Thursday, November 22, 2012

Phoenician Judgment Postponed 400 years

The Amorites

And he said to Abram, Know of a surety that your seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years; And also that nation, whom they shall serve, will I judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance. And you shall go to your fathers in peace; you shall be buried in a good old age. But in the fourth generation they shall come here again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full. And it came to pass, that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp that passed between those pieces. In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, To your seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates: The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites, And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims, And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites.” (Genesis 15:13-21)

 [The map is from Wikimedia Commons under GNU license.]

The LORD (YHWH) lists 10 tribes which the descendants of Abraham were to drive out of the promised land between the Nile and the Euphrates rivers, but makes a special reference to the wealthiest of those tribes, the Amorites. The land of Amurru was north of Canaan, roughly from Tyre and Damascus north to Aleppo. Those who traded at their major ports for cedar and their unique dyes of purple and crimson (phoinos in Greek) called the area Phoenicia. A tribe of Amorites also lived in the lands west of the Jordan river. The first pharaoh of the fourth dynasty, Sneferu (1977-1953 BC), bought cedars from Byblos. Yahweh's promise to Abram came in 1921 BC when He decreed 400 years for the sins of the wealthy city-states of Amurru/Phoenicia to reach their peak of wickedness.

Exodus 12:41 and Galatians 3:16-17 reference the exodus as being 430 years from the Genesis 15 promise which was given to Abram on Nisan 14, 1921 BC. But the actual 400 years is from when Ishmael, the half-Egyptian son of Hagar, mocked Isaac when he was weaned in 1891 BC. The exodus occurred during the reign of Ramesses I on Nisan 14, 1491 BC.

The United States

The Amorites/Phoenicians avoided war and were the wealthiest nation of the old world. The United States of America have had unprecedented peace, and have been the wealthiest nation of the new world for most of its existence.
On April 29, 1607, a group from England erected a seven-foot cross at Cape Henry (now Virginia Beach), and Rev. Robert Hunt prayed the following: 
“Almighty God, by your great mercy we have reached this land, which we now claim and establish for Thy eternal purposes. We ask thee to open hearts and enlighten the understanding of the peoples of these shores to comprehend the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ.” (see CBN's First Landing the Movie)
The King James Version of the Holy Bible was completed in 1611, and Pilgrims brought it to America in 1620. Our country had every physical and spiritual advantage, but each generation must choose to love and obey King Jesus and disciple the next generation. Our heavenly Father graciously sent spiritual revivals and great awakenings to renew people's faith in the land.
Although no decree was made regarding the USA (unless you believe it is “mystery Babylon”, I certainly see a pattern which would signify the judgment and soon collapse of the United States.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Bible's Shishak was Heqakheperre Sheshonk IIa

The Bible's Shishak was Heqakheperre Sheshonk IIa
by Eve Engelbrite ©2012

There is evidence supporting why Heqakheperre Sheshonk IIa was the biblical Shishak and why Sheshonk I was not the biblical Shishak. The evidence makes the most historical sense in accordance to my new high chronology,1 and so I will provide the necessary background information. I maintain that Joshua retook the “country of Goshen2 in 1451-1444 BC during the reign of Rameses II (1480-1414 BC), and that the weak pharaohs of the 19th, 20th, and early 21st dynasties did nothing about it, except for Merenptah (1414-1394 BC) who retook a few cities from the new owners called “Israel”. Judge Deborah (1339-1299 BC) described a major volcanic eruption3 which occurred in the eighth year of Rameses III (1310 BC) when he allowed homeless Sea People to live among the Philistines.
Prince Hadad escaped to Sheshonk I and married queen Patareshnes' sister
As David conquered Edom; Hadad, the child prince of Edom, was carried off to Egypt by servants, and later returned to rule Edom as an adult. The history provides a very important clue.
For it came to pass, when David was in Edom, and Joab the captain of the host was gone up to bury the slain, after he had smitten every male in Edom . . . That Hadad fled, he and certain Edomites of his father's servants with him, to go into Egypt; Hadad being yet a little child. And they arose out of Midian, and came to Paran: and they took men with them out of Paran, and they came to Egypt, to Pharaoh king of Egypt; which gave him an house, and appointed him victuals, and gave him land. And Hadad found great favor in the sight of Pharaoh, so that he gave him to wife the sister of his own wife, the sister of Tahpenes the queen. And the sister of Tahpenes bore him Genubath his son, whom Tahpenes weaned in Pharaoh's house: and Genubath was in Pharaoh's household among the sons of Pharaoh. And when Hadad heard in Egypt that David slept with his fathers, and that Joab the captain of the host was dead, Hadad said to Pharaoh, Let me depart, that I may go to my own country. (I Kings 11:13-21)
I suggest that prince Hadad and company came under the protection of Sheshonk I, who had at least three sons, and his wife Patareshnes (a very similar name to Tahpenes).4 Her father was Nemareth, the "Great Chief of the Foreigners," and more likely open to a marriage arrangement with a foreigner. The sister of Patareshnes, Hadad's bride, is not named. I suggest this wedding took place about 1035 BC during the latter years of Sheshonk I.

