THE BIBLICAL CALENDAR OF HISTORY
Written by: Camping, Harold Posted on: 05/06/2003
Category: Bible Studies
THE BIBLICAL CALENDAR
by Harold Camping
A Chronological Record of Events
According to the Holy Bible
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
<1> The Clue Phrase "Called His Name'
<2> An Ancient Calendar
<3> Calendar Confirmation from Egypt
<4> Aaron's was the Fourth Generation
<5> The First Civilization
<6> The Confusion of Tongues
<7> Egypt Becomes a Great Civilzation
<8> Writing and the Tower of Babel
<10> A Calendar of Events in Biblical History
The Chronological Sequence During the Egyptian Sojourn
Historical Timetable of Pharaohs and Dynasties
Chronology of the Judges
Note on Oppression by Heathen Power
Chronological Table of the Kings of the Divided Kingdom
. Chapters 5 and 11 of the book of Genesis have long been a seemingly
insurmountable obstacle to students of the Bible. Inasmuch as they
begin with Adam and end with Abraham, they have their roots in creation
and their outreach into the era of the great civilizations of Babylon and
Egypt, which flourished during Abraham's day. They therefore tantalize the
scholar who is trying to reconstruct past history. Unfortunately, because a
solution to an understanding of these chapters has not been forthcoming, the
events embraced within their scope -- creation, the fall of man, the
Noachian flood -- are likewise often looked upon as accounts impervious to
Bishop Ussher's attempt to understand these chronological notices has
only worsened matters. His conclusions that Adam's date was 4004 B.C.,
the flood date was 2349 B.C. and that the Israelites spent 215 years in
Egypt, agree neither with the Biblical nor the secular evidence.
. But these chapters of Genesis are a part of the Word of God, and
therefore they must be true and dependable. The question is, can they be
rightly understood? I would be so presumptuous as to suggest a solution to
these chronologies. This solution will be compared with some of the
pertinent archaeological evidence.
The Clue Phrase "Called His Name"
. In Genesis 4 and 5 we read of the birth of Enosh to Seth. Why did God
use different language in describing this event in Genesis 4 than in Genesis
5? In Genesis 4 "Seth called his name Enosh" (Gen. 4:26). But in Chapter 5
the Bible says," Seth begat Enosh" (Gen.5:6). Why did God use the phrase
"called his name" (ASV) in connection with Enosh's birth in Genesis 4
when He did not in Genesis 5? It is obvious that the phrase "Seth begat
Enosh, " or "Methuselah begat Lamech," did not insure that Enosh was the
immediate son of Seth or Lamech or Methuselah. Many instances can be found
where a father-son relationship appears to be indicated and yet other
Scriptural evidence points to more distant ancestry. Matthew 1:1,, where
Jesus is referred to as the son David, and David, the son Abraham, is
. A more careful examination of the Scriptures reveals why the phrase
"called his name" which is the Hebrew qara', was used. In every place where
this phrase is employed, there can be no doubt of the existing
relationship: invariably it is indicative of parent and child. Thus
the Bible says, for example, "Abraham called the name of his
son...Isaac" (Gen. 21:3), "...so they called his name Esau" (Gen. 25:25),
"a virgin shall conceive and shall call his name Immanuel" (Isa. 7:14). In
every instance where this "clue" phrase appears one may be certain that an
immediate son is being described and not a more remote descendant.
. God's use of this "clue" phrase thus assures one that Seth was the
immediate son of Adam (Gen. 4:24), Enosh of Seth (Gen. 4:26), and Noah of his
father, Lamech (Gen. 5:29).
. But what about the rest of the names appearing in these
genealogies under discussion? Two are decipherable. Other Biblical
evidence shows clearly that Shem was the immediate son of Noah, even though
the phrase "called his name" is not used.(1) The Bible shows, too, by other
information that when Terah was 130 he became the father of Abram.(2) But in
the case of all of the other names listed in these chapters there is no
Biblical evidence of any kind that points to an immediate father-son
relationship. In fact, there is internal evidence within these accounts that
points to other than immediate father-son relationships.(3)
An Ancient Calendar
. In further reflection upon this situation, two Biblical notices
should be examined. The first is that of Genesis 7 and 8, where the dates of
the flood events are referenced to the age of Noah. Thus Gen. 8:13 records,
"in the six hundred and first year, in the first month, the first day of the
month, the waters....," etc. Gen. 7:6 indicates to us that the six hundred
years was the age of Noah when the flood came. Could the calendars of
ancient peoples have been tied to the life spans of certain individuals?
. The second notice is that of the New Testament where Christ declared
"this generation will not pass away until all these things take place"
(Matt. 24:34). In this reference Christ is speaking of events that would
take place just before His return. He is therefore insisting "this
generation" would continue at least for almost two thousand years, for this
much time has now elapsed, and all of the events of which he was
prophesying in Matthew 24 have not yet happened. As a matter of fact, this
is the generation of Jesus Christ. This is 1981 A.D. -- the year of our
Lord. The events of today are dated exactly as they were in Noah's day, by
reference to the birth day of a person.
