Bible Bending Pharaonic Egypt. Part Two A: Saul, David to ‘Shishak’

untitled

by

Damien F. Mackey

 

If what I have determined in PART ONE of this title is correct, then we are faced with the incredible situation that the conventional Egyptian history does not align properly with the Bible, in any one instance, for the lengthy period from Abraham to the Exodus. That, in some cases, it is more than a millennium out of kilter!

And unfortunately, as we are going to find in this PART TWO (and later in PART THREE), there is still no alignment between these two sets of history from the United Kingdom of Israel (Saul, David and Solomon) and on throughout the Divided Kingdom, until we come all the way down to the era of King Hezekiah of Judah and Pharaoh Tirhakah (2 Kings 19:9), Hezekiah’s known contemporary (in c. 700’s BC).

These same comments would likely apply also to Syro-Mesopotamian history, in which there is no proper convergence until about the time of the neo-Assyrian king, Tiglath-pileser [III], with whom Hezekiah’s father, King Ahaz of Judah, formed a shaky alliance (2 Kings 16:7).

 

(All dates are BC and approximate only. Conventional dates are now totally irrelevant).

 

 

Legend:          Blue indicates that about which I am extremely confident.

Orange is for possible to likely.

Green is for still highly tentative.

 

Introduction

 

Thankfully, the doubly complex situation with which I had had to grapple in PART ONE (http://www.academia.edu/10913875/Bible_Bending_Pharaonic_Egypt._Part_One_Abraha), of bringing into alignment Egypt’s Old and Middle kingdoms – now for Abraham, now for Joseph, and now for Moses – will not be an issue here, owing to the fact that the period under consideration constitutes just the one Egyptian kingdom: the so-called ‘New Kingdom’. Egypt’s famous New Kingdom (dynasties 18, 19 and 20) also affords us the advantage of being far better documented than its Old and Middle kingdom counterparts.

And thankfully, instead of there being a discrepancy between the Textbook and Revised histories, of, in some cases, over a millennium (e.g., as we found for the potentate, Narmer), the difference here will be fairly consistently of a more sedate (approx.) half a millennium.

Having said that, the need for a multi-dimensional archaeology, as discussed in PART ONE, will still be an issue for this article, adding that extra degree of complexity.

 

 

Textbook History

 

  • Egypt’s Eighteenth Dynasty (c. 1550-1295 BC)

 

 

This extraordinary dynasty is summed up, and tabulated, in conventional terms, as follows (http://discoveringegypt.com/ancient-egyptian-kings-queens/egyptian-dynasties-new-ki):

 

Eighteenth Dynasty 1550 – 1295 BC

Egypt was reborn with the advent of the New Kingdom. The Theban kings expelled the Hyksos and the Egyptian army pushed beyond its traditional borders into Palestine and Syria. The administration was reformed into a dynamic system of royal appointments with officials selected on merit and a period of unprecedented success in international affairs followed. A huge empire was created that brought material wealth and new ideas into Egypt.

 

A succession of extraordinarily able kings and queens laid the foundations of a strong Egypt and bequeathed a prosperous economy to the kings of the nineteenth dynasty. Ahmose expelled the Hyksos, Thutmose I’s conquered the Near East and Nubia; Queen Hatshepsut and Tuthmose III, who made Egypt into the first super power; the magnificent Amenhotep III, who began an artistic revolution; Akhenaton and Nefertiti, who began a religious revolution by adopting the concept of one god; and finally, Tutankhamen, who has become so famous in our modern age.

 

  • Ahmose 1550-1525
  • Amenhotep I 1525-1504
  • Thutmose I 1504-1492
  • Thutmose II 1492-1479
  • Hatshepsut 1479-1425 [more like 1479-1458]
  • Thutmose III 1473-1458 [more like 1479-1425]
  • Amenhotep II 1427-1400
  • Thutmose IV 1400-1390
  • Amenhotep III 1390-1352
  • Amenhotep IV(Akhenaten) 1352-1336
  • Smenkhkare 1338-1336
  • Tutankhamun 1336-1327
  • Ay 1327-1323
  • Horemheb 1323-1295Saul, David, Solomon, ‘Sheba’ and ‘Shishak’“Taking a huge step beyond Velikovsky, but building on Velikovsky’s new alignment of the Eighteenth dynasty with Israel’s United Monarchy, Dr. Metzler identified this 18th dynasty as the Israelite monarchy”.The Textbook arrangement presented above is hopelessly inaccurate, based as it is upon the artificial Sothic dating system – see my:
  • That was a lowering of Egyptian New Kingdom history on the timescale by 500 years!
  • Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky, in his pioneering work Ages in Chaos, I (1952), absolutely shattered this Sothic-based system of Egyptian chronology when he boldly re-aligned the start of Egypt’s New Kingdom with the rise of the United Monarchy in Israel, in c. 1050 BC.
  • https://www.academia.edu/3665220/The_Fall_of_the_Sothic_Theory_Egyptian
  • The Fall of the Sothic Theory: Egyptian Chronology Revisited
  •  
  • —————————————————————————————————————-
  • —————————————————————————————————————-
  •  
  • My Revised History:

Velikovsky’s effort was a vital beginning, enabling for a proper convergence of secular and biblical history. Its fruitfulness is becoming ever more apparent.

