To do this, sacrifices, offerings, and liturgy were offered to the deities. Who appears in the early Hebrew Bible. Because of this, religious leaders played important roles in the society and throughout the Tanakh. The other types of sacrifices offered the same opportunity for the poor. The deity being worshiped, usually Yahweh, was understood to be physically present in the temple, have a body, & be a personal god with emotions & willpower. Hebrews or the religion Judaism …show more content… He created him; male and female He created them.” (Gen 1:26, RWH 128) The people of Ancient Israel believed that there life was given by god and they were the chosen people under his rule. As I stated earlier, Judaism is one of the oldest Monotheistic religions still being practiced today, which means that the ancient Hebrew culture and religion is still being followed. 09 Dec 2020. No plagiarism, guaranteed! In the following paragraphs, we will explore the aforementioned aspects of ancient Israelite and Judean religion in more detail. For, "the presentation of Israel’s past in the biblical narrative from Genesis to 2 Kings is an ideological construct by intellectuals" after the 7th century BCE "who, nevertheless, transmitted some memories dating from the tenth to the sixth centuries BCE" (Knauf and Guillaume, 53). Hebrew flourished as a spoken language in Canaan from the 10th century BCE until the Babylonian exile. Reconstructed Israelite Houseby Talmoryair (Public Domain). Deprived of their historic rituals and unable to follow their usual religious patterns, the exiles were compelled to adopt new forms of worship. The Torah is the Hebrews’ set of instructions that the father gives to the child. This does not indicate that Yahweh only cared about ethics and did not care about his cult; rather, it indicates that ethics impacted whether or not Yahweh would provide sustenance for the people. The first five books of the Hebrew Bible, for example, emphasize the importance of ethical behavior. The Old Testament, I believe is what ties these three religious cultures together. Thus, ancient Israelite and Judean religion shares a similar ritual framework; however, the ritual is also distinct from other West Semitic rituals in terms of the centrality around one sanctuary. Ritual was not the only form of religious devotion, however. Those who had learned the spiritual lessons of the Exile were ready to follow the teac… The literary prophets and Hebrew religion. The Hebrew culture has influenced several religious cultures of today, and several religions have taken teachings, structures, and laws from the Hebrew religion and incorporates them into their modern day practices and moral and religious values. So, the worshippers were required to maintain the temple’s holiness so that the deity would be able to live in the temple, which was considered his or her house. Priority, though, tended to be given to Yahweh. The ancient Hebrews often lived as nomads in the wilderness much like the Bedouins of the Near and Middle East today. The Hebrews, especially Abraham, crossed over from a migratory sense. Our latest articles delivered to your inbox, once a week: Our mission is to engage people with cultural heritage and to improve history education worldwide. Despite the experiment of Akhenaten in Egypt and a few Babylonian texts that try to associate all divine power with Marduk alone, the Jews were the first to insist that their god was the only god and a universal god. It does differ, though, in one major way. Ancient History Encyclopedia. Cite This Work In this sense, Abraham the Hebrew, may have also been called, Abraham the Habiru. All three a relatively old, With Hebrew being the oldest, Judaism being the second oldest, and Christianity shortly behind that. Map of the Levant circa 830 BCEby Richardprins (GNU FDL). Giving Thanks is the Hebrew noun תּוֹדָה Todah. writers. the Hebrew Bible), and new ideas regarding the worship of Yahweh. The purpose of the Torah is to help guide children to maturity. Further information: Ancient Canaanite religion The word el (singular) is a standard term for "god" in Aramaic, paleo-Hebrew, and other related Semitic languages including Ugaritic. One scholar suggests that "whatever the biblical authors may have tried to convey, may not have been… the primary form of belief or religious exercise" (Gilmour, 100). The majority of this religious principles and values still live on today. License. The idea of the house of Israel or the house of Judah is rooted in the idea of family religion. It is based both on ancient magicians' own compositions and products in Aramaic, Hebrew and Greek, and on the descriptions and prescriptions of non-magicians, to reconstruct a historical picture that is as balanced and nuanced as possible. And they worshiped Yahweh, the only God. The Ancient Egyption religion had many Gods. Within Judean and Israelite communities, primary devotion was oftentimes towards Yahweh. Judaism’s true origins are traced back to Abraham. Although oftentimes considered to be taboo, divination was an important part of ancient Israelite and Judean religion. Ancient History Encyclopedia. In terms of practice, temple worship and sacrificial rituals like Yom Kippur, New Moon festivals, Pesach, and other festivals played a central role. https://www.ancient.eu/article/1097/. Judaism combined aspects of the Canaanite and Babylonian religions. The consequence of not following the standards is being "cut off from the people." "Ancient Israelite & Judean Religion." 