Thursday, September 26, 2019

Judaism is Not the Faith of Abraham

Alice C. Linsley

The Apostle Paul wrote a great deal about the Messianic Faith and how it is expressed in the promises made to Abraham the Hebrew. Paul stresses that those who follow Jesus Messiah have been made partakers of those ancient promises (Galatians 3:7-9). He exposes as a false teaching the Judaizers' insistence that the Messianic Faith requires adherence to the laws of Judaism.

Many misconceptions surround the person of Abraham. He is not the founder of Judaism. He was not a Jew. He is identified as "Hebrew" in the Bible and the Hebrew were a caste of priests and rulers with deep roots in antiquity. The English word Hebrew and its variants 'Apriu, Abru, Hapiru, Habiru, appear in texts that date to before Abraham's time. Abraham's faith was received from his Hebrew ancestors. The oldest known site of Horite Hebrew worship at Nekhen dates to 4000 BC, about 2000 years before Abraham.

Many people think that Christianity emerged out of Judaism, but the core belief of the Messianic Faith is that the son of God would take on flesh, be sacrificed, and rise again. This belief was already evident among Abraham’s Horite Hebrew people before 3000 BC. They believed in God Father (Ra or Ani) and God Son (Horus or Enki). Jews reject the very idea that God has a son. Yet the Scriptures say that it is impossible to be saved unless one believes that Jesus is the son of God (Genesis 3:15; Proverbs 30:4, Hosea 11:1; Luke 1:35; John 3:14-17; John 6:40; John 6:69-70; John 20:31; 1 John 5:13). This is why the Apostle Paul speaks of believers being grafted into Abraham, not Judaism. Judaism is not the faith of Abraham the Hebrew.

In Galatians 3, he identifies Abraham’s Seed as Jesus Messiah. In verse 29, Paul explains, “If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, and heirs according to the promise” made to Abraham.

Abraham was not a Jew. He is called “Hebrew” is the Bible, and his territory extended between Hebron and Beersheba. In Abraham's time, this region was ruled by the Horite Hebrew and was called Edom. The Greeks called it Idumea, meaning “land of red people.” You will recall that Esau of Edom is described as red, and David, who had Edomite blood, also is described as ruddy or red.

Some of the Horite Hebrew rulers of Edom are listed in Genesis 36 (shown on the diagram above). The great antiquity of the Horite Hebrew of Edom is verified in Genesis 36:31, “These are the kings who ruled in the land of Edom before any king ruled over the Israelites.”

The Messianic tradition upon which the Church stands is revealed in the Bible. It is the tradition of the Horite Hebrew who believed in God Father and God Son. The Horite Hebrew are called “Horim” by Jews, which means parents or ancestors. Jesus lived in a Jewish context which did not recognize him as the fulfillment of the expectations of the Horim. This is because by Jesus’ time, Judaism was only tangentially related to the faith of Abraham.

Certainly, early Christian worship was patterned on the synagogue, with scripture readings, prayers, homilies, and days of feasting and fasting. The east-facing altar is patterned on the Horite Hebrew temple, as are church furnishings such as the tabernacle and the lamp. However, Christianity alone affirms that Messiah is the Son of God. Judaism and Islam reject the very idea that God has a son.

Judaism is the elaboration of rabbinic thought over 3000 years, and though it claims Abraham as its founder, Abraham was not a Jew. Prominent Jews readily admit this.

Rabbi Stephen F. Wise, former Chief Rabbi of the United States, wrote: "The return from Babylon and the introduction of the Babylonian Talmud mark the end of Hebrewism and the beginning of Judaism. This break came around 700 BC, at least 1300 years after Abraham.

For Jews, the greatest authority is the Talmud. Consider SUNY professor, Robert Goldberg’s explanation: “The traditional Jew studies Talmud because it communicates ultimate truth—truth about God, truth about the world, and most important, truth about how God wants the holy community of Israel to live.”

The Rabbis are trained in argumentation and the Talmud is a record of their disputations. One drawback is the tendency of the rabbis to debate minutiae and esoteric matters. Over time the Messianic Faith of Abraham - the main thing - became peripheral. The Talmud came to be of greater authority than the Hebrew Scriptures.

The Talmud encourages this. Consider this Talmudic exhortation: “My son, be more careful in the observance of the words of the Scribes than in the words of the Torah." (Talmud Erubin 21b), and this: "My son, give heed to the words of the scribes rather than to the words of the law." This also, "He who transgresses the words of the Scribes sins more gravely than the transgressors of the words of the Law." (Sanhedrin X, 3 f.88b)

In a 2007 NOVA interview Rabbi Shaye Cohen (Professor of Hebrew Literature and Philosophy at Harvard) admitted that Abraham was not a Jew, and he explains that, nevertheless, the narrative of Judaism presents him as the first Jew as a place to start. In other words, the narrative of Judaism ignores the biblical data about Abraham’s ancestors in Genesis 3, 4, 5, 10 and 11. It is in those early chapters that we find the anthropologically significant data about the origin of the Messianic Faith among Abraham’s ancestors.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Killing and Dying to "Marry" Virgins

Fellow 9-11 conspirators Ziad Jarrah and Mohamed Atta laughing a year before the 2001 attack.

Who are the Houris mentioned in the Quran? Many Muslims believe they are buxom maidens to be enjoyed by martyrs in the afterlife. In a note to his fellow hijackers, September 11 ringleader Mohamed Atta reminded them of their impending "marriage in Paradise" to the 72 virgins mentioned in the Quran. Islamic extremists refer to suicide bombing as a "wedding to the black-eyed in eternal Paradise."

The German scholar Christoph Luxenberg says the "houris" with "swelling breasts" refers instead to "white raisins" and "juicy fruits" and are symbolic of the restoration of the lushness of Paradise. Luxenberg's research was featured in a Newsweek article titled "Challenging the Quran" on 28 July 2003.

Dr. Maher Hathout argues that Luxenberg is wrong about the Houris being raisins and fruits. Hathout explains, "It is his [Luxenberg's] prerogative but this does not provide anything supernatural to look forward to the life of eternity. It seems that what he was referring to as raisins is 'kawaib.' Dr. Hathout argues that the Arabic meaning of "beings with swollen breasts" refers to "beings of distinction."

Dr. Hathout is correct. The beings of distinction are mentioned in the Bible. They are designated by the bi-consonantal root HR in the Arabic word Houris. There are no written vowels in Arabic and Hebrew. Before Islam, this ancient root HR referred to Horite/Horus/Hur. The root HR corresponds to the words Horite (English) and Horim (Hebrew). It appears that Jews and Muslims are drawing on some shared older tradition. The Horite priesthood is older than both Judaism and Islam by thousands of years.

The Horite rulers are described as "mighty men" and heroes. They are portrayed as deified rulers, men of wisdom, and members of the heavenly council. 

In Revelation 15:2 we read that seven angelic beings (Horim?) come out of the temple to pour out the wrath of God upon the earth from seven bowls. Some Bible scholars have noted that these servants are vested as priests.

Revelation 20 speaks of 24 rulers who sit on thrones and who will judge the world for 1000 years. These are "them that were beheaded for their witness of Jesus, and for the word of God." Revelation 20:6 describes them as "priests of God and of Christ."

Horite rulers and judges are called "elohiym" because they reflected the divine majesty and power. Numerous passages in Exodus use elohiym in this sense:

Exodus 4:16 -“Moreover, he [Aaron] shall speak for you [Moses] to the people; and it shall come about that he shall be as a mouth for you, and you shall be as gods [elohiym] to him.”

Exodus 7:1 - Then the Lord said to Moses, “See, I make you as gods [elohiym] to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron shall be your prophet.”

Exodus 21: 6 - “Then his master shall bring him to the gods [elohiym] (the rulers who render judgement?) then he shall bring him to the door or the doorpost. And his master shall pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him permanently.”

Exodus 22:8,9 -“If the thief is not caught, then the owner of the house shall appear before the judges [elohiym], to determine whether he laid his hands on his neighbor’s property. For every breach of trust, whether it is for ox, for donkey, for sheep, for clothing, or for any lost thing about which one says, ‘This is it,’ the case of both parties shall come before the judges [elohiym]; he whom the judges [elohiym] condemn shall pay double to his neighbor.”

Virgin Girls and Boys

It appears that given a Muslim's sexual preference, both virgin girls and boys are motivation to be martyred. In popular Islam, both are believed to be at the service of martyrs in Paradise. The big breasted, beautiful eyed, golden hair and fair skin women have a counterpart in the tender aged (Khudam) servant boys with skin like pearls.

Here are the references in the Quran to the eternal servant boys:

There will circulate among them [servant] boys [especially] for them, as if they were pearls well-protected. (52:24)

There will circulate among them young boys made eternal. (56:17)

There will circulate among them young boys made eternal. When you see them, you would think them [as beautiful as] scattered pearls. (76:19)

Servant boys from Horite Hebrew families served the Horite ruler-priests. Samuel was a young boy who served the High Priest Eli. It was not unusual for children to be dedicated to the temple where they lived as servants.

This icon shows the Virgin Mary weaving purple thread.

One theory about Mary is that she was a dedicated temple virgin whose duties included drawing water and weaving. The connection between the Virgin Mary and weaving is found in non-canonical books. The Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew (chapter 9) describes how Mary and other virgins were spinning thread in the Temple compound. Carrying a pitcher, Mary went out to a fountain where the angel said to her, "Blessed art thou, Mary; for in thy womb thou hast prepared an habitation for the Lord." The next day the angel appeared to her again while she is spinning.

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Amram's Children

Alice C. Linsley

Amram fathered at least three sons and a daughter by two wives. This two-wife custom is typical of the marriage and ascendancy pattern of the Horite Hebrew ruler-priests. We find the custom with Lamech the Elder (Gen. 4), Terah, Abraham, Esau, Jacob, Amram, Moses, and Samuel's father Elkanah.

Abraham had two wives: Sarah and Keturah. Esau the Elder had two wives: Judith (Adah?) and Basemath. Esau the Younger had two wives: Oholibamah and Mahalath. Amram had two wives: Jochebed and Ishar. Moses had two wives: the "Kushite" bride (his half-sister) and the Midianite bride, Zipporah (his patrilineal cousin). Elkanah had two wives: Penninah and Hannah.

The evidence of kinship analysis indicates that Jochebed was Amram's half-sister, not "his father's sister" as claimed by the Deuteronomist Historian (Exodus 6:18, 6:20Numbers 3:19), a much later source of information. In 1 Samuel 10:14 and Leviticus 10:4 דוד dod signifies an uncle. It can also signify an uncle's son: compare Jeremiah 32:8 with Exodus 6:12, where the Vulgate renders דדי dodi as patruelis mei, my paternal cousin. In Amos 6:10, for דודו dodo, the Targum has קריביה karibiah, meaning a near relation. The evidence supports the view that Jochebed was Amram's patrilineal cousin, and not his aunt.

It appears that Jochebed was the mother of Aaron, Miriam, and Moses, and that Aaron was the oldest of the three. Jochebed and Amram had the same father (Kohath) but different mothers. This is true also for Abraham and Sarah. Their father was Terah, but they had different mothers.

Amram's second wife was Ishar, the daughter of Korah the Elder. Her first born son was named Korah, after her father, following the Horite Hebrew practice of the cousin bride naming her first born son after her father. Korah the Younger belonged to the household of Korah the Elder, not to the household of his biological father. This is typical of the marriage and ascendancy pattern of the Horite Hebrew.