 

Saul and David

 

Dr. Ed (Ewald) Metzler, himself a Velikovskian, next turned on its ear – upside down and inside out – the conventional tendency to consider Israel as always the recipient of the generous cultural bounty of the great pagan nations. Taking a huge step beyond Velikovsky, but building on Velikovsky’s new alignment of the Eighteenth dynasty with Israel’s United Monarchy, Dr. Metzler identified this 18th dynasty as the Israelite monarchy. One can read all about this in Metzler’s chapter, “Conflict of Laws in the Israelite Dynasty of Egypt” (http://moziani.tripod.com/dynasty/ammm_2_1.htm).

According to Metzler’s re-worked 18th dynasty schema (I have substantially accepted this):

 

Ahmose = Ahimaaz

Amenhotep I = Saul (wife Ahinoam = Ahhotep)

Thutmose I = David

Thutmose II = Solomon,

 

{and as according to Velikovsky}

 

Hatshepsut = the biblical Queen of Sheba

Thutmose III = the biblical King Shishak of Egypt

 

A key connection made by Metzler pertained to the sacking of the Palestinian city of Gezer, biblically attributed both to “pharaoh” and to “David”. Previously I commented about this:

 

Who was the ‘pharaoh’ of I Kings 9:16 who had sacked Gezer as a dowry for his daughter to marry Solomon? Velikovsky had opted for Thutmose I, without his having attempted to make any link between this pharaoh and king David. Metzler likewise has identified this biblical “pharaoh” with Thutmose I, but with the far more interesting aspect to it that Thutmose I was David. …. [Metzler] “Since King David-Thutmosis I was also the father of Queen Hatshepsut-Sheba, King Solomon refers to her in his Song of Songs (4:10 et passim) as Achoti Kallah ‘my sister, my spouse!’. This explains, too, how it was possible that the city of Gezer, which King David had conquered, was given to King Solomon as dowry of ‘Pharaoh’s daughter’. When the city of Gezer was destroyed by David Achinoam was already his wife, but he was not yet King of Judah and Israel, because King Saul was still alive … (1 Samuel 27, 3-11). Hence it is technically correct that the city was conquered by the pharaoh (1 Kings 9, 16), as she is the pharaoh’s daughter who made him pharaoh by marriage.”

“When David defeated Gezer, he killed all its inhabitants leaving ‘neither man nor woman alive’ (1 Samuel 27, 8 and 9). Likewise, the pharaoh, whose daughter King Solomon married, is reported to have ‘gone up, and taken Gezer, and burnt it with fire, and slain the Canaanites that dwelt in the city’ (1.Kings 9, 16). Since it was rebuilt and resettled only by King Solomon (1 Kings 9, 15), King David-Thutmosis I must be the pharaoh, who ceded it to him as a wedding present. There is no room for a foreign invasion towards the end of King David’s reign, because ‘the Lord had given him rest round about from all his enemies’ (2 Samuel 7, 1). Moreover, it does not make sense to conquer a city just to give it away, as pointed out by Abraham Malamat”.

 

[End of quote]

 

 

I think that there is a very good chance that the Thutmoside pharaohs were Davidides.

However, various readers have expressed concern with the notion that King David might have been the same person as the seemingly typical (polytheistic) Egyptian pharaoh, Thutmose I.

 

What I am Most Confident About, Though, is the Contemporaneity of Egypt’s 18th Dynasty with the United Kingdom of Israel, and that, Consequently, Pharaoh Ahmose, the Inaugurator of the 18th Dynasty, can now Be confidently re-dated from c. 1550 BC to c. 1050 BC.

 

For more on these possible correlations, see my:

 

House of David

 

https://www.academia.edu/3501234/House_of_David

 

Whilst the length of reign of pharaoh Thutmose I is disputed, it was probably less than thirteen years (c. 1504–1492 BC, conventional dating). That would mean that, were he the same person as David, a man constantly at war, and restricted to setting up garrisons in conquered foreign places (cf. 2 Samuel 8:6, 14), he would not have had the abundant leisure time later afforded to his wise son Solomon to perform the sort of religious and cultural transformation of Egypt and other nations that Yahweh had intended for the Davidides.

 

Be That As It May, What Is Certain Is That Biblical (e.g., Genesis; Proverbs) And Davidic (Solomonic) Wisdom (e.g., Psalms; Love Poetry) Began To Permeate The Usually Heavily formulaïc Inscriptions of 18th Dynasty Egypt.  

 

For abundant evidence of this, see my:

 

Solomon and Sheba

 

http://www.academia.edu/3660164/Solomon_and_Sheba

 

Clearly, King David and Pharaoh Thutmose I Were Following The Same Coronation Procedure For The Successor.

 

This is fully apparent from what I wrote in “Solomon and Sheba”, without then having any consideration of a possible identification of David with Thutmose I:

 

….

Successor of the King

 

There is an early parallel between Solomon and Hatshepsut in the ways their fathers presented their children to the assemblies of their respective countries, to designate them as their successors.

 

(i) The Assembly is Summoned

 

“David assembled at Jerusalem all the officials of tribes, the officers of the divisions that served the king, the commanders of thousands … of hundreds, the stewards of the property …and all the seasoned warriors” (I Chronicles 2:81). Likewise Hatshepsut’s father, Thutmose I, “… caused that there be brought to him the dignitaries of the king, the nobles, the companions, the officers of the court, and the chief of the people” …. [Baikie, J., A History of Egypt, London, 1929, Vol. 11, p. 63].

