Moses: The End of an Era

Hear, O Israel: [b]The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.   Deuteronomy 6:4-7

The books of Numbers and Deuteronomy deal largely with laws, both civil and ceremonial, the size of the population and their holdings along with the overall narrative mixed in. Suffice it to say that there are conflicts and battles during the 40 years of wandering in the wilderness. It was this time that God was working to grow them from being a population of slaves into a nation and a fighting army.

They were going to need that training!

Nephilim-Series-3-v_2The Land of Canaan was populated by giants. Remember that the 12 spies that originally went in there reported that they seemed like grasshoppers compared to these giants. These were the product of fallen angels mating with human women, an abomination that God wanted wiped out. He wasn’t being unnecessarily cruel. He wanted the land cleansed of evil.

Unfortunately, Israel did not just complain to God, they also turned their backs on God during the 40 years of wandering to worship the false gods of some of those people. Tempted by the women of the land, they were enticed away and began worshipping the false god Baal.

Eventually they got themselves squared away enough when it was time to officially go in and occupy Canaan and clean it out. It was also time for Moses to pass his role over to Joshua. There’s a review in Deuteronomy of everything that happened since Egypt. I found it very interesting that, after the Ten Commandments and countless laws for different offerings as well as civil laws, we find just one law that is highlighted. It’s the law about love that is quoted above.

Jesus recalled this in Matthew 21:37-40, saying, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

Before moving on, let’s take a retrospective. I’ve been writing a timeline starting with Creation and counting the years since. I call the timeline “Creation Plus” or CP.

Moses BabyMoses was born in 2585 CP. By God’s grace he was found by Pharaoh’s barren daughter and adopted into that household. He became a prince of Egypt and a renowned general in that army. He became feared and hated, both for his successes and for his true heritage. When he killed an Egyptian task master, he gave Pharaoh and his court reason to kill him, so he fled to Midian where he met and married his wife, Zipporah.

God called to him from the burning bush and sent him to Egypt to lead the Hebrews out of Egypt. Time references in the Bible put this at about 2665-2666 CP with the Exodus happening in 2666 CP. They crossed the Red Sea (Yam Suph) and the desert to reach Mt. Sinai in 2666 CP and stayed through to at least 2667 CP.

After that they wandered, battling at least a couple of belligerent kings they came across as well as enduring the poisonous snakes until God finally directs to possess Canaan. The land is divide in advance, each tribe of Israel getting its portion.

Bronze Serpent on a PoleIt was only about a year when, in 2668 CP that they griped against God again. He sent poisonous snakes into their midst and the instructed Moses to erect a bronze serpent on a pole; anyone bitten could look on it and live.

2706 CP was the big year when they could finally possess the land of Canaan. That’s also when Aaron died. He stood by Moses side before Pharaoh to speak when Moses couldn’t. Moses gave Joshua his blessing and then ascended Mt. Nebo.. God showed him the land he would not enter. Moses died there, but let’s hear it from the source. This is one of the my favorite passages in the Bible. Is among the most poignant. Deuteronomy 34 –

Then Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, which is across from Jericho. And the Lord showed him all the land of Gilead as far as Dan, all Naphtali and the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, all the land of Judah as far as the [a]Western Sea, the South, and the plain of the Valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees, as far as Zoar. Then the Lord said to him, “This is the land of which I swore to give Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants.’ I have caused you to see it with your eyes, but you shall not cross over there.”

So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LordAnd He buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth Peor; but no one knows his grave to this day. Moses was one hundred and twenty years old when he died. His [b]eyes were not dim nor his natural vigor [c]diminished. And the children of Israel wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days. So the days of weeping and mourning for Moses ended

10 But since then there has not arisen in Israel a prophet like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face11 in all the signs and wonders which the Lord sent him to do in the land of Egypt, before Pharaoh, before all his servants, and in all his land, 12 and by all that mighty power and all the great terror which Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.

The Exodus – Battle By the Rock

Exodus CaseNow Amalek came and fought with Israel in Rephidim. And Moses said to Joshua, “Choose us some men and go out, fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in my hand.”…11 And so it was, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed; and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. 12 But Moses’ hands became [e]heavy…And Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. 13 So Joshua defeated Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.

14 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Write this for a memorial in the book and recount it in the hearing of Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.” 15 And Moses built an altar and called its name, [f]The-Lord-Is-My-Banner;   Exodus 17, Selected Verses

The Israelites can’t seem to catch a break. All they wanted was to get out of Egypt and live their lives, but noooo! They are chased through the Sinai Peninsula, take a nerve-wracking trek between miraculously free-standing walls of water, almost die of thirst and hunger, and now?

The Amalekites attack them. It seems they don’t like strangers passing through and pick a fight with Moses and company. You might remember this story of how Israel would be overcoming the Amalekites as long as Moses kept his hands raised to God in supplication. When he grew tired and his arms lowered, the battle turned against them, so Aaron and Hur held them up for him until the fight was won. Moses then built an altar of thanks to God atop the mound where he had stood during the battle.

