Hammurabi and Moses

The world behind and beyond the Bible is fascinating. Take the Code of Hammurabi, a set of over two hundred moral laws written on a stone stele in about 1772 BCEHammurabi was the sixth Babylonian king and, luckily for us, felt the need to inscribe his laws on something really durable.

According to the Wikipedia page on the code, it is one of the earliest known examples of a set of related laws used in that part of the world. An even earlier code, the Code of Ur-Nammu, contains prohibitions against murder, theft, kidnapping, adultery, and bearing false witness, among others. The Hammurabi code, meanwhile, introduces the concept of an “eye for an eye” (law 196) and a “tooth for a tooth” (law 200).  

The Mosaic law, which includes the above-mentioned excerpts of older laws, appeared approximately five centuries after the Hammurabi code. 

As the Bible itself says, there is nothing new under the sun!


One Response to Hammurabi and Moses

  1. L.Long says:

    What I find interesting is that the xtians and islames all go on & on about their high morals from the buyBull. Yet as you show there is NOTHING unique about their rules…except the gawd ones.
    But part of what makes xtians or jews really different are the 213 commandment that show some what better rules that are totally ignored except for the hateful bigoted leviticus ones. As an example when a farmer has a field of say apples and someone is hungry according one of those ignored 213 the hungry guy can eat the apples but cannot remove the apples those the farmer is helping the poor & hungry but the poor cannot just steal the apples.
    But the xtians will say that many of those help people rules cannot be done in our changed and modern society, well except for the hateful bigoted leviticus ones.
    As others (like you) have pointed out anything good in the buyBull or KaKaran is found most every else too, were the hateful bigoted stuff is highly variable.

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