 

(ii) The Future Ruler Presented

Next, King David presented Solomon to the assembly, saying ‘… of all my sons … the Lord … has chosen Solomon my son to sit upon the throne of the kingdom of the Lord, over Israel. He said to me, ‘It is Solomon your son …. I have chosen him to be My son, and I will be his Father’’ (vv. 5-6). So did Pharaoh present his daughter to the assembly ‘This my daughter … Hatshepsut …. I have appointed her; she is my successor, she it is assuredly who will sit on my wonderful seat [throne]. She shall command the people in every place of the palace; she it is who shall lead you …’ [Baikie, ibid.].

 

(iii) The Assembly Embraces the King’s Decision

 

In Israel ‘… all the assembly blessed the Lord … and bowed their heads, and worshipped the Lord, and did obeisance to the king …. And they ate and drank before the Lord on that day with great gladness’ (29:20, 22). Similarly, the Egyptian officials ‘kissed the earth at his feet, when the royal word fell among them …. They went forth, their mouths rejoiced, they published his proclamation to them’ [Baikie, ibid.].

Also, just as Solomon was presented as ‘son’ of God (cf. II Samuel 7:14), so in Egyptian inscriptions Hatshepsut was called ‘daughter of Amon-Ra’.

 

[End of quote]

 

Stratigraphy for Thutmose I

 

Velikovsky had (rightly in a Metzler-ian context) identified David’s era as the same as that of the 18th dynasty pharaoh, Thutmose I, as Dr. J. Bimson tells when providing an appropriate stratigraphy (“Can there be a Revised Chronology without a Revised Stratigraphy?”, SIS: Proceedings. Glasgow Conference, April, 1978. Emphasis added):

 

In Velikovsky’s chronology, this pharaoh is identified as Thutmose I [ref. Ages in Chaos, iii, “Two Suzerains”] … In the revised stratigraphy considered here, we would expect to find evidence for this destruction of Gezer at some point during LB [Late Bronze] I, and sure enough we do, including dramatic evidence of burning [ref. Dever et al., Gezer I (1970, pp.54-55 …)].

[End of quote]

 

Whilst the revised stratigraphy, as considered here, appears to conform with the biblical evidence (just as it had in the case of the Exodus and Conquest in PART ONE), the conventional archaeology, famously exemplified by Israel Finkelstein in the case of David and Solomon, ends up hopelessly ‘bankrupt’. Israel’s United Kingdom, whose beginnings we have quite comfortably located to LBI, is relegated by the conventional scholars to the impoverished Iron Age IIA phase. That is where we should look to find David and Solomon, we are told – presuming that they had ever even existed.

In the face of such biblical minimalisation, I have written:

 

Rescuing King Solomon from the Archaeologists

 

http://www.academia.edu/3579095/Rescuing_King_Solomon_from_the_Archaeologists

 

Now, National Geographic, in December 2010, gave the following example of the mind-set of the likes of Israel Finkelstein (article by Robert Draper, “Kings of Controversy: Was the Kingdom of David and Solomon a glorious empire—or just a little cow town? It depends on which archaeologist you ask”):

 

….

The once common practice of using the Bible as an archaeological guide has been widely contested as an unscientific case of circular reasoning—and with particular relish by Tel Aviv University’s contrarian-in-residence Israel Finkelstein, who has made a career out of merrily demolishing such assumptions. He and other proponents of “low chronology” say that the weight of archaeological evidence in and around Israel suggests that the dates posited by biblical scholars are a century off. The “Solomonic” buildings excavated by biblical archaeologists over the past several decades at Hazor, Gezer, and Megiddo were not constructed in David and Solomon’s time, he says, and so must have been built by kings of the ninth-century B.C.’s Omride dynasty, well after David and Solomon’s reign.

During David’s time, as Finkelstein casts it, Jerusalem was little more than a “hill-country village,” David himself a raggedy upstart akin to Pancho Villa, and his legion of followers more like “500 people with sticks in their hands shouting and cursing and spitting—not the stuff of great armies of chariots described in the text”.

“Of course we’re not looking at the palace of David!” Finkelstein roars at the very mention of Mazar’s discovery. “I mean, come on. I respect her efforts. I like her—very nice lady. But this interpretation is—how to say it?—a bit naive.”

Now it is Finkelstein’s theory that is under siege. On the heels of Mazar’s claim to have discovered King David’s palace, two other archaeologists have unveiled remarkable finds. Twenty miles southwest of Jerusalem in the Elah Valley—the very spot where the Bible says the young shepherd David slew Goliath—Hebrew University professor Yosef Garfinkel claims to have unearthed the first corner of a Judaean city dating to the exact time that David reigned.

 

From what I can gather Garfinkel’s find also, unfortunately, belongs to the Iron Age, I-IIA (see http://qeiyafa.huji.ac.il/), so it cannot have any archaeological relevance to David. Draper’s article continues:

 

Meanwhile, 30 miles south of the Dead Sea in Jordan, a University of California, San Diego professor named Thomas Levy has spent the past eight years excavating a vast copper-smelting operation at Khirbat en Nahas. Levy dates one of the biggest periods of copper production at the site to the tenth century B.C.—which, according to the biblical narrative, is when David’s antagonists the Edomites dwelled in this region. (However, scholars like Finkelstein maintain that Edom did not emerge until two centuries later.) The very existence of a large mining and smelting operation fully two centuries before Finkelstein’s camp maintains the Edomites emerged would imply complex economic activity at the exact time that David and Solomon reigned. “It’s possible that this belonged to David and Solomon,” Levy says of his discovery. “I mean, the scale of metal production here is that of an ancient state or kingdom.”

