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I am posting here the “Maggid,” the telling of the Exodus, excerpted from the Passover Haggadah [The Alien’s Haggadah] which I have just posted in the Pages. I wrote this last year for Passover.    I welcome your comments and critique.                                                         Thank you, Lawrence Jones

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We tell the story of the exodus.  The fifth part of the Haggadah is the Maggid, which means “the expounding.”   Everything is up for discussion.

Insiders may tell of the exodus as a reminiscence about ancestors.  But this is the Haggadah of the aliens.  We, like Abraham, are insiders who come from the outside.  We come in because God has put it in our hearts to do so.  We are free to scrutinize the narrative as we please, in order to see clearly how it belongs to us and why it matters that we retain its memory.

In the beginning God, perhaps, could have made the world to be static, like a mountain or a sculpture.  Perhaps it would have been a finished work.  But there would have been no room for human consciousness and freedom and the processes of learning and becoming.

God did not make the world to be static.  He made suns and planets in motion.  Inseparable from motion is time.  He made us and put us in this world where we live and learn in time.  Life takes time.  And time makes life possible.

An apparent tragedy took place in the time of our first beginnings. The world at large went into rebellion against its Creator.  The record suggests that God seemed to withdraw from the world for a while.

Then God discovered Abraham, a citizen of ancient Iraq, and came to him.  He found in him someone who refused to accept a world that did not include direct knowledge of the  God above all worlds.   Josephus claims that Abraham studied the sky and discovered that the planets are subordinate to an overarching order, and so concluded that none of them were gods, but that the true God must be above every elemental body.

Abraham is reputed to have gone into his father’s idol shop and broken all but one idol .  When his father asked what happened, Abraham told him that the one idol had done it.  Abraham’s father did not believe him.  Abraham took this as confirmation that even his father, the vendor of gods, knew better than to credit them with real power.

Abraham abandoned his country by God’s command.  God communicated broad objectives to him, and Abraham lived a nomad’s life in pursuit of them.  God set out to make a new beginning with Abraham, a project that would be completed over a long period of time.  God promised Abraham that from him would come kings and nations and a land for himself and for his children…but not right away.  To this day, the project is not complete.

The actual transcendence of that vision is mostly ignored in this time when so many claim a right, here and now, to the land of promise.  The book of Hebrews retains for us a record of the quality of that vision in the mind of Abraham and of Moses:

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his           inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.       By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise.  For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God….All these people were still living by faith when they died.  They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance.  And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth….

By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter.  He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time.  He regarded disgrace for the sake of the Messiah as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward…By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch the firstborn of Israel….These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised.  God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.   [Hebrews 11]

God informed Abraham’s descendants that physical descent was only the circumstantial ground for participation in the promise.  Genetic Israel is the ancient amphitheater in which the world drama begins.  Real participation in the promise is a matter of consciousness and heart.  The promise to Abraham is a platform in history which furnishes to all of us the context in which to discover God acting in time and in history.  The hope of belonging to the people of God is for all people.

God, working in time, began with Abraham and started forming for himself a people.  He indicated from the beginning that progress would be convoluted.  He told Abraham that his near descendants would be enslaved inside a foreign nation for four hundred years, and that they would then come out and know liberation and continue on their way toward the fulfillment of the promise.

Abraham had a grandson, Jacob.  Jacob had twelve sons and one daughter.  Jacob’s favorite, Joseph, found himself victim to the jealousy of his brothers.  They held him in a pit and sold him to a passing caravan on its way to trade inEgypt.  God protected Joseph.  Joseph found favor inEgyptand became second only to the king.  Joseph’s entire family later joined him inEgypt.  They settled in Goshen, near the Nile delta.  About three hundred and fifty years later, Moses was born, a great grandson of Joseph’s brother Levi.  By this time the children of Abraham were in slavery.  The nobility of Joseph was forgotten, and the rugged community was judged by Pharaoh to need suppression.

Following the historic record of the Torah, the first stirrings of the exodus from Egypt were in the heart of God, as he ruminated on the end of the four hundred years and listened to the groaning of the descendants of Abraham.

Moses was raised as an insider to all the power and wealth ofEgypt.  At a time when Pharaoh was killing Hebrew children, the infant Moses had been discovered and adopted by a daughter of the king.  In maturity, however, his heart lay with the people of Abraham.  Unfortunately his passion surpassed his self control.  He made himself an outsider when he killed an Egyptian overlord who had been beating a Hebrew slave.

Moses escaped from Egypt, crossed theSinai peninsula, and arrived in Midian, where he found welcome in the home of a priest named Jethro.  Moses married his daughter, Zipporah.  He spent most of the next forty years in the hills of the Sinai, caring for the sheep of his new father-in-law, Jethro.

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The success of the Exodus hinged upon God’s revelation of the truth of his being and the nature of his character to two individuals, Moses and the Egyptian king.  God established the condition that he would illustrate in Egypt his power above every petty idol until the pharaoh, of his own will, would respect God’s demand that the children of Abraham be set free.

But Moses also had to learn who God is before he could actually serve God in the project which was assigned to him. His individual purchase upon the being and person of God was his profound starting point, above every point of skill or courage or education.

Moses was leading his father-in-law’s sheep across Mt. Horeb, also known as Mt.  Sinai and “the mountain of God.”  Here on this mountain God came before Moses to tell him of his concern for Moses and his people, and to explain to him that he, Moses, should become the central figure in a plan to free his people fromEgypt.

Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the desert and came to Horeb, the mountain of God.  There the angel of God [Malach Yahveh] appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush.  Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. So Moses thought, I will go over and see this strange sight – why the bush does not burn up.

When Yahveh saw that he had gone over to look, God [Elohim] called to him from within the bush, “Moses! Moses!”  

And Moses said, “Here I am.”

“Do not come any closer,” God said.  “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.”  Then he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.”  At this Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God.

The being and character of God began to unfold before Moses.  God had now appeared before him as the angel of God.  He had announced himself to be Eternal God, and he had introduced himself in terms of his role in Moses’ roots and personal history.

The Lord said, “I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt.  I have           heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about      their suffering.  So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into  a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey…So now, go.  I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt.”

Moses now presented to God a long line of excuses, questioning his own being, wondering whether he was really of a nature to lead a people out ofEgypt.

But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I          should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt?”

            And God said, “I will be with you…”  [Ehyeh imach]

This response was spoken in the Hebrew imperfect tense, expressing action which is both present and continuous into the future.  We also consider that the verb “to be” has a more active meaning [“the act of being”] in Hebrew than in English.  It would be more accurate to translate the response of God to Moses as,

Now and on into the future, I am and shall be being with you.”

Moses now ventured to ask another question, ostensibly for the sake of his presentation to the people back inEgypt, but undoubtedly also for his own assurance:

Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’  Then what shall I tell them?”                                                                Exodus 3.13

In the drama of a visual and audible encounter with God, it was reasonable, if one had the courage, to ask God his name.  And it was clever to ask it obliquely, as Moses did here.

The “God of his fathers” had been known to his fathers as “Master” and “Almighty God”, names which speak generically of omnipotence and lordship over the earth.  God had also revealed himself to them in daily events in the persona of the angel of God, but in those moments he had spoken of himself as “God” [ELOHIM], again not so much a name as a title marking his being at the pinnacle of all things.  Furthermore, when Jacob, struggling with God at the river, asked the angel of God his name, the reply was “Why do you ask after my name?”

Now God was going to present to Moses a Name which, like other ancient names, was meant to be an insight into the essential character of the one who is named.  This name was about to play a very important role in the events of the Exodus.

God said to Moses, “EHYEH ASHER EHYEH.”  This is what you are to say to the Israelites: “EHYEH  has sent me to you.”                                                                                  

God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, “YAHVEH, the God of your fathers – the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob – has sent me to you.”  This is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation.”                Exodus 3.14,15

Now the content of the phrase-name EHYEH ASHER EHYEH [to which YAHVEH corresponds] must be seen in the context 1.] that it is given by God as his Name, as an  appellation which is intended to be a mark of his essential character, and 2.] that to the giving of the name God appends the remark that it is his name forever.

The relevance of this name to the progress of the Exodus history must be seen in another context:

God was about to instruct Moses to go, with associates, before Pharaoh and present to him the historical expectations of “YAHVEH”:

“Go, assemble the elders of Israel… The elders of Israel will listen to you.  Then you and the elders are to go to the king of Egypt and say to him, ‘YAHVEH, the God [ELOHIM ] of the Hebrews, has met with us.  Let us take a three-day journey into the desert to offer sacrifices to YAHVEH our ELOHIM.’”  Exodus 3.18

When Pharaoh was ultimately presented with this message, his reply was as follows:

“Who is YAHVEH that I should obey him and let Israel go?  I do not know YAHVEH and I will not let Israel go.”

