Tuesday, March 17, 2020

The first commandment

Here is a touchstone of that religion, and perhaps it is as close as we can come to marking the particularity, or uniqueness, of Israel’s religion. One can say that for two reasons: (1) the intention of the first commandment is spelled out in various ways throughout the documents which are our basic source for understanding that religion, and in a way that indicates they are basic for understanding Israel’s religion throughout its course; and (2) we know no genuine analogies in the ancient Near East to this exclusive, imageless worship of one deity. Thus in the first commandment we encounter a basic principle that reflects both the radical integration or centralization of the divine realm in Yahweh and also his exclusive claim over against all other gods.—Patrick D. Miller in Divine Doppelgängers: YHWH’s Ancient Look-Alikes, p. 27

No comments: