Sunday, June 18, 2017

The Golden Sword of Marian Apocalypse

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by

Damien F. Mackey









Part One:
From Creation to the Flood


“When the Lamb opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, ‘Come!’  
Then another horse came out, a fiery red one. Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and to make people kill each other. To him was given a large sword”.

Apocalypse 6:3-4



This new history of the world is dedicated to Jesus Christ, the Lord of History:

‘I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End’.

(Revelation 22:13)



God and Creation

Jesus Christ has revealed God as a Trinity of Persons, a Communion or Family of Love.
According to Pope Francis: Christ “has shown us the face of God, One in substance and Triune in Persons; God is all and only Love, in a subsisting relationship that creates, redeems, and sanctifies all: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.”
The Son of God showed that God first sought us, and revealed that eternal life is precisely “the immeasurable and gratuitous love of the Father that Jesus gave on the Cross, offering his life for our salvation.”
“And this love, by the action of the Holy Spirit, has irradiated a new light upon the earth and in every human heart that welcomes it.”
“May the Virgin Mary help us to enter ever more, with our whole selves, into the trinitarian Communion, to live and bear witness to the love that gives sense to our existence”.

The Holy Family, Jesus (in his humanity), Mary and Joseph, is an icon of the Holy Trinity, Joseph reflecting the Father and Mary (the Immaculate Conception) reflecting the Holy Spirit (the uncreated Immaculate Conception).

God, who lives beyond time, has made everything that is (John 1:1-2): “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made”.
God created all ex nihilo, “not out of anything”.
Psalm 33:9: “He spoke, and it was.” That is, its existence depended on his Word; the universe sprang into being at his command; he had only to speak, and it arose in all its grandeur where before there was nothing.

I personally do not favour the concept of a Big Bang explosion, but I might be wrong.
Can anything constructive, let alone our glorious cosmos, emerge from an explosion?
Proverbs 8:30 describes Wisdom at play, as beautifully explained here:

This song describes the dynamic of authentic play. Play is not wasting time, but
entering into time with fullness of heart. This reflects rejoicing in the birth of each new day, delighting in how we as God’s children co-create with God, bringing forth a world of beauty.

“Day after day, God’s wisdom at play in the universe,
delighting to be with us, the children of earth”.

Wondrous Wisdom, rejoicing in earth’s birth and rebirth:
majestic mountains, rolling hills, roaring waters, flowing streams.
Playful Wisdom, setting out a table of fine food;
with whole grain bread, full-bodied wine, bountiful banquet blessing with joy.
Creative Wisdom, dancing on the edge of chaos;
divine desire dwells deep within, risking passion, daring us to dream.
Gentle Wisdom, calling out with dawns’ first light;
graceful instruction, creative counsel, whispers of wisdom speak softly to our heart.
Radiant Wisdom, sparkling starlight, flame of love,
resplendent as sunlight at mid-day, fields of wildflowers bright and alive.

“Gentle Wisdom” – hard to reconcile this with a Big Bang!
We need to learn again how, like Wisdom, to make ‘work’, playful, and not a soul-destroying drudge. God’s universe is intimately known to Him, for He “telleth the number of the stars: and calleth them all by their names” (Psalm 146:4, Douay). He rolled out those mighty luminaries like a child playing with marbles, but all done with a sublime teleological purpose (Genesis 1:14), to “serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years”.
Nowhere is this fact better exemplified than in Lieutenant-Colonel G. Mackinlay,’s The Magi: How They Recognised Christ's Star (Hodder and Stoughton, 1908), in which the author demonstrates that the heavenly cycles when properly co-ordinated with the life of Jesus Christ reveal a stupendous witness of sun, moon and stars as appropriately marking sacred times.

Those billions of years posited by astronomers and physicists seem to me to be ridiculous and eccentric. Who can reasonably think in terms of such massive numbers?
The solar system is, in my opinion, geocentric.
Anyway, no one can prove this statement to be un-scientific or wrong.
Some qualified scientists, at least, have cast serious doubt upon the supposed ‘vast cosmic ocean of dark energy (matter)’.

“Religious circles embraced the idea of an expanding universe because for the universe to be expanding, then at some point in the past it had to originate from a single point, called the “Big Bang”. Indeed, the concept of the Big Bang did not originate with Edwin Hubble himself but was proposed by a Catholic Monk, Georges Lemaître in 1927, two years before Hubble published his observations of the Red Shift.
The “Big Bang” coincided nicely with religious doctrine and just as had been the case with epicycles (and despite the embarrassment thereof) religious institutions sought to encourage this new model of the universe over all others, including the then prevalent “steady state” theory. In 1951 Pope Pius XII declared that Georges Lemaître's work proved the Christian dogma of divine creation of the universe.
Then history repeated itself. Evidence surfaced that the “Big Bang” might not really be a workable theory in the form of General Relativity, and its postulation that super massive objects would have gravity fields so strong that even light could not escape, nor would matter be able to differentiate.
Since the entire universe existing in just one spot would be the most super massive object of all, the universe could not be born”.

The science fiction version of cosmology with which scientists must assail us today - with its great galloping galaxies, cosmic vacuum cleaning Black Holes, microwave cooking radiation and Doppelganger (or is that Doppler?) Effect - seems to be entirely lacking in any sort of cogent Divine plan - the true structure of the universe.
It is all yet awaiting, I believe, a wiser interpretation.
There may well be, for example, a cosmic compatibility between the structure of the universe, on the one hand, and, on the other, the Garden of Eden; the Temple in Jerusalem (patterned on the Garden of Eden); and the Tent of Meeting. In the Book of Hebrews, St. Paul tells us that the Tabernacle, and all its services, were “patterns of things in the heavens” (Hebrews 9:23). The physical objects associated with the earthly sanctuary were “figures of the true” (Hebrews 9:24) — the “shadow of heavenly things” (Hebrews 8:5).
The Garden of Eden was, like the Temple afterwards, a micro-cosmos.
Dr. Ernest L. Martin’s “The Temple Symbolism in Genesis” is well worth reading in this regard. “Each physical item had its spiritual counterpart in Heaven”.

Early Genesis and Toledôt

The Triune God is not affected by time.
Genesis 1 has nothing to do with the time taken by God to create the universe – a ridiculous suggestion! So, Creationists and Evolutionists are free to debate the actual age of the earth.
As some have divined, Genesis 1 is (at least in part) a revelation to man of God’s work of creation. Man - and not God, who never tires nor ceases (Isaiah 40:28) - needs to retire in the evening and then to resume again in the morning.
The Six Days (Hexaëmeron) were real, 24-hour days.

Key to the structure of the Book of Genesis are the eleven colophon divisions, “These are the generations of …”.
Here is an arrangement of it:

  Tablet 
  Starting Verse 
  Ending Verse 
  Owner or  Writer 
 1
 Genesis 1:1
 Genesis 2:4a
  God Himself (?)
 2
 Genesis 2:4b
 Genesis 5:1a
  Adam
 3
 Genesis 5:1b
 Genesis 6:9a
  Noah
 4
 Genesis 6:9b
 Genesis 10:1a
  Shem, Ham & Japheth 
 5
 Genesis 10:1b
 Genesis 11:10a
  Shem
 6
 Genesis 11:10b
 Genesis 11:27a
  Terah
 7
 Genesis 11:27b
 Genesis 25:19a
  Isaac
 8
 Genesis 25:12
 Genesis 25:18
  Ishmael, through Isaac
 9
 Genesis 25:19b
 Genesis 37:2a
  Jacob
 10
 Genesis 36:1
 Genesis 36:43
  Esau, through Jacob
 11
 Genesis 37:2b
 Exodus 1:6
  Jacob’s 12 sons

These “generations” (Hebrew: toledôt) constitute the family histories of the various biblical patriarchs leading up to Moses. These (and not the fragmentary and confusing JEDP sources) are the documents upon which Moses drew to compile what we now call the Book of Genesis, of which he was the editor, but not the author.
The first of these toledôt, concluding Genesis 1, indicates this primary part of Genesis to be a “book” (2:4):

αυτήThis 3588ηis the 976βίβλοςbook 1078γενέσεωςof the origin 3772ουρανούof heaven 2532καιand 1093γηςearth

Moses substantially wrote the remainder of the Pentateuch, as according to tradition.
The Pentateuch would receive further editing, probably by the likes of Samuel, Solomon, Ezra.

Location of Paradise and Eden

Helpful geographical additions provided by editor Moses (Genesis 2:11-14), to elucidate for his contemporaries what had originally been a very simple account of the hydrography presented in Genesis 2 (Adam’s toledôt), enable us to identify the four rivers apparently originating from a single river in Eden. Clearly, the Tigris and Euphrates are the rivers still known today in Mesopotamia, and the Gihon is the circuitous Blue Nile of Ethiopia.
The Pishon, far more disputed, is presumably also towards the west, for reasons of symmetry. Some would place the Pishon in the region of Saudi Arabia.
These four rivers were still flowing many centuries later, in the days of Sirach, who now also included the Nile and the Jordan (Sirach 24:25-27). {Naturally, with the passing of time, and due to catastrophism and severe tectonic activity - for example, the Noachic Flood and the emergence of the Great Rift Valley - the source, courses and capacities of these primeval rivers would have altered significantly}. 
Throughout this ancient riverine system stretched the well-irrigated Paradise.
The Garden of Eden, where ancient Jerusalem would later be situated, was central to Paradise.
That is why Jerusalem is said in the Scriptures to be at “the centre of the earth” (e.g. Ezekiel 38:12). It also explains why Jesus Christ could pin upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem the murder of Abel, by Cain (cf. Genesis 4:8; Luke 11:51), ‘… from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the sanctuary’.    

The Creation of Man

Since “… our God is in heaven: He hath done all things whatsoever He would” (Psalm 113:11, Douay), the Triune God could have, had he so wished, created humankind by using an evolutionary process, just as he could have formed the universe through the agency of a Bang.
Pope Pius XII (Humani Generis, 1950) did not entirely discount the possibility of man’s having evolved from a lower form, but with an important qualification:

36. For these reasons the Teaching Authority of the Church does not forbid that, in conformity with the present state of human sciences and sacred theology, research and discussions, on the part of men experienced in both fields, take place with regard to the doctrine of evolution, in as far as it inquires into the origin of the human body as coming from pre-existent and living matter - for the Catholic faith obliges us to hold that souls are immediately created by God. However, this must be done in such a way that the reasons for both opinions, that is, those favorable and those unfavorable to evolution, be weighed and judged with the necessary seriousness, moderation and measure, and provided that all are prepared to submit to the judgment of the Church, to whom Christ has given the mission of interpreting authentically the Sacred Scriptures and of defending the dogmas of faith.

I personally find the theory of evolution to be un-scientific and against common sense.
The most pertinent comment about it, I believe, came from the witty pen of G. K. Chesterton: “The evolutionists seem to know everything about the missing link except the fact that it is missing”. And again: “Anthropologists … have to narrow their minds to the materialistic things that are not notably anthropic. They have to hunt through history and pre-history something which emphatically is not Homo Sapiens, but is always in fact regarded as Simius Insipiens”.
The “Cambrian Explosion”, that sudden appearance in the fossil record of complex animals with mineralized skeletal remains, is one sort of ‘explosion’ that I would accept. And it appears to be disastrous for the theory of evolution, which really likes things to happen very slowly.

Whilst, according to Genesis 1:27, “God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them”, the evolutionists promote a bestial origin for humanity. And they pitch back the origins of man with the increasing additions of a zero. Mungo Man (Australia), a relative youngster in the anthropological scheme of things, went from a 60,000 years old estimate to a 40,000 years old estimate in the space of a week.
No one batted an eyelid.

Skeletal remains must be force-fitted into a pre-conceived evolutionary matrix.
Those fine Neanderthals, for instance, have apparently been thus ‘doctored’. Dr. Jack Cuozzo, examining the skull of a ‘teenage Neanderthal’ in Germany, ‘found once again that the replica skull on display was made to look apelike, but a color slide purchased at the museum showed that the lower jaw was dislocated, positioned 30mm out of its socket!  This brought the upper jaw 30mm forward, looking more like a muzzle, and very apelike’.
The Neanderthals, who were physically far superior to us, and who lived much longer than we, were the long-lived antediluvian peoples, some of these also continuing on for a time after the Noachic Flood until this Divine decree was fully realised (Genesis 6:4): “Then the Lord said, ‘My Spirit will not contend with humans forever, for they are mortal; their days will be a hundred and twenty years’.”

A great ‘sin’ of certain scientists today is to imagine that they are fully equipped and entitled to pontificate philosophically and theologically. Most of them are not qualified to do this. Whilst science and technology have brought immense material benefits to our modern world, philosophy itself does not benefit at all from science speak.

