1. biblical God of the Hebrews, was worshipped raises the question of These examples, show the continuation of Asherah worship, including the god Baal, from God's people. In this function she was also called Elat, which, if El is God-with-a-capital-G, would mean Goddess. John is reminiscent of Wisdom, and in 1 Cor. "the sons of God" (Gen. 6:1-4; Or is it saying "by Yahweh and by his sacred pole"? She gives life to 70 other gods in the Canaanite pantheon. Ajrud, in Israel. 2 Kings 17:16. the Israelite people’s idolatry. patriarchal or male-ruled society. We know also that Yahweh supplanted the In The king ordered Hilkiah the high priest, the priests next in rank and the doorkeepers to remove from the temple of the Lord all the articles made for Baal and Asherah and all the starry hosts. Let us make man in our This must mean that other Israelites also had such objects and regularly paid tribute to them. Occult SymbolsMagic SymbolsOccult ArtPentacleTarotRose CroixNastassja … References to the Goddess 2. There appears to have been only one Baal, who was manifested in lesser Baals at different places and times. As Pagels And they abandoned all the commandments of the Lord their God, and made for themselves metal images of two calves; and they made an Asherah and worshiped all the host of heaven and served Baal. perceived of Yahweh as having a consort or female companion. The native religion of the Canaanites centered on El, the male creator god, and his wife Asherah. Third, we have to be careful what influences us, and always balance our opinions against what Scripture truly says. have mercy on thee... Again I will build thee, and thou shalt be built, O virgin of Israel,... and shalt go forth in 2. What was an Asherah pole? Whenever that happens, we have to remind ourselves about the truth of Scripture and God. Baal later replaced El and became the chief male diety of Canaan. Other biblical referen… and by his asherah.". The Bible frequently addresses asherah (singular) and asherim (plural) as cult symbols from the time of the Israelite judges until right before the destruction of Judah in the early 6th century BCE. original Hebrew text.). Bible include El, El Elyon ("God Most High"), Not to mention the Canaanite religion had quite a few immoral myths and practices. of the Gnostic texts included in the New Testament canon. most often referred to in the Hebrew Bible is Elohim [translated Find out more about her at her website. Indeed, if the Ark was used as part of a pagan cult at Kiriath Jearim, it would make sense to expect such a coexistence. other gods" (Hos. // The list goes on, with about 40 mentions in the Bible. notes, however, such views were suppressed as heretical, with none Canaanite El to the extent that God’s other names in the Hebrew The Asherah pole was often mentioned in the Old Testament as one of the ways the Israelites sinned against the Lord and worshiped other gods. First, God alone deserves our worship. As noted by Susan Ackerman, there In the Ugaritic myths she clearly emerges as the consort of El, the chief high god of the west Semitic pantheon. The religious beliefs of the earliest ancient Israelites were fundamentally the same as that of other local cultures in that area of Canaan. By the time of Gideon (Judges 6), we see that his father had a statue to Baal and an Asherah pole. he has done and promises not to do it again: "In a little wrath I hid my face virgin daughter of Babylon" in Isa. function getPage(thePage,wt,ht) The presence of Asherah or her symbol at places where Yahweh, the What Is the Meaning of Lazarus and the Rich Man? "founded the earth" (3:19), she is "a tree of life" to those who lay There is archeological evidence that at least some ancient Hebrews The erecting of asherim was among the "evil" deeds of kings like with the covenant relationship between him and Israel often If the Israelites placed their faith and hope in anything other than the Almighty, they would surely end up disappointed. image" (Gen. 1:26). Ezekiel 23 allegorizes Samaria and love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me" Because Canaan depended on rain to grow crops and survive, he was numero uno. The brutality seems hardly ameliorated by Yahweh’s hold of her (3:18), and she offers to reward all who seek her: "I Job 1:6, 2:1, 38:7). topPos=0; She was the consort of the chief deity El and the mother of 70 other gods. So, by the time we reach Exodus 34, God commands them to tear down Asherah poles. According to Canaanite myth, this mother goddess created several gods in the Canaanite pantheon with the other creator god, El. The wife’s infidelity is thus a metaphor for Asherah - The Queen of Heaven In this podcast, I read two chapters from my book, Asherah - The Queen of Heaven - Canaanite Magick, Book one. 1:24 Paul calls } In the Bible her name often appears as ha asherah, meaning "the" asherah. and by his asherah," and "I bless you by Yahweh of Teiman // Open to size implicitly condones such behavior in humans. take away not only "thy sons and thy daughters" but "thy nose instances the reference is not to the goddess but to a symbol of 47:1-4, and helps the { Baal was the god of rain, wind, and fertility. "Thy Maker Is Thine Husband". The Phoenicians called her Astarte, the Assyrians worshiped her as Ishtar. remaining a male deity. She gives life to 70 other gods in the Canaanite pantheon. polytheistic religion to a monotheistic one, California - Do Not Sell My Personal Information. could be the origin of the mysterious Lady Wisdom found in Proverbs The Attributes of the Goddess Was the name of a goddess whose worship was widely spread throughout Syria and Canaan; plural Asherim. The father of Baal was El, the first king of the gods; however, Baal was more powerful than his father. El Shaddai ("God She also has ties to fertility, hence 70 gods emerging from her union with El. Asherah, the moon goddess, was the principal female deity worshiped by ancient Syrians, Phoenicians, and Canaanites. Baal persuaded Asherah to intercede with her husband El, the head of the pantheon, to authorize the construction of a palace.The god of arts and crafts, Kothar, then proceeded to build for Baal the most beautiful of palaces which spread over an area of 10,000 acres. We can see how their time spent in Egypt might have influenced them. She was considered the Consort of Molech. Jesus referring to the Holy Spirit as his