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There’s a big hole in Nebuchednezzar II’s ‘Egyptian campaign’

Published February 21, 2018 by amaic

 Image result for egyptian chariots

by

Damien F. Mackey

 

If Neb-2 had conquered Egypt, it would have been his greatest conquest in the minds of everyone at the time.  Not only would he and his Babylonian successors have left record of it, but other historians of the time and later would have referred to it, as they did to the actual conquest of Egypt by the Persian, Cambyses-2, 37 years after Neb-2’s death”.

http://www.sanityquestpublishing.com/essays/BabEgypt.html

 

Jim Reilly, who has recently attempted an overall revision of the ancient Egyptian and Mesopotamian dynastic histories (http://www.displaceddynasties.com/), will initially appear to support a common view (like the above) that there is virtually no historical evidence for a conquest of Egypt by Nebuchednezzar II the Chaldean, despite the prophets Jeremiah and Ezekiel telling of its devastating and long-lasting effects upon Egypt.

 

Only one piece of evidence apparently exists for this:  Babylonian Chronicle BM 33041.

“In the 37th year of Nebuchadrezzar, King of Babylon, he went to Mizraim [Egypt] to make war.  Amasis, King of Mizraim, collected [his army] and marched and spread abroad”.

 

Reilly will introduce the anomalous situation as follows in his Volume 1 – Nebuchadnezzar and the Egyptian Exile: http://www.displaceddynasties.com/volume-1.html

 

Chapter 1: Nebuchadnezzar’s Wars

 

Rise of Nebuchadnezzar

 

The Egyptian Holocaust

 

In 564 B.C. a foreign army invaded Egypt, laying waste the country. Tens of thousands died. Thousands more, primarily the skilled and educated elite, priests and artisans alike, were taken captive and deported. A minority escaped into the surrounding desert, among them the ruling pharaoh. Only a small remnant survived.

 

The physical structures of the country were also decimated. Temples and tombs were destroyed and looted. Cities were burned. From Migdol in the eastern Delta to Syene near Elephantine south of Thebes, 500 miles upriver on the Nile, the country was ravaged.

 

It was, quite literally, a holocaust.

 

Twenty years passed as the land languished, raped of its treasure by garrisons left behind by the foreigners. No pharaoh ruled to restore order. Another twenty years saw limited rebuilding and the gradual renewal of religious and political life. Temples were repaired. Training began for a new generation of priests and artisans.

 

The few traumatized survivors of the exile, now old, had only a vague recollection of the

days when the priests were taken away and the population vanished. They told tales about the _š_, “the devastation”.

 

The name of the invader, familiar to even the most casual student of ancient history, was Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, at the time the dominant power in the ancient Near East.

 

Only one problem surfaces in connection with this unprecedented act of genocide and material destruction. Without exception, historians categorically deny it ever happened. ….

 

Whilst Jim Reilly’s efforts to account for this glaring problem within the context of his somewhat complex revision are commendable – but not in accordance with my own, which involves an identification of Nebuchednezzar II with the great Ashurbanipal:

 

Book of Daniel – merging Assyrians and Chaldeans

https://www.academia.edu/35856059/Book_of_Daniel_-_merging_Assyrians_and_Chaldeans

 

whose massive conquest of Egypt no historian would doubt – what is striking is the stark contrast between the general puzzlement of the historians over this matter (as mentioned above), on the one hand, and, as Reilly proceeds in his article, the fulsome testimonies of the contemporary Hebrew prophets, on the other.

 

Here is the relevant section from Reilly’s article:

 

In the traditional history the Egyptian king on whom Zedekiah relied in vain must be the

fourth king of the Sa_te dynasty, Ha’a’ibre Wahibre, known to the Greeks as Apries.

According to this history Necho died in 595 B.C., two years after Zedekiah was installed

as king, and for the balance of Zedekiah’s reign Egypt was ruled by Necho’s son Psamtik

II (595-589 B.C.) and then by Ha’a’ibre Wahibre (589-570 B.C.). Psamtik II and Apries

must have been powerful kings to tempt Zedekiah to withhold tribute from Nebuchadrezzar. Sadly they have left no monuments commemorating their struggles with Babylon. ….

While the Egyptian king was unable to prevent the fall of Jerusalem, he did open Egypt’s borders to receive Judaean refugees. The available safe harbor in Egypt appealed to the remnant that survived in Judah. When Gedaliah, soon after his appointment as governor,

was murdered by Ishmael, son of Nethaniah, a Judaean of royal blood and an officer of the king, fear of reprisal from Babylon made an Egyptian sojourn seem even more inviting. Against the advice of Jeremiah the Jewish remnant fled to Egypt. The majority settled in the fortress city of Tahpanhes (tell Defenneh – modern Daphnae) on the eastern edge of the Egyptian delta. It is in this context that we hear for the first time of an impending Babylonian attack on Egypt.

 

Invasion of Egypt

 

According to Jeremiah

 

The first clear statement of the impending disaster comes from Jeremiah, the reluctant refugee:

 

In Tahpanhes the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah: While the Jews are watching, take some large stones with you and bury them in clay in the brick pavement at the entrance to Pharaoh’s palace in Tahpanhes. Then say to them, This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: I will send for my servant Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and I will set his throne over these stones I have buried here; he will spread his royal canopy above them. He will come and attack Egypt, bringing death to those destined for death, captivity to those destined for captivity, and the sword to those destined for the sword. He will set fire to the temples of the gods of Egypt; he will burn their temples and take their gods captive. As a shepherd wraps his garment around him, so will he wrap Egypt around himself and depart from there unscathed. There in the temple of the sun (Heliopolis) in Egypt he will demolish the sacred pillars and will burn down the temples of the gods of Egypt. (Jer. 43: 8-13)

 

Jeremiah supplies no specific date for the Babylonian invasion. For the refugees in Tahpanhes he provides a single clue: first the death of the pharaoh Apries; then the invasion.

 

‘This will be the sign to you that I will punish you in this place,’ declares the Lord, ‘so that you will know that my threats of harm against you will surely stand.’ This is what the Lord says: ‘I am going to hand Pharaoh Hophra (Wahibre in the Greek version of the Hebrew Bible) king of Egypt over to his enemies who seek his life, just as I handed Zedekiah king of Judah over to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the enemy who was seeking his life.’ (Jer. 44: 29-30)

 

As mentioned earlier, Wahemibre Necao (610-595 B.C.) was succeeded briefly by Psamtik (II) (595-589 B.C.) and then by Ha’a’ibre Wahibre (589-570 B.C.). This Wahibre, called Apries by the Greek historians, the fourth king of the Sa_te dynasty and the object of Zedekiah’s misplaced trust, must be the Pharaoh Hophra alluded to by Jeremiah. This, of course, if the traditional Egyptian chronology is accurate. The invasion must therefore postdate the end of Wahibre’s reign in 570 B.C. Since a fifth king, Ahmose-sa-Neith (Amasis), succeeded Wahibre and ruled Egypt for 44 years, the invasion must have occurred early in his reign.

….

The 586 B.C. Babylonian invasion of Judah was the prototype for what was about to happen in Egypt. Jeremiah warns the Jewish refugees: “This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel says: ‘You saw the great disaster I brought on Jerusalem and on all the towns of Judah. Today they lie deserted and in ruins…. Why bring such great disaster on yourselves?’ ” (Jer. 44:2,7) He predicts for the Jews in Egypt the same threefold curse – “sword, famine, and plague” – that earlier decimated their homeland. (Jer. 44: 12; cf. Ezek. 5:12) Very few of the Jewish refugees would escape death. (Jer. 44: 27) Memphis, the Egyptian capital, is likened to Jerusalem. “Pack your belongings for exile you who live in Egypt, for Memphis will be laid waste and lie in ruins without inhabitant” (Jer. 46: 19) The largely mercenary army defending Egypt would flee the onslaught:

 

Announce this in Egypt, and proclaim it in Migdol; proclaim it also in Memphis and Tahpanhes: Take your positions and get ready, for the sword devours those around you. Why will your warriors be laid low? They cannot stand, for the Lord will push them down. They will stumble repeatedly; they will fall over each other. They will say, Get up, let us go back to our own people and our native lands, away from the sword of the oppressor. (Jer. 46: 14-16)

 

The anticipated destruction would be immense; the depopulation of the country almost total. From the Nile Delta five hundred miles upriver to Thebes the Babylonian army would plunder and destroy. But in Egypt, as in Judah earlier, a remnant of the poorest of

the land would survive. Others would flee to neighbouring countries and return later.

 

The Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: “I am about to bring punishment on Amon god of Thebes, on Pharaoh, on Egypt and her gods and her kings, and on those who rely on Pharaoh. I will hand them over to those who seek their lives, to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and his officers. Later, however, Egypt will be inhabited as in times past,” declares the Lord. (Jer. 46:25-26)

 

In the case of Judah, Jeremiah had predicted a seventy-year exile. (Jer. 25:12; 29:10)

He leaves the length of the Egyptian exile unspecified. “Later” is all he will say. For more specific information on the invasion, and the nature and duration of the exile, we depend on Ezekiel.

 

According to Ezekiel

 

Ezekiel is more graphic as well as more specific in his description of the anticipated invasion. He is also less concerned with the Jewish refugees than was Jeremiah. His words are directed toward the native Egyptian population:

 

With a great throng of people (i.e. the Babylonian army) I will cast my net over you, and they will haul you up in my net. I will throw you on the land and hurl you on the open field. I will let all the birds of the air settle on you and all the beasts of the earth gorge themselves on you. I will spread your flesh on the mountains and fill the valleys with your remains. I will drench the land with your flowing blood all the way to the mountains, and the ravines will be filled with your flesh. (Ezek. 32: 3-6)

 

There is no ambiguity concerning the pervasiveness of the destruction. No part of Egypt would escape. The slaughter would proceed from Migdol in the northeastern corner of the Delta in the north of Egypt, to Syene, modern Assuan, in the south. There is no mistaking the language of the prophet. In the aftermath of the invasion the whole of Egypt would lie deserted and in ruins. “Egypt will become a desolate wasteland.” “I will make the land of Egypt a ruin and a desolate waste from Migdol to Aswan, as far as the border of Cush.” (Ezek. 29: 9-10) Included in the carnage were the neighbours and commercial allies of Egypt. This was no mere border skirmish as many critics claim. ….

