The Apple Of God's Eye

March 23, 2009

Did Pharaoh (Amenhotep II) Die In The Red Sea Crossing?

Filed under: Israel - House Of,Miracles — melchia @ 9:36 pm
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The pharaoh of Egypt at that time was Amenhotep II. The overwhelming biblical and historical evidence is that he did not die with his army in pursuit of Israel.

In Psalm 136:15, we find that God “overthrew Pharaoh and his host (army) in the Red sea.” The Hebrew word translated here as “overthrew” is “na’ar.” This word is also found in Exodus 14:27. It does not mean “to drown” or “to toss or tumble about as in the water” as some have attempted to assert. It simply means “shook off” as is mentioned in the margins of many Bibles and in “The New Brown, Driver, Briggs, Gesenius Hebrew and English Lexicon.”

(Nehemiah 5:13 is a good illustration of how “na’ar” should be translated.) Therefore, these verses simply say that God shook off the Egyptians (including Pharaoh) from their pursuit of the Israelites. These scriptures say nothing of who was drowned.

In Exodus 14:28 we see that the waters covered “the host of Pharaoh,” but Pharaoh himself is not mentioned. Exodus 15:19 in the Authorized King James Version reads: “For the horse of Pharaoh went in with his chariots and with his horsemen into the sea, and the Lord brought again the waters of the sea upon them.”

At first, this might appear to be evidence that Pharaoh drowned. But an examination of this verse reveals that “horse” should not be singular. Verse 19 of Exodus 15 is correctly rendered in the New King James Version (also called the Revised Authorized Version): “For the horses of Pharaoh went with his chariots and his horsemen into the sea, and the Lord brought back the waters of the sea upon them.” Naturally, the horses and horsemen of Egypt were considered to be Pharaoh’s. But this scripture does not say that Pharaoh’s personal horse, or that Pharaoh himself, drowned in the sea.

This is significant because the death of such an important person would almost certainly have been given special note in the Bible. The Old Testament contains many clear references to the deaths of enemy kings, most of them much less important than this pharaoh. Archaeology proves that Amenhotep II ruled for at least 16 years after the Exodus.

Is The Red Sea Crossing A Myth?

Filed under: Miracles — melchia @ 9:28 pm

Is the Red Sea crossing a mere myth? Some doubters, without faith, say what happened is an impossibility. They suggest that the Israelites actually crossed a reedy marsh at the northern end of the Red Sea. The Bible itself, however, proves that this is not what happened.

The expanse of water which at first stopped the Israelites in their trek out of Egypt was the same body of water in which Solomon later based a “navy of ships.” See I Kings 9:26-28. The name of this sea in the original Hebrew text is “yam suph” (verse 26). The same name is found in the Hebrew in Exodus 15:4 and 22. Was “yam suph” a marsh or a shallow lake? Did the translators make a mistake in identifying this place as the Red Sea?

The evidence proves that the answer to both of these questions is no. Solomon’s ships brought back great treasures from distant ports. The cargo of gold alone weighed about 22 tons (I Kings 9:28). The language and meaning is clear; Solomon’s men did not merely pole their way across a lake and return with a few ounces of the precious metal. Solomon’s ships were seagoing vessels and were manned by those who were thoroughly experienced in sailing the oceans (verse 27).

But there is stronger evidence yet. The biblical descriptions of the crossing of “yam suph” could hardly be applied to wading across a reed-filled, marshy bog. Notice: “Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea into dry land, and the waters were DIVIDED. So the children of Israel went into the MIDST of the sea on the dry ground, and the waters were a WALL TO THEM ON THEIR RIGHT HAND AND ON THEIR LEFT” (Ex. 14:21-22, NKJV; compare verse 29).

Notice also verses 28 and 30: “Then the waters returned and covered the chariots, the horsemen, and all the army of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them. Not so much as one of them remained …. So the Lord saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore.” Elsewhere it is shown that Pharaoh’s army DROWNED in the water as it OVERFLOWED them (Ex. 15:4; Heb. 11:29; Deut. 11:4). The water returned with such great force that not one Egyptian was able to save himself by wading to shore, by swimming
to shore, or by clinging to a horse or a piece of a chariot until he could reach safety. No doubt these were Egypt’s finest young men. There were 600 chariots alone (Ex. 14:7, 9). Was there not at least one strong swimmer among Pharaoh’s army?

And consider, even though they walked on dry ground, the Psalmist tells us that the children of Israel passed through the DEPTHS of “yam suph” (Ps. 106:9). Notice Moses’ song: “Pharaoh’s chariots and his army He has cast into the sea; His chosen captains also are drowned in the Red Sea. The depths have covered them; they sank to the bottom like a stone. Your right hand, O Lord, has become glorious in power; Your right hand, O Lord, has dashed the enemy in pieces. And in the greatness of Your excellence You have overthrown those who rose against You; You sent forth Your wrath which consumed them like stubble. And with the blast of Your nostrils the waters were gathered together; the floods STOOD UPRIGHT like a heap; and the DEPTHS CONGEALED in the heart of the sea” (Ex. 15:4-8, NKJV).

In the New Testament, the crossing of the Red Sea is referred to as a “baptism” of the Israelites (I Cor. 10:1-2). True baptism is accomplished only by total immersion in water. With a wall of water standing on each side of the fleeing Israelites and the cloud covering them, the entire nation, in effect, was buried in water. The picture is striking. Walking across a dried-up marsh, on the other hand, could hardly be taken to represent baptism.