Patareshnes has the syllables /pa/, /ta/, /resh/, and /nes/. Tahpanes has the syllables /ta/, /pa/, and /nes/; three out of four. Patareshnes was married to Sheshonk, whose name sounds like Shishak. The glyph for 'n' was sometimes dropped. Thus Sheshonk I was more likely to have lived during the reign of king David.
King David died in fall of 1015 BC, which was during the reign of Osorkon I when Hadad likely asked to return to Edom and was given leave. Unless the Bible actually names the pharaoh, you can not assume that only one pharaoh dealt with a particular Hebrew person in the text. And even when the Bible does name a pharaoh, several pharaohs used the same name.
I think Manetho's three other kings after Osorkon I were all sons named Sheshonk from Hedjkheperre Sheshonk I and three different wifes: Heqakheperre Sheshonk IIa to Karoama, Tutkheperre Sheshonk IIb to Patareshnes, and Maakheperre Sheshonk IIc to an unknown consort.

Ussher placed Jeroboam fleeing to Shishak in 978 BC based upon his knowledge of Egyptian chronology at the time; the date may be correct, but Ussher's Egyptian chronology was not. Many more artefacts have been discovered in Egypt and Israel since the seventeenth century. In the 19th century, better parameters were established for digging a site and for dating objects by the pottery types. In the 20th century the Egyptian chronology became the standard by which all other chronologies were based, but by the 21st century, archaeologists outside of Egypt realised Egypt's chronology was 200 years off. My chronology resolves those issues by basing all chronologies on the standard of the Holy Bible.

The Battles at the Wall (“Shur”)

Both Saul and David refer to fighting the Amalekites at Shur,5 and both Siamun and Sheshonk I have reference to battles against Asiatics, with Sheshonk I specifically citing the Bitter Lakes. According to the Prophecy of Neferty, Amenemhat I built the “Walls-of-the-Ruler to bar Asiatics from entering Egypt”. In Hebrew, the word “wall” is shur. Amenemhat I built a north/south barrier from the Bitter Lakes to El-Ballah Lake. I propose that Siamun had established Amalekite strongholds in the Sinai to protect trade on the road, known as the “way to Shur” (Genesis 16:7), between the wall of the eastern Nile delta and Israel.
In Tanis, where the majority of Siamun artifacts were found, a calcite bas-relief depicts Siamun in the traditional pose smiting an enemy holding a double axe. Avaris had been a port of commerce for Minoans during the early 18th dynasty; and Minoan-influenced Sea Peoples who used such axes had returned to live in the Nile delta during the early 20th dynasty. I conjecture that pharaoh Siamun drove the Judahites and Sea Peoples out of Goshen and reestablished Egypt's border at the Wall (Shur) of the Ruler. I further propose that about 1067 BC Siamun also held his Wall border when “Saul smote the Amalekites from Havilah until you come to Shur, that is over against Egypt.(I Samuel 15:7)