 

A sword will come against Egypt, and anguish will come upon Cush. When the slain fall in Egypt, her wealth will be carried away and her foundations torn down. Cush and Put, Lydia and all Arabia, Libya and the people of the covenant land will fall by the sword along with Egypt. This is what the Lord says: The allies of Egypt will fall and her proud strength will fail. From Migdol to Aswan (Syene) they will fall by the sword within her, declares the Sovereign Lord. They will be desolate among desolate lands, and their cities will lie among ruined cities. Then they will know that I am the Lord, when I set fire to Egypt and all her helpers are crushed. (Ezek. 30: 4-8)

 

Ezekiel adds to Jeremiah’s list of conquered cities. We can clearly follow the path of destruction through representative towns of the Egyptian Delta southward to Thebes.

 

This is what the sovereign Lord says: I will put an end to the hordes of Egypt by the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. He and his army – the most ruthless of nations – will be brought in to destroy the land. They will draw their swords against Egypt and fill the land with the slain. I will destroy the idols and put an end to the images in Memphis. I will lay waste Upper Egypt, set fire to Zoan (Tanis) and inflict punishment on Thebes. I will pour out my wrath on Pelusium, the stronghold of Egypt, and cut off the hordes of Thebes. I will set fire to Egypt; Pelusium will writhe in agony. Thebes will be taken by storm; Memphis will be in constant distress. The young men of Heliopolis and Bubastis will fall by the sword and the cities themselves will go into captivity Dark will be the day at Tahpanhes when I break the yoke of Egypt There her proud strength will come to an end She will be covered with clouds and her villages will go into captivity (Ezek. 30: 10-11; 13)

 

And what fate befell pharaoh? Ezekiel’s language is figurative and vague on that account, but he appears to say that the pharaoh escaped both death and capture. His throne was lost but his life was spared, at least for the time being.

Son of man (God speaking to Ezekiel), set your face against Pharaoh king of Egypt and prophesy against him and against all Egypt. Speak to him and say:

 

‘This is what the Lord God says: I am against you, Pharaoh king of Egypt, you great monster lying among your streams You say, “The Nile is mine, I made it for myself.” But I will put hooks in your jaws and make the fish of your streams stick to your scales. I will pull you out from among your streams, with all the fish sticking to your scales. I will leave you in the desert, you and all the fish of your streams. You will fall on the open field and not be gathered or picked up. I will give you as food to the beasts of the earth and birds of the air. (Ezek 29:2-5)

 

“I will pull you out” from among your streams is better translated “I will drive you out (lit. cause you to leave)” from among your streams. Pharaoh would be driven from the Nile delta into the desert, possibly into the western oasis or southward into Ethiopia.

There in exile he would die.

 

The Forty Year Exile

 

How long did the devastation last? Jeremiah says only that Egypt would recover.

Ezekiel sets specific limits.

 

I will make the land of Egypt a ruin and a desolate waste from Midgol to Aswan, as far as the border of Cush. No foot of man or animal will pass through it; no one will live there for forty years. I will make the land of Egypt desolate among devastated lands, and her cities will lie desolate forty years among ruined cities. And I will disperse the Egyptians among the nations and scatter them through the countries. (Ezek. 29: 10-12)

 

The desolation that followed the invasion of Egypt was of long duration – a forty-year hiatus in the normal political life of the nation. There was for Egypt as there was for Judah, an exile, which left the land bleak and barren. For Judah the exile ended by degrees with a succession of returns of exiled Jews under Cyrus and his Persian successors. ….

 

 

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‘… there shall not be left one stone upon another”. How to explain Jerusalem today?

Published February 15, 2018 by amaic

 

Image result for dr ernest l martin jerusalem 

 

by

 Damien F. Mackey

  

And as [Jesus] went out of the Temple [note that Jesus and the disciples were standing outside the Temple walls and looking back toward the Temple enclosure], one of his disciples saith unto him, ‘Master, see what buildings are here!’ And Jesus answering said unto him, ‘Seest thou these great buildings? there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down’”(Matthew 24:1). Without the slightest doubt, when Jesus in his prophecy spoke about the destruction of the Temple, he was certainly including in his prophecy the stones of the outer walls that enclosed the Temple as well as the buildings of the inner Temple.

Dr. Ernest L. Martin

 

I have so far, largely following the important geographical research of Dr. Martin in Jerusalem,

compiled the following relevant articles on the layout of ancient Jerusalem and its environs:

Massive Challenge to Standard Geography of Jerusalem-Temple

 

https://www.academia.edu/35705515/Massive_Challenge_to_Standard_Geography_of_Jerusalem-Temple

‘Pinnacle of the Temple’ where Satan took Jesus

 

https://www.academia.edu/28012556/Pinnacle_of_the_Temple_where_Satan_took_Jesus

 

Third Temple and the Red Heifer

 

https://www.academia.edu/15371207/Third_Temple_and_the_Red_Heifer

 

Golgotha Situated near Altar of the Red Heifer

 

https://www.academia.edu/26686122/Golgotha_Situated_near_Altar_of_the_Red_Heifer

Golgotha Situated near Altar of the Red Heifer. Part Two: Not Mount of Transfiguration

https://www.academia.edu/26733283/Golgotha_Situated_near_Altar_of_the_Red_Heifer._Part_Two_Not_Mount_of_Transfiguration

Newly-discovered Seleucid Fort (‘Acra’) a challenge to identity of ‘Temple Mount’

https://www.academia.edu/32929762/Newly-discovered_Seleucid_Fort_Acra_a_challenge_to_identity_of_Temple_Mount

 

Mount Olivet as Mount Moriah

 

https://www.academia.edu/26907058/Mount_Olivet_as_Mount_Moriah

 

Dr. Ernest L. Martin has supplied a lot more fascinating historical and geologico-archaeological material – which seems to me to be generally irrefutable – in his brilliant article at: http://askelm.com/temple/t980504.htm

 

The Temple Mount and Fort Antonia

 

We all remember the proverb that a picture is worth a thousand words. This is so true. When we are able to view a site that we have been reading or hearing about, the historical and architectural information associated with the area becomes much more meaningful and the subject better understood. That is certainly the case with the Temple built by Herod the Great that existed in the time of Christ Jesus along with the adjacent fortress that dominated the landscape known as Fort Antonia. The truth is, no one in modern history (nor for the past 1900 years) has actually witnessed the complex of buildings that comprised the Holy Sanctuary and the fort that was built to protect it. This is one of the reasons why I have wanted to present to all of you on the ASK mailing list the first general view of what the Temple and Fort Antonia looked like to the inhabitants of Jerusalem during the time of Jesus. Once we recognize the actual situation of the two structures that I show in the illustrations, and once you realize their dimensions, many points of teaching that we observe in the New Testament will make much better sense to us.

In a word, a true perspective of those two buildings that occupied the greater part of northeastern Jerusalem (west of the Mount of Olives and the Mount of Offense) will provide a panoramic view that will show the sheer beauty and majesty of the Mother City of the Jews in the early part of the first century. Without doubt, it was a splendid and awesome display of architectural grandeur at its best. My new book “The Temples that Jerusalem Forgot” will present the full and interesting details.

What you are about the see in the illustrations at the conclusion of this Report is the description of the Temple and Fort Antonia as presented by Josephus, the Jewish historian. He was an eyewitness to the City of Jerusalem before the Romans destroyed it in A.D.70. I have had our artist draw both a horizontal aspect as though you would view the buildings from above (in outline form as an architect would draw the edifices), and also to show a vertical aspect that gives a three dimensional effect as seen from the east side of the buildings. The squared or rectangular stones that comprise both structures are very large but they are not drawn to exact scale. They represent an artist’s impression given with my directions in accord with the descriptions recorded by Josephus. If you will read Josephus yourself, you will find that our illustrations simply depict the eyewitness accounts of Josephus as he stated them in his literature.

The vertical sight will be that from the top of the southern part of the Mount of Olives known as the Mount of Offense which was directly east of the old city of David formerly located south of the Gihon Spring. This is the best place to view ancient Jerusalem. My new book will illustrate these points clearly.

 

A Panoramic View of Ancient Jerusalem

Let me start by mentioning a scene that usually occupies the attention of each person who visits Jerusalem for the first time (or who returns year after year to see the archaeological remains of the Jerusalem of Herod and Jesus). That particular scene is observed from the Mount of Olives just in front of the Seven Arches Hotel. This is where people can obtain the best over-all view of the ancient and modern City of Jerusalem. Before I present you with some details concerning this inspiring and unforgettable prospect, let me relate a little about myself for some of you who only recently have come on the A.S.K. mailing list through the Internet. This will allow you to understand my deep interest and my personal involvement with the City of Jerusalem over the past four decades.

My first visit to Jerusalem was in the year 1961. Since then I have returned to the city over thirty times from areas in Europe or America where I have lived. Though I am an American, I have professionally taught college in England where I lived for fourteen years (from 1958 to 1972). In Jerusalem, I worked personally on a daily basis with Professor Benjamin Mazar in the archaeological excavations at the western and southern walls of the Haram esh-Sharif. My working association with Professor Mazar on that site lasted for two months each summer during the years 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972 and 1973. Over that period of five summers, I was the academic supervisor for 450 college students from around the world who were digging at that archaeological excavation directed by Professor Mazar. Time magazine in its Education Section for September 3, 1973 featured my academic program for granting college credits for students who worked under my superintendence at Professor Mazar’s archaeological excavation sponsored by the Israel Exploration Society and Hebrew University. Besides this particular professional association at the excavation, I have personally guided more than 800 people around all areas of Israel explaining its biblical and secular history.

Though I am not an archaeologist by profession (my M.A. is in Theology and my Ph.D. is in Education), I have written several books and other major studies on the history and geography of Jerusalem especially in the periods of Jesus, the Roman Empire and Byzantium. I mention these brief biographical points to show that I have had considerable opportunity to study and to know the history of ancient Jerusalem.

With this in mind, let’s return to the top of the Mount of Olives to be reminded of the splendid panoramic perspective depicting the remnants of ancient Jerusalem as well as witnessing the vibrant and bustling modern City of Jerusalem. For the 450 college students and the 800 persons I have guided in their visits to Jerusalem, I have always taken them to this spot on the Mount of Olives in order for them to visualize, as a beginning lesson, what ancient Jerusalem was really like.

