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The Mythic Past Biblical Archaeology And The Myth Of Israel

Author : Thomas L. Thompson
ISBN : 9780786725175
Genre : Religion
File Size : 70.84 MB
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The Jewish people's historical claims to a small area of land bordering the eastern Mediterranean are not only the foundation for the modern state of Israel, they are also at the very heart of Judeo-Christian belief. Yet in The Mythic Past, Thomas Thompson argues that such claims are grounded in literary myth, not history. Among the author's startling conclusions are these:* There never was a "united monarch" of Israel in biblical times* We can no longer talk about a time of the Patriarchs* The entire notion of "Israel" and its history is a literary fiction.The Mythic Past provides refreshing new ways to read the Old Testament as the great literature it was meant to be. At the same time, its controversial conclusions about Jewish history are sure to prove incendiary in a worldwide debate about one of the world's seminal texts, and one of its most bitterly contested regions.
Category: Religion

Mythic Past

Author : Thomas L. Thompson
ISBN : 1567317049
Genre : Bible
File Size : 30.39 MB
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Category: Bible

The Messiah Myth

Author : Thomas L. Thompson
ISBN : 0786739118
Genre : Religion
File Size : 38.25 MB
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Since the eighteenth century, scholars and historians studying the texts of the Bible have attempted to distill historical facts and biography from the mythology and miracles described there. That trend continues into the present day, as scholars such as those of the "Jesus Seminar" dissect the Gospels and other early Christian writings to separate the "Jesus of history" from the "Christ of faith." But with The Messiah Myth, noted Biblical scholar Thomas L. Thompson argues that the quest for the historical Jesus is beside the point, since the Jesus of the Gospels never existed.Like King David before him, says Thompson, the Jesus of the Bible is an amalgamation of themes from Near Eastern mythology and traditions of kingship and divinity. The theme of a messiah-a divinely appointed king who restores the world to perfection-is typical of Egyptian and Babylonian royal ideology dating back to the Bronze Age. In Thompson's view, the contemporary audience for whom the Old and New Testament were written would naturally have interpreted David and Jesus not as historical figures, but as metaphors embodying long-established messianic traditions. Challenging widely held assumptions about the sources of the Bible and the quest for the historical Jesus, The Messiah Myth is sure to spark interest and heated debate.
Category: Religion

Early History Of The Israelite People

Author : Thomas L. Thompson
ISBN : 9004119434
Genre : History
File Size : 85.31 MB
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This is a groundbreaking book on the origins of Israel, taking into account the contexts of geography, anthropology, and sociology, and drawing on a careful analysis of archaeological and written evidence. Thompson argues that none of the traditional models for the origin of biblical Israel in terms of conquest, peaceful settlement, or revolution are viable. The ninth and eighth century BC State of Israel is a product of the Mediterranean economy. The development of the ethnic concept of biblical Israel finds its context in history first at the time of the Persian renaissance. The volume presents a clear historical context and an interpretative matrix for the Bible.
Category: History

The Israelites In History And Tradition

Author : Niels Peter Lemche
ISBN : 0664227279
Genre : Religion
File Size : 82.45 MB
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Niels Peter Lemche focuses on the way Israelites understood themselves at different points in history--before, within, and after the monarchy. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in understanding Israel's rich history. Volumes in the Library of Ancient Israel draw on multiple disciplines--such as archaeology, anthropology, sociology, linguistics, and literary criticism--to illuminate the everyday realities and social subtleties these ancient cultures experienced. This series employs sophisticated methods resulting in original contributions that depict the reality of the people behind the Hebrew Bible and interprets these insights for a wide variety of readers.
Category: Religion

The Historicity Of The Patriarchal Narratives

Author : Thomas L. Thompson
ISBN : 1563383896
Genre : Religion
File Size : 42.53 MB
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Archaeology seems to have become an active partner in the attempt to prove the historical truth of the Bible. Biblical archaeologists have gone to the field in search of Noah's ark or the walls of Jericho, as if the finding of these artifacts would make the events of scripture somehow more true or real. Thomas Thompson is one of the most vocal contemporary critics of biblical archaeology. His simple but powerful thesis is that archaeology cannot be used in the service of the Bible. Focusing on the patriarchal narratives the stories of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob he demonstrates that archaeological research simply cannot historically substantiate these stories. Going further, Thompson says that archaeological materials should never be dated or evaluated on the basis of written texts. Looking to the patriarchal narratives in Genesis, he concludes that these stories are neither historical nor were they intended to be historical. Instead, these narratives are written as expressions of Israel's relationship to God. Thomas L. Thompson is Professor of Old Testament, University of Copenhagen. His books include The Mythic Past and The Early History of the Israelite People.
Category: Religion

Beyond The Quest For The Historical Jesus

Author : Thomas L. Brodie
ISBN : 190753458X
Genre : Religion
File Size : 80.60 MB
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In the past forty years, while historical-critical studies were seeking with renewed intensity to reconstruct events behind the biblical texts, not least the life of Jesus, two branches of literary studies were finally reaching maturity. First, researchers were recognizing that many biblical texts are rewritings or transformations of older texts that still exist, thus giving a clearer sense of where the biblical texts came from; and second, studies in the ancient art of composition clarified the biblical texts' unity and purpose, that is to say, where biblical texts were headed. The work of tracing literary indebtedness and art is far from finished but it is already possible and necessary to draw a conclusion: it is that, bluntly, Jesus did not exist as a historical individual. This is not as negative as may at first appear. In a deeply personal coda, Brodie begins to develop a new vision of Jesus as an icon of God's presence in the world and in human history.
Category: Religion