We need a return to the pursuit of realism and common sense.
David Collits has well explained it (“Opening up to being – learning to trust ourselves again”):
An air of unreality pervades current day discourse. Focus on identity rights, same-sex ‘marriage’, unisex bathrooms, safe spaces, the mendaciously called ‘Safe Schools’ and so on bespeaks not only a divorce from tradition and custom, but more fundamentally a divorce from reality itself. Something unreal persists in political agitation for a panoply of rights not rooted in human nature or the cosmos itself, and which in fact denies the existence of human nature as such.
Such campaigning is based upon the liberal conceit constitutive of modernity that meaning and identity flows from an ever-expanding assertion of the will and not who we are as human beings. On this view, there is no human nature: I choose, therefore I am. This disconnection from reality is not confined to political issues but permeates our technology-saturated culture. Restoring contact with the real is vital for our culture to convey authentic meaning, as well as how we form our children, use technology and even how we worship.
… the further we are from an unmediated experience of reality, the further we are from God. It is not possible even to think of God philosophically or theologically if one has not first been exposed to the creation that God has put in front of us.
We come to know Being itself through exposure to created being. “The world is charged with the grandeur of God,” so wrote Gerard Manley Hopkins. God, transcendent but immanent to creation, is revealed in the beauty and order of the natural realm perceived in the senses and apprehended in the mind. …. because we are body-soul beings, truth is known to our minds because it is first known to our senses.
Catholicism is not a gnostic religion or philosophy in which knowledge is mediated directly to the mind apart from ‘evil’ matter. Knowledge of God comes first through sensory perception. It is not for nothing that Christ uses parables and lessons based on everyday contact with the earth: the mustard seed and the big tree it becomes, employment in the vineyard, the lilies of the field, the fig tree, the pearl, the field, and so on. Man’s first home was a Garden. The Prince of the Apostles’ occupation was to fish. The Church’s liturgy and sacraments, especially Baptism and the Eucharist, incorporate and elevate basic human and earthly realities: flowing water, bread and wine, oil. Authentic culture arises from liturgical cult fostered on humus, work with the soil that humbles us and can yet be offered to God. Genuine education grows around liturgical cult and is fostered by immersion in the Western canon, whose own roots are in that liturgical culture.
Centuries of rapid technological development, and decades of material wealth and relative peace in the West have inured generations of people to the vicissitudes and hardships that have been the common lot of humanity. Underappreciated perhaps is the negative effect that this material wealth has on the capacity for us to perceive created being and through that God himself. Especially is this acute in the case of the millennial generation, about which much has been written, from issues of housing affordability to its members’ apparent sense of entitlement and ‘flakiness’. ….
Ours is a technological age predicated … on the Modernist idea that reality itself is to be rejected and replaced with artificial constructions of our own, not simply technological but philosophical and ethical as well. The eclipse of religion, gender ideology, and the deconstruction of marriage and the family in the West are the end result of centuries of philosophical and cultural unrealism”.

Metaphysics, which has been replaced by bankrupt modernism and scientism, sorely needs to be revived. But, this time, metaphysics needs to be firmly established upon biblical (Hebrew) foundations, and not as a product of the ancient pagan Greeks.

The Father of Philosophy is God the Father, who created the human mind.
Faith and reason are like two wings on which the human spirit rises to the contemplation of truth; and God has placed in the human heart a desire to know the truth—in a word, to know himself—so that, by knowing and loving God, men and women may also come to the fullness of truth about themselves (cf. Ex 33:18; Ps 27:8-9; 63:2-3; Jn 14:8; 1 Jn 3:2)”, wrote pope John Paul II in his encyclical Fides et Ratio.

The Fall

The real existence of Adam and Eve, and of Noah (and his posterity), though almost universally doubted today (including some church leaders, it seems), may find a scientific ally in science. Do not geneticists refer to the maternal ancestor of all living humans as “Eve”?
The mitochondrial Eve, they call her, to whom our species is robustly and genetically linked.  

The ‘crafty serpent’ in Eden (Genesis 3:1), the Devil, Satan the accuser, the “great, fiery red Dragon” of the Apocalypse (12:3), cunningly masterminded the Fall of Adam and Eve.
Whilst this has been catastrophic for humanity, and for the whole created world, nevertheless, where sin increased, grace abounded all the more” (Roman 5:20). God, as has been famously remarked, is able to take a discordant note (such as the Fall) and write a whole new symphony.
Always a one better than the first.
He may use a ‘rival operation’. Thus the serpent seduced the woman, but now the new Woman, Mary, will crush the serpent’s head.
Saint Louis de Montfort in his Treatise on True Devotion to Mary, wrote of this marvellous cosmic bouleversement:

“God has established only one enmity — but it is an irreconcilable one — which will last and even go on increasing to the end of time. That enmity is between Mary, his worthy Mother, and the devil, between the children and the servants of the Blessed Virgin and the children and followers of Lucifer. Thus the most fearful enemy that God has set up against the devil is Mary, his holy Mother. From the time of the earthly paradise, although she existed then only in his mind, he gave her such a hatred for his accursed enemy, such ingenuity in exposing the wickedness of the ancient serpent and such power to defeat, overthrow and crush this proud rebel, that Satan fears her not only more than angels and men but in a certain sense more than God himself”.

Revelation 12:1-3: “Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. Then being with child, she cried out in labour and in pain to give birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads”. 

The Triune God, a Family of Love, is the all-seeing Creator.
But, in our age, the Devil is furiously leading a campaign of ‘sin against God’s creation’, particularly against the family. This is the final onslaught.
Such, indeed, was the firm view of Fatima seer, Sister Lucia:

“… the final battle between the Lord and the reign of Satan will be about marriage and the family. Don’t be afraid, she added, because anyone who operates for the sanctity of marriage and the family will always be contended and opposed in every way, because this is the decisive issue”. And then she concluded: “However, Our Lady has already crushed its head”.

Dr. Ernest L. Martin presented a strong case for the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil in the Garden to have been a fig tree – a view supported by tradition. Commenting on Jesus’s somewhat enigmatic and ‘out of season’ cursing of the barren fig tree (Matthew 21:18-22), Martin wrote (Secret of Golgotha, p. 260):

“It [the withered and dead fig tree] signified that NO LONGER would that symbolic tree be in the midst of humanity TO ENCOURAGE MANKIND TO SIN IN THE MANNER OF OUR FIRST PARENTS. But there is even more teaching. It meant that when Christ went to that miraculous tree looking for some figs to eat (like Eve did), CHRIST WOULD NOT FIND ANY WHATSOEVER! This signified that there was NOT going to be a REPETITION of what Eve (and later Adam) did in regard to the fig tree that they partook of. One fig tree [in the Garden of Eden] was the instrument to bring 'sin' into the world, BUT THE SON OF GOD COULD NOT FIND ANY FIGS ON HIS FIG TREE (the miraculous tree on the Mount of Olives that was typical of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil). Christ cursed THAT symbolic tree at the top of Olivet SO THAT NO MAN WOULD EAT OF IT AGAIN. And to COMPLETE his victory over sin, four days later Christ was going to be SACRIFICED FOR THE SINS OF THE WORLD JUST A FEW YARDS AWAY FROM THIS WITHERED AND DEAD TREE”.

That ‘rival operation’ again: Since Satan had used a tree to engineer the Fall, so would God use a Tree to undo Satan’s work. Galatians 4:4-5: “God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons”. And Colossians 2:13-15:

“When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having cancelled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the Cross”.

Christ’s agonising journey to Calvary and to his immolation upon the Cross was, in fact, a triumphal parade, thereby ending the reign of Satan - a foe forever now with ‘a crushed head’.  

Dr. Martin’s interpretation of the fig tree might well explain why Adam and Eve sewed fig leaves together to hide their shame immediately after the fruit-eating incident (Genesis 3:7).
Adam and Eve were no longer permitted to live in the Garden or to have access to the salutary Tree of Life (Genesis 3:24): “After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the Tree of Life”.
Although Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden, they still remained in the territory of Eden. It is important to note that the “Garden” and the country of “Eden” were not synonymous.
The Garden was in Eden.

According to some traditions, only Enoch and (later) Melchizedek were ever allowed after that to dwell in the Garden of Eden.

City of Cain

The next great catastrophe for man, after the Fall, was the first murder, when Cain killed Abel.
Did the goodly Abel, as a Priest, have privileged access, say, once a year, to the Holy of Holies in the Garden of Eden (like the High Priests of the Tent and Temple would have afterwards)?
Cain was allowed to bring his offerings of sin atonement only to the “door” (Genesis 4:7).
It needs to be recalled that the Temple of Yahweh, built by King Solomon, was patterned on the Garden of Eden.

Dr. Ernest L. Martin has clarified the approximate geographical location of Cain after his act of fratricide:

“Cain was sent into the land of Nod, East of Eden, away from the presence of God. He became cut off from the Eternal. God then gave him a “mark” to show that Cain was not completely forgotten and that a measure of protection would be afforded him and his descendants. Cain became a representative of all Gentiles. They were reckoned as being in Nod (wandering — without a fixed spiritual home). And while they could approach the East entrance to Eden, they could not go in. A barrier was placed around Eden”.

We do not need, then, to seek in far away Mesopotamia, for instance, to find the land of Nod, where Cain built the first city, named after his son, Enoch (Genesis 4:16-17).
Some biblically-minded historians have pointed to certain Cain-ite names in the land of Sumer (southern Mesopotamia), such as the famed earliest city of Eridu, strikingly like Irad, the name of Cain’s grandson (Genesis 4:18). It is quite plausible that the Cain-ites, afterwards, may have wandered eastwards, into NE Syria and Sumer, and there built their quite rudimentary ‘cities’, whose sites would have been developed by succeeding generations into more impressive cities, whilst still retaining their original names.
Nor do we need to go to Jericho as a possible dwelling place for Cain and to discover his city. Jericho’s Pre-Pottery Neolithic A (PPNA) level, denoting the first stage in early Levantine Neolithic culture, conventionally dating around 8000 to 7000 B.C., and containing the famous stone Tower of Jericho (almost eight meters high, set against the inner side of the wall) has hopefully been identified by some as Cain’s first city). But PPNA Jericho is far more likely post-diluvian Canaan-ite (cf. Genesis 10:19), rather than antediluvian Cain-ite.

The first city that Cain built, named “Enoch”, may simply have been a rather primitive form of enclosure for purposes of protection and as a statement of ownership – hence no longer archaeologically traceable. According to Josephus: “He [Cain] first of all set boundaries about lands: he built a city, and fortified it with walls, and he compelled his family to come together to it; and called that city Enoch, after the name of his eldest son Enoch”.

With this first city there began what St. Augustine (City of God) would distinguish as history’s metaphysical bifurcation into two incompatible camps: the City of Men versus the City of God.
The Cain-ites represented the former city and the Seth-ites, for a time at least, the latter.
Cardinal Carlo Caffarra sums up this primeval conflict as it has emerged in the “two cultures” of our own time:

“To summarise, this therefore is what is happening in the heart of man: Jesus, the Revelation of the Father, exerts a strong attraction to Himself. Satan works against this, to neutralise the attractive force of the Crucified-Risen One. The force of truth which makes us free acts on the heart of man. It is the Satanic force of the lie which makes slaves of us.
Yet, not being pure spirit, the human person is not solely interiority. Human interiority is expressed and manifested in construction of the society in which he or she lives. Human interiority is expressed and manifested in culture, as an essential dimension of human life as such. Culture is the mode of living which is specifically human.
Given that man is positioned between two opposing forces, the condition in which he finds himself must necessarily give rise to two cultures: the culture of the truth and the culture of the lie.
There is a book in Holy Scripture, the last, the Apocalypse, which describes the final confrontation between the two kingdoms. In this book, the attraction of Christ takes the form of triumph over enemy powers commanded by Satan. It is a triumph which comes after lengthy combat. The first fruits of the victory are the martyrs. “The great Dragon, serpent of the primal age, he whom we call the devil, or Satan, seducer of the whole world, was flung down to earth… But they [= the martyrs] overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of the testimony of their martyrdom” [cfr. Ap. 12, 9.11]”.

Tradition has Cain and Abel as twins.
The Seth-ites arose from the man, Seth, who had succeeded the righteous Abel (Genesis 4:25): “And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew”.
We cannot simply presume, though, that every single Cain-ite was an un-godly person, nor that every single Seth-ite was a godly one.

Cain-ites and Seth-ites

In terms of technology and warfare, material progress, the Cain-ites were the more memorable. According to Josephus:

“… Now Jared [Irad] was the son of Enoch; whose son was Malaliel; whose son was Mathusela; whose son was Lamech; who had seventy-seven children by two wives, Silla and Ada. Of those children by Ada, one was Jabal: he erected tents, and loved the life of a shepherd. But Jubal, who was born of the same mother with him, exercised himself in music; and invented the psaltery and the harp. But Tubal, one of his children by the other wife, exceeded all men in strength, and was very expert and famous in martial performances. He procured what tended to the pleasures of the body by that method; and first of all invented the art of making brass.

Considering that animal husbandry (Neolithic) and metallurgy (Chalcolithic) were already in human practice before the Flood, I think that we must accept that the sequence of Stone Ages, Palaeolithic to Chalcolithic, was both an antediluvian, and a post-diluvian, phenomenon.

The ancients deified the clever antediluvian Cain-ites. Almost every pagan god arose from this antediluvian period and was later picked up by the Greeks and Romans: Cain was Cronus; Lamech was a Zeus (but, variously, so could Cain be); Tubalcain was Vulcan and his wife was Aphrodite; Naamah, daughter of Lamech, is equivalent to Athena. And so on.
A few, such as Nimrod in his various divine guises, arose post-diluvially.
 
The Seth-ites, on the other hand, were generally the more spiritual line, possessing wisdom and discernment with a profound knowledge of the heavenly bodies, the true structure of things. Josephus, in Antiquities, wrote this of Seth and his progeny:

“Now this Seth, when he was brought up, and came to those years in which he could discern what was good, became a virtuous man; and as he was himself of an excellent character, so did he leave children behind him who imitated his virtues.
All these proved to be of good dispositions. They also inhabited the same country without dissensions, and in a happy condition, without any misfortunes falling upon them, till they died. They also were the inventors of that peculiar sort of wisdom which is concerned with the heavenly bodies, and their order”.

