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Four stages of growth in God

The people of Israel went through four stages of growth in their understanding of God. In the first stage they worshipped many gods along with the worship of Yahweh the God of Israel.

Four stages of growth in God

By Fr. Robert D’Souza
The people of Israel went through four stages of growth in their understanding of God. In the first stage they worshipped many gods along with the worship of Yahweh the God of Israel.

This is popularly known as Polytheism. In the second stage they began to worship only Yahweh but the belief in other gods did not disappear from their life. This is stage is known as Henotheism.

In the third stage they began to consider Yahweh as the supreme God, a God above all other gods. This is known as Monolatry. Here again the belief in other gods continued to exist.

Finally, they came to the level of Monotheism where they considered Yahweh as the only God. The other gods were not gods at all. It is against this background that we have to understand why they were prohibited from worshipping the idols.

Jesus went still further to show that he is the same God as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and that the Father and he are one.

In which of the above stages do I see myself? Do I believe in one God with three persons? How is it reflected in my life?

(A prolific writer Fr. Dr. Robert Baptist D’souza has been a perspicacious translator for years including the translation of the voluminous Catechism of the Catholic Church. He translated the 16 sticker books of the Living in Faith to Marathi and is busy translating the Bible into the same language. He belongs to the diocese of Vasai and is the director of the pastoral centre.)

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