. Since this method of dating events was practiced in Noah's day, was
suggested by Jesus Himself, and is actually the pratice use today, could
not this have been the method described in Genesis 5 and 11? Isn't it
possible that these accounts are a calendar giving the name of the patriarch
whose life span was the reference point at his period or generation in
history? This would make abundant sense, for this would provide for
continuity and clarity in historical reckoning.
Calendar Confirmation from Egypt
. God gives additional evidence to support this reasoning. In Exodus 6
God gives genealogical information concerning some of the descendants of
Jacob. The information given does not appear very meaningful to our present
day and age. But hidden amongst these verses are three numbers. The first
is found in verse 16 where it is stated that Levi's three sons were Gershon,
Kohath and Merari, and the years of Levi's life were 137. The second is in
the next verse, where it says Kohath's four sons were Amram, Ighar, Hebron
and Uzziel, and the years of Kohath's life were 133. The third is in verse
20, where it says Amram was married to Jochebed ande she bore him Moses and
Aaron, and the years of Amram's life were 137. At first reading, it appears
that Levi was the great grandfather, Kohath the grandfather, Amram the
father, and Moses and Aaron the sons. But is this so? There is no other
Biblical evidence that indicates this is the case, and there is no use
anywhere in the Bible of the phrase "called his name" in reference to these
men which would point to a immediate father-son relationship. But why would
God give the life spans of only three individuals amongst so many?
. To solve this puzzle, let us assume God is giving us the calendar
for the Israelitish sojourn in Egypt. One might recall that Jacob came to
Egypt with his sons including Levi, and that the Israelites went out of
Egypt under the leadership of Moses and Aaron. Both Levi and Aaron are
mentioned in Exodus 6 and the age of Aaron at the time of Israel's departure
from Egypt is given as 83 (Exodus 7:7). It can be shown from the Bibical
references that when Levi entered Egypt he was 60+3 years of age, with the
burden of the evidence pointing to 60 years. Since he died at the age of 137,
he lived 77 years in Egypt. If this is a calendar giving the names of the
reference patriarchs or generations, we would expect that Kohath was a
descendant of Levi and was born the year of Levi's death: that Amram was a
descendant of Kohath, and that he was born the year of Kohath's death. Aaron
in turn was born the year of Amram's death, and was descended from Amram.
Let us add these time spans together:
Levi 77 years in Egypt
Kohath 137 years in Egypt
Amram 133 years in Egypt
Aaron 83 years in Egypt
430 years -- Total Time
Turning now to the Biblical record, we discover the following interesting
information. "Now the time that the children of Israel dwelt in Egypt
was four hundred and thirty years. And it came to pass at the end of four
hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the
hosts of Jehovah went out from the land of Egypt" (Ex. 12:40,41).
. God thus shows us clearly that the calendar used to record the passage of
time during the Egyptian sojourn was based on the lives of Levi and his
descendants, Kohath, Amram and Aaron. This explains too the prophecy given
to Abraham in Gen. 15:13-16, where he is told his descendants would be
oppressed 400 years in a land that was not theirs, and that they would return
to their own land in the fourth generation.
Aaron's was the Fourth Generation
. I believe that God in His wonderful wisdom has given us the key that
unlocks the hitherto perplexing genealogies of Genesis 5 and 11. These
chapters are a calendar. The time was divided into patriarchal periods or
generation, even as the New Testament period is the generation of Jesus
Christ, and as the Egyptian sojourn was so divided. Thus, for example,
when Methuselah died, bringing to an end his generation, a man who was born
in the year of Methuselah's death was selected to be the next reigning
patriarch, or at least the next man for calendar reference. After Methuselah,
this was Lamech. None of the conditions of his selection are given,
except that he had to be a descendant of Methuselah. The Bible indicates
that Methuselah was 187 years old when he begat Lamech: i.e., when he was
187 the forefather of Lamech was born to Methuselah (Gen. 5:25).
This notice establishes the certainty of Lamech's blood descent
from Methuselah by showing where his forefather tied into the life of
. The selection of the next patriarch had to include a birth date
coinciding with Methuselah's death date to insure a rational history. Had he
been born one or more years earlier an overlap would have occurred which
would have blurred history. If Lamech had been born one or more years kater
than Methuselah's death, a gap would have occurred which have confused
history. Therefore, when a citizen of the world of that day spoke of
an event occurring in the year Methuselah 950, only one year in history
answered to that date. Again, if he spoke of the year Lamech 2, only one
year answered to this date, and he knew precisely how many years transpired
from Methuselah 950 and Lamech 2.
