It wasn't likely that Israel was going to develop an archetectural style from scratch.
Right. Many good points there! And no culture developed in a vacuum. (Even Egypt had a beginning, and was influenced by neighboring cultures, BTW...)
I think that it is not such a terrible thing to assert that God used concepts that were already around the Hebrews/Jews. The 10 commandments is written in a style common to contracts made between vassals and rulers. Even Abraham, when he made a sacrifice on an altar, had learned these concepts from the culture in which he grew up; he did not create them himself.
The assumption that every concept/style originated with Biblical authors or characters is not true. It shakes the beliefs of some folks, but if you turn the telescope around and look thru the other end, you see other kinds of truth entirely.
For one thing, you see that God has placed truths in each culture as pegs, spots where He could hang the gospel. Sacrifice is a commonly understood idea thru out all races, for example, as men entreaty their god(s) for some favor. Certain places are designated as being holier/sacred than others. Certain writings and traditions are given prominence. Certain events get celebrated. What is right/clean/good are concepts that, tho' there can be disagreements, everyone understands.
For another thing, you see that God is being very kind and gracious, respecting the cultures of men. He is not the angry, fascist Jehovah of the WT. He stoops down to speak with us in the places where we are at, in this moment; not creating a "perfect culture" (a pure language??), demanding that we must join--or else. God has such divine humility. It is a relief to think that God doesn't automatically reject everything that man creates. He is a lot more relaxed about "form" than you've heard. And culture is a "form" for expression.
So, I believe there are universal concepts that all races can understand, and that God used a particular primitive one, that had influence from a more advanced one, to reveal Himself. He pulled from what was around to communicate, and revealed Himself in new ways as well. Is that scandalous? I don't think so. It does means that folks who built their theology on the foundation that "Israel was going to develop an archetectural style/theology/culture from scratch" are going to be shaken.
BTW, in Christian missions, as opposed to JW missions, the missionary looks for the truths and concepts that are already there in the culture. This is called 'contextualization'. Is this culture similar to the OT culture, or do they have well-developed sciences? Who are their gods/demons? How effective is their god(s)? How do the people deal with shame and/or guilt? What kind of truths do their writings/rituals reveal? What stories do they tell? What is important? What are their symbols? Etc. etc.
It is not necessary to reinvent the whole culture, but within the new culture, working just with what they already have, it is possible to adapt their cultural stories/symbols and contextualize the gospel to them. It is a rather interesting field, actually, combining all the social sciences with communication.
Of course, this is why JWs feel superior to Christians, as they refuse to deal with anything "pagan", and won't touch Christmas or Easter or birthdays or.. or... or... Bad news, guys: so much of what is part of our everyday life comes from odd places (but you all already knew that!) .
Anyway, I think God has already shown that He was willing to contextualize personally, by putting the sacred Word into the vulgar human context. Incarnation.
Well, this was a 'quick' agreement with gitasatsangha that got waaaay out of hand...