This account is in Exodus 17, the same chapter as the account of water coming from the 60 meter split stone, so the battle happened right in that area.

Mt Sinai View

The Exodus Case, Pg. 316. View from Mt. Sinai. Blue area is colored in to show dry lake bed as if it is filled.  Plain beyond.

Recall this picture from the last article showing how there was a huge plain sufficient for all of Israel. There’s plenty of room for a pitched battle, as you can see in the picture. All around this possible battlefield are small, rounded stones. They are well rounded, weighing anywhere from about half a pound to a pound. Some have a bit of a groove around them, which would allow them to be fitted nicely into a sling. So this plain is littered with stones easily thrown by hand or slingshot.Amalekite Battle Stones

You’ll recall from my 7/25/2018 article regarding the Yam Suph (Red Sea) crossing that, according to Josephus, the Israelites were able to take weapons from the dead Egyptians who washed up on shore. They may have made use of these in the Amalekite battle, but likely made use of slings and stones they were more familiar with.

Amalekite Battle Plain

The Exodus Case, Pg. 279.  Closer look at possible battlefield.  Note the trees and scrub growth

These stones were probably part of the Amalektie “arsenal” also. Remember that Egypt was a very wealthy country after the riches piled up by Joseph during the famine. Smaller kingdoms probably did not have the resources to amass large numbers of metallic weapons and stilled relied on less sophisticated weaponry.

There is also a raised mound a few hundred meters from the split stone where Moses could have stood and watched the battle, arms raised to God with the help of Aaron and Hur. What points us to this particular mound?

There’s an ancient altar on this mound just as described in Exodus 17.

Amalekite Altar

The Exodus Case, Pg.284.  Moses’ altar?

So far we have found a route through the Sinai Peninsula, through a gorge, emptying into the Nuweiba Peninsula, which leads to an underwater land bridge straight across to Saudi Arabia and a beach head large enough to accommodate the fleeing Israelis. After that we found a collection of palm trees surrounding twelve bitter springs, again as described in Exodus, then a 60-65 foot tall rock atop a hill, split in half, and heavily eroded stone leading down from it.

Now we have an apparent battlefield and altar near said split rock, again just as described in Exodus. So I ask again; how many coincidences does it take to make a connection?

Moses – The Midian Connection

When Pharaoh heard of this, he tried to kill Moses, but Moses fled from Pharaoh and went to live in Midian, where he sat down by a well.   Exodus 2:15

It is time for a Middle East geography lesson. We’ll start with a few basics.

The Red Sea. The ancient texts do not translate this body of water into “The Red Sea.” The name is Yam Suph, which has no definite translation. “The Red Sea” was something simply settled on and has been used for centuries. If the connection between “The Red Sea” and “Yam Suph” is tenuous at best, we shouldn’t be dead set on The Red sea on the map as being the place to which Yam Suph refers.

The Sinai Peninsula is so named, because that is where the mountain named Mt. Sinai has been traditionally located. However, the traditional Mt. Sinai bears no resemblance to the description in the Bible. While it seems impossible to misplace a mountain, the events related in Exodus happened from 2585 – 2666 CP or roughly 3400 years ago.

If I can forget where I put my keys last night, I can see how a mountain’s location might be confused after 3000+ years. I can also tell you that the exact location of The Battle of Fallen Timbers in NW Ohio in 1794 was only relocated in recent years.

So Moses fled to Midian after his faux paus of killing an Egyptian slave master. Where is Midian? Well, there are no Welcome to Midian signs extant, so we need to use the Bible and, of course, Josephus to help us. Josephus tells us that Midianite merchants were from Arabia and that Midian was located on the Red Sea coast.

Sinai Peninsula 2Looking at a map, it’s easy to see that The Red Sea is south of the Sinai Peninsula with the Gulf of Suez due west while The Gulf of Aqaba and Saudi Arabia lie to the east.  Technically, both gulfs are a part of The Red Sea, so the crossing could have been across either gulf. But then remember that in the original text “Yam Suph” has no definitive translation. All we know for certain is that it is the body of water the Children of Israel crossed to escape the Egyptian army.

One hint for Midian’s location comes from Genesis 25:5. It tells us that Midian was the son of Abraham and Ketura who settled in the land of the East.

Another thing to consider is that Moses was escaping Egypt, which had holdings on the Sinai Peninsula. He definitely left the African continent, our modern Sinai Peninsula was a poor option with Egyptian occupying forces there. That leaves Saudi Arabia, or simply “Arabia” as Josephus puts it.

This is where Moses meets his wife and where he encounters the famous burning bush on Mt. Horeb, which is also known as Mt. Sinai and where the Children of Israel came to after leaving Egypt.

