Yahweh

Article

August 20, 2022

Yahweh (Heb. ‏יְהֹוָה,‎ is sometimes expressed by the Greek term Tetragramma, "four-lettered") is the God of the ancient Israelites. Originally, Yahweh was probably considered one of the many gods of the Middle East until the Israelites began to worship him instead of other gods. Later, the religion of the Israelites developed into monotheistic Judaism, i.e. the existence of other gods was forbidden. At the very end, during the Babylonian captivity, the Jews began to see Yahweh as the only God of the whole world, who created the whole world and ruled over all nations. Not only Judaism, but also other monotheistic religions with an old Semitic cultural heritage, such as Christianity and Islam, were formed on the basis of Yahweh. Modern Jews do not use the name Yahweh.

History

According to Karen Armstrong (1993), Yahweh may have originally been the warrior god and volcano god of the Midianites, because Yahweh appeared to Moses for the first time in Midian. The books of Moses often refer to Abraham and others from the second millennium BCE. to the God of the Hebrews under the name Yahweh, but most likely they still worshiped other pagan gods, such as the Canaanite god Ēli and his wife Ashera. Asherah was apparently Yahweh's mother at that time, but later as Yahweh's position became stronger, she was seen as Yahweh's spouse, who was eventually completely displaced by Yahweh. With the story of the escape from Egypt by the Israelites led by Moses, Yahweh began to be raised as the absolute God of the Israelites, and the god of the old stories, Ēl Šaddai, was subsequently named Yahweh. Compared to the former gods, however, Yahweh was more distant and warlike. Yahweh demanded a covenant from the Israelites as a sign that they would respect only him and not other gods, whose existence was admittedly still henotheistically recognized. However, the people continued to worship their old gods alongside Yahweh for a long time, especially during times of peace. King Solomon built a temple for Yahweh in Jerusalem in the 9th century BC, but still in the 8th century BC. the pagan religions were so strong that the cult of Yahweh was in danger of being swallowed up by them. Yahweh's prophets, like Hosea, opposed the pagan gods of the Israelites and tried to abolish their worship. According to Armstrong, with the growth of the masculine power of Yahweh and the weakening of the female god Asherah, the position of women, who were equal to men before, weakened in Israel. In the 6th century BC. the harsh laws of the published fifth book of Moses further strengthened Yahweh's position. King Josiah cleared the Asherah statues and cult objects from the Jerusalem temple, destroyed pagan places of worship and rewrote historical books to support the destruction of the Canaanites and their pagan religion. After the Jews were forced into exile in Babylon in the 5th century BC. they lost their old places of worship and liturgy and could no longer rely on Yahweh himself. Around this time, the prophet Deutero-Isaiah declared Yahweh to be the only God. The Pentateuch was expanded with new laws, and Yahweh was written as the creator of everything in the new creation story. Yahweh also no longer spoke to people through prophets as before. This is how Judaism can be considered to have been born in its current form. Common god? Even though the name Yahweh is used in different religions, the Followers of the religions do not necessarily think that the concept of God is consistent due to the deviation of the dogmatics of the doctrine of God. Christians' understanding of God Yahweh differs considerably from that of Jews and Muslims because of the doctrine of the Trinity. Jewish and Muslim scribes do not always fully accept the classification of Christianity as a monotheistic religion. However, the majority of contemporary theologians consider the God of the Semitic religions to have a common basis. Religions are also united by prophets, through whom God