. At the beginning men were comparatively scarce. Thus it seems apparent
that when Adam died, there was no one born that year who was qualified to
become the next reference patriarch. When Seth died 112 years later the
same situation prevailed. But when Enosh, the grandson of Adam, died 98
years after Seth, a child who was a descendant of Enosh was born in the
same year, and this child was eventually named as the next reference
patriarch. this was Kenan. Kenan's life span thus became the calendar
reference for that period of history. The calendar was continued in this
fashion until Methuselah died and Lamech was born.
. When Lamech was born he was the one to whom the calendar was
referenced. But his descendant who was born the year of Lamech's death and
who should have become the next patriarch died in the flood. This can
easily be known, for Lamech died 5 years before the flood and only Noah
and his immediate family survived the flood. Noah, who as an immediate
son of Lamech, of necessity became a substitute calendar reference, even
though he was not born the year of Lamech's death. Thus the flood events
are all dated by the life span of Noah (Gen. 7:6,11; Gen. 8:4,5,13,14).
. When Noah died 350 years after the flood, the same situation prevailed
that existed when Adam died. Few people lived upon the earth, and no one
met the conditions required to become the next reference patriarch. When
Shem died 152 years after Noah, the child Arpachshad, a descendant of Shem,
was born in the same year and he became the next patriarch. The calendar was
then continued in this same fashion until Terah was born.
. When Terah was born he was the reference patriarch. But during his
life span God brought into being the nation of Israel through Terah's
immediate son, Abram. Thus the descendant of Terah who was born the
year of Terah's death was outside the Messianic line and outside of God's
chronological purposes. God effectively had narrowed men down to the
family of Abram. The normal method of calendar keeping was set aside in the
absence of patriarchs who qualified. When Abraham died, no descendant of his
was born the year of his death. When Isaac, the immediate son of Abraham,
died, the same situation prevailed. This was repeated when Jacob, the
immediate son Isaac, died. But in the year that Levi, the immediate son of
Jacob died, a descendant of Levi was born whose name was Kohath, and
he apparently met the qualifications of a reference patriarch. Thus he
continued the calendar line as we have seen. Amram followed Kohath, and
Aaron followed Amram. Interestingly it can be shown that in a real sense
Aaron's generation continued until Christ's began 1981 years ago.(6)
. A chronology beginning with Adam may now be set forth. To tie this
genealogical table to our present calendar, synchronization between the
Biblical and secular histories should be found. Because so much work
has been done in recent times, particularly in relationship to the dating of
the kings of Israel, this can be done rather readily. Edwin R. Thiele, in
his book The Mysterious Numbers of the Hebrew Kings established the date of
the death of solomon and the division of the kingdom as 931 B.C.(7)
Since Solomon reigned 40 years (I Kings 11:42) and began building the
temple in the fourth year of his reign (I Kings 6:1), this building
began in the year 967 B.C. this date in turn can be related to the
exodus because in at least two places God gives a time bridge from the
exodus to the building of the temple. The first is recorded in I Kings 6:1,
where 480 years is indicated as the time span between these events. The
second can be shown from the chronology of the Hebrew judges.(8)
. A time span of 480 years brings us to 1447 B.C. as the date of the
Exodus. If we work back from this date to Adam, we arrive at the date for
Adam as 11013 B. C. The key dates are as follows:
Creation of Adam 11013 B.C.
Seth born 10883 B.C.
Enosh's generation 10778-9873 B.C.
Kenan's generation 9873-8963 B.C.
Mahalel's generation 8963-8068 B.C.
Jared's generation 8068-7106 B.C.
Enoch's generation 7106-6741 B.C.
Methuselah's generation 6741-5772 B.C.
Lamech born 5772 B.C.
Noah born 5990 B.C.
Flood 4990-4989 B.C.
Arpachshad's generation 4488-4050 B.C.
Shelah's generarion 4050-3617 B.C.
Eber's generation 3617-3153 B.C.
Peleg's generarion 3153-2914 B.C.
Reu's generation 2914-2675 B.C.
Serug's generation 2675-2445 B.C.
Nahor's generation 2445-2297 B.C.
Terah born 2297 B.C.
Abram born 2167 B.C.
Isaac born 2067 B.C.
Jacob born 2007 B.C.
Entrance into Egypt 1877 B.C.
Exodus 1447 B.C.
Foundation of temple laid 967 B.C.
Division of Kingdom 931 B.C.
The First Civilization
. The development of a Biblical chronology beginning with Adam is
interesting, but will it hold up when compared with the known facts of
secular history? To ascertain this, the earliest civilization of
antiquity will next be examined to determine its location and the time of
. The threshold of history appears to be located in the area of the
present nation of Iraq. Albright writes:(9)
Archaeological research has established that there
is no focus of civilization in the earth that can
begin to compete in antiquity and activity with the
basin of the Eastern Mediterranean and the region
immediately to the east of it...The Obeidan is the
earliest clearly defined culture of Babylonia,
where we find its remains underlying nearly all the
oldest cities of the country, such as Ur, Erch,
Lagash, Eridu, etc. This proves that the
occupation of the marshlands of Babylonia by human
settlers came rather late in history of the
irrigation culture, probably not far from 3700 B.C.