And further we read of the biblical Seth, according to the traditional accounts of him (http://www.biblicalcyclopedia.com/S/seth-traditions-concerning.html):

“There are many traditions concerning Seth (q.v.), not only in Rabbinic, but also in Christian, writings. According to the Rabbinic traditions, Seth was one of the thirteen who came circumcised into the world. The rest were Adam, Enoch, Noah, Shem, Terak, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Samuel, David, Isaiah, and Jeremiah (Midrash Tillim, fol. 10, col. 2). The book Shene Luchoth says that the soul of the righteous Abel passed into the body of Seth, and afterwards this same soul passed into Moses; thus the law, which was known to Adam and in which Abel had been instructed, was not new to Moses (Eisenmenger, Neuentdecktes Judenthum, 1, 645). Josephus relates that after the things that were to take place had been revealed to Seth how the earth was to be destroyed, first with water and then with fire lest those things which he had discovered should perish from the memory of his posterity, he set up two pillars, one of brick, the other of stone, and he wrote there on all the science he had acquired, hoping that, in the event of the brick pillar perishing by the rain, the stone would endure (Ant. 1, 2). Suidas (s.v. Σήθ) says, “Seth was the son of Adam of him it is said the sons of God went in unto the daughters of men — that is to say, the sons of Seth went in unto the daughters of Cain; for in that age Seth was called God, because he had discovered Hebrew letters and the names of the stars, but especially on account of his great piety, so that he was the first to bear the name of God”. Anastasius Sinaita (q.v.) in his ῾Οδηγός, p. 269 (ed. Gretser. Ingolst. 1606]), says that when God created Adam after his image and likeness, he breathed into him grace and illumination and a ray of the Holy Spirit. But when he sinned this glory left him, and his face became clouded. Then he became the father of Cain and Abel. But afterwards, it is said in Scripture, “he begat a son in his own likeness, after his image, and called his name Seth”, which is not said of Cain and Abel; and this means that Seth was begotten in the likeness of unfallen man, and after the image of Adam in paradise; and he called his name Seth — that is, by interpretation, “resurrection”, because in him he saw the resurrection of his departed beauty and wisdom and glory, and radiance of the Holy Spirit. And all those then living, when they saw how the face of Seth shone with divine light, and heard him speak with divine wisdom, said, “He is God”. Therefore his sons were commonly called the sons of God. That Seth means “resurrection” is also the opinion of Augustine (De Civitate Dei, 15, 17, 18): “Ita Seth, quod interpretatur resurrectio”.”

Much has been written, too, about the holy Enoch, the son of Jared (Genesis 5:18).
But, as with Seth, it is impossible at present to separate what may be fact from fiction.
What we can rely on, however, are these brief biblical accounts of him.
“Enoch lived three hundred sixty-five years. Enoch walked with God and he was not for God took him” (Genesis 5:23 and 24).
“By faith, Enoch was taken so he would not see death, and he was not found (on earth) because God translated him. Enoch has the testimony given to him, before his translation he had been well pleasing to God (Hebrews 11:5)”.
“Enoch, the seventh generation from Adam prophesied saying, ‘Behold, the Lord came with ten thousands of His holy ones to execute judgment on all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their works of ungodliness which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the blasphemous things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him’.” (Jude 1:14 and 15).

To Enoch is commonly attributed an accurate knowledge of the structure of the cosmos and the functioning of the celestial bodies, the stars, a wisdom later bestowed upon King Solomon who was able to testify (Wisdom 7:17-19):

“For it is [Wisdom] who gave me unerring knowledge of what exists, to know the structure of the world and the activity of the elements; the beginning and end and middle of times, the alternations of the solstices and the changes of the seasons, the cycles of the year and the constellations of the stars …”.

Even some Seth-ites may have been inducted into the pantheon of the ancient gods.
Holy Enoch, who has also been credited as the first who learned the art of writing (Jubilees 4), is frequently identified with the Egyptian Thoth, scribal god of wisdom, likewise considered to have invented writing. 
And the Egyptians may perhaps have identified Noah as their Nu, or Nun, “the watery one”, the deification of the primordial watery abyss in ancient Egyptian religion.
Whilst the original eight gods of the Egyptian pantheon could have arisen from the eight progenitors who emerged from the Flood (I Peter 3:20). 

Tradition has it that Lamech, who was blind, had accidentally killed Cain, and possibly that he had also killed Tubal-cain (Genesis 4:23): ‘I have killed a man for wounding me, a young man for injuring me’.

In the course of the centuries, the godly Seth-ite line became corrupted by Cain-ite influence (Genesis 6:1-2, 4): “When human beings began to increase in number on the earth and daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of humans were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose. …. The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of humans and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown”.
This highly controversial passage may also have added to it the element of demonic possession (or obsession), as in the case of the demon Asmodeus’s infatuation with the beautiful Sarah (Tobit 3:8). But (as it seems to me), the widespread interpretation of this passage, with fallen angels (i) being designated “the sons of God”, and (ii) procreating with “daughters of humans”, thereby producing the “Nephilim”, is metaphysically quite far-fetched.

The world by this time must somewhat have resembled our own, insofar as it was filled with wickedness, corruption and violence. Genesis 6:5: “The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time”.
Genesis 6:11: “Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence”.

Enter the great Noah, “a preacher of righteousness” (2 Peter 2:5).
Genesis 6:6-8: “The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. So the Lord said, ‘I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created—and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that move along the ground—for I regret that I have made them’. But Noah found favour in the eyes of the Lord”.

Noah was both spiritually just and physically pure. According to Genesis 6:9: “Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations”. The Hebrew word here apparently means “... without blemish as to breed or pedigree”. The explanation for this may be found in Tobit’s advice to his son, Tobias, regarding a right choice of spouse (Tobit 4:12):

‘Beware of all whoredom, my son, and chiefly take a wife of the seed of thy fathers, and take not a strange woman to wife, which is not of thy father’s tribe: for we are the children of the prophets, Noe [Noah], Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob: remember, my son, that our fathers from the beginning, even that they all married wives of their own kindred, and were blessed in their children, and their seed shall inherit the land’.

Noah, it seems, had not inter-married with the line of Cain.

Inevitably Noah, being righteous, was persecuted and had to flee for his life, he and his family. Josephus tells of it in Antiquities (I, 3, 1), when he writes that Noah had tried to turn the sinful people in his day from their gross misconduct: “… but seeing they did not yield to him, but, were slaves to their wicked pleasures, HE WAS AFRAID THEY WOULD KILL HIM, together with his wife and children, and those they had married; So HE DEPARTED OUT OF THAT LAND”.
Some suggest that Noah and his family may have fled to the land of (what we now know as) Egypt, away from (what we now know as) Palestine. If so, then this would be a nice parallel with the Holy Family’s having fled to there from Palestine to escape the wrath of a violent king (Matthew 2:13-15):

“When [the wise men] had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. ‘Get up’, he said, ‘take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him’. So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: ‘Out of Egypt I called my son’.”

Was the persecuting “Herod”, in the case of Noah, the all-dominating Lamech?

A possible further clue that Noah had, like Moses, to leave Egypt in order to rescue his people, may stem from the Egyptian tradition that the Flood was proclaimed to the world from Egypt. Moreover, the intentional representation of Moses in the Book of Exodus as “a new Noah” (e.g. the common tebah ark motif rescuing the hero from the water) may be a further indication.
Moses had, of course, led an Exodus out of Egypt.

Perhaps even Mount Sinai (Horeb), properly identified as Har Karkom near the Paran desert, may be common to both Noah and Moses.
Did Noah painstakingly, according to the Divine blueprint, build the Ark upon Mount Sinai, just as Moses would do similarly in the case of the Ark of the Covenant?
And is that the reason why Horeb was already known as “the mountain of God” (Exodus 3:1) when Moses first came into that region?
And does all of this explain why Har Karkom (Sinai) has been like “a pre-historic Lourdes” (professor Emmanuel Anati) even from Palaeolithic times, well before Moses, who belonged to the Middle Bronze I Age?
And does this new scenario serve to answer the following queries?

“Among the many unsolved problems concerning this holy mountain, one is likely to be the most challenging: Why this mountain? What did people find on this mountain which is not found elsewhere? Similar things may have attracted there the Palaeolithic and BAC [Bronze Age] tribes. Perhaps the material evidence has not yet been found or, if it has, it is not yet understood. After forty years from the first discoveries and after fourteen years of survey, we may not yet have discovered enough details to fully understand this high-place. The mountain is likely hiding still other messages”. (Professor E. Anati, Kar Karkom. The Mountain of God).

Professor Anati has had to suffer a certain amount of derision for his view that Har Karkom was the biblical Mountain of God: “May be you should look for Noah’s Ark next”, they said.
Perhaps his critics, in saying this, were closer to the truth than they could have realised!

Genesis Flood and the Geological Ages

To read the Genesis account of the Flood (toledôt of Noah and of his three sons) superficially, in a modern translation, and without due sensitivity to ancient thinking, is to concoct - as do Creationists - a global Flood, requiring a virtually super-human ship-building Noah and sons.
The same sort of ‘global’ language occurs in other parts of Scripture as well, but these - at least in the cases when they are more geographically specific - do not elicit the same global conclusions. For instance, probably no one presumes that the account of Pentecost in Acts 2, referring to representation “from every nation under heaven”, would include people from the southern hemisphere, for example, such as the aboriginal “nations”. For the text specifies from whence all of these people came (vv. 6-11):

“When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. Utterly amazed, they asked: ‘Aren’t all these who are speaking Galileans? Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from RomeCretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!’”

When we scrutinise this particular list of “nations”, we find that they basically belong to the riverine world of Genesis 2, Adam’s world, the region known today as “the Fertile Crescent”.
It is hardly the global world that we now inhabit!
And this micro-world of Acts 2 was, I believe, the same approximate world that was inundated by the Genesis Flood, “the world that then was” (2 Peter 3:6).
Thus my geographical model for the Noachic Flood would run a middle course between the two most frequently proposed models for the Flood: namely, a global Flood and one localised to Mesopotamia.
My version is that of a Deluge that was assuredly vast, but by no means global.

On some maps (and they tend to vary greatly), the geographical extent that I would accept for the Flood is the approximate region thought to have been inundated by the Great Tethys Sea. It is also the approximate region (again maps vary) inhabited by the Neanderthals.

There is a pressing need for a more meaningful and intelligible (than evolutionary-based) grasp of the Universe; of the Geological Ages; of the Stone Ages; and of the Archaeological Ages. The biblical record has already proven to be most helpful for the beginnings of a revision of the Stone Ages, and, even more so, at this stage, of the Archaeological Ages.
This will become apparent as this history progresses.
A revised Abram (Abraham), for instance, will be found to bring into nice convergence the late Stone Ages; the beginning of the Bronze Ages; the commencement of Egyptian dynastic history and its relationship to the Akkadian dynasty. A revised Joseph of Egypt, and Moses, will enable for a far better alignment of - {than according to the artificial Sothic (or Sirius)-based arrangement of Egyptian history} - the so-called Old and Middle Kingdoms of Egypt, these being tied to, respectively, at present, the Early and the Middle Bronze age.
And I hopefully expect that the biblical Noah and the Flood will provide the same service in relation to the excessively vast and unwieldy Geological Ages and the corresponding Ice Ages.
The Ice Ages have proven to be most difficult to accommodate.

The tendency of revision seems to be always to lean in the direction of shrinkage.

A step in the right direction, of a revised Geological and Ice Ages against the Noachic Flood - which is the scenario that I would envisage - is (I think) the following effort by New Zealander, Terry Lawrence (“Has Velikovsky Correctly Placed the Ice Age?” Chronology and Catastrophism Workshop, May 1988, Number 1, p. 41):

“Many times in Worlds in Collision and Earth in Upheaval Dr Velikovsky equates the beginning of the Pleistocene or ice age with the time of the Exodus, circa 1450 BC. On pages 114-126 of Earth in Upheaval he gives a graphic description of what he thinks happened when the ice age began. The description however sounds more like the Noachian Deluge than the Exodus. We can therefore expect Velikovsky to run into problems with his placement of the Noah … Flood and the events of that time. Presumably Velikovsky must place the Deluge in the era prior to the Pleistocene (Glacial Age). A check of the chart on p. l84 of Earth in Upheaval will show this period is known as the Tertiary or “Age of Mammals”. Under the conventional time scale it is allocated 70 million years and is followed by one million years of the ice age and then followed by 30,000 years of the Recent or Holocene Age. This system is greatly overstretched, Velikovsky claims, and does not allow for any great catastrophes.
In order to show that Velikovsky’s placement of the ice age is incorrect we must show that the conventional scheme is also wrong and also have some idea of the time-span Velikovsky allows for the period from the Deluge to the Exodus. The only clue he gives us is found on p. 55 of his article “Seismology, Catastrophe and Chronology” (Kronos VIII:4). Here he notes that Dr Schaeffer has discerned that in the 4th millennium BC the ancient Near East went through great paroxysms before the time of another disaster in the Early Bronze Age (3rd millennium). Velikovsky comments “Schaeffer like myself … arrived at the same number of disturbances … and the same relative dating”. Assuming from this that the disaster before the Early Bronze Age was the Deluge, and placing it in the 4th millennium at 3450 BC then we obtain a figure of 2000 years for the time Velikovsky would have placed between the Deluge and the Exodus.
Pick up a copy of Kummel’s History of the Earth and glance at pp.447-455 and you will see the fallacy of this time-gap. The maps on these pages clearly show that during the Tertiary Age Europe, North Africa and Asia Minor were in a state of complete ruin, being mostly under water. Note in particular the Great Tethys or Central Sea which stretches 9000 miles from Spain to India and is up to 2000 miles wide. On p.453 the map for the Oligocene subdivision of the Tertiary shows that the sea invasion of Europe plainly stops at the boundary of the area covered by the ice age in Scandinavia. This is curious because under the conventional scheme the ice age does not occur for another 23 million years. During the Eocene subdivision of the Tertiary the sea covered the south of England up to a point where the later ice age reached, supposedly 38 million years later. During the whole period of these disastrous sea invasions and large scale fresh water floodings the northern part of the British Isles along with Scandinavia was not touched. In North America it is a similar story for the Canadian Shield. While the rest of the continent was subject to sea incursions, rain storm flooding in the mid-west and volcanic eruptions in the Rockies and Central America all was tranquil in north-east Canada.
It is absolutely impossible that while the rest of the world was drowning, most of the British Isles, Scandinavia and Canada escaped. There can only be one solution, i.e. the ice age struck these lands at the same time as the Noachian Deluge. Conventional geologists have therefore reconstructed the ages of the past incorrectly by placing too much time between the end of the Tertiary and the ice age. If either follows immediately or happens at the same time as the subdivisions of the Tertiary i.e. the Eocene, Oligocene, Miocene and Pliocene periods are all contemporary with one another). Failing to grasp this, Velikovsky while at least cutting the time period down from millions of years to about 2000, has accordingly overrated the scale of the Exodus catastrophe”.
There is a slim possibility that Velikovsky might place the Flood at the time of the dinosaurs. This can easily be discounted. Stone Age Man could not possibly have survived in a world of flesh-eating dinosaurs like the 18 foot tall Tyrannosaurus Rex. Besides, in Kummel’s book on p. 37 we find a chart that clearly shows the dinosaurs drowned because of massive invasions of shallow seas upon the continents. The actual figures are 75% sea water drownings and 25% continental rain water and river delta drownings. For the Age of Mammals the figures are reversed: 20% are drowned by shallow sea invasions and 80% by lowland continental and upland fresh water. The book of Genesis makes it clear that the Deluge drownings were caused by forty days and nights of rainstorms. Once more this favours the Cenozoic era and not the Mesozoic or Dinosaurian era.
A possible new sequence of the geological ages might be:

Cenozoic
Holocene – Neolithic. Bronze, Iron
Pleistocene. Tertiary – Noachian Deluge – many giant forms of today’s mammals become extinct (cf. Genesis 6:4)
Palaeocene – period of change between dinosaurs and mammals
Mesozoic. Palaeozoic – Land and sea creatures of the Dinosaurian era. They are contemporary and not separated by hundreds of millions of years as under the conventional scheme. Mostly destroyed by sea wave invasions caused by comet strikes in the oceans”. [End of quote]

Whether or not Lawrence has his model exactly right, I believe that he is on the right track, at least, by his use of the Flood sequence as an aid towards bringing some degree of sensible manageability to the grossly inflated Geological (Ice) Ages.
The Eocene Sea, which professor Anati has found to have only just covered Har Karkom (Mount Sinai), ought to be considered as a hydrographical candidate for the Flood inundation, I suggest, along with the Great Tethys Sea as referred to by Lawrence.

