Archaeology

Joshua Slays Higher Critics

The letters from Abdi-Heba seem to have been written to either Amenhotep II or Amenhotep III. Since one of the letters from Abdi-Heba mentions that the pharaoh, whom he was requesting help from, had conquered the land of Naharaim and the land of Cush, this would likely point to Amenhotep II, who indeed had military campaigns against both these countries. This letter also mentions that the ‘Apiru [Hebrews] were at one time known as slaves
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Joshua Slays Higher Critics

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We recently had a prophecy in the Lord’s house.  (Prophecy is one of the nine gifts of the Spirit listed in I Corinthians, Chapter 12.)  The Word of the Lord to the congregation was that the natural wealth of the entire universe could not purchase one ounce of God’s mercy and grace—not one single ounce.  Luke 12:16-21:

16 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:

17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?

18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.

19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.

20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?

21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.

Have you ever thought that worldly wealth was just Monopoly money that one attempts to accumulate during this very short vapor called life?  Have you considered that one passes from the earth, leaving behind his accumulation to another, and then returns to the dust from which he is made? Jesus said in Matthew 16:26:

For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

Most have allowed this Monopoly life to blind their eternal vision. 

Have you been born again as Jesus explains in John 3?  Are you ready to dip into the fountain of God’s mercy and grace?  Are you yearning for fulfillment that lasts forever?  Are you ready to be washed clean in the blood of Christ and to be set free from this earth’s empty bondages?  Jesus Christ is the only name under heaven by which men can be saved.  He is the way, the truth, and the life.  He is the only soul redeemer.  Make your move now.  Click onto “Further With Jesus” for childlike instructions and immediate entry into the Kingdom of God. NOW FOR TODAY’S SUBJECT.

GOD SAID, Psalms 19:7-12:

7 The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.

8 The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.

9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.

10 More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.

11 Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.

12 Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults.

GOD SAID, Joshua 1:1-6:

1 Now after the death of Moses the servant of the LORD it came to pass, that the LORD spake unto Joshua the son of Nun, Moses' minister, saying,

2 Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel.

3 Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses.

4 From the wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and unto the great sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your coast.

5 There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.

6 Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them.

MAN SAID: The Bible is simply ancient folklore.  Its supernatural claims are fictional and its historic account valueless.

Now THE RECORD: Welcome to GodSaidManSaid feature article 766 that will once again establish the full inerrancy of God’s Holy Word.  All of these features are archived here in text and streaming audio for the edification of the saints and as ammunition in the battle for the souls of men.  Every Thursday eve, God willing, they grow by one. 

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Thank you for coming.  May God fill your heart with Light and Truth. 

When God says yes, a host will arise to say no, and the results of that unbelief have been deadly.  No scientific truth has ever controverted the declarations in the Holy Bible—not one—yet men contest vociferously.  As far as man is concerned, the origin of the devastating dichotomy roots in the Garden of Eden with our grandmother mtDNA Eve.  In an act of unbelief and disobedience, Eve chose Satan’s words of death over God’s Words of life, and Adam followed.  They died spiritually—the second death—that very day. All of their progeny since then have been shapen in iniquity (Psalms 51:5) and are dead in trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1).  Thus, we have been left the desperate need to be born-again and the reason Jesus Christ is the only way, truth, and life.  You must be born a second time to see the Kingdom of God (John 3:3). 

Because of the deadly Adamic root known as the carnal nature, unregenerated man cannot see or handle the truth.  It’s “like mother, like daughter,” and “like father, like son.”  Born-again is God’s plan of salvation, and, as we should expect, it’s ingenious. 

Skeptics have amassed against the Bible from page one, verse one.  They deny creation, the Garden of Eden, the fall, Noah and the global flood, the Tower of Babel and God’s confounding of the languages, Sodom and Gomorrah, Moses and the Exodus, giants, Joshua fit the Battle of Jericho, and so much more—yet all these issues are certified true beyond reasonable doubt.  Even in this light, they continue to carp and malign. 

Was there a Moses?  Was there a Joshua and did he lead Israel in the conquering of Canaan land?  Several pages from John Argubright’s book, Bible Believer’s Archaeology: Historical Evidence that Proves the Bible, follow.  (Note: GodSaidManSaid has taken the liberty of replacing verses from the NKJV with verses from the KJV.)

