Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/pm/pm20060111.htm
EXODUS: FUNCTIONING WELL IN A HOPELESS GROUP ASSIGNMENT
Part I: God's Great Deliverance Of Israel Amid Humanly Helpless Trials
C. [Parenthetical Lesson: Identifying The Pharaoh Of The Exodus In Defense Of Scripture's Inerrancy]
Lesson: The archaeological evidence supports the early date of the Exodus that agrees with Scripture.
- A great debate has occurred over the date of the Exodus, one that involves the credibility of the Bible!
- As any debate that affects the Bible's credibility is important to our faith, we now study that debate itself:
- [Parenthetical Lesson: Identifying The Pharaoh Of The Exodus In Defense Of Scripture's Inerrancy]
- Liberal Theology scholars date the exodus around 1290 B. C. in the reign of Rameses II for these reasons:
- Israel built the city of Rameses (Ex. 1:11), and archaeological finds arguably show this occurred under Rameses II (1304-1236 B. C.), so it is held that he was the pharaoh of the Exodus, B.K.C.,O.T., 104.
- Archaeologist Nelson Glueck reported that he found no evidence of settlements in Edom, Moab and Ammon from 1900 to 1300 B. C., so it is claimed that Moses would not have met strong resistance from these people groups in the Exodus like the Pentateuch claims he did until the 13th century, Ibid.
- Archaeological evidence suggests broad destruction occurred in Palestine in the 13th century, not in the 15th century, so it is alleged that the Exodus occurred in the 13th century B. C., Ibid., p. 105.
- However, Scripture twice CLEARLY claims the Exodus occurred in the 15th century B. C. (as follows):
- 1 Kings 6:1 reveals 480 years elapsed between the Exodus and the start of Solomon's temple in 966 B. C., Ibid., p. 104. Thus, 1 Kings 6:1 places the Exodus in the middle of the 15th century!
- Judges 11:26 reveals that, in the time of Jephthah around 1100 B. C., Israel had been in the Holy Land 300 years. That 300 years plus the 40 years of wilderness wanderings "places the Exodus in the middle of the fifteenth century" in contrast to the view by Liberal Theology proponents of the late date! (Ibid.)
- For the solution, we adopt the arguments supplied in the Bible Knowledge Commentary, Old Testament:
- Each point by the late date (Liberal Theology) side [see "II,A,1-3" above] can be countered as follows:
- Regarding the city of Rameses, Moses was born after it was built, and he was 80 years old at the time of the Exodus (Exodus 7:7), so Rameses was built before Pharaoh Rameses even ruled. This claim is defensible as follows: (1) "Rameses" could have been a common name in the Hyksos era (1730-1570 B. C.); (2) "Rameses" means "begotten of Ra," the Hyksos' sun god and (3) the city name was first spelled "Raamses," not like the Pharaoh "Rameses" [or "Ramesses"], Ibid., p. 103.
- Regarding Nelson Glueck's findings, (1) his methods have been questioned by other archeologists, and (2) recent findings show settlements were in the area at Tell Deir Alla, Ibid., p. 104. (3) Also, Edom, Moab and Ammon may have ruled their lands though they were yet partly nomadic, Ibid.
- Regarding the archaeological evidence of Palestine, (1) most of Joshua's conquests did not involve city destruction, explaining the absence of destruction evidence at the 15th cent. dig levels, Ibid., p. 104; Jos. 11:13. (2) Also, the broad destruction in the land of the 13th cent. is explained via known invaders like Pharaoh Nerneptah (c. 1230 B. C.) & the People of the Sea (1200 B. C.), Ibid., p. 105.
- Then, additional archaeological evidence supports the early 15th century date of the Exodus as follows:
- Amenhotep II (1450-1425 B. C.) repressed insurgents in the early part of his reign, and Semites like the Hebrews were forced to make bricks like Israel did according to Exodus 5:7-18. (Ibid.)
- Though Pharaoh Thutmose IV succeeded his father, Amenhotep II, Thutmose was not his eldest son as is explained by the loss of Amenhotep II's firstborn in the Exodus 12:29 plague, Ibid., p. 104!
- Archaeological evidence in Palestine dated around 1400 B. C. corresponds well with the Exodus, for it shows that Jericho, Ai and Hazor were then destroyed, Ibid. Indeed, "all accredited Palestinian artifactual evidence supports the literary account that the Conquest occurred at the time specifically dated by the biblical historians," Ibid., p. 104 in citing Bruce K. Waltke, "Palestinian Artifactual Evidence Supporting the Early Date of the Exodus," Bibliotheca Sacra 129. Jan.-Mar., 1972:47.
- Thus, in support of the Bible's inerrancy, the pharaoh of Exodus 2:23 was "Thutmose III (1482-1450), the predecessor to the pharaoh of the Exodus, Amenhotep II," Ryrie Study Bible, KJV, 1978 ed., ftn.!
Application: Scripture is inerrant as the authoritative Word of God, so we must believe and heed it.