 

Observing Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives

The view is spectacular. There is no scene from other areas of Jerusalem that can replicate the grandeur of the ancient archaeological remains of the city. What dominates the scene, as one looks westward, is a rectangular body of walls with gigantic stones perfectly aligned with one another in their lower courses. These four walls present to the observer a feeling of majesty and awe at what the ancients were capable of accomplishing by their architectural achievements. These walls surround the area presently known as the Haram esh-Sharif (the Noble Enclosure). The stones of the lower courses in those walls are in their pristine positions. They are still placed neatly on top of another without any major displacement from their original alignments. These lower stones are clearly Herodian in origin, and in some places in the eastern portion of the wall they are pre-Herodian. There are certainly more than 10,000 of these stones still in place as they were in the time of Herod and Jesus.

No archaeological authority has been able to count all the stones of the four walls surrounding the Haram esh-Sharif because many of the stones are still hidden from view. But at the holy site at the Western Wall (often called the “Wailing Wall”) there are seven courses presently visible within that 197 feet length of the wall in the north/south exposure. That section contains about 450 Herodian stones. There are, however, eight more courses of Herodian stones underneath the soil down to the ground level that existed in the time of Herod and Jesus. Even below that former ground level, there are a further nine courses of foundation stones. If that whole section of the “Wailing Wall” could be exposed, one could no doubt count around 1250 Herodian stones (probably more) of various sizes. Most stones are about three to four feet high and three feet to twelve feet long, but there are varying lengths up to 40 feet (with the larger stones weighing about 70 tons). One stone has been found in the Western Wall that has the prodigious weight of 400 tons (Meir Ben-Dov, Mordechai Naor, Zeev Aner, “The Western Wall,” pp.61, 215). If one could extend by extrapolating the number of stones making up the four walls surrounding the Haram, there has to be over 10,000 Herodian and pre-Herodian stones still very much in place as they were some 2000 years ago. All of these stones in those four walls survived the Roman/Jewish War of A.D.70-73.

The grand centerpiece within the whole enclosure is the Muslim shrine called the Dome of the Rock. It is centrally located in a north/south dimension within the rectangular area of the Haram. To the south of the Dome and abutting to the southern wall is another large building called the Al Aqsa Mosque with its smaller dome. And though from the Mount of Olives modern Jerusalem can be seen in the background (and its contemporary skyline of buildings is interesting), the whole area is overshadowed and dominated by the Haram esh-Sharif with those ancient walls that impressively highlight the scene.

This is the view that modern viewers are accustomed to see. But let us now go back over 1900 years and imagine viewing Jerusalem from this same spot. It is from this vantagepoint that Titus (the Roman General) looked on the ruins of Jerusalem after the Roman/Jewish War in A.D.70. The description of what Titus saw is very instructive. We should read his appraisal in the accounts preserved by Josephus because Josephus and Titus were both eyewitnesses. Notice not only what Titus observed, but also what he left out of the narrative (War VII.1,1). This omission will become of prime importance in our inquiry regarding the true location of the Temple. Titus commanded that only a part of a wall and three forts were to remain of what was once the glorious City of Jerusalem. Notice what is stated in War VII.1,1.

“Now as soon as the army had no more people to slay or to plunder, because there remained none to be the objects of their fury (for they would not have spared any, had there remained any other work to be done), Caesar gave orders that they should now demolish the entire city and Temple, but should leave as many of the towers standing as were of the greatest eminence; that is, Phasaelus, and Hippicus, and Mariamne; and so much of the wall as enclosed the city on the west side. This wall was spared, in order to afford a camp for such as were to lie in garrison [in the Upper City], as were the towers [the three forts] also spared, in order to demonstrate to posterity what kind of city it was, and how well fortified, which the Roman valor had subdued; but for all the rest of the wall [surrounding Jerusalem], it was so thoroughly laid even with the ground by those that dug it up to the foundation, that there was left nothing to make those that came thither believe it [Jerusalem] had ever been inhabited. This was the end which Jerusalem came to by the madness of those that were for innovations; a city otherwise of great magnificence, and of mighty fame among all mankind” (Whiston trans., italics, bracketed words mine).

This eyewitness account about the total ruin of Jerusalem has given visitors to Jerusalem a major problem in relation to what we witness of ancient Jerusalem today. The fact is, Titus gave orders that the Temple was to be demolished. The only man-made structures to be left in Jerusalem was to be a portion of the western wall and the three fortresses located in the Upper City. This was Titus’ intention at first. But within a short time, even that portion of the western wall and the three fortresses in the west were so thoroughly destroyed that not a trace of them remained (unless the so-called “Tower of David” near the present day Jaffa Gate as scholars guess is a part of the foundation of Hippicus or Phasaelus). At the conclusion of the war, the Tenth Legion left Jerusalem a mass of ruins. Stones from those ruins were finally used in the following century to build a new city called Aelia. But by late A.D.70, there was nothing left standing of the Temple or the buildings of Jerusalem. Josephus stated:

“And truly, the very view itself was a melancholy thing; for those places which were adorned with trees and pleasant gardens, were now become desolate country every way, and its trees were all cut down. Nor could any foreigner that had formerly seen Judaea and the most beautiful suburbs of the city, and now saw it as a desert, but lament and mourn sadly at so great a change. For the war had laid all signs of beauty quite waste. Nor had anyone who had known the place before, had come on a sudden to it now, would he have known it again. But though he [a foreigner] were at the city itself, yet would he have inquired for it” (War VI.1,1).

 

What the Modern Visitor Observes

These descriptions by Josephus are what he and Titus saw from the Mount of Olives. But this is NOT what we observe today. We see something remaining from the period of Herod and Jesus that is quite different. Directly to the west, we view an awe-inspiring architectural relic of the past that is splendidly positioned directly in front of us. It dominates the whole western prospect of this panoramic view. That ancient structure is the Haram esh-Sharif. Its rectangular walls are so large in dimension that the Haram effectively obscures much of the view of the present old city of Jerusalem. And certainly, without the slightest doubt, the Haram (in its lower courses of stones that make up its walls) is a building that survived the Roman/Jewish War. Indeed, it is an outstanding example of the early architectural grandeur that once graced the Jerusalem of Herod and Jesus that has withstood two thousand years of weathering, earthquakes, wars and natural deterioration.

What is strange, and almost inexplicable at first, is the fact that Josephus mentioned the utter ruin of the Temple and all the City of Jerusalem, but he gave no reference whatever to the Haram esh-Sharif or that Titus had commanded that those walls should remain intact. And through the centuries, up to our modern period, there are over 10,000 stones still in their original positions making up the four walls of the Haram. As a matter of fact, in Titus’ time there were probably another 5,000 stones that were left on the upper courses of the four walls that have been dislodged and fallen to the ground over the centuries since the first century. What must be recognized is the fact that Titus deliberately left the rectangular shaped Haram esh-Sharif practically in the state he found it when he first got to Jerusalem with his legions. Strangely, Titus must have ordered that those four walls be retained for all future ages to see.

Without doubt, the Haram esh-Sharif with its gigantic walls was a survivor of the war. But how could Josephus have failed to account for the retention of such a spacious and magnificent building that was clearly in existence in pre-war Jerusalem? The continued existence of those extensive remains of the Haram esh-Sharif seem (at first glance) to nullify the appraisal of Josephus and Titus. Remember, they said that nothing of Jerusalem was left. “It [Jerusalem] was so thoroughly laid even with the ground by those that dug it up to the foundation, that there was left nothing to make those that came thither believe it [Jerusalem] had ever been inhabited.”

What is even more strange is the modern belief that the Haram esh-Sharif must be reckoned as the site of the Temple Mount. If present scholarly opinion is correct, this means that Titus and the Roman legions did not destroy the outer walls of the Temple in its middle and lower courses. The Romans left over 10,000 stones in place around the Haram. This modern belief of scholars and religious authorities (whether Jewish, Muslim or Christian) that the retention of those 10,000 stones around the Haram represents the remnants of the walls of the Temple make the above descriptions of their demolition by Josephus and Titus as being outlandish exaggerations. And true enough, this is precisely how most modern scholars, theologians, religious leaders and archaeologists view the matter.

Professor Williamson, who translated Josephus, said this was the case. He remarked that the thorough desolation that Titus was supposed to have seen in front of him was: “An exaggeration. A great deal of the southern part of the Temple enclosure was spared. The whole of the south wall of its successor, the present wall round the Haram esh-Sharif, the southern section of the west wall (the ‘Wailing Wall’, where the fall of Jerusalem is still lamented) and a short stretch of the east wall running up from the southeast corner are Herodian to a considerable height” (The Jewish War, p.454, note 2). We will see abundant evidence in my new book that Josephus was not exaggerating. This is because that enclosure known as the Haram esh-Sharif was NOT the Temple Mount, nor was the structure then officially reckoned as a part of the municipality of Jerusalem.

Our modern scholars and religious authorities consistently state that we cannot believe Josephus literally in his accounts concerning the important descriptions that he provides. We will discover, however, that it is the modern scholars and the religious leaders who are wrong and not Josephus. Josephus, the historian/priest, knew what he was talking about. Jerusalem and the Temple were totally destroyed and not a stone of them was left in place. The truth is, the Haram esh-Sharif was NOT the Temple Mount.

 

Josephus Was Not Exaggerating

It is time for us to realize that it is the modern scholars who are wrong, not the eyewitness accounts of Josephus and Titus. Jerusalem and the Temple were indeed destroyed to the bedrock just as they relate. Regarding this, there are other sections of Josephus’ accounts to show that he was not exaggerating. Josephus was keen on telling his readers that all the walls around Jerusalem were leveled to the ground. Note his observation: “Now the Romans set fire to the extreme parts of the city [the suburbs] and burnt them down, and entirely demolished its [Jerusalem’s] walls” (War VI.9,4.).

This reference shows that all the walls, even those enclosing the outskirts of Jerusalem, were finally leveled to the ground. To reinforce the matter, Josephus said elsewhere: “When he [Titus] entirely demolished the rest of the city, and overthrew its walls, he left these towers [the three towers mentioned above] as a monument of his good fortune, which had proved [the destructive power of] his auxiliaries, and enabled him to take what could not otherwise have been taken by him” (War VI.9,1).

