Design a site like this with
Get started

Yahweh Roars from Zion | Amos 1:2

What we have in Amos 1:2 is not a simple statement of divine authority; that these judgements come from Yahweh, but an ideological statement of Judah and Jerusalem that they come from the correct Yahweh — the Yahweh of Jerusalem. We can thus imagine that it was somewhere in this clash of Yahwistic symbols that the germ was planted of the aniconic Yahweh of later Judaism. Where both Samaria and Jerusalem — and many other Yahwistic temples in Israel and Judah — had visual representations of their god, this conflict between the bull-Yahweh of Samaria and the lion-Yahweh of Judah ultimately assisted in the process which ended with the complete prohibition of graven images of Yahweh or any other god (Deuteronomy 5:8–9).

David’s Temple in Jerusalem | 2 Samuel 12:20

What is actually then presented to the reader of 2 Samuel 12 is a seventh or sixth century BCE retrojection; from a time after the 722 destruction of Samaria (and the northern kingdom of Israel) by the Assyrians, when Jerusalem was the only remaining Hebrew kingdom and at a time when the sacrificial cult of Yahwism was centralised (or was in the process of being centralised) in the city. We are then left with the problem of why later editors — of which there were many — overlooked or elected to leave this temple in 2 Samuel 12. It is unlikely to have been an oversight. A temple of Yahweh in Jerusalem when there wasn’t meant to be one is simply too much of an oversight, so we must accept that there was a temple in the city of Jerusalem in the tenth century. Yet, this need not have been, as Römer asserts, a temple of Yahweh.

Origins of Yahweh | Deuteronomy 33:2

Deuteronomy, widely accepted in biblical scholarship as the central theological document of the deuteronomistic editors, represents a later stage in the development of Israelite religion. This much is certain. Yet, as a redaction of earlier traditions and texts, it preserves fragments or memories of earlier Israelite and Judahite beliefs about their tutelary deity, Yahweh; ‘the God of Israel.’ In a number of texts (Deuteronomy 33 and Judges 5, for example) we are given an insight into the earliest origins of Yahwism in Israel, and at the heart of this is the idea that Yahweh was not always the god of Israel and that he originally came from outside of the land of Israel.