2 Kings 17:16 even references people who worship Asherah and Baal. One inscription from this site reads, "to YHWH of Samaria and to Asherata." The Torah is passed from the father to the child the way all Torah have been passed down. For only $5 per month you can become a member and support our mission to engage people with cultural heritage and to improve history education worldwide. If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help! The Nevi’im is about the nation’s history and land. There is a lot to learn from the Hebrew culture and traits from both ancient and present Hebrew cultures are present in modern day Christianity. Solomon's Temple, Jerusalemby Unknown Artist (Public Domain). Company Registration No: 4964706. Christians follow the Old Testament, which the ancient Hebrew culture follows along with the Jewish culture. This sort of correlation is evident throughout the Hebrew Bible. For, if the house of Yahweh became too polluted, he would have to leave. The “history of Israelite religion” may be provisionally defined as the attempt, by various means and methods, to reconstruct the religious thinking and practices of the ancient Israelite people during the periods reflected in or most directly pertinent to the biblical texts themselves – namely, the Late Bronze Age through the Persian Period/Iron Age III (1500–332 BCE). ", Schweiwend, W. "An Early Iron Age Phase to Kuntillet 'Ajrud. Drawing on an example in 1 Samuel 20, van der Toorn explains: What we learn from the passage is that there was a communal meal at which meat was eaten…; that the 'entire clan'… had to be present; that it was celebrated in Bethlehem, the home town of David, presumably because this was the place where the claim had its inherited land in which the ancestors lay buried… On the basis of this data, it has been suggested that the … clan sacrifice was in fact 'the occasion on which genealogical accounts were employed to invoke the names of dead ancestors.' In this piece of poetry from Judah and Israel, we have an example of a tradition in which other deities are within the pantheon; however, Yahweh takes the central role. However, like the ancient Hebrew culture, Judaism believes in one just God. The letter at the top of the inscription is the aleph and is a picture of an ox head representing strength. Though some ancient religions predate Judaism… This is not an example of the work produced by our Essay Writing Service. There is no such government for today’s Jewish culture. At the same time, some traditions explicitly ban divination. The ancient Hebrew culture followed the TaNaKh, which has three different parts to it. As both Judah and Israel were emerging states, Yahweh was the national deity, an idea which finds its origins in religious practices from the Bronze Age. Thus, it is possible that "families honoured their ancestors by verbal rites and the presentation of offerings, and focused their religious devotion on the 'god of the father' or the 'god of the house'. The Ancient Hebrew culture was a culture defined by many things but mostly for their construction of their religion. Other examples come from the Hebrew Bible itself. Our academic experts are ready and waiting to assist with any writing project you may have. Henotheism is recognition and worship of many deities; however, the primary worship revolves around a single deity. Outside of the Hebrew Bible, one of the best examples of ancient Israelite and Judean religion comes from an archaeological site called Kuntillet 'Ajrud, possibly dating as early as the 10th century BCE. Although, it has its roots in the polytheistic Ancient Semitic Religions. The Hebrew word orahh can mean a path used by travelers, as well as the path of life, a lifestyle. The Ancient Hebrews and the Habiru. Gideon Bohak gives a pioneering account of the broad history of ancient Jewish magic, from the Second Temple to the rabbinic period. Thus, to a certain extent, the Hebrew Bible reflects well the past in ancient Judah and Israel; however, as a compilation of Judean traditions, it sometimes misrepresents or altogether ignores what happened in the past. Our lecture notes say that the Hebrew literature was not put into writing until after the most prosperous time period. Other evidence from ancient Israel—the society in which the Hebrew Bible was generated—is also often of little use. The TaNaKh is the Hebrew bible and consists of the religious history and their religious principles. Therefore, we can confidently say that among the spectrums of how people in ancient Israel and Judah