Ancient Eastern Thought and the Old Testament Essay

10688 Words Apr 7th, 2013 43 Pages
LIBERTY UNIVERSITY
THE BIBLE AMONG THE MYTHS JOHN, N. OSWALT

A SUMMARY PAPER OF THE TEXT ANCIENT NEAR EASTERN THOUGHT AND THE OLD TESTAMENT
SUBMITTED
TO DR. RANDY G. HANEY

DEPARTMENT OF THEOLOGY

BY

03 MARCH 2013
Table of Contents

CHAPTER 1: HISTORY AND METHODS 3 CHAPTER 2: COMPARATIVE STUDIES, SCHOLARSHIP, AND THEOLOGY 6 CHAPTER 3: SUMMARY OF THE LITERATURE OF THE ANCIENT NEAR EAST 10 CHAPTER 4: THE GODS 14 CHAPTER 5: TEMPLES AND RITUALS 19 CHAPTER 6: STATE AND FAMILY RELIGION 22 CHAPTER 7: COSMIC GEOGRAPHY 25 CHAPTER 8: COSMOLOGY AND COSMOGONY 28 CHAPTER 9: UNDERSTANDING THE PAST HUMAN ORIGINS AND ROLE 31 CHAPTER 10: UNDERSTANDING THE PAST 34 CHAPTER 11: ENCOUNTERING THE PRESENT 38 CHAPTER 12:
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Challenge to Critical Scholarship
As literature from the Near East became accessible, it became obvious that conclusions reached by the evolutionary theories were unsustainable. Thus the rampant availability of literature revolutionized critical theory, and confirmed that comparative study was capable of impeaching widely accepted theories.
Hermann Gunkel established the first challenge to critical scholarship on the basis of Babylonian texts, wherein he resolved that theories, such as the late dating of Genesis 1, were naïve, pitting comparative scholars against critical scholars. A second challenge resulted as due to the implied correlation between biblical and ancient Near East texts. The challenge, however, does not endeavor to contradict the sources; instead it proposes correctives to the assumptions of the theory.
Resistance to the Use of Comparative studies by Critical Scholars
Resistance to comparative studies concentrated on biblical texts continues; one conclusion is that there are no actual historical proceedings in the text to reconstruct. Biblical text is perceived as redacted history which does not denote exact times or events.
Purists insist that comparative studies are too reliant on generalities that necessitate an assessment tantamount to comparing apples to oranges. Another school of thought prefers to disregard the comparative data and maintains that texts be treated as autonomous

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