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The life and times of

Joseph

of Avaris

Biblical Joseph - home found! 

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PROOF OF JOSEPH FOUND - THEN HIDDEN

Mark Hutzler, Eschatologist 

Does archeological evidence prove the existence of a Biblical Joseph?

 

There is always been a battle over the truth of the gospel. I suppose there always will be. But as researches and archeologists continue to investigate the ancient grounds of Egypt they continue to make discoveries that need to be explained away. 

When you try to squeeze the Exodus into a time frame where it does not fit - you will naturally not find any archeological evidence to support the biblical account. This is what has occurred over the years as the bible is not a book that many seek to prove. But now that archeologists have found Avaris, an ancient Egyptian city found in the land of Goshen, some explaining is necessary. 

The biblical account of the Exodus takes place 480 years prior to the construction of the Temple of Solomon. (1 Kings 6:1)

We know that: The Temple was plundered by the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar, during the brief reign of Jehoiachin c. 598 BC (2 Kings 24:13), Josiah's grandson. The Babylonians attacked Jerusalem again and burned the Temple in 586 BC, along with most of the city (2 Kings 25).

 

According to Jewish tradition, the Temple destruction day was on Tisha B'Av, meaning the 9th day of Av (Hebrew calendar). According to ancient historians, the Temple stood for 410 years. Therefore the construction was done 410 years before 3414AM (586BC).

 

Solomon began construction in his 4th year as King, and took 7 years to build the temple. (1 Kings 6:37) The start date of construction could have been in 3003-3004. Jeremiah 25:1, points out that in the fourth year of Jehoiakim, it was the first year of Nebuchadnezzar. That was the year 3395 Jeremiah 25:1-3, is a prophecy delivered 23 years from the thirteenth of Josiah. Again confirming the year 3395

 

Jeremiah 52:12-13, states that Nebuchadnezzar came back again and destroyed the temple in his 19th year.  The year 3414. Daniel 1:1, states that in the third year of Jehoiakim, Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem. He starves them out, and Jehoiakim is taken away the late in that year. This makes sense as Nebuchadnezzar would have then been the ruler over Jerusalem in 3395 as Jeremiah spoke of during the besiege, in verse 25:1.

Back to Egypt.

Misdating the Biblical Exodus is precisely what the majority of archeologists do when they date the Exodus. First, they say it didn’t happen. Then, they illogically date what didn’t happen to the 13th century BC – 1270 BC to be precise.

But using the Biblical date for the Exodus proposed by the Bible itself i.e., 480 years prior to the construction of the Temple of Solomon (1 Kings 6:1), then you get a date around 1,500 BC. Based on archeology and textual analysis, professors John Bimson and the late David Livingston proposed a similar date.

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Acts 13:17-20: “The God of this people Israel chose our fathers. He made the people great during the time when they were living as aliens in Egypt and with a stretched-out arm he led them out of that land.  For some forty years he took care of them in the desert, and after he had destroyed seven nations in the land of Caanan he gave their land to his people as an inheritance. All this took about 450 years. After that, he gave them judges, down to the prophet Samuel.”

Complete Jewish Bible.

NIV, ASV, AMP, DARBY, WYCLIFFE. ALMOST ALL TRANSLATIONS INDICATE THE 450 YEARS IS LOOKING BACK FROM THE PROMISED LAND TO ISSAC.

NOT AS A TIMEFRAME OF THE JUDGES. 

Galatians 3:16-17: 

"Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He said not And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to your seed, which is Christ. And this I say, [that] the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect."

 

The 430 years of Exodus 12:40 is explained by looking at the Greek translation of the Old Testament. It says 

"The children of Israel and their fathers dwelt in the land of Canaan and Eygpt four hundred and thirty years". They spent 215 years in Canaan. Then because of a famine the Israelites moved to Egypt and dwelt there 215 years and then came to Sinia (Horeb) and then spent 40 years in the wilderness." 

Around the year 1,500 BC, a Canaanite group that scholars call “Hyksos” and that ancient Egyptians called “Amo” left Egypt in a mass exodus. Scholars call this the “Hyksos Expulsion”. At around the same time, the Bible tells us (in the Hebrew original) that the “Amo Israel” i.e., the Israelites, followed Moses to the Promised Land.

 

The Full Bible Timeline chart pinpoints the life and times of Moses and the Exodus. The Exodus took place in the year 1522BC​ - again another confirmation of the biblical account.

The Hyksos are believed to have originated in the north of Palestine. They destroyed the Amorite ruled Byblos in the 18th century BC, and then entered Egypt bringing the middle kingdom to an end in the 17th century BC.