NEXT – Let My People Go!

Moses in Egypt – Cont’d

When Pharaoh heard of this, he tried to kill Moses, but Moses fled from Pharaoh and went to live in Midian…   Exodus 2:15

I want to continue with Moses here and present the evidence Dr. Moller gives us in his book, The Exodus Case, concerning Moses being a part of Egyptian history under another name. There is one thing to reiterate from before; Egyptian royalty regularly underwent name changes as their position and responsibilities changed within their government. Recall my earlier article regarding the Joseph/Imhotep connection, also from Dr. Moller’s book. Imhotep was known by more than one name.

Egyptian Succesion Chart

The Exodus Case, Page 126

Let’s walk through the above chart:

 

Thutmosis I was co-regent with the Pharaoh Ahmose who decreed all male Jews must die when born. His daughter Nefure is who adopted Moses when her maid found him in the basket floating in the Nile. Dr. Moller’s theory is that Moses – who we theorize was Senmut – ascended to co-regent with Thutmosis I, who became Pharaoh (note color coding). Thutmosis I became Amenhotep I, and Moses became Thutmosis II.

So Senmut = Thutmosis II. This is who mysteriously disappeared and whose statues were defaced by removing the nose, killing him in the afterlife. Moses had fled after killing an Egyptian slave master, likewise disappearing.

His mother, Nefure, became Hatshepsut, but a replacement had to be found for Moses/Senmut/Thutmosis II. According to Egyptian records, a 22 year old from Memphis replaced him and became Thutmosis III. He later became the Pharaoh Amenhotep II, and his co-regent, Thutmosis IV became the Pharaoh who refused to “Let My people go.”

Hopefully, this line of succession is clear, and we now can focus on Thutmosis II.

From The Exodus Case – Near to Thebes there is a beautiful building called “Dei El Bahri”, which according to this hypothesis, is the temple Moses/Thutmosis II built for his mother, Nefure. Above this building there is a grave with a statue that was never completely finished.

Dei El Bahri

Dei El Bahri

 

That statue depicts a mother holding a child on her lap just as the pictures we saw earlier of Nefure holding Moses/Senmut. Dr. Moller’s theory holds that this is also Nefure holding Senmut. Indeed, those names are found within that grave site. The entire complex was likely started when Moses was about 18, which is probably when he was appointed co-regent.

There are two mummies found there in a separate chamber with the names Ramose and Hatnofer. Dr. Moller believes these are the Egyptian names of Moses biological father and mother, Amram and Jochabed, respectively. The male, Ramose received a modest treatment for his burial while the female, Hatnofer, was mummified in royal fashion.

Here’s the real question: why would a man and woman of apparently different social status be ultimately entombed together in such a royal setting?

If Moses/Senmut’s father died before he became Thutmosis II, he would be given a modest mummification. If, when he became Thutmosis II, his mother then died, he could command that she be mummified as royalty; he’d have that authority. Otherwise, who were these people to Senmut anyway that they should be entombed in his adopted mother’s temple?

So far, the facts fit the theory that Moses was indeed Senmut/Thutmosis II.

But there is more!

This tomb is unfinished. When one enters the burial chamber that was apparently being prepared for Senmut/Thutmosis II, it is unfinished. It has every appearance of a work site that was left when the shift ended, and no one ever returned. There are also plans there for further work on the tomb in inscription on the walls.  Additionally, much of the tomb was destroyed quite deliberately.

Senmuts Tomb

From The Exodus Case, Page 121

 

Also, Egyptians in tombs like this are typically depicted with their parents. In this tomb, Senmut/Thutmosis II is depicted, not with Nefure, but with Ramose and Hatnofer! This gives apparent confirmation that they were his true parents even while he was building this huge temple/burial complex for his adopted mother, Nefure.

Last time I made mention that there was s surviving statue of Senmut without the nose broken off. It is an aquiline, Jewish nose. I found the picture I wanted to include in the last article and am including it below. For comparison, a digital recreation of Tutankhamen is included on the left. King Tut, by the way, has an important role in all of this. If you want to try to figure it out before I write about it, everything you need to know is in the chart above!

Senmuts NoseIntrigued? The book is available on Amazon. I’d also recommend getting the two DVDs that Amazon will suggest you buy along with it. I got them and am very glad I did. The book is 400+ pages with tons of documentation, but VERY readable.

Moses in Egypt

Exodus Case“Thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘Let My people go…’” Exodus 5:1

The following is based on “The Exodus Case” by Dr. Lennart Moller.

Dr. Moller does an extremely thorough job in his book. I’ll give the high points here.

Moses was adopted by Pharaoh’s daughter, who was childless. The question becomes whether there is a Pharaoh during the time of Moses who had but one daughter who was childless and adopted a son.

