Dating Problem

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by Dr. Bob, Mar 3, 2004.

  1. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
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    Working on firming up dates for patriarchs (teaching chronology of the OT this semester). Ran into a glitch.

    PREMISE - I started at I Kings 6:1 "And it came to pass in the four hundred and eightieth year after the children of Israel were come out of the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of Solomon's reign over Israel . . "

    Solomon reigned 970BCE, so 4 years in is 966BCE. Add 480 years to get the exodus at 1446BCE. That works for me.

    NEXT - went to Exodus 12:40 to count back from exodus. "Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years."

    Added 430 years to 1446BCE and got 1876BCE for the beginning of the sojourn by Jacob.

    NOW THE PROBLEM - one of my students questioned me, quoting both an OT and NT verse that contradicted my figures!

    Genesis 15:13 "And he said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years; and also that nation, whom they shall serve, will I judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance."

    Acts 7:6 "And God spake on this wise, That his seed should sojourn in a strange land; and that they should bring them into bondage, and entreat them evil four hundred years. And the nation to whom they shall be in bondage will I judge, said God: and after that shall they come forth, and serve me in this place."

    This adds only 400 years to 1446BCE, making the beginning of Jacob's sojourn at 1846BCE.

    And obviously throws off all my dates for Isaac and Abraham by 30 years.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. LandonL

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    Just a thought, but my OT professor (Dr. Hall at Oklahoma Baptist University) constantly reminded us that numbers in the OT seem to have meaning, and were usually rounded off rather than being exacting. I don't know if that helps you or not; or if it somehow contradicts inerrancy of scripture (which I affirm and I don't think this contradicts that doctrine).

    Hope that helps -some-.

    Respectfully,
    -Landon
     
  3. Tim

    Tim
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    Dating problem?

    I thought you were having issues with your teenage daughter! [​IMG]
     
  4. Paul of Eugene

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    The words from God to Abraham are rounded off, just to give him the general idea. It wasn't necessary for Abraham to have the exact years, it was only necessary for him to realize it would be centuries of time.
     
  5. freeatlast

    freeatlast
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    Dr. Bob,
    I have not done the math, but what number of days did you use for a year. The passage in the Old most likely used 360 days and the NT may be based on 365.Also you may have to figue in leap years. I know that the numbers do play a role in dealing with Daniel in some places.
     
  6. Paul of Eugene

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    Free at last - the difference between 365 and 360 years for 400 years is only 5 or 6 years.

    HEY DR BOB - I noticed you used BCE instead of BC in talking about the years before Christ.

    When did you decide to use the secular abreviations (before common era) instead of the religiously inspired BC?
     
  7. Dr. Bob

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    Because the religiously inspired BC/AD are patently offensive to most people I work with! (I am adjunct prof at a state college).

    Haven't used the old method in a long time.

    BTW, for fun ask anyone what AD means? And when it began? And when Jesus was born?
     
  8. lindell dunning1

    lindell dunning1
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    Bob,would you consider that the first thirty years were a honeymoon? Joseph's family was treated fairly well when they arrived in Egypt.
    Then as time went by,namely thirty years,the children of Israel were afflicted. Hence no discrepancy.
     

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