Levy and Garfinkel—both of whom have been awarded grants by the National Geographic Society—support their contentions with a host of scientific data, including pottery remnants and radiocarbon dating of olive and date pits found at the sites. If the evidence from their ongoing excavations holds up, yesteryear’s scholars who touted the Bible as a factually accurate account of the David and Solomon story may be vindicated.

As Eilat Mazar says with palpable satisfaction, “This is the end of Finkelstein’s school.”

 

[End of quote]

 

Solomon and ‘Sheba’

 

Whilst in the process of defending Velikovsky’s thesis that Queen Hatshepsut was the biblical “Queen of Sheba”, in my “Solomon and Sheba” article, it occurred to me that the quasi-royal figure, Senenmut, ‘the real power behind the throne’, was Solomon himself.

More recently I have attempted to add support to this identification. E.g.:

 

Does the Name ‘Senenmut’ Reflect the Hebrew ‘Solomon’?

 

http://www.academia.edu/6498222/Does_the_Name_Senenmut_Reflect_the_Hebrew_Solomon

 

as well as to the “Queen of Sheba” one:

 

Why Hatshepsut can be the ‘Queen of Sheba’

 

http://www.academia.edu/3689991/Why_Hatshepsut_can_be_the_Queen_of_Sheba

 

Whilst Senenmut (or Senmut) emerges from the pages of Egyptian history as a full-blooded character of immense knowledge and skill, power and experience – he being the indispensable confidant of the glorious woman-pharaoh, Hatshepsut – the same cannot exactly be said for her known husband, Thutmose II (Okhepernere), c. 1492-1479 BC, conventional dating. Whether, or not, Thutmose II is Solomon, this is at least the conclusion at which Metzler has arrived. Hatshepsut’s husband Thutmose II, son of Thutmose I (David), becomes Solomon himself. “Hatshepsut was therefore ‘Pharaoh’s daughter’, Solomon‘s wife (I Kings 9:24)” (op. cit.). From this scenario Metzler further deduced: “Since King David-Thutmosis I was also the father of Queen Hatshepsut-Sheba, King Solomon refers to her in his Song of Songs (4, 10 et passim) as Achoti Kallah ―my sister, my spouse!’”

At this stage, I find that it is Senenmut, rather than the fairly obscure Thutmose II, who the better exemplifies King Solomon in his later cosmopolitan and imperial phase.

 

Stratigraphy for Solomon (= Thutmose II?)

 

Dr. Bimson, following on from his location of Thutmose I’s conquest of the city of Gezer to LBI, then proceeded to suggest that (op. cit.): “… Solomon’s reign saw the transition from LB I to LB II, rather than from LB IA to LB IB [as Bimson had previously thought]”.

This Seems To Me To Be A Very Reasonable Conclusion!

 

Now at this point we arrive at that ‘multi-dimensional archaeological complication’ to which I alluded in my Introduction. Although this series focusses upon Egypt in its relationship to the Bible, it is necessary here to pause briefly to consider the Davidides in their relationship to Mesopotamia, since this will seriously affect the conventional archaeological arrangement. Whilst New Kingdom Egypt may currently be half a millennium out of alignment with biblical history, Mesopotamian history, for the corresponding era of David and Solomon, is

out by approximately 800 years!

As I have argued in various articles, when the supposedly C18th BC era of King Hammurabi of Babylon is re-aligned with that of kings David and Solomon, there emerges a whole galaxy of biblical characters. Thus I wrote, for example, in:

 

Bringing New Order to Mesopotamian History and Chronology

 

https://www.academia.edu/8042890/Bringing_New_Order_to_Mesopotamian_History

 

… following the lines of argument as pioneered by Dean Hickman, evidence may favour that certain famous kings of Mesopotamia of the c. C19th BC [and C18th BC] need to be radically re-dated and biblically identified. Among these are:

 

    1. Shamshi Adad I, who becomes Hadadezer, the foe of King David of Israel;
    2. Ila-kabkabu, who becomes Rekhob, father of Hadadezer.
    3. Zimri Lim of Mari, who becomes King Solomon’s Syrian foe Rezon;
    4. Iahdunlim, who I becomes Eliada, father of Rezon.
    5. Yarim Lim of coastal Yamkhad, who becomes Hiram, king of Tyre.
    6. Hammurabi King of Babylon, who I believe to have been King Solomon himself. ….

 

[End of quote]

 

Whether or not King Hammurabi really was Solomon himself, according to my:

 

Hammurabi the Great King of Babylon was King Solomon

 

https://www.academia.edu/3579091/Hammurabi_the_Great_King_of_Babylon_was_King

 

He Was Undoubtedly Solomon’s Close Contemporary.

But Hammurabi, whom chronologists have slid around in various eras, is currently dated to approximately 1792 BC to 1750 BC (known as the “middle chronology”), or, if one prefers, c. 1728 BC to 1686 BC (the “short chronology”).

This, by default, means that King Hammurabi must be located archaeologically to MBI (which we have found in PART ONE firmly pertains to the nomadic Israelites), or to MBII. But the correct stratigraphy for Solomon (and hence for the era of Hammurabi) is more like, as we read above, LBI-LBII.

Contrary to the conventional archaeological estimate, King Solomon was a great world figure in his day. And so I have concluded:

 

Israel Finkelstein has not archaeologically “destroyed Solomon”, as he thinks. He has completely missed Solomon.

