Religious claims about biblical law
DOI link for Religious claims about biblical law
Religious claims about biblical law book
I will look at two biblical rules that critics commonly claim reveal a religious dimension in biblical law. In particular, they attribute a mysterious, non-rational dimension to the rules and assert that this element is religious in character, and is so ancient that it goes back to pre-Israelite times. Leo Strauss articulates this view that, in effect, takes literally the metaphoric equation of antiquity with the divine: ‘The ancestors are superior, and therefore the ancestors must be understood, if this notion is fully thought through, as gods or sons of god, or pupils of god.’1 I will reject both the religious claim and the related claim that we are touching on matters of great antiquity in the sense that biblical rules come from the very distant past. I will also touch on some larger issues about law and religion, law and storytelling, and the comparative approach to biblical law.