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Case Study in Flawed Dating of Exodus

Intra-page links: | Wrong Questions get wrong answers | Check Bible: Sources, relevant Pharaonic data, Methodology| | Check Bible: alerts scholars should notice | | A for Avoidance: why is the most venerated Pharaonic line.. defaced?| | B for Baptism: Why is the "mose" moniker, unique to that same dynasty, blotted out?| | C for Changed Names: why change god names? | | D for Destroy pantheon: Why Akhenaton? | | E for Eclipsed reign: Why only 9 campaigns for Amenhotep II? | | F for Foul Play: why Neferure's early death? And maybe Hatshepsut's? | | G for God's Consistent Dating: why ignore Bible, when it's consistent? | | H for Historical 'fit' from Joseph forward, #1: Hatshepsut's Barren Dilemma | | Chrono, H#2-4, backgrounder on Israel in Egypt | | H#5-6, Hat's Solution | | H#7-10, Hat's Precedenting Usurpation (using Moses) | | H#11-12, Moses under Hat thru her death | | H#13-15, Moses abdicates |  | H#16-17, 'other' Thutmose III comes to power |  | H#18-21, Amenhotep II | | H#22-end, Aftermath (decline of Egypt) |


Apologies up front: the first few sections of this webpage are decidedly acerbic, for which I apologize. So maybe just skim the content until you get to "Historical 'fit'" intra-page link #H, which takes you through the history from Joseph's time, forward.

God has an Accounting System for Time that is always used every time He dates something anywhere in Bible, and by that system, you get an absolute chronology from Adam through Christ. But no one seems to have used it. So there's this incredible divergence over the Exodus Date, and all of the divergence just ignores what Bible has to say. Truly. It's shocking, since a whole lot of time and effort has gone into trying to date the Exodus by Bible-lovers and Bible-haters, alike.

Upshot: per Bible, Exodus was 1440BC. God Accounts the 1440BC date all the way back to Adam under His Accounting System, for God treats time like a balance sheet, principle of Dan9:25-26; and, He tracks all the way forward to the present day with the same 490-year (non-intercalated) or 560-year (intercalated) benchmarks.

The Problem: Wrong Questions asked of or Not Checking, Bible!

It's an old lawyer's or politician's trick to "prove" what one wants to prove by asking and answering the wrong questions. Deflects attention away from the right questions, gets the listener to agree with the opinion one wants 'bought' by answers given which -- of course -- discredit the object of such questions. Just turn on CSPAN during a committee hearing, or go to any trial, see how it plays. Research that slants will likewise ask and answer the wrong questions to get the conclusions, it wants. The layman usually doesn't have the wherewithal to vet accuracy, so if the story sounds cohesive, seems sprinkled with enough facts and the researcher looks respectable, hey -- it was on TV, so it must be true. Yeah, right. Please, then -- test what you read here. Clearly, I'm convinced of a certain answer. Test what you read, see if the right questions and answers are handled, k?

So when it comes to the dating of the Exodus, don't be surprised to find that the wrong questions are asked there, too; so no 'proof' is deemed found. Yeah, if your keys are in the glove box and you insist on searching in the trashcan, you won't find the keys. You'll find in your researches that a whole lot of respectable folks routinely assign the wrong dates to the Exodus, and have done so for generations. Of course, then any searches for confirming data will be in the wrong time period, so nothing will be found. Then, oh! the Exodus didn't happen! Yeah, not then it didn't. Using the Bible's own system of dating, the Exodus happened 1440BC. We can date it accurately, because the Bible timeline begins its count of Israel the nation based on Exodus as its Birthdate. The page top link, "Dan 9 Timeline" will acquaint you with the structure, and the many independently determined dates in history that tie to the Biblical dates via its timeline system.

Scholars know that Egyptian Pharaohs practiced a whitewashed version of their history for posterity in all those buildings; it was common as far back as Thutmose III, that a Pharaoh would deface another Pharaoh's monument to make his own accomplishments, look better; or, to wipe out a disliked ruler. The Ramses line of Pharaohs were the worst offenders, here.

So it always amazes me that Folks Don't Check The Bible To Test Historical Accuracy. The prejudice against it, really shows. Prejudice is bad scholarship. Like the Bible, hate the Bible, whatever, that's a private prerogative. Doesn't add to my belief or anyone else's, if there's agreement God is God of Bible. Believe or not, whatever -- but let's not pretend objectivity, by being hostile to it, by giving it a slipshod glance, and then call ourselves "scientist" or "scholar", afterwards: we'll get egg on our face, every time. Look: even if one didn't believe Bible was Divine, it's a historical book. Other historical books are checked and compared against, routinely -- many religious texts and stones, stelae, like all the Egyptian monuments, all of them religious -- oh, their timelines and data are accepted. But not the Bible?

The Solution? Check With Bible; Then You Know Where To Look IN History

God is not so petty or wasteful to retaliate against our prejudices against Him. Instead, He graces us all out, no matter how prejudiced against Him we ALL are (no exceptions, it's in the genes). Watch how Bible's dating corrects the centuries' off error of typical scholarship. Gee, God really can count.

Source Material Used for this webpage: Pharaonic dates and biographical data below only come from my 1985 set of Encyclopedia Britannica, hereafter abbreviated to "EB". On the internet, there's sooo much variation on Biblically-significant Pharaohs, a reader goes crazy: even the "Encyclopedia of the Orient" has in its dogpile description, that Amenhotep II reigned from 1450-1424BC, like my set of EB says -- but when you click on the Orient's link, you see text which changes his reign to "1427-1400" BC! Another link wipes out even Hatshepsut's reign, putting Amenhotep II in her place, killing him off at 1482BC! Worse, www.britannica.com changes his reign to "1426-1400BC". All the other dates of the Pharaohs are changed, too! What happened to scholarship since 1985? Downright weird, what's sometimes on the internet. So I'm only using my 1985 set of EB for Pharaonic dates, because it makes sense, versus what else is out there. [Particular reigns were from the Macropedia abstracts; the main EB article titled "Egypt, History of" was used as well.]

The regnal years' listing below was mainstream in 1985 and (largely) in prior years. But the Bible's information 'suits' those years, as you'll see by the time you finish this page. The same information in BIBLE might suit other regnal configurations, too, I don't know. This is what I'm using, to show the method.

Bible doesn't say the names of the Pharaohs, generally; no names are given for Pharaohs related to Joseph or the Exodus. Now I know why: God foreknew there would be so much confusion! So you go by what happened during those YEARS, and whoever the Pharaoh really was, that's the guy! Still looks like the EB dating is the most sensible. So here's what my set of EB lists as the reigns of the relevant Pharaohs:

A few websites seem to brainstorm this problem of widely divergent Pharaonic dates. I didn't use their information to write this page, and it appears they would all disagree with this page's Pharaonic identities. Thinking impresses me, right or wrong. Better to be wrong but thinking, than right with the brain off, 1Jn1:8-10. So whether these sites are right or wrong, is irrelevant. Again, this is about method, which requires thinking. So you might enjoy brainstorming or railing at these sites:
Apparently the current disputation over Pharaonic regnal dates centers on the so-called "Sothic" method. Egyptians dated based on the stars, and left records. So that's an alternative method of validation people use, since the Pharaohs so routinely 'alter' past Pharaohs' monuments to claim as their own. So the "Sothic" method used is now claimed to be off by as much as 50+ years. The above links from knowledge.co.uk/sis, Master's Thesis, and that Egyptian astronomer, provide detail. How accurate they are, I've no idea.

So dates related to Exodus and Israel for this page (and Mirroring.htm), come only from the Bible's dating system; I don't trust or use any other source. If I can't tally some independently derived date to Bible, then the independent date is wrong. So you'll be able to prove it wrong, independently. But maybe not, immediately. Again, God's Dating System proofs the dates for you, so you can catch errors. Mirroring.htm#Joseph extensively covers the Exodus-related Bible verses and dates, starting with the ENTRY into Egypt, mostly in its "Joseph" link.

Given what Bible says and what historical facts we have, the following 'hints' should have alerted scholars where to look in history for the right Exodus date:

  1. The 18th Dynasty of Egypt (c.1570-1362BC) was a kind of golden age; consolidation of empire due to freedom from invaders (chiefly the Hyksos, Asiatics). So why is it repudiated by its own progeny? "Pharaoh" was the title of the king's house, not the king himself, until this Dynasty came along. Meaning, this dynasty became the standard of what being "Pharaoh" as a person, should mean. No longer just a place. [Looks like some historians stop the line at Amenhotep III, so the end date in that case would be 1379. Last 18th Dynasty Pharaoh, technically, was Horemheb. At his death in 1320, Ramses I, a nonroyal, friend and fellow military man, was Horemheb's adopted successor.]

  2. So how did scholars miss the fact that the Nile was considered the Giver of Life, so the name "Moses", which is NOT a Hebrew name, was part of an Egyptian Pharaonic name, starting even before Thutmose I, with Kamose, the father of Ahmose I, the founder of the dynasty? Since the founder of the Dynasty was AhMOSE I, the guy who drove out the Hyksos the first time, and extended hegemony as far north as Syria, and as far south as Nubia, consolidating the kingdom again? His son was Amenhotep I, because Ahmose's wife was Ah-hotep (aka Ahmose-Nofretari). It's a concatenated name, the son's. Both Ahmose and his wife were full-blooded brother and sister. Their son Amenhotep I, therefore, was sterile -- and apparently had married his full-blooded sister.

    So, his son by adoption was Thutmose I, a general of his staff who was unrelated; the latter married Amenhotep's widow ("God's Wife") Ahmose upon Amenhotep's death. Followed by, Thutmose II, III. The latter was supposed to be Egypt's greatest Pharaoh, per EB.

