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11:57 AM
@Caleb Aah, I see. :P That's actually a nice phrase. I may end up using it soon.
@Ami Good morning! I'm all ears.
 
Ray
@Richard, thanks for the answer on meta
I think that will be very helpful going forward
The only point that I think I disagree with is to include multiple options
It strikes me that those should be multiple answers so they can be voted independently
OTOH, exegesis is not rightly done by democracy
 
I've found that posting multiple opinions on the matter allow people to get a better overview. If you post multiple answers per opinion, (1) it becomes a list answer and (2) it becomes a voting contest
@Ray I do agree that having one canonical answer that surveys the multiple opinions can be cumbersome at times, though.
 
Ray
12:31 PM
I guess I don't mind showing what the options are
but there ought to be a conclusion
what I want to avoid is "well, some say this, and others say that"... to me it fails to answer the question
 
@Ray I totally understand where you're coming from and I agree to a certain extent. It just seems to be what the community wants.
My highest voted answer basically says "Well, I think this, but others disagree. Who knows!" (although much better worded).
Also, that post was mostly just my opinions on what I've learned over at C.SE. It seems that survey answers gain a lot more support than answering based on one viewpoint.
 
Ami
1:33 PM
Good morning @Richard
 
1:44 PM
@Ami Hey, good morning!
 
Ami
nice to see you again
do you have a few minutes?
 
@Ami Oh, yeah, definitely.
Somewhat distracted by some huge goings-on in C.SE, but I'll definitely try to keep up here. :)
 
Ami
Don't worry about it...Here are my thoughts on your "Elohim" answer:
I think the fact that we are exposed to very little paganism and pagan thought in day to day life is a major obstacle to a precise understanding of the Bible as it was meant to be understood.
Since most of the people around us today are monotheistic, we forget how different the theological climate was at the time the Bible was first given.
In your answer about the name “Elohim” you point out that the name could be understood as the singular monotheistic (in the case of the singular verb) or as a plurality of foreign gods. Elohim is essentially the plural of El, which is this guy: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_(deity). In a pagan context, there is no question that people would be inclined to read the very first verse in the Bible “In the beginning Elohim created the world” to mean a plurality of pagan gods created the world.
This makes the first verse in the Bible really cool, because you have the ambiguous Elohim with the singular verb Barah.
That must have been really jarring
sort of like: "all the people is ___"
 
@Ami This is an excellent point.
 
Ami
thank you
thats it
I got it off my chest
 
1:52 PM
@Ami I totally agree with you here. It's hard for people to really grasp the difference between paganism and Christianity.
Especially when we grow up in Christianity and are surrounded by monotheism.
 
Ami
Most people do know this, but the word "Sun" does not appear in the Genesis creation story.
the word for sun would be shemesh
 
@Ami Wow, I'd never thought about it before, but you're right.
 
Ami
instead you have meor hagadol
 
Do you think that's related to (or because of) the sun worship from that time?
 
Ami
which means great illuminator
definitely
 
1:54 PM
That's fascinating. Really interesting stuff.
 
Ray
Very interesting
 
Ami
this could also be used to explain 1:21
the hebrew word there is Tanin
which is usually translated as sea monster
[hold on while I try to find the right wikipedia page...]
Yam, from the Canaanite word Yam, (Hebrew ים) meaning "Sea", also written "Yaw", is one name of the Ugaritic god of Rivers and Sea. Also titled Judge Nahar ("Judge River"), he is also one of the 'ilhm (Elohim) or sons of El, the name given to the Levantine pantheon. Others dispute the existence of the alternative names, claiming it is a mistranslation of a damaged tablet. Despite linguistic overlap, theologically this god is not a part of the later subregional monotheistic theology, but rather is part of a broader and archaic Levantine polytheism. Yam is the deity of the primordial chao...
in ancient pagan mythology the world was created by a battle between "baal" and a sea monster
[Specifically the epic of Ba'al section]
 
@Ami I think your wikipedia link up here should have been this one:
' (written aleph-lamed, e.g. , , , , or etc.) is a Northwest Semitic word meaning "deity", cognate to Akkadian ' and then to Hebrew : Eli and Arabic : Allah). In the Canaanite religion, or Levantine religion as a whole, Eli or Il was the supreme god, the father of humankind and all creatures and the husband of the goddess Asherah as recorded in the clay tablets of Ugarit (modern Rās Shamrā - , Syria). The noun ʾēl was found at the top of a list of gods as the Ancient of gods or the Father of all gods, in the ruins of the royal archive of the Ebla civilization, in the archaeological si...
@Ami This is amazing and really explains a lot.
 
Ami
I'm glad you like it
I got a lot of this from Cassuto
 
Aah. Sounds like an amazing book.
 
Ray
1:58 PM
SO @Ami, would you say El always refers to the pagan deity in the Bible?
 
Ami
definitely not
but it could
El actually means "strength" or "power"
there are plenty of examples of that in the Bible
 
@Ami I can see now why Moses would choose to use multiple names. It insures that God isn't identified as any other pagan god. (such as the "Sons of El"#Canaanite_religion))
Elohim () is a grammatically singular or plural noun for "god" or "gods" in both modern and ancient Hebrew language. When used with singular verbs and adjectives elohim is usually singular, "god" or especially, the God. When used with plural verbs and adjectives elohim is usually plural, "gods" or "powers". It is generally thought that Elohim is a formation from eloah, the latter being an expanded form of the Northwest Semitic noun il (, ʾēl ). It is usually translated as "God" in the Hebrew Bible, referring with singular verbs both to the one God of Israel, and also in a few examples to...
 
Ray
Gotcha
 
That link didn't work... had to onebox it.
 
Ami
@Richard, that could be...but multiple names could create some confusion of its own
 
2:01 PM
@Ami Maybe so. But I think that's why we get commandments (in Exodus) about being the one true god.
 
Ami
[Michah 2:1 - one example of many where El just means "strength/power"]
definitely could be
 
Ray
@Ami good example
Idolatry is huge throughout the old testament
it's what defined whether a king was a good king or a bad king
but it's not without application today
 
Ami
explain
 
Ray
Well there are still a multitude of false gods
that we all worship
we just don't typically talk about them as deities
For example, pride is the worship of self
 
Ami
interesting
 
Ray
2:05 PM
we make sacrifices to honor ourselves, and are destroyed when our god disappoints
same could go for fear of man--worship of others
or anything God has created--money, sex, power
none are inherently bad, but any can easily become an idol that we worship
Calvin said that the heart is a factory of idols
Just makes all of this stuff about paganism as opposed to the God of Christianity all the more relevant
 
Ami
In Judaism it's a little different
Idolatry in Hebrew is called "Avodah Zarah" which means foreign worship
namely, any worship of God that God didn't legally prescribe
 
Ray
Yes, I would agree that the form of idolatry that I'm referring to is a bit of a metaphorical extension
that we make things to be gods in a functional sense
 
Ami
I understand
 

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