southern Kingdom of Judah.
the Elohist source (E) : written c. 850 BCE in the northern Kingdom of Israel.
the Deuteronomist (D) : written c. 600 BCE in Jerusalem during a period of religious reform.
the Priestly source (P) : written c. 500 BCE by Kohanim (Jewish priests) in exile in Babylon.
While the hypothesis has been critiqued and challenged by other models, especially in the last part of the 20th century, its terminology and insights continue to provide the framework for modern theories on the composite nature and origins of the Torah and Bible compilation in general.
*ADD INFO AND USE TO ANSWER SHORT ANSWER QUESTION
SHORT ANSWER QUESTION
-Why do some scholars argue that Deuteronomy was written in the 8th or 7th century BCE?
-What evidence do they use to argue for this? -What possible evidence/arguments could be used to disagree with this thesis?
How does the documentary hypothestis understands Genesis 1-3 and the flood story....
The first source is the account of creation found in Genesis 1.1-2.4a (or, as some scholars might argue, Genesis 1.1-2.3), and is typically known as "P" (which stands for "Priestly," as it is believed to have been written and edited by a group or "school" or priests) among critical scholars. The second source follows thereafter and continues, for present purposes, up to Genesis 3.24. This source is known as "J" among biblical scholars.
There are also important differences in vocabulary, literary style, and structure.
erhaps the most well known difference is that Genesis 1.1-2.4a (the "P" account) uses only the Hebrew word elohim to refer to God (in total thirty five times) and never by the specific divine name of the God of Israel, YHWH or Yahweh (from whence the name Jehovah is eventually derived); while on the other hand the following account in Genesis 2.4b-3.24 (the "J" account) only uses the divine name "YHWH" (eleven times) in conjunction with elohim (thus, "YHWH Elohim"), but never elohim alone.
*ADD INFO AND USE TO ANSWER SHORT ANSWER QUESTION
SHORT ANSWER QUESTION
-Why do some scholars argue that Deuteronomy was written in the 8th or 7th century BCE?
-What evidence do they use to argue for this? -What possible evidence/arguments could be used to disagree with this thesis?
The Five Books of the Pentateuch
The main themes and key narratives of the Book of Numbers...
The book of numbers is largely Narrative History as far as its genre., 4th book of Pentateuch, It was written by Moses about 1450-1410 B.C.
KEY personalities include Moses, Aaron, Miriam, Joshua, Caleb, Eleazar, Korah, and Balaam.
PURPOSE of the book of Numbers is to tell about how Israel prepared to enter the promise land, but sinned and was punished. It describes Moses taking two population censuses, hence the name Numbers.
CONTENTS wandering in the desert, rebellion and punishment, laws, ritual and purity, miscellaneous narrative.
• From chapters 1-9 the Israelites are preparing for their journey and entry into the promise land. Moses begins by taking a census of all the tribes, primarily to see how many men are available and in shape for military service. Next, Moses dedicates the Levites and instructs the Nazirite vows and laws. During this time, the Israelites celebrate the 2nd Passover one year after their exit from bondage.
• In chapters 10-12, the Israelites travel from the wilderness in Sinai to approach the promise land. The people complain about their food, God gives them quail, and because of their greed, He also sends them a plague. Miriam and Aaron learn a lesson about whom God places in leadership.
• In chapters 13-19, we see severe punishment for disobedience and unfaithfulness to God. Moses sends out 12 spies to perform reconnaissance on the promise land. The 12 spies return and only two of them bring good news. The people fear the occupants and rebel against taking the land. For this God punishes them and sends them into the wilderness for forty years to roam.
• The last chapters of Numbers, from 20-36, the new generation of Israelites again attempt to enter the land to take it as God promised. This time they easily destroy two nations that confront them as they are entering. Balak uses his prophet Balaam to learn to seduce the Israelites to worship Baal. Because of this disobedience, about 24,000 people die, including Balaam. Before the book of Numbers ends, Moses again conducts a census, and Joshua assumes the leadership of Israel in place of Moses who is banned from the promise land, due to his disobedience.
