Asherah, the Israelite Goddess

This is a follow-up post to the BBC Documentary When God Was A Girl, which showed many ancient cultures believed in goddesses and thought of the divine as female. It was no different with the Israelite religion.

William Dever's book Did God Have a Wife?: Archaeology and Folk Religion in Ancient Israel,shows that the OT god Yahweh had a wife. Her name? Asherah. Oxford biblical scholar Francesca Stavrakopoulou argues for this as well, in a series of History Channel documentaries.

We know Yahweh was a mythological deity just like the many other deities that were believed to exist in the ancient world. And they too had wives (or, goddesses) and were part of their own pantheon of gods. We know this! Come on now, after all, we read in the Bible that Yahweh had sons. If he had sons then he had a wife. She was just edited out of the OT, but we know she existed in the minds of the Hebrews.

Professor Jaco Gericke, in a chapter for my anthology, The End of Christianity,asks the important question, "Can God Exist if Yahweh Doesn't?" The answer seems obvious to me, no.

What Christians believe is totally out of whack from what we read in the Bible. What they're left with is a God of their own making. They are basically making it up as they go, changing what they believe in each decade, century and millennium. They do this to maintain faith, since the most important thing to them is faith itself. It provides hope and comfort. Faith does this. But it's faith not the object of their faith that provides this hope and comfort. Yahweh doesn't exist. He never did. Christians are playing a pretend game and most of them don't know this because their scholars are more deluded than they are. They are the ultimate existentialists who create meaning and purpose for their lives without any objective foundation for what they believe.


While I'm at it, here's something I'll add for free:

Yahweh was sired by the god El (short for Elyon) and later superseded him in the evolutionary development of the Israelite religion. Just think of the names we find in the OT, like Ab-el, Emmanu-el, Ishma-el, Samu-el, El-isha, El-ijah, Jo-el, Zerubbab-el (who was supposed to be the long awaited Messiah). They were named after a different god than Yahweh, El. The tribe of Isra-el was named after him, along the angels Micha-el and Gabri-el.

We even find him naming himself as:

El Shaddai:“El Almighty.” (Gen. 17:1; 28:3; 35:11; Ex. 6:1; Ps. 91:1, 2).
El Elyon: “El the Most High.” (Gen. 14:19; Ps. 9:2; Dan. 7:18, 22, 25).
El Olam: “The Everlasting El.” (Gen. 16:13).

A few biblical cities are named after El, most noticeably Beth-el (literally "House of El"). Bethel became an important cult-center of worship for the northern Kingdom of Israel following the break-up of the united kingdom of David and Solomon. This was a key turning point for the Israelite religion.

The reason we find both names for the God of the OT is because these two religions were later combined into one, sharing both their stories in an ecumenicalism the liberals of today would be proud of. Most noticeably there are at least two Flood stories in Genesis 6-9 that if taken apart, based on the two names for God used in it, we would have two complete but separate stories. You can see this quite plainly on pages 54-59 on Richard Elliot Friedman's book, Who Wrote the Bible?

Now for the kicker: The New Testament God is the same one as the OT God(s). They rise and fall together. If Marcionite Christianity had prevailed then Christianity would have had a better chance at surviving into the future. In fact, I'll bet you that in the future that's what Christianity will become. Christians will embrace Marcion who rejected the Hebrew Bible and the God of Israel. I see signs that's exactly what they are now beginning to do. They will do and say almost anything to maintain their faith, because having faith is much more important than being intellectually honest based on sound reasoning and sufficient objective evidence. Hell, they will even attack the need for sufficient objective evidence it's so bad!