By Egyptian standards, Pharaoh himself was like a god, and lord over a great nation.  Why should he listen to the God of a clan of slaves?  In the coming sequence of signs and plagues which were presented to Pharaoh, he would learn the deepest significance of the name “YAHVEH.”

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For our own understanding we can look into the form of the Hebrew words being used, because there is no simple translation into English of the Name as it was given in Hebrew.

First we note that YAHVEH, loosely translated “he is”, is the third person singular form of EHYEH, in the first person, which loosely translates as “I am.”  God says of himself, “I am” and we say of him, “He is.” They both have as root the Hebrew verb “to be.”  As God refers to himself as “Ehyeh” and we refer to him as “Yahveh,” then we may also conclude that the name of God transcends the form of most names: the vehicle of a given recognizable sound.  Rather the vehicle of his Name is a recognizable verb: past, present, and future being.

Next we consider that ancient Hebrew, unlike modern Hebrew and unlike English or the Romance languages, has only two tenses, and they are not so much statements of time as much as they indicate stages of completion or realization.

The perfect tense is used to communicate action which is complete, as in “He has eaten,” or, “He left.”  The imperfect tense communicates action which is ongoing and not yet completed.  In some cases it is used to denote actions which, it may be assumed, will soon be over, such as “He is leaving,” or, “He is eating.”   We may take the meaning to be “He is and, for a short time, will be eating.”

In other cases the imperfect form of the verb is used to denote actions which are incomplete because they have no foreseeable end, such as “He is and shall be ruling.”  Or “The earth is and will be turning.”  It is also used to denote habitual action, such as “The sun [past, present, and on into the future] {habitually} sets in the West.”

EHYEH is the first person imperfect of the verb “to be”, so it can be translated as

“I am and shall be,” or “I am and shall be being”. 

This explains why some translations translate the word in the present tense, while others translate it in the future tense.  None of them try to enter into the mysteries of the Hebrew verb, I suppose because they would have to do it for the entire text of the Bible.

As God first gives his name to Moses, he says, EHYEH ASHER EHYEH.   ASHER means primarily “that which” and can also mean “where” or “who.”  So we come to the moment of God speaking to Moses and making this statement about himself:

“Ehyeh asher ehyeh:” I am and shall be being that which I am and shall be. [and this is my Name, my essential character, and it will be so not just into the simple future but forever.]

Then he gives Moses a shortened form of this phrase, saying

“Tell the Israelites that Ehyeh [I am and shall be being] has sent you.

If we look at the verb “to be” we see that it commonly expresses meaning on two levels.  It can refer to the possession of an essential nature or it can refer to our act of living out that essential nature. In reference to our possession of our essential nature, we might say “I am unfettered” or “I am free.”  In referring to the action of living out our nature, we might say, “I am present.”  I would be using both levels of meaning in the statement “I am what I am.”  I would be asserting that I am in my actual living that which I am in my essential being, or conversely, that I am in my essential being the same as what I manifest myself to be in my actual living.

These last statements are close to what God is presenting to Moses as his name, EHYEH, but God is speaking in the Hebrew imperfect tense.  Therefore we must augment the meaning to include unlimited continuity into the future:

I am and shall be being actually and historically that which I am, now and for eternity, in my essential nature.

Then, if we consider what we are saying when we say YAHVEH, we interpret it to be

He is and shall be actually and historically that which he is, now and forever, in his essential nature.

God is presenting here his absolute and constant faithfulness to his own being.  He is also presenting to us his commitment to actual space and time and human history.  It was this quality which Jesus exhibited to us on earth, and which God hopes to reveal to us in the unfolding of history and in our lives.

When Moses came before Pharaoh with the demand of YAHVEH that the Hebrew people be released in order to worship Him in the desert, Pharaoh claimed to be ignorant of either the person or the authority of YAHVEH.  Of course, if he was ignorant of the activity of the God of Creation in all of human history, including Creation, then Pharaoh was ignorant of the fact that, as Creator, God is the ground of all being, and that in his faithfulness to his own being God will act faithfully toward his creation and ultimately will not allow anything to take his creation from him.  God’s faithfulness and his commitment to human history are both encoded in his name.  And this means that no matter how much he allows rebellion to have its day, ultimately the rebellion of the world will not be allowed to subvert his plans for his creation.