Dr. John Osgood, who (to my knowledge) has not ventured into those murky Geological Ages, has undertaken an important revision of the Stone Ages in relation to the Flood, however, identifying the latter’s watery traces in the very regions where I would expect these to appear, in Iraq and the Middle East, Anatolia, Sinai and Egypt – all pointing to, for him, the great Genesis Flood.

Whereas conventionally-minded (often evolutionary-minded) geologists, palaeontologists, archaeologists and historians tend to adhere rigidly to an ‘Indian file’, or ‘chest-of-drawers’, kind of linear arrangement – with little or no overlap amidst their neatly filed compartments – revisionist scholars on the other hand, such as Dr. John Osgood, have found that such an arrangement does not always reflect the testimony of the received data, and hence can be quite artificial.
The sciences of physics, astronomy and cosmology could also be thrown in here.
I regard all of this as the result of a Kantian type approach to reality, whether consciously or subconsciously: a super-imposition upon nature, history, archaeology, metaphysics, and so on, of pre-conceived (a priori) mental constructs (laws, theories, mathematics and paradigms), rather than an objective study of reality as it is (Immanuel Kant’s Ding an sich).
For a proper explanation of this, I direct the serious reader to Dr. Gavin Ardley’s supreme book on the philosophy of science: Aquinas and Kant: the foundations of the modern sciences (1950). The common person, being more common-sensible apparently than many a would-be philosopher, rightly believes that our senses enable us to perceive and experience reality. However, according to Kant’s pessimistic epistemology (or theory of knowledge), the noumena, or the basic realities behind all sensory experience, are not knowable, cannot be perceived.
 
Now, speaking of common sense, I would suggest that there had to be more than a mere eight people on board Noah’s Ark. That the “eight people” mentioned in I Peter 3:20 refer to, as said earlier, the eight progenitors of the human race.
We all (including those others ensconced within the Ark) spring from those primeval eight.
This should be genetically demonstrable.
Creationists can do good work here. One of such attempts, Dr. Robert W. Carter’s article, “Adam, Eve and Noah vs Modern Genetics”, includes the following explanation:


The Flood and genetics


Like in the Creation story, there are only a few verses in the Flood account that help us with our model. But as seen before, these verses are profound. About 10 generations after Creation, a severe, short bottleneck occurred in the human population. From untold numbers of people, the entire world population was reduced to eight souls with only three reproducing couples.
So Noah, with his sons, his wife, and his sons’ wives, went into the ark because of the waters of the flood.Gen 7:7
Now the sons of Noah who went out of the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth… These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the whole earth was populated.Gen 9:18–19
We can draw many important deductions from these statements. For instance, based on Genesis 7 and 9, how many Y chromosomes were on the Ark? The answer: one. Yes, there were four men, but Noah gave his Y chromosome to each of his sons. Unless there was a mutation (entirely possible), each of the sons carried the exact same Y chromosome. We do not know how much mutation occurred prior to the flood. With the long life spans of the antediluvian patriarchs, it may be reasonable to assume little mutation had taken place, but all of Creation, including the human genome, had been cursed, so it may not be wise to conclude that there was no mutation prior to the Flood. The amount of mutation may be a moot point, however, for, if it occurred, the Flood should have wiped out most traces of it (all of it in the case of the Y chromosome).
How many mitochondrial DNA lineages were on the Ark? The answer: three. Yes, there were four women, but the Bible does not record Noah’s wife as having any children after the Flood (in this case, girl children). And notice the claim in Gen 9:19, “These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the whole earth was populated.” This is a strong indication that Noah’s wife did not contribute anything else to the world’s population. With no prohibition against sibling marriage, yet,4 one or more of the daughters-in-law may have been her daughter, but this does not change the fact that, at first glance, we expect a maximum of three mitochondrial lineages in the current world population. There is a chance that there will be less, if there was very little mutation before the Flood or if several of the daughters-in-law were closely related. At most, we do not expect more than four.
How many X chromosome lineages were on the Ark? That depends. If you count it all up, you get eight. If, by chance, Noah’s wife passed on the same X chromosome to each of her three sons (25% probability), then there were seven. If Noah had a daughter after the Flood (not expected, but possible), there could be as many as nine X chromosome lineages. Either way, this is a considerable amount of genetic material. And since X chromosomes recombine (in females), we are potentially looking at a huge amount of genetic diversity within the X chromosomes of the world.
Does this fit the evidence? Absolutely! It turns out that Y chromosomes are similar worldwide. According to the evolutionists, no “ancient” (i.e., highly mutated or highly divergent) Y chromosomes have been found.5 This serves as a bit of a puzzle to the evolutionist, and they have had to resort to calling for a higher “reproductive variance” among men than women, high rates of “gene conversion” in the Y chromosome, or perhaps a “selective sweep” that wiped out the other male lines.6 For the biblical model, it is a beautiful correlation and we can take it as is. ….”

Our common Noachic origins are also evidenced by the fact that virtually every major nation - and even many small ones - have a Flood legend, more or less like the original biblical account.
The great king Ashurbanipal could boast in ancient times (my emphasis):
‘I Ashurbanipal, within the palace, learned the wisdom of Nebo, the entire art of writing on clay tablets of every kind. I made myself master of the various kinds of writing … I read the beautiful clay tablets from Sumer and the Akkadian writing, which is hard to master. I had the joy of reading inscriptions on stone from the time before the flood.’
Considering that Mesopotamia (situated between the rivers Tigris and Euphrates) frequently experienced local flooding, Ashurbanipal presumably must have intended here not just a flood, but the Flood.
And here this great antiquarian-minded king also testifies of writing before the Flood.
Legend has Ashurbanipal’s grandfather, Sennacherib, king of Assyria, who campaigned in Urartu (see below), collecting and worshipping bitumen-covered wood from the Ark.

The Australian aboriginals, too, have their flood legends, with idiosyncratic tribal variations, but generally having the following points in common with the Genesis account:

·         The flood was sent to judge wickedness.
·         God sent the flood to drown all the people.
·         It began to rain.
·         All the land was covered.
·         A man and his wife in a boat with an animal.
·         A bird with a leaf in its mouth was the sign of dry land.
·         They landed on a mountain. All other people drowned.
·         There was a sacrifice of blood at the end of the flood.
 
I have often wondered if the famous Rainbow Serpent of aboriginal folklore, associated with the wet season of rains and flood, is simply a distant reminiscence of the Noachic rainbow covenant after the Flood (Genesis 9:13).

Noah’s Ark finally landed, not on Mt. Ararat, but “on the mountains of Ararat” (Genesis 8:4).
“Ararat” itself is a more modern term and the true rendering of the word should be “Urartu”, the ancient name for the region of eastern Kurdistan, north of Iraq.
Hence it is a complete waste of time, and sad in fact, for hopeful Ark-eologists to go fossicking about amongst boat-shaped geological features on icy Mount Ararat in search of Noah’s Ark.


Rabbinic commentators say that the olive branch that the dove brought to Noah was from the Mount of Olives. It is interesting to note that olive trees thrive only up to the elevation of the Mount of Olives (approximately 800 meters), which was a sign to Noah that the waters had not just receded, but had receded to a particular elevation. Until the Romans besieged the city of Jerusalem in 70 [AD] and cut down most of the trees, the entire mountain was covered with olive trees.


 
Part Two:

From the Sons of Noah to Ur of the Chaldees

 

“Now the whole world had one language and a common speech. As people moved eastward, they found a plain in Shinar and settled there. They said to each other, ‘Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly’. They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar.  Then they said, ‘Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a Tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth’.”

Genesis 11:1-4

 
 

Histories of the Sons of Noah

 

The fourth Genesis toledôt (“family history”) was written (owned) by the three sons of Noah:

 4
 Genesis 6:9b
 Genesis 10:1a
  Shem, Ham & Japheth 

 

This is the account of Shem, Ham and Japheth, Noah’s sons, who themselves had sons after the flood”.

This triple-authored history, which provides us with an eye-witness account of the great Flood, is followed by the famous Table of Nations (Genesis 10) and the incident of the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11): Shem’s toledôt.

 

 5
 Genesis 10:1b
 Genesis 11:10a
  Shem

 

By now, the three brothers must have gone their own separate ways.

 

But the repetition in the account of the Flood bespeaks their previous multiple authorship.

For example:

 

Genesis Chapter 7,

 

18: "And the waters prevailed, and were increased greatly upon the earth".

19: "And the waters prevailed exceedingly upon the earth".

20: "Fifteen cubits upwards did the waters prevail".

 

Also:

 

21: "And all flesh died that moved upon the face of the earth".

22: "All in whose nostrils was the breath of life and all that was in the dry land died".

23: "And every living substance was destroyed".

 

French physician, Jean Astruc (C17th AD), claimed to have discerned “three accounts” of the Flood story, instancing in support of his claim these repetitious passages. It is with Astruc that the documentary theory (JEDP) first began. He was quite correct about the number of sources, but had no apparent awareness about their true origins.

The documentists have, in fact, given considerable attention to the Flood narrative, thinking that the Hebrews would have borrowed it from the Babylonian mythology. Eugene H. Maly, for instance, in his article “Genesis” for The Jerome Biblical Commentary (1968), will accredit to the J (Yahwist) source (2:44): “The Sons of Noah (9:18-27)”.

(Jawist (or Yahwist, from Yahweh) - describes God as Yahweh, and is dated around 850 B.C.). And Maly will attribute to the P (Priestly) and J source (2:45): “The Peopling of the Earth (10:1-32)”.

(Priestly - this encompasses writings scattered from Gen 1 through the notice of Moses’ death at the end of Deuteronomy. It is supposedly dated around 500 B.C.).

 

Let us return to Noah again, for a moment. His other name is said to have been Menahem.

The apparent discrepancy in Gen. [5:] 29, where it is said that Lamech "called his name Noah, saying, This shall comfort us," is explained by the "Sefer ha-Yashar" (section "Bereshit," p. 5b, Leghorn, 1870), which says that while he was called in general "Noah," his father named him "Menahem" (= "the comforter")”. (http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/11571-noah)

 

It is generally agreed that 1656 years elapsed from the creation of Adam to the Flood.

I tend to follow Philip Mauro’s (following Martin Anstey’s) biblico-centric biblical chronology (The Wonders of Bible Chronology) as a handy “backbone”, though I do not consider it to be flawless. His date for the Flood, 2390 BC, will serve as an approximation.

 

Noah and the other survivors of the Flood would presumably (of necessity) have spent some period of time in the region where the Ark had landed. Arabic sources from the 10th century mention a village called Thamanin, built by Noah at the foot of Mount Çudi (Judi).

It is impossible in the present state of our knowledge to say any more about the duration of sojourn in this particular region.

Afterwards, did Noah and his sons, their wives and their children, remove to the “Shinar” region where there would later occur the Tower of Babel debacle as recorded by Shem?   

 

Ham’s ‘uncovering of his father’s nakedness’ (Genesis 9:22) is a euphemism for his having had sexual intercourse with Noah’s wife. This was forbidden by the Law of Moses, e.g. Leviticus 18:7, translated bluntly by NIV as: “Do not dishonor your father by having sexual relations with your mother. She is your mother; do not have relations with her”.

Possibly, though, this wife of Noah was not Ham’s actual mother, but his step-mother.

The "Sefer ha-Yashar" (l.c.) and Gen. R. (xxii. 4) both agree that Noah's wife was called Naamah. According to the latter, she was the sister of Tubal-cain (Gen. iv. 21); according to the former, she was a daughter of Enoch, and Noah married her when he was 498 years old. In the Book of Jubilees (Hebr. transl. by Rubin, iv. 46-47) Noah's wife is referred to as "Emẓara, daughter of Raḳi'el." Emẓara was his niece, and two years after their marriage bore him Shem”.


 

In biblical fashion Noah cursed, not Ham, but the offspring of this illicit union, Canaan (v. 25): ‘Cursed be Canaan! The lowest of slaves will he be to his brothers’.

 

Table of Nations and their Spread

 

All the nations of the world, from the greatest to the least, descended from the three sons of Noah, from Shem, Ham and Japheth.

Shem has listed these nations in what we now call Genesis 10. Much has been written about this “Table of Nations”.


 

Generally speaking, the Hamites are the most dispersed and diverse people, both ethnically and linguistically. They will be found, according to Genesis, in Asia Minor, Canaan, Egypt (North Africa), South Africa, and Mesopotamia.

 

Likewise, the Japethites represent the Indo-European peoples, that is, from Europe to India. This classification is usually referring to linguistic similarities rather than ethnic, although the latter is also a consideration. Looking at a relief map of the world, one can see that these people are often mountain people.

