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THINGS AS THEY ARE, WERE ARE TO COME
A Matter of Time
ANTHONY E. LARSON
seamless historical overview. Some of the first work done by 19th century Egyptologists was to create a comprehensive. It would thus function as a yardstick to correlate events in all the other contemporary ancient cultures in the Middle East and the Mediterranean – including those of the Hebrews or the Israelites – into a unified. though. WERE � ARE TO COME A Matter of Time Copyright © 2003 Anthony E. Rohl’s revised chronology yields many intriguing Egyptian records that correlate with the Hebrew account. Maverick British archeologist and historian. Archeologists and historians decided that since it seemed to be the most complete chronological record of ancient history. There seemed to be no evidence of the major . chronological record of Egyptian history. Egyptian history could be used to create a complete. chronological time line. you will find little archeological or historical evidence to confirm much of the Old Testament. Larson Based on a time line of Egyptian history created in the 19th century there has been no archeological evidence found that the people of the Old Testament existed. If you are a student of the scriptures. that biblical archeology and scholarly research would vindicate the Old Testament as accurate history have been repeatedly dashed. David Rohl. as well as the oldest and the most long lived.THINGS AS THEY ARE. Latter-day Saints included. then you have undoubtedly been frustrated by this fact. S earch as much as you like. has concluded that the old time line was wrong. Early hopes of religionists. scholars and historians found that archeological evidence seemed to contradict the historical time line of the Old Testament at almost every turn. once the Egyptian time line was firmly established. The sad reality was.
For example. dislocated and distorted other histories—including the Hebrew. under Joshua’s leadership. but in the wrong time. in effect.A Matter of Time 3 events of Israelite history. no evidence of the Exodus or the conquest of Canaan in the relevant archeological strata. these types of findings led many archeologists to doubt the historicity and the validity of a large part of the Bible. if not mere mythology. rigid chronology on all ancient history. There was little or no data confirming the existence of the Israelite nation in Egypt. These unorthodox scholars. The advent of modern science and scholasticism had been no help. casting considerable doubt on the accuracy of the Old Testament as history. But because of the conventional archeological dating of artifacts found at the site. Rohl and others suggested egregious errors in the Egyptian time line had. In fact. she found a city with massive walls that had crumbled due to a sizeable earthquake. . took Jericho after its impressive city wall fell. Most historians and scholars today consider most of the Old Testament to be conjured or borrowed history. when Kathryn Kenyon excavated the site of ancient Jericho. one less arbitrary and more accommodating of strong historical and archeological evidence for inter-cultural correlations that were rejected in the old. “been looking in the right places. A few maverick historians and archeologists suggested that their colleagues had. Kenyon surmised that the fabled walls of Jericho fell hundreds of years before Joshua’s arrival. Then a quiet revolution began. sought to create a new chronology. were left with little historical or archeological evidence to support the sacred record. Frustrated religionists.” That is. It was as if the Old Testament Hebrews or Israelites never existed—a disturbing state of affairs. Christians and Jews alike. as one researcher put it. Archeology would be no friend to religion. This was strongly suggestive of the biblical narrative that tells how the Israelite army. rigid chronological scheme. They recommend that documented connections or correlations in the historical and archeological record should be allowed to speak for themselves instead of forcing an illogical. as recorded in the Bible. such as British archeologist and historian David Rohl. they saw glaring flaws in the accepted chronology of ancient history.
we discover that much of the long sought for evidence of the validity of the Old Testament record has been right under our noses all the time. “Tutimaos: in his reign. we suddenly find a wealth of archaeological evidence corroborating the biblical account – some very revealing of ancient events. perhaps the most impressive event in Hebrew history. a blast of God smote us. Ramesees II was thought to be the Pharaoh of the Exodus. when he writes. the Exodus story suggests that Egypt was left defenseless since Pharaoh’s army was drowned in the Red Sea. What is more. For two centuries no evidence was found for the Israelites when looking in Egypt in the strata of the 19th Dynasty. for what cause I know not.” The “blast of God” in the time of Tutimaos (Tutimaeus or Didimose) can now be seen as the Exodus plagues. Amended chronologies now suggest that the Israelite sojourn in Egypt be placed in the 12th and 13th dynasties. In the new chronology. With that revision. for ‘plagues’ that swept the Nile Valley or for the decimation of the Egyptian armies. Evidence of the Exodus. So. emerges as the ruler whom Moses confronted. the corrected chronology gives new meaning to Josephus’ quote of the Egyptian scholar. . Thus. There was little evidence for a large population of Hebrew slaves. the Amalkites that did battle with the Israelites. people and situations. irrespective of any ‘established’ chronology. in most cases by hundreds of years. who were on their way to Canaan. The orthodox time line prevented us from seeing them because the dating created an illusion of history that was really a dislocation in time.A Matter of Time 4 The result is a fascinating. the Exodus occurred toward the end of the 13th Dynasty. has been lacking in profane history for this very reason. as the Old Testament relates. Manetho. went on to easily conquer Egypt and became known to history as the barbarous Hyksos. insightful chronological and historical revision. In the old chronology. Pharaoh Tutimaeus. The happy news for Latter-day Saints and religionists everywhere is that by allowing heretofore discounted correlations between Egyptian and Hebrew histories to stand alone. or Didimose. if there was one at all.