Moses and company went before Pharaoh and presented him with Yahveh’s demand that his people be released for three days of worship in the desert.  Pharaoh said,

“Who is Yahveh that I should obey him and let Israel go?  I do not know Yahveh and I will not let Israel go.”

In Egypt the pharaoh himself was at the center of popular religion. Old Kingdom pyramid texts [ca. 2780-2250] portray the order of nature and society, in this world and in the next, as aspects of the being of a goddess named Maat.  Pharaoh was considered by his people to be human, but a descendant of the gods.  As such he stood as intermediary between the people and Maat, between chaos and order.

Egyptians believed that the phenomena of nature were divine forces in and of themselves, therefore proper objects of true religion, expected to be of interest to their gods.

At the heart of the order of the universe people looked to the regular activity of cyclical movements in time: the cycle of the sun god Ra through the sky, the Nile and its yearly flood cycle, and the regular succession of kings.

Earth, water, sky, air, underworld, each elemental part had a personified being in a demigod or demigoddess with a name.  In everything, pharaoh was the bridge and the powerful consort of the gods.  He was identified with Horus.  He was seen as the son of Ra.  He was also associated with Osiris, father of Horus and god of death and rebirth.

The Egyptian vision of the divine order, in all aspects, would be challenged by the coming events.

Moses told the Pharaoh that Yahveh demanded that the people be set free to worship him for three days in the desert.  In relaying this message, Moses was suggesting to Pharaoh that the people of Abraham were held by a claim of an order higher than the claim of Egypt’s royal and divinely appointed lord.  This did not set well with Pharaoh. He indignantly began to make life harder for the Hebrews.  They in turn complained to Moses.  Moses immediately returned to God with his own complaint:

“O Yahveh, why have you brought trouble upon this people? Ever since I went to Pharaoh to speak in your name, he has brought trouble upon this people, and you have not rescued your people at all.”  Exodus 5.22,23

Yahveh replied that he was going to act so forcefully in Pharaoh’s world that he would ultimately recognize the person and authority of Yahveh as the the God of all creation, and Pharaoh would willingly end their slavery and even drive them from Egypt:

Then Yahveh said to Moses, “Now you will see what I will do to Pharaoh:  Because of my mighty hand he will let them go; because of my mighty hand he will drive them out of his country.”  God [Elohim] also said to Moses, “I am Yahveh.  I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as God Almighty [El Shaddai] but by my name, Yahveh, I did not make myself known to them. I also established my covenant with them to give them the land of Canaan, where they lived as aliens.  Moreover, I have heard the groaning of the Israelites, whom the Egyptians are enslaving, and I have remembered my covenant.

Therefore say to the Israelites: “I [am] Yahveh, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians.  I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment.  I will take you as my own people, and I will be your God [Elohim].  Then you will know that I am Yahveh your Elohim, who brought you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians.  And I will bring you to the land I swore with uplifted hand to give to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob. I will give it to you as a possession.  I am Yahveh.”

 

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I Kings 6.1 places the Exodus at four hundred and eighty years before the foundation of the temple by Solomon.  There is a lot of support for the date of the founding of the temple within a few years of 966 B.C.  This means that the exodus occurred within a few years of 1446 B.C.

According to modern studies in Egyptian chronology, this places the arrival of Joseph in Egyptsomewhere in the 12th Dynasty and positions most of the years of slavery, up to the time of Moses, in the 13th Dynasty.

In the Brooklyn Museumthere is a papyrus scroll numbered 35:1446 which comes from the reign of the 13th Dynasty pharaoh Soberkhotep III, predecessor of Neferhotep I.  It is a decree of that pharaoh detailing a transfer of slaves.  Of the 95 names mentioned in the letter, 50% are Semitic in origin, including such names as Asher, Menahem, and Issachar.[i]

Eusebius, in the 4th c. A.D., records excerpts from the writings of a historian named Artapanus[ii] [3rd c. B.C.], in which it is claimed that Moses’ surrogate mother was a royal daughter named Merris who married Pharaoh Khenephres, also called Soberkhotep IV.  This makes Pharaoh Khenephres the “step father” of Moses.  It also makes Khenephres the pharaoh from whom Moses fled in 1487 B.C. Consequently, forty years later, the royal heir of Khenefres, Thutmose I / Dudimose I, would have been the pharaoh of the exodus.[iii] And Thutmose might have been the “step brother” of Moses.

