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"sophia" In Genesis 1:26


Aquilifer

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I'm thumbing through From Jesus to Christianity, by L. Michael White of the University of Texas. He has a section on the state of Judaism at the time of Christ's birth, including a subsection on "wisdom" literature, an idea that is new to me. Wisdom (Sophia) is personified in female form as a fusion of Greek and Hebrew thought, and She acts as an intermediary of sorts, bestowing divine guidance upon mortals throughout the Old Testament.

To cut to the chase, White states that Genesis 1:26's "Let us make man in our own image" is referring to this concept of Sophia acting together with God.

This is an interpretation of Genesis that I had not heard before, and since I'd like some input on this interpretation from those who are better versed in Hebrew and Greek than I am (which is to say, anyone who's cracked open a Hebrew textbook).

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I'm thumbing through From Jesus to Christianity, by L. Michael White of the University of Texas. He has a section on the state of Judaism at the time of Christ's birth, including a subsection on "wisdom" literature, an idea that is new to me. Wisdom (Sophia) is personified in female form as a fusion of Greek and Hebrew thought, and She acts as an intermediary of sorts, bestowing divine guidance upon mortals throughout the Old Testament.

To cut to the chase, White states that Genesis 1:26's "Let us make man in our own image" is referring to this concept of Sophia acting together with God.

This is an interpretation of Genesis that I had not heard before, and since I'd like some input on this interpretation from those who are better versed in Hebrew and Greek than I am (which is to say, anyone who's cracked open a Hebrew textbook).

If you read through the Pslams, you'll find examples where Wisdom is said to have been with God

from the foundation of the world. This interested some early Christian writers enough for them to

try and equate Sophia with the Logos.

However, a close reading of the biblical texts shows that "Wisdom" is a personification and not a person.

UD

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I'm thumbing through From Jesus to Christianity, by L. Michael White of the University of Texas. He has a section on the state of Judaism at the time of Christ's birth, including a subsection on "wisdom" literature, an idea that is new to me. Wisdom (Sophia) is personified in female form as a fusion of Greek and Hebrew thought, and She acts as an intermediary of sorts, bestowing divine guidance upon mortals throughout the Old Testament.

To cut to the chase, White states that Genesis 1:26's "Let us make man in our own image" is referring to this concept of Sophia acting together with God.

This is an interpretation of Genesis that I had not heard before, and since I'd like some input on this interpretation from those who are better versed in Hebrew and Greek than I am (which is to say, anyone who's cracked open a Hebrew textbook).

And i have some really great stuff on wisdom i just cannot find it right now? It is biblical and speaks of how wisdom is pretty much all things, and reffers to wisdom as "her". {I will keep looking}. :P

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I'm thumbing through From Jesus to Christianity, by L. Michael White of the University of Texas. He has a section on the state of Judaism at the time of Christ's birth, including a subsection on "wisdom" literature, an idea that is new to me. Wisdom (Sophia) is personified in female form as a fusion of Greek and Hebrew thought, and She acts as an intermediary of sorts, bestowing divine guidance upon mortals throughout the Old Testament.

To cut to the chase, White states that Genesis 1:26's "Let us make man in our own image" is referring to this concept of Sophia acting together with God.

This is an interpretation of Genesis that I had not heard before, and since I'd like some input on this interpretation from those who are better versed in Hebrew and Greek than I am (which is to say, anyone who's cracked open a Hebrew textbook).

I wrote something on this awhile back which you can view here...

http://www.mormonapologetics.org/blog/enem...hp?showentry=30

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So Mother in Heaven?

Not quite a mother in heaven, though some may see it that way. In fact, if we follow the chronology it would appear thus: Earth Mother Goddess --> Fertility deities --> Asherah, et al --> Sophia --> Wisdom --> LOGOS --> Jesus. So what some see as a mother in heaven might have to accept the concept of a "big brother" in heaven.

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I'm thumbing through From Jesus to Christianity, by L. Michael White of the University of Texas. He has a section on the state of Judaism at the time of Christ's birth, including a subsection on "wisdom" literature, an idea that is new to me. Wisdom (Sophia) is personified in female form as a fusion of Greek and Hebrew thought, and She acts as an intermediary of sorts, bestowing divine guidance upon mortals throughout the Old Testament.

To cut to the chase, White states that Genesis 1:26's "Let us make man in our own image" is referring to this concept of Sophia acting together with God.

This is an interpretation of Genesis that I had not heard before, and since I'd like some input on this interpretation from those who are better versed in Hebrew and Greek than I am (which is to say, anyone who's cracked open a Hebrew textbook).

Margaret Barker talks alot about Wisdom in "The Great Angel". Also, I decided to read the source material myself and checked out the Oxford bible and read the Wisdom literature found in the psalms and in certain portions of the Apocrypha. I concur with Ron's evolution of Wisdom into Jesus, though I am far from being an expert on the subject.

The New Testament has a few peculiar passages suggesting that Wisdom (Sophia) had not altogether disappeared in Jewish thought by that time, passages which even suggest that Wisdom is some sort of parent or progenitor of Jesus.

Sargon

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Earth Mother Goddess

...