. Thus the archaeological evidence shows that the location of the first
civilization after the flood was in the Mesopotamia Valley, and this agrees
exactly with the Bible, for it reports the first cities were Babylon, Erech,
Nineveh, etc. (Gen. 10:10, 11).
. The date of 3700 B.C. suggested by Albright is apparently
satisfactory to most archaeologists. M. B. Rowton writes that in Uruk, one
of the most ancient Mesopotamia sites, the earliest level of monumental
buildings is that of the level known as Uruk V. He concludes,(10) "the
beginning of Uruk V can plausibly be dated 3500 B.C." These dates of 3500
or 3700 B.C. are estimates arrived at by starting at a more clearly defined
historical point and allowing a reasonable period of time for each
level of occupation prior to this. Thus, the archaeological evidence
appears to indicate that prior to about 3700 B.C. there was no substantial
civilization began to be formed in the plains of Sumer in the land of Babylon,
Erech, Ur, etc.
. How does this time compare with the Biblical chronology? In Genesis 10
the notice is given that the first building activity after the flood is
that of Nimrod, the beginning of whose kingdom was Babel, Erech and Accad,
all of them in the land of Shinar (Gen. 10:10). But when did Nimrod
come upon the scene? His genealogical descent is that of Noah, Ham,
Cush, Nimrod (Gen. 10:1,6,8). The Bible offers no timetable for this side
of the family tree, but it does offer precise information regarding
another branch, that of Noah, Shem, Arpachshad and Shelah. If the
genealogical statements of the Bible are studied one might note that very
often two branches of the tree are offered. One is that of the descendants
leading eventually to Christ and about which precise timetables are given,
as we have seen. The second is the genealogical descent of that side of the
family which turned away from God. It can be shown that the timetable of
these two lines run roughly parallel.(11)
. It thus may be assumed that Ham and Shem were contemporaries (they
obviously were, inasmuch as they were brothers), that Arpachshad and
Cush were nearly contemporaries, and that Shelah and Nimrod were probably
men of the same period of history. Thus, if Shelah's date is known, it may
be surmised that Nimrod's was close to the same date.
. Shela's date by Biblical reckoning was that of 4050 B.C. to 3617 B.C.
Nimrod then must have lived about this time. The Bible would thus suggest a
date of about 3900 to 3617 for the founding of the great cities of the
Mesopotamia Valley. Thus the date suggested by the evidence of archaeology
(3700-3500) accords very well with the Biblical statement.
. It is of more than passing interest in this connection that the name
Nimrod has left its mark on the Mesopotamia Valley. The great archaeologist
George Rawlinson writes:(12)
The remarkable ruin generally called Ahkerhuf,
which lies a little to the south-west of Baghdad,
is known to many as the "Tel-Nimrod"; the great dam
across the Tigris below Mosul is the
`Suhr-el-Nimrud'; one of the chief of the buried
cities in the same neighborhood is called `Nimrud'
simply; and the name of `Birs-Nimrud' attaches to
the grandest mass of ruins in the lower country.
The Confusion of Tongues
. The next bit of history that should be interesting to
investigate is the event of the tower of Babel. Is there any secular
evidence that relates to the account of this confusion of tongues as set
forth in Gensis 11? There is, indeed.
. It might first of all be noted that the account of Genesis 11 indicates
that prior to this time in history all men spoke one language. Moreover,
the leading civilization was that of these people who dwelt in the plains
of Shinar or Sumer. Their desire to be the one great civilization of
the world prompted the building of this great tower, which in turn
brought on God's interference with their plans so that they were forced to
separate into various nations.
. As has already been shown, the first great civilization of the world as
revealed by secular evidence was that which sprang forth in the Mesopotamia
Valley. The time of the beginning of the second important civilization
of antiquity could be of real significance. Presumably, it would have
begun very shortly after the tower of Babel. The event of the tower of Babel
can be known to have occurred during the generaton of Peleg, for in his
days the earth was divided (Gen.10:25). Peleg's generation was dated 3153
B.C. to 2914 B.C. Therefore one would expect no important civilizations
other than Babylonia to have an antiquity greater than about 3150 B.C.