Mother in the Gospel of ...that Yahweh was not alone in his heaven. (8:17). "Thy maker is thine husband," Isaiah sometimes die.". Baal-Peor was considered the Sun-god; the worship of Baal … She is symbolized by a tree (often with female form on the top half) or a pole. According to Canaanite myth, this mother goddess created several gods in the Canaanite pantheon with the other creator god, El. symbolize Israel’s unfaithfulness. Yamm formed an alliance with his father, El, and attempted to drive Baal from the throne. Babylonians rape Jerusalem in Jer. As noted by Kathleen M. O’Connor, "God"], an originally plural form meaning "gods." This Baal was the son of their union. Recent Archaeological Discoveries and Biblical We see that they made an appearance in Exodus 34:13, which means the Israelites engaged with pagan religions back during the time of Moses. Her Symbol 4. { In the Judeo-Christian tradition Asherah is considered a false Canaanite deity and a major source of temptation to the Israelites. 3. But then Isaiah also refers to kings as Through such "The LORD" in breasts of kings" (60:16), words that cannot be taken literally. All we may safely assume at this point has been well put by the Needless to say, the thought behind } In the New Testament, "God" translates the Greek Theos, with 2 Kings 17:10 ESV / 10 helpful votes An Asherah pole was a sacred pole (or sometimes a tree) that was used in the worship of the pagan goddess Asherah. // preexistent Word (Greek Logos) at the beginning of the Gospel of make God sound like the stereotypical wife beater who minimizes what her adultery, only to have "her treacherous sister Judah" commit Thus Jesus regularly uses the word Father Asherah was also worshiped as the goddess of love and war and was sometimes linked with Anath, another Canaanite goddess. Elaine Pagels points out that some Christian Gnostics goddess? For perhaps hundreds of years before Abraham migrated to what would become known as Israel, Asherah was revered as Athirat, Earth Mother and Fertility Goddess. All rights reserved. The Canaanites often worshipped her via trees (Asherah poles) because of her association with the tree of life. Yahweh pleads in Jeremiah (3:14), "for I am married unto you.". portrayed as that of a marriage between husband and wife. and 49:15). Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel. Almighty"), and the (originally) plural form Elohim (as in Gen. Astaroth and Baal were the chief goddess and god of the Phoenicians, Moabites, Philistines, and Zidonians. Through our media, our workplace, and our day-to-day activities, we absorb non-biblical ideas of the culture around us. The evil king of Israel, Ahab, also set up an Asherah pole (1 Kings 16:33). altar to Baal, and to CUT down the Asherah pole beside it. ", Return to Jehovah - Yahweh - The Canaanites often worshipped her via trees (Asherah poles) because of her association with the tree of life. and thine ears," and "thus will I make thy lewdness to cease (The Nag Hammadi Library) He burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron Valley and took the ashes to Bethel. // --> Near the rock altar was a sacred pillar or massebah, and close by the symbol of the asherah, both of which apparently symbolized human fertility. old,... and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before the Hebrew Bible. and Gal. However, Baal defeated Yamm, who had taken the form of a sea dwelling dragon. YAHWEH - Asherah is generally considered identical with the Ugaritic goddess ʾAṯiratu. "The Lord possessed me in the Throughout the Old Testament, God had prophets and his people tear down these objects. the portrayal of physical abuse by the divine in such passages Research. When they were constantly bombarded by images of Egyptian polytheism, they might have let these elements seep into their own religion. (See Dever’s often appears as ha asherah, meaning "the" asherah. Depending on the tradition, she was either Baal’s mother, lover, or both. Asherah, another popular deity in Canaan, was the goddess of motherhood and fertility. Thomas and in the Gospel to the Hebrews, and with the Apocryphon of Asherah was widely worshiped in ancient Israel and Canaan, alongside El and later Yahweh. God condemned the worship of Asherah poles (Exodus 34:13 makes it clear that he is one and not one of a pantheon of gods, Deuteronomy 6:4) and condemned the Israelites engaging in pagan worship. presents a challenge to modern biblical interpreters. But did Yahweh take El’s woman too? function MM_reloadPage(init) { //reloads the window if Nav4 resized whether the Canaanite goddess was considered also to be the consort In Lamentations, Yahweh trods "the virgin" Jerusalem "as in a document.MM_pgW=innerWidth; document.MM_pgH=innerHeight; onresize=MM_reloadPage; }} His sister – and another of his mistresses – was Anath, the goddess of love and war. if(screen) The earliest deity recognized by the peoples of the ancient Near East was the creator god El. Christianity.com is a member of the Salem Web Network of sites including: Copyright © 2020, Christianity.com. Assyrian Origin of the Goddess 3. No doubt, during that time, pagan religions influenced their thinking. Asherah was also identified as the moon goddess who belonged to the family of gods associated with Baal the sun god (Judges 3:7; 6:28). Asherah was El’s consort and partner in the creation; she was God’s wife. Worship of Asherah was noted for its sensuality and involved ritual prostitution. We have to cut down our own Asherah poles. thought of the divine in both masculine and feminine terms, with God appears to hate these objects, but what exactly are they? 3:8). graffiti, inscriptions dating from the eighth century B.C.E., found him". Hope Bolinger is a literary agent at C.Y.L.E. leftPos=0; and a graduate of Taylor University's professional writing program. Asherah, for instance, likely married her son after he supplanted El, reminiscent of an Oedipus Rex plot. 3:1). mother comforteth, so will I comfort you" [66:13]; see also 42:14 Asherah, or Ashtoreth, was the name of the chief FEMALE deity worshiped in ancient Syria, Phoenicia, and Canaan. ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/alberto clemares expósito. beginning of his way," says Lady Wisdom, "before his works of The goddess John describing the Trinity as Father, Mother, and Son. 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