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"Henotheism, A God-Eat-God Cosmic System"

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Henotheism
A God-Eat-God Cosmic
System
Henotheism, not monotheism, is the theology of Moses and
the Prophets. This fact is generally accepted by scholars, as
any number of authorities can attest.
What is Henotheism? Nothing better defines Henotheism
than what Saint Paul the Apostle told the Corinthians:
There are many gods, but for us there is one God.[1]
Henotheism is the belief that many gods exist, but that only
one God should be worshipped. Unlike monotheism, there
are truly many gods and they really do exist. Yet unlike
polytheism, not all the gods are worshipped. Only one of
them is worshipped, and the rest are profane.
Henotheism explains why James the brother of Jesus and
Saint John the Apostle, together with all the Prophets, were
so thoroughly against idols and eating meat sacrificed to
idols, even to the point where it was one of the few
regulations of the Old Testament that they insisted nonJewish Christians must keep[2] because sacrifices to idols
serve profane entities that truly do exist.[3]
Henotheism explains why idolatry is the most frequently
mentioned offense in the entire Bible for if God is all
THIS SECTION: powerful, then an idol is nothing, and it would only be an
inconsequential joke and hardly worth the mention but if
GOD IS NOT
idolatry truly serves other gods that truly do exist, and if
ALL
POWERFUL -at sacrifices to idols truly assist those gods, then this explains
why Yahweh and his Prophets are so vociferously against
least not yet
idolatry. For if there are other gods, then these gods are
truly a threat to Yahweh and to his Messiah, and therefore it
is particularly important that idolatry does not infiltrate the
ranks of the faithful, for it truly gives enemies a foot in the
door by which they can infiltrate the armies of Yahweh. The
God of Henotheism is actually competing against other gods
who are real. Worshipping other gods is serving other gods,
and serving other gods undermines the power of your
covenant God, and this is tantamount to adultery against
your God and treason against your nation. In such terms the

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Above: The Primordial Bull-God El, the


Father of the gods in ancient pre-Jewish
Hebrew religion. He is "God the Father" in
Christianity.

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Prophets speaks of idolatry. This line of thinking only makes


sense in light of Henotheism.
If God were Almighty, then the overarching importance of
the prohibition against idols makes no sense at all, because in
a monotheistic system, and idol has no power.
Which is
worse, praying to rocks and dead trees, or committing
murder? In a monotheistic system, the first is laughable but
the second is quite heinous. But in a Henotheistic system,
idolatry is even more heinous than murder, for murder can
only kill the body, but idolatry kills both body and soul, for it
puts the soul at the mercy of gods who care not for
humanity. Only within the framework of Henotheistic
thinking does it make sense that idolatry is a worse crime
than murder, theft, sexual perversion, or any other
infraction. Seeing that the Bible condemns idolatry more
frequently than any other sin, this is a case for Henotheism.

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Ancient Christians believed the progenitor of


this universe was an imperfect god who
messed it all up. Their stories are
metaphorically similar to the scientific
understanding of the Big Bang.

The Uniqueness of Yahweh


Nevertheless, the God of Israel was still unique from the
other gods in some ways. Unlike other gods of the region,
Yahweh never had sex and he never died. Most other ancient
Near Eastern gods at least had sex, and some like Tammuz
died. We know from archaeology that Baal had sex with a
cow 77 times and he also died.[4]
From the very earliest of the Israelite settlements, there is
no archaeological evidence that an idol of Yahweh was made,
indicating a very early belief in the prohibition against idols.
[5]

Examples of Henotheistic Thinking in the Bible


The real existence of the pagan god Dagon is implied in
the Biblical story of how Dagon's idol fell on his face before
Yahweh. The Bible never says that wind blew him over or
that God blew him over. Rather, the Bible presents the story
as if Dagon was truly a living god who made a conscious
decision to humble himself before another god.[6]
In another archaic Biblical text, Naomi tells Ruth, "Your
sister-in-law went back to her nation and to her gods. You
should do the same."[7] Naomi was a Hebrew who believed
in Yahweh, but here she sanctioned the worship of other gods
besides Yahweh, but only for those outside the Hebrew
nation.
Then there is the case of how the Old Testament makes
references to other gods as if they were actual people, and
that they could be bound in chains and led into captivity.
The Prophet Jeremiah wrote about Chemosh, the god of the
Moabites,

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Chemosh shall go into captivity, with his priests and


princes together.[8]

It's as if the god Chemosh were physically capable of being


handcuffed.

