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Pete Enns & The Bible for Normal People

Monolatry: The Israelites Believed in Many Gods

In this episode of The Bible for Normal People Podcast, Pete talks about monolatry, and he explores the following questions:

  • What is monolatry?
  • If Israel believed that many gods existed, why was their God Yahweh the only deity worthy of worship?
  • What does Psalm 95 tell us about what the Israelites believed?
  • If the Israelites were monolatrous, how do they explain the greatness of Yahweh?
  • Where did the divine name come from? And what’s up with “Lᴏʀᴅ”?
  • Who is the king of all of the gods?
  • How do the plagues help us understand the theology of monolatry?
  • What’s with the beef between Yahweh and the egyptian gods?
  • What did fertility have to do with theology in the ancient world?
  • What does monolatry have to do with all the idol talk in the bible?
  • What do the judgements passed on the kings of Israel have to do with worshiping the gods of other nations?
  • Who is the Satan in God’s heavenly board meeting?
  • What is the Divine Council?
  • What do we do with these images of heavenly board meetings and divine councils in the Bible?
  • How is god talked about in ancient tribal cultures and how do we respect that?

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This week Biblical Scholar Dr. Sylvia Keesmaat and Theologian Dr. Brian Walsh talk about what Paul was up to in the book of Romans. We visit topics like salvation and politics and how maybe those words don’t mean what we thought when it comes to the New Testament.

Tweetables

Pithy, shareable, less-than-280-character statements you can share. 

  • “It seems to me that asking the question of atonement in Romans, is perhaps asking the wrong question.” Brian Walsh
  • “Basically, [I] try to help people imagine what it’s like to live into this story, and try to imagine what it was like for people in the 1st-century to live into this story, and what we might learn from that.” Sylvia Keesmaat

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