practiced religion, Asherah and Yahweh were both honored in cults. e Hebrew Bible in Philosophy of Religion .....81 5. Philosophical Criticism as Biblical Criticism .....199 8. Looking for a flexible role? Likewise, it was not necessarily frowned upon. The Day of Atonement is very similar to a ritual in Ugaritic texts (KTU 1.40), which date around the 13th century BCE. The Christian religion is one of the biggest worldwide religions of this time. The first part, the Torah, is also called the Pentateuch. This national atonement also served to strengthen political bonds and unity. Retrieved from https://www.ancient.eu/article/1097/. Assuming the Hebrew Bible reflects proto-Israelite religion, some scholars suspect that they performed rituals in honor of the deceased. For example, a group on Mount Samaria is referenced as "the ones who oppress the poor and crush the needy" (Amos 4:1). Possible Analogies for a Philosophy of Ancient Israelite Religion .....155 7. Abraham and his family crossed over into the land of Canaan from Mesopotamia. Copyright © 2003 - 2020 - UKEssays is a trading name of All Answers Ltd, a company registered in England and Wales. Early Jewish people lived in small tribal like communities in what is now present day Israel and Jordan. Thank you! Jeff A. Benner is dedicated to teaching proper Biblical interpretation through the study of the Hebrew alphabet, language, culture and philosophy. The Ancient Hebrew language is a concrete oriented language meaning that the meaning of Hebrew words are rooted in something that can be sensed by the five senses such as a tree which can be seen, sweet which can be tasted and noise which can be heard. While many of the polytheistic gods were believed to be quite powerful, they were flawed beings, prone to pride and lust. The work of the earliest writing prophets marked a resurgence of covenant faith and brought a new vitality to bear upon ancient religious tenets by reinterpreting their spiritual truths and applying them to contemporary religious … I believe that even the beliefs and structure has remained relatively the same even from religion to religion. As early as the 10th century BCE, Israelite and Judean religion began to emerge within the broader West Semitic culture, otherwise known as Canaanite culture. Last modified July 13, 2017. Abraham’s descendants established kingdoms in the region of modern day Israel and Jordan until they were exiled by the Babylonians and Romans. Whereas other Canaanite languages and dialects have become extinct, Hebrew has survived. Finally, Leviticus 18-22 offers a series of moral and ethical standards. Narrative in the Hebrew Bible tells a similar story. The ancient Greek religion included a large variety of major and minor deities that specialized in certain aspects of human needs. Before a centralized authority or state began to take formation around the 10th century BCE, people within Syria-Palestine practiced a form of family religion. Practices such as divination and prophecy were also common forms of religious devotion. The Nevi’im has the former prophets and the latter prophets, such as Joshua, the two books of Samuel, and Jonah. Christianity originated from the ancient Jewish religion. According to long lasting tradition, Abraham was the very first Jew. Books An inscription from another archaeological site (Khirbet el-Qom, 8th century BCE) says the following: "Blessed is Uriahu by YHWH for through Asherata He saved him from his enemy." The Ugaritic goddess Athirat was a mediator for El, the chief god of the Ugaritic pantheon. Related Content Importantly, though, this consequence is not the punishment for bad behavior; rather, the consequence is necessary in order to maintain sanctity and holiness within the community and of the temple. Brown, W. (2017, July 13). You can obtain a subscription to the Hebrew Bible and Ancient Israel (HeBAI) from your bookstore, your subscription agent or directly from the publisher. The purpose of the Day of Atonement was to purify the sanctuary; for sin was thought to pollute the sanctuary. He is best known from the Hebrew Bible. For example, a person bringing a burnt offering could offer a bull, sheep or goat, or turtledove or pigeon. While the line of Judah and figures like David existed, they were not necessarily central to ancient Israelite and Judean religious practice. Asherata, also known as Asherah, was a deity within the Ugaritic pantheon. The religion of the Hebrews was monotheistic, recognizing only a single god. https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/ancient-jewish-religion-and-culture The religion of ancient Israel was not as simple as most people might think. In its Latin form, Biblia Hebraica, it traditionally serves as a title for printed editions of the Masoretic Text.Many scholars advocate use of the term Hebrew Bible when discussing these books in academic writing, as a neutral substitute to terms with religious connotations. The God of the … The Jewish culture also uses the Old Testament to teach and to rule over their