Henotheism Explains Things Monotheism Cannot


Have you ever wondered why the prophecies in the Bible
are vague? If God were really all powerful, then God should
be able to pinpoint exact times, dates, locations, and names
when giving prophecies for thousands of years in the future.
But most of the prophecies in the Bible do not attempt such
precision. This is not consistent with monotheism. But on
the other hand, if there are gods who live for thousands of
years or more, and if they have substantial control over
future events, but not total control, then they can give vague
prophecies, which will remarkably and fairly consistently
come true. Such are the Prophets of the Bible.
Have you ever wondered why bad things happen to good
people? If God were all powerful and all good, this should
not happen. On the other hand, if there are gods who are
good, yet who cannot always control things, or who do not
have the resources to intervene, then the existence of evil
makes sense, for the gods can only do so much.

Understanding the Ancient Hebrew Theological System


What follows is an explanation of the ancient Hebrew
theological system, as scholars know it from piecing together
archaeology with the Biblical texts. The western Semitic
peoples, including Hebrews, Canaanites, and the more
archaic city of Ugarit, believed in a Father-God called El.
The name El and its variants are known throughout the Bible
El, Elyon, El-Shaddai, and Eloah. They believed El
spawned a brood of sons called bn-Ilm (Ugaritic) or beni-haElohim (Hebrew), which means "sons of El" or "sons of the
God," and that these sons of El participated in some kind of
divine government called "the congress of the gods."[9] The
operations of this congress are implicit within such Biblical
stories as the Tower of Babel, where Yahweh consults with
the other gods "Let us go down and confuse their
language"[10] and in Job, where "the sons of God came to
present themselves before Yahweh."[11]
El and his wife Athirat had a total of 70 sons in the
Biblical and Ugaritic traditions, or 77 in the Hittite tradition.
These were the "sons of God," and to each of them El gave a
nation as an inheritance. Yahweh was one of these sons of El,

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and his inheritance was Israel.[12] Consequently, each


nation was supposed to worship one of the sons of El as its
appointed God. Canaan worshipped Baal, Moab worshipped
Chemosh, Ammon worshipped Molech, and Israel
worshipped Yahweh. They all paid homage to El as the
Father-God. This can be seen in Jubilees, where Shem
"blessed the El of elohim (God of gods) who gave Yahweh's
word, and he blessed Yahweh."[13] In this passage, it sounds
as if Shem was blessing two distinct divine entities El and
Yahweh, Father and Son.
These ancient Semites assumed that the gods of other
nations truly existed. If somebody wanted to worship a
foreign god, they scooped up some dirt from the foreign soil
of that god's nation and took it home with them to worship
with, because the gods were geographically limited to a
certain nation. This can clearly be deduced from the story of
Naaman the leper, who took two mule loads of Israelite dirt
back to Syria on which to kneel down and pray to Yahweh.
The Prophet Elisha did not protest Naaman's theological
interpretation on this topic, but merely said, "Go in
peace."[14] Some even thought that the God of Israel was
confined to the mountains.[15] The national limitation of
deities is attested for by the Biblical Prophet Micah, and also
by Deuteronomy:
All the nations will walk each in the name of their own
god, and we will walk in the name of Yahweh our God
forever.[16]
When Elyon divided the nations, when He separated the
sons of Adam, he set the boundaries of the nations
according to the number of the sons of Elohim.[17]
What this passage means is this: The Father-God Elyon
divided the nations according to the number of sons he had,
and so each nation got its own god. Your Bible might say
"sons of Israel" in place of "sons of Elohim," but both the
Dead Sea Scrolls and the Septuagint attest that the Bible
originally said "sons of Elohim" not "sons of Israel,"[18] as
does Irenaeus also.[19] Scholars believe that the Hebrew
Bible was intentionally corrupted by the monotheists to read
"sons of Israel" because later Judaism evolved to become
monotheist.[20]
Often, even in early times, the national god was combined
with the Father-God El to form one entity, hence the term
"Yahweh Elyon" (the LORD Most High) in Genesis 14, and
"Yahweh Elohim" (the LORD God) these titles occurring
in the Yahwist narrative, which is considered to be the
earliest of the four major source texts of the Torah. Hence,
the two deities were collapsed into one long before
monotheism was invented. This also is the origin of
Trinitarian thinking that Jesus Christ, as an entity, can be
collapsed into a single entity with the Father and the Spirit,
thus making God three-in-one. Today, theologians often

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refer to the Trinity as a "mystery," but there was no such