These two accounts by Josephus, along with the previous observations given above, confirm that there was a literal destruction of all the walls surrounding Jerusalem (except the small section of the wall in the western part of the Upper City that was afterward destroyed because not a trace of it has been mentioned of its retention by later eyewitnesses or found by modern archaeologists). Indeed, after A.D.70 there is not a word by any historical record that even speaks of those three fortresses in the Upper City having a continuance that Titus at first thought to leave as standing monuments showing the power of Rome over the Jews.

But again, these descriptions of Josephus and Titus of total ruin seem to be at variance with what we witness today. Let’s face it. From the Mount of Olives we behold the four walls of the Haram still erect in all their glory, and they are prominently displayed with a majesty that dominates the whole of present-day Jerusalem. The lower courses of those walls clearly have 10,000+Herodian and pre-Herodian stones on top of one another. As a matter of fact, those rectangular walls are even functioning ramparts of Jerusalem today. They have been in constant use throughout the intervening centuries to protect the buildings that were built in the interior of that enclosure called the Haram esh-Sharif.

Again I say, if those rectangular walls are those which formerly surrounded the Temple Mount (as we are confidently informed by all authorities today), why did Josephus and Titus leave out of their eyewitness accounts any mention about this retention of this magnificent Haram structure? They spoke of the utter ruin and desolation of Jerusalem and of the Temple, not the survival of any buildings that the Jewish authorities once controlled. Be this as it may, Josephus and Titus were certainly aware that the walls of the Haram survived the war. Why did Josephus and Titus not refer to those walls of the Haram that remained standing in their time? My new book will explain the reason why, and very clearly.

 

A Quandary for Modern Christians

These facts present a major problem for Christians. If those rectangular walls of the Haram are indeed the same walls (in their lower courses) that formerly embraced the Temple Mount, why are these stones (more than 10,000 in number) yet so firmly on top of one another? The continued existence of those gigantic and majestic walls would show that Titus did not destroy the walls of the Temple, if those walls did surround the Temple. Why is this a difficulty for Christian belief? The reason is plain.

Christians are aware of four prophecies given by Jesus in the New Testament that there would not be one stone left upon another either of the Temple and its walls or even of the City of Jerusalem and its walls (Matthew 24:1,2; Mark 13:1,2; Luke 19:43,44; 21:5,6.). But strange as it may appear, the walls surrounding the Haram esh-Sharif still remain in their glory with their 10,000+ Herodian and pre-Herodian stones solidly in place in their lower courses. If those stones are those of the Temple, the prophecies of Jesus can be seriously doubted as having any historical value or merit in any analysis by intelligent and unbiased observers.

Indeed, the majority of Christian visitors to Jerusalem who first view those huge stones surrounding the rectangular area of the Haram (and who know the prophecies of Jesus) are normally perplexed and often shocked at what they see. And they ought to be. The surprise at what they observe has been the case with numerous people that I have guided around Jerusalem and Israel. They have asked for an explanation concerning this apparent failure of the prophecies of Jesus. Why do those gigantic walls still exist? If those walls represent the stones around the Temple, then the prophecies of Christ are invalid.

The usual explanation, however, to justify the credibility to Jesus’ prophecies is to say that Jesus could only have been speaking about the inner Temple and its buildings, NOT the outer Temple and its walls that surrounded it. This is the customary and the conciliatory answer that most scholars provide (and it is the explanation that I formerly gave my students or associates). The truth is, however, this explanation will not hold water when one looks at what Jesus prophesied. One should carefully observe the prophecies of Jesus in the Synoptic Gospels. They plainly state that one stone would not rest on another of the Temple, its buildings, and his prophecies also embraced its outer walls. The Greek word Jesus used in his prophetic context to describe the Temple and its buildings was hieron (this means the entire Temple including its exterior buildings and walls). Notice what Vincent says about the meaning of hieron.

“The word temple (hieron, lit., sacred place) signifies the whole compass of the sacred enclosure, with its porticos, courts, and other subordinate buildings; and should be carefully distinguished from the other word, naos, also rendered temple, which means the temple itself — the “Holy Place” and the “Holy of Holies.” When we read, for instance, of Christ teaching in the temple (hieron) we must refer it to one of the temple-porches [outer colonnades]. So it is from the hieron, the court of the Gentiles, that Christ expels the money-changers and cattle-merchants”( Vincent, Word Studies in the New Testament, Vol. I., p.50).

The exterior buildings of the Temple including its walls were always reckoned within the meaning of the word hieron that Jesus used in his prophecies concerning the total destruction of the Temple. There were several outer divisions of the Temple that were distinguished from the Inner Temple, and these outer appurtenances were accounted to be cardinal features of the Sanctuary. As an example, note the New Testament account stating that Satan took Jesus to the “pinnacle of the Temple” (Matthew 4:5). The pinnacle section was the southeastern corner of the outer wall that surrounded the whole of the Temple complex. The wording in the New Testament shows that this southeastern angle belonged to the Temple — it was a pinnacle [a wing] “of the Temple.” That area was very much a part of the sacred edifice to which Jesus referred when he prophesied that not one stone would remain on another.

There is an important geographical factor that proves this point. When Jesus made his prophecy that no stone would be left on one another, Matthew said that Jesus and his disciples had just departed from the outer precincts of the Temple. This means that all of them were at the time viewing the exterior sections of the Temple (the hieron) when he gave his prophecy (Matthew 24:1). The Gospel of Mark goes even further and makes it clear that the outside walls of the Temple were very much in the mind of Jesus when he said they would be uprooted from their very foundations. “And as he [Jesus] went out of the Temple [note that Jesus and the disciples were standing outside the Temple walls and looking back toward the Temple enclosure], one of his disciples saith unto him, ‘Master, see what buildings are here!’ And Jesus answering said unto him, ‘Seest thou these great buildings? there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down’”(Matthew 24:1). Without the slightest doubt, when Jesus in his prophecy spoke about the destruction of the Temple, he was certainly including in his prophecy the stones of the outer walls that enclosed the Temple as well as the buildings of the inner Temple.

 

The Whole City of Jerusalem Also to be Destroyed

Jesus went even further than simply prophesying about the destruction of the Temple and its walls. He also included within his prophetic predictions the stones that made up the whole City of Jerusalem (with every building and house that comprised the metropolis — including the walls that embraced its urban area). According to Jesus in Luke 19:43,44, every structure of Jewish Jerusalem would be leveled to the ground —to the very bedrock. “For the days shall come upon thee [Jerusalem], that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, and shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another.”

So, in the prophecies of Jesus, not only the stones that made up the Temple and its walls were to be torn down, but he also included within that scope of destruction even the stones that comprised the totality of the City of Jerusalem. We are left with no ambiguity concerning this matter. The prophecies about the Temple and the City of Jerusalem either happened exactly as Jesus predicted or those prophecies must be reckoned as false and unreliable. There can be no middle ground on the issue. If one is honest with the plain meaning of the texts of the Gospels, Jesus taught that nothing would be left of the Temple, nothing left of the whole City of Jerusalem, and nothing left of the walls of the Temple and the City.

 

Josephus and Titus Agree With Jesus

Was Jesus correct in his prophecies? Was Jerusalem with its Temple and walls leveled to the ground? What is remarkable is the fact that the eyewitness accounts given by Josephus and Titus agree precisely with what Jesus prophesied. Note what these two men observed. “It [Jerusalem with its walls] was so thoroughly laid even with the ground by those that dug it up to the foundation, that there was left nothing to make those that came thither believe it [Jerusalem] had ever been inhabited” (War VII.1,1).

All the land surrounding the city of Jerusalem was a desolate wasteland. Note Josephus’ account.

“They had cut down all the trees, that were in the country that adjoined to the city, and that for ninety stadia round about [for nearly ten miles], as I have already related. And truly, the very view itself was a melancholy thing. Those places that were before adorned with trees and pleasant gardens were now become a desolate country in every way, and its trees were all cut down. Nor could any foreigner that had formerly seen Judaea and the most beautiful suburbs of the city, and now saw it as a desert, but lament and mourn sadly at so great a change. For the war had laid all signs of beauty quite waste. Nor, if any one that had known the place before, and had come on a sudden to it now, would he have known it again. But though he were at the city itself, yet would he have inquired for it notwithstanding” (War VI.1,1, following the Whiston translation).

After A.D.70, people would have seen utter desolation in all directions. Every stone of every building and wall in Jerusalem was dislodged from its original position and thrown down to the ground. Josephus provides reasonable accounts of later events after the war was over to show how this complete destruction was accomplished. Much of the destruction came after the war had ceased.

For six months after the war, Josephus tells us that the Tenth Legion “dug up” the ruins of the houses, buildings and walls looking for plunder. They systematically excavated beneath the foundations of the ruined buildings and houses (they had many of the Jewish captives do the work for them). They also had the whole area turned upside down looking for gold and other precious metals that became molten when the fires were raging. This caused the precious metals to melt and flow into the lower crevices of the stones. Even the foundation stones contained melted gold from the great fires that devoured Jerusalem. This plundering of every former building or wall in the municipality of Jerusalem resulted in the troops overturning (or having the remaining Jewish captives overturn for them) every stone within the city. We will soon see that this activity resulted in every stone of Jewish Jerusalem being displaced.

This continual digging up of the city occurred over a period of several months after the war. Indeed, after an absence of about four months, Titus returned to Jerusalem from Antioch and once again viewed the ruined city. Josephus records what Titus saw.

“As he came to Jerusalem in his progress [in returning from Antioch to Egypt], and compared the melancholy condition he saw it then in, with the ancient glory of the city [compared] with the greatness of its present ruins (as well as its ancient splendor). He could not but pity the destruction of the city…. Yet there was no small quantity of the riches that had been in that city still found among the ruins, a great deal of which the Romans dug up; but the greatest part was discovered by those who were captives [Jewish captives were forced by the Roman troops to dig up the stones of their own city looking for gold], and so they [the Romans] carried it away; I mean the gold and the silver, and the rest of that most precious furniture which the Jews had, and which the owners had treasured up under ground against the uncertainties of war.”

 

Three Years After the War

We now come to the final appraisal of the complete desolation of Jerusalem. Note what Eleazar, the final Jewish commander at Masada, related three years after the war was finished at Jerusalem. He gives an eyewitness account of how the Romans preserved Fort Antonia (the Haram) among the ruins. What Eleazar said to the 960 Jewish people (who were to commit suicide rather than fall into the hands of General Silva who was on the verge of capturing the Fortress of Masada) is very important in regard to our present inquiry. This final Jewish commander lamented over the sad state of affairs that everyone could witness at this twilight period of the conflict after the main war with the Romans was over.