  3. So note how unusual, the name change to "Amenhotep II", when he comes to power on his dad's (Thutmose III's) death, 1450BC; Pharaohs only change names to hide dishonor in their parents' reigns. The Egyptians were a very superstitious people, keen on omens and sounds. So names were deemed to have power. So to CHANGE the name is to reflect a Change of Power -- so the old name is no longer in favor with the gods. It's a way of saying the past is over, disavowing it; for the good times are ahead. Kinda like a warding off bad luck, too -- if the prior reign wasn't popular. (For example, who after 1945 would allow himself to have a surname of Hitler?) What would be shameful or 'bad omen' about retaining the name of Egypt's greatest Pharaoh, hmmm?

  4. Note also how the Thutmose name is reclaimed but then quickly dies out with the short reign of Thutmose IV. Amenhotep II was between Thutmose III and Thutmose IV. Thutmose IV's son will again change the name back -- as if ashamed of his dad's time -- to become Amenhotep III; and his son will be crowned Amenhotep IV, but will (c.1373) change his NAME to the infamous Akhenaton -- he's the guy who tried to make Egypt go monotheistic, moved his capital, neglected his country, all hung up on this one-god thingy. Very unpopular move. Very disastrous reign. End of 18th dynasty, for all intents and purposes, c.1362. No Pharaoh is afterwards named for ANY of the preceding ones.

    Hmmm. Seems like something's going on, here. One generation repudiates the Thutmose house, another reclaims it, and the last of the line, goes wacko over monotheism -- all a good century+ before the usual dates given for the Exodus by scholars. What happened? Weren't the scholars alerted by these odd facts? Nothing fits the Ramses data, that scholars should date Moses with Ramses II. The closest 'logic' I could find goes back to the days of the Ottoman Empire, when some scholar then concluded that because Ramses was so successful, surely Moses was born then. Yeah. Then, there was another who, looking at Akhenaton, decided that the monotheism was influenced by Moses, so surely Moses came before that. Yeah, but didn't anyone just ask Bible? [I don't want to name the names of these folks, just point out the errors, since they are typical of the genre. Speculation by a hoary head becomes a cast-in-stone 'truth' by later scholars, who don't vet the hoary head, since it was a hoary head. Making gods out of people dishonors even the people, let alone God Himself.]

  5. Yet the empirical clues for Amenhotep II, were there for the taking. Scholars are reasonably sure that Thutmose III (Moses' younger rival by Thutmose II and a concubine), defaced his stepmother Hatshepsut's monuments. That's what you do to hide something. EB article on Hatshepsut says that archeologists were able to "firmly establish" that the defacing occurred at/toward the end of the Thutmose III's reign -- which of course, could well be just after Thutmose III died, especially if the son of Thutmose III, didn't even name himself after his own father. Defacement cost laborers and money, and it would be sacrilege -- unless, of course, ordered by a Pharaoh. This is distinct from vandalism. Defacement is like deliberate tampering to cover up something. Much of Hatshepsut's monuments survived, too.

    As will be repeated later in this page, Amenhotep II only had 9 annual campaigns of his own. So if he came to power in 1450BC, then his rule ended at the Exodus, one way or another. It makes sense that either the concubine's son or Amenhotep II -- or even Thutmose IV -- would be keen on defacing a Moses. If what the Bible says is true, Moses shamed Egypt twice: first, by abdicating; and then by shaming the current Pharaoh directly. A HEBREW slave boy put on the throne by a woman! Too much shame, to tolerate.

    See a video on Discovery or History channel about how the Ramses did it, to get the idea. The Ramses were real keen on expunging any past Pharaohs who would dishonor their lineage; moreover, it was common to just tack ON to a 'good' pharaoh's reign, the years of some successor who was not so good. That practice was not without precedent, which scholars know. So why didn't anyone clue into the unusual nature of this Thutmose III, and ask gee, were there two of them? Plenty of reason to suspect it, especially since they know defacement occurred; since they know one of the temples of Thutmose did tack on years that belonged to Hatshepsut's so-called regency period (first 22 years).

  6. Then there's the question of whether Hatshepsut died naturally, or by violence. Her daughter wasn't married to 'Thutmose III' very long, and died before the mother did. Suspicious, don't you think? Neferure would have been a "God's Wife" heiress, whose allegiance would be critical to Egyptian stability; her death would be a bad omen. Granted, there is a lot one doesn't really know -- but all these odd facts should have engendered deeper inquiry, rather than blithely skipping over 100-200 years to a Ramses.

  7. So why didn't scholars begin to wonder the logical thing -- that Moses was the "Thutmose III" who conquered the Hyksos in Hatshepsut's name, etc? Especially since per Bible, 1440BC is the date for the Exodus: you can back into it from 1Kings 6:1, Daniel 9:25-26, Acts 13:20, many other verses which use God's 490-year Time Accounting System. Bible's timeline is based on the Exodus date, the Nation Israel's reckoned Birthdate (see Exo12); the year YHWH became King of that Nation. Kinda like America's 7/4/1776. So Bible renders its calendar in terms of "x" years FROM the Exodus: a common practice in ancient times, to date years from some important event or ruler, as a calendar. Which, if you use that dating system, tracks to all the other main dates we know: the year First (Solomon's) Temple was built, year First Temple was destroyed, the year scholars (but not Bible) claim Xerxes' Decree to Rebuild went out, the year the 2nd Temple was finished, the year Messiah was actually born -- the latter three of which were predicted by the timeline well before any of the events occurred. (And since Judaism doesn't believe in Christ, it would have no motive to manipulate the Dan 9 Masoretic text to prove it predicted exactly the year Messiah Was Born.) Hmmm. Pretty accurate, since we use an independent (and secular-based) dating system to determine those other events, extra-Biblically.

  8. So of course there will be no Egyptian record of the Exodus, which was a shame to Egypt, which actually occurred in the reign of Amenhotep II, Thutmose III's son.

Let's take a trip back in time, and reconstruct the historical chronology.

  1. The intended Thutmose III, Moses, was born in 1520BC, if we use the Bible's timeline (verses cited below). During a time of persecution of the Hebrews by Thutmose I (1525-1512BC), this Hebrew baby floats in the Nile to be discovered by the daughter of that persecuting Pharaoh -- Hatshepsut -- who herself, is barren of male heirs. Significantly, Exodus 1:15's Hebrew says a melek (NOT "pharaoh" -- Bible Hebrew and Greek transliterate 'pharaoh') proposed and got acceptance of the persecution. Verses 16-17 show that the command wasn't carried out, so there must have been a lot of Egyptian sympathy for the Hebrews on this topic. So maybe Thutmose I didn't want it, but politically had to sanction it, since one of his lower officials had ordered it (maybe on his own initiative). It's likewise significant that Exo1:22 suddenly says now it's Pharaoh who commands the boy babies be thrown in the Nile. Idea that if they survive, the gods must have wanted it, see. Heh: perfect setup and justification for accepting a baby who does NOT die -- the god is then Blessing that Baby. Well: if the god blesses that baby, then surely it's not wrong for Pharaoh to take that baby. Even, Pharaoh's daughter.

  2. So you can get the right contextual background for Hatshepsut's situation in 1520BC, some 'scholarly' myths about slavery and the nature of Israel's slavery, must be exposed. First, slavery in the ancient world was not the same as what we today call "slavery"; but was often a form of employment, and often for a fixed number of years. You had several ways to become a slave: 1) you were booty, the people of a defeated people in a battle; 2) you were in debt, and wanted to work your way out; 3) you'd committed some crime or other offense and had to work it off; 4) you CHOSE to become a slave for whatever other reason (i.e., you wanted to honor the son of a father, by becoming his slave; you were in love with a slave girl and wanted to marry her, many categories of reasons, all of them voluntary). Frankly, slavery was something people sought to get a better life, especially if you could be a domestic slave to someone rich and important. Surely all the history of Roman slavery should clue someone in to that fact. Romans (and others) had this ceremony where the slave could choose to be a slave for life (hence even that late in history, slavery was not typically life long): the master would back the slave against a wall, stick an awl through the slave's earlobe. The slave then wore an earring in the hole, as a token of his lifelong devotion and subservience. Family of the slave usually participated, too.

    1. Re the nature of Israel's slavery: they were Temple Building slaves, not agricultural slaves. So Bible tells you that (i.e., Exo1:8ff); and you can prove from abundant archeological evidence that in Egypt, slavery was BUILDING related. (Nice of God to plan Temple Building in advance by building the building skills in His people.) So to reject the possibility of the Exodus on the grounds that Egypt's arable land was too small for a slave population that large, is stupid. Of course, others reject the Exodus on the grounds that the Egyptians didn't use slave labor for agriculture. Both of them, ignoring the fact that the Bible never says they were agricultural slaves, in the first place. Worse, such claims ignore the fact that Egypt was the BREADBASKET for the Middle East during famines. So very obviously, it produced more food, than its population needed! See how prejudiced against BIBLE, the 'scholars' are? On the one hand acknowledging Egypt's greatness and expanse, and then when convenient, denying it to deny Bible?

      Yeah, and worse -- since slavery in modern times was largely agricultural, the debunkers ASSume that any slavery is agricultural, and then project their false ideas on the Bible. Without reading it, of course. That's bad scholarship, k? [They do the same thing with Genesis -- God never depicts Adam as a hunter-gatherer or meat-eater, but a taxonomist; nor is Cain a meat eater, but a farmer and a city-builder. So are the other kids. But that stops no one from calling the Bible a liar because it accounts Adam's Fall back to 4106 BC (see GeneYrs.xls for the Bible chronology, test it yourself).]

      Ask wrong questions, get wrong answers! Bible is real clear on the nature of the Hebrew slavery and why it happened, saying they were involved in agriculture before the enslavement, living in Lower (northern) Egypt, around the Delta area, Gen 47:6. But when they were enslaved beginning in the reign of Amenemhet III, they were enslaved as BUILDERS, to take away the land from them, since "Goshen" was some of the most fertile land in Egypt, Gen47:6, Exo1:8, :11, 8:22.

