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Priesthood And The Development Of Cult In The Books Of Kings

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Chapter Summary

Knowledge about the development of the priesthood and cult in the 2nd millennium BCE is essential background for understanding priesthood in The Books of Kings. In the Late Bronze city states of Hazor, Lachish, Shechem, Megiddo, Succoth, Gath-Carmel and Beth-shean the existence of sanctuaries has been archaeologically verified. During the early Iron Age the tradition of the Late Bronze city temples was maintained only in the Philistine cities, while the shape of the shrines in the hill country experienced extensive change. The emergence of the kingdom and therefore the formation of the territorial states Israel and Judah also meant transition for the sanctuaries. The history of the Dan sanctuary can only be guessed from other old traditions in Old Testament and extra-biblical texts. Most of the information regarding priesthood in the Southern Kingdom naturally concentrates on the Solomonic Temple.

Keywords: Israel; Judah; Solomonic temple; The Books of Kings

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