Twelve years later I suggest Sheshonk I aided general David in killing “the Amalekites . . . as you go to Shur” (I Samuel 27:8) at the Wall of the Ruler north of the Bitter Lakes. Sheshonk's badly broken stela at Karnak recorded his victory over the Sinai bedouin:
“[Iuput] the First [Prophet] of Amon-Re, . . . victory in the . . . lands of Asia, Lord of the Two Lands, Hej[kheper]re . . . Now [My Majesty] discovered [that . . .] [. . . they ] killed [. . . my soldiers and?] my leaders. Then His majesty pondered concerning them . . . Then His Majesty said to his entourage [that was in the following]: ['Behold . . .] these wretched deeds that they have done.' Then they said [before His Majesty . . .] [Then His Majesty went forth . . .], his chariotry following him, without their knowing. Now […] Among them His Majesty made a great slaughter […] and he [slew] them ashore on the bank of the Bitter Lakes. . . .”6
The discovery which Sheshonk I made during his first year as pharaoh may have been from reading Siamun's journals of how he repaid the bedouin who robbed his caravans and slew his soldiers, or it may have been a new and similar report. Or Siamun's journal may have boasted of how he took credit for Saul's slaughter at the wall/shur, and so Sheshonk I took credit for David's slaughter at the wall. Neither Saul nor David mentioned engaging Egyptian troops at their wall border.
Seeing the military might with which David dispatched the Amalekites may have caused Sheshonk I to avoid attacking Israel. Instead, Sheshonk I may have taken boats with troops to Byblos in the “lands of Asia” to restore Egypt's trade (and share of taxes) there.
Sheshonk I Traded with Abi-Baal who was Hiram's father
Byblite kings inscribed their names upon statues (modern example pictured) given to them from pharaohs with whom they traded. Sheshonk I gave Abi-Baal, king of Byblos, a seated statue of himself7 in recognition of their continued trade agreements. Sheshonk's son, Osorkon I, gave Eli-Baal a statue of himself.8
According to Josephus, Meander of Ephesus wrote “When Abi-baal was dead, his son Hiram received the kingdom from him, who, when he had lived fifty-three years, reigned thirty-four,” and that the construction of Solomon's Temple began in the twelfth year of Hiram's reign,9 which I place at 1011 BC. If so, Hiram reigned from 1023 to 989 BC. I suggest Abi-Baal willed his son Hiram to rule over Tyre, and willed his son Eli-Baal (to whom Osorkon I gave a statue) to succeed his father in Byblos. Hiram traded with both kings David and Solomon.
And Hiram king of Tyre sent messengers to David, and cedar trees, and carpenters, and masons: and they built David an house. (II Samuel 5:11)
So Hiram gave Solomon cedar trees and fir trees according to all his desire. And Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand measures of wheat for food to his household, and twenty measures of pure oil: thus gave Solomon to Hiram year by year. And the LORD gave Solomon wisdom, as he promised him: and there was peace between Hiram and Solomon; and they two made a league together. (I Kings 5:10-12)
A sarcophagus of a “son of Ahiram, king of Byblos”10 was discovered in Byblos in 1923 AD thus verifying the royal name of Hiram. The sarcophagus has winged sphinxes carved into it, which also verifies Phoenician trade with Egypt. Hiram's sarcophagus may be the large limestone one on a pedestal nicknamed Qabr Hiram southeast of Tyre.11
The pharaonic statues of Sheshonk I and Osorkon I sent to Phoenician kings Abi-Baal and Eli-Baal (who was contemporary with Hiram) provide another verification that Sheshonk I lived at least a generation before the biblical Shishak. Hiram traded with kings David and Solomon, and Osorkon I traded with Hiram's brother Eli-baal; thus making Heqakheperre Sheshonk IIa the better candidate for Shishak and a campaign in Israel during the fifth year of Solomon's son Rehoboam in 970 BC.
Near the Annals of Thutmose III in the Temple of Amun at Karnak, Sheshonk I recorded his dues “when I made it as thy tribute (i.e. Amun's) of the land of Canaan (Khuru) which had turned away from thee,”12 which I ascribe to the taxes he retrieved from the city of Megiddo. Aside from this obscure inscription, “no direct record survives” of Sheshonk I's temple gifts from a Canaanite campaign.13 I suggest that Sheshonk I's stela in Megiddo14 re-established that city alone in Israel as a vassal of Egypt in order to do trade with Egypt. The king of the city-state of Byblos was considered an equal by Sheshonk I just as king Solomon considered Hiram, king of Tyre, an equal. The wealth of the Phoenicians afforded them great latitude with the kingdoms around them.

Sheshonk I won victories in Phoenicia, Aram (Syria), Sinai and Nubia
Sheshonk I may have continued with his troops from Phoenicia15 north and east to defeat his enemies who were still attacking Egypt's vassals from the mountains, and he referred to these enemies by the area in which they lived: “two rivers” and “back-country”.
Amun's speech in Sheshonk's victory relief at Karnak concluded:
Every country that has come without number – Your Majesty has destroyed them in the completion of a moment. I have struck for you those who rebelled against you, suppressing for you the Asiatics. The armies of Mitanni – I have slain those belonging to them beneath your sandals.”16
The Egyptian word translated Mitanni is Nhrn referring to Aram-Naharim which means “Aram two rivers” and refers to the Aramaeans of the upper Tigris and upper Euphrates rivers who had carved out space for themselves near the Assyrians (descended from Shem's son, Asshur). According to his annals, Tiglath Pileser I (1115-1076 BC) fought “Mitanni”/Aramaeans about 50 years prior to Sheshonk I's attack. Both kings Saul and David fought in Aram-Zobah on the road through Damascus, and king David made it to the Euphrates river.17
Shem's son Aram had a son Uz who founded Damascus. Jacob married two wives from kinsfolk in the area of Padan-Aram (now southeast Turkey), so he likely learned Aramaic. Aramaic became the major business language of the eastern Mediterranean countries and spread to others with trade well beyond the time of Christ. The Aramaeans and Assyrians did not disappear but became known as different people groups over time. The Aramaeans were such a large population that they were classified further by the areas in which they lived.
And the children of Ammon came out, and put the battle in array at the entering in of the gate: and the Syrians [Aram] of Zoba, and of Rehob, and Ishtob, and Maacah, were by themselves in the field.” (II Samuel 10:8)
So they went up, and searched the land from the wilderness of Zin unto Rehob, as men come to Hamath” (Numbers 13:21)
A couple cities named Rehob exist in the south, but the Aramaeans lived in the land of Rehob (now Rechaiya) which contained the road to Hamath. Ishtob is the land of Tob.
Although the Mitanni empire had ceased to exist, the two rivers to which Sheshonk referred had not disappeared. Sheshonk I slew the armies of “two rivers,” yet none of those city names are listed on the victory wall. Cities #3, 7, 8 refer to Nubia, who are referenced in one of the central scenes of Sheshonk I and Iuput.
Smiting the chiefs of the Nubian tribesmen, of all inaccessible foreign lands, of all the lands of the Phoenicians, and foreign lands of the Asiatic back-country.”18
In this inscription instead of “two rivers” (Nhrn), Sheshonk I referred to the “Asiatic back-country” (phw.w St.[t]) which was another 100-200 miles northeast of Hamath. The statue given to Abi-Baal is evidence that Sheshonk I subdued Byblos whose ancient name was Gubla which may be #11 in his list with Megiddo #12 and rbyt (Beth-Rehob?) finishing the row at #13. But I conclude the rest of the cities on the victory wall were conquered by someone else who actually led a campaign against Israel.
Reign of Sheshonk I (1055-1022 BC)
Since Osorkon I's renewal of heb-sed inscription at Karnak “strongly suggests that Osorkon I reigned into his thirty-fourth year,”19 then Sheshonk I's renewal of heb-sed inscription at Karnak20 should also attribute to him at least 33 years. In Sheshonk I's 21st year he began a massive building project called “the Mansion of Hedjkheperre Setepenre in Thebes”. Some Egyptologists only give Sheshonk I the 21 years recorded on the Gebel es-Silsilah stela.
Gebel es-Silsilah Stela
This was a massive stela cut into the sandstone cliff almost 3 meters high by 2.5 meters wide with 57 columns of text. It mentioned heb-sed festival three times, and stated that the building of the heb-sed court (along with the pylons, colonnade, doors, and statues) was the main purpose in Sheshonk's “regnal year 21, second month of summer, on this day while his majesty was in residence at . . . Re-Horachty.”21 [In the latter years of Ramesses II, Re-Horachty was used to describe Pi-Ramesses.22] Sheshonk I was clearly preparing for his 30th year jubilee celebration 9 years in advance, so he likely knew about how long it would take to complete such a task.
According to a 2008 study, with modern tools and power it takes 0.217 million BTU's23 to quarry one ton of sandstone.24 That's just to cut it out of the earth, and does not include finishing, processing, or transporting it. In the early 1900's at the Excelsior Stone Quarry of sandstone, “The 10 ton blocks were cut so that they could be transported to Las Vegas using the 'Big Devil Wagon'. This frightful locomotive-like behemoth could haul 20 tons of cut stone on a single trip. The odd looking contraption also burned about 400 gallons of crude oil per day.”25 Quarrying and transporting sandstone takes a lot of time and energy.
Sheshonk I's heb-sed court “was located between the first and second pylon. The court enclosed the Sety II shrine and the northern section of the Ramesses III temple. The court was lined on its northern and southern sides with sandstone papyrus bud columns.”26 The following is from a Missouri quarry:
As a small 2 acre quarry, we hand-cut about 300 tons in a year. . . . Twenty cubic feet of sandstone weighs about 1.25ton (2500 lbs). . . . A 20 ft long 2 feet high wall that is stacked 1 foot deep = 20ft x 2 ft x 1 ft = 40 cu ft.”27
The completed heb-sed court measured 82 meters by 101 meters (269 X 331 feet), and the western gate had an opening of 17.70m (58 ft) and a total height of 27.50m (90 ft).28 I don't know the wall thickness of the court; but with just a one foot depth 6,423.75 tons of sandstone would be needed, which may have taken the ancient Egyptians at least four years to quarry.
The Gebel es-Silsilah quarry was located 40 miles north of Elephantine and 90 miles south of Thebes. To transport 6,000 tons of sandstone to the work site would have taken at least a year, and to dress and to place the blocks may have taken another year. Seven scenes of Sheshonk I and his son Iuput were completed at Karnak along with over ninety lines of hieroglyphs (not counting the 130+ captured city names) possibly taking another year. 4 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 7 year minimum, not accounting for losses of time due to accidents, weather, war, etc.. Since the stela recorded Re-Horachty, as Sheshonk's residence, calling his reliefs the Bubastite Portal is a misnomer. Sheshonk's delta residence moved from Pi-Rameses on the eastern delta to Pi-Ese (estate of Isis) in the central delta at Sebennytos (now Samannud),29 not Bubastis (near Zagazig) thirty miles southeast. At Karnak on Sheshonk's eastern pilaster is inscribed, “First occasion (of) repeating the jubilee . . .;”30 thus, Sheshonk I reached his 33rd regnal year. This completed and moderately decorated jubilee court and gate attest to the long life of Sheshonk I, and not a sudden death during construction.
Scenes at Karnak of Sheshonk I with his son Iuput
The great wall inscription begins with classical exultation of the king, and line 2 states “thou hast trodden down the natives of Nubia,”31 later followed by Amun's blessing on his building plans” (lines 12-17). Next to this great wall is the “Bubastite Gate” which features three masterfully engraved scenes of Sheshonk I and his son HPA Iuput accompanied by their illustrious titles. The court and gate were completed with seven total engraved scenes of Sheshonk I and Iuput “depicted on an equal scale”.32
Incongruities of Sheshonk I's Victory Relief at Karnak
In Sheshonk's “first [campaign of] victory” early in his reign,33 the right side image of Sheshonk I wearing the white crown and holding a mace is hardly visible, but upon close inspection, the Chicago Epigraphic Survey determined it was “modelled in gypsum on the stone”.34 On the left, Amun's shuti is engraved flat whereas his figure is in bas relief;35 hence I conjecture the shuti was enhanced with semi-precious stones and/or it displayed a Libyan version of the double crown which was later erased. Iuput's description in several scenes throughout the jubilee court reads, “First Prophet of Amun-Re, king of the gods, great general and leader Iuput . . .;”36 hence I propose general Iuput was between Amun and Sheshonk I at the center of the army facing front. This scene was planned to exhibit Iuput's and Sheshonk's victories over the Meshwesh37 of the west, the bedouin at Bitter Lakes in the eastern delta, the Nubians of the south, “. . . the Asiatic back-country, the Aegean islands . . .,”38 and “all inaccessible foreign lands, of all the lands of the Phoenicians . . .”39
Though the first nine names were traditional enemies of Egypt, they were actually conquered by Sheshonk I. The first row of names: Upper Egypt, Lower Egypt, Wawat of Upper Nubia, Libyans, S[hetiam] of the western oases, Mn[tywnwstt] Bedouin, Bow[men of feather], Seti (nome #1 often conquered by Lower Nubia), H3wnbwt (Haunebut, meaning "Behind the Islands," the Aegean)40, #10 copy of Amu (foreigners), G3[d(t?)] (possibly Gubla, the ancient name of Byblos), Megiddo, and Rbyt (Rehob-Beth).
Sheshonk I's victory relief at El-Hibeh only has one row beginning “The western oasis, the eastern desert,”41 which are on either side of Thebes (though the west oases extend to the Fayyum). Merenptah mentioned “Israel”, but Sheshonk I never named it. I conclude the rest of the cities on the Karnak victory relief were conquered by someone else who actually led a campaign against Israel.