The book of Numbers: Phineas
was a priest during the Israelites' Exodus journey, the grandson of Aaron and son of Eleazar the High Priest (Exodus 6:25), who distinguished himself as a youth at Shittim by his zeal against the Heresy of Peor. He was displeased with the immorality with which the Moabites and Midianites had successfully tempted the people (Numbers 25:1-9) to inter-marry and to worship Baal-peor, so he personally executed an Israelite man and a Midianite woman while they were together in the man's tent, running a javelin or spear through the man and the belly of the woman. His action brought an end to a plague said to have been sent by God to punish the Israelites for sexually intermingling with the Midianites.
Phinehas is commended for having stopped Israel's fall to idolatrous practices brought in by Midianite women, as well as for stopping the desecration of God's sanctuary. After the entry to the land of Israel and the death of his father he was appointed the third High Priest of Israel. He is commemorated as a saint in the Eastern Orthodox Church on September 2. The moral Lession is that our God love people who can stand in the cap.
Book of Numbers: Korah
Korah was the oldest son of Izhar, who was the son of Kothath of the tribe of Levi. Korah, then, was of the same tribe as Moses and Aaron. He led a rebellion against Moses and Aaron, accusing them of exalting themselves above the congregation of the Lord (Numbers 16:1-3). Korah was not alone in his charge. He gathered 250 other men to challenge Moses' authority as well: "You have gone too far! The whole community is holy, every one of them, and the Lord is with them. Why then do you set yourselves above the Lord's assembly?" (Numbers 16:3).
Obviously, Korah thought that he could do a better job leading the people than Moses was doing. But by leading this revolt against God's divinely appointed leaders, Korah was actually revolting against God (Numbers 16:11). Moses proposed a test to prove the source of his authority. Korah and his followers did not pass the test, and God opened up the earth and swallowed the rebels, their families, and all their possessions. Furthermore, "fire came out from the LORD" and consumed the other 250 men who were party to Korah's rebellion. The rest of the Israelites were terrified and fled (Numbers 16:31-35).
The following day, instead of being convinced that God had vindicated Moses and Aaron, the congregation began complaining that they had "killed the LORD's people." For this act of rebellion, God threatened to destroy the whole congregation and sent a plague among them. However, Moses and Aaron interceded for the rebels and averted a complete catastrophe. In the end, 14,700 Israelites had died (Numbers 16:41-50).
The rebellion of Korah demonstrates the grim consequences of usurping the authority of God and of those whom He has chosen to be leaders of His people.
The Book of Numbers: Balaam
Balaam is a diviner in the Torah, his story occurring towards the end of the Book of Numbers. The etymology of his name is uncertain, and discussed below. Every ancient reference to Balaam considers him a non-Israelite, a prophet, and the son of Beor, though Beor is not so clearly identified. Though other sources describe the apparently positive blessings he delivers upon the Israelites, he is reviled as a "wicked man" in the major story concerning him. Balaam refused to speak what God did not speak and would not curse the Israelites, even though King Balak of Moab offered him money to do so. But Balaam's error and the source of his wickedness came from sabotaging the Israelites as they entered the Promised Land. According to Numbers 31:16 and Revelation 2:14, Balaam returned to King Balak and informed the king on how to get the Israelites to curse themselves by enticing them with prostitutes and unclean food sacrificed to idols. The Israelites fell into transgression due to these traps and God sent a deadly plague to them as a result (Numbers 31:16).
The figures of Samuel and Saul and their rise to power...
Samuel - The last of Israel's judges and the prophet who anoints both Saul and David as king. Samuel fulfills political and priestly duties for Israel, but he ushers in Israel's monarchy mainly as a prophet—one who pronounces God's words and decisions. Samuel's stoic and aloof position in Israel allows Saul to struggle with God and his fate on his own.
Samuel and Saul: Saul's Rise and His Failed Kingship - 1 Samuel 8:1-15:35
Having demonstrated that Samuel was God's chosen leader for his people, the writer turned next to Samuel's role in supporting and opposing Saul as Israel's first king. See "Human Kingship: Was it wrong to have a human king?" below.
