The Tanakh provides the groundwork for the Jewish/Hebrew religion from the third century BCE (Trulove, Woelfel, Aauerbach, & Buller, 2007). One centralized theme discussed in the Tanakh is going against a higher power. In Genesis, God told Adam and Eve “‘you shall not eat of [the tree of the knowledge of good and evil] or touch it, lest you die’” (Trulove et al., 2007, p. 40). Adam and Eve chose to consume a piece of fruit from the tree; as a consequence, God banished them from the Garden of Eden (Trulove et al., 2007). As a result of their sin, the world became corrupt and “filled with lawlessness” (Trulove et al., 2007, p. 43). In these instances, the higher power was the people’s God. When they disobeyed him, they suffered the consequences. These consequences were more severe since a divine power was in charge. Similarly, in Exodus, the Pharaoh “set taskmasters over [the Israelites] to oppress them into forced labor” (Trulove et al., 2007, p. 58). The Pharaoh established rules and punishments for the taskmasters to bestow on the Israelites. In this situation, the higher power was the ruler of the land. The Israelites not only had to follow the laws set forth by the Pha...
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...the sky and below the earth” instead of the god that the state permitted people to worship. People in every country, not just the United States, should be free to worship however they choose. Fortunately, in the United States, our Constitution prevents the government from controlling our religious freedoms.
In summary, even though ancient texts are looked to as reference, they should not always be taken literally. Some concepts, including gender roles, government-appointed religions, and covenants with God, need to or have already been done away with. On the other hand, the determination to do what is morally and legally proper must continue to be an integral part of modern society. People should examine these ancient works, analyze how different civilizations dealt with success as well as conflict, and try to incorporate the lessons learned in their own lives.
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