 

https://www.academia.edu/3689852/Israel_Finkelstein_has_not_archaeologically_destroyed_

 

And so was the ‘Queen of Sheba’ greatly renowned. For further identifications of her, see:

 

The Rape of Tamar

 

https://www.academia.edu/3665245/The_Rape_of_Tamar

and

 

How the Queen of Sheba may parallel Abimelech (Genesis)

 

https://www.academia.edu/9477716/How_the_Queen_of_Sheba_may_parallel_Abimelech_Genesis_

 

 

‘Shishak’

 

One very firmly rooted pillar of conventional Egyptian chronology is actually a biblically-based one. I refer to the still-retained estimation of François Champollion, the celebrated decipherer of hieroglyphics, that the biblical pharaoh, “Shishak”, who attacked and looted Jerusalem and its Temple during the reign of Solomon’s son, Rehoboam (I Kings 14:25-26), was the Libyan I (22nd dynasty) pharaoh, Shoshenq I (c. 943-922 BC, conventional dating).

According to Dr. Velikovsky (op. cit.), on the other hand, “Shishak” was Thutmose III – an identification that I accept. And I have attempted to defend Velikovsky’s thesis here, though with significant modification:

 

Why Thutmose III can be ‘King Shishak of Egypt’

 

https://www.academia.edu/3689996/Why_Thutmose_III_can_be_King_Shishak_of_Egypt_

 

Now, whilst the name, “Shoshenq”, is admittedly not a bad fit for “Shishak”, see my:

 

Can the Name, ‘Shishak’, be reconciled to Thutmose III?

 

https://www.academia.edu/10749533/Can_the_Name_Shishak_be_reconciled_to_Thutmose_III

 

the equation (Shoshenq I = Shishak) has been, chronologically speaking, disastrous.

As even conventional scholars aver, Shoshenq I apparently never attacked Jerusalem. But:

 

Pharaoh Thutmose III Attacks Jerusalem

 

https://www.academia.edu/10654519/Pharaoh_Thutmose_III_Attacks_Jerusalem

 

Stratigraphy for Thutmose III (‘Shishak’)

 

Dr. Bimson now goes on to consider (op. cit.):

 

… scarabs of Thutmose III occur regularly from the start of LB II onwards, and perhaps no earlier …. Archaeologically, the location of the abundant Thutmose III scarabs has proven a complete nightmare for the conventional scholar, as Velikovsky has shown in various places, e.g.: “Scarabs — seals of the pharaohs” and impressions of these seals in clay are as a rule found in these countries in much more recent levels than expected by the established chronology. Especially startling is the fact that the scarabs of Thutmose III are regularly found in levels supposedly five to six centuries younger ….

 

[End of quote]

 

That fascinating evidence, attesting to the half a millennium discrepancy between the conventional history/archaeology and the far sounder biblically-based model, leads us nicely into the following chart:

 

Table 1:

 

Eighteenth Dynasty Egypt (Conventional)             Eighteenth Dynasty Egypt (Revised)

 

Early Thutmosides                                         =                      United Kingdom of Israel

(c. 1550-1458 BC)                                                                  (c. 1050-900 BC)

 

Late Bronze Age I                               (Iron Age IIA for David)                   Late Bronze Age I (Gezer)

Ahmose (c. 1550-1525 BC)                            =                      Ahimaaz (c. 1050 BC)

Amenhotep I (c. 1525-1504 BC)                    =                      Saul (c. 1050 BC)

Thutmose I (c. 1504-1492 BC)                       =                      David  (c. 1000 BC)

 

Saul and David

 

 

Late Bronze Age I                                                                       Late Bronze Age I-II       

Thutmose II (c. 1492-1479 BC)                     =                      Solomon (c. 950 BC)

(Senenmut)                                                      =                      (Solomon)

 

[Hammurabi, C18th BC: Middle Bronze Age I-II]

 

Hatshepsut: (c. 1479-1458 BC)                      =                      ‘Queen of Sheba’ (‘of South’)

 

Solomon and ‘Sheba’

 

Late Bronze Age I                                                                           Late Bronze Age II

Thutmose III (c. 1479-1425 BC)                    =                      “Shishak” king of Egypt

 

[Shoshenq I, c. 943-922 BC, Iron Age IIA]

 

‘Shishak’

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Bible Bending Pharaonic Egypt. Part Two B: Rehoboam to Jehoram

Nefertiti

by

Damien F. Mackey

 

 

In PART TWO A, I covered the period from the beginning of Israel’s United Kingdom (Saul, David and Solomon) down to the invasion of Judah by “Shishak king of Egypt”, which occurred just a few years into the Divided Kingdom phase, the 5th year of Solomon’s son, Rehoboam (I Kings 14:25).  

That biblical period, I showed, aligned precisely with the early Eighteenth Dynasty of Egypt: from Ahmose to Thutmose III (= “Shishak”). 

 

Now in this PART TWO B, I shall simply be picking up the history where I left off in A, with King Rehoboam of Judah, and shall continue on from there down to King Jehoram of Judah. This period dates from c. 930 – 840 BC (by standard estimate). The conventional dates for the corresponding (in a revised sense) Egyptian pharaohs would be c. 1450 – 1330 BC.

That reflects the usual necessary downward shift of about 500 years.     

Because this article will encounter the idiosyncratic El Amarna [EA] age of Egyptian history, I shall be dividing it into 1. pre-EA, and 2. EA. Two very different eras.

 

(All dates are BC and approximate only. Conventional dates are now totally irrelevant).

 

Legend:          Blue indicates that about which I am extremely confident.

Orange is for possible to likely.

Green is for still highly tentative.

