Ascent to Heaven in Jewish and Christian Apocalypses by Martha Himmelfarb

By Martha Himmelfarb

It is a learn of the traditional Jewish and Christian apocalypses regarding ascent into heaven, that have acquired little scholarly recognition compared to apocalypses involved basically with the top of the realm. contemporary advancements just like the e-book of the Aramaic Enoch fragments from Qumran and curiosity in questions of style within the learn of the apocalypses make this a very acceptable time to adopt this learn. Martha Himmelfarb locations the apocalypses relating to either their biblical antecedents and their context within the Greco-Roman international. Her research emphasizes the emergence of the knowledge of heaven as temple within the publication of the Watchers, the earliest of those apocalypses, and how during which this figuring out impacts the depiction of the end result of ascent, the hero's fulfillment of a spot one of the angels, within the ascent apocalypses commonly. It additionally considers where of secrets and techniques of nature and primeval heritage in those works. eventually, it deals an interpretation of the pseudepigraphy of the apocalypses and their function.

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The problem is that there is no consensus about Ezekiel's relationship to P or about P's relationship to conditions of the period before the exile. Ezekiel's vision of the restored temple provides only for linen (pistim) garments for the priests (44:17-19), and no high priest is mentioned. 64 The Heavenly Priesthood Every temple needs priests, and the priests of the heavenly temple in 1 Enoch 14 are angels: A blazing fire encircled him, and a great fire stood in front of him, so that none who surrounded could draw near to him; ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him.

73 So the Jerusalem priesthood of the late third and early second centuries was not all of a piece; a pious man like the author of the Book of the Watchers might not have wished to condemn all priests. Only later do the Hasmonean usurpation of the high priesthood and the rapid loss of traditional values by the new high priestly family and the priestly aristocracy From Ezekiel to the Book of the Watchers 23 generally lead to a view of the Jerusalem priesthood as utterly corrupt, a view that precipitated the emergence of the Qumran community.

There can be no doubt that Ezekiel's temple is in accord with "traditional patterns" if by that we mean that Ezekiel worries about the issues involved in the proper maintenance of the sacred that have always concerned priests. But the relationship between the details of his plan—and for priests details are all-important—and the preexilic reality is far from straightforward. " Eor Hanson it settles From Ezekiel to the Book of the Watchers 27 the argument to say that Ezekiel's "priestly interests" are visible beneath the visionary forms, because Hanson sees priestly interests as incompatible with visionary concerns.

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