      Which is what happened under Amenemhet III, one of Egypt's famous 'builder' Pharaohs, per EB; though of course EB mentions nothing about the Hebrews being there. Note the tactic well: by making them BUILDING slaves on their own land, they are effectively disenfranchised from that land, in the name of building STORAGE cities on the same ground. Not too hard to do: 'the people' need storage against any future famine! For famine was common, and everyone knew to go to Egypt during a famine. And of course you need the storage near where you grow the crops. So, kinda like today's tactic: Government announces it's building a freeway, to reduce congestion 'for the people'; and oh, by the way -- it's gonna go right through your house! Government thus offers you some pittance to 'compensate' you for the house; but of course two seconds after the news is out, your house is utterly worthless to any other buyer. Not sure that's the tactic which Amenemhet used; Hitler did much the same thing to the Jews long before the attacks against them escalated to the smash-window genre. Thus you see the kind of creeping or sudden trickery which can be played on someone, to look like 'freedom' which is slavery. Governments are masters at this trickery, past or present. It's Satan's world, see.

      Yeah, and God still gives Grace! For had Goshen not been 'converted' like this, by the time the locust plague hit Egypt (Exo 10), there was no food anywhere to be had, no livestock. Only Goshen -- with its storage cities intact, presumably -- was spared. Compare what Pharaoh wants in Exo10:8, versus 10:24. By v.24, he doesn't want hostages, he wants FOOD. Blessing by association, baby. We curse Him, He blesses us. Preview of coming attractions: Revelation (seventh-seal) Trib plagues are patterned after the Exodus plagues, so the world cannot mistake Who is doing them. Check it out for yourself.

      Yet the weird contention by some among the world's 'scholars' who debunk the Exodus: they wrongly define Israel's slavery as agricultural; of course that's not the kind of slavery Egypt practiced, so lo! Israel wasn't there! Can you imagine, this fake-lawyer trick of 'scholarship' is 'respectable'? My 1985 EB has that claim; I've seen it from time to time in documentaries, too; you'll find it on the internet: too embarrassing to name the names of these 'scholars'. For everyone knows from the Book of Exodus (or even the "Ten Commandments" movie), that the sons of Jacob (aka Jews aka Israel) were enslaved in Egyptian building projects, from which comes the aphorism about making bricks without straw. Everyone can know that Amenemhet III was a nut for building projects, as indeed every Pharaoh was. Cain went out and built a city, and so the building idea being associated with greatness, is as old as Cain (see Genesis 4 account). In Egypt, that building idea represented its preoccupation with death -- and hence its obsession to appease the gods. These are common facts. But if you ask the wrong questions, you can ignore the right facts.

    2. Re the places of Israel's enslavement building: similarity of 19th-dynasty names to the cities shows the cities are older, not contemporaneous. Exo1:11 dispels the stupid idea that the city of Ramses was built during the Ramses (19th dynasty, 1300's BC). For the very name "Ramses" is far older than that, as is the name of Atun: both terms are related to "Ra", the chief god in Egyptian mythology. So Ra+moses=born from the god Ra, who is depicted very much like the Holy Spirit in the Hebrew of Gen1:2. Makes one think that God is tweaking the Egyptians, therefore, using Moses' pen. For in Gen1:2, the Hebrew name for the Holy Spirit is Ruah-Elohim (easily truncated to "Ra"), and He is depicted as a mother hen brooding over its 'chicks' -- in this case, the water. Egyptian creation myth depicts "Ra" coming out of an egg and hovering over the water (i.e., in Encarta and elsewhere). Now the 'kiddies' per Egyptian mythology, much like in Greek mythology, warred: Horus and Set (similar to Cain and Seth, looks like).

        As you can see, the modern-day description of God as this Egg thingy (three-in-one, what a crock) has a long prior history. Deriving from a truth everyone knew at the beginning, which was in the beginning, the Holy Spirit restored a flooded planet, preparatory to making mankind. But not until Moses was that True Account, put in writing as a Permanent Deposition from Triune but not hydra-headed, God. [Lots of ideas lately on how this 'naturally' might have happened, from Pangea -- posited as millions of years ago, though tectonics can be fast as well as slow; to, the idea that Saturn turned nova and hence the planet was deluged between 5,000 and 10,000 years ago. Then there's the simple idea that Gen1:2 describes an interglacial period. All of these ideas make some sense; but Bible doesn't claim natural phenomena. Instead, it flat says the Holy Spirit just ordered the change: God speaks, and a thing is. The atheist always wants God to be circumscribed to natural phenomena to justify belief, thus creating a tautology that God only exists if He can't act like God. Then, we dumb-bunny Christians all scurry to find a 'natural' explanation. Why? Hello, God by definition is Supernatural, k?]

      Egypt was first united by means of its eclectic religion, which religion itself was a patchwork from many local versions, morphing into a single fabric over time. But this unity was the basis for all the building projects. So again, the practice of Egyptian cities built in honor of Ra and the other gods, is a whole lot older than even the 12th Dynasty: it goes back to the 3rd Dynasty (Imhotep, under Djoser), or even earlier (EB seems to credit it under the 1st Dynasty). According to Encarta's article on Egyptian mythology, "[d]uring the 5th Dynasty the pharaohs began to claim divine ancestry and from that time on were worshiped as sons of Ra." So, see: cities named Ramses began long before the 19th dynasty. Didn't take much reading, to find that quote. Didn't take much reading in BibleWorks to find that "Pit-hum" means "house of Atun" (BDB), and "Ra'meses" as just noted, means "born of Ra". Nice way to get the gods to bless and protect those storage cities. [That the later Ramses used those cities as royal dwellings is beside the point. You'd think the lexicographers would take some pains to notice that Ra is earlier than the 19th dynasty Ramses line, who after all called themselves "Ramses" to claim the god's patronage. Oh well.]

      You see something of these same trends in Greece (etc.) circa 3000 BC, and perhaps this trend in Egypt is due to the Greeks then, for there are many similarities between the two cultures and their religious stories. Bear in mind that Methusaleh was born circa 3419BC per Bible's Gen5 chronology (see GeneYrs.xls), so the world was on red alert that the Flood was coming (Methu+saleh= "when he dies, destruction comes"). So you'd expect much apostacy worldwide, and you'd expect it to have the same character. Moreover, often in history the Greeks roamed and caused trouble; the people thus attacked, united. So here in Egypt, their native rulers were considered caretakers for the gods, and had at least quasi-pontificatory status. So they regarded themselves as the on-earth priestly nation for the gods; hence each city was supposed to be patronized by a god. So building was a way of honoring the god. So it was a big deal. So in all those cities, archeological excavations near the building projects show large populations of slaves lived nearby; and you can find them long before the 1300's BC. You won't find anything of Jewish cultural character, since there was no Jewish culture until after the Exodus. So they'd look, dress, act Egyptian (witness how the daughters of Jethro first described Moses as "Egyptian", Exo2:19).

      After 400 years, things morph. So the Egyptian religion and culture by the 1500's would be much more a mixture of the many times the Hebrews had talked of The Real God, and the Egyptian pantheon. So for that reason also, you won't find anything of distinctly Jewish character. The Law had not yet come.

      There are no Ramses pharaohs until the 19th dynasty, and the very name smacks of aping Hatshepsut's ruse to hold power (covered below, #9). Yet Ra is the head god in the pantheon; so obviously the cities are older, and the reason earlier Pharaohs took the names of lesser gods, was in honor of Ra. But yet another clue to the real Exodus is here; for as time passes, especially after Amenhotep II, the need to take higher names, rejecting the older ones, reaches a climax in Akhenaton (Ra=Aton), so the Exodus had to happen before he even reigned. It's logical that once a Pharaoh takes the highest name, if a later one opts for a lower name, the next guy will make up for that sleight and go back.. hence Ramses is later, not earlier. So the definition of what 'honors', began with the idea one should take a lower name; but ends in reverse, with the idea one takes the same name; that reversal happened due to the Exodus. For that's the first time THE God the Highest calls His People "Israel"="Prince of God" -- by His Own Name. That was new. New to Israel, which didn't exist until then; new to the Egyptians, and new to everyone else. Trace how people name themselves from the Exodus forward, versus prior. Big change: Jewish names end with -el from that time forward. Other cultures aped that idea, too. Notice how the angels have that suffix, as well. But the people before this time, didn't.

      Akhenaton made a shrewd political move to content a populus, as well as to sideline, marginalize the power of the many Egyptian priesthoods; it's a lot like Henry VIII's break with the Catholic Church, in that sense. Egypt from the beginning was a political patchwork, as most gradually-uniting large polities are; fiefdoms of many kinds -- especially the religious ones -- are only defeated long-term if you can cultivate the masses to support you directly. So Akhenaton capitalized on his high status religiously, to serve political ends. By inventing a new priesthood using the long-standing belief in Ra, all the lesser gods worshipped -- and their priesthoods -- are sidelined. Yet, tradition remains. So this switch tells you that Egypt was in religious ferment at the time; else he couldn't have made such a switch.

      Further, this development of Aton (nee: Ra) was designed to counter and compete with, not conform to, Israel's God: precisely because Atun is only One. For Israel's God is Three, not One: Father, Son, Spirit. So Akhenaton is shrewd to newly claim monotheism, thus marginalizing both the Egyptian priesthoods and remembrance of Israel's Godhead. Akhenaton's attempt backfired, and would be repudiated (priesthoods like their power); but so long as he was alive, he had some success.

        Bible is Tri-Theistic, not monotheistic, and in OT it's constantly shown by wordplay in the original languages which doesn't translate well in English. Spirit was the cloud and the pillar, Isaiah 63:11. Father is in the Ab wordplay, and Son is the Firstborn. Isa63 is a panoramic summary of how Trinity protected Israel from her birth to the Millenium. It was written later than the Exodus, of course; but it refers back to the Exodus, depicting how the Trinity delivered Israel at that time. Wordplay showing Trinity is not visible in English, because Isaiah uses sound juxtaposition and specialized words to denote Trinity. So you'll have to look at the Hebrew. In Isa63, verses 1-9 show Son @2nd Advent; 9-10 show all Three working together in concert; 11-14, is Spirit; 15-19, is Father. Purpose is to show how They Choose to Work in Concert, rather than Alone, precisely because they are Independently Co-Equal, Identical in Infinite Essence.