Egypt Becomes A Great Civilization
. All archaeological evidence points to Egypt as the second great
civilization to appear. While there was a primitive culture in Egypt prior to
the First Dynasty, the uniting of all of Egypt under Pharaoh Menes to form
the First Dynasty was the signal for a major burst in the arts of
civilization. Albright writes:(13)
It is now certain that the level of Egyptian
culture remained considerably below that of
Mesopotamia until the First Dynasty, when under
strong indirect influence from the Euphrates
Valley, it forged ahead of the latter in a
. Interestingly, the new civilization of Egypt beginning with the First
Dynasty was patterned after the Babylonia (Mesopotamia) culture. Albright
The close of the predynastic Age and the beginning
of the Thinite (period of first two centuries)
period witnessed a sudden burst in the arts of
civilization. This seems to have been connected in
some way with an increase of cultural influence
from Asia, since there are numerous exact parallels
between Mesopotamia and Egyptian culture at this
time, the former being demonstrably older and more
original in nearly every instance.
. The date of the beginning of the First Dynasty under Menes is calculated
to be somewhere between 2800 B.C. and 3100 B.C. The early archaeologists
such as Breasted dated his reign at about 3400 B.C. As new archaeological
evidence was uncovered this date was moved forward to about 3000 B.C.
Albright believes 2850 B.C. is a good estimate.(15) William C. Hayes suggest
3100 B.C. is the best date presently available.(16)
. Considering the above information, one is struck by the fact that prior
to about 3100 B.C. to 2850 B.C. only one civilization of consequence
existed in the world. That was the nation of Babylonia on the plains of
Shinar. Then at that time, in a sudden burst of progress, Egypt grew to
become a second great civilization, a civilization patterned after the
first. And these dates are in almost exact agreement with the Biblical date
for the Tower of Babel. Surely the confusion of tongues as recorded in
Genesis 11 sent thousands of people skilled in all the arts and crafts of
Mesopotamia to Egypt and elsewhere. Thus accord can be seen between the
sacred and the secular records by this indirect evidence of the timetable of
the civilizations of antiquity.
Writing and the Tower of Babel
. It might be noted too that writing had its beginning in
Mesopotamia and may be related to the confusion of tongues. Sir Leonard
Wooley writes:(17) "All the archaeological evidence seems to prove that
true writing was first developed in southern Mesopotamia." The timing
for this event is given as 3500 to 3000 B.C. Gelb concludes:(18) "the
date of the earliest Sumerian writing should be set tentatively at about
. The confusion of tongues in Sumer some time in the period between
3150-2900 B.C. could well have been the catalyst that produced writing.
Before this dramatic civilization-splitting event all was secure. Only
one language was spoken in all the world. Verbal communication was
adequate and dependable. But then came this fearful event that shook the
very foundations of this great civilization. Men could no longer
understand each other. There must be a better way. The application of the
spoken word to clay tablets would provide insurance that this kind of a
happening would never totally destroy a culture again. The clay tablets
would always prove to be the reference point. One surely can see the
possibility if not the probability of this connection between writing and the
Tower of Babel.
. We thus see that the chronology of history established by Biblical
reckoning agrees rather satisfactorily with the archaeological
evidence of the earliest civilizations. The Biblical timetable is of
course the most reliable, for it is God's Word. If we have properly
interpreted it, it should make possible a far more definitive analysis of the
secular evidence than ever before. It should also provide a dependable
framework in which to understand dating evidence such as that offered by
radiometric isotopes like carbon 14.
. Hopefully, a perspective of history has been set forth that shows that
answers are potentially forthcoming when we begin with the Biblical
framework. The concept of a 13,000 year old world, which began to be
repopulated again after the flood some 7,000 years ago, and which 1,500
years later had grown to a point which allowed the spawning of the first great
cities, surely makes much more sense than that of mankind being around for
hundreds or even thousands of milleniums, and then becoming a cohesive
city civilization only in the last 5,500 years. Furthermore, the
apparent possibility of the end of the age occurring in our time also
accords far better with the shorter timetable.
. Admittedly, the first purpose of the Bible is not to be a textbook
of science or history. It is fundamentally a presentation of
God's grace revealed through Jesus Christ. But when the Bible does speak
in any field of learning, it does so with great care, accuracy and
authority. Three reasons might be advanced for this: l. These subjects are
often an integral part of the plan of salvation; 2. they are part of God's
message to man; and 3. by reason of His very nature God is accurate
when He speaks. Therefore, it possibly has much more to offer than many
have supposed. I hope that others will be encouraged to build upon the
suggestions offered in this presentation.
