Abraham: The First Monotheist?

Question

I heard some Reform rabbis say that Monotheism is the religious renovation of Ancient Jews. According to them, Abraham renovated ancient polytheistic religion to Monotheism. Monotheism is an invention of Jews, not the revealation of HaShem. Is it true? If Monotheism is merely a good idea of Abraham, there is no reason to believe in One God.

1 month

Answers

  1. Yes, you are absolutely correct. If Monotheism is merely good idea of Abraham, there is no reason to believe in One God. But that is not true. I have no idea what the Reform movement chooses to believe in nowadays, but they do not believe in the Divinity of the Torah, and, therefore, they have no compelling reason to believe in the theology of Monotheism. Although, it makes one wonder why they insist on claiming to follow the Jewish faith when they pay no attention to God’s Torah and His commandments.

    In any event, Monotheism was not created by Abraham. The concept of Monotheism is one that is an absolute tenet in Judaism and in the history of the world. Adam was created by God, and from Adam onward, the belief in Monotheism has been absolute.

    What made Abraham unique was that he did not believe in Monotheism through a chain of transmission that began with Adam. Abraham lived in Mesopotamia and he was completely geographically detached from the Monotheists that lived in his era. He had no contact with them and he did not even know of their existence. Abraham investigated nature and the concept of natural powers that others worshiped in his lifetime, and, due to his intense intellectual curiosity, he came first to the conclusion that there is no one power within nature that was any more god-like than any other power. After coming to the realization that nothing within nature was god he then started to explore the possibility of there being a Power that controlled all the disparate forces with nature. And that is what led him to a belief in One God, Who is the Controller and the Sustainer of the entire world.

    Best wishes from the AskTheRabbi.org Team