Israel's Egyptian Bondage

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by R. J., May 29, 2012.

  1. R. J.

    R. J.
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    For anyone interested, here is a bible study concerning Israel's Egyptian bondage. The question is whether or not the children of Israel lived in Egypt for 430 years. Here is the verse:

    Exodus 12:40 Now the length of time the Israelite people lived in Egypt was 430 years.

    Most modern versions contain this verse stating that the children of Israel lived in Egypt for 430 years. The following posts will present scriptural proof that the children of Israel were NOT in bondage in Egypt for 430 years.
     
  2. R. J.

    R. J.
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    Let's start by observing who went down into Egypt with Jacob.

    The highlighted names in the passage below include Jacob, his 12 sons and 1 daughter, his 51 grandsons and 1 granddaughter and his 4 great grandsons. The total comes to 70 which is the total given in Genesis 46:27. When Jacob, Joseph, Manasseh and Ephraim are excluded, the total comes to 66 which is the total given in Genesis 46:26.


    Genesis 46:8 And these [are] the names of the children of Israel, which came into Egypt, Jacob and his sons: Reuben, Jacob's firstborn. 9 And the sons of Reuben; Hanoch, and Phallu, and Hezron, and Carmi. 10 And the sons of Simeon; Jemuel, and Jamin, and Ohad, and Jachin, and Zohar, and Shaul the son of a Canaanitish woman. 11 And the sons of Levi; Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. 12 And the sons of Judah; Er, and Onan, and Shelah, and Pharez, and Zerah: but Er and Onan died in the land of Canaan. And the sons of Pharez were Hezron and Hamul. 13 And the sons of Issachar; Tola, and Phuvah, and Job, and Shimron. 14 And the sons of Zebulun; Sered, and Elon, and Jahleel. 15 These [be] the sons of Leah, which she bare unto Jacob in Padanaram, with his daughter Dinah: all the souls of his sons and his daughters [were] thirty and three. 16 And the sons of Gad; Ziphion, and Haggi, Shuni, and Ezbon, Eri, and Arodi, and Areli. 17 And the sons of Asher; Jimnah, and Ishuah, and Isui, and Beriah, and Serah their sister: and the sons of Beriah; Heber, and Malchiel. 18 These [are] the sons of Zilpah, whom Laban gave to Leah his daughter, and these she bare unto Jacob, [even] sixteen souls. 19 The sons of Rachel Jacob's wife; Joseph, and Benjamin. 20 And unto Joseph in the land of Egypt were born Manasseh and Ephraim, which Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On bare unto him. 21 And the sons of Benjamin [were] Belah, and Becher, and Ashbel, Gera, and Naaman, Ehi, and Rosh, Muppim, and Huppim, and Ard. 23 And the sons of Dan; Hushim. 24 And the sons of Naphtali; Jahzeel, and Guni, and Jezer, and Shillem. 25 These [are] the sons of Bilhah, which Laban gave unto Rachel his daughter, and she bare these unto Jacob: all the souls [were] seven. 26 All the souls that came with Jacob into Egypt, which came out of his loins, besides Jacob's sons' wives, all the souls [were] threescore and six; 27 And the sons of Joseph, which were born him in Egypt, [were] two souls: all the souls of the house of Jacob, which came into Egypt, [were] threescore and ten.

    There are two tribes, Levi and Judah, whose generations can be followed through their time in Egypt to the exodus. Let's see what the scriptures tell us about LEVI.



     
  3. R. J.

    R. J.
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    Let's examine the scriptures using a WORST CASE scenario to determine the Israel's time in Egypt. This scenario produces the LONGEST time the children of Israel could have lived in Egypt

    Look at Genesis 46:11 and note that of Levi had three sons that went down into Egypt with him. The middle son was KOHATH. This son, being the middle child, was at the very least 3 years old when he entered Egypt. Now let's examine the following verse to determine Kohath's age and, of course, his time in Egypt:

    Exodus 6:18 And the sons of Kohath; Amram, and Izhar, and Hebron, and Uzziel: and the years of the life of Kohath [were] an hundred thirty and three years.

    Let's calculate Kohaths time in Egypt. He arrived at the age of 3 and died at the age of 133. Therefore, 133 - 3 = 130. He was in Egypt 130 years.

    Now, notice that Kohath had four sons, the first of which was AMRAM. For the sake of this discussion, let's suppose a worst case scenario where Amram was born just 10 years before Kohath's death. Therefore, Amram was born after Kohath had been in Egypt for 120 years.

    Next, we notice in the verse below that Amram died at the age of 137.

    Exodus 6:20 And Amram took him Jochebed his father's sister to wife; and she bare him Aaron and Moses: and the years of the life of Amram [were] an hundred and thirty and seven years.

    Let's suppose a worst case scenario where MOSES was born just 7 years before Amram's death. Therefore, Moses was born after Amram was in Egypt for 130 years.

    Next, we notice in the verse below that Moses was 80 years old at the exodus from Egypt.

    Exodus 7:7 And Moses [was] fourscore years old, and Aaron fourscore and three years old, when they spake unto Pharaoh.

