The Old Ones in the Old Book
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The Old Ones in the Old Book : Paganism in the Hebrew Old Testament

4.16 (6 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

The Hebrew Old Testament, which contains some of the world s most ancient religious texts, was written and repeatedly re-edited over the course of several centuries from about 1000 BCE. It reached its final form at the hands of editors who were monotheists. They believed that their god Yahweh was the only true God, and that he had been worshipped exclusively by their ancestors from the time of Abraham. They edited their sources to reflect this belief. However we can strip away this veneer of later monotheism to view the ancient stories themselves. These bear witness to Israelite religion as practised before 600 BCE. Far from being monotheistic, this religion was a fascinating polytheistic paganism, close to the religion of the surrounding Canaanites. In this religion Yahweh, far from being God as understood by modern western monotheism, was a distinctive tribal deity. This book will be of particular interest to the large numbers of western people who come from a broadly Christian or Jewish background but have left those faiths behind to explore paganism or New Age spirituality.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 141 pages
  • 137.16 x 213.36 x 10.16mm | 181.44g
  • John Hunt Publishing
  • Moon Books
  • Ropley, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Reprint
  • maps (black and white)
  • 1780991711
  • 9781780991719
  • 1,585,147

Review quote

West has excelled in making academic standard research into a fascinating and exciting read. This book should be of interest to Jews, Christians, Pagans and readers generally interested in the development of spiritual paths, and become a handy reference source for years to come. (Pete Jennings, past President of The Pagan Federation and author of Pagan Paths) An important and timely book, which everyone concerned with spirituality in our time should read. (John Matthews, author of The Western Way) Readers will find in Phil West's very readable book a distillation of a century of scholarship on the different ways in which the beliefs of surrounding cultures played a key part in the emergence of what we now know as the Hebrew Bible. (Christopher Rowland, Dean Ireland's Professor of the Exegesis of Holy Scripture, University of Oxford)show more

About Philip West

Philip West studied Theology at London and Cambridge Universities and was formerly Head of Religious Studies at Westminster Under School. He lives in north Londonshow more

Rating details

6 ratings
4.16 out of 5 stars
5 17% (1)
4 83% (5)
3 0% (0)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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