The origin of God (Exodus Book 4)


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Rather, it is generally agreed that no people would freely invent a history of slavery and that the events told in the first chapters of the book have a historical basis. Either he or his son Merneptah was the pharaoh of the Exodus. They were Hebrews, possibly those who had come to Egypt from Canaan when the Hyksos ruled and were enslaved when the latter fell from power in the 16th century B. This highly speculative theory has not been taken into account in the preparation of this commentary.

Rather, we have proceeded from the text as it now stands, and in this way—after its final redaction—it has been accepted by Israel and has exerted an enormous influence. Whether or not the events happened exactly as described is in the final instance less important than the way in which they were experienced and comprehended.

The material contained in Exodus may be classified as consisting of biography, narrative, poetry, law, and archival records. A number of major and minor motifs are clearly discernible, some of which are paralleled in other biblical literature and in ancient Near Eastern texts. The wilderness theme: A person or nation has to be isolated and refined by trial in the desolate desert. The covenant theme: The divine or earthly suzerain and his vassal enter into a treaty which sets forth the obligations of both partners. The text of the book as we now have it is the result of a long literary development.

In part it goes back to old traditions which were transmitted orally at first and then committed to writing. That being the case, are there elements in Exodus which may be assigned to Moses and his time? Most likely some traditions went back to him and others may be even older. As the centuries wore on, new materials were added and old ones altered so that even within one segment we may now find diverse reflections.

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Old Testament Theology in a Canonical Context. Philadelphia, PA: Fortress Press, Cross, F. The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church. Elwell, Walter A. Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible. Kruse, C. Matthews, Victor H. The Old Testament: Text and Context.

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Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishing, Pate, C. Randolph, Tucker Wade Dennis Jr. Walton, John H. Wildavsky, Aaron. Wood, D.


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New Bible Dictionary. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. Skip to content. Most authors and scholars would agree that the theocracy in Israel was established at Mount Sinai Moses received the Ten Commandments directly from God. References Carson, D. Stuart, Douglas K.

House, Paul R. Orlinsky, Harry M. Ancient Israel. Share this: Email Print. Like this: Like Loading Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:. Email required Address never made public.

Exodus: History or Mythic Tale? | My Jewish Learning

Name required. The historical validity of this narrative is controversial. Some scholars stress the lack of Egyptian evidence testifying to the enslavement of the Israelites, pointing out that very little Egyptian influence is discernible in biblical literature and in ancient Hebrew culture.


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If such a tradition exists, it must reflect an historical truth. There is no doubt that slavery played a major role in the structure of the Egyptian state. Finally, the reign of Ramses II B. But the only contemporary Egyptian source which actually mentions Israel is the stela pillar with inscription of King Merneptah from the fifth year of his reign B.

This single fact, however, does not resolve the enigma.

Was Moses “a god”? Exodus 4:16 and 7:1

Obviously, the orthodox tradition accepts the biblical account literally, despite all the miracles it describes. There are scholars who seek to explain the miraculous events in rational and natural terms. They refer to ancient disasters which befell Egypt—floods, drought, slave rebellions, and invasions.

National Geographic Exodus Revealed

Could these not be the ten plagues of Egypt?

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