It wasn’t meant to be a religion. It was and was meant to be a Way of life. A way of living.
The Hebrew people experienced their faith as a way of life. Their faith was the way they lived their lives. Responsibly to themselves and others. Morally as a matter of the soul living out its deepest values. Justly as the expression of the joining of sacred and human, heaven and earth, the kingdoms of the world as they mirrored the kingdom of God. Truthfully to the sacred design that defines each and every person as living into the fullness of one’s sacred humanity. Authentically as fidelity to who it knew itself to be, individuals with a heart and soul and interior disposition that found expression in the cultural and rituals as an expression of that way of life. With fidelity to their relationship to Being itself. A god who took his time to reveal his name. And when he did it was the revelation of a Way of being. With gratitude for their saving. And yes, struggling themselves to embody that good news and the promise of the sacred design that they were destined to be. That we are all destined to be. Their purpose was to grow in the awareness, understanding and expression of their relationship with one, Yahweh. Who called them beyond their wandering, nomadic lives and brought them to safety so that they might tell the word, spread the good news of a Living God, who was present and active in the world, in its creation and in its sustenance, to all the peoples of the earth. It was to be a faith that did not worship deities posing as stone, gold or wood. They were made a promise: they would become as numerous as the stars. They would be like stars charting the way for others in their dark night. They made a journey to the place of that promise. They made a journey that all people make. Theirs was a faith whose story became recorded in a Book. It was a way of being a people. It was a way of being a nation. It was a way of first and foremost being humanly sacred.
So when a Hebrew man arrived on the scene he would very succinctly say, I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. I am the Way to the Truth about Life.