Yahweh did not originate in Sumer in any way. Yahweh actually started as a minor "warrior" deity in southern Canaan. El is the chief deity in
Canaan, but the word can also denote "god," (when placed before the name of one of the minor deities), it can also be used to denote various aspects
of the great god El. El created a "great host," with Yahweh as it's lead. Look up the Ebalite Texts, you'll see a proto-version of the
Judeo-Christian bible in the making.
Abraham left (fled) Ur when it fell, at the fall of Ur-Nammu and the 3rd Dynasty. He and his people had become the head of Sumer's religious order,
based in Nippur and Ur. Nippur was the "city of crossing," throughout Sumerian texts "crossing" had taken several religious meanings, his people
became the "people of the crossing." Terah's (Abraham's father) and Abraham's ancestry was eastern Semitic, most likely Ebalite. After leaving Ur
they fled west to the two cities still friendly to Eastern Semites of Sumer, first Mari and then Harran, bringing with them the vestiges of
Sumerian-Akkadian religion and a compendium of texts. They were viewed as VIPs, and greatly respected for their religious views. Eble and Eastern
Semite is the mother language of Hebrew.
At this point I think it's fair to say that the role of ancient Sumer is greatly overstated regarding the connection to biblical tales without
acknowledging the great influence Semites had in Sumer. Nippur, Ur, Abraham, the "Biblical tales" had really been much more a Western and Eastern
Semitic thing, and diffusion between Canaan/Levant and Mesopotamia mingled those religious ideas greatly.
We have to remember that the Sumerian spoken language died out relatively early in Sumer's history. By 2450 BC Sumerians were speaking Akkadian. The
Sumerian cuneiform script would only persist within the courts and temples, analogous to Latin in Middle Age Europe. The Sumerian/Akkadian empire was
also deeply fractured, between East and West, Ur belonging to the west and under greatest influence by the E. Semites (Terah). (confusing, no?) W.
Semites (Amorites) would eventually throw in with the eastern Sumerian half and found Babylon and worship Bel Marduk. Marduk is a much older, proper
Sumerian deity than the likes of El or Yahweh.
I'm greatly simplifying here, but the E. Semites (Terah's and Abraham's lineage) had lost favor in Sumer under a resurgent Sumerian movement that
was more aligned with W. Semites that would eventually found Babylon and drive them back to their roots in Ebla. Terah and Abraham saw Canaan as the
"promised land," and with their home in Ur gone, they set out to conquer the religious ideology of like-minded Semites in northern Canaan,
eventually consolidating everything into a monotheistic approach. "El," the supreme deity in Canaan was already becoming a monotheistic form of
worship, it was an idea whose time had come.
Diffusion was great between all the players in the ancient Near East. It extended beyond the borders of the Near East to Greece and Egypt. The
Canaanite El and his sons became the founding of the Greek pantheon. Certain Egyptians deities were based on their Sumerian counterparts. Weaving in
and out of this morass of origin tales was Zecharia Sitchin, stitching together his Ancient Alien narrative, cherry picking cuneiform texts and
bas-reliefs and cylinder seals with his own brand of interpretation to sell you a book.
For further research:
The Khedorlaomer Texts
: speak of the rebellion in the western Sumerian lands and a change in allegiance from Sin, patron deity of Ur, to Nabu,
a son of Marduk. When Ur-Nammu fell, the influence of the Eastern Semites (Terah and Abraham) was over.
The Ebla Tablets
from Tel Mardikh in northern Syria, excavated by Paolo Matthaie 1964-1975. 15,000 tablets in cuneiform were discovered in a
royal library. Most date to third century BCE and some as far back as Abraham. Several Bible place names, Ur, Sodom, Gomorrah, Haran, Lachish,
Jerusalem, Hazor, Megiddo, etc. and names such as Abraham, Israel, Esau, David and Micah were discovered in Ebalite, a Semitic language resembling
ancient Hebrew. The language origin of Hebrew is E. Semitic, possibly Ebla. The Patriarchs in the Bible viewed this region as the ancestral
The Zondervan Encyclopedia of the Bible, Volume 2
), Ebla's role in illuminating the Bible may be more
productive from the standpoint of language and vocabulary. Insofar as it's language, Eblaite, may be grouped within the W Semitic family of
languages, it remains one of the earliest of such languages yet discovered (however, some scholars believe that Ebalite should be identified as E
Semitic; see LANGUAGES OF THE ANE II). Linked with contemporary languages found in texts from Mari and N Babylonia, it may form the background for the
development of Biblical Hebrew. Ebla itself is found in N Syria, in the general region that the Genesis records suggest that the PATRIARCHS remembered
as the ancient homeland (Gen. 24:10-15; 28: 1-5), a view also expressed by many of the names in Abraham's geneology that can be associated with the
place names in the region (11: 10-32). (chapter continues...)
By now you're thinking what the hell does any of this have to do with debunking Sitchin or debunking his debunkers... suffice to say that Sitchin not
only badly interpreted Sumerian texts but also had to reinterpret Semitic and Hebrew tales to his liking, making it all appear derivative of Sumer or
rather, the "Annunaki."