It appears that all these children were born in Egypt. They were Horite Hebrew, a caste of priests dedicated to God Father and God's son called Horus. Some of the Horite Hebrew rulers are listed in Genesis 36. They are associated with the high places in Edom. Horite high places were found in many regions of the ancient world. In the Pyramid Texts (2613-2181 BC) these elevated shrines and temples are called "Horite mounds."

Amram's name means "the people are exalted." This refers to the high status of the Horite Hebrew in the ancient world. They were known for their strict devotion to the High God and his son and for their purity and sobriety. Herodotus observed II:37:
"They are religious excessively beyond all other men, and with regard to this they have customs as follows: they drink from cups of bronze and rinse them out every day, and not some only do this but all: they wear garments of linen always newly washed, and this they make a special point of practice: they circumcise themselves for the sake of cleanliness, preferring to be clean rather than comely. The priests shave themselves all over their body every other day, so that no lice or any other foul thing may come to be upon them when they minister to the gods; and the priests wear garments of linen only and sandals of papyrus, and any other garment they may not take nor other sandals; these wash themselves in cold water twice in the day and twice again in the night; and other religious services they perform (one may almost say) of infinite number."
Likewise, Plutarch noted that the “priests of the Sun at Heliopolis [biblical On] never carry wine into their temples, for they regard it as indecent for those who are devoted to the service of any god to indulge in the drinking of wine whilst they are under the immediate inspection of their Lord and King. The priests of the other deities are not so scrupulous in this respect, for they use it, though sparingly.”

Amram's father was Kohath. He also was a priest. One of Amram's sons has the priestly name of Korah. "Korah" refers to a priest who shaves his body as part of a cleansing ritual in preparation for his time of service in the temple or shrine. Korah, a son of Ishar, is mentioned in Numbers 16:1.

Jews pose Aaron as the founder of the Jewish priesthood, but the roots of the Hebrew priesthood are found much earlier. They are found in ancient Egypt and in Edom. In fact, Aaron was buried in Edom, one of the territories ruled by the Horite Hebrew.

Aaron's Tomb on the summit of Mount Harun in ancient Edom.
(Photo credit: Ferrell Jenkins)

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Joel in Anthropological Perspective

Alice C. Linsley

Joel is a book with some significant anthropological details about the religious life of the kingdom of Judah after the time of Solomon's son Rehoboam. Rehoboam was the first king of Judah. To the north of Judah was the kingdom of Israel. The first king of Israel was Jeroboam.

Both kingdoms strayed from God's calling to be a people devoted to Him and to be a light to the nations. God sent prophets to both kingdoms to call them to repentance. Both kingdoms were to remember God's power to save from sin and to restore fellowship with Him.

In the northern kingdom of Israel there were two centers of worship, one at Bethel and the other at Dan. These were shrines at high elevations. The central image at these shrines was the golden calf, the same image that was fabricated by the Horite Hebrew priest Aaron. It represents a bull calf that is to be sacrificed to make atonement for the sins of the people.

The sacrificial bull calf was shown overshadowed by the sun, a sign of divine appointment for the Horite Hebrew. This is a Messianic image. Aaron is not criticized for making this image. However, the people are criticized for worshiping the image. Here a distinction must be made between the symbolism of the golden bull calf and the actions of the people. To express this for people today, we might speak of the distinction between worshiping the cross instead of the Messiah who was sacrificed on the cross.

In the southern kingdom of Judah, the only center of worship was at the Temple in Jerusalem. The fate of Judah and the Temple is described as the destruction that comes after swarms of locusts. This is an image of waves of invading warriors that leave nothing behind them.

The drama of agricultural devastation is central to the theme. Seeds shrivel under clods of dry earth. The fig, pomegranate, palm, and apple trees are barren and withered. Here is an image of faithless Judah (probably around 350 BC). The theme of Joel is the need for repentance in order for the land, the people, and Jerusalem to be restored.

