Bible Review 19:3, June 2003

Bible Books: Three Gods in One

This is not the book I was expecting. From the title The Hebrew God, I envisioned something akin to Mark Smith’s Early History of God, Ziony Zevit’s The Religions of Ancient Israel or Richard Friedman’s The Hidden Face of God. And from the subtitle Portrait of an Ancient Deity, I anticipated discussions of artifacts like the ancient sketch of Yahweh found on a clay pot at Kuntillet ‘Ajrud, in northern Sinai. I was wrong. A better name for this book would be God of Wisdom, War and Life: Dumézil’s Tripartite Functional Analysis and the Religion of the Hebrew Bible. But for this we can certainly forgive author Bernhard Lang and Yale University Press, as their title will no doubt sell more books.

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