The original group of bearded soldiers (only the second man is clean shaven) were standing with recurve bows in the furthest hand and a “vial of oil” (?) in the closest hand and the last man holding a feather of maat. Their hands are twice as small as the scene engraved on top of them in which two more sets of seven bearded men facing left and right are standing with the opposite arm raised in praise. Thus the first group of men have three hands each. The left headbands may be Canaanite mercenaries, and the right helmets may be Cretan mercenaries. In the center of these male groups, Iuput was originally facing front with both arms crossing his chest holding objects.42 In his right hand appears to be a miniature double curved bow held closely to his chest; in his left hand is a feather of maat. (There is also a feather of maat underneath the lowest sets of men's elbows.) His left elbow makes the first male appear to be female. Iuput's head is missing. These incongruities suggest this wall was usurped by someone after Sheshonk I; like his youngest son, Sheshonk IIa.
Sheshonk I's Victory Scene at Karnak was Usurped by Sheshonk IIa
The small woman beneath Amun is holding a long-handled spoon in her right hand, and a stick about the same length (the very top of which no longer remains) in her left hand. This long-handled spoon was used to scoop out the brains prior to mummification. The bottom of the “stick” appears to have tassels, so maybe it was a scroll. Below her stick/scroll is a white crown, which was likely Sheshonk I kneeling to this goddess of Thebes.43 Attached to the end of her spoon are two groups of three lines, depicting ropes, which lead to six rows of captives. 
Amun holds the feather of maat in his right hand and a plumb line in his left hand with the plumb bob at his toe. Amun's left hand may have held something above it which has since been marred. Amun's left hand also holds two groups of five lines, but only the top group is attached to five rows of captives. The other group of five lines does not continue beyond the first block.