Jerusalem was to Eleazar a disastrous spectacle of utter ruin. There was only one thing that remained of the former Jerusalem that Eleazar could single out as still standing. This was the Camp of the Romans that Titus permitted to remain as a monument of humiliation over the Mother City of the Jews. Eleazar acknowledged that this military encampment had been in Jerusalem before the war, and that Titus let it continue after the war. The retention of this single Camp of the Romans, according to Eleazar, was a symbol of the victory that Rome had achieved over the Jewish people. His words are recorded in War VII.8,7. Several words and phrases need emphasizing, and I hope I have done so:

“And where is now that great city [Jerusalem], the metropolis of the Jewish nation, which was fortified by so many walls round about, which had so many fortresses and large towers to defend it, which could hardly contain the instruments prepared for the war, and which had so many ten thousands of men to fight for it? Where is this city that was believed to have God himself inhabiting therein? it is now demolished to the very foundations, and hath nothing left but THAT MONUMENT of it preserved, I mean THE CAMP OF THOSE [the Romans] that hath destroyed it, WHICH STILL DWELLS UPON ITS RUINS; some unfortunate old men also lie ashes upon the of the Temple [the Temple was then in total ruins — all of it had been burnt to ashes], and a few women are there preserved alive by the enemy, for our bitter shame and reproach.”

What Eleazar said must be reckoned as an eyewitness account of the state of Jerusalem in the year A.D.73. This narrative is of utmost importance to our question at hand. This is because Eleazar admitted that the City of Jerusalem and all its Jewish fortresses had indeed been demolished “to the very foundations.” There was nothing left of the City or the Temple. This is precisely what Jesus prophesied would happen.

Eleazar even enforced this. He mentioned the “wholesale destruction” of the city. He said that God had “abandoned His most holy city to be burnt and razed to the ground” (War VII.8,6 Loeb). And then, a short time later, Eleazar concluded his eyewitness account by stating: “I cannot but wish that we had all died before we had seen that holy city demolished by the hands of our enemies, or the foundations of our Holy Temple dug up, after so profane a manner” (War VII.8,7).

Yes, even the very foundation stones that comprised the Temple complex (including its walls) had been uprooted and demolished. They were then “dug up” and not even the lower courses of base stones were left in place. According to Eleazar, the only thing left in the Jerusalem area was a single Roman Camp that still hovered triumphantly over the ruins of the City and the Temple. He said that Jewish Jerusalem “hath nothing left.” The only thing continuing to exist was the “monument” (a single monument) preserved by Titus. And what was that “monument”? Eleazar said it was “the camp of those that destroyed it [Jerusalem], which still dwells upon its ruins.”

What could this Camp of the Romans have been? This is quite easy to discover when one reads the accounts of the war as recorded by Josephus. The main military establishment in Jerusalem prior to the war was Fort Antonia located to the north of the Temple (which is now the Haram esh-Sharif). In my new book “The Temples that Jerusalem Forgot,” I will give an abundance of information to show that the Haram was considered Roman property even before the war. Because Antonia was the property of Rome, they had no reason to destroy those buildings that already belonged to the Romans. That is why Titus left Fort Antonia (the Haram esh-Sharif) and its walls in tact (as we see them today). ….

 

Abraham and Athamas

Published February 12, 2018 by amaic
Image result for athamas and nephele

 

by

Damien F. Mackey

 

 

“I can’t think of another pair, of ancient stories which are so similar, and yet so seldom compared! Both Abraham and Athamas were divinely commanded to sacrifice, each their own son, with a knife on a mountain top, and each was about to comply when the child was saved, each by the miraculous appearance of a ram”.

John R. Salverda

 

 

 

Can we find traces of Abraham (Abram) and Sarah (Sarai) also in other ancient traditions?

Indeed, it appears that we can. The pair are commonly likened to, for instance, the Hindu pair Brahma and Sarasvati. Thus we read in:

Brahma and Abraham: Divine Covenants of Common Origin

http://www.academia.edu/4540206/Brahma_and_Abraham_Divine_Covenants_of_Common_Origin

Regarding the link between Abraham and Brahma, Steven Rosen writes:

 

The similarities between the names of Abraham and Brahma have not gone unnoticed. Abraham is said to be the father of the Jews, and Brahma, as the first created being, is often seen as the father of mankind.

Abraham’s name is derived from the two Semitic words ab meaning ‘father’ and

raam/raham meaning ‘of the exalted….’ We might also note that the name of Brahma‘s consort Sarasvati seems to resonate with that of Abraham‘s wife, Sarah [… each one‘s identity as a wife and/or sister]. Also, in India, the Sarasvati River includes a tributary known as the Ghaggar…. According to Jewish tradition, Hagar was Sarah’s maidservant…. Both Brahmins … and Jews see themselves as the ‘chosen people of God’. The Hebrews began their sojourn through history as a ‘kingdom of priests’ (Exodus 19:6). Likewise, Brahmins are also a community of priests. ….

 

Now, good friend John R. Salverda claims also to have found compelling likenesses between Abraham and the Minyan Athamas (of Greek legend), and between Sarah and Nephele, the wife of Athamas:

 

Abraham, Athamas and the Minyans

 http://www.hope-of-israel.org/minyans.html

 

Contents:

Minyans, Kurds, Armenians, and UR.

Thessalians.

Abraham and the Ram-Lamb?

The Almost-Consummated Sacrifice of the Son!

Competing Wives and their Allegorical Significance.

Isaac and the Mountain.

Different Hebrew Traditions Coalesced in Greek Mythology.

Minyans, Kurds, Armenians, and UR

 

Here I shall take what I would consider to be the most compelling comparisons in this article:

 

Abraham and the Ram-Lamb?

 

The Minyans, as Hurrians from Armenia, knew well the story of the Hebrew, Abraham, they called him Athamas. The Minyans most likely got their, only slightly tainted, version of the story, brought over by migrants from the area of Carchemish and therefore named its Greek colony at the city of Orchomenus (a plausible transliteration, and supposed by some to have been founded by Athamas himself) after the place. Even a cursory comparison of the two supposedly unrelated stories displays them as remarkably coincidental. Athamas began a movement toward, the abolition of, that age old and wide spread, religious concept, human sacrifice (as well as its companion tradition, cannibalism). Although we praise Abraham for his role in this abolition, it seems that some factions (mainly, the Achaeans) of the ancient Greeks, were of a different opinion. They considered their Abrahamic equivalent Athamas, and his descendants as well, to be cursed for their part in the civilizing of mankind (See Herodotus 7. 197 Athamas the son of Aeolus contrived death for Phrixus, having taken counsel with Ino, and after this how by command of an oracle the Achaeans propose to his descendants the following tasks to be performed: whosoever is the eldest of this race, he is brought forth to the sacrifice. This is done to the descendants of Kytissoros the son of Phrixus, because, he brought the wrath of the gods upon his own descendants.). In both cases, whether Scripture or myth, the abolition of human sacrifice in favor of animal sacrifice (the ram) is the obvious message of the story. Pausanias describes a statue depicting the sacrifice of this ram; “There is also a statue of Phrixus the son of Athamas carried ashore to the Colchians by the ram. Having sacrificed the animal, he has cut out the thighs in accordance with Greek custom and is watching them as they burn.” (Pausanias, Description of Greece 1. 24. 2) Take note of the Greek custom of cutting out the thighs as if to make the sacrifice Kosher. There is no doubt in my mind as to where they got such a notion.

 

The Almost-Consummated Sacrifice of the Son!

 

Intricate details of Abrahams life appear as parts of the Greek myth as well, I can’t think of another pair, of ancient stories which are so similar, and yet so seldom compared! Both Abraham and Athamas were divinely commanded to sacrifice, each their own son, with a knife on a mountain top, and each was about to comply when the child was saved, each by the miraculous appearance of a ram. The ram was considered to have been supplied by God, and was said to have been acceptable to Him as a replacement sacrifice instead of the son of man. … The symbol of the sacrificed lamb of god, appears in the Greek Myth, complete with an association to the Hebrew story of the garden of Eden, for the quest of the Argonauts, like the Biblical quest of all mankind, hangs in (nailed to) a tree, in a sacred grove, there is a serpent, and the way is guarded. Phrixos sacrificed the golden-fleeced ram to Zeus Phyxios, but gave its fleece to Aetes, who nailed it to an oak tree in a grove of Ares.” (See Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 80) “The fleece in Colchis and the apples of the Hesperides, since they seemed to be of gold, two serpents that never slept guarded and claimed as their own.” (Philostratus the Elder, Imagines 2. 17. 6) This association begs for the conclusion that these Greeks had some knowledge about the Hebrew concept of the original sin as well as the hopeful promise of the Messiah. No doubt they did, for they knew many intricate details of the Hebrew story, including the sophisticated religious symbolism inherent in the parable of

 

Abraham’s two wives.

 

Competing Wives and their Allegorical Significance.

 

Both Abraham, and Athamas, are said to have had a pair of competing wives each of whom were obvious allegories of differing religious concepts. Offspring was gotten from each of the wives, and the quarrel concerned, whose offspring, and their attending religious concept, would be favored, this is true in both stories. Ino is the Greek equivalent of Hagar from the Hebrew story, while Nephele is the counterpart of Sarah. Consider the Ino, Hagar identification first; The Greeks considered Ino to be the loser of the wifely quarrel, she was exiled and had to flee from her family home, with her half dead child in her arms, (Gen. 21:14,15) to the point of her death, when god intervened, granting Ino powerful miraculous abilities over water, thus saving the lives of Ino and her son Melicertes and appointing them to become great religious icons among the People who lived in the land of her exile, which we are told in the myth, was Corinth in Greece. Except for the location and names, all of these motifs are straight from the life of Hagar, who was looked upon as symbolic of earthly Zion, the covenant with slavery and death (Gal. 4 :22-31).