        Look how obvious the proof that Bible's not monotheistic: Father Son and Spirit are Three Separate Persons. So "monotheism" is really the wrong description for the Biblical God, and always has been: it's a bad term some invented to assert the Genuine Truth that They are of Co-Identical, Infinite Nature/Attributes. Not polytheism, since in polytheism the gods are not equal in nature/essence. So neither polytheistic nor monotheistic, but Trinity, is the Real nature of Each "God". So they are truly "One", alright: but "one" in either the Hebrew or Greek inspired texts more often first means "united", with stress on the voluntary nature; means "unique", i.e., One Son, One Father, One Spirit, hence is not restricted to one person of the Same Identical Essence; means "same as", "first". Yeah, Same Essence, Each One Wholly God. That's not "only one God" (which is a mistranslation, anyway). Look up all the "one" verses in the original language texts and ponder the "one" wordplay, see for yourself. Sometimes it really helps to do one's homework in The Bible. Amazing, how huffy people get when you try to show 2Cor13:14 as Three Identical, Co-Equal, Same-Essence Gods: the THREE Greek articles deftly state all that.

      So you'll notice that from Akhenaton forward, successor Pharaohs run variations of his same ploy: while returning somewhat to the older system (they didn't have as much power to quell opposition), they keep claiming Ra, so still manage to retain something of the separation. Amon becomes Ra, no longer a local Theban triad deity. Hence even Tutankamen, a boy -- is renamed after Amon, since Amon is now Amon-Ra. So it becomes no surprise that after Akhenaton, there's a tug-of-war over naming and finally the "Ramses" name is adopted outright. Older name, new unitedness, new hegemony. Whew.

  3. So now we have to rebuild the chronology of how and when Israel got to Egypt, in the first place. As Mirroring.htm explains in more detail in its pre-Exodus bullets of the Daniel 9 "seventy sevens" timeline, back c.1916BC Joseph interpreted Pharaoh's dream about an upcoming famine; Amenemhet II, the third Pharaoh of the 12th Dynasty (Middle Kingdom) was that Pharaoh. His grandfather, Amenemhet I, had been assassinated by some court conspirators c.1962BC, and his son (Sesostris I) spent a long time hunting down the conspirators; so now the story of dreams in the jail which Joseph interpreted, mean more. Sesostris' head chef was executed, but the guy with the best memory in Egypt, the so-called "cupbearer", was exonerated -- and then promptly forgot about Joseph until God gave Pharaoh the dream. Principle: let God control the timing!

    1. So Joseph's appointed head vizier, 1916BC, when he's age 30 (Gen41:46); there follows an undocumented 40-year warning period (typical of God's Time System), which includes the seven good years (1882-1876). During this time (1916-1876BC), the entire Land Of Egypt got restructured first to maximize the food availability, i.e., development of the Fayyum depression south of Cairo, per EB. That campaign streamlined and vastly improved the economy for the impending famine scheduled 40 years later; so that when the famine hit in 1875-1868BC, the Pharaoh's food supplies were full; at which point, people sold and sold and sold what they had until all they had left, was to sell themselves. So temporarily, the entire land and its entire people became Pharaoh's property. Just read the story of Joseph in Bible; it's plain what happened even in translation. Since slavery then was considered a commercial transaction, you worked for X years to pay off whatever debt it was (witness how Jacob won Rachel from Laban). Basically, the people became tenant farmers, keeping 80%, paying a flat 20% tax in kind (we should be so lucky).

    2. So, as the land recovered from the famine during the next 40 year grace period (1876-1836BC), people worked off their food debts and gradually gained back their freedom, so the land reverted back to a free economy. But then, both Sesostris III (c.1843BC) and Joseph (1836BC), die. Understand that by this point the Hebrews have had preferential treatment since 1870BC -- 30 years (switchover to oppression began c.1840 BC). So there would be a great envy rampant throughout at least some sectors of the populus, as always -- people are inclined to be jealous of others' success.

    3. Amenemhet III, effectively the last Pharaoh of the 12th dynasty, thus assumes the throne c.1842BC; the one-year delay suggests a succession problem. [There's always some disagreement on dates of these Pharaohs, so you have to think over what data each source presents. Big variation among what's said on the internet, versus Encarta -- which doesn't even list some of these guys as Pharaohs -- versus, say, EB. I use EB's material, from the Macropedia and its "Egypt, History of" articles, but since my set of encyclopedias is 1985, I've no idea what the organization of EB is, today.] Per EB and other research sources you can read, Amenemhet III is considered one of the more illustrious of the Pharaohs. He was definitely ambitious to build: EB extols his reign based on what he built, the high culture -- this was a phase in Egyptian history where Egypt really became anti-foreign (reversing a previous pro-foreign trend), stuck on its culture and wealth.

    4. The gambit to enslave the Hebrews (Exo1:8) began at or not long after Sesostris III's death in 1843BC; Joseph must have retired by 1840BC, for that's the date God uses to calculate the 400 years of slavery. Joseph dies soon afterwards, 1836BC. [Masoretic text in Exo12:40 misses "and in the Land of Canaan", but the LXX has the text. Thus is subsumed all of Joseph's life, 17 years of which were in Canaan, and 13 of which were as a slave in Egypt. Which matters, for the Exodus occurs 490 years after he was enslaved.]

    5. So, Exodus 1:8, now a new chief arose who didn't respect Joseph. Word "know" means to be intimate with, intimately know in Hebrew (yadah): not just an acquaintance. So has the connotation of disrespect, if not knowing: which makes sense, as Joseph was the savior of Egypt, so everyone important would know him well. Word "arose" there is also significant. It means the beginning of the oppression. Exo1:8 uses melek (and the Greek, basileus), so it's not Pharaoh who's talking. ["Pharaoh" is always transliterated in Hebrew and Greek: see the contrast in the original-language texts of v.19, where the midwives are in Thutmose I's court responding to the formal inquiry of the vizier.] So the replacing vizier 'reasons' as Exo1:8 portrays. The 'reasoning' makes sense at the time: maybe Amenemhet III, who apparently had trouble getting to the throne in the first place, was manipulated into agreeing to enslave the Hebrews; maybe he hated foreigners, and the vizier is appealing to his vanity, who knows. In any event, this new Pharaoh had a passion for building, and was anxious to add luster to his father Sesostris III's name, as well as anxious to improve the economy, etc. in the Fayyum depression, which had consolidated his forefathers' power in the first place.

    6. So remember there's a big time gap between v.8 and v.15. In v.8, it's 1840BC or thereabouts. In v.15, it's 1520BC or thereabouts. Thus God summarizes the trickery, and how it was perpetuated so long. Hebrew style of explanation often summarizes panoramically and then draws parallel deftly, i.e., Gen1 is summary, Gen2 is elaboration on the effect of that sixth day. So Exo1:8 is the beginning of the enslavement, and v.15 is the beginning of the deliverance, and spans over 300 years, with v.15 bringing us to circa 1520BC. Notice how the reason for the persecution in v.8 is fear over numbers in case of invasion, so desire to depopulate the vulnerable north (Goshen), and move the Hebrews; but in v.15-22 -- Pharaoh (or more likely, his vizier) wanted only the females, and didn't really do anything when the midwives gave those flimsy excuses (so more likely the vizier was the Haman-type). Two opposite reasons, two different Pharaohs on the throne, two widely divergent times. Not too hard to notice this.

    7. So the Hebrews were deemed a threat because they were FAVORED. Especially after the lean years ended, the people in power were envious of the Hebrews who had the ear of Pharaoh; worse, these foreigners got better treatment versus the Egyptians, who were still working off their debts! So a generation latter, add this problem: their number was an issue. All that political pressure would even today is handy for demagoguery, to stir up prejudice. So it was then, too. What's a Pharaoh to do? Moreover, when one finally has prosperity, he becomes timid. It's a normal human trait to become cowardly when you finally get some good times. So from human nature alone, you can also see how the Hebrews would be kinda chary about protesting. This lends even more support to the idea that Amenemhet or his vizier at least, mighta been a tad resentful of the influence the Hebrews had versus the Egyptians, for lo those 30 years. Populace, too. So this political problem coupled with the fact that Amenemhet III was newly in power and needed support from the Egyptian nobility, is the same ol' same ol' recipe for pogromization which has plagued the Jews, ever since.

      So now you know something else: MANY EGYPTIANS CONVERTED. Sure, maybe a lot of them converted to get into that fertile land of Goshen, or get the favorable treatment the Jews got; but many more, because they believed in Joseph's God. So there you have the numbers problem -- not due to unusual fertility in the Jews themselves, but due to conversion. Not too hard to understand a new Pharaoh and his vizier, would worry.

    8. So what happened to the Hebrews beginning in 1840BC was beyond mere slavery, and they were tricked into it, Exo1:8. Again, slavery in those days was a commercial transaction; but here, there was no intention to compensate, violating the norm; instead, it was motivated by jealousy and rationalized as retribution for having had a favored position with Pharaoh for so long. Bible always tells a story for a teaching reason, not simply to relate facts. This problem is precisely what Israel has faced from the beginning; and ironically, she herself will reject Messiah when He comes for the same reason as she herself was attacked, per Isa52:14, illustrated by the Gospels (i.e., John Chaps 6-11). Man doesn't like it when others are better than him. Fame breeds enemies, always. Superiority breeds them even faster and in greater number.