followers, and follows the Hebrew culture fairly closely. The earliest Hebrew texts date from the second millennium B.C.E. I believe that the Hebrew culture is a culture that has remained pretty much the same in structure and teachings with few changes from religion to religion. Furthermore, the Jews were forbidden to represent this god in sculpture or painting. The subsequent history of Heb. 1st Jan 1970 Hebrew (Israel) and Moabite (Jordan) are Southern Canaanite while Phoenician (Lebanon) is Northern Canaanite. Outside of the Hebrew Bible, one of the best examples of ancient Israelite and Judean religion comes from an archaeological site called Kuntillet 'Ajrud, possibly dating as early as the 10th century BCE. VAT Registration No: 842417633. Another example is in 1 Samuel 4. Without the ritual, Yahweh would, potentially, leave the sanctuary. Despite the experiment of Akhenaten in Egypt and a few Babylonian texts that try to associate all divine power with Marduk alone, the Jews were the first to insist that their god was the only god and a universal god. Based on these inscriptions, Psalms, Kings, Deuteronomy, and other unmentioned evidence, though, we know this is not the case; rather, henotheism was likely the norm for ancient Israelites and Judeans. Focused between the 10th and 7th centuries BCE, we will consider the broader West Semitic cultural framework, family religion, henotheism, ritual, and ethical behavior. The Christian culture uses the Old Testament the same way as the Hebrew and Jewish cultures, with the exception of the addition of The New Testament being implemented into the Christianity. Another inscription reads, "To YHWH of Teman and to Asherata" (Na’aman, 305). King Saul needs to speak to Samuel the prophet’s ghost. Brown, William. The Jewish culture is one of the oldest Monotheistic religions. Thus, this text demonstrates that divination did occur in ancient Israelite and Judean practice and ritual. To the Ancient Hebrews, their religion was their lifestyle and covered all aspects of life from worship to using the latrine (see Deuteronomy 23:13,14). Also, all three use the Old Testament as a basis for teaching and as a guideline for living. The word "Hebrew", and its use in designating the ancient Hebrews associated with the Israelites of the Old Testament, is a term somewhat shrouded in mystery. "the path one walks. Furthermore, ancient Israelite and Judean religion shared the common idea that the deity was a divine essence. Therefore at the end of their prosperous period, they put together the TaNaKh. In Ugaritic literature, we see a similar understanding of the deities. Having offered a basic idea of what and how some ancient Israelites and Judeans may have thought about their deities, we can now look at how ancient Judeans and Israelites practiced religion within their material environment. He then placed his hand on the head of a goat, transferred the impurities to the goat, and made one final burnt offering to atone for the people (Leviticus 16). The Nevi’im is the book of the Prophets. In this verse, El is said to assign nations and people groups to his divine sons, namely deities. Also from the Ancient Hebrew culture came the Jewish religions, which lead to the start of Christianity and therefore the beginning of the different Christian religions. Although the many Jewish and Christians traditions suggest that Yahweh was the main and only deity through all Israelite and Judean religious history, archaeology, inscriptions, and the Hebrew Bible itself indicate otherwise. The texts, though, were not always understood as divinely inspired, authoritative, holy texts; the role of Judean texts in religious expression developed between the 6th century BCE and 1st century CE. Christianity originated from the ancient Jewish religion. The polytheism, though, was counterbalanced by devotion to one or two primary deities, a practice known as henotheism (van der Toorn, 2047). Between the 10th century and 7th centuries BCE, ancient Israelite and Judean religion was polytheistic. Bibliography Abraham embraced the idea that one God created and rules every aspect of the universe; an intriguing idea that still holds true in modern day Christianity. The Hebrew religion, so important and far-reaching in its influence on human culture, did not spring up overnight. Hebrew is an ancient Semitic language. Consequently, the people were atoned for. Ancient Israelite & Judean Religion. Brown, William. Likewise, Baal worship occurs consistently throughout the narrative, suggesting that he "played a large part in the belief of the Israelite population" during the Iron Age (DDD 1999, 137). Yahweh is traditionally thought of as the Israelite god who is the main god of the Tanakh (sacred Jewish scriptures). The Hebrew culture used the Old testament to teach their children and also to use as a law as to what is expected of them from the culture. This Messiah brought about the largest following in the history of the world. People familiar with the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament may have noticed that there was no discussion about the religious importance of aspects like the Law, Moses, and the Davidic Dynasty. An area of concentration, of which the most common are (a) the religion of ancient Israel and the comparative study of religion, (b) pre-exilic history, (c) post-exilic Second Temple history, (d) late Second Temple, early rabbinic, and early Christian interpretation of the Hebrew Bible, and (d) theology of the Hebrew … Broadly speaking, these form a basic framework for how ancient Israelites and Judeans expressed religious devotion to their deity. Thus, the Hebrew Bible did not begin as a single book; rather, it developed over time through the compilation of many Judean texts. Ancient Semitic religion encompasses the polytheistic religions of the Semitic peoples from the ancient Near East and Northeast Africa. So, although the Hebrew Bible preserves traditions going back as far as the 11th century BCE, the theological and cultural positions between the 7th and 3rd centuries BCE were likely read into the past and, among these, was monotheism. The Ancient Hebrew Word Picture for Thanks. Some ritual texts from a Syrian city called Emar include the same levels of sacrifice, namely levels which enabled the poor to make offerings. The reason such religious aspects were not included was that these reflect religious ideas developed between the 7th and 4th centuries BCE. a. Eighth-century B.C. The nonsacrificial worship contemplated by Jeremiah became a reality in Babylonia. Hebrew religion was unquestionably unique in character in the ancient Near E. From geographical origins in Mesopotamia it was gradually fostered through the patriarchal period until it assumed its normative covenantal character at Sinai. The Ancient History Encyclopedia logo is a registered EU trademark. Among the Christian religions are Catholicism, Lutherans, and Baptist, among many more. The only literature is religious works. Web. From the ancient Hebrew culture came the Jewish religion. Any linguist scholar can advocate how much is lost in the translation of one text into another language, and the same can undoubtedly be said for the translation of the Hebrew text into Latin, Ancient Greek, or any other language. The religion of the Hebrews was monotheistic, recognizing only a single god. Philosophy of Religion and Hebrew Bible Interpretation: A Brief History of Interdisciplinary Relations .....41 4. ) "the path one walks. She is also a common figure in the Hebrew Bible. Please note that content linked from this page may have different licensing terms. "An elaborate framework of divine mitzvot, or commandments, combined with rabbinic laws and traditions, this law is central to Judaism.. Halakhah governs not just religious life, but daily life, from how to dress to what to eat to how to help the poor. Registered Data Controller No: Z1821391. The third and final part of the TaNaKh is the Ketuvim. To me they have pretty much the same belief system; all three believe in the coming of the Messiah. Within each type of sacrifice, there were three levels of material objects which could be offered. He is proficient in Hebrew, Akkadian, and Greek, and has published a few articles in academic journals and Ancient History Encyclopedia. In the ancient world, ethical behavior played an important role in religion. When the Amarna Letters were discovered, the term Habiru surfaced frequently for the first time. In this passage, though, the witch is not condemned for performing necromancy. In other words, they did not change their behavior. The ethical behavior of the Judean peoples was an important aspect of religion because it ensured the enduring presence of the deity in the temple. In other words, Judaism was the first monotheistic religion. In Judaism, rituals and religious observances are grounded in Jewish law (halakhah, lit. Canaanite is closely related to Aramaic and to a lesser extent South-Central Arabic. The ethical behavior, though, is not a distinct category from religion in the ancient world; rather, ethical behavior impacts whether or not the deity, namely Yahweh, resides in the sanctuary or temple. "Ancient Israelite & Judean Religion." In Psalm 82, for example, Yahweh stands in the council of El, the high deity in West Semitic mythology. The name ''Yahweh'' is used throughout much of the Tanakh and in Exodus, Yahweh reveals this divine name to the p… Additionally, attentive readers may notice that there was no discussion of Judaism. In order to solve this potential problem, a high priest would perform the sacrificial ritual by sacrificing for the sins of the people and sprinkling blood upon the altar. *You can also browse our support articles here >. Submitted by William Brown, published on 13 July 2017 under the following license: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike. Between the 10th and 7th centuries BCE, ancient Israelite and Judean religion took place in cultic and temple contexts. The Ketuvim has less authority than the Torahs teachings or the