 

Finally, from a biblical point of view, the Semites are the center of God’s work. Semitic people come out of the desert. They are Assyrian, Babylonian, old South Arabians, and, of course, the descendants of Abraham. It is no coincidence that the three great monotheistic religions had their origin among Semitic people.

 

Anomalies arise, however. The Hittites, for instance, descended from the Hamitic Canaan (Genesis 10:15): “Canaan was the father of Sidon his firstborn, and of the Hittites …”, are later classified as an Indo-European people. “Scientists trace evolution of Indo-European languages to Hittites”:


  

Presumably, as the waters subsided after the Flood, individual clans would have reclaimed the best of the habitable lands of a world that had now, no doubt, been altered significantly due to the geo-tectonic upheavals caused by the mighty Deluge.

One of the arguments posed by Creationists against the notion of a non-global Flood - and it is quite a valid one - is that Noah could have, in such a case, moved elsewhere, rather than having to have gone to all of the trouble of building the Ark. The possibility needs to be considered, however (at least I think), that the antediluvian “world that then was” (2 Peter 3:6) was not structured the same as the post-diluvian world that later was. Noah may perhaps have been unable physically to escape from the confines of his world due to, say, a surrounding ‘Ocean’. Recall, for example, the ancient legends of an earth-encircling River Okeanos.

 

Previously I had suggested that “the sequence of Stone Ages, Palaeolithic to Chalcolithic, was both an antediluvian, and a post-diluvian, phenomenon”.

Lower Palaeolithic is conventionally and unrealistically (to say the least) dated 1.76 million to 100 thousand years ago.

But, in light of Dr. John Osgood’s “A Better Model for the Stone Age”, this inflated figure is in need of serious shrinkage. For Lower Palaeolithic conditions were part of the experience of the early post-Flood peoples - the Acheuleans being one set of these, according to Osgood - when the lands were still affected by left-over water:

 

A wet middle east and heavy strata build-up


 

The biblical model implies that there would have been much more water left over in land basins as a result of the great Flood than would necessarily be present today, and so we would look for evidence of large lake-like accumulations in such possible basin areas. The biblical model certainly does not insist on any particular weather conditions immediately after the Flood, but wet conditions would certainly be logical in God’s planning for the habitation of the post-Flood earth, and would be logical in terms of the necessary rapid build-up of plant and animal life again after the Flood. As a result of the Flood, there would have been much salt left on the land, so wet conditions would have caused a washing off of some of this salt from the land and a faster ability of non-salt-loving plants to grow adequately, allowing for quick afforestation, an abundance of plant life, and hence a multiplication of animal life after the great Flood. Wet conditions would have increased the breakdown of mud-brick buildings, increasing therefore the build-up of strata in tells during the early days in the Middle East and causing more rapid build-up in caves, particularly in dolomite and limestone caves.

There is strong evidence for a very wet climate in the Middle East and for left-over basins of water over many areas of the Middle East in the early days which the biblical model would allow to be called post-Flood, but which the evolutionary model would call the stone age.

 

Palestine in those early days showed evidence of great areas of water, particularly filling in the north of the Huleh Basin:

 

‘It is currently accepted that during the period of Acheulean occupation of the north-eastern tip of Upper Galilee, a large lake filled the entire Huleh Basin while the mountains were covered by oak forests incorporating several northern elements. such as Fagus. The surroundings were rich in various animals, including a number of large species. The Acheulean site was apparently located close to the ancient lake, in the vicinity of streams descending from the Hermon (Stekelis and Gilead, 1966; Nir and Bar-Yosef, 1976; Horowitz 1975-1977).’9

 

Also in south-central Sinai:

 

‘Strikingly thick accumulations of sediments occur in Wadi Feiran and its tributaries in south central Sinai (Fig. 1). Over the past three decades these have been the subject of discussion with reference to their origin (fluvial verses lacustrine) and their climatological and chronological significance. In this note we describe an in situ Upper Paleolithic site, the first known from south central Sinai, which places these deposits in a firmer chronological context of about 30,000 to 35,000 B.P. and lends support to previous climatological interpretations of a former wetter climate.’’10:185

 

And:

 

‘Nevertheless, the widespread occurrence of Upper Paleolithic sites throughout the central Negev and down to the very arid southern Sinai would suggest a regionally wet climate, which enabled the Upper Paleolithic people to exploit an area which today is hyper-arid.’10:189

Furthermore, in east Jordan:

 

‘Briefly, the stratification in the north, west, and south trenches reflects the existence of a Pleistocene pluvial lake that shrank until a widespread marsh formed during the Early Neolithic.’11:28

….

‘During the Late Acheulian period of the Late Pleistocene, the scene around Ain el-Assad was quite different: an immense lake, roughly five times the size of the present Dead Sea (Rollefson 1982; Garrard and Price 1977) stretched to the northern, eastern, and southern horizons. Once again, animals would have been attracted to the lakeshore, yielding opportunities for Neanderthal hunters to fulfill their needs.’11:33,34

 

Similarly, Alison Betts has suggested that in the Black Desert just close to the same area in eastern Jordan there was once lush growth and a large population of animals:

 

‘As far as hunting is concerned, the desert once supported large herds of game, particularly gazelle, and evidence for the wholesale exploitation of these herds is demonstrated by the complex chains of desert ‘kites’ lying across what were once probably migration routes.’12

 

Next, Dr. Osgood turns to Egypt:

 

In Egypt also, wet conditions prevailed:

 

‘Naqada I and II are very remote times, and it is now known that conditions in Egypt were then completely different from what they are today. At Armant, for instance, south of Luxor, large trees had been growing sparsely all over the low desert at a height of 20 or more feet above the present cultivation level and, therefore, probably about 40 feet above in pre-Dynastic times. The workmen told Mr. Myers that trees like this were to be found in every part of the Nile Valley. Some of these trees at any rate were earlier than either the Late or the Middle pre-Dynastic periods, for graves of these dates had been cut through their roots. Again, a small Wadi had been silted up and trees had been growing in it. This was all on the low desert, and similar wet conditions are found to have prevailed on the high.’13

 

The testimony seems uniform that in those early days, by whatever scheme they may be dated, conditions were wetter and large areas of water-filled geographical basins, a picture that is thoroughly consistent with the biblical model.

 

Such conditions, Osgood thinks, account for the widespread use of the hand-axe:

 

Wet conditions and afforestation may well be one of the explanations for the earliest type of culture found in many parts of the Middle East and Europe, that is the Acheulian, the most characteristic tool of which was the hand-axe. The need to clear land, to chop trees, and to build shelter from wet conditions, as well as to shape tools such as spears for hunting in that early survival culture, may well explain the ubiquity of the Acheulian hand-axe, a fairly basic tool. But then, the conditions also were very basic, and survival was the name of the game.

 

The most ancient sites of Jericho and Çatal Hüyük evidence of multiple rebuilding:

 

The wet conditions may also explain the very large number of stone-age, particularly Neolithic strata, in such places as Mersin, Catal Huyuk and Jericho, where the main building materials were sun-dried mud bricks. In north-eastern Iraq the Jarmo expedition found that the average expectation for a ‘casually built house with some dried mud bricks and mud finished roof’ was only 15 years.14 In much wetter conditions of earlier days the life of a building may well have been considerably shorter, even half that time, making rapid build up of strata with rebuilding of levels in tells a very highly likely proposition.

 

Even the layers at the Carmel Caves, Osgood suggests, may be explainable according to a Flood scenario:

 

Furthermore, the deep layers found in some of the caves, such as the Carmel Caves, which are dolomite, may well be explained by the wetter conditions which would give rise to the more rapid breakdown of rock from the roof. Such cave-ins, which were evident in some of the Carmel Caves, along with the increased trampling in of soil, dirt and mud as the people came home from hunting, would have led to a rapid build-up of strata in such caves. It is impossible at this point in time to give an accurate assessment of the time taken for the build-up of these strata. Long periods of time that have artificially been assigned to them simply cannot be sustained on any present evidence. For these reasons, the biblical model stands as a reasonably good scientific model on which to test the evidence. [End of Osgood’s article]

 

Thanks to Dr. Osgood’s significant re-setting of the Stone Ages, now in a Flood context, those embarking upon a revision of history ought now be able to stand on far firmer ground, and with a clearer outlook, for co-ordinating pre-dynastic Egypt, Palestine (e.g., early Jericho), Turkey (Çatal Huyuk), and indeed the early post-Flood world in general, with a relevant stratigraphy.

 

Language of Babel

 

This heading is not so much concerned about the language, or languages, spoken at ancient Babel, as about a re-consideration of the meaning of the words/phrases particularly of verse 1: “whole world”; “eastward”; “plain of Shinar”.   

Here, as in the Pentecost event of Acts 2, previously discussed, translations might superficially convey the impression of a global event, “whole world” (Genesis 11:1), to be compared with Acts 2:5’s “every nation under heaven”. A pairing of Babel with Pentecost is relevant insofar as the disastrous confusion of languages in the case of the former, owing to the sin of pride (Genesis 11:4, 7-9), is Divinely undone by the miraculous phenomenon of “tongues” at Pentecost (Acts 7:11): “… we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!”    

 

With the benefit of such a comparison it may be suggested that the confusion of languages was, just as was the Flood, only “local in geographic extent” (for quote see below).

The different and contemporaneous Sumerian and Akkadian languages may have been a result.

 

Rich Deem has written likewise of “The Genesis Flood Why the Bible Says It Must be Local”:

 

“Psalm 104 directly eliminates any possibility of the flood being global (see Psalm 104-9 - Does it refer to the Original Creation or the Flood?). In order to accept a global flood, you must reject Psalm 104 and the inerrancy of the Bible. If you like to solve mysteries on your own, you might want to read the flood account first and find the biblical basis for a local flood.

The Bible's other creation passages eliminate the possibility of a global flood


The concept of a global Genesis flood can be easily eliminated from a plain reading of Psalm 104,1 which is known as the "creation psalm." …. The verse that eliminates a global flood follows: "You set a boundary they [the waters] cannot cross; never again will they cover the earth." (Psalm 104:9)1 Obviously, if the waters never again covered the earth, then the flood must have been local. Psalm 104 is just one of several creation passages that indicate that God prevented the seas from covering the entire earth.2 An integration of all flood and creation passages clearly indicates that the Genesis flood was local in geographic extent”.

 

Now, turning to geographical considerations, “eastward” and “plain of Shinar”, there may be a pressing need to shift the conventional goal posts. And that is exactly what Anne Habermehl has done in her ground-breaking article, “Where in the World Is the Tower of Babel?” (https://answersingenesis.org/tower-of-babel/where-in-the-world-is-the-tower-of-babel/), there shifting the geographical focus for the Tower of Babel incident away from southern Iraq (ancient “Sumer”), the customary “Cradle of Civilisation”, to the Khabur region of NE Syria. According to this new view, the biblical “land of Shinar” to whose “plain” men migrated after the Flood (Genesis 11:2), and thought to indicate “Sumer”, is roughly to be identified, instead, as the region of Sinjar (the scene of much fighting in our era).

This is how Anne Habermehl has introduced (summarised) her article:

 

Abstract

 

The biblical story of the Tower of Babel is believed by many to be the record of a real historical event that took place after the worldwide Flood, at a time when the earth’s population still lived together in one place. The enduring archaeological question, therefore, is where the Tower of Babel was built. It is widely considered that Shinar, where the Bible says the Babel event took place, was a territory in south Mesopotamia; and that Babel was located at Babylon. However, an analysis of history, geography, and geology, shows that Shinar cannot have been in the south, but rather was a territory in what is northeastern Syria today; and that the remnants of the Tower must be located in the Upper Khabur River triangle, not far from Tell Brak, which is the missing city of Akkad.

 

An immediate point in Habermehl’s favour is that she has been able to, in her scholarly and well-researched article, provide a fairly compelling identification (namely, Tell Brak) for the lost city of Akkad (Accad), Nimrod’s city (Genesis 10:10), so famous in ancient times, but not identified even to this day.

Akkad is generally estimated to have been situated in the environs of modern Baghdad.

 

As to the word, “eastward”, one may have to ask, “eastward” from where?

Various translations of the word, the Hebrew miqqedem, are “from the east” or “in the east”. The Ark survivors were last heard of “on the mountains of Ararat [Urartu]”, which is already close to the eastern extremities of the ancient world. It is unlikely that preserved humanity travelled even further “eastwards” (or its variants) than this in search of fertile habitable land.

Hebrew miqqedem also has the meaning “of old [long ago”], which makes more sense to me.

Further, regarding the location of the Tower of Babel, the Septuagint (LXX) Isaiah provides a geographical clue which, whilst conforming with Habermehl’s location of biblical “Shinar”, would not, however, support a conventional location of the land as Sumer, nor anywhere further “eastward”. In Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers we read this intriguing information, regarding Isaiah 10:9: “Is not Calno [Calneh] as Carchemish? is not Hamath as Arpad? is not Samaria as Damascus?”
 
“…. Is not Calno as Carchemish?—The six names obviously pointed to more recent conquests in which Sargon and his predecessors had exulted. One after another they had fallen. Could Judah hope to escape? (1) Calno, the Calneh of Genesis 10:10, Amos 6:2. That prophet had held up its fate in vain as a warning to Samaria. …. The LXX. version, which instead of naming Carchemish, gives “Calanè, where the tower [ὁ πύργος] was built,” seems to imply a tradition identifying that city with the Tower of Babel of Genesis 11:4. (2) Carchemish. Few cities of the ancient world occupied a more prominent position than this. Its name has been explained as meaning the Tower of Chemosh, and so bears witness to the widespread cultus of the deity whom we meet with in Biblical history as the “abomination of the Moabites” (1 Kings 11:7)”.
 
Some have even associated the god Chemosh with Ham himself, the son of Noah.

This switches the land of the Tower of Babel away from Sumer to the vicinity of Carchemish.

The name, Carchemish, including apparently the meaning of “Tower”, may indicate that this is where the attempted building of the Tower of Babel had been undertaken.

It could not have been in the well-known Babylon of Sumer, which city was begun much later.