On the other hand, Sarah was symbolic of freedom, the Heavenly Zion, the wife of God (also in Gal. 4:22-31). Now, Consider the identification of Nephele with Sarah; Nephele was created as a duplicate of Hera, the heavenly wife of god, “Zeus formed a figure of Hera out of cloud (Nephele) (Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 4. 69. 4) “a Cloud (Nephele)? its form was like the supreme celestial goddess, the daughter of Kronos. The hands of Zeus set it as a trap for him, a beautiful misery (Pindar, Pythian Ode 2. 32 ff). Zeus fashioned a Cloud (Nephele) to look like Hera (Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca E1. 20). Hers were the favored offspring, who were carried off to the Egyptian land, (That Colchis [in the Caucasus] was an Egyptian land we learn from Herodotus who says:

There can be no doubt that the Colchians are an Egyptian race. Before I heard any mention of the fact from others, I had remarked it myself. After the thought had struck me, I made inquiries on the subject both in Colchis and in Egypt, and I found that the Colchians had a more distinct recollection of the Egyptians, than the Egyptians had of them. Still the Egyptians said that they believed the Colchians to be descended from the [Egyptian] army of Sesostris (Herodotus Histories 2.104) from which they eventually had a miraculous epic deliverance (Argonautica). ….

 

 

Nimrod and Gilgamesh

Published November 25, 2015 by amaic

gil 

Tightening the Geography and Archaeology for Early Genesis

Part Two: The Epoch of Gilgamesh

by

Damien Mackey

  

Dr. David Livingston has, in his 2003 article, “Who Was Nimrod?”,

argued intriguingly for Nimrod to have been the same as the ancient potentate, Gilgamesh.

 My article will be based largely upon this possible extension of the famous tyrant.

 

Introduction

Nimrod has been identified with various gods and semi-mythical, or real historical characters. In the following blog piece, for instance, he is connected with Sumerian, Egyptian – and even Greek (“Dionysus”) – deities (and one could add the god Bacchus, when linked with BarCush, or son of Cush): http://www.babylonrisingblog.com/Godvsgod3.html

In my blogs, “The Man of Many Names” and “The First Shall Be The Last,” we learned that Nimrod “began to become a [giant] mighty one” through some sort of defilement of himself. In the context of numerous other descriptions of this man, the word “gibbor” in this case was more than just a “mighty one” – Nimrod became a giant. Somehow, he activated Nephilim genes that apparently came to him through his ancestry. Thus, he became a Post-Flood member of the Demi-god Tier – an offspring of the Nephilim.

He built the Tower of Babel with intentions of killing God and taking over – a plan that was not at all unlike that of Zeus, the Olympian who sought to destroy the Titan gods who ruled before him. But Nimrod’s plans were thwarted by God and the people of the earth who supported him were divided into 70 languages/nations. Each people group went away talking about the same guy, only now, he had other names. The dominant name he became known by was Osiris, the god of the Egyptians. Let’s look a little deeper into this myth and how it played into the characters and events of our Hebrew Bible.

To the left is a typical diagram of the Egyptian god family tree.

Here we see Atum as the Ultimate Source Tier god. Shu and Tefnut are the Top Tier gods, followed by Geb and Nut in the Middle Tier and Osiris is in the Final Tier (the same tier that we found Dionysus, Apollo, Marduk, Ninurta and Gilgamesh – all of which are other names for Nimrod). Similar to Marduk in the Sumerian family tree, Osiris rises from the Final Tier to be the ultimate, ruling diety in Egyptian mythology.

[End of quote]

 

David Rohl would add other deities to this list for Nimrod. In his The Lost Testament – From Eden to Exile: The Five-Thousand-Year History of the People of the Bible (2002, p. 73), he wrote, referring to Ashur:

 

It appears that we are dealing here with a single historical character who established the first empire on Earth and who was deified by many nations under four main name groupings: 1. Early Sumerian Enmer, later Mesopotamian Ninurta (originally Nimurda), biblical Nimrod, Greek Ninus; 2. Old Babylonian Marduk, biblical Merodach, later simply known as Bel or Baal (‘Lord’); 3. Late Sumerian Asar-luhi (a principal epithet of Marduk), Assyrian Ashur, Egyptian Asar (Osiris); 4. Sumerian Dumuzi, biblical Tammuz, Phoenician Adonis, Greek Dionysius, Roman Bacchus.

[End of quote]

 

For Catholic readers (particularly), the mystical visionary, Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich, describing Nimrod in some detail, identified him as “Belus”, perhaps the same as Rohl’s “Bel or Baal (‘Lord’)”. According to what she wrote (Life of Jesus Christ):

 

 

[Nimrod] built Babylon out of the stones of the Tower …. He also laid the foundation of Ninive [Nineveh], and built substructures of stones for tent dwellings. He was a great hunter and tyrant. At that period savage animals were very numerous, and they committed fearful ravages. The hunting expeditions fitted out against them were as grand as military expeditions. They who slew these wild animals, were honored as gods. Nemrod [Nimrod] also drove men together and subdued them. He practiced idolatry, he was full of cruelty and witchcraft, and he had many descendants. He lived to be about two hundred and seventy years old. He was of sallow complexion, and from early youth he had led a wild life. He was an instrument of Satan and very much given to star worship. Of the numerous figures and pictures that he traced in the planets and the constellations, and according to which he prophesied and concerning the different nations and countries, he sought to reproduce representations, which he set up as gods. The Egyptians owe their Sphinx to him [My comment: Perhaps so, but the Sphinx was built much later than Nimrod’s time], as also their many-armed and many-headed idols. For seventy years, Nemrod busied himself with the histories of these idols, with ceremonial details relative to their worship and the sacrifices to be offered them, also with the forming of the pagan priesthood. By his diabolical wisdom and power, he had subjected the races that he led to the building of the Tower. When the confusion of tongues arose, many of those tribes broke away from him, and the wildest of them followed Mesraim [Mizraim] into Egypt. …. Among his numerous children [was] Ninus ….

[End of quote]

 

And historically, Nimrod has been identified with such early Mesopotamian/Akkadian rulers as Enmerkar of the Uruk I dynasty, e.g., by Rohl, and with the mighty king Sargon of Akkad. Commenting upon Rohl’s view, I wrote in Part One:

 

On Nimrod

 

I had previously thought that David Rohl’s view (in The Lost Testament) that the Uruk I dynasty after the Mesopotamian flood was the dynasty of Cush and Nimrod, with the latter being the historical Enmerkar. And this may still apply. However, I now think that we need to take into account our new geography/archaeology and also D. Petrovich’s compelling view of Nimrod as the legendary Sargon of Akkad.

Whilst Sargon was a real person, I would suggest that the Mesopotamians had borrowed this story of his infancy (dating much later than the similar Moses story) from the Book of Exodus (http://ancienthistory.about.com/od/nemonarchs/g/Sargon.htm):

 

A story about Sargon’s youth sounds like the Moses infancy story. The baby Sargon, nestled in a reed basket sealed with bitumen, was placed in the Euphrates River. The basket floated until it was rescued by a gardener or date grower. In this capacity he worked for the king of Kish, Ur-Zababa until he rose in the ranks to become the king’s cupbearer. ….

 

Finally, I shall be most interested to find whether further excavation work at the site of Jerablus (Carchemish), or its environs, yields any evidence for the famous Tower of Babel.

[End of quote]

 

Finally, in the opinion of Dr. Livingston, Nimrod is to be equated with Gilgamesh.

 

Gilgamesh the Hunter King

 

Here is the relevant part of Dr. Livingston’s article: http://davelivingston.com/nimrod.htm

 

Was “Nimrod” Godly or Evil?

First, what does the name Nimrod mean? It comes from the Hebrew verb marad, meaning “rebel.” Adding an “n” before the “m” it becomes an infinitive construct, “Nimrod.” (see Kautzsch 1910: 137 2b; also BDB 1962: 597).

First, what does the name Nimrod mean? It comes from the Hebrew verb marad, meaning “rebel.” Adding an “n” before the “m” it becomes an infinitive construct, “Nimrod.” (see Kautzsch 1910: 137 2b; also BDB 1962: 597). The meaning then is “The Rebel.” Thus “Nimrod” may not be the character’s name at all. It is more likely a derisive term of a type, a representative, of a system that is epitomized in rebellion against the Creator, the one true God. Rebellion began soon after the Flood as civilizations were restored. At that time this person became very prominent.

In Genesis 10:8-11 we learn that “Nimrod” established a kingdom. Therefore, one would expect to find also, in the literature of the ancient Near East, a person who was a type, or example, for other people to follow. And there was. It is a well-known tale, common in Sumerian literature, of a man who fits the description. In addition to the Sumerians, the Babylonians wrote about this person; the Assyrians likewise; and the Hittites. Even in Palestine, tablets have been found with this man’s name on them. He was obviously the most popular hero in the Ancient Near East.

Part of Nimrod’s kingdom (Genesis 10:11), Nineveh along the Tigris River continued to be a major city in ancient Assyria. Today adjacent to modern Mosul, the ruins of ancient Nineveh are centered on two mounds, the acropolis at Kuyunjik and Nebi Yunis (Arabic “Prophet Jonah”). Pictured is Sennacherib’s “Palace without a rival” on Kuyunjik, constructed at the end of the seventh century BC and excavated by Henry Layard in the early 20th century.

The Gilgamesh Epic

The Babylonian Flood Story is told on the 11th tablet of the Gilgamesh Epic, almost 200 lines of poetry on 12 clay tablets inscribed in cuneiform script. A number of different versions of the Gilgamesh Epic have been found around the ancient Near East, most dating to the seventh century BC. The most complete version came from the library of Ashurbanipal at Nineveh. Commentators agree that the story comes from a much earlier period, not too long after the Flood as described in the story.

The person we are referring to, found in extra-Biblical literature, was Gilgamesh. The first clay tablets naming him were found among the ruins of the temple library of the god Nabu (Biblical Nebo) and the palace library of Ashurbanipal in Nineveh. Many others have been found since in a number of excavations. The author of the best treatise on the Gilgamesh Epic says,

The date of the composition of the Gilgamesh Epic can therefore be fixed at about 2000 BC. But the material contained on these tablets is undoubtedly much older, as we can infer from the mere fact that the epic consists of numerous originally independent episodes, which, of course, did not spring into existence at the time of the composition of our poem but must have been current long before they were compiled and woven together to form our epic (Heidel 1963: 15).

Yet his arrogance, ruthlessness and depravity were a subject of grave concern for the citizens of Uruk (his kingdom). They complained to the great god Anu, and Anu instructed the goddess Aruru to create another wild ox, a double of Gilgamesh, who would challenge him and distract his mind from the warrior’s daughter and the noblemen’s spouse, whom it appears he would not leave in peace (Roux 1966: 114).