Sheshonk I's Iron I Stela v. Sheshonk IIa's Iron II Destruction of Megiddo

My book, Pharaohs of the Bible (4004-960 B.C.) goes into detail of the names, locations, and strata of the cities listed on the victory relief; and then places the strategic cities into four charts which specify the timing of their various destruction levels accompanied by the likely conquerors. All cities conquered by Shishak are listed as Iron IIA, Iron IIB, or Iron IIA-B by their respective archaeologists; whereas Sheshonk I's stela fragment at Megiddo was discovered prior to excavating the Iron II strata. The following is an excerpt from my book with the particular strata listed.

#12 Megiddo ('place of crowds'): Tell el-Mutesellim (hill of the ruler)
P.L.O. Guy was the main excavator of Stratum VI at Megiddo in 1934. He uncovered pillared houses typical of the early Israelites.1 Guy wrote,
There had obviously been a disaster of some sort in VI, of which the fire was the culmination, and that disaster may have been either a battle or an earthquake. . . . Some skeletons were found crushed under walls in postitions of obvious agony, but a number of others had been buried . . . It looked as if survivors had come back after the catastrophe and had left where they were those bodies which had been hidden by fallen walls but had hastily buried those who were visible. . . . The disaster, whatever it was, had been pretty sudden, for most of the rooms contained very large quantities of pottery in situ . . .”2
Skeletons crushed under fallen walls from a sudden disaster sounds like an earthquake which 'culminated' in a fire. Neither was there evidence the site was quickly inhabited and rebuilt by a 'victor'; instead stratum Vb had walls of poor quality. The stela fragment of Sheshonk I was found in 1926 in a “dump adjacent to a trench excavated by the German engineer Gottlieb Schumacher”3 in 1905.
. . . dating of our [Guy's] Stratum IV . . . to Early Iron I, though not to the earliest, or Philistine part of it. Philistine suggestions were . . . at places where we penetrated to Stratum V. From somewhere in a minor trench of Schumacher's which penetrates barely below Stratum IV came the stela fragment . . .”4
Guy was confident that it had come from the earliest stratum uncovered in the trench, namely Stratum VA/IVB”5 which Guy dated to Iron I. Therefore, Sheshonk I placed his 20-inch thick stela at Megiddo during Iron I of the 11th century of Stratum V, and Sheshonk IIa destroyed the beautiful ashlar buildings of Stratum IVb.