Senmut with Princess Nefrua (Thebes, Egypt), c BCE, granite block statue.Thutmosis I/Amenhotep fits that description. He had a daughter, Nefure/Hatshepsut (depending upon their age and changing status within government and religion, different names were adopted). There are statues of Nefure holding a baby boy. The inscriptions name him as Senmut. The child of the sculpture wears a royal ornament, indicating his status as heir to the throne. Senmut is translated as “mother’s brother.”

That may seem an odd name for son…unless the son was adopted. Again, I’ll leave the details for you to cover in the book, but essentially royal succession was heavily tied to religion and the inherited deity of each Pharaoh. In order for an adopted son to be legitimately of the line of a Pharoah with an only daughter, his relationship to the gods had to be direct. Senmut was given the status of being the son of a god. His mother by way of her father was also a daughter of the god, thus making them, theologically speaking, siblings.

In order to legitimize Senmut for the throne, they had to start the “propaganda” very early to ensure he was accepted when he ascended the throne.

Moses was adopted and in line for the throne as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. His scenario was exactly that of Senmut. The parallel continues. According to the Roman historian, Josephus, Moses was a general of the army, highly educated at court, and extremely successful. The royal court began first to envy, then fear him. They knew he was adopted and not Egyptian by blood.

Moses KillsRecall, then, Moses murdered an Egyptian slave master, was found out, and had to run off. He had given his enemies at court a reason to want him killed. Normally, one might think that a great general would get a wrist slap. However, with a court full of enemies Moses knew they would label him a traitor and use this excuse to kill him.

Guess what happened in Senmut’s case? That’s right; he was disinherited. There is no record of what he might have done, but records show he was suddenly stripped of his privileged status and disappeared under mysterious circumstances. And what do Egyptian’s do when a government official falls out of favor? They deface or destroy all statues and monuments for that person. Almost every statue of Senmut has had its nose broken off. That was a way to symbolically kill someone by removing their ability to breathe or taking away their spirit.Senmut No Nose

Here are other facts known of Senmut that parallel Moses: he was of humble birth, not royal lineage. At the time of his disappearance, Senmut was effectively ruler of Egypt (Moses was co-ruler when he escaped). Senmut’s shrine did not have the customary funerary feast scenes, but instead depicts him being embraced by the crocodile god (Moses was taken from the crocodile-infested Nile River). There is a surviving statue of Senmut. It shows him having an “aquiline” nose, which is not an Egyptian feature but a Caucasian/Jewish one.

Altogether, Dr. Moller cites 35 qualities shared by both Moses and Senmut. His discussion includes details of the Egyptian religions and its part in the royal line, the meaning of names and why Egyptian rulers were assigned different names in their lifetime. Statistically, such parallels would be unlikely in two separate individuals, making the theory that Moses and Senmut are the same man very compelling.

Intrigued? The book is available on Amazon. I’d also recommend getting the two DVDs that Amazon will suggest you buy along with it. I got them and, boy howdy, I’m glad I did. The book is 400+ pages with tons of documentation, but VERY readable.

The Exodus Case – Mt. Sinai

“The Exodus Case” by Dr. Lennart Moller – Book Review, Part Seven of Seven

“16 Now the glory of the Lord rested on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days. And on the seventh day He called to Moses out of the midst of the cloud. 17 The sight of the glory of the Lord was like a consuming fire on the top of the mountain in the eyes of the children of Israel.” Exodus 24:16-17

There is a traditional Mt. Sinai on the Sinai Peninsula. Because of this tradition, many people believe it is truly God’s Mountain. However, it does not match the description of His mountain as told in Exodus.

Again, Dr. Moller relies on his theory that Exodus is literally true in order to find where it leads us. We’ve already seen that it appears that the Red Sea crossing was not at the Red Sea proper, but across the Gulf of Aqaba. That places Mt. Sinai in Saudi Arabia, which agrees with biblical references to it being in Arabia (St. Paul). Josephus also places Mt. Sinai in Arabia.

The question becomes whether there is a mountain and surrounding area that precisely match the description in Exodus. Dr. Moller points to such a location, named Jabal Al Lawz. It is a mountain ridge in Saudi Arabia, which has a number of distinct characteristics as well as ruins, making it worth serious consideration as the true Mt. Sinai. Following are points which I will try to describe as briefly as I can.

The Israelites were attacked by the Amalekites as they approached Mt. Sinai. The battle was on a broad plain near the mountain. You might recall the story, because Moses had to keep his arms raised to God for them to prevail. As he tires, Aaron and Hur help hold his arms up. Such a plain is west of Jabal Al Lawz, as well as a rise for Moses to oversee the battle.

After the battle, Moses erects an altar to God, commemorating the victory. An ancient altar exists on the site.

