Ideas of Paul Johnson, by Theme

[British, fl. 1987, Journalist and historian.]

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24. Political Theory / D. Ideologies / 10. Theocracy
In Mosaic legal theory, crimes are sins and sins are crimes
Because human life is what is sacred, Mosaic law has no death penalty for property violations
25. Social Practice / A. Freedoms / 1. Slavery
The Pharisees undermined slavery, by giving slaves responsibility and status in law courts
25. Social Practice / B. Equalities / 3. Legal equality
Mosaic law was the first to embody the rule of law, and equality before the law
25. Social Practice / F. Life Issues / 1. Causing Death
Man's life is sacred, because it is made in God's image
29. Religion / A. Polytheistic Religion / 2. Greek Polytheism
The Jews sharply distinguish human and divine, but the Greeks pull them closer together
29. Religion / B. Monotheistic Religion / 2. Judaism
A key moment is the idea of a single moral God, who imposes his morality on humanity
Sampson illustrates the idea that religious heroes often begin as outlaws and semi-criminals
Isaiah moved Israelite religion away from the local, onto a more universal plane
The Torah pre-existed creation, and was its blueprint
Judaism involves circumcision, Sabbath, Passover, Pentecost, Tabernacles, New Year, and Atonement
In exile the Jews became a nomocracy
29. Religion / B. Monotheistic Religion / 3. Zoroastrianism
Zoroastrians believed in one eternal beneficent being, Creator through the holy spirit
29. Religion / D. Religious Issues / 2. Immortality / a. Immortality
Immortality based on judgement of merit was developed by the Egyptians (not the Jews)
The main doctrine of the Pharisees was belief in resurrection and the afterlife
29. Religion / D. Religious Issues / 2. Immortality / d. Heaven
Pious Jews saw heaven as a vast library