Twilight of the Gods: The Conflict of Monotheism in the Hebrew Bible  -     By: David Penchansky
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Twilight of the Gods: The Conflict of Monotheism in the Hebrew Bible

Westminster John Knox Press / 2005 / Paperback

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Previously it was believed that monotheism gradually evolved in Israel's history, becoming influential, say, during the major prophets in the eighth century B.C. Archaeological evidence now suggests that polytheism, at least on a popular level, continued to vie with monotheism for centuries afterward. 160 pages, softcover. Westminster/John Knox.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 160
Vendor: Westminster John Knox Press
Publication Date: 2005
Dimensions: 9.0 X 6.0 (inches)
ISBN: 0664228852
ISBN-13: 9780664228859
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

Since the middle of the twentieth century, one of biblical scholarship's chief assumptions has been that ancient Israel evolved out of the polytheism of surrounding cultures into an ethical monotheism. However, this consensus has fallen apart in recent years. Scholars now know that early Israel was surrounded by a very polytheistic culture and that many Israelites thought of Yahweh as the chief God among many gods. Furthermore, archaeology has shown that Yahweh was worshiped along with other gods throughout the period after the exile, when many shrines were in honor of "Yahweh and his Asherah." David Penchansky's Twilight of the Gods is the first accessible book that shows a historical Israel where polytheism and monotheism existed simultaneously in great conflict. He provides a historical introduction, followed by close readings of key Old Testament passages, where he demonstrates how to interpret difficult biblical texts that depict other gods or claim Yahweh is the only God within this new understanding of Israelite religion.

Author Bio

David Penchansky is Professor of Theology at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. He is the author of several books, including What Rough Beast?: Images of God in the Hebrew Bible and The Betrayal of God: Ideological Conflict in Job.

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