Search this journal:     Advanced search
Original Research

Beyond monotheism? Some remarks and questions on conceptualising ‘monotheism’ in Biblical Studies

Christian Frevel

Verbum et Ecclesia; Vol 34, No 2 (2013), 7 pages. doi: 10.4102/ve.v34i2.810

Submitted: 29 October 2012
Published:  20 September 2013

Abstract

In the first part of this article I outline serious objections against the concept of monotheism. I will ask whether the ambiguity and the problem discredit the concept of monotheism as inappropriate for Biblical Studies, or whether it calls for differentiation. In the argument following thereupon, the concept is found to be more useful to describe certain stages of the conceptual and linguistic development of Israelite religion. The term and concept of monotheism in Biblical Studies is necessary, but not sufficient, if we want to reconstruct the religious history of Israel, Judah, Yehûd and Early Judaism or Judaisms. In this article I propose categories such as implicit monotheism, intolerant monolatry, implicit exclusion, explicit uniqueness, monotheism as implication et cetera, which are especially useful if we want an accurate description of the statements. This makes the category of monotheism useful as heuristic and relational category.

Full Text:  |  HTML  |  EPUB  |  XML  |  PDF (441KB)

Author affiliations

Christian Frevel, Faculty of Catholic Theology, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany; Department of Old Testament Studies, University of Pretoria, South Africa

Metrics

Total abstract views: 1711
Total article views: 4293

Cited-By

No related citations found

Comments on this article

Before posting your comment, please read our policy.
Post a Comment (Login required)


ISSN: 1609-9982 (print) | ISSN: 2074-7705 (online)

Connect on: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn and YouTube

Subscribe to our newsletter

All articles published in this journal are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license.

©2016 AOSIS (Pty) Ltd. All rights reserved. No unauthorised duplication allowed.

AOSIS Publishing | Empowering Africa through access to knowledge
Postnet Suite #110, Private Bag X19, Durbanville, South Africa, 7551
Tel: 086 1000 381 
Tel: +27 21 975 2602 
Fax: 086 5004 974

publishing(AT)aosis.co.za replace (AT) with @

Please read the privacy statement.