Textbook History

  • Pre-EA: Egypt’s 18th Dynasty from Amenhotep II to III (c. 1450-1380 BC)

Amenhotep II, the 7th king of the 18th dynasty, son of Thutmose III, ruled Egypt from c.1450 to 1425 BCE. He continued the military exploits of his father, particularly in Syria, where he crushed an uprising and demanded oaths of loyalty from local rulers. His mummy was discovered in the Valley of the Kings. ….

Thutmose IV campaigned in Nubia and Retenu. He concluded a treaty with the Babylonians and entered into an alliance with the Mitanni by marrying Artatama’s daughter.

Amenhotep III ruled (c. 1417-1379 BCE) Egypt at the height of its power. His extensive diplomatic contacts with other Near Eastern states, especially Mitanni and Babylonia, are revealed in the Amarna tablets. Of the great temple he built near Thebes, only two statues, the so-called colossi of Memnon, remain. Amenhotep’s wife Tiye, a woman of non-royal birth, was prominently associated with him during his long and peaceful reign. ….

(http://www.reshafim.org.il/ad/egypt/history18-20.htm)

My Revised History:

Kings Rehoboam to Asa

 

Just prior to my writing this PART TWO B, I thought it necessary to sort out a few matters pertaining to this particular biblical era in order to prepare the ground for the present article. Consequently, I wrote:

From Rehoboam to Asa, Descendants of Solomon

 

https://www.academia.edu/11281808/From_Rehoboam_to_Asa_Descendants_of_Solomon

to which the reader may like to refer, since this section 1. will essentially be a summary of it.

“Zerah the Ethiopian [Cushite]”

 

One pressing issue for which I had hoped to gain some clarification was the identification of “Zerah the Ethiopian [Cushite]”, who invaded the kingdom of Asa of Judah with a massive army, only to be defeated by this mighty Judaean king (2 Chronicles 14:9-15).

“Zerah the Ethiopian” was, according to Dr. Velikovsky (Ages in Chaos, I, 1952), the strong-armed pharaoh Amenhotep II. And Dr. David Down considers such an identification possible:

https://answersingenesis.org/archaeology/ancient-egypt/the-mighty-archer/

[Amenhotep II] was eager to emulate his victorious father [Thutmose III/“Shishak”] in military conquests, and on his accession to the throne made several incursions into Palestine and Syria, and he was ruthless in his dealings with his enemies. He claimed that he had slain seven princes with his own hands and brought their bodies back to Egypt, triumphantly displaying them suspended, head down, from the prow of his boat. Back home, he fastened six of them to the city wall at Luxor.

This large head of Amenhotep II is in the British Museum.

From his second campaign, he boasted of the towns he had plundered, the huge amount of booty he had taken, and the 89,600 prisoners of war he had captured, but his invasion in his ninth year seemed to be a bit thin on results. It went no farther north than south and central Palestine, and he could boast of returning with only two horses, one chariot, and some bows and arrows. Velikovsky suggests that this was an admission of defeat, and that would be consistent with the biblical record by this revised chronology.

….

By the usually accepted chronology, this record cannot be supported. The word from which Ethiopian comes is Kush, meaning southern Egypt, or the Sudan. At this time there was no Kushite who could have raised an army of a million men, but the 18th Dynasty had their main center at Luxor in southern Egypt, and the chronicler might well have classed him as a Kushite. It could well have been Amenhotep II who beat a hasty retreat from Mareshah.

[End of quote]

In the past I have drifted in and out of this identification, which is not Velikovsky’s strongest, but chronological considerations have lately caused me to re-think it. For, if Thutmose III’s First Campaign, as “Shishak” against Rehoboam – pharaoh’s Year 22-23 coinciding with Rehoboam’s 5th – then the long-reigning (54 years) Thutmose III is still alive and kicking well into the reign of king Asa of Judah, whom “Zerah the Ethiopian” attacked.

For, as calculated in “From Rehoboam to Asa”, Year 35 of Thutmose III corresponds approximately to the beginning of king Abijah of Judah; whilst Year 38 of the pharaoh corresponds approximately to the beginning of king Asa of Judah.

Thutmose III was, I concluded, a more likely candidate for “Zerah” than Amenhotep II.

Moreover, given my view that Egypt’s Eighteenth Dynasty was essentially an Israelite one, I arrived at a new conclusion: that Amenhotep II was Rehoboam himself, the son of Solomon – hence not the son of Thutmose III. And, whilst this conclusion must be, at this stage, most tentative, I did find a personality connection: “Rehoboam is like Amenhotep II at least as to his character: his boastfulness; his (reputed) strength; and his cruelty. …”.

And I also mused upon the possibility of a historical coincidence of that famous assault by Thutmose III upon ‘Kadesh’ (= Jerusalem according to the revision):

“One of the first acts of Thutmose III’s sole rule was to launch a campaign against the Mitanni and the prince of Kadesh, who encouraged Egypt’s vassal states in Syria-Palestine to revolt (http://www.britishmuseum.org/explore/highlights/article_index/t/thutmose)”.

with this similarly-worded event involving Amenhotep II (revised as Rehoboam):

Amenhotep II set out on a campaign to an area in Syria near Kadesh, whose city-states were now caught up in the power struggle between Egypt and Mitanni ….

(http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/180468/ancient-Egypt/22314/Amenhotep-II)”.

Northern Kingdom

 

What complicates this period is the fact that, following the passing of King Solomon, it now becomes a Divided Kingdom, with Rehoboam ruling as king in Jerusalem, and Jeroboam I reigning in the north.

