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Greg Jennings
September 30th, 2015, 02:11 AM
This is not a question meant to rock anyone's belief system. It's just a hypothetical based on my observations regarding the Old Testament. So nobody freak out here.

In the old testament there is reference to Semitic polytheism. An example would be the Jews worshipping a golden calf in Exodus as well as references to Canaanite gods El and Baal. It could be argued that El is YHWH as he is referred to as El and Elohim throughout the old testament. My question is this: does it seem to anyone else that maybe El was the 'victor' among the chief Semitic gods? And due to this he was the only one worshipped by the Jews and to this day is still the only one worshipped?

Remember I'm not trying to rock the boat here. Just posing a question about the transition from old testament polytheism to monotheism. If this question offends you feel free to not answer

Bradley D
October 1st, 2015, 08:48 PM
El or Elohim can refer to as all might, divine majesty, and power. Thus combing all the attributes of gods and giving them to God.

Ktoyou
October 1st, 2015, 08:52 PM
Remember I'm not trying to rock the boat here.

I doubt there is any real concern.

keypurr
October 1st, 2015, 10:06 PM
YHWH is the only true God.

Neopatriarch
October 2nd, 2015, 02:39 PM
There are no other real gods. He is greatest among the false gods and idols of man. That is what the Bible teaches. Nothing about polytheism.

dialm
October 2nd, 2015, 02:40 PM
It is impossible to understand the Old Testament god. Best to stick with something we can understand. Christ is our friend. We can understand friendship. It does say that Abraham was God's friend. But we don't really know who Abraham is.

We do know who Moses was. He was the guy who sorted out the Law.

But there are a multitude of names for the Old Testament God. More than three names and the subject becomes very complicated. Here are the three names I use-

Father
Son
Holy Spirit

Neopatriarch
October 2nd, 2015, 04:57 PM
It is impossible to understand the Old Testament god.
Could you flesh this thought out a little? Is there significance in your use of the lower case g in the word god?

Neopatriarch
October 2nd, 2015, 05:04 PM
[QUOTE=dialm;4474022] Christ is our friend. We can understand friendship. /QUOTE]

John 15:14
You are my friends if you do what I command you.

Huckleberry
October 2nd, 2015, 05:14 PM
It is impossible to understand the Old Testament god. I have to disagree with this. He describes Himself pretty well in the OT and I think the reason we have to OT is, in part, to understand Him.

I really don't think it's possible to have a relationship with Christ without an understanding of Jehovah. In fact, I don't think you can understand either without the other. The (I think) logical point of each being a part of the Trinity not even withstanding.

Wick Stick
October 2nd, 2015, 05:17 PM
My question is this: does it seem to anyone else that maybe El was the 'victor' among the chief Semitic gods? And due to this he was the only one worshipped by the Jews and to this day is still the only one worshipped?
That isn't how the transition from polytheism to monotheism has happened, historically.

What *has* happened is that there has been a bridge religion, in which only one God "above all" is recognized, and the rest of the pantheon of gods are re-cast as being attributes or emanations of THE God.

For instance, Valentinian gnosticism believes in just one supreme god - Bythus. The other 30+ "gods" or "archons" are all simply emanations of Bythus.

Essentially, it's a convenient cheat that allows a person to affirm monotheism while still participating in the same old rituals associated with a whole pantheon's worth of deities.

*somethingsomethingcoughtrinity*

Jarrod