 

Now as it happens the Full Bible Timeline pinpoints Joseph's death just before this invasion. Joseph dies in 2309AM or the equivalent to 1691BC. 

As to a Hyksos "conquest", some archaeologists depict the Hyksos as an invading horde of Asiatics. Yet, others refer to a "creeping conquest", that is, a gradual infiltration of migrating nomads or semi-nomads who either slowly took over control of the country piecemeal or by a swift coup d'état put themselves at the head of the existing government. They destroyed Amorite 

Manetho's account, as recorded by Josephus, describes the appearance of the Hyksos in Egypt as an armed invasion by a horde of foreign barbarians who met little resistance, and who subdued the country by military force. He records that the Hyksos burnt their cities, destroyed temples, and led women and children into slavery.

When the Torah records that the original Israelites travelled to the Egyptian Delta because of a famine, it seems that there was a Canaanitish population i.e., the Hyksos, already there. In Genesis 41:44, Jacob’s son, Joseph, becomes Pharaoh-like i.e., second in command to the Egyptian Pharaoh. If the Talmudic estimate of the Israelite presence in Egypt is correct, Joseph’s rise to power took place around 1,770 BC. If Joseph was indeed a Pharaoh like figure, who ruled both Israelites and Hyksos, one would think that there would be some kind of archeological relic attesting to his reign. And there is.

Prof Manfred Bietak has been digging at Tell el-Dab’a in Egypt for over 40 years. He has identified it as “Avaris”, the ancient Hyksos capital. Avaris is smack dab in the middle of the area the Bible calls “Goshen” i.e., the area that the Israelites lived in prior to the Exodus.

 

The word “Avaris” means nothing in Egyptian. But, in the Torah, Joseph is repeatedly called a “Hebrew”; “Ivri” in the Hebrew language. He is also repeatedly and curiously called “Ha Ish”; “The Man”. In other words, the word “Avaris” may very well be related to Joseph, the “Ish Ivri”, or the “Hebrew Man” (Genesis 39:14). All this is lost in translation when Joseph is simply called a “Hebrew”. Put differently, the so-called Hyksos capital seems to be named after Joseph the “Ish Ivri” i.e., Avar-Ish.

Between 1986 and 1988, Prof. Bietak found the remains of a monumental statue that seems to have belonged to a non-Egyptian ruler of Avaris. Although only fragments remain, the archeologists estimate the original size of the seated figure to be 2 meters high and 1.5 meters in depth i.e., about one and a half times life size. Over the statue’s right shoulder you can still see his “throw stick” i.e., the symbol of his rule. On the back – remarkably, as with the Biblical Joseph – you can still see evidence that this ruler was wearing a striped garment, made up of at least three colors: black, red and white. He was found in a tomb. The tomb was empty. This may be as a result of looting, but one can’t help but recall that the Biblical narrative explicitly tells us that when the Israelites left on the Exodus, they took Joseph’s bones with them (Exodus 13:19). In other words, in order to fit with the Biblical narrative, any tomb of Joseph in Egypt would have to be empty.

They call the statue the “Asiatic” i.e., he is not Egyptian, rather he is a man who comes from the area of Canaan/Israel. They might as well call him the “Ish Ivri”. Not much is left of his face because after his rule, as with the Biblical Joseph, his people seem to have experienced a downfall. Put differently, someone in ancient times took a hammer to his face. But his hairdo is still intact. They call it a “mushroom” hairdo and it’s specifically related to non-Egyptians from the area of ancient Canaan/Israel. Interestingly, it’s quite the “do”, and the Talmud goes out of its way to tell us that Joseph was quite the fashionista (Genesis Rabbah, 87:3). In fact, the Rabbinic Midrash Tanhuma Vayyesheb 8 specifically talks about Joseph curling his hair.

The statue was found in a layer corresponding to the year 1,700 BC. In other words, if we take 1,500 BC as the date for the Exodus, and if the Israelite sojourn in Egypt was around 200 years, the statue of this ruler perfectly fits the story of the Biblical Joseph who ruled around 215 years prior to the Exodus.

By carefully following the timeline in the genealogies of scripture you discover the birth of Joseph to be in the year 2199AM (1801BC). That is, 2199 years from the fall of man and Adam expulsion from the garden. We also can calculate his rise to power in Egypt at the age of 30 in the year 2229 (1771BC) and Joseph reigns for 79 years until his death in the year 2309 (1691BC).

Joseph's life is given to us in great detail and is laid out for us to follow as a guide to key events in both ancient historical records and the biblical timeline. The two match perfectly. 

 

The birth of Joseph is given to us by careful study of his father Jacob's life. See the detailed report by Rev. Charles Zimmerman.