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Setting Scripture in context

On another thread, the subject of the veracity of the Pentateuch reared its' head.

    Many Christians claim archaeological evidence confirming Scripture as historically accurate is proof of the Divinely inspired nature of God...but when other archaeology seems to conflict with their interpretation of Scripture, they dismiss either it, or the person who uses it, as unchristian.

    I asked when the events of Moses' life took place - in history - so we could establish exactly where our arguments were coming from.

    I asked who wrote the Pentateuch, and when, and whether cross-cultural influence was in the writing.
I ask these questions again, and open the thread to discussion of events in the second and first millennia BC, which affected Scripture, and, through Scripture, the present day.
Farmer Geddon

Am I to assume that by Scripture you mean the Greek books we know as the Gospels?

Quelle surprise!
Actually I was thinking more of the Pentateuch, and the 'history' books - joshua, Judges, Kings & Chronicles...though I'd throw the major prophets in the miv as well
Farmer Geddon

I was just trying to establish whither you were wanting to chat about the Greek OT or the Hebrew!!

The differences in the historical context of the Hebrew O.T and the Septuagint are minimal.
Farmer Geddon

The Jewish tradition claims that "Moses received the Torah from Sinai,"

But there is also an ancient tradition that the Torah existed in heaven, not only before God revealed it to Moses, but even before the world was created.

In rabbinic literature, it was taught that the Torah was one of the seven things created prior to the creation of the world......

Is that what you are chatting about?

"Ralph" raised the issue of circumcision, pointing out its exclusivity for Jews.
I pointed out that there was ample evidence for the practice over a considerable timespan in Egypt; I asked him to opine on the possible date of Moses' time (and the events that followed.)
He has so far declined.
I therefore opend this thread to see if we could anchor the Scriptures to history.
I await Ralph's response with interest!

** Edited **  this is not the Bear Pit.  ( , I wonder who did that! note added later by Julie, yes I know and I don't think I put anything controversial, did I?   Can you advise me what I posted that wasn't right on here?     )

Is this what you are referring to Jim ?


Egyptian Circumcision
Ancient  &  Modern
Little is known about the daily life of the Ancient Egyptians, but proof of circumcision abounds in temple reliefs. Early Egyptologists assumed that all Egyptian males were circumcised, but more recently both circumcised and uncircumcised penises have been found on the unwrapped mummies of Pharaohs. Modern Egyptologists have pondered about just whom among the Egyptians were circumcised and why.


Inscriptions and funerary papyri now show - quite clearly - that circumsicion was dedicated to the "demi god" (there isn't really a translatable word equivalent to 'Netjeru-Ta-sherit) Bes, protector of women in labour and guardian of infants. A temple relief at Soleb shows what appear to be foreskins being 'sacrificed' to Bes - this dates from the reign of Nebmaatre Amenhotep III (Tut's granddad). However, 250 or so years earlier, the battle-damaged body of king Sequenenre-Taa clearly shows circumcision took place.
I was try ing to get Ralph's opinion as to when he thought Moses was in Egypt, the Exodus, etc, to anchor Scripture in history.
I know there are 'anchor points' whith the history of the outside world which firmly place the events of the exile(s) and return, and, within a couple of years, the reigns of Rehoboham son of Solomon, but little conclusive dating to align the earlier points in Scripture's account (Though, tantalisingly, there ARE, in fact, a few very significant clues).

I had no idea the ancient Egyptian's practiced circumcision.
Do we know why?

Radiocarbon dating of the Santorini eruption (which could account for the parting of the Red Sea) was 1645-1600BC, although there is other archaeological evidence indicating it at 1500BC.

I'm afraid my knowledge of Egyptian archaeology is much more limited. I didn't think there was much evidence from Egypt of the Jewish slaves?

I wonder if Melechizedeck and his people were circumsised?

I would say that if there was a reason for the messenger of God to be born tto a circumsised family then there would at least have been some form of order relating from the time of Noah, and one would perhaps presume even further back.
Under them circumstances the order would be carried in different directions as population grew and formed peoples/tribes/nations.
It's not hard to invisage the practice being abandoned or kept up according to the amount of other traditions and beliefs kept or abandoned.

bernard (hug)

There is definate evidence of Semitic migration round about the mid dyn XX (c 2000 BC) see the wall paintings in the nobles tombs at Beni Hassan.
As for circumcision, there is a possible case in a mummy belonging to Amenemhet (c 1240 BC) a noble at Memphis, but definitve proof on the mummy of Sequenenre Taa (Dyn XVII, and seberal other dyn XVIII and XIX royal mummies.
Not all kings were circumcised.
As posted earlier and on the "cyber-bullying" thread, this seems to be equated with Bes, and was a rite of identification.
As the New Kingdom progressed, circumcision may be found in more mummies of the lower classes, till, by Ptolemaic times, it becomes moore common than not.
There is no evidence of 'FGM' female circumcision among Egyptian dead.

The first metion of YHWH is on an inscription dating from c1370 BC in the Temple of Amun at Karnak from the reign of Nebmaatre Amenhotep III (Tutankhamun's granddad).
The 'Merenptah stela' - dating from that Kings riegn in dyn XIX, gives the first recorded mention of Israel.

Do you have an opinion on that data that leads to a conclusion/theory?

bernard (hug)

A theory, bernie?
On what?

Does your post suggest the theory that Melechizedeck was an Egyptian?

Bernard (hug) Forum Index -> All faiths and none
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