The priests of the Temple weep because there is no wine or grain to offer before the LORD, and there is no oil for anointing. Gladness dries up (Joel 1:12 and 1:16). This constitutes a call to repentance, a time of mourning and fasting. The prophet is warning the people of Judah to repent.

The people are being warned by the sounding of the shofar (shown above) from the ramparts of Zion. There is time to heed the prophet's warning. As bad as circumstances are, Joel declares that things will get worse for Judah and all the nations because the "day of the LORD" brings darkness and gloom, earth quakes, eclipses, and a blood moon. The stars cease to shine. The apocalyptic imagery so popular during that period is used to emphasize the cosmic impact of human faithlessness. "Yet even now" says the LORD - "Turn back to Me with all your hearts...turn back to the Lord your God. For He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger, abounding in kindness...: (Joel 2:13). The LORD promises restoration, as with Job and Naomi (Joel 2:25 and 3:1).

The curved ram's horn represents the warrior defending his stronghold. The ram's horn, called shofar, was blown at the high places to sound the alarm and to call the warriors to arms. The ram is often spoken of in terms of war, perhaps one reason the great warrior Alexander found it a compelling image. His image appeared on coins with him wearing the ram's horns (shown below). Consider also the conflict that arises between the ram and the he-goat in Daniel 8.

The ram provided by God on Mount Moriah was a symbol of the son of God, Horus. Horus was said to rise in the east as a lamb and set in the west as a ram in mature strength. He was called Horus of the two horizon, which expressed two aspects of his nature as both meek and fierce. The ram was shown as the divinely appointed sacrifice on ancient monuments, and was a symbol of Jesus among early Christians.

Little personal information is provided about the writer. His name in Hebrew is Yo' El. Some sources says this means "Yahu is God." Yahu was a common name for the High God in Judah. Numerous official seals (bullae) have been found in Jerusalem excavations with the divine name Yahu. Royal officials attached the name to their names. Examples include Hilqi-Yahu, Shebna-Yahu, and Palti-Yahu. 

Palti-Yahu was an official in time of King Zedekiah of Judah (Ezekiel 11:1,13). A seal with the name Shebna-Yahu appeared on the lintel of a tomb at Siloam in Jerusalem. Shebna-yahu may have been the High Priest Shebna during the time of King Hezekiah. Another seal from the 7th century B.C. names Hanan, son of the priest Hilqi-Yahu, the priest. Hilqiyahu is better known as Hilkiah. Hilkiah was the High Priest during the reign of Josiah.

In the ancient world, royal officials commonly affixed the names of God to their names or titles. A Horite Hebrew priest served as a vizier to Amenhotep III and his son, Akhenaten. The ruler-priest's name was Abdiel, meaning "servant of El." His Egyptian title was ‘Apir-El, which means priest servant of El.

It is also possible that Yo' El means "El reigns over all" or "El appoints." El is another name for God among the ancient Hebrew. This aligns with what we are told about Yo' El's father. In verse 1, we read that Joel is the son of Petu'El. Petuel or Pethuel is said to be an Aramaic name, but it resembles the ancient Egyptian word PT which means sky or heaven. In ancient Egyptian nb pt means "lord of heaven." So Petu'El could refer to the God of heaven. Joel may be claiming to be a deified "son" of God. For the original readers this certainly would have lent great authority to Joel's message.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

The Horite Hebrew Wisdom of Elihu

Alice C. Linsley

"There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job..." (Job 1:1)

Job was a Horite Hebrew of the clan of Uz. Uz was a grandson of Seir the Horite ruler of Edom (Genesis 36). Edom was where Abraham the Hebrew settled. Jeremiah speaks of Edom as one of the ancient seats of wisdom.

