[b-hebrew] Re: Samaritan-Hebrew Schism

Yitzhak Sapir yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Sat Mar 19 15:47:40 EST 2005

Thank you, Drs. West and Thompson for the references.

Some points: in my recent discussion, I did not refer to Asherah as a minor
diety.  I referred to Asherah as a word - Asherah.  Something that was
looked upon badly in late First Temple Judea, but was probably accepted
earlier, in my view.  It could be a cult object or it could be a minor
diety.  Just
because there are references to Asherah and Baal doesn't mean that Israelites
worshipped these as the Canaanites did.

The discussion here of a schism that my post generated is misplaced.  
In dating a split, what I meant is that from a historical viewpoint, we 
can speak of two peoples that occupied these respective territories from
the Bronze Age.  Starting from 1000 BCE we see various indications that
they may have been united in various forms: the United Monarchy, the
peace between Jehoshaphat and Ahab, the rule of Josiah over parts of
Israel after the fall of the Assyrian empire, and in the early Second Temple,
the mutual acceptance of the Pentateuch in largely the form we have it
today.  One can view these events as parallel developments and they can
be viewed as the development of two parts of the same community.  The
question of the split is more over the time when mutual cooperation ceased
never to recur again and each of the respective communities did not view 
the other as part of the "real" or "original" Israel anymore.  This is what I 
view as the issue of the "split", and a major military action can certainly be 
the background for such a "split."  In any case, a late Second Temple
Period seems necessary at least, as in the Early Second Temple, the
mutual agreement on the Pentateuch was probably formed.

Yitzhak Sapir

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