The Egyptian historian Manetho [ 3rd c. B.C., Ptolemaic] supports the claim that in the reign of Dudimose I [Tutimaios], “a blast of God smote us….” and he tells how Egypt collapsed during his reign….following which the country was overrun by the Hyksos/Amalekites.[iv]

The Ipuwer Papyrus may be a description of the plagues sent through Moses.  It may also describe the land under the Amalekite invasion which came upon the heels of the Exodus. It is a long narrative in the tone of these excerpts:

Plague is throughout the land….Blood is everywhere….The river is blood, yet men drink of it….a foreign tribe from abroad has come to Egypt… the children of princes are dashed against the walls.[v]

Archaeology of the city of Avaris in Goshen reveals extraordinary numbers of infant deaths, which accords with the decree of pharaoh to kill the infant males.  It also reveals a moment of sudden mass burial followed by the abandonment of the site and later visitation by another Asiatic group without knowledge of Egyptian customs.[vi]

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The Bible explains that through the hand of Moses God brought into Egypt ten plagues, each an increment in the demonstration that the being of all creation is His domain.

The water of the Nile was turned to blood, whether within the banks of the river or in jars.  An invasion of frogs followed, covering the country and the cities.  Then the dust of Egypt became gnats, and swarms of flies filled the houses and covered the ground.  Pharaoh remained unwilling to release the people from slavery.

A fifth plague brought death to all the livestock ofEgypt, and God demanded of pharaoh through Moses, “Let my people go that they may worship me.”

Yet his heart was unyielding and he would not let the people go.”

Boils broke out on both men and animals.  Hail destroyed every living thing that was not inside shelter, stripping fields and trees except inside Goshen.

Locusts filled the houses and covered the ground, devouring what was left of the vegetation.  Prior to the plague of locusts, pharaoh’s officials had said to him,

“Let the people go so that they may worship their God Yahveh.  Do you not see that Egypt is destroyed?”

After the plague of locusts, Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said,

“I have sinned against Yahveh your God and against you.  Now forgive my sin once more and pray to Yahveh your God to take this deadly plague away from me.”

But once the locusts were gone, his stubbornness returned.  Then a total darkness “that could be felt” came over all of Egypt for three days.  This was a complete refutation of the pretension to worship Ra and a direct rebuke to Pharaoh, the “son” of Ra.  Now pharaoh vowed to Moses that he would destroy him if he ever saw him again.

Pharaoh knew that divine power was real in the world.  But he pursued a worship of demigods as it was served up to him by the conventional wisdom, cultivated their honor in ways that pleased the imagination of Egyptian society.  As we see in the present time, the urgency to bestow Tolerance liberally and equally on a world of diverse gods, leads to a condition in which all things are made equally without value.  For pharaoh it was imperative that all the people should know themselves to be without difference from other men.

But Yahveh was expressly interested in demonstrating that his people were called out from the world of rebellion, therefore under restraints greater than those placed upon other men.

And so there came one final plague, the death of the first-born children of the houses ofEgypt.  It was not a simple division along racial lines.  It was the promise of death to all the land, except for those houses marked with a sign of God’s mercy: the blood of sacrifice.  And on this night when so many would die, Jesus, the Lamb slain since the foundation of the world, was encoding into history his promise to die for mankind.

Moses carried the message to the people:

“This is what Yahveh says: ‘About midnight I will go throughout Egypt.  Every firstborn son in Egypt will die, from the firstborn son of Pharaoh who sits on the throne, to the firstborn son of the slave girl, who is behind the mill, and all the firstborn of the cattle as well.

…Each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household…The animals you choose must be year old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats…and all the people of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight.  Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs.  That same night they are to eat the meat roasted over the fire, along with bitter herbs and bread made without yeast….  Eat it in haste. It is the Passover of Yahveh….On this same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn—both men and animals—and will bring judgment on all the gods of Egypt.  I am Yahveh.  The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are; and when I see the blood, I will pass over you.  No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt….