we reach the astounding conclusion that we have had in our possession a letter from Saul to Akhenaten. A magnificent palace with 12 pillars was excavated there and is thought to be Joseph’s. Indeed. mentioned in Exodus 1:11. warning . As it turns out. offering many fascinating historical details and creating a much more complete picture of Hebrew history in Egypt. Further. They paint a more complete picture of a tribal Palestine that corroborates the biblical picture described by the prophet Samuel. they tell of a king named Labayu. the most powerful Hebrew in Egyptian history. Additional evidence for that conclusion was a tomb found in the palace garden with the desecrated remains of a twice life-size statue with a uniquely Hebrew hairstyle – likely a statue of Joseph. and the Egyptian Labyrinth at Hawara with its thousands of storerooms was nothing less than Joseph’s administration center for the distribution of grain during the famine. meaning “the great lion of Yahweh. which was called Avaris. clay tablets found at Tell elAmarna over a century ago. which had been completely discounted under the old chronology.” who shows scant respect for Pharaoh in his communiqué to that Egyptian potentate. The same historical revision reveals evidence for the later Hebrew Monarchy in Palestine during the time of Saul. immediately after this disaster. This city. It now shines forth to illuminate the Old Testament accounts of that era and give it a historical context that has been utterly lacking heretofore. record the correspondence of the famous Pharaoh Akhenaten with rulers in Canaan.A Matter of Time 5 The new chronology allows a reassessment of the archeological and historical record. Egyptian history and archeology now confirm that Joseph became a vizier under Pharaoh Amenemhat III. had a large Israelite quarter. death pits discovered at Avaris attest to the deaths of the Egyptian first born during that plague. anciently. the Amarna letters. the remaining population left the city en masse – a startling corroboration of the Israelite Exodus following a terrible pestilence. who was also known as the “great lion of Yahweh.” Thus. The career of Labayu in the Amarna letters is strikingly similar to that of Saul. and contain information about the Israelite conquest of that area following the Exodus. David and Solomon. What is more. Near Tell ed-Daba in the Nile delta region. archeologists excavated a large city beneath the city of Ramesses.
The reputations of some eminent scholars and wellestablished academic careers are at stake in this debate. For more essays from this series: http://mormonprophecy.blogspot. prominent biblical characters of that era. commander of David’s army. Moreover. His contemporaries in Egypt were Horemheb and Seti I.com/ For online classes.mormonprophecy.A Matter of Time 6 off an Egyptian Pharaoh. Solomon is now seen to rule in the Late Bronze Age. Ayab is Joab. videos. for over a century without recognizing it for what it is. a period of wealth and prosperity in the Levant. depicts a king on his throne flaked by two sphinxes with his queen before him. An ivory piece excavated at Megiddo. which the Bible tells us was built up by Solomon. Dadua is a form of the name David. and Yishuya is Jesse (Yishay in Hebrew). newsletters and published books exploring this material in depth: http://www. Naturally.com/ Your questions or comments are welcome: anthonyelarson@gmail. conventional historians and archeologists hotly contest such notions.com . Any Latter-day Saint wishing to better understand the characters found in the Old Testament and the history of God’s dealings with Israel and its prophets would do well to inform themselves of the revelations coming from these avant-garde archeologists and historians working on the revision of ancient history chronology. We can now also see that instead of reigning in the impoverished Early Iron Age where conventional chronology puts him. the Amarna letters yield dozens of names recognizable to scholars as equivalents to familiar. David’s father. This could very well be Solomon and the Egyptian queen (I Kings 3:1) since Solomon is said to have had a throne flanked with lions.
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