Ancient Assyrians

Ancient Israelite Activists

It may be that ancient Israel was non-ecumenical, actively shaping themselves in contrast to their surroundings, but I suppose that side of their tradition didn’t come of age until early Judaism, when the exiled people were forced to survive without an intact nation in an alien world.

I see them, before then, almost as activists, setting up the rules of their federation in protest against the monarchies and hierarchies nearby (Oxford Study Bible, pages 35-36), visionaries dreaming of some unknown alternative. Yet they were deeply influenced by the givens, as well.