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Departure of the Israelites, by David Roberts (1829) (Public Domain)

Exodus: Which Way Did Moses Choose And Why?

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The actuality of the Israelites’ exodus  from Egypt has probably generated the most discussion and argument among scholars of Biblical times. Various sources recount that the Israelites were settled in the land of Rameses, also called Goshen.

“And Joseph settleth his father and his brethren, and giveth to them a possession in the land of Egypt, in the best of the land, in the land of Ramesses, as Pharaoh commanded.” ( Genesis 47.11).

“And the great company escorted Jacob and his family to Egypt, and there Joseph gave to his relatives the best of the land, even Goshen.”  (The Talmud : Selections , Polano, 1876).

The Eastern Frontier (Image © Ted Loukes)

The Eastern Frontier (Image © Ted Loukes)

Point of Departure

Both sources, Genesis and the Talmud describe the land as the ‘best in the land’, not some slave camp. As a powerful empire in its day, Egypt had many potential enemies, mainly from the south and from the east, and it was important that an adequate defensive system was maintained. To the east these defensive fortifications were part of what was known as the ‘Wall of the Ruler’, a system of fortress, canals and walls interlinking the lake system that existed between Egypt and the Sinai, stretching from the Mediterranean coast south to present day Lake Timsah at Ismailia. It is generally accepted that the Israelites left from the Rameses area.

The Brick store-chambers of Pithom, the city built by Hebrew bondsmen from Travelers in the Middle East Archive (1904) (Public Domain)

The Brick store-chambers of Pithom, the city built by Hebrew bondsmen from Travelers in the Middle East Archive (1904) ( Public Domain )

Store-Cities or Fortresses?

Exodus explains that the pharaoh was concerned about the number of Hebrews living in Egypt - and they were set to building the store-cities of Pithom and Ra’amses. According to the Septuagint, the Greek word for ‘store-cities’ “πόλεις ὀχυραί” translates not as ‘store’ , but as strong or fortified cities’; indeed the Hebrew term used stems from the word for magazine’ or arsenal’. The Talmud would seem to support this, as it describes the two cities as fortresses: “The fortresses, Pithom and Ra’amses, are not strong enough for their purpose of protection, they should be rebuilt and with greater care.” The implication is that the Hebrews were put to work on building up or restoring the fortifications on the eastern border.

Pithom or “ Pr Atum , the house of Atum, has been identified as being in the area of the Wadi Tumilat, that ends in Lake Timsah

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Ted Loukes is an independent researcher in the field of ancient civilizations. His book Moses and Akhenaten: Brothers in Alms grew from a single page blog post to a two and a half year project that incorporated several field trips to Egypt herself. This passion led to the forming of GnT Tours, specializing in small private tours in Luxor focusing on the archaeology and Egyptology of the Tombs & Temples of Ancient Egypt.

Top Image: Departure of the Israelites, by David Roberts (1829) ( Public Domain )

By Ted Loukes

Comments

Judgealan. My understanding is that LSD is derived from Morning Glory seeds. Ergot does give very similar effects however.

tedloukes's picture

Thank you for your comments. I think you will find that the article doesn’t claim that Rameses the Great was the pharaoh of Exodus.

According to Biblical Archaeologist William G. Dever, there is no archaeological evidence of a mass migration to Canaan. The evidence shows that it was a slow migration. If this is true, there was no exodus.

As for the claim that the “Exodus” occurred during the Ramesside Dynasty can be refuted by the Merneptah Stele, widely known as the Israel Stele, which makes reference to the supposed utter destruction of Israel in a campaign prior to his 5th year in Canaan: "Israel has been wiped out...its seed is no more."