The Epic of Gilgamesh has some very indecent sections. Alexander Heidel, first translator of the epic, had the decency to translate the vilest parts into Latin. Spieser, however, gave it to us “straight” ( Pritchard 1955: 72). With this kind of literature in the palace, who needs pornography? Gilgamesh was a vile, filthy, man. Yet the myth says of him that he was “2/3 god and 1/3 man.”

 

Gilgamesh is Nimrod

Model of ancient ziggurat.

 

How does Gilgamesh compare with “Nimrod?” Josephus says of Nimrod,

Now it was Nimrod who excited them to such an affront and contempt of God. He was the grandson of Ham, the son of Noah — a bold man, and of great strength of hand. He persuaded them not to ascribe it to God, as if it were through his means they were happy, but to believe that it was their own courage which procured that happiness. He also gradually changed the government into tyranny — seeing no other way of turning men from the fear of God, but to bring them into a constant dependence upon his own power. He also said he would be revenged on God, if he should have a mind to drown the world again; for that he would build a tower too high for the waters to be able to reach! and that he would avenge himself on God for destroying their forefathers (Ant. 1: iv: 2)

What Josephus says here is precisely what is found in the Gilgamesh epics. Gilgamesh set up tyranny, he opposed YHVH and did his utmost to get people to forsake Him.

Two of the premiere commentators on the Bible in Hebrew has this to say about Genesis 10:9,

Nimrod was mighty in hunting, and that in opposition to YHVH; not “before YHVH” in the sense of according to the will and purpose of YHVH, still less, . . . in a simply superlative sense . . . The name itself, “Nimrod” from marad, “we will revolt,” points to some violent resistance to God . . . Nimrod as a mighty hunter founded a powerful kingdom; and the founding of this kingdom is shown by the verb with vav consecutive, to have been the consequence or result of his strength in hunting, so that hunting was intimately connected with the establishing of the kingdom. Hence, if the expression “a mighty hunter” relates primarily to hunting in the literal sense, we must add to the literal meaning the figurative signification of a “hunter of men” (a trapper of men by stratagem and force); Nimrod the hunter became a tyrant, a powerful hunter of men (Keil and Delitzsch 1975: 165).

“in the face of YHVH can only mean “in defiance of YHVH,” as Josephus and the Targums understand it (op. cit.: 166).

And the proverb must have arisen when other daring and rebellious men followed in Nimrod’s footsteps and must have originated with those who saw in such conduct an act of rebellion against the God of salvation, in other words, with the possessors of the divine promise of grace (loc. cit.).

Often attributed to Nimrod, the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11:1-9) was not a Jack and the Beanstalk type of construction, where people were trying to build a structure to get into heaven. Instead, it is best understood as an ancient ziggurat (Assyrian “mountaintop”), as the one pictured here from ancient Ur of the Chaldees, Abraham’s hometown (Genesis 11:31). A ziggurat was a man-made structure with a temple at its top, built to worship the host of heaven.

After the Flood there was, at some point, a breakaway from YHVH. Only eight people descended from the Ark. Those people worshipped YHVH. But at some point an influential person became opposed to YHVH and gathered others to his side. I suggest that Nimrod is the one who did it. Cain had done similarly before the Flood, founding a new city and religious system.

Our English translation of the Hebrew of Genesis 10:8-10 is weak. The author of this passage of Scripture will not call Gilgamesh by his name and honor him, but is going to call him by a derisive name, what he really is — a rebel. Therefore we should translate Genesis 10:8-10 to read,

Cush begat Nimrod; he began to be a tyrant in the earth. He was a tyrannical hunter in opposition to the Lord. Thus it is said, “Nimrod the tyrannical opponent of YHVH.”

Likewise, Gilgamesh was a man who took control by his own strength. In Genesis 10 Nimrod is presented as a type of him. Nimrod’s descendants were the ones who began building the tower in Babel where the tongues were changed. Gilgamesh is a type of early city founders. (Page numbers below are from Heidel 1963)

 

He is a “shepherd” ……………… page 18 From Uruk ……………………….. page 17  (Kramer 1959: 31 calls Uruk, Erech.) A giant …………………………….. page 17  (11 cubits) Builds cities ………………………. page 17 Vile man “takes women” ……… page 18 Mighty hunter ……………………. page 18

 

Gilgamesh Confronts YHVH!

The name of YHVH rarely appears in extra-Biblical literature in the Ancient Near East. Therefore we would not expect to find it in the Gilgamesh epic. But why should the God of the Jews rarely be mentioned? The Hebrew Bible is replete with the names of other gods.

On the other hand, the nations surely knew of Him even though they had no respect for Him. If so, how might His Name appear in their literature, if at all? The name of YHVH, in a culture which is in rebellion against His rule, would most likely be in a derisive form, not in its true form. Likewise, the writers of Scripture would deride the rebels.

 

Putting the Bible and the Gilgamesh Epic Together

 

The Gilgamesh Epic describes the first “God is Dead” movement. In the Epic, the hero is a vile, filthy, perverted person, yet he is presented as the greatest, strongest, hero that ever lived. (Heidel 1963: 18). So that the one who sent the Flood will not trouble them anymore, Gilgamesh sets out to kill the perpetrator. He takes with him a friend who is a monstrous half-man, half-animal — Enkidu. Together they go on a long journey to the Cedar Mountain to find and destroy the monster who sent the Flood. Gilgamesh finds him and finally succeeds in cutting off the head of the creature whose name is “Huwawa” (“Humbaba” in the Assyrian version; see Heidel 1963: 34ff).

Is there a connection with the Gilgamesh epic and Genesis 10? Note what Gilgamesh says to Enkidu, the half-man, half-beast, who accompanied him on his journey, found in Tablet 111, lines 147 – 150.

“If I fall,” Gilgamesh says, “I will establish a name for myself. ‘Gilgamesh is fallen,’ they will say, ‘in combat with terrible Huwawa.'”

But the next five lines are missing from all tablets found so far! Can we speculate on what they say? Let’s try . . . We suggest that those five lines include,

“But if I win,.. they will say, Gilgamesh, the mighty vanquisher of Huwawa!”

Why do we say that? Because Genesis 10:9 gives us the portion missing from the Gilgamesh tablets. Those lines include… “it is said, Nimrod (or Gilgamesh) the mighty vanquisher of YHVH.” This has to be what is missing from all the clay tablets of the Gilgamesh story. The Gilgamesh Epic calls him Huwawa; the Bible calls Him YHVH.

This face supposedly represents Huwawa who, according to the Gilgamesh’s Epic, sent the Flood on the earth. According to the story, Huwawa (Humbaba in the Assyrian version) was killed by Gilgamesh and his half-man/half-beast friend, Enkidu. The author suggests Huwawa is the ancient pagan perspective of Yahweh (YHVH), the God of the Bible. About 3 inches (7.5 cm), this mask is dated to around the sixth century BC. Of an unknown provenance, it is now in the British Museum.

Heidel, speaking of the incident as it is found on Tablet V says,

All we can conclude from them (the lost lines) is that Gilgarnesh and Enkidu cut off the head of Humbaba (or Huwawa) and that the expedition had a successful issue (ending) (1963: 47).

The missing lines from the Epic are right there in the Bible!

Because of the parallels between Gilgamesh and Nimrod, many scholars agree that Gilgamesh is Nimrod. Continuing with Gilgamesh’s fable, he did win, he did vanquish Huwawa and took his head. Therefore he could come back to Uruk and other cities and tell the people “not to worry about YHVH anymore, he is dead. I killed him over in the Lebanon mountains. So just live however you like, I will be your king and take care of you.”

There are still other parallels between the Bible and the Gilgamesh epic: “YaHVeH” has a somewhat similar sound to “Huwawa.” Gilgamesh did just as the “sons of god” in Genesis 6 did. The “sons of god” forcibly took men’s wives. The Epic says that is precisely what Gilgamesh did. The Bible calls Nimrod a tyrant, and Gilgamesh was a tyrant. There was a Flood in the Bible, there is a flood in the Epic. Cush is mentioned in the Bible, Kish in the Epic. Erech is mentioned in Scripture, Uruk was Gilgamesh’s city. Gilgamesh made a trip to see the survivor of the Flood. This was more likely Ham than Noah, since “Nimrod” was Ham’s grandson! Historically, Gilgamesh was of the first dynasty of Uruk. As Jacobsen points out (1939: 157), kings before Gilgamesh may be fictional, but not likely. The fact that the Gilgamesh Epic also contains the Deluge story would indicate a close link with events immediately following the Flood. S.N. Kramer says,

A few years ago one would have strongly doubted his (historical) existence . . . we now have the certitude that the time of Gilgamesh corresponds to the earliest period of Mesopotamian history. (Kramer 1959: 117)

Originally established by Nimrod (Genesis 10:11), and today known as Nimrud, Calah became an important city in Iraq. This is an artist’s reconstruction of the interior of Tiglath-pileser III’s palace (late seventh century BC).

What a contrast Psalm 2 is compared with the Gilgamesh Epic!

Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the LORD and against his Anointed One. “Let us break their chains,” they say, “and throw off their fetters.” The One enthroned in heaven laughs, the Lord scoffs at them. Then he rebukes them in his anger and terrifies them in his wrath, saying, “I have installed my King on Zion, my holy hill.” I will proclaim the decree of the LORD: He said to me, “you are my Son, today I have become your Father, Ask of me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession. You will rule them with an iron scepter; you will dash them to pieces like pottery.” Therefore, you kings, be wise; he warned, you rulers of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry and you be destroyed in your way, for his wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him.   (Psalm 2)

 

Ancient Egyptian and Nahuatl

Published November 3, 2015 by amaic

nahuatl

Does the Name ‘Senenmut’ Reflect the Hebrew ‘Solomon’?

 

Part Two:

Egyptian and Nahuatl

  

by

 Damien F. Mackey

  

This short Part Two is not primarily about Senenmut.

It is really about the close similarity between ancient Egyptian and Nahuatl.  

Nahuatl appears to add the letter “l” which is uncommon in Egyptian, as noted in Part One in relation to the Egyptian, “Senenmut”, representing Hebrew “Shelomith” (or Solomon).

