The costly cult statue was stolen by Antiochos IV Epiphanes (175 – 164 BC) when he plundered the temple in Jerusalem in 169 BC

Nineveh, ancient statue
Nineveh, ancient statue

on his return from his second Egyptian campaign: Josephus CA II, 7. The cult statue was clearly never replaced, so that from then on, Yahweh was worshipped without a statue.

The contact with Hellenistic philosophy that was critical of animal cults was probably the reason why the cult statue was never replaced.


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