After wandering in the wilderness for forty years, Moses handed over the leadership of the Hebrew nation to Joshua, who brings the children of Israel into the Promised Land. 

According to the Bible, after entering Canaan, Joshua had to go to war with the inhabitants of the land. 

There is an amazing piece of evidence to support this.  A letter has been found that was written by a man named Abdi-Heba, Governor of Jerusalem, to an unnamed Pharaoh, requesting aid from Egypt in fighting the approaching Hebrews.

The letter states the following:

“Why do you not hear my call for help? All the governors are lost; the king, my lord, does not have a single governor remaining!  Let the king send troops and archers, or the king will have no lands left. 

All the lands of the king are being plundered by the Habiru [Hebrews].  If archers are here by the end of the year, then the lands of my lord, the king, will be saved, but if the archers are not sent, then the lands of the king, my lord, will be lost.” 

(El-Amarna Letter EA.286)

Compare this with one of the following Bible statements found in Joshua 10:1-5:

1 Now it came to pass, when Adonizedek king of Jerusalem had heard how Joshua had taken Ai, and had utterly destroyed it; as he had done to Jericho and her king, so he had done to Ai and her king; and how the inhabitants of Gibeon had made peace with Israel, and were among them;

2 That they feared greatly, because Gibeon was a great city, as one of the royal cities, and because it was greater than Ai, and all the men thereof were mighty.

3 Wherefore Adonizedek king of Jerusalem sent unto Hoham king of Hebron, and unto Piram king of Jarmuth, and unto Japhia king of Lachish, and unto Debir king of Eglon, saying,

4 Come up unto me, and help me, that we may smite Gibeon: for it hath made peace with Joshua and with the children of Israel.

5 Therefore the five kings of the Amorites, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, the king of Eglon, gathered themselves together, and went up, they and all their hosts, and encamped before Gibeon, and made war against it.

The Bible states in Joshua 10:26 that Joshua defeated these kings, captured them, and killed them, including the king of Jerusalem, Adoni-Zedek. 

It is very likely that Abdi-Heba and Adoni-Zedek are one in the same man.  The reason being is that “Adoni-Zedek” is a title rather than the actual name of the king. Adoni-Zedek means “Lord of Zedek,” similar to the name Melchi-Zedek, which means “Prince of Zedek,” who was the ruler of Salem according to Genesis 14:18.  The Hebrews would have associated this title with the prince of Salem, an early name for the city of Jerusalem. 

So the letters written by Abdi-Heba, trying to stop the advancing Hebrews, were likely written by either Adoni-Zedek, mentioned in Joshua 10:1, or Adoni-Bezek, another king mentioned in Judges 1:7, who was defeated by Joshua and buried in Jerusalem. 

The letters from Abdi-Heba seem to have been written to either Amenhotep II or Amenhotep III.  Since one of the letters from Abdi-Heba mentions that the pharaoh, from whom he was requesting help, had conquered the land of Naharaim and the land of Cush, this would likely point to Amenhotep II, who indeed had military campaigns against both these countries.  This letter also mentions that the ‘Apiru [Hebrews] were at one time known as slaves. 

The letter states: “The arm of the mighty king conquers the land of Naharaim and the land of Cush, but now the ‘Apiru have captured the cities of the king…Behold Zimreda, the townsmen of Lachish have smitten him, slaves who had become ‘Apiru [Hebrews].”  (El-Amarna Letter EA.288)

The timeframe of this letter also corresponds to the dating found in the Bible. 

According to I Kings 6:1, the Exodus was 480 years before King Solomon built the temple, which occurred in 1012 B.C.  That would date the Exodus at approximately 1486 B.C. and their entering into the land of Canaan around 1446 B.C. 

According to the historians, Amenhotep II began his reign somewhere between 1450 and 1425 B.C., right in the middle of Joshua’s conquest of Canaan. 

Fascinating! 

Other letters requesting aid from Egypt have also been discovered that were written during this same timeframe as well.  These letters are a part of what are known as the Amarna tablets. 

