Falling Back on a Convenient Worldview
The polytheistic environment of ancient Israel offered a convenient response to evil’s persistence. Psalm 82 endorses this view of a pantheon of gods and points to its fundamental weakness, the inability of the gods to assure justice on earth. The indictment of these derelict deities by a single heavenly being, Elohim, marks the first truly revolutionary moment in biblical thought: the death of the gods and ensuing monotheism. Still, this revolution is not without a certain irony, for the remaining Elohim must be implored to establish justice.
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