The term “yam suph” does not refer to any supposed “Reed Sea.” The Bible record clearly refers to what we know of today as the Red Sea, the same Red Sea which is several miles wide and about 200 feet deep in the spot where the Israelites must have crossed! The crossing of the Red Sea was a spectacular miracle which carries great meaning for Christians today.

Why Was Jesus Christ Buried Outside Of Jerusalem?

Filed under: Jesus Christ — melchia @ 5:15 am

Place of the Skull

John 19:19-20 and Matt. 27 show us Christ was crucified outside Jerusalem, in Golgotha. Was there a meaning to this? To find out, we will go back to Leviticus 4, which gives us amazing detail into this later sacrifice (some 1300-1400 years later). This is the sin offering, slaughtered  by the sinner.

Verses 11-12 show that the bulk of the sin offering was carried outside the camp. Why? What was so important about this step?

“But your sins have come between you and your God, and by your evil doings his face has been veiled from you, so that he will give you no answer.” Is. 59:2, BBE).

The sacrifice was so completely identified with sin, it was looked upon as sin. This is the significance of why Christ had to be killed and buried outside Jerusalem.

Heb. 13:11-12 also talks specifically about Christ perishing outside Jerusalem, because He became sin. The geographical separation between Golgotha and Jerusalem was a type of the separation of between Christ and God. He knew the bullock of the ancient sacrifice was a type which represented Him and Golgotha was His wilderness.

This was the first  time in history that Christ was abandoned by God the Father. He could not be within Jerusalem, though he loved it and it would have been hard for Him to turn His back on it. Remember, He wept for it (Luke 19).

Where was the place of Christ’s sacrifice?

Golgotha – the place of the skull –  was a barren rock cliff located just outside the northern wall of the Old City of Jerusalem, to the west of Herod’s gate and overlooking the Garden Tomb. This cliff is the highest point of the mountain ridge which extends from the area of the City of David, in the south.

When Abraham was instructed to offer up Isaac, he was told to go to the “land of Moriah” and offer him on “one of the mountains” there (Gen. 22:2). The land of Moriah included the hills of Jerusalem. Solomon later built the Temple on Mount Moriah (II Chron. 3:1). It seems entirely possible, even likely, that this was the same mountain on which Abraham went to sacrifice Isaac. Golgotha was the highest point on that mountain ridge, and, therefore, the most logical place for a sacrifice. God permitting Christ to be sacrificed for the sins of the world was foreshadowed by Abraham’s sacrifice. Apparently, the two events took place at the same location!

By the time of the Romans, a major highway between Jerusalem and Damascus existed near this area. Many people passed by this spot daily in their travels to and from the city. Typically, the Romans crucified criminals in conspicuous places as examples to others.

Although many people believe that the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is built on the site of the crucifixion, there is more reason to accept the hill above the Garden Tomb as the biblical Golgotha, “the place of a skull” (Matt. 27:33; Mark 15:22; John 19:17).

Did The Father Forsake Jesus On The Cross?

Did the Father forsake Jesus on the cross? The answer is yes, God really DID forsake His Son while He hung on the cross and it is important to understand why.

Except for Jesus Christ, all humans have sinned (Rom. 3:23). Sin, the breaking of God’s law, requires the penalty of death: “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:23).

Sin also cuts one off from God: “Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does is will, He hears him” (John 9:31, RAV). Isaiah wrote: “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; nor His ear heavy, that it cannot hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear” (Isa. 59:1-2, RAV).

Nevertheless, when one does repent — change, turn around, go the right way, and overcome — God will hear and answer that person’s request.

So, did Jesus sin? Is that the reason the Father cut Himself off from His only begotten Son who poured out His blood and finally died on the cross? No, not at all. Jesus was perfect. He never sinned. Notice: “For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth” (I Pet. 2:21-22).

Jesus, the perfect Lamb of God, willingly took on our sins and, by His shed blood and death, suffered the penalty of sin for us. While He was on the cross, Jesus bore the sins of all of humanity, paying the penalty for them. Therefore, Jesus was cut off from God while on the cross because sin separates man from God. If God the Father was going to accept Jesus’ one supreme sacrifice as payment for the sins of all mankind, He had to turn His back on the sinbearer — Jesus. He had to forsake Jesus and let Him pay the full penalty for our sins.

God so loved the world that He was willing to cut Himself off from His perfect, loving, and obedient Son so that the Son could bear the sins of the world. How great and wonderful God’s love is toward us!

But, remember, God forgives and applies Christ’s sacrifice to only those who have truly repented, those who are willing to turn from their evil ways, the very ways which made Christ’s supreme sacrifice necessary. Christ came to save man FROM his sins — not IN his sins.

Why did Jesus ask the question He asked? Didn’t He know that God had to turn His back on Him and forsake Him while He was carrying the sins of the world? Certainly, Jesus fully realized that God had to forsake Him if the world were going to receive an atonement for its sins. This was one of the reasons Jesus came into the world (John 3:16-17). Why, then, did He ask the question? The answer is that by so doing He fulfilled prophecy.

David too, in a time of trouble, cried out, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? Why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring?” (Ps. 22:1).

These words, spoken by a man after God’s own heart hundreds of years before the crucifixion, prophetically applied to Christ. They foreshadowed the utter anguish Jesus felt when God the Father forsook Him.

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