In the same place, the Israelites complained to Moses about their thirst. God commands Moses to strike a large rock, which splits, and water pours forth. You might recall from an earlier post, the low-end estimate as to the size of their population is 2 million plus livestock. The flow of water had to be much more than a trickle or gurgle. At Jabal Al Lawz there is a 6 meter high rock, which is split through the middle, top to bottom. You can easily see right through that split. At its base are stones heavily eroded by water. Leading out from there are large wadis, which are dried up ponds or lakes. The area of the wadis appear large enough to have supplied such a population. The erosion starts at the rock.  There is no rise of land above it.  It is the tallest thing in the immediate area.

Mt. Sinai also appears in another biblical story. When Elijah does battle with the priests of Baal, God strikes with fire to ignite Elijah’s offering. Shortly after that, Elijah flees for his life and takes refuge in a cave on Mt. Sinai. There is such a cave that could be lived in at Jabal Al Lawz with a commanding view of the plain. You can also see the dried wadis from there.

The Israelites encamped around the east side of Mt. Sinai. Sure enough, on the east side of Jabal Al Lawz is evidence of an ancient encampment. The type of tents used then was supported by a center pole with a circle of rocks anchoring the base of the tent. Many such rock circles are found in this area, along with – wait for it – Egyptian style millstones for grinding grain.

God told Moses not to let anyone touch the mountain, lest they die. At regular intervals around the base of the mountain are found stones with a pictograph; the outline of a sandal with the laces laid out to the side. It was a common sign from Egypt that the place beyond was considered holy. Take off your sandals to enter, or Do Not Enter. It’s essentially a sign barrier telling everyone to Keep Out.

Josephus states that Mt. Sinai was the highest in the area. At 2200+ feet, Jabal Al Lawz towers over its neighbors.

There is a ruin of low walls in a configuration and height to possibly have been the altar God tells Moses to erect for a massive animal sacrifice. It was to be a low altar so that they wouldn’t have to climb steps to it, “…that thy nakedness be not discovered thereon.” In other words, so that no one could see up their tunics. Archeologists have said that they must be the ruins of the buildings. If so, where are the rest of the walls? If they crumbled, where are they? Other compelling characteristics of the site:
• The stones are all uncut, as specified by God
• It’s original height is estimated at about 1 meter, which would be about right.
• Archeologists have detected large amounts of “biological material” within the ruin. People don’t slaughter animals indoors, but they do at an altar.

While Moses was on the mountain, the Israelites cast the Golden Calf and put it on an altar. Visible from a cleft in the mountain as one descends is the plain of the encampment and a large pile of natural rocks, which could have served as a base for an altar. Before you think that this is a reach just because they are easily seen on the descent, inscribed on these rocks are Egyptian styled images of cows. Egyptians held cows sacred. It follows that the Israelites would use what they knew.

The Bible also describes a plateau part way up where Moses gathered with 70 elders before going to the top to meet with God. Just such a plateau exists on Jabal Al Lawz with enough room to comfortably accommodate 70+ people.

The very top of the ridge is blackened, essentially burnt to a crisp. This is a region that’s mostly desert. There is no vegetation to catch fire, no fuel for such a thoroughly burnt area.  This is not an area of volcanic activity in any time period.  But…

“Now Mount Sinai was completely in smoke, because the Lord descended upon it in fire. Its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked greatly.” Exodus 19:18

In addition, Dr. Moller notes that “The local population relate that even today Jabal Al Lawz (Mt. Horeb) is known by the inhabitants as “Jebel Musa,” which means ‘Moses’ Mount.’” Page 324.

These short paragraphs do no justice to the detail Dr. Moller presents in The Exodus Case. He is exceptionally careful to not make exclusive claims that he has definitely found the Red Sea crossing, Mt. Sinai, and more. He simply states his hypothesis that Exodus is literally true and proceeds to gather evidence to see where it leads. He invites readers to draw their own conclusions. He does this with 400+ pages of text and hundreds of color pictures.

Intrigued? The book is available on Amazon. I’d also recommend getting the two DVDs that Amazon will suggest you buy along with it. I got them and I’m glad I did. The book is 400+ pages with tons of documentation, but VERY readable.

The Exodus Case – Pharaoh’s Army

“The Exodus Case” by Dr. Lennart Moller – Book Review, Part Six of Seven

“28 Then the waters returned and covered the chariots, the horsemen, and all the army of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them. Not so much as one of them remained… 30 So the Lord saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore.” Exodus 14, selected verses.

I had heard that evidence of chariot wheels had been found on a land bridge in the Middle East, possibly being the remains of Pharaoh’s army from Exodus. Not wanting to go off half-cocked, I did an internet search. That search is how I found Dr. Lennart Moller and his book, The Exodus Case.

He has not disappointed with his thorough, scientific method. For what it’s worth, I have two college degrees and I know a little about scholarly research and writing. Dr. Moller reads to me like the real deal, and he has a very serious pedigree as a scientist. See the first part of this series, “The Exodus Case – Part One.”

