- Pathfinder

Reply To: Analyze one of the supplementary Bible passages in light of the course content. Do you see evidence of the Hebraic map? Did anything about the passage surprise you? Was there any part of the passage that stuck out to you in particular?

Erik Nilsen

Jesus’s response to the sons of Zebedee in Matthew 20:25-28 is perhaps the most explicit acknowledgement of the Hebraic worldview contrasted with that of the Hellenists and the barbarians:
“But Jesus called them over and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles dominate them, and the men of high position exercise power over them. It must not be like that among you.” (v.25-26a)

Likewise, in his First Treatise of Government, John Locke points out that, in Genesis 1:28, God granted Adam dominion over the beasts, the birds, and the bugs, but not over other human beings. In the remainder of his First Treatise, Locke develops this argument to disprove the notion that the Bible supports the divine right of kings. On the contrary, Deuteronomy 18:14-20 imposes strict limits on the power of Israelite kings, and sternly warns them against military expansionism.

That being said, I do not think Professor Nicholson is correct to describe a Hebraic worldview, when applied to the ancient Kingdom of Israel, as “pluralistic” or “live and let live” with regard to its neighbors. On multiple occasions throughout the Old Testament, God explicitly commands the Israelites to exterminate the Canaanites and to “blot out the name of Amalek under heaven” for the wickedness of those groups. Even with the clear distinction between pluralism and moral relativism, pluralism as described in this course is a post-Enlightenment ideology rather than a strictly biblical one.