 

“One very obvious characteristic of the nahuatl language is the extensive use of the letter “l” in most of the words, either as ending to the words or juxtaposed to consonants and vowels within the words. One of the very apparent characteristics of the ancient Egyptian language is the almost total absence of the use of the letter “l” within most of its word-concepts. The letter “l” appears as an ending of words only a handful of times in E.A. Wallis Budge’s work, An Egyptian Hieroglyphic Dictionary. It would appear that this very dissimilar characteristic between these two languages would discourage anyone from considering a comparative analysis of possible linguistic correspondence between these two very apparently distinct idioms”.

Thus writes Charles William Johnson, in his fascinating article:

Linguistic Correspondence: Nahuatl and Ancient Egyptian

http://www.earthmatrix.com/linguistic/nahuatl.htm

 

According to Johnson:

In our more detailed analyses of the possible correspondence among words of the ancient Egyptian language and nahuatland maya, we have seen that some word-concepts are almost exactly the same in phonetic values. Furthermore, the maya glyphs and ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs share extremely common designs in similar/same word-concepts.

Today, the idea of linguistic correspondence among the Indo-European languages is a widespread fact. From the still unknown Indo-European mother language it is thought came Sanskrit (and the contemporary languages of Pakistan and India); Persian; and Greek, Latin (and many contemporary European languages). The correspondence of similar/same words among the Latin languages is quite visible, with Spanish words, for example, resembling those of French, Italian and Portuguese. English resembles the Teutonic ones, such as, German, Dutch and the Scandinavian languages.

On the other hand, no apparent linguistic correspondence has been observed between ancient Egyptian and languages such as nahuatl or maya, at least to any significant scholarly degree. In the aforementioned essay, we have examined numerous correspondences between word-concepts (and some glyphs) between the ancient Egyptian language and the maya system. The word for day name in maya is ahau, which means place or time in ancient Egyptian. Hom is ballcourt in maya; hem means little ball in ancient Egyptian. Ik means air in maya ; to suspend in the air is ikh in ancient Egyptian. Nichim signifies flower in maya; nehem means bud, flower in ancient Egyptian. And so on, for hundreds of word-concepts that we have examined in the comparison of these two languages.

When similar kinds of linguistic correspondences were perceived by William Jones, in the latter part of the eighteenth century, between Sanskrit and other languages, such examples were sufficient to convince scholars that all of those languages probably came from a mother tongue, the Indo-European language. Today, when linguistic correspondence is observed between the ancient Mesoamerican languages and ancient Egyptian, scholars are unwilling or hesitant to accept the idea that the same laws of linguistics may apply. The reason for this is quite simple: there is no historical basis for considering the possibility that the peoples of these different languages had any physical contact among themselves. Physical contact among the peoples who descended from the Indo-European family is established by historical data. There is no obvious historical data to think that the peoples of ancient Mesoamerica and the peoples of ancient Egypt ever met or came into physical contact with one another.

Nevertheless, historical data aside for the moment, let us examine some of the obvious examples of linguistic correspondence between nahuatl and the ancient Egyptian language.

One very obvious characteristic of the nahuatl language is the extensive use of the letter “l” in most of the words, either as ending to the words or juxtaposed to consonants and vowels within the words. One of the very apparent characteristics of the ancient Egyptian language is the almost total absence of the use of the letter “l” within most of its word-concepts. The letter “l” appears as an ending of words only a handful of times in E.A. Wallis Budge’s work, An Egyptian Hieroglyphic Dictionary. It would appear that this very dissimilar characteristic between these two languages would discourage anyone from considering a comparative analysis of possible linguistic correspondence between these two very apparently distinct idioms.

However, as we eliminate the letter “l” from the nahuatl words, the remaining phonemes (listed in brackets) resemble the phonemes and morphemes of ancient Egyptian in many cases. Let us offer only a few of such examples to consider a possible linguistic correspondence between these two fascinating systems of human speech.

Nahuatl Egyptian
canoe ACAL [aca-] AQAI boat (page 139b from Budge’s work cited above)
reed ACATL[acat-] AQ AKHAH-T reed (139b) reed (8a)
a well AMELLI [ame-i] AMAM place with water in them, wells (121b)
house CALLI [ca-i] KA house (783a)
serpent

COATL [coat-]

….

KHUT

snake (30b)

….

Linguistic correspondence between nahuatl and ancient Egyptian appears to represent a smoking gun; that is, a trace of evidence that these two peoples did enjoy some kind of contact between themselves ages ago. The fact that we have no real evidence of said contact, or that we have been unable to find any such evidence, should not serve as the basis for denying the possibility of that contact. To attribute all of these similarities in sound, symbol and meaning to mere happenstance seems to be a very unscientific way of resolving an annoying issue. To admit the possibility of physical contact between these cultures has implications for our own interpretation of history and the aspect of technological development of our societies. Such fears are unfounded, given the already obvious fact that our technical know-how could probably not reproduce and build something as majestic as the Great Pyramid.

[End of quote]

It is probably as a result of the evolutionary view of things – according to which human beings sprang up from lower animal forms, all in their various places – that anthropologists and historians are unable to make the obvious connections between cultures of similar types, that shared language characteristics, pyramid building technology, and hieroglyphics, to name just a few common features.

The wise King Solomon’s (Senenmut’s?) view of human origins was quite different from this, and far more enlightened, I believe:

“For God created man to be immortal,

and made him to be an image

of his own eternity.”

Wisdom of Solomon 2:23

Philistines and Persians. Part Four

Published October 22, 2015 by amaic

Keret

Velikovsky and those ‘Peleset’

 Part Four: The Cherethites

by

Damien F. Mackey

 

————————————————————————————————————-

It seems likely from Ezekiel 25:16: ‘Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, Behold, I will stretch out my hand against the Philistines, and I will cut off the Cherethites and destroy the rest of the seacoast’, that the Cherethites [or Kerethites, Cerethim] may also have been of Philistine stock.

————————————————————————————————————-

JewishEncyclopedia is of this opinion (http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/4303-cherethites

 

CHERETHITES or CHERETHIM.

By: Emil G. Hirsch, W. Max Muller, Louis Ginzberg

….

Probably the name of a part of the Philistines; usually, however, designating the whole nation, as in Zeph. ii. 5, where “the nation of the Cherethites” evidently means the Philistines in general. Similarly, Ezek. xxv. 16 and xxx. 5 belong here. A. V. translates “the children of the land [that is in] league.” But the true reading after the Ethiopic and partly after the LXX. (which omits the word “land”) is: “the children of the Kerethi” (compare Cornill’s “Ezekiel”). In Ezek. xxx. 5, where “the children of the land that is in league” are mentioned among the allies of Egypt, the whole of the Philistines must be meant. ….

[End of quote]

A very close connection between the nations of Egypt and Philistia was archaeologically pointed out by Dr. John Osgood, as I noted in:

Pharaoh of Abraham and Isaac

https://www.academia.edu/3689904/Pharaoh_of_Abraham_and_Isaac

…. Upon close examination the Book of Genesis affords us with several vital clues about the pharaoh encountered by Abram and Sarai that ought to assist us in determining just who was this enigmatic ruler in the Egyptian records. From a study of the structure of the relevant Genesis passages, from toledôt and chiasmus,

as explained in our article,  Abram’s“Pharaoh” Biblically Named and Archaeologically Identified (http://houseofgold.blog.com/2011/01/09/abram%E2%80%99s-%E2%80%9Cpharaoh%E2%80%9D-biblically-named-and-archaeologically-identified/)

we learned that the biblical pharaoh:

Was the same as the Abimelech of Gerar, ruler of the Philistines, contemporaneous with both Abram (Abraham) and Isaac.

Which means that:

This particular pharaoh must have reigned for at least 60+ years

(the span from Abram’s

famine to the marriage of Isaac and Rebekah).

 

We have also learned from archaeological analysis (see http://creation.com/the-times-of-abraham) that:

Abram was extremely close in time to pharaoh Narmer of Dynasty 0 or 1.

Dr. John Osgood has already done much of the “spade work” for us here, firstly by

nailing the archaeology of En-geddi at the time of Abram (in the context of Genesis 14) to the Late Chalcolithic period, corresponding to Ghassul IV in Palestine’s southern Jordan Valley; Stratum V at Arad; and the Gerzean period in Egypt (“The Times of Abraham”, Ex Nihilo TJ, Vol. 2, 1986, pp. 77-87); and secondly by showing that, immediately following this period, there was a migration out of Egypt into Philistia, bringing an entirely new culture (= Early Bronze I, Stratum IV at Arad). P. 86: “In all likelihood Egypt used northern Sinai as a springboard for forcing her way into Canaan with the result that all of southern Canaan became an Egyptian domain”.

[End of quote]

 

King David’s Philistine Contingent

Now, it should not really surprise us that King David may have had a loyal band of Philistines serving as his guardsmen (perhaps), as we already found in Part Two: (I Chronicles 18:17): “Benaiah son of Jehoiada was over the Kerethites and Pelethites; and David’s sons were chief officials at the king’s side”.

John R. Salverda, again, who has also noted that the Greek drama of Cadmus draws heavily upon the biblical narratives about David, has made the following perceptive observation relevant to this article:

 

David as Cadmus (Part One)

http://www.academia.edu/3856448/David_as_Cadmus_Part_One_

Another source of David’s army, a group of volunteers from Gath, called “Gittites” (also called “mighty men” or “Gibborim.” These Gittites are called Gibborim by the Septuagint and by Josephus.) may have served as an “inspirational” model for the Greek myth. David seems to have earned no small measure of respect amongst the Philistines, especially those of Goliath’s hometown Gath, this may be due to the giant’s, little noted, taunting pledge;

“And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, . . . And he stood and cried unto the armies of Israel, and said unto them, . . . choose you a man for you, and let him come down to me. If he be able to fight with me, and to kill me, then will we be your servants: but if I prevail against him, and kill him, then shall ye be our servants, and serve us.” (1st Samuel 17:4-9).

These, the words of Goliath’s own mouth, may indeed have had something to do with the fact that David was able to find refuge among the Philistines at the city of Gath when King Saul had made him his enemy. David stayed with the Philistines for more than a year and was eventually made a commander of a Gittite contingent of the Philistine army. David retained the city of Ziklag and 600 soldiers from Gath who swore allegiance to him and were his faithful men. It is almost as if many of the Philistines from the city of Gath, the home town of Goliath, were honoring the pledge of their champion to serve under David in the event that he should kill Goliath.

This is perhaps another way to understand how Cadmus could obtain soldiers from the teeth (his word) of the slain monster (Goliath). ….