First, coral doesn’t just start growing. It must attach to something. That’s why people clean large ships out and sink them to start a reef growing. Coral reefs don’t start out of nowhere; they need something to attach to. Hence the ships. In the Gulf of Aqaba, Dr. Moller notes that it has coral reefs like most other bodies of water. But there is one area where there is coral, and it has not formed into a reef. He makes the observation that, on the land bridge off the Nuweiba Peninsula, coral is scattered about like someone tossed out a bunch of garbage. It lies here and there with no discernable pattern. A closer examination reveals what may have happened.

From Dr. Moller: “If skeletal parts lie open and accessible…then corals settle and begin to grow. This can make it very difficult to identify…skeletal parts. There is a large quantity of possible…parts at the place of the crossing, but they are piled up together…which makes the precise identification of individual…parts almost impossible. But there are also several examples of skeletal parts which can be identified.”

On page 248 he has pictures of a piece of coral shaped like a human femur lying next to an actual femur. They are identical. He has other pictures where he can discern human skulls, ribs, spines, and more. One picture on page 251 happens to have captured a fish next to “coral-ized” skeletons to provide scale (no pun intended). He estimates these remains to show no less than 3 individuals (remember, he’s an MD). There are many such identifiable corals on the land bridge. And that isn’t all.

There are identifiable skeletal parts of cows or oxen, which Pharaoh’s army would have used to both transport and be food. There are also parts that can be identified as pieces of horse skeletons.

So we have coral that has apparently grown over parts of skeletons and taken on their shape, which allows them to be identified. We have beasts of burden, which an army would require to supply and feed themselves. We have the horses to pull Pharaoh’s chariots. Oh, yeah! That reminds me.

He found coral in the shapes of chariot wheels. How does he decide that they are shaped as such? Well, on several, not all, but on enough coral shapes you can actually count the spokes. Because technology does improve over time and designs change, Dr. Moller can trace those wheels back to Egyptian chariot wheel designs. There are a variety; 4, 6, and 8 spokes. Why the diversity in one army? Because they wouldn’t just trash a perfectly good chariot because of the new number of spokes. Plus, they would take the chariots of those they defeated in war, adding them to the Egyptian “fleet.” These assertions are evident in Egyptian ruins.

Dr. Moller’s extensive research on chariot wheel design shows that the designs found on the land bridge off the Nuweiba Peninsula match the designs in use by Egypt and its conquests at the time of the Exodus.

One can also make out shapes resembling axles, hub caps (yes, Egyptians had them), and possible pieces of chariot cabs. By being able to make out details on some and very regular, geometric shapes on others, it seems safe to conclude that the corals have grown over man-made objects. Think on it; when do you recall ever seeing a coral reef that had straight lines, right angles, and circular formations? Right. Me neither.

So we have wheels, regular geometric shapes, and identifiable skeletal pieces, along with a huge jumble of coral that hasn’t grown like coral anywhere else in the world. Add it all together, and you have something that looks like the remains of an Egyptian army that got caught without its floaties on.

Let me stress once more, Dr. Moller is very conservative in his assessments and makes no absolute claim that he has definitely found Pharaoh’s army – or anything else discussed so far. He states his theories and presents his evidence. He does the research and analysis, steps back, and (figuratively speaking) says, “Well, it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck. Do you think…?”

Intrigued? The book is available on Amazon. I’d also recommend getting the two DVDs that Amazon will suggest you buy along with it. I got them and, I’m glad I did. The book is 400+ pages with tons of documentation, but VERY readable.

The Exodus Case – Crossing the Red Sea

“The Exodus Case” by Dr. Lennart Moller – Book Review, Part Five of Seven

“But lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it. And the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea.” Exodus 14:16

Now for The Exodus itself. Dr. Moller goes through a very good discussion of where the Israelites had settled just outside of Egypt in Goshen and why. He also gives an estimate of how many Israelites there were at the time of the Exodus. He arrived at a figure of about 2,000,000 people and cautions that this is a conservative number, based on biblical statements and expected demographics of such a population. Other studies have come up with a number as high as 6,000,000. Throughout his book, Dr. Moeller consistently displays such conservatism to avoid overstating his theories.

So, after the final plague sent by God – the death of all firstborn in Egypt – you have approximately 2,000,000 people leaving Egypt and heading across the wilderness to a body of water that they will cross without getting wet. There are several routes they could have taken to get to any of the proposed sites of the Red Sea crossing. But there is only one place around the Sinai Peninsula that will allow for 2,000,000 people to stage themselves for such a mass crossing and have another such site on the opposite side for them to regroup. There is only one place which requires a route with the landscape Exodus describes.

By the way, let’s drop the name “Red Sea.” The name in Hebrew is Yam Suph, and, after a few thousand years, no one quite knows what that place name would translate into. Dr. Moller includes a discussion of that problem. For now, let’s forge ahead with where Dr. Moller theorizes to be the location of that famous crossing.

