The Sinai Covenant and Flora and Fauna

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The Sinai Covenant and Flora and Fauna

  1. Did the calf represent Yahweh, or did it represent other gods?

When Moses had taken too long to return, the people grew impatient and asked Aaron to fashion them a god that they could worship, which he did by smelting gold jewelry collected from the people making a calf to represent other gods and not Yahweh.

  1. What is the Levant?

The Levant is a historic geographic term that was used to refer to the massive expanse of land that lie on the eastern side of the Mediterranean Sea.

  1. Why is it so hard to create a map of ancient Israel?

Israelites were a migratory people and spent most of their life in slavery and exile thus not having a clearly defined territory.

  1. What affected the location of ancient cities?

Good fertile soil and adequate supply of water to support the main economic activity of the time, agriculture, in an otherwise dry and barren land. This led to many cities being located along rivers and large water bodies and also facilitated transportation.

  1. What is the central time frame of Israel’s history, and why?

13th -12th C when the Israelites settled in the land of Israel after four centuries in slavery in Egypt.

  1. Why is the Exile important for the way the Israelites told their story?

The exile is an indication of God’s faithfulness and steadfastness to the Israelites as he ejected them from their land when they disobeyed his commands but saved them from their oppressors when they repented and turned back to Him and also serves as a warning for future generations.

  1. Why did Israelite scribes rewrite and rework earlier material?

Greek philosophy insights led some Jewish scribes to different interpretations original scriptures in the hopes that it would make them easily understandable hence the rewriting of original material.

  1. What are some differences between Jewish, Catholic, and Protestant Old Testaments? Why are the versions different?

The Jewish Old Testament excludes 15 later books while the Protestant Old testament kept all the books but separated them into two, the Old Testament and the apocrypha. The Catholic bible contains all the books as were in the Septuagint version. The Greek translation of the scriptures, the Septuagint, was widely used since Greek was more popular than Hebrew. Jewish rabbi revisions later excluded some books not found in original Hebrew texts leading to the present different versions.

  1. What do Catholics mean by “inerrant”? How does it differ from a fundamentalist Christian definition?

Inerrant refers to the bible being devoid of errors contrary to fundamentalist Christians who leave some leeway for exaggeration, myth and religious propaganda.

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