The divine name YHWH was known among the Horite Hebrew of Edom before the time of Moses. According to Jewish tradition, Moses was born around 1393 BC. However, the name YHWH appears in connection to the Seirites of Edom as early as 1500 BC. Lists of place names in the Nubian temples of Soleb and Amara West record six toponyms associated with the Horites of Edom, “the land of Shasu.” A monument of Ramesses II claims that he “has plundered the Shasu-land, captured the mountain of Seir; a 19th Dynasty letter mentions “the Shasu-tribes of Edom,” and Ramesses III declares that he has “destroyed the Seirites among the tribes of the Shasu.”

The description of Job fits that of the Horite Hebrew ruler-priests. Though accused of being a sinner by his friends, Job was a righteous man who "feared God and shunned evil" (Job 1:1). He rose early to offer prayers and burnt offerings for his children, one by one. He comes to be afflicted by a "ha-satan," the Accuser. Satan's power is limited as he is a creation. He must ask God's permission to afflict God's servant and God puts limits on what Satan may do to Job. The Hebrew did not regard God and Satan as equals. The faith of Abraham was not dualistic.

The trial of Job in which Satan acts as the accuser parallels Zechariah 3:2-6 where Satan accuses the High Priest Joshua (Yeshua/Jesus). In that trial God acquits Joshua and commands that he be clothed in pure garments and crowned with two crowns (ataroth). This points to Jesus who, as the Son of God, would wear a double crown according to Horite Hebrew expectation. The double crown represents how Messiah unites two peoples: the faithful of Israel (Old Covenant) and the faithful of the Church (New Covenant).

Elihu is the last of Job's kin to speak. In Strong's Concordance Elihu is said to mean "He is my God". However, it is more likely that the name relates to God's Word since El refers to God and hu was a Horite word for the divine Word that overcomes chaos. Hu refers to the authoritative word in ancient Egyptian belief and is mentioned in the Old Kingdom Pyramid texts (PT 251, PT 697). There is a close resemblance to the Logos of John's Prologue in that Hu is depicted as the falcon of the Son of God, or the ram, the totem of the Son that overcomes death. (A ram was provided for sacrifice on Mt. Moriah).

Elihu is of the clan of Buz. Buz, Huz and Uz were a three-clan Hebrew confederation. I Chronicles 5:14 tells us that the son of Buz was Jahdo (Hebrew Yahdo), and Jahdo's son was Yeshishai, the Aramaic form of Yeshua/Jesus. With the names Yahdo and Yeshishai we see the initial Canaanite Y that indicates a divinely appointed ruler.

Assuming that Elihu is an historical person, he likely was the brother-in-law of Tamar's son Hezron. (See dark triangle below.) Tamar was the daughter of a shrine priest. This suggests that Elihu lived with his father Barachel in the territory of Buz, but belonged to the household of Elihu, his maternal grandfather, also a priest. Elihu's mother would have been the daughter of Elihu the Elder. In other words, we have further evidence of intermarriage between two Horite Hebrew lines: the ruler-priest lines of Judah and Elihu the Elder.

Evidence of endogamy among the Hebrew Lines of Judah and Elihu (2019)

   Judah                                                    Elihu the Elder
      ∆    =   O Tamar                                                                       ∆
                       Hezron  ∆  =  O Elihu the Younger’s sister                                 O Elihu’s mother
                                                                                                                              Elihu the Younger

Both Elihu the Elder and Elihu the Younger were of the ruler-priest caste and ancestors of King David. Elihu the Younger takes us beyond the wisdom of Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar. He moves us from the retributive justice espoused by Job's three friends to the reality that "God is greater than any human being. Why then quarrel with Him for not replying to you word for word? God speaks first one way and then in another, although we do not realize it." (Job 33:12-14 NJB)

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Blaming the Evil Canaanites

These standing stone at Tell Gezer date to the period of the standing stones erected on Salisbury Plain in England around 2500 BC. Photo: Dennis Cole

Alice C. Linsley

There were many religious practices among the Canaanites, but most of the shrines and temples were at elevated sites, called "high places" in the Bible. Most of the high places of the Judean and Edomite hills were under Egyptian control from about 2000 to 1178 BC.