From Dr. Moller: “Wadi Watir is the valley between the mountains going…down to the Nuweiba peninsula…(it) is very flat with no obstacles and is surrounded by high mountain ridges.”

“Now the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 2 “Speak to the children of Israel, that they turn and camp before Pi Hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, opposite Baal Zephon; you shall camp before it by the sea. 3 For Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, ‘They are bewildered by the land; the wilderness has closed them in.’” Exodus 14:1-3

The mountains enclosing the Wadi Watir would have closed in on the Israelites, trapping them on the Nuweiba Peninsula, just as described in Exodus. Nuweiba is large enough to easily accommodate a population of 2,000,000 people and their livestock. It is located on the Gulf of Aqaba on the east side of the Sinai Peninsula facing Saudi Arabia.

The ancient historian Josephus, drawing on primary sources no longer available to us, also notes how “The encampment was surrounded on two sides by mountains which extended right out to the sea and could not be passed.”

The Nuweiba Peninsula is also a prime site for the crossing, because it’s shore is the only spot with a shallow enough grade that people could walk down to the bottom. Opposite, there is another large, flat area to accommodate a large population to regroup. In between? A land bridge that drops off on either side into the deep.

From The Exodus Case: “ The sedimentation rate is very low in the Gulf of Aqaba, approximately 5cm/1000 years. But…the road that crosses the gulf is exposed to strong tidal currents, which results in an even lower rate. On the seabed there is no organic layer but it has a gravel character…This means that if the water is removed and the gravel is dried, there is solid ground to walk on.”

Unlike many scientists, Dr. Moller did not try to explain the miracle of the waters parting by a natural phenomenon. As stated in the first installment of this book review, he writes to test his theory that Exodus is an accurate account of real events. He is willing to accept a miracle when the Bible says God performed one. Especially when he is finding data to support most every other detail of Exodus.

Remember my installment on Sodom and Gomorrah: He found balls of pure sulphur (which does not occur naturally) that had burned into stone on a site that was burnt to a crisp and covered with ash. He has apparent evidence of a miracle, if not the evidence of how God did it. In the same way, he brings us apparent evidence of the Yam Suph crossing, if not of how God did it.

Once again, this is a very high level review of Dr. Moller’s study. Along with his process to arrive at the Nuweiba Peninsula, he has detailed discussions of the plagues that set it all in motion, pros and cons of alternate routes, and even time lines of how long it took the Israelites to make the trip as well as how long it would take Pharaoah’s army to catch up. He devotes several paragraphs to the Yam Suph/Red Sea translation as well.

Intrigued? The book is available on Amazon. I’d also recommend getting the two DVDs that Amazon will suggest you buy along with it. I got them and, I’m glad I did. The book is 400+ pages with tons of documentation, but VERY readable.

The Exodus Case – Moses in Egypt

“The Exodus Case” by Dr. Lennart Moller – Book Review, Part Four of Seven

“Thus says the Lord God of Israel: ‘Let My people go…’” Exodus 5:1

In my first installment of this book review, I wrote about how Bible History and world history don’t seem to intersect. In this third part of my review I want to overview Dr. Moller’s theory on Moses’ presence in the Egyptian record. As in the previous installment, I’ll give the high points

Moses was adopted by Pharaoh’s daughter, who was childless. The question becomes whether there is a Pharaoh during the time of Moses who had but one daughter who was childless and adopted a son.

Thutmosis I/Amenhotep fits that description. He had a daughter, Nefure/Hatshepsut (depending upon their age and changing status within government and religion, different names were adopted). There are statues of Nefure holding a baby boy. The inscriptions name him as Senmut. The child of the sculpture wears a royal ornament, indicating his status as heir to the throne. Senmut is translated as “mother’s brother.”

That may seem an odd name for son…unless the son was adopted. Again, I’ll leave the details for you to cover in the book, but essentially royal succession was heavily tied to religion and the inherited deity of each Pharaoh. In order for an adopted son to be legitimately of the line of a Pharoah with an only daughter, his relationship to the gods had to be direct. Senmut was given the status of being the son of a god. His mother by way of her father was also a daughter of the god, thus making them, theologically speaking, siblings.

In order to legitimize Senmut for the throne, they had to start the “propaganda” very early to ensure he was accepted when he ascended the throne.

Moses was adopted and in line for the throne as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. His scenario was exactly that of Senmut. The parallel continues. According to the Roman historian, Josephus, Moses was a general of the army, highly educated at court, and extremely successful. The royal court began first to envy, then fear him. They knew he was adopted and not Egyptian by blood.

Recall, then, Moses murdered an Egyptian slave master, was found out, and had to run off. He had given his enemies at court a reason to want him killed. Normally, one might think that a great general would get a wrist slap. Think of Patton in WWII when he abused a couple soldiers. Moses knew they would label him a traitor and use this excuse to kill him.