Any map of Mesopotamia will show that - whether one believes Noah’s Ark to have landed on Mt. Çudi (Judi) in Kurdistan, or Mt. Ararat - ancient Babylon is hundreds of kilometers directly south of both of these places. Various authors have pointed this out. “This somewhat inconvenient geographical fact (for those who believe that the people migrated eastward or westward) is downplayed by those who believe that the Tower was built at the city of Babylon, and requires inventing scenarios that move the people far enough south while still satisfying their perception of this Scripture”. (Anne Habermehl’s article)

 

Sadly, the location of other cities connected with Nimrod in this same Genesis verse (10:10): “The beginning of [Nimrod’s] kingdom was Babel and Erech and Accad and Calneh, in the land of Shinar”, is also a matter of dispute. Some translations even get rid of “Calneh” altogether, by substituting “all of these [i.e., Babel, Erech and Accad] in the land of Shinar”. Another point in Habermehl’s favour, I think, is that her choice of Sinjar (Shinjar) for “Shinar” is far more linguistically plausible than is “Sumer”.

Scholars and historians have been totally confounded by the abrupt rise of the Sumerian culture nearly 6,000 years ago in the Fertile Crescent of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. This “sudden civilisation” seemed to appear out of thin air and refused to conform to the popular historical theory of linear development in cultural evolution.

Historian Professor Charles Hapgood squarely faces the issue when he writes that “today we find primitive cultures co-existing with advanced modern society on all continents… We shall now assume that 20,000 years ago while paleolithic peoples held out in Europe, more advanced cultures existed elsewhere on earth.”

Likewise the rise of Sumeria has been a major puzzle.

Joseph Campbell in The Masks of God writes, “With stunning abruptness… there appears in this little Sumerian mud garden… the whole cultural syndrome that has since constituted the germinal unit of all high civilisations of the world.”

William Irwin Thompson puts it even more succinctly. “Sumer is a poor stoneless place for a neolithic culture to evolve from a peasant community into a full-blown civilisation,” he writes, “but it is a very good place to turn the plains and marshes into irrigated farmlands … In short, Sumer is an ideal place to locate a culture already having the technology necessary for urban life and irrigation agriculture.”

This would indicate that human settlement of Sumer, and the cities and culture that developed from this, had occurred somewhat later than was formerly believed.

 

There is to be considered the possibility that pre-Flood Cain-ites had settled there and that, after the Flood, when Sumer was re-settled, Cain-ite names were re-applied to the cities that now sprang up there. My earlier view had been, in line with others, that cities named after the Cain-ites (Enoch, Irad, Tubal-cain) were identifiable in the names of southern Mesopotamia cities. According to: http://xenohistorian.wordpress.com/2008/03/31/the-babylonian-connection-

 

“David Rohl has proposed that both Uruk and Ur were named after Enoch, because their actual Sumerian names were Unuk and Unuki, respectively. Rohl goes on to see a connection between Bad-tibira and Tubal-Cain, because Bad-tibira means “City of the Metal Worker.” Finally, Eridu, which archaeologists and Sumerian historians believe is the oldest city of all, could have been named after Irad (according to Rohl) or Jared (according to Zecharia Sitchin)”.

 

Cain himself, though, as traditions seem to indicate, settled on the edge of “Seth’s land”.

According to what we learned earlier, Cain had not moved far from the vicinity of the Garden.

 

As already touched upon, NE Syria is also more geographically proximate (than Sumer) for the descendants of Noah from our point of view (Habermehl is obviously a global Floodist), according to which Noah’s Ark landed upon the mountains of modern Kurdistan (ancient Urartu). It might be expected, then, that humankind would soon find its way into the fertile Khabur region. That this region qualifies as a “plain” is apparent from Habermehl’s description of it (she includes a photograph):

 

“It is difficult to tell from what we know of history exactly where the boundaries of the entire land of Shinar were; indeed, those boundaries may not even have remained precisely the same at different times. However, we will generally describe Shinar as a land including the territory that is located immediately south of the Turkish mountains between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. This area is almost perfectly flat as far as the eye can see (fig. 2). It surely qualifies as “a plain in the land of Shinar,” as Genesis calls it”.

 

There is yet another most useful upside to Habermehl’s reconstruction; one that she herself has pointed out, and it is not favourable to the documentary theory: “One result of “moving” Babel from south Mesopotamia to the north of Syria is that secular historians will no longer be able to claim that the building of the Tower was merely a story inspired by the ziggurat at Babylon (for example, Parrot 1955, p. 17)”.

In fact, with the early Genesis scene shifted right away from Babylonia, then those old arguments according to which the Book of Genesis (e.g., the Flood, as we read above) had borrowed from Mesopotamian lore will no longer carry any force.

It is well known where the ancient city of Babylon stood. But - and as Habermehl strongly - argues, Babylon and the “Babel” of Genesis 10:10 are not necessarily synonymous.

Habermehl herself does not actually identify the location of Babel. She presumes that it must lie at the approximate centre of the triangle of cities that she has associated with Genesis 10:10.

But might not the LXX be telling us, by substituting the name “Babylon” for “Carchemish”, that the impressive site of Carchemish (modern Jerablus) was itself a Babylon, a Babel? – perhaps in close association with Calneh – in the very region “where the Tower was built”?

 

One unusual French scholar, Fernand Crombette, whose unique and complicated method of translating ancient texts with the aid of Coptic has bemused many, had claimed that Carchemish was where Noah and his sons lived after the Flood, and that its modern name, Jerablus, actually translates as Naked Man, referring to the incident of the drunken Noah (Genesis 9:20-25). Given that the region of Carchemish may have been the suitable place for grape vines: “In Mesopotamia, grapevines could be nurtured only in the north, notably in the region of Carchemish” (P. King, Life in Biblical Israel, p. 98), then Crombette may have got this right. Northern Syria might have been, for this very reason, the first place of choice for migrations after the Flood waters had begun to subside. 

That does not necessitate, however, that all human groups, post-Flood, had converged upon the fertile “plain in the land of Shinar”.

 

Carchemish, once excavated by the famed adventurer, T. E. Lawrence (“Lawrence of Arabia”), but now currently situated on the boundaries of a war zone, awaits a fuller archaeological effort.  

Nicolò Marchetti of Bologna University, who leads the renewed investigations with a joint Italian-Turkish team beginning in 2011, says that, despite the city's historical significance, only 5 percent of the site has been excavated”.

I personally should be most interested to find whether further excavational work at the site of Jerablus (Carchemish), or its environs, might yield any evidence of the famous Tower of Babel.

 

Nimrod as an Akkadian

 

Dr. Douglas Petrovich’s “Identifying Nimrod of Genesis 10 with Sargon of Akkad by Exegetical and Archaeological Means” (http://www.academia.edu/2184113/_2013_Identify) appears to fit in well, at least chronologically, with my placement of the Akkadian dynasty. But I would now consider - thanks to Habermehl’s research - that Petrovich’s geography of Genesis 10:10’s “Erech, Babel and Akkad”, all still presumed to be located in ancient Sumer, stands in need of a geographical shift.

I had previously favoured David Rohl’s view (in The Lost Testament) that the Uruk I dynasty after the Mesopotamian flood (identified by Sir Leonard Woolley) was the dynasty of Cush and Nimrod, with the latter being the historical Enmerkar (‘Enmer the Hunter’).

And this may still apply as well, since the Akkadian dynasty was far reaching.

It needs to be said, though, that even the whole concept or “Uruk” may need to be reconsidered (and Habermehl has done just that), since, as according to Genesis 10:10, Uruk was “in Shinar”:

“The first centers of [Nimrod’s] kingdom were Babylon, Uruk, Akkad and Kalneh, in Shinar”.

And only after that (vv. 11-12): “From that land he went to Assyria, where he built Nineveh, Rehoboth Ir, Calah  and Resen, which is between Nineveh and Calah—which is the great city”.

 

Whilst Sargon was a real person, I would suggest that the Mesopotamians had borrowed this story of his infancy (dating much later than the similar Moses story) from the Book of Exodus (http://ancienthistory.about.com/od/nemonarchs/g/Sargon.htm):

 

“A story about Sargon’s youth sounds like the Moses infancy story. The baby Sargon, nestled in a reed basket sealed with bitumen, was placed in the Euphrates River. The basket floated until it was rescued by a gardener or date grower. In this capacity he worked for the king of Kish, Ur-Zababa until he rose in the ranks to become the king’s cupbearer. …”.

 

Moses seems to have had in mind the arrogance of the Babel-ians (Genesis 11:3-4):

They said to each other, ‘Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly’. They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar. Then they said, ‘Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth’,”

 

when he recorded of the “new king [Pharaoh] … in Egypt” (Exodus 1:8-11):

 

“‘Look’, he said to his people, ‘the Israelites have become far too numerous for us. Come, we must deal shrewdly with them or they will become even more numerous and, if war breaks out, will join our enemies, fight against us and leave the country’. So they put slave masters over them to oppress them with forced labor, and they built Pithom and Rameses as store cities for Pharaoh.”

Who may have been the equivalent of the Israelite slaves in the construction of Babel?

The Akkadian kings and the later potentates of Mesopotamia, such as Hammurabi of Babylon, were wont to speak condescendingly of the, presumably indigenous, “black-headed people” whom they governed.

 

The Catholic mystic, Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich, has written this of Nimrod and Babel (Life of Jesus Christ):

 

“One of the chief leaders in the Tower building was Nemrod [Nimrod]. He was afterward honored as a deity under the name of Belus. He was the founder of the race that honored Derketo and Semiramis as goddesses. He built Babylon out of the stones of the Tower, and Semiramis greatly embellished it. He also laid the foundation of Ninive [Nineveh], and built substructures of stones for tent dwellings. He was a great hunter and tyrant. At that period savage animals were very numerous, and they committed fearful ravages. The hunting expeditions fitted out against them were as grand as military expeditions. They who slew these wild animals, were honored as gods. Nemrod also drove men together and subdued them. He practiced idolatry, he was full of cruelty and witchcraft, and he had many descendants. He lived to be about two hundred and seventy years old. He was of sallow complexion, and from early youth he had led a wild life. He was an instrument of Satan and very much given to star worship. Of the numerous figures and pictures that he traced in the planets and constel­lations, and according to which he prophesied con­cerning the different nations and countries, he sought to reproduce representations, which he set up as gods. The Egyptians owe their Sphinx to him, as also their many-armed and many-headed idols. For seventy years, Nemrod busied himself with the histories of these idols, with ceremonial details relative to their worship and the sacrifices to be offered them, also with the forming of the pagan priesthood. By his dia­bolical wisdom and power, he had subjected the races that he led to the building of the Tower. When the confusion of tongues arose, many of those tribes broke away from him, and the wildest of them followed Mesraim into Egypt. Nemrod built Babylon, subjected the country around, and laid the foundation of the Babylonian Empire. Among his numerous children were Ninus and Derketo. The last-mentioned was honored as a goddess”.

 

Dr. D. Livingston has, for his part, considered that Nimrod was the basis for the semi-legendary hero, Gilgamesh, historically also the fifth king of Uruk (“Who Was Nimrod?”).

It needs to be noted that the famous Epic of Gilgamesh, considered by documentists to have been the inspiration for some of the early Book of Genesis, exhibits late traces. For instance, Dr. Nili Samet has, in her article, “The Gilgamesh Epic and the Book of Qohelet: A New Look” (https://www.academia.edu/19814432/The_Gilgamesh_), drawn some very solid parallels between Gilgamesh and king Solomon’s Ecclesiastes (or Qoheleth). Though she, also, regards the Epic of Gilgamesh as being the influence upon the Hebrew book.

 

Dr. D. Livingston has written more realistically in favour of Hebrew influence upon the pagans (op. cit.):

 

“Besides the stories of the Creation and Flood in the Bible, there ought to be similar stories on clay tablets found in the cultures near and around the true believers. These tablets may have a reaction, or twisted version, in their accounts of the Creation and Flood. In the post-Flood genealogical records of Genesis 10, we note that the sons of Ham were: Cush, Mizraim, Put and Canaan. Mizraim became the Egyptians. No one is sure where Put went to live. And it is obvious who the Canaanites were. Cush lived in the "land of Shinar," which most scholars consider to be Sumer. …. The sons of Shem -- the Semites -- were also mixed, to some extent, with the Sumerians.

We suggest that Sumerian Kish, the first city established in Mesopotamia after the Flood, took its name from the man known in the Bible as Cush. The first kingdom established after the Flood was Kish, and the name "Kish" appears often on clay tablets. The early post-Flood Sumerian king lists (not found in the Bible) say that "kingship descended from heaven to Kish" after the Flood. (The Hebrew name "Cush" was much later moved to present-day Ethiopia as migrations took place from Mesopotamia to other places.)

….

In Genesis 10:8-11 we learn that "Nimrod" established a kingdom. Therefore, one would expect to find also, in the literature of the ancient Near East, a person who was a type, or example, for other people to follow. And there was. It is a well-known tale, common in Sumerian literature, of a man who fits the description. In addition to the Sumerians, the Babylonians wrote about this person; the Assyrians likewise; and the Hittites. Even in Palestine, tablets have been found with this man's name on them. He was obviously the most popular hero in the Ancient Near East.

 

The Gilgamesh Epic

The person we are referring to, found in extra-Biblical literature, was Gilgamesh. The first clay tablets naming him were found among the ruins of the temple library of the god Nabu (Biblical Nebo) and the palace library of Ashurbanipal in Nineveh. Many others have been found since in a number of excavations. The author of the best treatise on the Gilgamesh Epic says,
 
“…. his arrogance, ruthlessness and depravity were a subject of grave concern for the citizens of Uruk (his kingdom). They complained to the great god Anu, and Anu instructed the goddess Aruru to create another wild ox, a double of Gilgamesh, who would challenge him and distract his mind from the warrior's daughter and the noblemen's spouse, whom it appears he would not leave in peace (Roux 1966: 114)”.

….



