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Cover of: Das Alte Testament auf dem Weg zu seiner Theologie
Christoph Levin

Das Alte Testament auf dem Weg zu seiner Theologie

Section: Articles
Volume 105 (2008) / Issue 2, pp. 125-145 (21)
Published 09.07.2018
DOI 10.1628/004435408784514436
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In recent exegesis, ancient Israel has lost its special position in the history of religion. This has had consequences for biblical hermeneutics. We must realize that the binding nature of the Old Testament does not depend on its incomparability, but on its significance as a religious paradigm. Literary history shows that the Old Testament is a continuing discussion about God which has been committed to writing. At the beginning, we find what was practically speaking the monolatry of the Israelite and Judean court cult, which was influenced decisively by the Ancient Near East. When there was an attempt to overcome the antithesis between Israel and Judah in the 7th century, this was achieved with the help of a programmatic mono-Yahwism. The loss of the monarchy and the destruction of the temple resulted in the demand for an exclusive monolatry. The conditions of life in exile and the diaspora were reflected in an integrative monotheism. In the end, the path to theology overstepped the bounds of the biblical canon. Each day and age is invited to pick up the threads of the discussion about God and to continue this.