      So how could they be tricked? Well, remember how slavery was generally used at the time. Slavery doesn't necessarily mean lowlifers or bad living conditions; it means the "master" owns you, and there's a certain contractual consent implied. For you probably don't knife your couch, since you use it; you don't kick the dog, since you don't want him to bite that foot while you sleep. By the same token, if you have skilled slave labor, you don't just beat it up: skilled labor is smart, not dumb. Slavery wasn't pooh-poohed like it is today, and many a slave had great responsibility. Great security, too. Witness how the Israelites wanted to go back to Egypt, complaining many times to Moses as they went in circles in the "wilderness". So if slavery were so bad -- why did they want to return to it? Gee whiz. A little Bible reading goes a long way.

      Moreover, slavery was often considered an honor, a security, and it came in two flavors, one of which was voluntary -- which is why the later Mosaic Law had proscriptions against it, limiting its time. Further, you can't get your pyramid built by poorly feeding your workers, and you can't manage a large population of slaves strictly by the whip, lest they overwhelm you with their large numbers. You have to practice psychological slavery to get a competent physical kind -- especially, if you want it to reproduce. Sheesh. That's how communism and every other ism, every religion, gets its power! Does no one think of these obvious facts?

      Next, if a slave population is isolated, as the temple-building slaves were: then they essentially have their own society to themselves. They have their own internal management and life. Not too shabby. Again, if we would look at Bible, we'd realize the Hebrews weren't keen on being freed by Moses. Moses suffers all kinds of insults and cold-shouldering by the Israelites, as the Exodus account shows. They do not respect him. So if slavery were so bad -- why weren't they salivating for his help? God had to arm Moses with a mouth (Aaron), and a couple of Divine tricks (the leprosed hand and rod) to get them to hear him. So, think: slavery gets pretty comfortable, too. All through the years in the wilderness the Israelites never let Moses forget he brought them out of a nice place (never mind that the 'fiery serpents' -- so named for the way the venom felt -- could zap them at any time). They ever wanted to return to it.

      For, the key to enslavement is to foster a docile, worshipful mentality in the subjects. Carrot and stick, with a lot of carrots: fostering a reverent mystique in the master, etc. That's how slavery largely worked in the ancient world. You don't mistreat your property, if you want it to be competent, see. Severity in treatment was judiciously used to keep the population respectful. Understand that the culture of the ancient world prized what today we'd call machismo, or the Caudillo. The Strong Man. So it was expected that any punishment would be severe, and to not do that was to be weak. And therefore, despised.

      The Jews are always tricked into slavery, beginning with Jacob. He was tricked into serving 20 years out of the initial agreement for 7, and Laban changed Jacob's 'wages', 10 times (Gen31:41). So, they are tricked again, Exo1:8. Most recent example is Germany prior to WWII; that was used for the current 'trick' of herding the Jews back to Israel proper, a 2000-year-attempt, disclosed as Satan's Rev13-17 "shub" ("return") plan; it fostered the current return to Israel against God's orders (covered in LvS4a.htm "Stone Witnesses" and "Rev6-17 trends" links). [Sigh: this is not to say Israel should not exist. Quite the opposite. It is instead to say that we all get tricked, and Israel is the quintessential Biblical example of human nature; we should learn from her and protect her; NOT be anti-semitic, like Satan is. Whoever's appointed God's Chosen -- which during Church is anyone who believes in Christ, Jew or Gentile, Gal3:26-28 -- is Satan's target. Jews are still protected even while unbelievers, under Genesis 12 and like clauses. Woe to anyone who won't defend them, however much they always do the Kadesh-Barnea opposite of God's Will (i.e., pattern of Deut 1:44 in context).]

      Any people is tricked into slavery, especially if they have faith in something. Always use the faith, to advance the ruse.

  4. So between 1836BC and 1520BC, a lot happened. First, the success under Sesostris III was preserved only so long as Amenemhet III lived. The Pharaohs after him were far weaker, and foreign invaders encroached upon Egypt. The Hyksos and other foreign peoples, returned, precisely because Goshen was now open. "Hyksos" and "shepard kings" -- yeah, and the Egyptians don't like sheep -- all that grazing land. So little wonder the 12th dynasty collapsed in civil disturbance and in foreign invasion, with a succession of short-lived, weak Pharaohs of other dynasties. Egypt Became Divided again as she had back a millennia+ prior, with Lower (northern) Egypt ruled by the foreigners, and Upper (southern) Egypt ruled by a series of kings (13th-17th dynasties). Relations weren't terrible between the two sides, but skirmishes did occur, and pressure to unite the country, gradually grew.

      EB goes into some detail to explain why the 12th dynasty collapsed, not accounting the treatment of the Hebrews (who are not mentioned by EB) as the material contributing factor (Gen12 promise -- God will curse those who curse Abram's kids). So, EB kinda denounces the overarching importance of the vizier (Joseph having been the first, though EB doesn't talk about him), even eclipsing the power of Pharaoh; it also faults the reorganization of the polity, etc., which began under Amenemhet II (again, Joseph was vizier). Particularly, EB faults the allowance of foreign enclaves in the Delta (Goshen, in Bible), known to history as the Hyksos (and some other peoples).

      Notice that with the change of the status of the Hebrews, moving them to do all that building, vacated much of the land of Goshen, which was contiguous to what we know as the Saudia Arabian peninsula -- long a land bridge for invading armies, as even Israel has always been -- so the Egyptian Delta region becomes populated with new foreign peoples.. who eventually take over Lower (northern) Egypt. The situation lasts until the late 1500's BC, when Kamose manages to largely drive them out. His successor Ahmose, finally reunites Egypt under himself, and Egyptians rule Egypt once more. The vizier status remains, however. Hence the "king" (Melek, probably vizier) in Exo1:8 and Exo 1:15 are separated by some 300 years, but similar power to influence a relatively new dynasty. King-makers.

      Ahmose I, as noted earlier, reunited Egypt against the Hyksos. His victory was significant, but the Hyksos would remain a problem until sometime between 1504-1480BC: the time when Moses was an adult in Hatshepsut's house, fighting against them. Looks like when they left in the late 1500's, they mixed with, allied with, the Mitanni and kept on causing Egypt trouble.

      See EB's "Egypt, History of" article on the "Second Intermediate Period", which it classes as a time of "social..upheaval", beginning somewhat during, and after Amenemhet III. Of course, the social upheaval would have been the enslaving and moving of those many Hebrews -- who aren't mentioned by name in EB.

  5. Now that you have the background, let's return to Hatshepsut's political dilemma in 1520BC. She's just found this marvelous justification to preserve hers and Egypt's life, drawn from the water, a royal omen (-mose means "born", also). So, problem solved: as a real God's Wife, she had to marry and produce kids. Else the entire legitimacy of her rule, crumbles. She was married to her half-brother, the (then-future) Thutmose II. The guy wasn't much, and was sickly. So she had no male kids by him, and at that time, there would be no suitable husband for her, either. For to have no male heir, was a major political problem in those days; especially since Egyptian rulers were often sterile due to inbreeding (brothers marrying sisters), and not only the rulers (again note the injunction of Exo1:15ff). Thutmose I lost his two elder sons; so he had married off his daughter Hatshepsut to her half-brother.

    The only other suitable husband for so high a Queen would have to come from outside Egypt -- perish the thought! -- maybe among the Mitanni, or other royal houses -- which meant that Egypt would fall under foreign control. Well, that's what her father and her father's father, had just succeeded in thwarting. So the last thing she'll want to do, is marry again. Now, she doesn't have to marry: she can well claim Isis rescued one of those Hebrew male babies, and brought him to me so foreigners will never dominate us! After all, the Hebrews have been with us 400 years -- are they not our servants? Shall not Isis protect us this way? Remember the text of Exo1:15-22? Pharaoh didn't punish those midwives. So this whole drown-the-males business was short-lived. Just long enough for a Moses to be floating up to the Palace.

    So Hatshepsut found a solution to the no-male-heirs problem floating in the Nile -- Moses (="drawn/born from the water"): thus Hatshepsut has a politically acceptable tale to justify a legal heir, without remarriage. Little did Hatshepsut know the name she gave him would become God's way of explaining who he would become, for the qal active participle of masha is similar: he who draws out, God's people. (BTW: -mose suffix in Egyptian then meant a god-begotten individual, according to the lexicons I have -- the "o" sound is very short (like sound of "w"), and the "e" is but a breath. Interesting how there's an etymological connection, per BDB, to cleaning out a camel's uterus -- i.e., after birth. Paul talks of the Baptism of Moses in Romans or somewhere, this way.)

    Handy also, to quell what must have been a good bit of unrest among the Egyptian common people, for all that killing of male babies. A lot of intermarriage existed among the laid-back Egyptians; plus, if the trained slaves of such white-collar status were being persecuted, what's to stop Thutmose I from treating the Egyptians, the same way? People aren't distant from each other's sufferings, because they are wont to conclude, that could happen to me. So, that's another reason why Hatshepsut didn't keep Moses' origin a secret; which we know she didn't, since the nursemaid for the boy was his own mother, Exo2:7. And as for the god-delivered-him tale, it was a big plus that he was so handsome: Acts 7 calls him "beautiful" (big Bible keyword for handsomeness). So this blessed event must have ended that kill-all-males persecution: and it set up the method for God to best communicate let my people GO! to the Egyptians 80 years later -- so they could know yet again, Who the Real God was.

  6. Hatshepsut sets precedent here: every Pharaoh after her will claim some kind of god-sanctifying miracle or dream to justify his rule. Especially in light of what would later happen during the Exodus, the approval of a god would be critical: who wants some god to defeat the nation, as He did during Amenhotep II? Test the claim yourself.

  7. When Moses was 8 years old, Thutmose I, died; Thutmose II ascends. It's 1512BC. Then Hatshepsut's half-brother-full-husband Thutmose II died another 8 years later; by that time, he had begotten a son via one of his concubines; and the son, is almost 10 years old.