"mystery" in the minds of ancient Christian Trinitarians.
They took it for granted, because it was consistent with the
same way they had thought for centuries. Only with the
general acceptance of the monotheistic heresy did the Trinity
become a seemingly self-contradictory "mystery."
On Psalm 82, Smith asserts Elohim (God) and Yahweh
are the same:
Here the figure of God, understood as Yahweh, takes
his stand in the assembly. The name El was understood
in the tradition and perhaps at the time of the original
text's composition as well to be none other but
Yahweh, and not a separate God called El.[21]
Yahweh's Right to Rule and the Covenant Relationship
This brings us to Psalm 82 itself, which tells another
aspect of ancient Hebrew religion the God of Israel's
rightful destiny to ultimately conquer the other gods and
appropriate their inheritances:

God is the president of El's Congress. He judges among


the gods saying "You are gods. You are all sons of
Elyon. But like mortals you will die, and like the rulers
you will fall." Rise O God, and judge the earth, for you
will inherit all nations.[22]

In a world filled with hostile nations and hostile gods, the


logical thing to do is to make your nation and your god the
top dog, so that you can defend your interests. That's exactly
how ancient Israel viewed things. Yahweh should be
president in the congress of gods, and he has a right to take
away all power and possessions of other gods.
This is especially evident when we study the Psalms and
the life story of King David. David's covenant with Yahweh
was simple: you keep me from being killed by my enemies,
and I will conquer all Israel's neighbors for you. The
covenant was a contractual obligation between two parties
for their mutual benefit. The benefit to David was a long
life. The benefit to Yahweh was the conquest of Edom,
Moab, Philistia, Syria, Ammon, and the national unity of
Israel. Once this is understood, David's Psalms make sense.
His frequent mention of the underworld and his intense fear
of death coupled with his description of Yahweh as a god of
war with nostrils filled with fire, riding on thunderclouds,
sword in hand, hurling lightening bolts, and shooting arrows
at his enemies, along with multiple songs of victory these
features are consistent with David's incessant wars of
conquest against all Israel's neighbors.

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It was a god-eat-god cosmic system, and David wanted to


ensure that his god was the top dog. This sort of alliance
system between gods and humans is what Old Testament
covenant theology is all about. When Israel went to war,
they carried the throne of Yahweh into battle, the Ark of the
Covenant, because Yahweh was their commander and ally.
Before they attacked, they consulted with Yahweh, to make
certain he approved of the military action. Every war was a
holy war against some other competing nation and its god.
Expanding the boundaries of your nation meant expanding
the empire of your covenant god, and your god would reward
you for it.

Jesus' Jihad
This type of theology does not stop in the Old Testament.
It is quite evident in the New Testament message of Jesus
Christ too. The types of personalities Jesus chose for his
Apostles mirrored that of King David. They had a tendency
toward violent bravery. Saint Peter toted a sword around.
When Jesus was threatened, Peter cut off the ear of the high
priest. Likewise Saint Paul, who actually committed murder
in the name of religion before being converted. James and
John were called sons of thunder. One of the Apostles was
named Simon the Zealot. The Zealots were a boisterous antiRoman faction, essentially hell bent on violence in the name
of freedom. What else would one expect from a Messiah who
said, "Do not think that I came to bring peace to the earth. I
did not come to bring peace, but a sword?"[23]
Jesus Christ made friends with hated bureaucrats,
prostitutes, and social outcasts. He was not looking for
ethical people. He was looking for loyal people. He was
looking for people in the dregs of society who would fight for
him who would risk everything for him, because they had
nothing to loose anyway.
Conspicuously absent from Jesus Christ's inner circle
were people such as Gandhi or Mother Teresa. There were
no such Apostles or disciples of that nature. If the Christian
God is a God of Almighty Universal Love, this simply makes
no sense. On the other hand, if Jesus Christ is not all
powerful, then he is a god among gods, who must fight his
way to become chief of the gods, or else become a slave to
gods more powerful than himself. In this case, he would not
want Gandhi or Mother Teresa in his army, because they are
too universalistic in their theology, and therefore too apt to
be kind to the enemy. Instead, he would want to save violent
people who were ferociously loyal to him.
This also explains the doctrine of hell. Why would an
Almighty God torture people forever? Isn't that sadistic?
But on the other hand, if the gods are at war, it stands to
reason that they will incarcerate prisoners of war. Such is
the Christian perception of hell, for in the New Testament,

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hell is described as a dungeon of spirits in chains, who are


awaiting judgment,[24] and they will be judged at the time of
the resurrection, that is after the war is over, when they can
receive due process of law as non-combatants.[25] This
makes perfect sense with regard to the rules of war.
To be sure, Jesus Christ certainly aspires to attain a
master plan of love, whereby if he is victorious, he will
implement a policy of peace, love, and justice. But until
victory is realized, Jesus must conserve his resources. He
cannot afford to save people who are not loyal to him. If a
violent sinner is more loyal to him than Gandhi, he will save
the violent sinner first, for at least violence and loyalty is
useful on the field of battle, but universal love is not.
This is not the mentality of an Almighty God. Rather, it is
the mentality of a god who is struggling in a death match
with other gods, who desperately needs to recruit loyal
soldiers. He is not looking for saints. He is looking for
soldiers.