In Hebrew, the high places and fortified mounds are called "ophel" (Hebrew עֹ֫פֶל). The root of the word ophel is OP and pertains to a complex of interrelated ideas: seeing (optic); armed guards (opiltes); walled towns (oppida), and sun shrines (O'piru) served by a caste of priests known in the ancient world as Abru, Ha'piru, Ha'biru and 'Apiru. Abru is the Akkadian word for priest, and the English word Hebrew come from the word Habiru.

Through archaeology and biblical anthropology, we have come to know a great deal about the peoples who lived in Canaan. Their shrines were built at high elevations near water systems and they were later fortified. They were masters of stone work and left behind standing stones of monumental proportions such as those at Tell Gezer.

The term "Canaanite" refers to many different peoples, some of whom were ethnically Nilotic. Genesis 10:15-19, traces the Canaanite peoples to an otherwise unknown descendant of Noah named "Canaan."
"Canaan fathered the Sidon his first-born, then Heth, and the Jebusites, the Amorites, Girgashites, Hivites, Arkites, Sinites, Arvadites, Zemarites and Hamathites. Later Canaanite clans spread out. The Canaanite frontier stretched from Sidon all the way to Gerar near Gaza and all the way to Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah and Zeboiim near Lehsa."

There were Horite Hebrew priests at many of the Canaanite shrines long before the Jews returned there from Babylonian exile. The Deuteronomist is a post-exilic source with an agenda. The Deuteronomist Historian presents the Canaanites as decadent, idolatrous, and deserving of being displaced from the land, even exterminated. Doubtless, there were practices surrounding fertility that were contrary to the purity code of the Horite Hebrew. These made it easy to cast all Canaanites as decadent.

The Deuteronomist mentions the destruction of Jericho, a pre-pottery Neolithic (PPN) settlement (10,500 to 9,500 BC) whose prestige as a fortified shrine city surpassed that of Jerusalem. There is evidence of competition here.

The Deuteronomist's main concerns were to establish Jerusalem as the only place of worship for Jews as a way of melding the people into a nation. The Deuteronomist encourages the destruction of all high places except Jerusalem. The targets to be destroyed were the bamot. Bamot is the plural form of the word bamah, meaning high or exalted. The word appears in names like Oholibamah and Obamah.

The Deuteronomist revises the history of Abraham's Horite Hebrew people to present a narrative about Moses and the Law that serves to strengthen Jewish identity.The focus is shifted from the archaic Hebrew rulers and their hope for a Righteous Ruler conceived by divine overshadowing and destined to rise from the grave to centralized worship at the Jerusalem temple. This source is also responsible for reshaping the Passover and Tabernacles into national observances. He promotes the power of the Jerusalem elite, and Israel’s possession of the land. This is the beginning of political Zionism.

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Elements of the Messianic Faith in Early Hinduism

Alice C. Linsley

Hinduism has many layers that developed over time. As a religion, Hinduism reached its zenith in the Axial Age (900-200 BC). Today there are at least 10 Hindu schools of thought. However, at the earliest level, the Vedic texts reveals the influence of the Horite Hebrew who moved into the Indus River Valley. The earliest known site of Horite Hebrew worship, Nekhen on the Nile, dates to 3800 BC.

The earliest civilization of the Indus Valley is that of Harappa (2500–1700 BC). In Dravidian Harappa means "Horus is father." This stone relief is at Agkhor Wat. It shows Horus in the form of his falcon totem perched on the mast of Ra's solar boat. The etiology of Anghor Wat is also telling. Wat means village, town, settlement, or shrine. Anghor is ankh-Hor which means "Long live Horus!"

In Mannika's best-known work, "Angkor Wat: Time, Space and Kingship" she argues that the dimensions, alignment, and bas-reliefs of Angkor Wat speak of Suryavarman II as the divinely appointed king.

