Course Work On Archaeology And The Academic Study Of The Bible

Published: 2021-06-22 00:19:07
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Category: City, Literature, Bible, Middle East, History, Evidence, Egypt

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- Who was Manetho? When did he live and write? What is the importance of his writings for our understanding of the ancient rulers of Egypt?

Manetho was a priest and an Egyptian historian from Sebennytos during the Ptolemaic era. Manetho lived during the 3rd century BC. The historian was from Rome and wrote his work in the 200 AD. Manetho wrote an immigrant success story from a patriotic perspective, his story resulted to a national tragedy. Manetho described a brutal and massive invasion of Egypt by eastern foreigners whom he called the “Hykos” meaning the rulers of the foreign land. In his work, the historian established that the Hykos settled in Avaris a city near the delta.

Among many Egyptian authors who wrote in Greek, Manetho holds an explicit position in his work because he wrote in the early third century a time that many authors had not began writing. Manetho’s work was also very important in a sense that he had interest in the religion and the history of the ancient Egypt. The author in his original work presents a great significance and importance in a sense that, there is a chronological sequence of events in the Egyptian history that can be easily derived from the work of his writings. Furthermore, Manetho’s work provides an estimate of reigns, and the stories about the rulers, presenting the informal information and official records that came into his attention during that era. Manetho’s work is also important because it had a great influence on religion and biblical studies. His work written in a chronological manner provides a framework for discerning biblical events such as the exodus from Egypt and the chronology of civilization from the time of Noah.

- Who were the Hyksos? When did they live in the Nile Delta?

The Hyksos were Asian people who invaded the eastern Nile Delta of Egypt during the twelfth dynasty. The Hyksos first came to Egypt during the eleventh dynasty; they came to power in the thirteenth dynasty. During the fifteenth dynasty, they were ruling the lower part of Egypt, by the end of seventeenth century they were expelled.

Traditionally, the Hyksos practiced horse burials, their main idol became the desert god and Egyptian storm. Although most of the Hyksos names appear Semitic, they included the Hurrians, who were under the influence and rule of the Indo-Europeans. The Hyksos are known for having brought much technical advancement to Egypt, these include foreign loan words and musical instruments. The change they brought to Egypt affected the techniques form, pottery weaving, and bronze working, they also brought along new breeds of crops and animals to Egypt; they introduced the compound bow, horse, and chariot, and improved fortification skills. A number of propositions about the ethnic identity of the Hyksos have been made; many archeologists describe them as multi-ethnic. Some of them came to Egypt as warlords seeking employment; some came as agricultural workers, skilled tradesmen, doctors, diplomats and, some as lawmakers.

- In Exodus 1:11 there is a reference to the Hebrews building a supply city called "Rameses" (also spelled "Raamses"). According to scholars who have attempted to date the Exodus, what is the significance of this name?

The Remeses city according to some scholars is described as a store-city; the scholars mean that the city was a supply depot. The city was located at Tell el-Daba in the eastern Delta according to the ancient archeological evidence presented. The Pelusiac stem of river Nile flowed though the site where the city was once located, additionally the city was significant in that it was a military and a commercial center.

- During the reign of Ramesses II in the thirteenth century BCE, what was the political relationship between the people of Canaan and the Egyptians? (see p. 60)

In the thirteenth century during the reign of Remenses II, Egypt was at the peak of its authority (p. 60); its power was very dominant to the world. Egypt ruled the entire Israelites at that moment, the Israelites had been enslaved during this time, and they were politically weak. During the reign of Remenses II, slavery was seen an acceptable spot in the Egyptian political system. Although this political system was extremely controversial, slavery was a very necessary element to the Egyptians.
The Egyptian grip over Canaan was very strong, the Egyptian strongholds were spread to all over the country, and the Egyptians officials were solely the ones who administered the affairs of the entire region. Canaan was the utmost significant to the regime of Remenses II.

- For the study of the Hebrew Bible, what is the importance of the stele describing the campaign of Pharaoh Merneptah at the end of the thirteenth century BCE?

Merneptah Stele is a pillar that was erected by Pharaoh Merneptah; the pillar recorded pharaoh’s conquests in the thirteenth century BCE. The Merneptah Stele proves that there existed a distinct cultural group called Israel that lived in Palestine before the 1200, that was well known by the Egyptians as “Israelites.” It also provides direct archeological evidence for the existence of Israelites in Canaan; stele is the oldest extra biblical text to point out Israel. The Israelites according to the archeological evidence probably may have been to Palestine before 1200; Merneptah Stele shows that this was actually true.

Merneptah Stele is very significant in the study of Hebrew Bible; it provides a direct affirmative proof that the term Israel was an identity name in Palestine highlands in the parlance of the late bronze. Additionally, it supports the Hebrew bible in that it provides evidence that those who bore the name Israelites actually lived in the region of Canaan where the state of Israel came up, , the biblical characterization of this population as socially linked and politically decentralized as stated by both the Hebrew bible and the text in Merneptah Stele. Furthermore, the text described the campaign of Pharaoh Merneptah, it explains the negative Egyptian campaign into Canaan, and the text indicated that there was a certain ethnic group already in Canaan (Israelite).

- What is the importance of the Saite Dynasty in Egypt to Finkelstein and Silberman's dating of the Exodus narrative?

Saite Dynasty is very important to Finkelstein and Silberman's dating of exodus narrative since it aligns well with the exodus story. The two archeologists used Saite Dynasty as proof that exodus really took place. From these and many other evidences, Finkelstein and Silberman suggest that exodus narrative reached its ended in the 26th Dynasty, first half of the 6th century and the second half of the seventh century BCE. Furthermore, the Saite Dynasty is significant to these two archeologists because it revealed the ancient traditions that do support that actually the exodus happened.

- Describe three details that are used to support the contention that the story of the Exodus was written in the seventh century BCE.

- One of the most important thing that supports that exodus was written in the seventh century is the Merneptah Stele. Before the discovery of Merneptah Stele, historians and scholars placed exodus and entry into Canaan much later. From the evidence, it is clear that Israel were already in Canaan the time of Merneptah.

- The Sinai and exodus traditions were related, archeological surveys in these regions reveal evidence of meager remains of hunter-gatherers (p. 43). From the archeological evidence retrieved from Sinai Peninsula, there were evidence of Patrol activity.

- Until the seventh century, there were no archeological details that had been found to prove that exodus had actually happened. In the seventh century, the first evidence was found and that was the time the exodus story was written.

Works Cited

Finkelstein, Israel, and Neil Asher Silberman. The Bible Unearthed: Archaeology's New Vision
of Ancient Isreal and the Origin of Sacred Texts. Simon and Schuster, 2002.

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