Henotheism, Gnosticism, and Evolutionary Science Agree


A fundamental principle that unites Henotheism,
Gnosticism, and evolutionary science is this: they all reject
any notion that the governing force of this cosmos is good
and just.
The governing force of ancient Near Eastern Henotheism
was the Father-God El, who was known for his support of the
hostile forces of nature, such as Yamm (the ocean) and Mot
(the desert), which were symbolized in mythology as
grotesque primordial monsters and serpents.
Likewise, the governing force of Gnosticism was the
demiurge, who was known for his arrogance and stupidity,
which caused him and his stupid perverted angels to create a
failed cosmos.
The governing force of evolutionary science is natural
selection or survival of the fittest, which is nothing but the
selfish instinct to preserve one's own interests at the expense
of others. For 540 million years, animals have been ripping
each other's throats out and feeding on each other's misery.
There is no room for a Universal God of Love in such a
system. Rather, there is violence among the animals, and
war among the gods.
Click here to read more about how the ancient scriptures
prove that the God of the Prophets was not all powerful.

The creationist narrative in Genesis 1 is contradicted by


many ancient Christian texts. Instead of an Almighty
Creator God, ancient Christian texts espouse that the

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universe is born from blind arrogance and stupidity.


The angels caused evolution to occur from species to
species. There are many gods, (or aliens?), and the
Christian God is just one among them. Satan the Devil
writes scripture, and thus the Bible was polluted with
Genesis 1. Archaeology and modern scholarship
demonstrate that Genesis is indeed corrupted.
Cavemen walk with Adam and Eve. Esoteric
prophecies reveal the coming of Christ, and also reveal
the dark forces that govern the cosmos. Such are the
ancient Christian writings.
Sciencevindicates the truth of these ideas. Evolution often
happens too fast for Darwins theory. Gaps in the fossil
record indicate that some kind of unnatural force acts
together with natural selection. Astrobiology reveals that
intelligent life probably evolved long before us. The fossil
record reveals strange clues that aliens abducted species and
transported them across oceans, and that DNA from diverse
lineages was combined to spawn hybrid species. Evidently,
aliens influence evolution, and they are the gods of the
worlds religions.
This is not fiction. All these facts are thoroughly documented
in the links above.

[1] 1st Corinthians 8:5-6


[2] Acts 15:29, 1st John 5:21, Revelation 2:14, 2:20, 9:20
[3] 1st Corinthians 10:19-22
[4] Smith, Mark S. The Origins of Biblical Monotheism: Israel's Polytheistic Background and the
Ugaritic Texts. 2001, Oxford University Press, New York, NY, p 175, 90-92, 87
[5] Dever, William G. Who Were the Early Israelites and Where Did They Come From? 2003,
Eerdmans Publishing, Grand Rapids, MI, p 128
[6] 1st Samuel 5:2-4
[7] Ruth 1:15
[8] Jeremiah 48:7
[9] Smith, Mark. The Origins of Biblical Monotheism: Israels Polytheistic Background and the
Ugaritic Texts. 2001, Oxford University Press, New York, NY, p 37-53
[10] Genesis 11:7
[11] Job 1:6, 2:1
[12] Smith, Mark S. The Origins of Biblical Monotheism: Israel's Polytheistic Background and the
Ugaritic Texts. 2001, Oxford University Press, New York, NY, p 55, 157, 44-46, 63
[13] Jubilees 8:20-21
[14] 2nd Kings 5:17-19
[15] 1st Kings 20:28
[16] Micah 4:5
[17] Deuteronomy 32:8, Dead Sea Scrolls and Septuagint. Masoretic text is corrupted to read
"sons of Israel" in place of "sons of elohim."

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[18] Abegg, Martin Jr; Flint, Peter; Ulrich, Eugene. The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible: The Oldest
Known Bible Translated for the First Time into English. 1996, HarperCollins Publishers Inc, New
York, NY, p 191
[19] Irenaeus. Against Heresies 3.12.9
[20] Smith, Mark S. The Origins of Biblical Monotheism: Israel's Polytheistic Background and the
Ugaritic Texts. 2001, Oxford University Press, New York, NY, p 48-49, 73
[21] Smith, Mark S. ibid, p 48, 156
[22] Psalm 82:1,6-8
[23] Quelle, Luke 12:51, Matthew 10:34
[24] 2nd Peter 2:4, 1st Peter 3:19
[25] 1st Peter 3:19-4:6, Revelation 20:11-15

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