Guess what happened in Senmut’s case? That’s right; he was disinherited. There is no record of what he might have done, but records show he was suddenly stripped of his privileged status and disappeared under mysterious circumstances. And what do Egyptian’s do when a government official falls out of favor? They deface or destroy all statues and monuments for that person. Almost every statue of Senmut has had its nose broken off. That was a way to symbolically kill someone by removing their ability to breathe or taking away their spirit.

Here are other facts known of Senmut that parallel Moses: he was of humble birth, not royal lineage. At the time of his disappearance, Senmut was effectively ruler of Egypt (Moses was co-ruler when he escaped). Senmut’s shrine did not have the customary funerary feast scenes, but instead depicts him being embraced by the crocodile god (Moses was taken from the crocodile-infested Nile River). There is a surviving statue of Senmut. It shows him having an “aquiline” nose, which is not an Egyptian feature but a Caucasian/Jewish one.

Altogether, Dr. Moller cites 35 qualities shared by both Moses and Senmut. His discussion includes details of the Egyptian religions and its part in the royal line, the meaning of names and why Egyptian rulers were assigned different names in their lifetime. Statistically, such parallels would be unlikely in two separate individuals, making the theory that Moses and Senmut are the same man very compelling.

Intrigued? The book is available on Amazon. I’d also recommend getting the two DVDs that Amazon will suggest you buy along with it. I got them and, I’m glad I did. The book is 400+ pages with tons of documentation, but VERY readable.

Moses – How I Relate

“I will sing to the Lord / For He has triumphed gloriously! / The horse and its rider / He has thrown into the sea!…The Lord shall reign forever and ever.” Exodus 15:1-18

The passage above is called The Song of Moses. It was his joyous reaction to seeing Pharaoh and his army and chariots consumed by the Red Sea (Yam Suph). He had walked between walls of water, watched them slam like thunder onto the Egyptians, and watched bodies wash up on the shore.

Yeah, I’d likely dance a little jig too!

But where was that song up till now? He saw a burning bush that didn’t burn up. He was hand-picked by God to be the executor of His holy Will. God made his staff a thing of magic, becoming a snake at his bidding, turning his hand to leprosy and back again…not to mention the burning bush. Moses’ response?

“C’mon, Man! Me? I’m a stutterer. I don’t speak too good. How ‘bout You get someone else? Really. I won’t mind.”

God’s considered response was to have Aaron be Moses’ mouthpiece. After that, it was pretty much, “Shut up and get to work. This is how it’s gonna be. I AM going to do all this, and you’re my guy. Move!”

So Moses gets going, albeit with quaking knees. He finally gets brave when his tormentors, his opposition, develop aqualung and wash up on the beach. NOW he finds his manhood and does a victory dance.

The same goes of the Children of Israel, although it took them a lot longer to get the hang of this faith thing. It isn’t long before they start griping about lack of food, lack of water. Like they didn’t see the same things Moses saw or walk through the waters behind Moses. They saw the pillars of smoke and fire lead them. They saw that cloud move behind them and keep the Egyptians at bay while they crossed the land bridge of Yam Suph into Arabia.

Fast forward to today. To me. To you. We are the Children of Israel. We ignore the miracles of this life and complain. We worry as they did. We don’t pay attention as they didn’t.

This is why I read Exodus and I can’t help seeing the flaws in everyone’s behavior. I see them, and I catch myself struck with the reality that I do the same things.

I’m alive today thanks to an improbable series of events that saved my life with a double-bypass. I ended up complaining to God that I was in another city without my doctors, my wife – everyone who was part of my support group. What I was too scared or stupid to realize was that I still had God, Who was evidently doing a really good job of getting me to the hospital and surgeon that were going to save my life.

Like Moses, I had my victory dance a bit late in the story. Like Moses, I forgot the power with which I was saved and later got back to complaining and worrying again.

Reading Moses’ story is my spiritual mirror to remind me of how I end up acting too.

But there is redemption from God. And love.

Deuteronomy Chapter 34
5 So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord. 6 And He buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth Peor; but no one knows his grave to this day. 7 Moses was one hundred and twenty years old when he died. His eyes were not dim nor his natural vigor diminished…
10 But since then there has not arisen in Israel a prophet like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, 11 in all the signs and wonders which the Lord sent him to do in the land of Egypt, before Pharaoh, before all his servants, and in all his land, 12 and by all that mighty power and all the great terror which Moses performed in the sight of all Israel.

God loved Moses. Even though he was banned from setting foot in The Promised Land, suffering the consequences for disobedience, God loved him and redeemed him.

Just like he does with each of us.

What do you think? Do you believe God loves and redeems you, even if you have to deal with earthly consequences? I and other readers want to know what you think!