A CALENDAR OF EVENTS IN BIBLICAL HISTORY
CREATION. (about 13,000 years ago)...........................11013
CREATION OF ADAM.............................................11013
BIRTH OF SETH. Adam was 130 when Seth was born
BIRTH OF ENOS. Seth was 105 when Enos was born
END OF ENOS'S PERIOD 905 years after his birth
(Gen. 5:11) which is the year Kenan was born and
which began his period........................................9873
END OF KENAN'S PERIOD 910 years after his birth
(Gen. 5:14). This is the year Mahalaleel was born
and beginning of his period...................................8963
END OF MAHALALEEL'S PERIOD 895 years after his
birth (Gen.5:17). This is the year Jared was born
and beginning of his period...................................8068
END OF JARED'S PERIOD 962 years after his birth
(Gen.5:20). This is the year Enoch was born and
beginning of his period.......................................7106
END OF ENOCH'S PERIOD 365 years after his birth
(Gen. 5:23). This is the year Methuselah was born
and beginning of his period...................................6741
END OF METHUSELAH'S PERIOD 969 years after his
birth (Gen. 5:27). This is the year Lamech was
born and beginning of his period..............................5772
BIRTH OF NOAH. Lamech was 182 when Noah was
born (Gen. 5:28,29)...........................................5590
THE FLOOD (about 7,000 years ago). Noah was 600
when the flood came (Gen. 7:6)................................4990
DEATH OF SHEM 502 years after the flood
(Gen. 11:10,11). This is the year Arpachshad
was born and beginning of his period..........................4488
END OF ARPACHSHAD'S PERIOD 438 years after his
birth (Gen. 11:12,13). This is the year Shelah
was born and beginning of his period..........................4050
END OF SHELAH'S PERIOD 433 years after his birth
(Gen. ll:14,15). This is the year Eber was born
and beginning of his period...................................3617
END OF EBER'S PERIOD 464 years after his birth
(Gen. 11:16,17). This is the year Peleg was born
and beginning of his period...................................3153
TOWER OF BABEL
During Peleg's patriarchal period the division of
the continents occurred. The Tower of Babel must
have occurred between these dates (Gen. 10:25)...........3153-2914
END OF PELEG'S PERIOD 239 years after his birth
(Gen. 11:18,19). This is the year Reu was born
and beginning of his period...................................2914
END OF REU'S PERIOD 239 years after his birth
(Gen. 11:20,21). This is the year Serug was
born and beginning of his period..............................2675
END OF SERUG'S PERIOD 230 years after his
birth (Gen. 11:22,23). This is the year Nahor
was born and beginning of his period..........................2445
END OF NAHOR'S PERIOD 148 years after his
birth (Gen. 11:24,25). This is the year Terah
was born and beginning of his period..........................2297
BIRTH OF ABRAM TO TERAH. Terah was 130 years
old at birth of Abram.........................................2167
ABRAM ENTERED CANAAN..........................................2092
CIRCUMCISION OF ABRAHAM when he was 99
years of age..................................................2068
BIRTH OF ISAAC. Abraham was 100 years old at
birth of Isaac (Gen. 21:5)....................................2067
BIRTH OF JACOB. Isaac was 60 years old at birth
of Jacob (Gen. 25:26).........................................2007
1. Jacob arrives in Haran at the age of...........60
2. He works seven years for Rachel and is
then married to Rachel and Leah. He is then...67
3. Reuben is born to Leah the following year
when Jacob is..................................68
4. Simeon is born next to Leah when Jacob is......69
5. Levi is born next to Leah when Jacob is........70
6. Jacob finishes his second seven year
contract for Rachel when he is.................74
7. He works for wages for 20 years. In the
17th year of this period Joseph is born.
8. At end of the 20 year period Joseph is
weaned and Jacob wishes to leave Haran. He is..94
9. He works six years longer for his flocks
and leaves Haran at age.......................100
JACOB'S FAMILY ARRIVES IN EGYPT when Jacob
is 130 (Gen. 47:9) 1877
The Chronological Sequence During the Egyptian Sojourn
Remembering that the death year of one patriarch coincides with the birth
year of the next, the result must look like this:
Levi's Time in Egypt (137 minus 60).......................77 Years
Kohath's Period of Patriarchal Leadership................133 Years
Amram's Period of Patriarchal Leadership.................137 Years
Aaron's Age at the Time of the Exodus (Exod. 7:7).........83 Years
Historical Timetable of Pharaohs and Dynasties
1888 B.C. - Sesostris III became Pharaoh. He was part of the Middle
Kingdom or 12th Dynasty of Egypt. His father, Sesostris II, probably had
reigned during the previous 19 years and possibly came to an untimely
1886 B.C. - Jospeh became Prime Minister or Grand Vizier of Egypt under
1877 B.C. - The family of Joseph came to Egypt and took up residence
in the land of Goshen. The city of Avaris (Zoan in the Bible), which later
was called Tanis or Qantir, was their capital.
1850 B.C. - Sesostris III died after an exceedingly successful reign of 38
years. He was succeeded by another great 12th Dynasty Pharaoh named Amenemhet
III. Under his reign Joseph continued as Prime Minister. A canal bearing
Joseph's name was constructed at this time.
1806 B.C. - Joseph died.
1802 B.C. - Amenemhet III died after a 48 year reign. During his reign
Egypt was prosperous, tranquil and productive. He was succeeded by
Amenemhet IV who reigned for the brief period of 9 years. During his reign
there was much internal strife for royal supremacy.