How does Gilgamesh compare with "Nimrod?" Josephus says of Nimrod,

 

“Now it was Nimrod who excited them to such an affront and contempt of God. He was the grandson of Ham, the son of Noah -- a bold man, and of great strength of hand. He persuaded them not to ascribe it to God, as if it were through his means they were happy, but to believe that it was their own courage which procured that happiness. He also gradually changed the government into tyranny -- seeing no other way of turning men from the fear of God, but to bring them into a constant dependence upon his own power. He also said he would be revenged on God, if he should have a mind to drown the world again; for that he would build a tower too high for the waters to be able to reach! and that he would avenge himself on God for destroying their forefathers (Ant. 1: iv: 2)”

 

What Josephus says here is precisely what is found in the Gilgamesh epics. Gilgamesh set up tyranny, he opposed YHVH and did his utmost to get people to forsake Him.

Two of the premiere commentators on the Bible in Hebrew has this to say about Genesis 10:9,

 

“Nimrod was mighty in hunting, and that in opposition to YHVH; not "before YHVH" in the sense of according to the will and purpose of YHVH, still less, . . . in a simply superlative sense . . . The name itself, "Nimrod" from marad, "we will revolt," points to some violent resistance to God . . . Nimrod as a mighty hunter founded a powerful kingdom; and the founding of this kingdom is shown by the verb with vav consecutive, to have been the consequence or result of his strength in hunting, so that hunting was intimately connected with the establishing of the kingdom. Hence, if the expression "a mighty hunter" relates primarily to hunting in the literal sense, we must add to the literal meaning the figurative signification of a "hunter of men" (a trapper of men by stratagem and force); Nimrod the hunter became a tyrant, a powerful hunter of men (Keil and Delitzsch 1975: 165).

"in the face of YHVH can only mean "in defiance of YHVH," as Josephus and the Targums understand it (op. cit.: 166).

And the proverb must have arisen when other daring and rebellious men followed in Nimrod's footsteps and must have originated with those who saw in such conduct an act of rebellion against the God of salvation, in other words, with the possessors of the divine promise of grace (loc. cit.)”.

 

The Akkadian dynasty is conventionally dated from c. 2335 BC to c. 2150 BC.

Whilst this is a bit too early if Sargon of Akkad (died c. 2285 BC) were Nimrod, since Abram - thought to have been a late contemporary of Nimrod - was born close to 2000 BC, it is still much closer to reality - as we are going to find - than is the chronology of early Egypt and of some of the Mesopotamian dynasties. 

Conventionally, the Akkadian dynasty almost overlapped with the similarly famous Ur III dynasty (c. 2110 BC to c. 2004 BC). Interestingly, Shulgi, a most significant king of Ur III, deified while he yet lived, claimed Gilgamesh as his brother. If this were literally true, then it would necessitate much time revision of Gilgamesh (c. 2700 BC) and Shulgi (c. 2030 to 1980).

Gilgamesh and Shulgi appear to have had similar characters, or constitutions. For example: (http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17511321.2010.486590):

 

“Gilgamesh's heroic striving to become like a god may end up validating his position of leadership, but it fails to earn him the immortality he seeks. He transcends the limitations of the common man, yet he is not and cannot become a god. Not unlike modern sports heroes, however, his exploits become a cause for celebration and inspiration.

Gilgamesh certainly had his ancient fans; the greatest, in fact, may have been another athletic sovereign who ruled some 700 years later named Shulgi. Hymns proclaiming the Sumerian King Shulgi's sporting heroism were composed and sung during his lifetime. In one, he claims to have run from Nippur to Ur, a distance of nearly 100 miles, in one day …”.

 

One may be struck by the apparently Chinese-like names of some of the Ur III dynasty kings, such as Shulgi, Shu-Sin. Interestingly (http://www.ancient.eu/sumer/): The Sumerians called themselves “the black headed people” and their land, in cuneiform script, was simply “the land” or “the land of the black headed people”.

Further on, I shall be arguing also for a linguistic connection between Sumerian and Chinese.

 

Archaeology of Dispersion

 

Dr. Donovan Courville, in his praiseworthy effort to bring Egypt and Mesopotamia into line historically and archaeologically with the biblical data (The Exodus Problem and its Ramifications, 1971), would come to the conclusion that the distinctive Jemdet Nasr (near Kish) period was archaeological evidence for the Dispersion after Babel.


 

“Courville was quite confident that the Dispersion from Babel took place in the archaeological period known as “Jemdet Nasr.” …. The strata of Jemdet Nasr in Mesopotamia correlate to Early Bronze 1 strata in the Holy Land. It is believed that this period shows that an “intensive migration” took place from Mesopotamia into Syria, Palestine, Egypt, Asia Minor and into the Aegean islands. Reference is made to W. F. Albright who had spoken of this period as a “transitional period” corresponding to Megiddo 19 and the lowest level of Byblos. …. It is further noted that this was a “narrow period” in Mesopotamian history, and that Jemdet Nasr had a “brief existence” and was “short.” …. The Jemdet Nasr period represents the beginnings of dynastic history, and thus represents a trend toward nationalism”.

 

Following Dr. Osgood, I shall be suggesting a different context for the Jemdet Nasr phase, somewhat later than Babel.

 

My own view is that the Akkadian dynasty, is represented by the sophisticated Halaf culture, currently dated to approximately (a massive) four millennia before Sargon of Akkad.

As we are now going to find, the conventional picture regarding the archaeology for the famous Akkadian and Ur III dynasties is hopelessly inadequate. Here is what I have written on this:

 

““Uncertainty in identifying exclusively Akkadian pottery has made it impossible to reconstruct Akkadian settlement patterns with any confidence” (Nissen 1993: 100)”.

Most interesting, now, that Anne Habermehl’s geographical re-location of the Babel incident:

… finds a most significant and sophisticated ancient culture to accompany it: namely, Halaf.

….

The long Akkadian empire phase of history … so admired by subsequent rulers and generations, is remarkably lacking in archaeological data. I noted this [before] ….

 

“The Akkadian kings were extensive builders, so why, then, so few traces of their work?

 

Not to mention, where is their capital city of Akkad?

 

The Ur III founder, Ur-Nammu, built a wall at Ur. Not a trace remains”.

 

…. here I want to highlight the enormity of the problem.

Archaeologists have actually failed to identify a specific pottery for the Akkadian era!

This is, of course, quite understandable given that they (indeed, we) have been expecting to discover the heart of the Akkadian kingdom in Sumer, or Lower Mesopotamia.

We read of this incredible situation of a missing culture in the following account by Dr. R. Matthews, from his book, The Archaeology of Mesopotamia: Theories and Approaches (https://books.google.com.au/books?id=9ZrjLyrPipsC&pg=PA152&lpg=PA152&dq=uncer):

 

“The problems of fitting material cultural assemblages, especially pottery, into historical sequences are epitomised in the ongoing debate over what, if anything, characterises Akkadian material culture in Lower Mesopotamia (Gibson and McMahon 1995; Nissen 1993; J. G. Westenholz 1998). Uncertainty in identifying exclusively Akkadian pottery has made it impossible to reconstruct Akkadian settlement patterns with any confidence (Nissen 1993: 100). The bleakest view has been put thus: ‘If we didn’t know from the texts that the Akkad empire really existed, we would not be able to postulate it from the changes in settlement patterns, nor … from the evolution of material culture’ (Liverani 1993: 7-8). The inference is either that we are failing to isolate and identify the specifics of Akkadian material culture, or that a political entity apparently so large and sophisticated as the Akkadian empire can rise and pass without making a notable impact on settlement patterns or any aspect of material culture”.

 

Obviously, that “a political entity apparently so large and sophisticated as the Akkadian empire can rise and pass without making a notable impact on … any aspect of material culture” is quite absurd. The truth of the matter is that a whole imperial culture has been almost totally lost because - just as in the case of so much Egyptian culture, and in its relation to the Bible - historians and archaeologists are forever looking in the wrong geographical place at the wrong chronological time.

 

It is my view that, regarding the Akkadian empire (and following Habermehl), one needs to look substantially towards Syria and the Mosul region, rather than to “Lower Mesopotamia”. And that one needs to fuse the Halaf culture with the Akkadian one. The most important contribution by Anne Habermehl has opened up a completely new vista for the central Akkadian empire, and for the biblical events associated with it. The potentate Nimrod, one might now expect, had begun his empire building, not in Sumer, but in the Sinjar region, and had then moved on to northern Assyria. Thus Genesis 10:10-11: “The beginning of [Nimrod’s] kingdom was Babel and Erech and Accad and Calneh, in the land of Shinar. From that land he went forth into Assyria, where he built Nineveh, Rehoboth-Ir, Calah and Resen, which is between Nineveh and Calah—which is the great city”.

 

And these are precisely the regions where we find that the spectacular Halaf culture arose and chiefly developed: NE Syria and the Mosul region of Assyria.

 

Understandably once again, in a conventional context, with the Halaf cultural phase dated to c. 6100-5100 BC, there can be no question of meeting these dates with the Akkadian empire of the late C3rd millennium BC. That is where Dr. Osgood’s “A Better Model for the Stone Age” (http://creation.com/a-better-model-for-the-stone-age) becomes so vital, with its revising of Halaf down to the Late Chalcolithic period in Palestine, to the time of Abram (Abraham):

 

“…. In 1982, under the title 'A Four-Stage Sequence for the Levantine Neolithic', Andrew M.T. Moore presented evidence to show that the fourth stage of the Syrian Neolithic was in fact usurped by the Halaf Chalcolithic culture of Northern Mesopotamia, and that this particular Chalcolithic culture was contemporary with the Neolithic IV of Palestine and Lebanon.5:25 ....

….

This was very significant, especially as the phase of Halaf culture so embodied was a late phase of the Halaf Chalcolithic culture of Mesopotamia, implying some degree of contemporaneity of the earlier part of Chalcolithic Mesopotamia with the early part of the Neolithic of Palestine, Lebanon and Syria ….

This finding was not a theory but a fact, slowly and very cautiously realized, but devastating in its effect upon the presently held developmental history of the ancient world. This being the case, and bearing in mind the impossibility of absolute dating by any scientific means despite the claims to the contrary, the door is opened very wide for the possible acceptance of the complete contemporaneity of the whole of the Chalcolithic of Mesopotamia with the whole of the Neolithic and Chalcolithic of Palestine. (The last period of the Chalcolithic of Palestine is seen to be contemporary with the last Chalcolithic period of Mesopotamia.)”

Dr. Osgood himself, however, regards the Halaf people as the biblical “Aramites” [Aramaeans]. (A Better Model for the Stone Age Part Two”: http://creation.com/a-better-model-for-the-stone-age-part-2).

Since the Aramaeans, though, tended to be a wandering nomadic people (Deuteronomy 26:5), I would not expect their existence to be reflected in a culture as sophisticated as Halaf. Though they themselves may have absorbed some of it. My preference, therefore, is for Halaf to represent the Akkadians, especially as Halaf was the dominant culture when Osgood’s Jemdat Nasr pertaining to the Elamite Chedorlaomer, arose.

 

This is how Dr. Osgood sees the spread of the Halaf culture:

 

“Now if we date Babel to approximately 2,200 B.C. (as reasoned by implication from Noah's Flood 3) and if Abraham came from Mesopotamia (the region of Aram) approximately 1875 B.C., then we would expect that there is archaeological evidence that a people who can fit the description generally of the Aramites should be found well established in this area .... What in fact do we find? Taking the former supposition of the Jemdat Nasr culture being identified with the biblical story of Genesis 14 and the Elamite Chedarloamer,4 we would expect to find some evidence in Aram or northern Mesopotamia of Jemdat Nasr influence, but this would only be the latest of cultural influences in this region superseding and dominant on other cultures.

 

The dominant culture that had been in this area prior to the Jemdat Nasr period was a culture that is known to the archaeologist as the Halaf culture, named after Tell Halaf where it was first identified. One of the best summaries of our present knowledge of the Halafian culture is found in the publication, 'The Hilly Flanks'5. It seems clear from the present state of knowledge that the Halaf culture was a fairly extensive culture, but it was mostly dominant in the area that we recognise as Aram Naharaim.

 

It is found in the following regions. First, its main base in earliest distribution seems to have been the Mosul region. From there it later spread to the Sinjar region to the west, further westward in the Khabur head-waters, further west again to the Balikh River system, and then into the middle Euphrates valley. It also spread a little north of these areas. It influenced areas west of the Middle Euphrates valley and a few sites east of the Tigris River, but as a general statement, in its fully spread condition, the Halaf culture dominated Aram Naharaim ….

 

The site of Arpachiyah just west of Nineveh across the Tigris River appears to have been the longest occupied site and perhaps the original settlement of the Halaf people. This and Tepe Gawra were important early Halaf towns.

 

The settlement of the Halaf people at these cities continued for some considerable time, finally to be replaced by the Al Ubaid people from southern Mesopotamia. When Mallowan excavated the site of Tell Arpachiyah, he found that the top five levels belonged to the Al Ubaid period. The fifth level down had some admixture of Halaf material within it. He says:

 

‘The more spacious rooms of T.T.5 indicate that it is the work of Tell Halaf builders; that the two stocks did not live together in harmony is shown by the complete change of material in T.T.l-4, where all traces of the older elements had vanished. Nor did any of the burials suggest an overlap between graves of the A 'Ubaid and Tell Halaf period; on the contrary, there was evidence that in the Al 'Ubaid cemetery grave- diggers of the Al 'Ubaid period had deliberately destroyed Tell Halaf house remains.’6

 

He further comments the following:

 

‘It is more than probable that the Tell Halaf peoples abandoned the site on the arrival of the newcomers from Babylonia; and with the disappearance of the old element prosperity the site rapidly declined; for, although the newcomers were apparently strong enough to eject the older inhabitants, yet they appear to have been a poor community, already degenerate; their houses were poorly built and meanly planned, their streets no longer cobbled as in the Tell Halaf period and the general appearance of their settlement dirty and poverty stricken in comparison with the cleaner buildings of the healthier northern peoples who were their predecessors.’7

 

He further says:

 

‘The invaders had evidently made a wholesale destruction of all standing buildings converted some of them into a cemetery.’8

 

It is clear from the discussion of Patty Jo Watson9 that the later periods of the Halaf people were found in the other regions, particularly in a westward direction across the whole area of Aram Naharaim, namely the Sinjar region, the Khabur head-waters, the Balikh River system and the middle Euphrates”. [End of Osgood’s article]

 

Dr. Osgood had estimated the Halaf culture as having spread from east (Assyria) to the west: “First, its main base in earliest distribution seems to have been the Mosul region. From there it later spread to the Sinjar region to the west, further westward in the Khabur head-waters, further west again to the Balikh River system …”. Most likely, it was the other way around, with Nimrod (= Sargon of Akkad/Halaf culture) firstly having established his kingdom in the “Sinjar region”, biblical “Shinar” (Genesis 10:10): “The first centers of his kingdom were Babylon, Uruk, Akkad and Kalneh, in Shinar. From that land he went to Assyria, where he built Nineveh, Rehoboth Ir, Calah and Resen, which is between Nineveh and Calah—which is the great city”.