Pharaoh discovered in heartbreak the truth of the name of Yahveh.  Through faith and obedience, Moses guided his people a little farther, to the discovery of the mercy of God.  Tonight we celebrate the Lamb slain since the foundation of the world, who keeps us for himself, and who makes it possible to place ourselves before God.

Footnotes:


[i]  “Before Moses, the Bible records that the Israelites were enslaved by their Egyptian hosts (Exodus 1:8-14). In the Brooklyn Museum resides a papyrus scroll numbered Brooklyn 35:1446 which was acquired in the late 19th century by Charles Wilbour. This dates to the reign of Sobekhotep III, the predecessor of Neferhotep I and so the pharaoh who reigned one generation before Moses. This papyrus is a decree by the pharaoh for a transfer of slaves. Of the 95 names of slaves mentioned in the letter, 50% are Semitic in origin. What is more, it lists the names of these slaves in the original Semitic language and then adds the Egyptian name that each had been assigned, which is something the Bible records the Egyptians as doing, cf. Joseph’s name given to him by pharaoh (Genesis 41:45). Some of the Semitic names are biblical and include:

[ii]  Clemens’ Stromata summarizes the writings of Artapanus, a Jewish historian who wrote Peri Iodaion (About the Jews). Artapanus is named by Eusebius in his Evangelicae Preparationis and his detailed account of the life of Moses is reported in his Pamphilis, Book 9, Ch. 27, 1-37.

[iii]  “Artapanus writes that a pharaoh named Palmanothes was persecuting the Israelites. His daughter Merris adopted a Hebrew child who grew up to be called prince Mousos. Merris married a pharaoh Khenephrês. Prince Mousos grew up to administer the land on behalf of this pharaoh. He led a military campaign against the Ethiopians who were invading Egypt; however, upon his return, Khenephrês grew jealous of his popularity. Mousos then fled to Arabia to return when Khenephrês died and lead the Israelites to freedom.”
– John Fulton, “A New Chronology – Synopsis of David Rohl’s book ‘A Test of Time’

[iv]  “Tutimaos [the pharaoh Dudimose, one of the later rulers of the 13th Dynasty]. In his reign, for what cause I know not, a blast of God smote us; and unexpectedly, from the regions of the East, invaders of obscure race marched in confidence of victory against our land. By main force they easily seized it without striking a blow; and having overpowered the rulers of the land, they then burned our cities ruthless, razed to the ground the temples of the gods, and treated all the natives with a cruel hostility, massacring some and leading into slavery the wives and children of others. Finally, they appointed as king one of their number who name was Salitis…”
– Josephus, quoting Manetho in Against Apion, Book1:14

[v] Ipuwer Papyrus, Papyrus Leiden  334, a hard to date papyrus copied by 19th Dynasty scribes.

[vi]  “The only period in Egyptian history with incontrovertible archaeological evidence for a large Asiatic population in the eastern delta (i.e. Goshen/Kessan) is the Second Intermediate Period…”
“The Israelite Sojourn inEgypt began in the late 12th Dynasty and continued throughout most of the 13th Dynasty. It is represented inEgypt’s archaeological record by the Asiatic culture known as Middle Bronze IIA. The main settlement of the Israelites in Egypt was located at the city of Avaris in the region of Goshen. Their archaeological remains are represented by the dwellings and tombs of Tell ed-Daba stata H to G/1.”

“…An analysis of the graves at Tell ed-Daba has shown that there were more females than males in the burial population of Avaris.”
In addition, “sixty-five per cent of all the burials were those of children under the age of eighteen months. Based on modern statistical evidence obtained from pre-modern societies we would expect the infant mortality rate to be around twenty to thirty percent.”
– David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 273, 277, 271

“At the end of stratum G/1 at Tell ed-Daba, which is roughly dated to the middle of the 13th Dynasty, Bietak and his archaeological team began to uncover a gruesome scene. All over the city of Avaristhey found shallow burial pits into which the victims of some terrible disaster had been hurriedly cast. There were no careful interments of the deceased. The bodies were not arranged in the proper burial fashion but rather thrown into the mass graves, one on top of the other. There were no grave goods placed with the corpses as was usually the custom.”
“…Analysis of the site archaeology suggests that a large part of the remaining population of the town abandoned their homes and departed from Avaris en masse. The site was then reoccupied after an interval of unknown duration by Asiatics who were not ‘Egyptianised’ like the previous population of stratum G.”
– David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 279

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