Nevi’ims prophecies. There is very little literature about the ancient Hebrew culture. There would be no reason for a law such as this, though, if divination was not practiced. The first five books of the Hebrew Bible, called the Torah (a Hebrew word meaning teachings), are the foundation to the rest of the Bible. I believe that before the end of the Hebrews’ prosperous period, they did not believe that their culture would always be on top. Likewise, ancient Israelite history, particularly the religious history, is difficult to work with because one must sift through the Hebrew Bible in order to decide what may reflect the past most accurately. We've received widespread press coverage since 2003, Your UKEssays purchase is secure and we're rated 4.4/5 on reviews.co.uk. Thus, the biblical authors depicted a direct correlation between the patriarchs’ (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob) prosperity and their fidelity to YHWH. This was the atmosphere, or context, in which ancient Israelite and Judean religion began to emerge. Abstract concepts such as "praise" have no foundation in the concrete and are a product of ancient Greek philosophy. Below that is the letter lamed and is a picture of a shepherd staff representing authority. The language was likely a commonly spoken until the fall of Jerusalem in 587 B.C.E. The Ketuvim is the part of the TaNaKh that consists of different writings and poetries. Religion was probably the most important thing to the ancient Israelites. You can view samples of our professional work here. From simple essay plans, through to full dissertations, you can guarantee we have a service perfectly matched to your needs. He claims this because the Hebrew Bible itself was likely edited and compiled between the 7th and 3rd centuries BCE. Hebrew Bible is a term that refers to the common portions of the Tanakh (Jewish canon) and the Christian canons. Many people mentioned in the Bible lived this nomadic lifestyle including: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses and David. Ancient History Encyclopedia, 13 Jul 2017. For example, in 1 Kings 16:33, King Ahab makes a shrine for Asherah. Followers would pray and participate in rituals to appeal to these gods for favors; the god they chose to ask for help varied based on the need. The Ancient Hebrew religion (called Judaism today) was based on the idea of one universal God above all others. Additionally, one of the earliest translations of the Hebrew Bible into another language in the 3rd century BCE attests to the henotheism of ancient Israel. This was the product of a long religious evolution, crystallized by Moses, who vigorously imposed monotheism during the 40 years of life wandering through the desert, after the exodus. Nations and people groups to his divine sons, namely deities by a University student which the Hebrew, have... Judah is rooted in the Bible lived this nomadic lifestyle including: Abraham Isaac! Divination and prophecy were also common forms of worship, primary devotion was oftentimes towards Yahweh took. Regarding ancient Israelite history deities to other peoples relatively Old, with Hebrew the! Qeiyafaby Ricardo Tulio Gandelman ( CC by ) CC by ) society and throughout the Hebrew history, the were. To worship their primary deity, represented a person named Uriahu before Yahweh service perfectly matched your. Prophecy were also common forms of worship El, the Song of Songs, Ruth Esther. Standards is being `` cut off from the people. published a few articles academic! ’ set of instructions that the Israelite god who is the book of the Ugaritic equivalent to.... The common portions of the vastness of the Messiah concrete and are product! Ukessays purchase is secure and we 're rated 4.4/5 on reviews.co.uk, though, high... Israelite religion..... 81 5 given to Yahweh taboo, divination was not practiced our lecture say... - UKEssays is a picture of an ox head representing strength previous inscriptions demonstrate, worship Yahweh. Adopt new forms of worship Moses and David, the other deities in the coming of Messiah. Here to help of green pastures each type of sacrifice, there may be read as Yahweh, Ba'al and. This verse, Yahweh poor within the society and throughout the Hebrew Bible does not accurately represent people... 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Richardprins ( GNU FDL ) company registered in England and Wales a covenant binding YHWH and Israel to one through! * you can guarantee we have a service perfectly matched to your needs to offer sacrifice Samuel the ’... The Levant circa 830 BCEby Richardprins ( GNU FDL ) another inscription reads, `` to YHWH of Samaria to... Includes divination in some traditions explicitly ban divination the deceased people. religious played... Hebrews often lived as nomads in the concrete and are a product of Israelite! Relatively the same even from religion to religion it has its roots in the coming of the,... Region of modern day Christianity reaches almost all parts of the oldest known monotheistic religions, the.