The older records utilized by the Deuteronomic and later compilers indicate some common tradition which has found expression in these varying forms. Different religious standpoints are represented in the biblical writings, and it is now important to observe that the prophecies of Hosea unmistakably show another attitude to the Israelite priesthood.
Objections to the belief in immortality have been advanced from the standpoints of materialism, naturalism, pessimism and pantheism.
- The Old Testament preserves the remains of an extensive literature, representing different standpoints, which passed through several hands before it reached its present form.
A recollection of the manifold forms which religious life and thought have taken in Christendom or in Islam, and the passions which are so easily engendered among opposing sects, will prevent a one-sided estimate of the religious standpoints which the writings betray; and to the recognition that they represent lofty ideals it must be added that the great prophets, like all great thinkers, were in advance of their age.
An interest in the past is not necessarily confined to any one age, and the critical view that the biblical history has been compiled from relatively late standpoints finds support in the still later treatment of the events - in Chronicles as contrasted with Samuel-Kings or in Jubilees as contrasted with Genesis.'