Monday, September 25, 2006

Links between the Bible and ANE cultures.

Links between the Bible and ANE cultures.

My Methodologies,
Pre-suppositions and Biases. Walter Reinhold Warttig Mattfeld y de la Torre,
M.A. Ed.

The article makes some powerful points. The chain of his logic leads to his conclusion that "the Hebrews have apparently transformed the Mesopotamian myths in Genesis," but the solution to the problem of why the Biblical scribes needed to produce the literature of the Bible, needs rethinking.
The author himself argues, "I now know there was No Garden or Eden, No Adam, No Eve, No Serpent, No Fall from Grace, No Noah, No Flood, No Ten Commandments written by God, NO Christ being resurrected, these are just reworked Sumerian and Mesopotamian myths for the most part." However, to explain why the religion developed in reaction to other ANE cultures by using a mythological Abraham turning from his national gods to worship Yahweh, only to be kicked out of Ur, etc., is an acceptance of mythology as historical. The author words his thoughts in a way that allows the reader to understand we are dealing with events that are in the realm of myth, but are possessed of some historical fact, but I cannot accept the point taken to the point where the stories reflect a core memory of an historical event.
That Sumerian mythological influence does not need to be explained by any particular access to the "archives" of Babylon to reflect their relationship. Especially when these ideas were "part of the furniture" as the author earlier claims.
Being Catholic by upbringing, I am familiar with the Deutero-canonical book of Judith:
Judith 5:5-9

"Then Achior, the leader of all the Ammonites, said to him, "Let my lord now hear a word from the mouth of your servant, and I will tell you the truth about this people that dwells in the nearby mountain district. No falsehood shall come from your servant's mouth. This people is descended from the Chaldeans.At one time they lived in Mesopotamia, because they would not follow the the gods of their fathers who were in Chaldea. For they had left
the ways of their ancestors, and they worshipped the God of Heaven, the God they had come to know; hence they drove them out from the presence of their gods; and they fled to Mesopotamia, and lived there a long time. Then their God commanded them to leave the place were they were living and go to the land of Canaan. There they settled, and prospered..."
This "tale" is most probably based on what was already written in the Bible. Notice though the code-word: "the God of Heaven," most likely a reference to Ahura Mazda. So, the interpretation as I see it is in agreement with the author of this site:
on Essenes and the Qabalah - Christianity Revealed

It is absurd to imagine that the Persians planted these ideas only in Yehud. They were planted widely, explaining why Jews mysteriously appeared all over the parts of the east controlled by the Persians, even though they were supposed to have come from originally from a tiny underpopulated region of limestone hills in Palestine. The Persians implanted Juddin in Egypt, Anatolia, Mesopotamia and the north of the Iranian plateau, as well as in the Levant. There was no diaspora but rather a spiritual convergence to the temple state deliberately set up by the Persian kings as the focus of the religion of the Juddin. After the fall of Persia, all the Juddin looked to Yehud as their spiritual home, though few wanted to go there. It was the Maccabees who gave
the Jews a national home of their own. All the Jews in the lands outside Yehud were called the diaspora, and the scriptural myth was written to support this new concept.
The give-away for me is that "their God" told them to move. Who
told the Juddin to move from a Mesopotamian land in actual history? It was none other than the first Jewish Messiah: Cyrus of Persia.

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