Recontructing the Formation of Israel's Religion in the context of Old Testament Biblical Text

Tirta Susila(1*), Latupeirissa Risvan(2)

(1) Institut Agama Kristen Negeri Palangka Raya, Indonesia
(2) Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, Netherlands
(*) Corresponding Author


The Old Testament can be said to be an interpretation of life and beliefs at that time and period, namely in the world and beliefs of ancient Israel. In addition, the Old Testament is often considered the primary source for the history of religion and worship of ancient Israel. In the Old Testament found a presentation and description of the history of the ancestors of Israel as a nation until they entered the land of Canaan, and so on. This paper aims to reconstruct the history of Israel's religion in the context of the Old Testament world. To achieve this goal, the researcher uses a literature approach by analyzing the occurrence of the Old Testament canon, the context of the Old Testament, the history of the Israelites, and Israel's religion. The results of this study conclude that the religion of Israel occurred through the development process of the religious system that existed at that time. The claim that Israel's religion was imported from outside, then came into conflict with the Canaanite religious system basically has no religious historical basis. The emergence of varieties of monotheism that occurred in Israel around the 2nd century BC as recorded by Josephus was the culmination of an inclusive form of monotheism which gradually developed into exclusive monotheism during the Hellenistic period. This indicates that Israel's religious system in the era of the first temple was not monotheistic, but polytheistic which in practice often took the form of henotheism and monolatry. This research is expected to contribute to the study of theological topics, especially in the study of the formation of the nation and religion of Israel.


History; Israel; Old Testament; Reconstruction; Religion of Israel

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