  8. So Hatshepsut then took over as regent, 1504BC; Moses was 16 years old, still underage.

  9. Then a queer thing happened; according to EB, she suddenly shifted her claim to be Pharaoh in her own right. This female-rulership was unprecedented, shocking. No woman ever claimed the prerogatives of Pharaoh, though she stopped shy of claiming the actual title. According to EB (watch how the Moses story is morphing) she suddenly claimed Amon told her in a dream he was her real father. See the likeness? Oh, this beautiful boy was given us by the gods; so, upgrade it, since after all, she's not remarrying -- if one god story worked, another can explain why. Now SHE is the one begotten by the god Amon. Makes it real easy to put miracle-child Moses on the throne, that way. Her heir apparent, blessed by Amon. And she doesn't remarry, still -- wouldn't need to, with an heir and spare.

  10. So she glorifies her father (Thutmose I), and identifies with him; note how by claiming Amon her dad, and by glorifying her earthly father, any rival claims are rendered of permanently lower status. Yeah, because there's this son of her former husband, who also had the same glorified father, may he rest in peace! EB article "Egypt, History of" noted there also were dual statues of her and whoever 'Thutmose III' really was, among the many monuments. So EB thinks there was no antagonism between Thutmose III and Hatshepsut. Yeah, but maybe dual Thutmoses, too -- except the older one, was Moses. After all, he did turn 18 the year of her sudden shift in 'role' (1503 or so). Old enough to marry and bear heirs. In a still-wobbly political situation until he did bear heirs -- if married to Hatshepsut's daughter. So whether it was ego or savvy, Hatshepsut's 'dream' of Amon telling her he begot her, preserved Egypt's sovereignty. And also, her own head. For Moses being old enough, means also -- old enough to ward off a younger rival who wasn't technically her son. Whose mother would be hostile to both Hatshepsut and Moses, though the rival himself was but 12 years old. People have a way of gathering around rivals, like so many Frenchmen did around the Dauphin.

  11. Much of the glory attributed to the reign of Thutmose III was really gained during her rule. The EB catalog of her accomplishments is kinda like what Caesar did for Rome -- lots of vast administrative improvements in how the polity is run, better life for its citizens, as a consequence, and definitely a coalescence of her power by playing off opposites. Again, there's this running duality of a seeming harmony between her and 'Thutmose III', yet antagonism -- so if two of them, one Moses (friendly) and one a rival -- well, then all this seemingly conflicting data, fits.

      For example, why didn't she just marry Moses off at the ripe ol' age of 18, to her daughter? Well, the daughter may have been too young. Or, if not too young, there's the problem of the younger rival. So long as the daughter is a kind of carrot Hatshepsut can dangle in front of the rival's adherents, the legitimacy they crave can be solved peacefully, and -- they are held at bay, waiting. This trick could work well for 12 more years. Which, it does. So there's no requirement to marry Moses off. The rival can die, can find some other preference, can maybe be placated in some other way when he is old enough to make decisions on his own. But once the heir and spare reach the maturity age for kingship (usu. age 30), well -- then the game becomes dicey.

      For Moses' part, he's really falling in love with his God. So as he grows up, the problem of marrying and becoming Pharaoh becomes more of an ethical issue for him. So he wouldn't be chomping at the bit to have Hatshepsut give her daughter's hand in marriage.

    EB said scholars postulated that as Hatshepsut aged, this 'Thutmose III' became so popular, she eventually lost power and had to make way for him. Then there's the seemingly contradictory Macropedia article on Thutmose III, that she remained regent for the first 20 years of his rule. Aha. Two pictures, two truths, two layers, so maybe two Thutmose III's. Especially, since the alleged Thutmose III by the concubine, was a full 6 years younger at this critical juncture. So who was running out there in all those battles, buildings, triumphs, tribute collecting, gaining in popularity -- in her name? Can't be a 12-year old.

    EB kept on mentioning that earlier theories of the reign showed fighting factions, and pooh-poohed them. Yeah, both the EB position and the earlier claims of antagonism reconcile -- if there are two heirs to rally around, and that's the antagonism. Wouldn't have to be the two heirs being antagonistic to each other, or to her. It's not hard to imagine. The Egyptians, for all their God's Wife business, were male-dominated in cultural orientation. It had to chafe that this woman is holding power, making statues of herself as a male. She needed to have An Heir statued with her to justify sustaining that not-married status. But which Thutmose? It had to be Moses, the other was too young, and as he grew, well -- forces would rally behind that other one who at least had royal blood from his father, in him. Ergo the contradictory forces no longer are contradictory. Typical rival factions that every ruling family, suffers.

  12. Thus she remained in control, until 1482BC: she died that year -- maybe was murdered. So in that year, Moses would have been 38 years old; the younger boy would have been about age 32. So what had become of the heirship plans between 1503 and 1482? Clearly Moses did not marry the daughter. Must have been putting 'Momma' off, or 'Momma' wasn't in too big a hurry to leave off rule, given such a dutiful Moses. After all, if she died he could take over; better to consolidate all the political connections, first. Ergo all that reorganizing and genius activity. If the polity is better-run, if the heir apparent has time to win over the hearts of the people, then they won't mind his real origin. For, as said earlier, it wasn't a secret that he was Hebrew: see Exo2:14 -- they knew who he was and where he was from. Moreover, remember how she tied her divinity to her father, who had persecuted the Hebrews. That was a kind of bonus -- for one could say this boy was given by the gods to stop the persecutions, which the father did -- but you just know, not everyone in Egypt was happy to be prospectively ruled by a slave boy not of royal blood.

  13. We know from Bible that Moses rejected the Pharaonic throne at age 40 (Acts 7:23); year of rejection, is 1480BC. Moses maybe became Thutmose III and then abdicated, or abdicated upon the offer of the throne at/near her death: Hebrews 11:24-27. Since our BC/AD calendars have a 4-year hickey in them (with the result that AD, which is supposed to begin with Christ's Birth, ends up dating his birth about 3BC) -- it's close enough an estimate that her deathbed precipitated a decision on his part to take the kingdom or no -- and he decided, no. There was by that point a long-standing repeating pattern of the current Pharaoh crowning his heir as co-regent in the last two years of the reign -- viz., 12th dynasty custom; and the New Kingdom (18th dynasty) emulated the Middle Kingdom. So the formalization of rule might have been the push for Moses' decision. Maybe it was initially a peaceful "no" -- and the rival married the daughter. Then, as time dragged on, the rival (like Saul, later vs. David) became jealous. Or, opportunistic, once the daughter died (she died before Hatshepsut did, I can't tell how much earlier). That smacks of the typical pattern in Egyptian and even later co-regency histories anywhere in the world you want to go. So "Thutmose III" was initially Moses, and when Hatshepsut is dying, he elects the younger as co-regent, thus mollifying the parties; but then he himself, abdicates. Peaceful transition, but after that, the winning faction would want some kind of revenge, maybe.

  14. For it would have been a major personal and political upset for Moses to turn Hatshepsut down. Moses was pretty hotheaded about defending Israel at the time; he thinks to save Israel his own way, and flubs it. So, he runs (Exo2:14, Acts 7:29), and stays in Midian for another 40 years before returning to Egypt to free Israel the RIGHT way (Acts 7:29, Exo7:7). Year of the return, is circa 1440BC. [Messiah announces Himself in 27AD. That's too 'convenient' to claim no connection. For 1443BC-27AD is 1470 years, which is 3x490. So that implies it took about 3 years (again, how 'convenient') from the time Moses returned with Aaron, to convince Israel to follow him. We know he's age 80 when he talks to Pharaoh (i.e., Exo7:7) and the Exodus occurs. God Thinks of everything. But I can't think of how I independently stumbled onto the 3-year hiatus when initially writing this Exodate.htm, but it's somewhere. Will have to fix this footnote later.]

      The word jare in Hebrew and phobew in Greek of both Exo2:14 and Heb11:27 are important. Each verb means either or both "revere" or "fear". Play on phobew by the author in Hebrews tells us the translation we've got of Exo2:14, is a lemon -- it wasn't Pharaoh who Moses feared, see, but THE LORD (Heb11:27). Look up the Hebrew and Greek of Exo2:14: inspired text is more like he got the Word from God and revered IT, frankly; so the translations mislead -- of Whom was Moses afraid/revering? Not Pharaoh, but a Bigger King. Exodus 2:15 makes better sense, finally -- no motive to kill Moses just because he legally killed a murdering Egyptian, k? The new 'Thutmose III' didn't want a rival staying alive -- very common practice among rulers, to seek to kill those who can take your place. Besides, 2:15 is wordplay -- Moses got the Word from the Word, and left. The rival got the word Moses left, and was after him to kill him, lest he return with an ARMY, see.

      Acts 7:29 fits with Heb11:27. Common sense would tell you, he had no reason to be afraid since he was Crown Prince or even Pharaoh at the time -- killing the Egyptian was within his right to do. Further, you don't abdicate if you're afraid, capisce? Given the later command by God to go back when "those who would kill you are dead" (Exo4:19) -- brackets Exo2:14, signifying God had told him to leave in the first place. God frequently does tell people where to go, and quite a bit of awe accompanies any such contact (witness his excuses in Exo3&4).

  15. Meanwhile, the shame of Moses' abdication created a great deal of trouble. Kinda looks as if his refusal to take the pharaonic mantle wrecked the family? The timing of it is sooo close. Now the rival takes over as Thutmose III (to erase the shame, blot out Moses); he married Hatshepsut's daughter, Neferure (really, "NeferuRa"), but the woman died soon afterwards, and before Hatshepsut died, according to EB's article on the early history of Egypt. Well, how did Neferuri die? In childbirth? Suspicious circumstances? If you spell her name "NeferuRa" you can get the following file to download as a pdf from Google: click here. I didn't use its contents to write this webpage, and it disagrees with EB about whether Neferuri even lived long enough to marry.