    Finally, let's add the times of each of the discussions above and see what total we get:

    Amram was born after Kohath had been in Egypt for 120 years.
    Moses was born after Amram had been in Egypt for 130 years.
    Moses was 80 years old at the exodus from Egypt.

    That WORST CASE scenario totals 330 years which is far short of the 430 years stated in Exodus 12:40. In the worst case scenario, the scriptures prove the verse to be incorrect.

     
  4. R. J.

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    Now, let's examine the scriptures using a NORMAL CASE scenario to determine the Israel's time in Egypt.

    Look at Genesis 46:11 and note that of Levi had three sons that went down into Egypt with him. The middle son was KOHATH. Let's suppose that Kohath was 3 years old when he entered Egypt. Now let's examine the following verse to determine Kohath's age and, of course, his time in Egypt:

    Exodus 6:18 And the sons of Kohath; Amram, and Izhar, and Hebron, and Uzziel: and the years of the life of Kohath [were] an hundred thirty and three years.

    Now let's calculate Kohath's time in Egypt. He arrived at the age of 3 and died at the age of 133. Therefore, 133 - 3 = 130. Kohath was in Egypt 130 years.

    Now, notice that Kohath had four sons, the first of which was AMRAM. Let's suppose a normal case scenario where Amram was born when Kohath was 68 years old. Therefore, 68 - 3 = 65. Amram was born after Kohath had been in Egypt for 65 years.

    Next, we notice in the verse below that Amram died at the age of 137.

    Exodus 6:20 And Amram took him Jochebed his father's sister to wife; and she bare him Aaron and Moses: and the years of the life of Amram [were] an hundred and thirty and seven years.

    Let's suppose a normal case scenario where MOSES was born when Amram was 67 years old. Therefore, Moses was born after Amram had been in Egypt for 70 years.

    Next, we notice in the verse below that Moses was 80 years old at the exodus from Egypt.

    Exodus 7:7 And Moses [was] fourscore years old, and Aaron fourscore and three years old, when they spake unto Pharaoh.

    Finally, let's add the times of each of the discussions above and see what total we get:

    Amram was born after Kohath had been in Egypt for 65 years.
    Moses was born after Amram had been in Egypt for 70 years.
    Moses was 80 years old at the exodus from Egypt.

    That NORMAL CASE scenario totals 215 years.
     
  5. R. J.

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    Finally, let's look at the reading of Exodus 12:40 in the KJV with emphasis on the punctuation. Here is the verse:

    Exodus 12:40 Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, (COMMA) who dwelt in Egypt, (COMMA) [was] four hundred and thirty years.

    What is between the COMMAS identifies this group (children of Israel) as the ones who dwelt in Egypt. THAT'S ALL. The SOJOURNING was 430 years. Part of that sojourning was spent living in Egypt. In the normal case scenario presented previously, it appears that the children of Israel lived about 1/2 of the 430 years in Egypt or about 215 years.
     
  6. Deacon

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    To my knowledge, the Authorized Version and the NKJV are the only versions that use the word "sojourning", most older English versions properly translate it "dwelt".

    The AV translated "sojourning" from the Hebrew word "moshab". The use of the word was a response to understanding the people of Israel did not reside in Egypt that long.
    Although its an improper translation of the word, it probably conveys the original intent.

    (The NKJV also uses the word "sojourn" but footnotes its meaning as, "length of stay").

    You can study how the word "moshab" is used by finding how it is translated in other passages.
    It is used 66 times in Genesis alone - 4:16; 11:2. 31;13:6.7.12 (x2),18, 14:12; 16:3; 18:1; 19;1, 29, 30 (x3); 20:1, 15; 21:16 (x2), 20, 21; 22:5, 19; 23:10; 24:3, 37, 55, 62; 25:11, 27; 26:6,17; 27:19, 44; 29:14, 19; 31:34; 34:10 (x2), 16, 21, 22,23; 35:1; 36:7,8; 37:1, 25; 38:11 (x2), 14; 43:33; 44:33; 45:10; 46:34; 47:4, 6 (x2), 11, 27; 48:2; 49:24; and 50:22.

    Genesis 12:40 in the Samaritan Pentateuch and the Greek Septuagint say that Israel had lived in Canaan and Egypt [SP] (and Egypt and Canaan [LXX]) for 430 years.

    Rob
     
    #6 Deacon, May 30, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: May 30, 2012
  7. R. J.

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    Thanks for the response, Rob. I think you meant Exodus 12:40 instead of Genesis 12:40.

    I do agree with your post that the children of Israel "sojourned" in both Canaan and Egypt for a total of 430 years.
     
  8. kyredneck

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    ....
    16 And in the fourth generation they shall come hither again; for the iniquity of the Amorite is not yet full. Gen 15

    Kohath, Amram, and Moses are three generations. Do you consider the children (the ones who entered in with Joshua) of the exodus generation as the 'fourth generation'?

    [edit to add] I'm using the ASV, sorry.
     