Thus the question of why a pharaoh would place his stela of ownership in the midst of Megiddo's ashes is solved with two different pharaohs of the same name coming to the city at different times for different purposes. Sheshonk I sought tax revenues from the traveller's going through the poor city of Megiddo, and Sheshonk IIa sought to loot and to destroy the wealthy chariot city which Solomon had built and Jeroboam had reinforced.

1 Harrison, Timothy P., “The Battleground: Who Destroyed Megiddo? Was it David or Shishak?,” Biblical Archaeology Review, Nov/Dec 2003, Vol. 29, p. 60
2 Ibid.
3 Ibid., p. 62
4 Guy, P.L.O., “New Light from Armageddon: Second Preliminary Report 1927-1929,” OIC, p. 44
5 Harrison, Timothy P., “The Battleground . . .” based upon Guy's “New Light . . .” pp. 44-48

Sheshonk IIa's Burial Goods and Mummy
A forensic examination of Shoshenq II's body by Dr. Douglas Derry, the head of Cairo Museum's anatomy department, reveals that he was a man in his fifties when he died.”44 If Sheshonk IIa was born in 1022 BC, and died in 970 BC, that is 52 years. Dr. Derry wrote that Sheshonk IIa died of a massive septic infection in a head wound.45 I suggest this head wound was inflicted during his campaign in Israel, that he died shortly after his return with Jerusalem's treasures, and he was afforded a grand burial in a silver coffin with a gold mask. I suggest that before his death he ordered his campaign to be engraved next to his father's victory relief in Karnak; the list of cities was squeezed into the left side. Possibly the artisan reworked most of Iuput out of the relief before Sheshonk IIa died and the project came to a halt.
The Egyptian king referred to as Shishak is conventionally equated with Sheshonk I … chooses to ignore the valid criticism of James et al. (1992:127) that there are other alternatives, and that there are problems with the Sheshonk I candidacy ... James et al. James (1991:229-231) and Rohl (1995) plausibly question this assumption ... there is another Sheshonk (II) in close proximity who might also be a candidate.”46 The problem stems from acceptance of Thiele's dates (1983:80).47
I agree with Manning that a Sheshonk II is a better candidate for Shishak, and that Thiele's dates have caused problems. Since Heqakheperre Sheshonk IIa died from an infected head wound from battle and was honored with a gold face mask and silver coffin, he is the best candidate for Shishak. Found on Sheshonk IIa's mummy was a jeweled pectoral inscribed with “Sheshonk, Great Chief of the Ma” which belonged to Sheshonk I before he was king; leaving us a clue to his heritage.
At Sheshonk's temple to Amun at el-Hibeh, the pillar scene in the first pillared hall has the following inscription:
King offers floral collar and two pectorals to Horus.”48
This is followed by an inscription under Horus.
To you I have given all life, stability, and dominion appearance upon the throne of Horus, [who leads the living.]”49
Could Horus refer to a promise that Sheshonk IIa, the child of Sheshonk I's old age, would rule? Sheshonk I's pectoral on the mummy of Sheshonk IIa might be the most compelling artefact signifying that Sheshonk IIa added his conquered cities to the victory relief of Sheshonk I.

1For a free .pdf of my chronology, go to
2Genesis 47:27 in which pharaoh gave Goshen to Jacob's family, and Joshua 10:41; 11:16 where Joshua took it back.
3Judges 5:4-11b in which the “earth trembled” and the “mountains melted”.
4This queen has a city named after herself spelled Tahpanhes in Jer. 43:7-9; 46:14, Tahapanes in Jer. 2:16, and Tehaphnehes in Ezekiel 30:18. It is now Tel Dafneh 18 miles SE of Tanis near Lake Ballah.
5In about 1067 BC for king Saul (I Samuel 15:2-9) and in early 1055 BC for general David (I Samuel 27:8)
6Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, pp. 216-218
7Kitchen, K.A., The Third Intermediate Period in Egypt, 1973, p. 292
8James, Peter, class=, accessed 3/8/11. Shipitbaal (son of Elibaal)
9Josephus, Antiquities 8:144-460
12Barguet, Temple d'Amon-re a Karnak, 1962, pp.122-3; block D, a, line 6 (Muller, Egyptol, Researches, II, 147, fig. 52 top)
13 Kitchen, K.A., The Third Intermediate Period in Egypt, 1973, p. 300
14Ritner, Robert. K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, 2009, pp. 218-219
15Phoenicia included the cities of Byblos, Tyre, and Sidon. From Egyptian hieratic and Canaanite protosinaitic came the first true alphabet known as Phoenician from which the early Aramaic alphabets of Hebrew and Arabic were birthed.
16Ritner, Robert. K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, 2009, p. 204 lines 22d – 24a with Amu being translated 'Asiatics'
17I Samuel 14:47 and II Samuel 10 respectively
18Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, p. 201
19Aston, David A., “Takeloth II Revisited,” The Libyan Period in Egypt, Netherlands, 2009, p. 7, fn 60
20Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, p. 196
21Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, pp. 187-193
22Ibid., p. 192 footnote #14
23A BTU is a British Thermal Unit equivalent to the energy it takes to heat one pound of water.
24“Sandstone Quarrying and Processing: A Life-Cycle Inventory - A Report,” Prepared for The Natural Stone Council Prepared by University of Tennessee Center for Clean Products, August 2008
27“hand-cut” with power tools instead of a bulldozer
29Ritner, Robert. K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, 2009, p. 191 on the Gebel es-Silsila stela in his 21st regnal year; see also
30Ibid., p. 196
31Kitchen, K.A., The Third Intermediate Period in Egypt, 1973, p. 293, footnote #284
32Ritner, Robert. K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, 2009, p. 193
33 Ritner, Robert. K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, 2009, p. 206
34Kitchen, Kenneth A., The Third Intermediate Period in Egypt, England, 1973, p. 73, fn #357
35Digital Egypt photo at
36Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, pp. 196-200
37The Dakhla stela dated to pharaoh Sheshonk's 5th year described “a state of war and turmoil” in Libya (Meshwesh).
38Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, p. 205
39Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, p. 201
40Coppens, by Philip, "Egypt: origin of the Greek culture: For centuries, scholars have identified the Greek culture as the source of the western civilisation. But what if the Greek culture itself was a legacy – a colony – of the ancient Egyptians?" Frontier Magazine 5.3, May-June 1999
41Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, p. 222
42Digital Egypt photo at
43Digital Egypt photo at
44Wikipedia based upon Douglas E. Derry, “Note on the Remains of Shashanq,” Annales du Service des Antiquités de l’Égypte 39, 1939, pp. 549-551
45Douglas E. Derry, “Note on the Remains of Shashanq,” Annales du Service des Antiquités de l’Égypte 39, 1939, pp. 549–551
46Manning, Sturt, A Test of Time: The Volcano of Thera and the chronology and history of the Aegean and east Mediterranean in the mid second millennium B.C., Oxbow Books, 1999, p. 378
48Ritner, Robert K., The Libyan Anarchy, Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2009, p. 223

Monday, June 11, 2012

Synchronous time-lines of the Holy Bible and Egypt

Check out my time-line at and discover how the Ice Age, the Theran eruption, and floods and famines effected Egypt and the Hebrews.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Haman scarab found at Megiddo - Happy Purim!

If you search "Megiddo Guy OiC 9" you will find a .pdf of Guy's excavation at Megiddo, and on page 49 is an article with pictures on Haman's scaraboid found at the site. The scarab depicts a griffin wearing the double crown of Egypt standing over a locust. Griffins are prominent in Persian poetry and art.
'Ahasuerus' was a ruling title like 'pharaoh'. The king of Persia was Darius I Hystapses in the book of Esther. Cambyses II, before him, had conquered Egypt in 525 BC. Darius I Hystapses may have made Haman an overseer of Egypt and Canaan, with Megiddo as an administrative center for western lands.