    When my pastor goes over these events he remarks that Moses had been in love with her, and she him; I don't know why he concludes that. So the wife of a husband she didn't want, and the husband who was quite talented but yet inferior to a usurper by some trick of a dream -- well, that's a pretty potent pot of hatred brewing. It's doubtful whether Neferuri was the mother of anyone. The son who would become Amenhotep II, was born 1470BC, a good 10 years after Hatshepsut died; and Neferuri died even before that.

  16. So this (rival) 'Thutmose III' was a very gifted Pharaoh, like Moses was. So maybe he or his son did deface Hatshepsut's monuments, thus accounting for EB's statement that the defacing went on in the latter end of his reign. Well -- Moses did stuff in her name during her regency, like drive out the Hyksos/Mitanni. Whether Thutmose III ordered the defacing, or if he had a vengeance motive, is secondary; to blot out a shameful event is sufficient reason. Change the face of those 'Thutmose III' statues to his own, make other little amendments here and there, etc. Political unity demands it. Defacement might not have occurred until after the Exodus, since the time window is too short and our ability to date physically (as distinct from using records to fix times) wouldn't be accurate enough. There's only a thirty-year window between the ending years of Thutmose III and Amenhotep's presumed ending regnal year. That's not enough of a gap to rely on physical (i.e., carbon-) dating.

  17. Next anomaly: historians remark how long was the reign of Thutmose III, 50 years (1504-1450BC). Oh, and it can't be that the period covered two heirs, the first one being uh, Moses? Especially since the Exodus date FITS? Only the reign of Ramses II was longer -- come on, something's fishy here, with one or two rules being long, over a span of several hundred years, and the rest of them being a dozen years or less in length?

  18. So the son of Thutmose III, takes the name of Amenhotep II; not the name, 'Thutmose IV' in honor of his real father's great exploits. Weird: Thutmose III is regarded as one of Egypt's greatest Pharaohs. Not to take his name would be dead wrong for a son to do. Unless, there was something to cover up. And what's to cover up? Who was the real Thutmose III during the first 20 years; the shame of being rejected, within the family; being the son of someone whose claim to royalty was less than wholly valid, since the senior female royal line effectively died out with Neferure. Would you have wanted to be that kid growing up? No matter what your father's exploits were, you probably didn't have a very good relationship with him.

    A ruler's Name is supposed to convey a character that encourages the ruled to regard him as heroic. A 'bad' name means a curse, but a 'good' name means blessing. So if a name changes, you know there was a sense of curse that became associated with the old name. So, a name CHANGE is partly done for revenge, maybe; but politically, to assure the people of future good times. So if Amenhotep II actually perished in the Red Sea deluge with his troops, don't count on Egyptian history to verify it. They'd substitute someone else and call that person Amenhotep II. Do count on the next Pharaoh to not use the same name as the shamed predecessor; do count on the fact that time has a way of romanticizing the past, etc.

      The 12th Dynasty had a custom of installing a son as co-regent 2 or more years prior to the ending of the current Pharaoh. So, they couldn't have the same name at the same time. Especially, since the god being patronized was supposed to be ruling through the Pharaoh, you'd have to have two different Pharaonic names. So, in the 12th dynasty, there was this trading of names: Sesostris (honoring Seti and Osiris) and Amenemhet (honoring Amon and I forget the other god). The names of father and son alternate predictably. So, in the final regnal years of the one, the other has a clearly distinguishable name. Not so, in the 18th dynasty. It's a succession beginning Thutmose I, then II, then III -- then a CHANGE? Hmmm. (The 19th Dynasty would resume the co-regencies, so they alternate between Ra and Seti patron-gods.) EB says that Amenhotep II became co-regent with his dad in the last two years of the latter's life. Ok. But the boy was 18. So upon his accession, why not change the name to HONOR his father? That's what the previous rulers had done.

      People took pride in their strong rulers. So to ennoble a bad time, perhaps a successor ruler's name would be blotted out altogether, and his years tacked on to his more illustrious predecessor. As if the succeeding ruler, never existed. It's a phenomenon of ancient history, and the Egyptians in particular were wont to do such things. Don't know why, then, this fact isn't suspected when it comes to Amenhotep II, especially since the names before and after him, change as they do.

  19. Of course, the rosy picture painted of Amenhotep II's reign, makes the claim of prosperity even more suspect. Egyptians exaggerated their rule; so EB article takes exception to the claim that Amenhotep bagged so many prisoners, especially since his dad eschewed taking prisoners for slavery (Hebrews don't take prisoners, by the way, and Moses would not have wanted to enslave, being born a slave himself). Then again, EB gauges the prisoner taking bogus based on the wrong criterion of arable land, but the Egyptians used slave labor for other purposes (like for building, as Exodus explains). So maybe Amenhotep II's ninth-year-campaign account isn't exaggerated; also, Egypt would need replacement slaves, if the slave masters suddenly were treating people as harshly as Bible describes -- which would be abnormal, and in reaction against Moses. So the story of this Amenhotep II needs investigating. Kinda like Communist propaganda, singing the praises of production when in fact everyone is starving.

  20. So notice that the record for this supposedly 25-year long Pharaoh (1450-1425BC), only has campaigns through the ninth year, according to the EB article on Egypt's early history. Well, that means 1441 BC. Amenhotep II was sure at home when Moses came to visit in 1440BC. Most of Exodus is devoted to their conversations. Also, it's again a bit long for the average pharaonic reign, which is more like 10-13 years. They don't usually come to the throne early, or if they do, they don't live long. Amenhotep II, according to the EB article, was made coregent with Thutmose III in 1452 BC, when the former was only 18 years old. So he's Pharaoh alone two years later -- so his dad probably appointed him coregent due to illness (Thutmose III would have been about 64 years old at death). Given the above Moses story, it makes sense that dad wouldn't wait until the last minute, too. Which means this Pharaoh was only 30 years old when Moses visits him. Lots of rancor, then, but too young to just order Moses to be executed, too.

      The Bible Exodus record really should get serious attention, for it relates a definite schism within the royal household's advisors. No ruler rules apart from the consensus of the lesser nobles in his kingdom -- they are his power base. At 30 years old, Amenhotep II has only been ruler for 10 years; he's still young, and dependent on his advisors.

      So, note: by the last few plagues, the advisors are begging Pharaoh to give in to Moses' request. Moreover, the population was seriously divided over this problem, for the Egyptians not only give what my pastor quips as "400 years' back wages" to the departing Israelites, but a large number of "mixed multitudes" went with them. Total population of Jews alone was probably something like oh, 1.5-2 million. Total believer population was something like six million, so most of it was comprised of leaving Egyptians. The country would have been depopulated severely. This would make those remaining short of labor (which accounts for why so few building projects are undertaken for awhile after the Exodus), but they would have had a lot more property and food, due to what those leaving, left behind. So Egypt was also helped.

      Thutmose IV's reign is characterised as prosperous by EB. Those leaving were largely from Egypt proper. People from the outer parts of the empire would be attracted to come IN -- the plagues didn't last long enough for people at the ends of the empire, to congregate and leave with the Israelites. So, picture, say, northern Egypt just after the Exodus as largely empty. Just as back during the enslavement of the Hebrews, the exits of so many provided a fabulous opportunity for others to move in, get promoted, have a better life. The story of the Exodus spread like wildfire across the Middle East and beyond, so people would come from miles around to get better employment, and life. They would be sorely needed. Prosperity would indeed be the outcome. During this time also Egypt had become distinctly pro-foreign, the EB article on Egypt's early history explains. Well, the friendly pre-Exodus climate, coupled with the Exodus itself, would make for a welcome mix of immigrants. Egypt would sorely need them.

      It wouldn't have taken long to rebuild whatever was not recovered from the Red Sea. It's not as though Pharaoh's entire army went into the Sea, since the military itself was mostly on the move, scattered across the widely divergent boundaries that then constituted Egypt. Again, the picture painted by those who believe in the Exodus is overrated in terms of the devastation on Egypt -- on the other hand, the real devastation of DEpopulation, would be a boon, not a bane.

      The bane was political, a point which will be covered later.

  21. Then there's the anomaly about population estimates during Amenhotep II. The author of the "Egypt, History of" article in EB seems very concerned to demonstrate the fallacy of Hebrew slaves, though the intent is only obliquely discernible in the argument that Amenhotep II couldn't have bagged 90,000 prisoners and sustain them within the agricultural productivity of Egypt; again, basing that on the criterion of arable land (deeming the slaves to be taken in order to cultivate the land). So, inaptly concludes that the 90,000 are a Syrian-dependency population.

      The spread of the population in Egypt would not be concentrated around the arable land: precisely because the land itself was so badly needed. So, only a de minimis population worked it, so to save every hectare for agriculture, not dwelling space. This would also facilitate patrolling and thus defending that territory from invaders, since it was the breadbasket of the nation. By contrast, in the more desert-type regions, obsessed as the Pharaohs were with their buildings and death cults, many lived and worked. So you've got two constantly moving bands of people with a vested interest in protecting that land against marauders: the Egyptians who hauled the food out of the 'breadbasket' to the remote regions where people worked, and the largely mobile military, who probably accompanied those moving the food. In effect, then, you have a constant stream of people going to and back from the area, which stream itself would have the effect of a patrol perimeter: so it would be hard for an invader to slip in undetected and do much damage.

      So it would argue for a much larger population being needed to ferry all that food to the people working in the arid regions on the tombs, etc. where slavery WAS practiced. This separation of peoples also had the added advantage of making such populations, easier to control. So to say that at the time of Amenhotep II there were only 4,500,000 in Egypt based on arable land, is not right.

      Additionally, Egypt was a trading nation par excellence. Nearly all the Middle East fiefdoms were. Mobility was the norm, not the exception: the land had to lie fallow, people weren't particularly clean, the trash would collect -- much like in American Indian cultures, though more stable. So a larger population could be sustained, if sufficiently mobile. This, if trade was a major source of revenue -- and we know it was -- would justify the mobility, as well.