    #8 kyredneck, Jun 1, 2012
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  9. kyredneck

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    And he said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be sojourners in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years; Gen 15:13 ASV

    And God spake on this wise, that his seed should sojourn in a strange land, and that they should bring them into bondage, and treat them ill, four hundred years. Acts 7:6 ASV

    Not being argumentive, just curious how you address these passages.
     
    #9 kyredneck, Jun 1, 2012
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  10. Deacon

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    No offense taken it's a logical question.

    Three points:
    1) Paul was not speaking with precise precision but he used the number in a more general way.

    2) Note in both passages the word "and"; the people of Abraham would sojourn AND be afflicted.

    3) Just a guess but I'd say that the affliction mentioned in both passages would include both a) the servitude and b) the separation from the land of promise.

    Rob
     
  11. R. J.

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    Hi Kyredneck,

    Thank you for your interest in this bible study. I haven't considered Genesis 15:16 in this study. The Lord is speaking to Abram but the generations could not have been calculated from him. Since the generation of the exodus died off during the 40 years of wandering in the wilderness, perhaps the first generation should be counted from Levi.

    To address the 400 years stated in Genesis 15:13 and in Acts 7:6, I would like to quote from my book "From Beginning To End --- A Biblical Chronology of Historic and Prophetic Events". From pages 24 and 25:

    Thursday, May 5, 1921 BC


    With the death of his father, Terah, in Haran, Abraham obeyed God and, by faith, began the sojourn to the promised land. The pilgrimage began on the 15th day of Abib on the Hebrew calendar. This date marks the start of the 430 year sojourn in foreign lands (i.e. Canaan and Egypt).


    Abraham, his wife, Sarah, and his nephew, Lot, entered Canaan where he built an alter between Bethel and Ai. This place is some 10 miles north of Jerusalem in the hill country overlooking the Jordan river valley.


    A famine forced Abraham and Lot to move to Egypt for a short while. Upon returning to Bethel and Ai, they parted ways with Lot choosing the fertile Jordan river valley while Abraham move south to Hebron.


    In 1912 BC, Lot was taken captive by a king to the east of the Jordan river. Abraham was notified and was first called a Hebrew at that time. Here is the verse:


    Genesis 14:13 And there came one that had escaped, and told Abram the Hebrew; for he dwelt in the plain of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol, and brother of Aner: and these were confederate with Abram.


    Some ascribe this name to Eber, the 4th from Noah, although there is no scriptural support for it.


    In 1910 BC, Abraham conceived Ishmael by his Egyptian servant, Hagar. Then, in 1896 BC, Abraham conceived Isaac by his wife, Sarah.


    1891 BC


    Isaac was weaned and Ishmael was cast out as Abraham's heir. Although Abraham was grieved by this development, he remembered a promise that God had given him. That promise was that “in Isaac shall thy seed be called”. At this point, Isaac is referred to by Abraham as his “only begotten son”.


    There occurs a chronological issue at this time based upon the following verses:


    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;


    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.


    Note that this persecution began when Isaac was 5 years old and 30 years after Abraham had began his sojourn to the promised land. Thus, from this time in 1891 BC to the exodus from Egypt in 1491 BC, it is exactly 400 years.
     
    #11 R. J., Jun 1, 2012
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  12. R. J.

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    On the contrary, Rob. I believe the apostle Paul was quoting Genesis 15:13 which states a precise number (i.e. 400 years). If you look at my response to Kyredneck, you will see that Abraham had already been in the promised land for 30 years. Thus, the 430 year prophecy was reduced by those 30 years and is now prophecied to be 400 years.

    In all of his epistles, the apostle Paul taught ACCORDING to the Old Testament. Paul's epistles INTERSECT the Old Testament with the mysteries of the body of Christ that were revealed to Paul by the glorified Lord Jesus Christ.
     
  13. R. J.

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    Kyredneck,

    Technically, Joshua was in Moses generation. He was the only Israelite of that generation to enter the promised land following the 40 years of wandering in the wilderness. With that in mind, I believe Joshua represented the FOURTH generation. Therefore, the generations were most likely counted from Levi.

    However, that leaves us with the question as to whether or not JACOB was considered a "generation". He did go down into Egypt.
     
  14. robycop3

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    Abraham was the man to whom GOD made all the promises He fulfilled, or will fulfill, in the Israeli people. So, technically, Abe can be considered the first Israeli.
    God passed His birthright to Isaac, although Ishmael was born first. But, since Abe earnestly asked God to bless Ish as well as Ike, He thus gave Ish 12 sons, preserved the Arab people from much conquest, and gave them their petroleum riches of today.
    And then, God passed the birthright to Jacob, in spite of Esau's being firstborn. But because Jake conspired with his mom to cheat Esau outta the birthright, insteada letting GOD work it out in HIS own way. I believe that, because of this, God punished Jake for a number of years with family sorrows, but, near the end of his life, He made it all up, allowing Jake to be reunited with Joseph, whom he'd believed had been dead for many years.

    In GOD'S time, He raised up Moses to be His man to lead Israel outta Egypt to the land He'd promised to Abraham's descendants. And I believe it was 430 years after Abe journeyed to Canaan.
     

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