It is accurate, though perhaps presumptuous in a Cecil B. de Mille sort of way, to describe this book as a history of God....

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THE GOD OF THE BEGINNINGS

It is accurate, though perhaps presumptuous in a Cecil B. de Mille sort of way, to describe this book as a history of God. Mr. Aron, basing himself upon traditional literary sources (the Bible and tradition, the latter as reflected principally in the Talmud and the Midrash) as well as upon a wealth of secondary sources in anthropology, archaeology, and comparative religion, traces the origins and evolution of the concept of the Judaeo-Christian God to whom, as the author points out, western civilization, even if under occasional protest, owes its existence and survival. After introductory chapters on the God-Contour in pro-literary, or pre-Biblical, history, he explores the development of the idea of a personal God-Creator through Genesis, the ""first covenants"" with Adam and Noah, the God of Abraham, to the God of Moses, who for all practical intents and purposes is the Judaeo-Christian God of the twentieth century. The author's style is readably journalistic rather than scholarly, and his work is intelligently organized and presented. However, one cannot help noting certain deficiencies (for example, one will look in vain for an adequate account of the all-important influence of the religious reforms, of the eighteenth Egyptian dynasty upon the Yahweh of Israel) which render the work suitable for the believer in the inspired nature of the Bible, but wholly inadequate for the purposes of the historian, anthropologist, or the advanced reader.

Pub Date: March 28, 1966

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Morrow

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1966