      So you end up having the following population groups: trade-related, constantly on the move; building populations, guarded by a third group, the overseers; military would be a fourth group, also constantly on the move; fifth, the agricultural population, likewise controlled, working up and down the banks of the Nile and other delta regions, would 'migrate' as the seasons changed, for different soils and different crops, etc; sixth, the royal household itself must keep moving to keep track of everything. Such an economy can easily sustain a much larger, partly mobile population than 4,500,000.

  22. The Exodus completely upset the balance of power in the Middle East. Egypt didn't regain its former glory for a long time; a century of civil unrest began at this point. Moreover, foreign encroachments on her previously won territory were hereafter much more successful. No EXTERNAL military campaigns of any import occur after 1440 BC, until the 19th Dynasty. Yeah, kinda hard to defend yourself when you've lost all your best officers in the Red Sea. The embarrassment of this other 'god' defeating the greatest power in the region at its "zenith" (Encyclopedia Britannica term for the reign of Thutmose III) -- well, that bad event kept on plaguing Egypt's reputation. So, Thutmose IV didn't fight, but married. Diplomacy became the weapon of choice. Never mind, no nation engages in diplomacy if his sword is the more efficient tool.

      The unrest would be understandable, considering that the flower of Egyptian leadership passed away in the Red Sea, especially for the superstitious Egyptians, who would blame that leadership for failing their gods in some way. But then, which gods were even the right gods, anymore? You can't upset a person's faith so fundamentally as must have happened at the Exodus, and expect life's whys to resume their old answers.

  23. Weird how the Pharaonic name flips back and forth from this point forward. Of course, not weird, if Amenhotep was the Pharaoh of the Exodus, which he should have been: reign was 1450-1425. Oh, see what happened? Amenhotep II didn't take the Thutmose name and he was defeated -- must appease the Thoth god, then, by retaking the name. Or, since Amon was the real father of Hatshepsut, and Thoth was a scribal god in the pantheon, and Amenhotep II shamed Egypt, better that the successor, take a lower name! There are competing explanations one can adopt. In any event, the name changes here, unlike those of the XIIth dynasty, are claims of infused or directly-sanctioned divine parentage or appointment beginning with Hatshepsut, so are not honorific. So the names alternate for different reasons.

      Dear ol' Thutmose IV was young when he died (that too speaks volumes), and so maybe Amon is the one to appease. Hence Amenhotep III. By Amenhotep IV, then, neither god seemed to be the right one to appease -- come up with an entirely new religion -- oh, that will make everything ok. NOT. See? All this switching back-and-forth is not like it was in the 12th Dynasty. There's a real upset going on.

      Question is, if Amenhotep II drowned in the Red Sea with the troops in 1440BC, who took his place? Who is buried in his tomb? Could be he washed on shore; more likely, with all that gold and hardware in the Reed Sea, being as the Egyptians had long been sea-wise, people went in there and got out what they could scavenge. We don't know how many sons Amenhotep II had, but his FIRSTborn was killed in the last plague. It wouldn't be too hard to pretend that he didn't perish in the Reed Sea -- particularly, to counter what was electrifying news around the Middle East. Egypt would have needed to mount some kind of disinformation campaign, to protect itself. Of course, even if he didn't perish with the troops, the shame would have caused his death. Someone would have killed him, replaced him -- something. A machismo culture can't stand this kind of defeat, equitably.

      There are a lot of Bible verses on Exodus, and I remember my pastor teaching us that Pharaoh perished in the sea with his troops. But I don't remember which verses he exegeted to prove Pharaoh himself perished in the deluge; there are too many verses for me to check them, now.

  24. So, it's not too surprising that there is a marked ambivalence of religious fluctuation from this point forward. A sort of battling, even, over which gods should be sought for favors. A return to the former 'purity' of Egyptian deities as a crusade resurfaces after Akhenaton (initially Amenhotep IV) dies, but the idea of one god replacing the others, actually began during Thutmose IV; Akhenaton's 'conversion' to Aton occasioned his name change; TutankAMEN -- a grandson -- completes the reversal, even repudiating entirely his real father, Akhenaton, and instead claiming Amenhotep III as his father. Skipping over Thutmose IV, too. So skipping over the entire Thutmose house! Skipping over which Thutmose III, dya think?

    So from Thutmose IV onward, witness this new feature: the idea that the gods are competing, not complementary; so if you choose the wrong ones you suffer! That idea was born in the Exodus -- God defeated Pharaoh's gods, and brought the Hebrews out to the Promised Land. That was the interpretation by everyone all around the Middle East, and it persisted throughout the Middle East, even until today. Again, this switch from eclectic to exclusive, whether by monotheism or by defeat -- is another marker of the correct dating for the Exodus. [The battle of who's God is of course what drives radical Muslims and militant Christians, still. Neither group seems to get it that the Real God needs no 'help', as He demonstrated when He did the real Exodus of 1440BC.]

  25. Also, check out the fact that Thutmose IV, whose reign only lasted 7 years, was NOT the eldest son of Amenhotep II, plus the fact that he retook the Thutmose moniker: which has to mean he was ashamed of his father. According to the Macropedia article on Thutmose IV, he got this dream that he was to become Pharaoh. So absent the dream, he wasn't entitled to inherit, see. As noted earlier, he also married into the Mitanni to secure a diplomatic alliance, a trend that continued with his sons. Oh: by the way, from the 1440 Exodus until the end of the 18th dynasty, is about four generations (Amenhotep IV's two sons reign for very short periods). Four-generation curse. Of course, there were four generations from Thutmose I - Amenhotep II, as well.

    It's difficult to harmonize the many conflicting accounts by Egyptologists for the 18th Dynasty. The conflict centers on Thutmose III, however, and from his reign forward there is a consistent recourse to divine paternity. In one account the claim is made that Amon himself appointed Thutmose III during a priestly service, the latter having been a mere prelate in Amon's temple until his appointment (Click here and then go to page 383 in the pdf). Of course, if that was the son (who would have been 13) of the concubine and Thutmose II, it's a handy justification to use. Hatshepsut started the ball rolling by claiming Moses was a gift from Isis, then claiming Amon was her real dad 'inhabiting' Thutmose I when he sired her, so a replacing Thutmose III (replacing Moses) would need a divine mandate, since Hatshepsut had claimed two of them. More important also to find a miraculous sanction, since Hatshepsut's daughter was a God's Wife Heiress and then died childless prior to Hatshepsut.

    So however you want to explain why the names changed, the changes depict turmoil, not the centuries-past convention of alternating-god-honorifics. So that begs the question: WHY? I submit it's due to the shame Egypt experienced, which shame of course would never be recorded on stelae. Which shame would instead urge upon the successors, a need to deface and break with the past.

    It's certainly much less plausible to claim Moses was born during the Rameses clan 200+ years later. Merneptah's poem saying "Israel is desolate and has no seed" -- is a dead giveaway that Israel had long been a nation. For it was not a nation at the time it left, but rather had become a nation after it entered the Land 200 years prior. To refer to it as a people is apt, for it is God's People, not a 'nation' under a human king as others were. So that imprecation would have meaning, since Gideon had been winning major victories at the time, and in the name of God, not a human king.

    And of course Israel's enemies have been denying her existence ever since, even via the mouths of dishonest 'scholars' to this day. Anti-semitism is satanic. That's what you hear via any 'scholar' who discredits Israel's past. Always the same mouth, as the Merneptah stele. For centuries.

  26. On the Reed/Red Sea debate: it's clearly RED Sea. Hebrew is Seaweed-Sea (Exo13:18), but it was a particular sea name, not just a general description. But the verse's LXX was translated in the 270's BC, and it uses the term RED Sea; as does Acts 7:36, written centuries later. So we know By What Name that same sea was known at the time those verses were written. See also Heb11:29. LXX was the main Bible everyone used, in Stephen's day. My lexicons say "red" term used is not used in any other way, which is significant: eruthros. BibleWorks search confirms this: it's a common proper noun usage, even in the Apochrypha. Term goes back to Homer; classics writers use the term as a proper noun, too; Herodotus notes the term's meaning as color of red wine or blood. In short, there is a lot of extra-Biblical material of this same Sea and its location, which corresponds to what we know as the Red Sea. Greek name Anglicized is Erythrean Sea, and its endpoints aren't always just the Gulf portions, but some writers define it more broadly, viz., where it empties out (Indian Ocean); always a proper noun in the Greek classics like Xenophon and Aeschylus, etc. Bible, too.

    This makes it very likely the right location. Sea probably got that name due to the people dying in it, because it was common for Abram et seq. to give places their names, based on some character of an important event taking place at that location. Also, since the Greeks commonly used the name, they knew what happened there. So this linguistic tidbit tells you much. Another name tipoff to an event everyone still debates even happened? Looks like the ancient Greeks had no problem with it. So you should be able to go through ancient literature to the time when the RED Sea was given that name. Clearly the name changed with the Exodus since AT the Exodus it's not called by that name. So it ACQUIRED that name given what happened. A linguistic trace takes time. But language is a good tool, like DNA, for tracking origin and morphing.

See what a difference in perception of the obvious the Holy Spirit makes? See how blind we all are? If something so obvious as Why the blazes didn't anyone consult the Bible, which not only tells of the events in detail, but also has a complete accounting-system-for-time based ON the Exodus date? So you can track all the dates in the Old Testament based on that system, including the date Messiah will come and PAY? See? It's not humanly possible for otherwise nice and brilliant scholars, to be so incompetent: generation after generation. We must be getting the demonboys to 'help' us not ask the right questions. "Satan" after all does mean, "opposing attorney"!

So we can be bang-on competent in secular areas, but boy oh boy, if the topic is related to Bible, suddenly sloppiness is routine, constant -- whether we are fans of the Bible or not! Predictable as sunrise. At what point do we catch on that THIS God is real, Adam's sin nature is real.. and Satan's messing with us is real, since for centuries our normal scholarly competence goes right out the window.. but only, when related to Bible.