1791 B.C. - Amenemhet IV died and was succeeded by the last Pharaoh of
the 12th Dynasty, Sebeknefrure.
1787 B.C. - Sebeknefrure's brief reign of 4 years ended and with it ended
the 12th Dynasty. The 13th Dynasty began. The reigns of succeeding Pharaohs
were short and the empire began to dissolve. The Israelites, who no doubt
are the "Hyksos" of Archaeological fame, took advantage of the internal
struggles to acquire a strong hand in the Egyptian government and indeed
some of them may have reigned as Pharaohs during this period.
1580 B.C. (approx.) - Several dynasties have ruled over Egypt since 1787
B.C. At this time Ahmose I began to reign as the first king of the 18th
Dynasty. He forcibly began to remove the Israelites (Hyksos) from
political power. The most war-like Israelites were driven from the land
and the Israelitish nation began to be severely oppresed. Either this
Pharaoh or a closely succeeding Pharaoh such as Thutmose I could well
have been the king who "did not know Joseph" (Exod. 1:8).
1560 B.C. (approx.) - Ahmose I was followed by his son Amenhotep I who
consolidated the gains of his father.
1540-1535 B.C. (approx.) - Thutmose I began to reign as king. He too was a
continuation of the 18th Dynasty. He continued and probably intensified
the oppressive measures against the Israelites, for he was ruling when
Moses was born. His animosity toward the Israelites was probably heightened
by his troubles with Palestine and Syria. His reign was followed by that
of his son Thutmose II.
1527 B.C. - Moses was born at a time when a royal edict condemned all the
boy babies to be destroyed. Princess Hatshepsut, a daughter of the king,
found him in the bulrushes and raised him as her son.
1501 B.C. - Thutmose III began to reign as the greatest king of the 18th
Dynasty. For approximately the first 25 years of his reign he was co-
regent with Princess Hatshepsut. She regarded herself as a king and
was the dominant ruler during this co-regency.
1487 B.C. - Moses fled from Egypt. King Hatshepsut, who had raised
him to be her son, sought to kill him because of his evident loyalty for
the Israelites. 1481 B.C. (approx.) - King Hatshepsut died and Thutmose III
con-tinued to reign until the time of the exodus.
Israel went out of Egypt (Thutmose III)........1447 B.C.
Israel entered into Canaan.....................1407 B.C.
EXODUS FROM EGYPT 430 years later
(Exod. 12:40)..............................1447 B.C.
ENTRANCE INTO CANAAN 40 years later........1407 B.C.
Chronology of the Judges B.C. Israel Chronology Years
The Exodus 1447
Entrance into Canaan 1407
Initial 40 year Period in 1407-1367 Land had rest 40
Canaan. During this
period the conquest of Land had rest 80
Canaan occurred under
Joshua and Othniel de-
Next 80 Year Period in 1367-1287
Canaan. During this
Period Ehud and Shamgar
deliver Israel Land had rest 40
Next 40 year Period in 1287-1247
Canaan. Deborah and Land had rest 40
Barak were deliverers Abimelech rules 3
during this period
Gideon judged 1247-1207 Tola judged 23
Abimelech rules 1207-1204 Jair judged 22
Tola judged 1204-1181
Jair judged 1181-1159
Jephthah judged 1159-1153 Jephthah judged 6
Ibzan judged 1153-1146 Ibzan judged 7
Elon judged 1146-1136 Elon judged 10
Abon judged 1136-1128 Abon judged 8
Samson judged 1128-1108 Samson judged 20
Eli judged 1108-1068 Eli judged 40
Ark in Philistines'hands 1068-1067 Ark captured 1
Samuel judged 1067-1047 Final period of
Saul reigned as king 1047-1007 Samuel 20
David reigned 1007- 967 360
Solomon reigned 971- 931
Foundation of temple
laid in fourth year of
Solomon's reign 967
Note on Oppression By Heathen Power
Israel served Cushanrishathaim 8 years Judges 3:8
Israel served Eglon 18 years 3:14
Israel oppressed by Jabin 20 years 4:3
Israel in hand of Midian 7 years 6:1
Philistines oppressed Israel 18 years 10:8
Israel in hand of Philistines 40 years 13:1
I Samuel 4:18
Saul king 1047 B.C. (about 3,000 years ago)
David 1007 B.C.
Solomon 971 B.C.
Temple Foundation laid 967 B.C.