In “From Rehoboam to Asa”, I proposed some extra identifications for the powerful and talented Jeroboam, about whom we read in I Kings 11:40: “Solomon tried to kill Jeroboam, but Jeroboam fled to Egypt, to Shishak the king, and stayed there until Solomon’s death”. For his possible Egyptian identification – quite likely since he fled to Egypt – I considered the highly-talented Vizier to Thutmose III (“Shishak”), Rekhmire.

Far more tentatively, I suggested that he may also have been the famous Hiram the metalworker (I Kings 7:13), famous in Freemasonry as Hiram Abiff.

If Jeroboam were also Rekhmire, then Jeroboam’s ill-fated son, Nadab (I Kings 15:25-28), could be one of these of Rekhmire’s sons: Menkeperreseneb, Amenophis and Senusert (http://www.touregypt.net/featurestories/rekhmire.htm).

Whilst stratigraphically, in conventional terms, the biblical era that I have just covered would be the same as that attributed to King David, Iron Age IIA, in revised terms it would still be Late Bronze II (A-B).

 

 

Table 1:

 

  • Pre-EA: Egypt’s 18th Dynasty from Amenhotep II to III (c. 1450-1380 BC)

 

Pre-EA 18th Dynasty Egypt (Conventional)           Pre-EA 18th Dynasty Egypt (Revised)

 

Amenhotep II-III                                           =                      Divided Kingdom

(c. 1450-1380 BC)                                                                  (c. 930-870 BC)

(Iron Age IIA for Rehoboam-Asa)       

Late Bronze Age I-IIA                                                                                     Late Bronze Age IIA-IIB

Amenhotep II (c. 1450-1425 BC)                  =                      Rehoboam (c. 930 BC)

Thutmose IV (c. 1425-1417 BC)                    =                      Abijah (c. 913 BC)

Amenhotep III (c. 1417-1380 BC)                 =                      Asa      (c. 870 BC)

Rehoboam, Abijah and Asa

 

 

Textbook History

  • EA: Egypt’s 18th Dynasty from Akhnaton to Tutankhamun (c. 1380-1350 BC)

Akhenaten (Amenhotep IV) (c. 1379-1361), was invested as king not in the Amen temple at Karnak as custom dictated, but at Hermonthis, where his uncle Inen was High Priest of Re and immediately began building a roofless temple to the Aten, the disk of the rising sun. He soon forbade the worship of other gods, especially of the state god Amen of Thebes. In the 6th year he changed his name from Amenhotep (“Amen is satisfied”) to Akhenaten (“beneficial to Aten”) and left Thebes for a new capital at Akhetaten (El Amarna).

Living there with his queen Nefertiti, six daughters, and possibly several sons, he fostered new styles in art and literature. The confiscation of the wealth of the Amen temples wreaked havoc upon its priesthood. Akhenaten used these riches to strengthen the royal control over the army and his officialdom. His concentration on internal affairs brought about the loss of some of the Egyptian possessions in Canaan and Retenu (Syria) and of the Egyptian naval dominance, when Aziru defected to the Hittites with his fleet.

His religious reforms did not survive his reign and monotheism [2] in its pure form was forgotten in Egypt, even though it found a new expression in the trinity of Re, Ptah and Amen. The Aten temples were demolished, and Akhenaten came to be called “the Enemy” or the “criminal of Akhetaten.” The Amarna letters

The subsequent events are unclear, but it is possible that on the death of Akhenaten, Meritaten, who had become his wife as well as co-regent, married Smenkhkare. (Some think that Meritaten may have been Smenkhkare)

An attempt by Kiya to usurp the throne was suppressed and the remains of Akhenaten and Tiye were transferred to another site in the Valley of the Kings; Akhenaten was buried in Kiya’s coffin. In Tutankhamen’s reign, both mummies were moved to the tomb of Amenhotep III.

Tutankhamen (c. 1361-1352 BCE), the son in law of Akhenaten, succeeded his brother Smenkhkare when he was only nine years old. His vizier Ay restored the traditional polytheistic religion, abandoning the monotheistic cult of Aten of Akhenaten, its religious centre at el Amarna and returning to the capital Thebes. By reviving the cult of the state god Amen he strengthened the position of Amen’s priesthood. The pharaoh changed his name Tutankhaten, (living image of Aten), to Tutankhamen, (living image of Amen).

During his reign, the general Horemheb sought to ‘pacify’ Canaan and fought against the Hittites in northern Syria allied to the Assyrians. Tutankhamen’s restoration

Tutankhamen died at the age of 18, some claim that he was murdered, but there is no real evidence to support this. As there were apparently no legal heirs, a plea by the King’s Wife for a suitable prince consort seems to have reached the Hittite king Suppiliuma.

(http://www.reshafim.org.il/ad/egypt/history18-20.htm)

My Revised History:

Kings Ahab to Jehoram

 

Thanks to the beginnings made by Dr. Velikovsky (op. cit., see also Oedipus and Ikhnaton), the El Amarna [EA] period, centring on pharaoh Akhnaton (Amenhotep IV) – {but also including his predecessor, Amenhotep III, whom I discussed in “From Rehoboam to Asa”} –  has now been properly adjusted downwards from its conventional placement in the C14th BC to the C9th BC Divided Kingdom of Israel.

Whilst Velikovsky may not have been right in every case (see, for instance, his proposed EA identification for the pious King Jehoshaphat of Judah in quote below), his connecting together of consecutive EA rulers of Amurru with two biblical kings of Syria can now be considered, I believe, to be a veritable foundation for a revised history.