Merneptah was a son of Ramesis the Great and his successor. The “Exodus” could not have happened after his reign and must have occurred many years before for Israel to be important enough to have been included on the stele

An entirely MADE UP tale during the Babylonian captivity by a small cadre of scribe/priests-Rabbis created for the purposes of "ORIGINAL PEOPLES"status - a archaic legal designation by the Babylonian Authorities which when recognized allowed HOLY RITUALS FEAST DAYS AND RELIGIOUS RITES - meaning TIME OFF WORK as the Bandits of the Hills of Judea who preyed on Merchants caravans were SLAVES.
So using a combination of Archaic desert tales and a mix of historical events that DID HAPPEN in ancient Egypt....they created a ORIGIN story a HISTORY of a unique PEOPLE....and were granted recognition as a group of tribes bound together by their "God"....and in ancient times the HIGHEST ART was ENCRYPTION of words and letters into the mystic art of METAPHORIC POETRY.
In Eygpt yes there were disasters- African Bovine ANTHRAX is still known today- following a Bovine cattle Anthrax outbreak would be FLYS and following that FROGS - why were the BONDED WORKERS - not slaves able to survive??
Naturally occurring PENICILLIAN from ERGOT MOLD in the cheap rotting grain used to make BEER which was a watery alcoholic porridge the bonded workers were PAID IN....so by CHANCE because the Egyptians drank WINE not beer the bonded workers had an IMMUNITY to ANTHRAX ....but the ERGOT MOLD BEER had a side effect other than penicillin- SOMATIC DELUSION AND HALLUCINATIONS - they literally thought they were hearing the voice of GOD when in fact they were on a ACID TRIP - LSD is also derived from ERGOT MOLD.
Every other event is obviously from a metaphoric point of view as there are NO RECORDS of the GREAT PHAROAH and his ARMY being killed in the RED SEA or the REED SEA.. and an event of THAT magnitude would have been KNOWN across MANY nations yet it was NOT only in one singular source ....so its obviously MADE UP..
Burning hail?? Methyl ICE from an undersea volcanic eruption and earthquake ejected - would LOOK like ice yet BURN because its frozen Methyl Ice.
The 10 commandments -COMMON TRIBAL LAWS- yet it is the conveyance of the TABLETS that is important....a BOX - LOGE from archaic Germanic root of LOGOS- on top of the BOX/LOGE is CHERIBIUM-which MOST people think means baby Angel's--
WRONG - utterly WRONG....
The word is SCHEREBIUM which means binary CRAB CLAWS from archaic Germanic SCHERE CRAB claws- slang VAGINA -AKA THE CREATOR BEING .... the IMAGE is of 2 YIN YANG SYMBOLS considered the highest MYSTIC IMAGE of the people from the DISPORA of the BLACK SEA FLOOD 8000 BC ...
Male female HEAVEN EARTH BALANCE in the ASIAN pantheon when carried by ARYAN TRADERS to the black sea area along with METAL TECHNOLOGY HORSES WAGONS AND CATTLE around 8000BC before the black sea flood....
The Metal less EUROPEANS traded WOMEN to breed warriors etc and the Europeans also took the Mystic philosophy of the TAO DISK yin yang....but it was subverted to a FEMALE ONLY SECRET HIDDEN philosophy....
Which became the all powerful god of the HEBRARU the FEMALE CREATOR GOD who is JEALOUS of all other Gods.
As only a woman can be....
The Ark is carried between to long poles on a platform this archaic device is called a SENFTE a further metaphoric play on words as the SENF RUNE is the MASTER ENCRYPTION from which all words letters numbers stem....
Interestingly- the NAME DEUTSCHE -originates from the term TAO DISK and of course famously the german women put to death the only other group of women in a JEALOUS RAGE that ALSO used the TAO DISK - yin yang CARCER seidel magic symbol as their Female CREATOR God.

Judgealan

tedloukes's picture

Thank you for your comments. As there is no definitive evidence for where, or even if, the Israelites began the journey, I feel “generally accepted” is better than anything else. The whole point of the article is; if the Exodus happened, which is the is the most likely route taken, and why? It is not saying that it did happen at all. Thank you, once again.

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