Solomon's temple con- 967 B.C.
struction began 480
years after exodus
(I Ki. 6:1)
Division of kingdom at 931 B.C.
death of Solomon 36
Chronological Table of the Kings of the Divided Kingdom
JUDAH (2 Tribes)
King Reign Character
1. Rehoboam 931-913 B.C. (17 yrs ) Bad
2. Abijah 913-911 ( 3 yrs.) Bad
3. Asa 911-870 (41 yrs.) Good
4. Jehoshaphat 873-848* (25 yrs.) Good
5. Jehoram 853-841* ( 8 yrs.) Bad
6. Ahaziah 841 ( 1 yr. ) Bad
7. Athaliah 841-835 ( 6 yrs.) Bad
8. Joash 835-796 (40 yrs.) Good
9. Amaziah 796-767 (29 yrs.) Good
10.Azariah 792-740* (52 yrs.) Good
11.Jotham 750-732* (16 yrs.) Good
12.Ahaz 735-716 (16 yrs.) Bad
13.Hezekiah 716-687 (29 yrs.) Good
14.Manasseh 697-643 Bad
15. Amon 643-641 ( 2 yrs.) Bad
16.Josiah 641-609 (31 yrs.) Good
17.Jehoahaz 609 ( 3 mo. ) Bad
18.Jehoiakim 609-598 (11 yrs.) Bad
19.Jehoiachin 608-597* Bad
20.Zedekiah 597-587 Bad
(Destruction of Jerusalem and captivity of Judah)
ISRAEL (10 Tribes)
King Reign Character
1. Jeroboam I 931-910 B.C. (22 yrs.) Bad
2. Nadab 910-909 ( 2 yrs.) Bad
3. Baasha 909-886 (24 yrs.) Bad
4. Elah 886-885 ( 2 yrs.) Bad
5. Zimri 885 ( 7 days) Bad
6. Tibni 885-880
7. Omri 885-874* (12 yrs.) Bad
8. Ahab 874-853 (22 yrs.) Bad
9. Ahaziah 853-852 ( 2 yrs.) Bad
10.Joram 852-841 (12 yrs.) Bad
11.Jehu 841-814 (28 yrs.) Bad
12.Jehoahaz 814-798 (17 yrs.) Bad
13.Jehoash 798-782 (16 yrs.) Bad
14.Jeroboam II 793-753* (41 yrs.) Bad
15.Zechariah 753-752 ( 6 mo. ) Bad
16.Shallum 752 ( l mo. ) Bad
17.Menahem 752-742 (10 yrs.) Bad
18.Pekahiah 742-740 ( 2 yrs,) Bad
19.Pekah 752-732* (20 yrs.) Bad
20.Hoshea 732-722 ( 9 yrs.) Bad
(Capture of Samaria and captivity of Israel)
Remnants of these 10 tribes joined
with nation of Judah, which is then called Israel.
Israel (10 tribes) destroyed 722 B.C.
Israel (Judah augmented by remnants from
10 tribes) subdued by Egypt 609 B.C.
Israel taken in to Babylonian captivity
and temple destroyed 587 B.C.
Babylonia conquered by Cyrus, king of
Medes and Persians (under Cyrus
first contingent of Jews returns to
Jerusalem) 539 B.C.
Temple partially rebuilt and rededicated 515 B.C.
Ezra returned to Jerusalem to reestablish law 458 B.C.
Rebuilding of wall by Nehemiah 445 B.C.
Christ was born 7 B.C.
Christ was baptized 29 A.D.
Christ died on cross 33 A.D.
Jerusalem destroyed by Romans 70 A.D.
(1) Compare Genesis 7:13, 9:18 and I Peter 3:20
(2) Compare Genesis 11:27 ff, Genesis 12:4 and Acts 7:4
(3) For example, Genesis 10:21 describes Shem as "the father of all
children of Eber," though Eber is removed from Shem by several generations
(cf. Genesis 11:10-16)
(4) The fact that Jesus was born a few years earlier (probably 7 B.C.) does
not diminish the force of this argument, for 1981 A.D. is in principle
related only to Christ's birth date and not to any other.
(5) Camping, Harold. Adam When? Ch. 3
(6) Ibid., ch. 6
(7) Thiele, Edwin R., The Mysterious Numbers of the Hebrew Kings, Eerdmans,
Rev. edition 1965, pg. 53,54. Much additional support can be given to
the accuracy of this date from the reigns of three of the greatest of the
Egyptian Pharaohs - Sesostris III, Tuthmosis III and Rameses II. A discussion
of this is of course beyond the scope of this artice.
(8) Camping, Harold; ch. 5
(9) Albright, William Foxwell; From the Stone Age to Christianity,
Doubleday & Co., Inc. 1957, pg. 32
(10) Rowton, M. B., in The Cambridge Ancient History, Cambridge University
Press, 1964, pg. 57,58
(11) Camping, Harold, ch. 7
(12) Rawlinson, George, Egypt and Babylon, John W. Lovell Co., pg. 9
(13) Albright, pg. 142
(14) Ibid., pg. 157
(16) Hayes, William C., The Cambridge Ancient History, 1964, pg. 4
(17) Wooley, Sir Leonard, The Beginnings of Civilization, The New York
American Library, 1965, pg. 364
(18) Gelb, A Study of Writing, pg. 63
END OF FILE
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