These chapters divide into two main parts: (1) Sauls rise as king (1 Sam 8:1-12:25) and (2) his failed kingship (1 Sam 13:1-15:35).
Saul's Rise to King - 1 Samuel 8:1-12:25
Saul became king over Israel under questionable circumstances. These beginnings appear in three steps: (1) the people's request for a king (1 Sam 8:1-22), (2) Saul's initial rise to power (1 Sam 9:1-11:15), and (3) Samuel's warnings and encouragements to Israel (1 Sam 12:1-25).
The main themes and key narratives of the Book of Exodus: Liberation from Slavery, Revelation of the Law on Sinai...
The book of Exodus consists mainly of two genres, Narrative History and Laws. It was written by Moses about 1450-1410 B.C. The key personalities include Moses, Miriam, Pharaoh, Pharaoh's daughter, Aaron, and Joshua. It was written to record the events of Israel's deliverance from slavery in Egypt. It describes the events to the reader in chronological order and also lists the Laws that God has given to the Israelites, in order to guide them in their relationship with Him.
• Chapters 1-7 of Exodus, introduce Moses and the Israelites in bondage in Egypt. This setting is approximately 400 years after Joseph and his families were living in Goshen at the end of Genesis. God protects baby Moses and spares his life, as Moses is adopted by Pharaoh's daughter and is raised as an Egyptian. God calls Moses with a special revelation, through a burning bush to release His people from slavery in Egypt. Moses obeys and with his brother Aaron, confronts Pharaoh to let God's people go free, but Pharaoh ignores the warning.
• In Chapters 7-13, Moses through the power of God releases 10 plagues of different sorts on the land of Egypt which included, turning all the water to blood, plagues of insects, boils, and hail. Finally, the death of every first-born son, this included the death of Pharaoh's eldest who would someday inherit the kingdom of Egypt. However, the Israelites obeyed God and followed the ordinance of the Passover and God spared them.
• Chapters 14-18 describe the Exodus or "Exit" from Egypt. Pharaoh can no longer endure the plagues that God poured on Egypt and himself and allows them to leave. Moses and the Israelites escape making it to the Red Sea. Shortly after, Pharaoh changes his mind and pursues them, but God destroys his army with the sea.
• Chapters 19-24, Moses presents all of the Laws to all the people at Mt. Sinai as God has commanded.
• From chapters 25-40, Moses gives the Israelites the tabernacle, priest and worship instructions.
The story of the Garden of Eden...
*ADD MY SUMMARY AND CHARCTERS
The second part of the Genesis creation narrative, in Genesis 2:4-3:24, creating the first man (Adam), whom he placed in a garden that he planted "eastward in Eden"
The Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. In the middle of the garden were the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. —Genesis 2:9
The man was free to eat off of any tree in the garden, but forbidden to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Last of all, the LORD God made a woman (Eve) from a rib of the man to be a companion to the man. In chapter 3, the man broke the commandment and ate of the forbidden fruit, and was sent forth from the garden to prevent him from eating also of the tree of life, and thus live for ever.
The Book of Genesis opens the Hebrew Bible with the story of creation. God, a spirit hovering over an empty, watery void, creates the world by speaking into the darkness and calling into being light, sky, land, vegetation, and living creatures over the course of six days. Each day, he pauses to pronounce his works "good" (1:4). On the sixth day, God declares his intention to make a being in his "own image," and he creates humankind (1:26). He fashions a man out of dust and forms a woman out of the man's rib. God places the two people, Adam and Eve, in the idyllic garden of Eden, encouraging them to procreate and to enjoy the created world fully, and forbidding them to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
In the garden, Eve encounters a crafty serpent who convinces her to eat the tree's forbidden fruit, assuring her that she will not suffer if she does so. Eve shares the fruit with Adam, and the two are immediately filled with shame and remorse. While walking in the garden, God discovers their disobedience. After cursing the serpent, he turns and curses the couple. Eve, he says, will be cursed to suffer painful childbirth and must submit to her husband's authority. Adam is cursed to toil and work the ground for food. The two are subsequently banished from Eden.
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