Book Summary The Bible Among the Myths Essay

Words: 2837
Pages: 12

The book opens with an introduction comparing the study of the Old Testament and the other religions and cultures of other peoples from the Ancient Near East. Scholars used to believe that the Old Testament was unique among other beliefs in the Ancient Near East but they now view the Old Testament as identical to other religions of its day and time.
The author also discusses the vital philosophical distinction between “essence” and “accident.” When removing an essential feature of an object, it will cease to be itself but if you remove an accidental feature of an object, there will be no change in the object’s essential being.
The author also introduces the characteristics of myth.
1) That human beings have
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There are various and numerous effects of the continuity worldview. One is the emphasis of looking for signs in nature. There have been attempts at explaining reality from plagues, floods, fire, weather patterns and the celestial bodies. Another is the use of magic to influence and affect the cosmos. The last of the long list of effects of continuity includes people’s fixation on fertility.
To end the chapter we have a list of five of what is believed to be the common features of myths:
1) Polytheism
2) Images
3) Eternity of Chaotic Matter
4) Personality Not Essential to Reality
5) Low View of the Gods.
Except for exemptions, myths all share the same belief that there exist a multitude of gods. They also believe in the heavy use of icons and symbols to interact with the divine and nature. The gods themselves are seen as fallible beings and viewed lowly. The creation accounts involve some kind of major conflict in order to bring about the universe. The last common feature of myth is the low value placed on humanity, which stems from the belief that no single standard of principles exist.

Dealing with the topic of Transcendence: Basis of Biblical Thinking was transcendence refers to the aspect of God’s nature and power which is wholly independent of the material universe, beyond all physical Laws.
Some common characteristics are:
1) Monotheism where the belief is that there is