Study of Yehezkel Kaufmann’s The Religion of Israel: from its beginnings to the Babylonian exile – Kaufmann’s eight-volume work has been abridged and translated into English. His analysis of the difference between Israel’s monotheism and the pagan world, his critical assessment of the major shift during the classical prophetic period, and his approach to biblical history are considered fundamental by many Hebrew scholars. This study demonstrates that our appreciation for the biblical text must include a review of Kaufmann’s material. Furthermore, Kaufmann helps us recognize just how much Christianity differs from Israelite religion, not only in practice but also in theory. Some of Kaufmann’s analysis is technical. We will not dwell on these sections. Instead, we will spend our time considering Kaufmann’s insights into Israel’s early development, the role of the prophets, and the influence of Babylon.
If you want to know where the ideas in the Bible came from and how they grew, then Kaufmann must be on your reading list.
This study includes the full 20 video sessions, that were recorded live via Zoom, of careful examination of Kaufmann’s understanding of the history of Israel’s religion. All sessions also include “Audio Only” for those that prefer listening instead of watching. All of the weekly participants’ discussions and questions are included. Thanks for all that!
In addition to the free download of the book, I have prepared about 400 citations from the text. When you sign up for the course, these will be available. These citations are what we will discuss as we move through the text.