Jerusalem Paper #1 Revision - University of California Los...

Info icon This preview shows pages 1–4. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
University of California, Los Angeles Sacred Jerusalem as Political Space Richard Page AN N EA 10 – Jerusalem: Holy City Professor Alice Mandell TA Adam DiBattista 1 May 2016
Image of page 1

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Page In the fledgling Kingdom of Israel, God’s will was the ultimate justification for the state’s existence and its actions. God’s promise to the legendary patriarch of the tribes was the basic foundation for the Israelites’ claim to their land, and the particular choice of location for the city of Jerusalem was based on the location of the Binding of Isaac. As the state grew in influence, The Temple of Solomon and the Ark of the Covenant were symbols of Israel’s increasing power; these apparent artifacts of God were used to legitimize and cement Israel’s dominance in the Levant. In accordance, the eventual destruction of the Temple and the loss of the Ark represented the decline of Israel: these sacred artifacts and spaces were essential to Israel’s presentation as a commanding nation, and their ruin was both an emblem and a cause of the state’s decay. Essentially, religious events and the spaces in which they allegedly occurred were used to build and legitimize the nation, and to support the power of its kings: above all, the creation of sacred space in Jerusalem was a powerful political force, the aim and result of which was to codify Israel’s authority as the authority of God Himself. The story of God’s promise to Abraham is possibly the basic foundation for thinking about Jerusalem and Israel as a sacred space, belonging by promised right to the Israelites and the House of David. The religious codification of Israel as the “Promised Land” begins in Genesis 22 in the story of the Binding of Isaac. Abraham agrees to sacrifice his own son Isaac in God’s name, but the angel of the Lord stops him before he makes the killing blow; as reward for his obedience, Abraham is promised great blessings and a strong nation for his descendants: Because you have done this, and have not withheld your son, your only son, I will indeed bless you, and I will make your offspring as numerous as the stars of heaven… And your offspring shall possess the gate of their enemies, and by your offspring shall all the 1
Image of page 2
Page nations of the earth gain blessing for themselves. ( New Oxford Annotated Bible , Gen. 22:15-18) In this passage, God is so pleased by Abraham’s self-sacrificing loyalty that he grants offspring “as numerous as the stars of heaven” (resulting in the tribes of Israel) and the conquest of all who stand in their way; furthermore, this passage posits that not only will Israel be blessed, but “all the nations of the earth” will gain blessing by extension. The political significance of this passage is twofold: first, the authorization of Israel’s ascendance; and second, the resultant exaltation of all other nations. This event occurs at “the land of Moriah,” which thus becomes religiously significant (Gen. 22:3); beyond the significance of God’s promise, great importance was accorded to the space in which it occurred. This relates to Eliade’s idea of sacred space as
Image of page 3

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Image of page 4
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern