Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Discussion about the Hebrew Bible, Septuagint, pseudepigrapha, Philo, Josephus, Talmud, Dead Sea Scrolls, archaeology, etc.
Maximos
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by Maximos »

Mental flatliner wrote:
Maximos wrote:"The exodus from Egypt is unknown to history save what is written in the Hebrew Bible. Outside of the most meager of circumstantial evidence we possess nothing to substantiate the text."
This is a false claim.

I have evidence for several dozen events before, during and after the Exodus demonstrating that it's unreasonable to dismiss the event.

The reason why people think it didn't happen is because they place the event in the 13th century in error, when the Bible places the event 300 years earlier. If you look in the right place, you'll find what you need.
Start your own thread as I have no patience for TROLLS, there are many different dates addressed and thoroughly debunked by the author throughout the book.

And feel free to take it up with Dr. Oblath and many others:
"...After a century of exhaustive investigation, all respectable archaeologists have given up hope of recovering any context that would make Abraham, Isaac or Jacob credible ‘historical figures.’... [A]rchaeological investigation of Moses and the Exodus has similarly been discarded as a fruitless pursuit. Indeed, the overwhelming archaeological evidence today of largely indigenous origins for early Israel leaves no room for an exodus from Egypt or a 40-year pilgrimage through the Sinai wilderness. A Moses-like figure may have existed somewhere in the southern Transjordan in the mid-late 13th century B.C., where many scholars think the biblical traditions concerning the god Yahweh arose. But archaeology can do nothing to confirm such a figure as a historical personage, much less prove that he was the founder of the later Israelite religion."

- Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver, page 75, quote from Dr. Dever

The "13th century B.C." claims are thoroughly debunked in the book!

"The exodus from Egypt is unknown to history save what is written in the Hebrew Bible. Outside of the most meager of circumstantial evidence we possess nothing to substantiate the text."

- Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver, page 75, quote from Dr. Oblath

"No direct evidence [of] the Israelite sojourn in Egypt and the Exodus can be extracted from archaeology."

- Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver, page 75, quote from Dr. Finkelstein

"...the early date of Pentateuchal sources according to the Documentary Hypothesis is entirely lacking in external corroboration, since archaeological evidence, including an analysis of written finds in Judea and at Elephantine, does not support the existence of any written Pentateuchal materials prior to the third century BCE."

- Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver, page 25, quote from Russell Gmirkin

- Evidence for Moses and the Exodus?
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pakeha
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by pakeha »

Mental flatliner wrote:
Maximos wrote:"The exodus from Egypt is unknown to history save what is written in the Hebrew Bible. Outside of the most meager of circumstantial evidence we possess nothing to substantiate the text."
This is a false claim.

I have evidence for several dozen events before, during and after the Exodus demonstrating that it's unreasonable to dismiss the event.

The reason why people think it didn't happen is because they place the event in the 13th century in error, when the Bible places the event 300 years earlier. If you look in the right place, you'll find what you need.
I was intrigued by your claims and set out on a Google hunt for evidence of a theory placing the Exodus in the 16th century BC and came up with a documentary made by James Cameron and Simcha Jacobovici.

This article gives a number of reasons for not being convinced by a possible 1600BC dating.

Oddly enough, wiki claims there's evidence of a first, rather than second millennium dating for the story, based on the usage of specific place-names, among other elements.

Why do you find a 1600 BC dating of the Exodus plausible?
jackmark
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by jackmark »

pakeha wrote:Oddly enough, wiki claims there's evidence of a first, rather than second millennium dating for the story, based on the usage of specific place-names, among other elements.

Why do you find a 1600 BC dating of the Exodus plausible?
All of this is thoroughly addressed and debunked in the book: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver
Mental flatliner
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by Mental flatliner »

jackmark wrote:
pakeha wrote:Oddly enough, wiki claims there's evidence of a first, rather than second millennium dating for the story, based on the usage of specific place-names, among other elements.

Why do you find a 1600 BC dating of the Exodus plausible?
All of this is thoroughly addressed and debunked in the book: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver
You've said that several times, but you never explain how it was done.

I think the reason you can't explain it is because you don't yet understand what you read. Most people, when they've mastered a set of facts, are able to relate it in their own words.

(I'm trying to give you the benefit of the doubt. I mean, it would be idiotic of you to think we're just going to take your word for it.)

Personally, I rejected your author as any kind of scholar when you quoted him saying this:
...After a century of exhaustive investigation, all respectable archaeologists have given up hope of recovering any context that would make Abraham, Isaac or Jacob credible ‘historical figures...
Scholars never make weak, prejudicial arguments like this, and even laymen know that in scholarship there's no such thing as consensus, especially where the topic is of interest to Jewish scholars, Catholic scholars, Evangelical scholars and non-alligned scholars. As a reader, you should have thrown your book in the trash when you read this.

I've read respectable scholars who said that, after 300 years of Biblical archaeology, when the Bible is allowed to speak for itself, there has been found no substantive contradiction between the Bible and the archaeological record.
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spin
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by spin »

Mental flatliner wrote:
jackmark wrote:
pakeha wrote:Oddly enough, wiki claims there's evidence of a first, rather than second millennium dating for the story, based on the usage of specific place-names, among other elements.

Why do you find a 1600 BC dating of the Exodus plausible?
All of this is thoroughly addressed and debunked in the book: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver
You've said that several times,
Where has jackmark said this several times before? or even once?

:popcorn:
Dysexlia lures • ⅔ of what we see is behind our eyes
Mental flatliner
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by Mental flatliner »

pakeha wrote: I was intrigued by your claims and set out on a Google hunt for evidence of a theory placing the Exodus in the 16th century BC and came up with a documentary made by James Cameron and Simcha Jacobovici.

This article gives a number of reasons for not being convinced by a possible 1600BC dating.

Oddly enough, wiki claims there's evidence of a first, rather than second millennium dating for the story, based on the usage of specific place-names, among other elements.

Why do you find a 1600 BC dating of the Exodus plausible?
You should have read the Old Testament (which was my source). The Old Testament is, in and of itself, a legitimate historical source, and you're going to need sources of adequate authority (primary) to show where the Old Testament is in error (and you're going to have to be specific).

In addition, there are too many events in the Old Testament that have been confirmed, both as happening and as happening in the period described, for your author to be taken seriously.

(I suppose that's why you're unwilling to post any actual arguments from your author. As is always the case, when people are claiming that something in the Bible has been "debunked", there is a peculiar lack of willingness to show how. Without accountability, your claim, and your author's claim, is empty and need not be taken seriously.)
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spin
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by spin »

That's right, jackmark didn't say anything here several times before. You were confused, Mental Flatliner, but you can't admit it.
Dysexlia lures • ⅔ of what we see is behind our eyes
nili
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by nili »

Maximos wrote:Here's a new book debunking the existence of Moses and the Exodus: ...
My initial reaction was: "Why?"

But tell me, precisely what is meant by debunking the Exodus?
Maximos wrote:"...there is hardly a biblical scholar in the world actively working on the [authorship] problem who would claim that the Five Books of Moses were written by Moses." - Richard Elliott Friedman
Therefore? Are you suggesting that this is somehow relevant to the OP?
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lpetrich
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by lpetrich »

Here is my pet theory about Moses.

The Exodus I think was a rather mangled memory of the Hyksos, the "rulers of foreign lands". They were Canaanites who had overrun northern Egypt around 1650 BCE and who were expelled around 1550 BCE.

The Ten Plagues of Egypt sort of fit the calamities caused by the Minoan eruption of Thera. But Egypt was too far away for that volcano to have much effect. But Crete was much closer, and I think that the Ten Plagues came from Cretan visitors' descriptions of the calamities that their homeland had suffered.

The Exodus seems like a dramatized version of the expulsion of the Hyksos. They were likely chased back to Canaan by Egyptian armies, and along the way, they likely ran into a big marsh that seemed like a sea of reeds. Was there such a marsh near Eilat? The Egyptian armies eventually quit and returned home, but the Hyksos continued onward into their ancestral home. "When we reached the Reed Sea, the Egyptians quit chasing us and we soon reached home" isn't as dramatic as "Moses split the Reed Sea, letting us pass, but when the Egyptians' armies reached the Reed Sea, he let the water return, drowning them."

Then Moses himself. The Egyptian leader Ahmose's name seems like "akh moshe", "Brother of Moses", in Hebrew, and some storytellers would have filled in the blanks by imagining who Moses was. "If that Pharaoh was the brother of Moses, then who was Moses?"


Using Lord Raglan's mythic-hero profile on Moses, he scores very high. Lord Raglan himself had scored him as 20, and I find a score of 15, though with a stricter scoring.
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lpetrich
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Re: Did Moses Exist? The Myth of the Israelite Lawgiver

Post by lpetrich »

Moses as a lawgiver? There are numerous legendary lawgivers and city founders from premodern societies. Here are some Greco-Roman ones:
  • Minos: Crete
  • Theseus: Athens
  • Lycurgus: Sparta
  • Cadmus: Thebes
  • Perseus: Mycenae
  • Romulus: Rome
  • Numa Pompilius: Rome
Some of them even claimed to have gotten their laws from gods: Minos from Zeus, Numa Pompilius from Egeria, etc. (Legendary lawgivers - Atheism)

Bertrand Russell, in his History of Western Philosophy criticized Niccolo Machiavelli for focusing on great lawgivers, and thus having premodern notions of how a community comes into existence. As he pointed out, the idea that a community grows rather than is created is mainly a modern idea. However, there are some notable modern lawgivers. The American revolutionaries and Constitution composers, the "Founding Fathers", have become almost legendary for some Americans. BR himself in that book attributed Nazism and Communism to recent lawgivers. Most recently, some cities in the Gulf States have gone from small fishing villages to big world-class cities under the leadership of their rulers, notably Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
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