However, Hoffmeier is not justified in suggesting that the absence of pharaoh’s name is motivated by a desire to exact revenge on pharaoh, since Exod 7:5 clearly states that Yahweh’s “message” was directed not toward pharaoh, but toward the Egyptian people.
1300–1100 BC), the singular term “pharaoh” was widely used, continuing to be popular until the late period.Accordingly, questioning the Bible’s historicity is nothing new to Biblical studies, as evidenced by Ladd’s remark, “It is the author’s hope that the reader may be helped to understand that the authority of the Word of God is not dependent upon infallible certainty in all matters of history and criticism.” A prime example is seen in the words of Finkelstein, who speaks of “the rise of the true national state in Judah [in the eighth century BC]. Such a position is unacceptable, and it must be opposed rigorously.The present work examines the trustworthiness of Biblical history by using the Hebrew exodus from Egypt (hereinafter, simply “exodus”) as a test case.Renowned Egyptologist Donald Redford concludes, “The almost insurmountable difficulties in interpreting the exodus-narrative as history have led some to dub it ‘mythology rather than . The eminent Egyptologist and Biblical scholar Kenneth Kitchen is foremost among them: “Thus, if all factors are given their due weight, a 13th-century exodus remains—at present—the least objectionable dating, on a combination of all the data (Biblical and otherwise) when those data are rightly evaluated and understood in their context.” Young also opposes this trend: “A date for the exodus in the mid-fifteenth century BC has been much maligned because of favorite theories that identified various pharaohs of a later date with the pharaohs of the oppression and exodus. Does Amenhotep II qualify as the pharaoh who lived through the tenth plague because he was not his father’s eldest son?Could the eldest son of Amenhotep II have died during the tenth plague, which must be true of the exodus-pharaoh’s son?’ to satisfy the curiosity of modern historians; rather, it was seeking to clarify for Israel who was the God of the exodus.” To support this idea, Hoffmeier appeals to Exod 5:1, which he uses to suggest that pharaoh not only rejects Moses’ petition to allow the Hebrews to worship Yahweh in the desert, but rebuffs Yahweh by denying knowledge of him, setting the stage for a subsequent series of plagues in which Yahweh manifests his power both to pharaoh and to Israel.Hoffmeier is certainly correct that Yahweh intended to demonstrate to the Israelites that he is the Lord their God (Exod 6:7), and to show the Egyptians that he is the Lord (Exod 7:5).For example, Shishak is named in the OT seven times, though never is he referred to merely as “pharaoh.”The only exception to this rule—apart from the 21 references in the prophetic books of Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, where the Egyptian monarch is referred to only as “pharaoh”—is when the Hebrew authors retrospectively write about the exodus-pharaoh, always leaving him unnamed.The absence of pharaoh’s praenomen in the biblical history of the second millennium BC is often used either to support the assertion of the legendary nature of the exodus narrative, or to demonstrate that the Hebrew writers were not truly interested in history.The need for evaluating the former premise is that many Egyptologists are leading the charge to deny the veracity of the exodus, attempting to persuade Biblical scholars and the Christian populace at large that the exodus never actually occurred... That national state produced a historical saga so powerful that it led Biblical historians and archaeologists alike to recreate its mythical past—from stones and potsherds.”Such attacks on the inerrancy of the Bible’s historicity necessitate a reasoned defense of its historical accuracy.Continue reading Few disciplines related to Biblical inerrancy are scrutinized more intensely than historicity. As Lindsell writes, “When inerrancy is lost, it is palpably easy to drift into a mood in which the historicity of Scripture along with inerrancy is lost.” The danger of compromising the inerrancy of Biblical historicity became vivid to the present writer when he learned that a transfer student who entered the seminary where he teaches was taught in another theological institution that Biblical inerrancy does not even extend into the realm of history.