The following letter is from a man named Shuwardata, governor of Gath, who mentions “the chief of the Hebrews,” a possible reference to Joshua himself.  It states:

“May the king, my lord, know that the chief of the ‘Apiru [Hebrews] has invaded the lands which your god has given me; but I have attacked him.  Also let the king, my lord, know that none of my allies have come to my aid, it is only I and Abdi-Heba who fight against the ‘Apiru chief

Zurata, the prince of Accho, and Indaruta, prince of Achshaph, were bribed with fifty chariots by the ‘Apiru so that they would not come to my help; now they are against me.  I plead with the king, my lord, if you agree, send Yanhamu, and let us quickly go to war, so that the lands of the king, my lord, might be restored to their original boundaries!”

(Ancient Near Eastern Texts 487)

Shuwardata, governor of Gath, is also mentioned in the following letter from a man named Milkilu, a prince of Gezer, with whom he was allied:

“Let it be known to the king that there is a great hostility against me and against Shuwardata.  I ask the king, my lord, protect his land from the approaching ‘Apiru.”

(El-Amarna Letter EA.271)

These two men later seem to have offered allegiance to Joshua, as evidenced from a second letter from Abdi-Heba, governor of Jerusalem:

“Let it be known what Milkilu and Shuwardata did to the land of the king, my lord!  They sent troops of Gezer, troops of Gath…the land of the king went over to the ‘Apiru.

But now even a town near Jerusalem, Bit-Lahmi [Bethlehem] by name, a village which once belonged to the king, has fallen to the enemy…Let the king hear the words of your servant Abdi-Heba, and send archers to restore the imperial lands of the king!  But if no archers are sent, the lands of the king will be taken by the ‘Apiru people.  This act was done by the hand of Milkilu and Shuwardata.”

(El-Amarna Letter EA.290)

This letter is interesting because even though Joshua destroyed most of the inhabitants of the cities he came across, the city of Gath was spared.  Joshua 11:22 states: “There was none of the Anakims left in the land of the children of Israel: only in Gaza, in Gath, and in Ashdod, there remained.

Another letter indicates that the prince of Gezer and the prince of Shechem surrendered to Joshua during the conquest of the land:

“See the actions taken by Milkilu [prince of Gezer], and the sons of Lab’ayu [princes of Shechem], who have handed over the land to the ‘Apiru.”

(El-Amarna Letter EA.287)

This letter also confirms the Bible in that these two cities were also spared in Joshua’s conquest, and they are mentioned together in Joshua 21:21

These and many other Amarna letters, from this same timeframe, mention cities that had either fallen to or were fighting against the advancing Hebrews.  These cities match exactly with the cities Israel had captured as listed in the Book of Joshua as well as Judges, Chapter 1

The cities and lands include Lachish, Gezer, Ashkelon, Hazor, Gath, Keilah, Acco, Bethlehem, Gaza, Jerusalem, Achshaph, Carmel, Beth-Shean, Megiddo, Shechem, Makkedah, Ajalon, Zorah, as well as a mention of the land of Canaan itself.  So there is no doubt that the ‘Apiru or Habiru mentioned in the Amarna letters were the Biblical Hebrews. 

Another amazing find that confirms the Book of Joshua was found on the walls of an Egyptian temple at Medinet Habu.  The walls contained a list of cities that Ramesses II recorded as enemy towns.  The cities are represented on a wall by a man bearing a shield, and within the shield is the name of the city.  Among the list of cities were Janum, Aphekah, and Hebron

Joshua 15:53-54 states that among the cities on the border of the children of Judah were “And Janum, and Bethtappuah, and Aphekah, And Humtah, and Kirjatharba, which is Hebron, and Zior; nine cities with their villages:” [End of quotes]

The Word of God is true and righteous altogether—a place to build a life that will last forever. 

GOD SAID, Psalms 19:7-12:

7 The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.

8 The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.

9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.

10 More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.

11 Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.

12 Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults.

GOD SAID, Joshua 1:1-6:

1 Now after the death of Moses the servant of the LORD it came to pass, that the LORD spake unto Joshua the son of Nun, Moses'' minister, saying,

2 Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel.

3 Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses.

4 From the wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and unto the great sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your coast.

5 There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.

6 Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them.

MAN SAID: The Bible is simply ancient folklore.  Its supernatural claims are fictional and its historic account valueless.

Now you have THE RECORD.

References:

Authorized King James Version

Argubright, J., Bible Believer’s Archaeology: Historical Evidence that Proves the Bible, Argubright, 2013

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