The idea of a universal king who is divinely appointed to rule is much older than Angkor Wat. It is found in the oldest layers of Hindu thought. The Sanskrit word cakravartin and the Pali word cakkavattin refer to a righteous king who rules over the entire world. His "messianic" rule is called sar-vabhauma. From Africa to Nepal the words sar and sarki refer to rulers and priests. The Akkadian word "sar" means king. This is the root of the royal title Sar-gon, which means High King or King of Kings. Nimrod's Akkadian name was Šarru-kīnu, which is usually translated “the true king.”

Messianic expectation appears to have originated among the Horite Habiru (Hebrew), a priest caste that served in the temples and shrines of the archaic world. The Habiru were in the service of the "mighty men of old" (Genesis 10), the early kingdom builders like Nimrod. Nimrod was a Kushite kingdom builder (Genesis 10:8) and the language of his territory was Akkadian.

At its earliest levels of development, Hinduism is older than Judaism, but not older than the Hebrew faith. The Rig Veda, the oldest Vedic text dates to between 1900 and 1200 BC, after the time of Abraham the Hebrew. Judaism emerges closer to 700 BC. The term "samhita" refers to the most ancient layer of text in the Vedas. Parts of the Vedic Samhitas constitute the oldest layer of Hindu tradition and include material that resembles Horite Hebrew concepts.

In the Rig Veda, for example, the number seven is sacred, and the Word of God is called Speech and is described as "a loving wife, finely robed." She resembles the Wisdom of Sirach (Ecclesiasticus), personified as a female (Sirach 24:8). In Sirach, Wisdom declares that she “came forth from the mouth of the Most High” as the first-born before all creatures.

In Srimad Bhagavatam 10:16 we find a parallel to Genesis 3:15 where we are told that the serpent's head will be crushed under the feet of the Woman's Son. The Hindu text reads: "The Ancient Man danced on the serpent, who still spewed poison from his eyes and hissed loudly in his anger, and he trampled down with his feet whatever head the serpent raised, subduing him calmly..." (Cited in Andrew Wilson, Ed. World Scriptures, p. 449.)

The same idea is found in Psalm 91:12-13 - "They will bear you up in their hands, that you do not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread upon the lion and cobra, the young lion and the serpent you will trample down."

However, this expectation was expressed about 1000 years before Psalm 91 in the Pyramid Texts. "Horus has shattered (tbb, crushed) the mouth of the serpent with the sole of his foot (tbw)" (Utterance 388)

Scholars from India acknowledge the Nile-Indus connections. The Indian archaeologist, B. B. Lal contends that the Dravidians came from the Upper Nile (Nubia/Kush). Lal writes:
"At Timos the Indian team dug up several megalithic sites of ancient Nubians which bear an uncanny resemblance to the cemeteries of early Dravidians which are found all over Western India from Kathiawar to Cape Comorin. The intriguing similarity extends from the subterranean structure found near them. Even the earthenware ring-stands used by the Dravidians and Nubians to hold pots were identical."
The Indian historian and anthropologist Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan has written: "We have to begin with the Negroid or Negrito people of prehistoric India who were the first human inhabitants. Originally they would appear to have come from Africa through Arabia and the coastlands of Iran and Baluchistan."

The Indian scholar Malati J. Shendge has concluded that the language of the Harappans of the Indus Valley was Akkadian, the language of the territory of Nimrod the Kushite. The Bible scholar, E.A. Speiser, found that names taken to be Indo-European were often labeled "Hurrian" [Horite] only to be identified eventually as Akkadian. The Horites were widely dispersed and spoke the languages of the people among whom they lived. Thus scholars today use terms like Hurro-Akkadian, Hurro-Urartian, and Canaano-Akkadian.

The Indian linguist Ajay Pratap Singh explains,"Comparisons of Akkadian and Sanskrit words yielded at least 400 words in both languages with comparable phonetic and semantic similarities. Thus Sanskrit has, in fact, descended from Akkadian."