The Bible Unearthed

Author : Israel Finkelstein
ISBN : 9780743223386
Genre : Religion
File Size : 49.78 MB
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In this groundbreaking work that sets apart fact and legend, authors Finkelstein and Silberman use significant archeological discoveries to provide historical information about biblical Israel and its neighbors. In this iconoclastic and provocative work, leading scholars Israel Finkelstein and Neil Asher Silberman draw on recent archaeological research to present a dramatically revised portrait of ancient Israel and its neighbors. They argue that crucial evidence (or a telling lack of evidence) at digs in Israel, Egypt, Jordan, and Lebanon suggests that many of the most famous stories in the Bible—the wanderings of the patriarchs, the Exodus from Egypt, Joshua’s conquest of Canaan, and David and Solomon’s vast empire—reflect the world of the later authors rather than actual historical facts. Challenging the fundamentalist readings of the scriptures and marshaling the latest archaeological evidence to support its new vision of ancient Israel, The Bible Unearthed offers a fascinating and controversial perspective on when and why the Bible was written and why it possesses such great spiritual and emotional power today.
Category: Religion

Did Moses Exist

Author : D. M. Murdock
ISBN : 9780979963186
Genre : Religion
File Size : 52.99 MB
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The biblical figure of Moses has been the center of fascination for over 2,000 years, but what do we actually know about him? Was he a real person? Did the Exodus truly happen? Or is the story in the Pentateuch a mythical account written centuries after the alleged events? Why does Moses's story resemble that of other, older lawgivers and legendary predecessors? Why are there so many elements of sun and wine god myths in the tale of Moses? What does the focus on the serpent in his story signify? Who were Yahweh and the Elohim? Did Moses Exist? includes: Maps and 126 illustrations Extensive bibliography, table of contents and index Hundreds of footnotes and citations from primary sources in multiple languages Best modern scholarship from credentialed authorities Did Moses Exist? provides a massive amount of information from antiquity about the world's religious traditions and mythology, including how solar myths, wine cultivation and fertility cults have shaped the Bible and Judaism. This book may be the most comprehensive study to date, using the best scholarship and state-of-the-art research methods. "The existence of Moses as well as the veracity of the Exodus story is disputed amongst archaeologists and Egyptologists, with experts in the field of biblical criticism citing logical inconsistencies, new archaeological evidence, historical evidence and related origin myths in Canaanite culture." --"Moses," Wikipedia "There is no historical evidence outside of the Bible, no mention of Moses outside the Bible, and no independent confirmation that Moses ever existed." --Dr. Michael D. Coogan, lecturer on the Old Testament at Harvard Divinity School "We cannot be sure that Moses ever lived because there are no traces of his earthly existence outside of tradition." --Egyptologist Dr. Jan Assmann, Moses the Egyptian "The life of Moses contains elements--canonical and apocryphal--that mark him as a true mythic hero, and certainly he is Judaism's greatest hero and the central figure in Hebrew mythology." --Dr. David Leeming, The Oxford Companion to World Mythology "...the stories of the creation, of the flood, of Abraham, of Jacob, of the descent into and the exodus from Egypt, of the career of Moses and the Jews in the desert, of Joshua and his soldiers, of the judges and their clients, are all apocryphal, and were fabricated at a late period of Jewish history." --Dr. Thomas Inman, Ancient Faiths and Modern Table of Contents List of Illustrations Preface Introduction Who Wrote the Pentateuch? Was Moses an Egyptian Pharaoh or Priest? The Exodus as History? The Exodus in Ancient Literature Hyksos and Lepers Who Were the Israelites? The Exodus as Myth The Lawgiver Archetype The Dionysus Connection The Life of Dionysus The Vine and Wine The Great God Sun Yahweh and the Sun Moses as Solar Hero Conclusion Bibliography Index
Category: Religion

From Gods To God

Author : Avigdor Shinan
ISBN : 9780827611443
Genre : Religion
File Size : 53.32 MB
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The ancient Israelites believed things that the writers of the Bible wanted them to forget: myths and legends from a pre-biblical world that the new monotheist order needed to bury, hide, or reinterpret. Ancient Israel was rich in such literary traditions before the Bible reached the final form that we have today. These traditions were not lost but continued, passed down through the ages. Many managed to reach us in post-biblical sources: rabbinic literature, Jewish Hellenistic writings, the writings of the Dead Sea sect, the Aramaic, Greek, Latin, and other ancient translations of the Bible, and even outside the ancient Jewish world in Christian and Islamic texts. The Bible itself sometimes alludes to these traditions, often in surprising contexts. Written in clear and accessible language, this volume presents thirty such traditions. It voyages behind the veil of the written Bible to reconstruct what was told and retold among the ancient Israelites, even if it is “not what the Bible tells us.”
Category: Religion