There is an alternative path here, and that is the evolution of the Egyptian goddess Hat-hor in

southern Palestine and Canaan. Hat-hor was a Sky-goddess, as well as a deity whose realm extended

outside of the Nile Valley -- mother of the young bull calf -- mother of the sun -- mother of the

guide through the wilderness -- mother of the starry heavens.

timnah.jpg

A developmental connection between Hat-hor and Sophia would be interesting to discover.

http://sidneyrigdon.com/DRB/BEGIN/timna2.htm

UD

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To cut to the chase, White states that Genesis 1:26's "Let us make man in our own image" is referring to this concept of Sophia acting together with God.
This is an interpretation of Genesis that I had not heard before, and since I'd like some input on this interpretation from those who are better versed in Hebrew and Greek than I am (which is to say, anyone who's cracked open a Hebrew textbook).

I'm not making any Greek or Hebrew claims, but I notice that in Genesis 5:1-3, the image of God is Adam and Eve, a married couple, which matches nicely with the concept of Sophia acting together with God in Genesis 1:26.

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My thanks to everyone who's commented, and for the starting points provided. I'm starting to dip my toes in the muddy waters of ancient scripture scholarship, and am trying to get a basic overview. My surprise at the Hellenistic influence on Jewish scripture probably indicates just how much of a journey I have ahead of me still. :P

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There is an alternative path here, and that is the evolution of the Egyptian goddess Hat-hor in

southern Palestine and Canaan. Hat-hor was a Sky-goddess, as well as a deity whose realm extended

outside of the Nile Valley -- mother of the young bull calf -- mother of the sun -- mother of the

guide through the wilderness -- mother of the starry heavens.

A developmental connection between Hat-hor and Sophia would be interesting to discover.

http://sidneyrigdon.com/DRB/BEGIN/timna2.htm

UD

Great notice, but perhaps the diffusion was the other way around from Sumer to Egypt. There are many examples of the "Hathor head" or hairstyle which has found its way from Sumer to Egypt.

astarte.gif

Notice the hairstyle as well as the fact that she is on top of a lion which predates a Neolithic worldview.

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Great notice, but perhaps the diffusion was the other way around from Sumer to Egypt. There are many examples of the "Hathor head" or hairstyle which has found its way from Sumer to Egypt.

astarte.gif

Notice the hairstyle as well as the fact that she is on top of a lion which predates a Neolithic worldview.

The fact that the goddess is depicted full-faced is an oddity in Egyptian religion -- and may reflect a very

early importation from abroad.

But, just as likely, the goddess was a very ancient Egyptian one, arising from cattle-herding people who

for ages placed a cow skull on display (full-faced) in their "sacred enclosures."

The Hat-hor parallel deity in Mesopotamia may have developed independently, with some sort of a

forgotten convergence in very ancient times. It seems likely that people from the Euphrates valley

made it into Egypt in pre-dynastic times.

At any rate the goddess is a sky goddess, and thus more likely as "Mother of Heaven" than an earth

goddess. Hat-hor is directly associated with YHWH at Timna, where a "Midianite" tabernacle was built

atop a Hat-hor temple, after the 19th dynasty Egyptian occupiers withdrew from the region.

I am only guessing, but there may have been a period in antiquity in which Hat-hor's Palestinian

equivalent was the consort of El and mother of YHWH and Baal Hadad -- (well before David's era).

UD

.

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I am only guessing, but there may have been a period in antiquity in which Hat-hor's Palestinian

equivalent was the consort of El and mother of YHWH and Baal Hadad -- (well before David's era).

UD

All very correct. The creator goddess of Sumer was known by a variety of names, but Ninlil was among those goddesses that were attributed with special creation powers.

Astarte Article from Britannica.com:

also spelled ASHTART, great goddess of the ancient Middle East and chief deity of Tyre, Sidon, and Elath, important Mediterranean seaports. Hebrew scholars now feel that the goddess Ashtoreth mentioned so often in the Bible is a deliberate conflation of the Greek name Astarte and the Hebrew word boshet, "shame," indicating the Hebrew contempt for her cult. Ashtaroth, the plural form of the goddess's name in Hebrew, became a general term denoting goddesses and paganism.

King Solomon, married to foreign wives, "went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians" (I Kings 11:5). Later the cult places to Ashtoreth were destroyed by Josiah. Astarte/Ashtoreth is the Queen of Heaven to whom the Canaanites had burned incense and poured libations (Jeremiah 44).

Astarte, goddess of war and sexual love, shared so many qualities with her sister, Anath, that they may originally have been seen as a single deity. Their names together are the basis for the Aramaic goddess Atargatis.

Astarte was worshiped in Egypt and Ugarit and among the Hittites, as well as in Canaan. Her Akkadian counterpart was Ishtar. Later she became assimilated with the Egyptian deities Isis and Hathor (a goddess of the sky and of women), and in the Greco-Roman world with Aphrodite, Artemis, and Juno, all aspects of the Great Mother.

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...Later she became assimilated with the Egyptian deities Isis and Hathor (a goddess of the sky

and of women)...

golden4.jpg

http://sidneyrigdon.com/DRB/BEGIN/golden.htm

UD

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