I previously wrote on this [colour emphasis added]:

A real pillar of Velikovsky’s revision was his identification of the Syrian biblical set of Ben-Hadad I and Hazael with, respectively, EA’s Abdi-ashirta and Aziru. This was not only my opinion. It was also the view of the Glasgow people, with Peter James saying that: “With [these] two identifications [Velikovsky] seems to be on the firmest ground, in that we have a succession of two rulers, both of who are characterised in the letters and the Scriptures as powerful rulers [etc]”. And John Bimson agreeing and adding to that package a succeeding Ben-Hadad and his EA alter ego. In those days [c. 1978], the revision itself was, to use James’s words “on the firmest ground”. James had refined Velikovsky’s Abdi-hiba [as king Jehoshaphat, preferring him] as the idolatrous king Jehoram of Judah. And Velikovsky’s other pillars, of Sheba and Shishak, stood firm (though subsequent study would show that these pillars needed some bolstering). Velikovsky had biblico-historical alignments right through from Ahmose to El Amarna, with the latter being particularly dense (in the good sense of the term).

[End of quote]

Indeed, thanks to a modified Velikovskianism today, the whole thing has become a “dense” series of pillars all in happy alignment.

Velikovsky had discovered other striking correspondences as well between the supposed C14th BC history and the C9th BC biblical history, none more stunning, perhaps, than the “son of Zuchru” [EA 334, 335] and the “son of Zichri” (2 Chronicles 17:16). Indeed, Velikovsky thought that the EA letters actually listed three of the military captains of king Jehoshaphat of Judah as given in vv. 14-18): namely, Addudani/Addadani=Adna [and Ada-danu mentioned by Shalmaneser III]; son of Zuchru; and Iahzibada = Iehozabad.

The fact that revisionists have since been able to establish such a host of convincing parallels between EA and the Divided Kingdom of Israel is sure proof, I think, of the correctness of Velikovsky’s radical re-setting of the conventional C14th BC era, even though Velikovsky’s actual theses therein have often needed to be modified, or, in some cases, thrown out.

I myself have had a field day demonstrating the fruitfulness of this revision, e.g. newly

Identifying El-Amarna’s Mesopotamians

 

https://www.academia.edu/3501241/Identifying_El-Amarnas_Mesopotamians

there even adding a further extension to Velikovsky’s Ben-Hadad as EA’s Abdi-ashirta:

Ben-Hadad I as El Amarna’s Abdi-ashirta = Tushratta

 

https://www.academia.edu/8713376/Ben-Hadad_I_as_El_Amarna_s_Abdi-ashirta_Tushratta

Very popular has been my identification of the internationally famous Queen Nefertiti with the biblically notorious Queen Jezebel:

The Shattering Fall of Queen Nefertiti

https://www.academia.edu/3689948/The_Shattering_Fall_of_Queen_Nefertiti

An enormous contribution has been – as mentioned above – James’s important modification of EA’s Abdi-Hiba. I have discussed this in:

King Abdi-Hiba of Jerusalem Locked in as a ‘Pillar’ of Revised History

https://www.academia.edu/7772239/King_Abdi-hiba_of_Jerusalem_Locked_in_as_a_Pillar_of_Revised_History

Whilst to this I have added EA’s Lab’ayu as, potentially, king Ahab of Israel:

Is El Amarna’s Lab’ayu Biblically Identifiable?

https://www.academia.edu/7781252/Is_El_Amarna_s_Lab_ayu_Biblically_Identifiable

Now, getting down to that important matter of possible pharaonic identifications of biblically characters, the very theme of this four-part “Bible Bending of Pharaonic Egypt” series, I have tentatively identified Akhnaton, husband of Nefertiti (= my Jezebel), as king Ahab, husband of Jezebel (= my Nefertiti).

This has led, in turn, to a consideration of the famous King Tut (Tutankhamun), even, as a C9th BC biblical figure:  

 

Identifying Pharaoh Smenkhkare and Tutankhamun

https://www.academia.edu/3689978/Identifying_Pharaoh_Smenkhkare_and_Tutankhamun

Table 2:

 

  • EA: Egypt’s 18th Dynasty from Amenhotep III/IV to King Tut (c. 1380-1350 BC)

 

Pre-EA 18th Dynasty Egypt (Conventional)           Pre-EA 18th Dynasty Egypt (Revised)

 

Amenhotep III-Tutankhamun                      =                      Divided Kingd. (Rehoboam-Asa)

(c. 1380-1350 BC)                                                                  (c. 930-870 BC)

 

(Iron Age IIA for Rehoboam-Asa)       

Late Bronze Age I-IIA                                                                                     Late Bronze Age IIA-IIB

Amenhotep III (c. 1417-1380 BC)                 =                      Asa (c. 870 BC)/{Jehoshaphat}

Akhnaton (c. 1417-1380 BC)                         =                      Ahab (c. 860 BC)

Nefertiti                                                          =                      Jezebel

Tutankhamun                                                  =                      Jehoram of Israel

Abdi-Hiba                                                       =                      {Jehoram of Judah}

Ahab of Israel and Jehoram of Judah

 

 

 

Conclusion

What has emerged from my “Bible Bending” series, and also from my previous article, “From Rehoboam to Asa”, is the most surprising situation that all of the monarchs of the entire Eighteenth Dynasty of Egypt, one of the most illustrious, have biblical identities.