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Jameson Price
Jameson Price

Pharaoh's Army

On 24 October 2014, the web site World News Daily Report (WNDR) published an article reporting that chariot wheels and the bones of horses and men had been discovered at the bottom of the Red Sea, thereby supposedly proving archaeological proof of the Biblical narrative about the escape of the Israelites from the Egyptians. According to the Book of Exodus, God parted the Red Sea long enough for the Moses-led Israelites to walk across it on dry ground, but closed the waters up again upon the pursuing Egyptian army and drowned them all:

Pharaoh's Army

Egypt's Antiquities Ministry announced this morning that a team of underwater archaeologists had discovered that remains of a large Egyptian army from the 14th century BC, at the bottom of the Gulf of Suez, 1.5 kilometers offshore from the modern city of Ras Gharib. The team was searching for the remains of ancient ships and artefacts related to Stone Age and Bronze Age trade in the Red Sea area, when they stumbled upon a gigantic mass of human bones darkened by age.

To determine when the Israelites left Egypt is difficult. Two views dominate scholarly debate for the exodus date. The first view places the exodus in 1446 B.C. Those who accept the 15th century B.C. date for the exodus rely on 1 Kings 6:1 as the foundation for this early date. According to this text, Solomon began building the temple in the fourth year of his reign, exactly 480 years after the people of Israel left Egypt. Since this early view dates the construction of the temple in 966 B.C., the exodus occurred in the year 1446 B.C. The Pharaoh of this period was Thutmosis III (1490-1435 B.C.). He was an able king who led several successful military campaigns in Canaan and Syria. Thutmosis III was able to use the power of his army to build a large empire in an area that extended as far as the Euphrates River.

Those who accept a late date for the exodus rely on the information provided in Exodus 1:11. This text declares that the people of Israel built the store cities of Pithom and Rameses for Pharaoh. Since the rebuilding of these cities is credit to Ramses II, whose reign began in 1290 B.C., the exodus then is placed in the 13th century. Ramses II is known as a builder of monuments. However, he came from a family of generals and conquerors. His many wars in Syria and Palestine give evidence of his prowess as a warrior. His most famous battle was against Muwatallis, king of the Hittites, near Kadesh on the Orontes, in which Rameses fought against an army of 30,000 soldiers.

This chapter makes mention of the reign of Zedekiah, and what happened in it; of his message to Jeremiah, to pray for the kingdom; of the king of Babylonian's raising the siege of Jerusalem, on hearing the king of Egypt was coming to its relief; of the assurance the prophet gave that the Chaldean army would return again, and destroy the city; of the prophet's attempt to depart the city, his imprisonment, conversation with Zedekiah, and his clemency to him. A short account is given of Zedekiah, and of the disobedience of him and his people to the word of the Lord, Jer 37:1,2; of the message sent by him to the prophet to pray for them, Jer 37:3; the time, when Jeremiah was at liberty, and the siege of Jerusalem was raised, Jer 37:4,5; the prophet's answer to them from the Lord, assuring them the Chaldeans would return and burn the city, Jer 37:6-10; the prophet attempting to go out of the city is stopped, and charged as a deserter to the Chaldeans; is had before the princes, and beat and imprisoned, Jer 37:11-15; but the king sending for him out of prison, and having some private discourse with him, upon the prophet's expostulation and intercession, his confinement was mitigated, and bread allowed him, Jer 37:16-21.

Escape across the Red Sea As the Israelites had left, Pharaoh changed his mind. He called his army and set off to pursue the Israelites on chariots. The Israelites in great fear, cried to Moses 'it would have been better for us to stay than to die in the wilderness'. But Moses told them that God would help them. God ordered Moses to stretch out his staff over the Red Sea, and the sea parted. This allowed the Israelites to escape across the sea, and away from Egypt unharmed. Meanwhile, the Pharaoh and his army followed them by charging into the sea. But Moses waved his staff, and the sea returned to its normal height, swallowing up the entire army of Pharaoh.

Their situation has been compared to the children of Israel looking out at the Red Sea with Pharaoh's army closing in by land. Winston Churchill warned his nation to expect to save only 20,000 to 30,000 troops. And yet over 330,000 were evacuated. All kinds of available British craft, some manned by civilians, were involved. 041b061a72


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