 

Andrew Moore had, as we read before, argued for a contemporaneity of the Chacolithic phase of Halaf culture with the Neolithic IV of Palestine and Lebanon ….

Archaeologically, we are now on the eve of the city building phase (inspired by Nimrod?) that will be a feature of Syro-Palestine’s Early Bronze Age. Presumably the Canaanites were heavily involved in all of this work (Genesis 10:18): “… the Canaanite clans scattered and the borders of Canaan reached from Sidon toward Gerar as far as Gaza, and then toward Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah and Zeboyim, as far as Lasha”.

 

Ham himself, though, son of Noah and father of Canaan, gave his name to the land of Egypt (e.g., Psalm 78:51): “He struck down all the firstborn of Egypt, the firstfruits of manhood in the tents of Ham” (http://www.topix.com/forum/afam/T2OTBS4EEA84MJ67P/p2):

 

“According to the Bible the ancient Egyptians were descended from Ham through the line of Mizraim. Ham had four sons: Cush, Mizraim, Phut, and Canaan (Genesis 10:6). The name "Mizraim" is the original name given for Egypt in the Hebrew Old Testament. Many Bibles will have a footnote next to the name "Mizraim" explaining that it means "Egypt." The name "Egypt" itself actually comes to us from the Greeks who gave the Land that name (i.e. "Aegyptos" from the Greek). In addition to the name "Mizraim," the ancient Egyptians also referred to their land as "Kemet" which means "Land of the Blacks." Western historians, however, say that the word "Kemet" refers to the color of the soil of the land rather than its people. But, the word "Kemet" is actually an ethnic term being a derivative of the word "Khem" (Cham or Ham) which means "burnt" or "black." Ham, who was one of the three sons of Noah and the direct ancestor of the Egyptians, was black”.

 

Similarly, Ham’s son, Cush (Genesis 10:6), is considered to be the father of the Cushite Ethiopians, who were (are) black.

 

Ham’s brother, Japheth, became the god-Father of the Indo-European peoples such as the Greeks, who would identify him as Iapetos, the Titan, and the Indians, who called him Prajapti, “Father Japheth”.

 

Regarding Shem, I follow the Jewish tradition that Shem was the great Melchizedek - which view is chronologically acceptable. Genesis 10:10-11: “Two years after the flood, when Shem was 100 years old, he became the father of Arphaxad. And after he became the father of Arphaxad, Shem lived 500 years [long enough to have been able to meet Abram] and had other sons and daughters”.

 

“Ur of the Chaldees”

 

The ancient site of Arpachiyah reminds one of the name, “Arphaxad”, which name is, in turn, like “Ur of the Chaldees”, the original home of Abraham (Genesis 11:31): “Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, the wife of his son Abram, and together they set out from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to Canaan. But when they came to Harran, they settled there”.

Abram was born in c. 2038 BC, just 2 years after the death of Noah (2040).

The young Abram is said to have suffered persecution by Nimrod.


At a young age, Abraham recognizes God and starts worshiping Him. He confronts Nimrod and tells him face-to-face to cease his idolatry, whereupon Nimrod orders him burned at the stake. In some versions, Nimrod has his subjects gather wood for four whole years, so as to burn Abraham in the biggest bonfire the world had ever seen. Yet when the fire is lit, Abraham walks out unscathed”.

 

Whilst some would try to look for Abram’s birthplace elsewhere than Sumer, it would seem to be more consistent with biblical interpretation to identify “Chaldees” with that land, given that king Nebuchednezzar ‘the Great’, who ruled Babylon there, was king of “the Chaldeans” (e.g. Jeremiah 35:11).  

 

Dr. John Osgood has, rightly I think, identified the ancient Al Ubaid culture of Mesopotamia with that of the Chaldeans (A Better Model for the Stone Age Part Two”):

 

1.    Arphaxad - Al Ubaid, the Early Chaldees


 

…. Abraham left Ur of the Chaldees to eventually travel to the land of Canaan.

Now Ur of the Chaldees, that is, the southern Ur found in the region south of the Euphrates River, has been excavated by Woolley. Woolley found that the earliest layers in Ur were built by the Al Ubaid people. (Al Ubaid is the early pottery culture of this region.)

Now if the Al Ubaid people built Ur, then Ur would be an Al Ubaid city originally, and as it was known as Ur of the Chaldees, this allows us to equate the Chaldees with the Al Ubaid people. This fits what we know of the Chaldean people. Certainly, it was in that region of the world that the later Chaldeans were known to live. It is also clear that this area had an influence on the north by the naming of such cities as Harran associated with the same religions that were known in the region of Ur of the Chaldees.

It is certain that Joan Oates has shown the contemporaneity of northern Halaf and southern Ubaid, a fact that bears well with the Table of Nations in Genesis 10.14

The Al Ubaid culture of Southern Mesopotamia was centred around the cities of Ur and Eridu, and its earliest manisfestation, the Hajj Muhammad pottery, appears to be the first culture on the soil of this area of southern Iraq:

‘At all sites so far investigated in the South the Ubaid rests directly on virgin soil, and there seems little doubt that the people who bore this culture were the first settlers on the alluvium of whom we have any trace.’15

From this region at a later epoch came the now famous Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon, the Chaldean.

Perkins discusses the Ubaid culture, showing firstly a southern and a northern group, each having two phases. She insists the southern two phases are ‘one fabric throughout’16 and after considerable discussion shows the southern and northern cultures to be definitely connected.

‘That connections exist between the north and south is indisputable.’17

 

And professor Gunnar Heinsohn (Uni. of Bremen) made the following intriguing connection of the Sumerians with the Chaldeans (“The Restoration of Ancient History"):

 

“Though the ancient Greeks freely admitted that their science teachers were Chaldaeans (from Southern Mesopotamia/Babylonia), they never gave any hint that they trailed their inspirers by one-and-a-half millennia. They rather gave the impression that Chaldaean knowledge was obtainable by travelling Greek students. Today, we are taught that there were no Chaldaean teachers to speak of. This supposedly most learned nation of mankind, did not leave us bricks or potsherds, not to mention written treatises.

....

Nevertheless, researchers before 1868 - when Jules Oppert created the term Sumerian - had called proto-Chaldaean that today is called Sumerian. Up to the end of the 19th century, art historians labeled as Chaldaean artifacts which today are called Sumerian artifacts. At the turn of the century, major European museums underwent a relabeling procedure from Chaldaean to Sumerian on their exhibition pieces from Southern Mesopotamia”.


Further, Emmet Sweeney has written in support of “Gunnar Heinsohn’s Mesopotamian Historiography” (SIS Chronology and Catastrophism Workshop, No. 2, 1987, pp. 20-21):


“The Chaldaeans, according to Assyrian sources from the first millennium, occupied 900 cities, 88 of which were walled. Many of these were presumably located in Lower Mesopotamia, where the Assyrians regularly located the Kaldu, yet of the 900 cities not a trace, not a single brick, or inscription, has been discovered.

On the other hand, a whole civilisation (Sumerian), unknown to the ancients, but which left an abundance of records and remains, has been discovered in exactly the same area.
... Concomitant with the loss of the Chaldaean cities was the loss of the Chaldaean language. Yet against this painful loss was the great gain of the Sumerian tongue, previously unknown”.

 

Linguist Charles J. Ball, in his book Chinese and Sumerian (London: Oxford University Press, 1913), painstakingly connected hundreds of Chinese words to the ancient Sumerian language of Mesopotamia, thought to be humanity’s original language.


 

Hence I have written:

 

“As there appears to be a very close connection between the Chinese language and that of the Sumerians – whom I previously identified, following professor Gunnar Heinsohn, with the ancient Chaldeans – then what may have been the origins of the Chinese?  

…. 

According to conclusions reached previously:

 

1.      the Sumerians may have been the famed Chaldeans (professor Heinsohn’s view); and

2.      the ‘Ubaid civilisation may archaeologically represent this culture (Dr. Osgood’s view).

 

These interesting conclusions, when combined with two further ones, that:

 

  1. the Sumerian language has close affinities with Chinese; and that
  2. the Chinese, the biblical Sinites (Genesis 10:17), were similar to the Chaldeans,

 

may lead us to the very origins of the Chinese people and how far back is to be dated their actual beginnings.

The key biblical text for this will be Genesis 10:15, 17, 19: “Canaan was the father of …the Hittites … Sinites …. Later the Canaanite clans scattered …”.

….

There is increasing evidence of the connection between Biblical Genesis (Ch. 1-11) and the origin of Chinese Civilization. In Genesis 10 we have the Table of Nations, that is, the descendants of Noah’s three sons Shem, Ham and Japheth. Ham is regarded as the father of the Mongoloid and Negroid races because he generated Canaan whose two sons Heth (Hittites/Cathey) and Sin (Sinite/China) who are presumed to be the progenitors of the Mongoloid stock.

 

“The name Sin appears frequently in the Chinese language, and the city of Xian, a provincial capital in western China, was known as Sianfu in the nineteenth century, meaning “Father Sin.” Some scholars have suggested that the Sin referred to here may have been Fu Xi, the legendary first king of China, who began his reign in 2852 B.C. Later, when the first Chinese kingdom broke up in the first millennium B.C., a state named Qin (also spelled Tsin or Ch’in), arose near Xian; the Qin rulers reunited the land in the third century B.C., and the whole land became known as China, named after Qin. Thus the name “Sin” came to us in a roundabout fashion, altered over the ages to become “China.” The ancient name also appeared in its original form in the 1960s and 70s when news reports told about the “Sino-Soviet” border dispute.”

(see http://xenohistorian.faithweb.com/A Biblical Interpretation of World History)

 

“Most likely the Chinese Civilization began in the area of the former Chinese capital Shensi or Siang-fu (Father Sin) also called Hang’an and today called Xi’an meaning city of “Everlasting Peace”. This is the place where the Silk Road began and served as the first capital of the unified empire. “One ancient Chinese classic called the “Hihking” tells the story of Fuhi, whom the Chinese consider to be the father of their civilization. This history records that Fuhi, his wife, three sons, and three daughters escaped the great flood. He and his family were the only people left alive on earth. After the great flood they repopulated the world. An ancient temple in China has a wall painting that shows Fuhi’s boat in the raging waters. Dolphins are swimming around the boat and a dove with an olive branch in its beak is flying toward it.” (Webpage: Evidence-the Great Flood)

 

“There are also cultural similarities between the Chinese and Chaldeans which suggest their origin. Like the Chaldeans, the Chinese had astronomical knowledge and belief in astrology, used same of methods of measurement, the cycle of sixty and decimal system. They believed in interrelation and correspondence of five elements, the five colors, the harmony of numbers and a multitude of other customs that the Chaldeans had. All of this cannot be mere coincidence.” (Webpage: Archeology, The Bible and the Post-Flood Origins of Chinese History/ article by Roy L. Hales)”

 

Along similar lines we read in the article, “The Table of Nations”, at:


 

“…. The vast aggregate of peoples who are generally classified as Mongoloid, who settled the Far East, have been a question as to where they fall into the Table of Nations. The evidence shows they are Hamitic, even though some have incorrectly reasoned that the Chinese were of Japhetic stock, and the Japanese were either Japhetic or Semitic. There are two names which provide clues. Two of Canaan’s sons, Heth (Hittites) and Sin (Sinites), are presumed to be the progenitors of Chinese and Mongoloid stock. The Hittites were known as the Hatti or Chatti. In Egyptian monuments the Hittite peoples were depicted with prominent noses, full lips, high check-bones, hairless faces, varying skin color from brown to yellowish and reddish, straight black hair and dark brown eyes.

The term Hittite in Cuneiform (the earliest form of writing invented by the Sumerians) appears as Khittae* representing a once powerful nation from the Far East known as the Khitai, and has been preserved through the centuries in the more familiar term, Cathay. The Cathay were Mongoloids, considered a part of early Chinese stock. There are links between the known Hittites and Cathay, for example, their modes of dress, their shoes with turned-up toes, their manner of doing their hair in a pigtail, and so forth. Representations show them to have possessed high cheekbones, and craniologists have observed that they had common characteristics of Mongoloids.

…. Sin (or Seni), a brother of Heth, has many occurrences in variant forms in the Far East. There is one significant feature concerning the likely mode of origin of Chinese civilization. The place most closely associated by the Chinese themselves with the origin of their civilization is the capital of Shensi, namely, Siang-fu (Father Sin). Siang-fu appears in Assyrian records as Sianu. Today, Siang-fu can be loosely translated, “Peace to the Western Capital of China”. The Chinese have a tradition that their first king, Fu-hi or Fohi (Chinese Noah), made his appearance on the Mountains of Chin, was surrounded by a rainbow after the world had been covered with water, and [sacrificed] animals to God (corresponding to the Genesis record). Sin himself was the third generation from Noah, a circumstance which would provide the right time interval for the formation of early Chinese culture”.

  

Emmet Sweeney has added a little more to this:


 

…. Velikovsky associated the Hittites with the Chaldaeans (see Ramses II and His Time {1978}). Briefly, it should be mentioned that Sumerian royal titles, such as Gal-Lugal, were always used by the Hittite monarchs, and that the Hittite pantheon and mythology was entirely Sumerian. Indeed, the close links between the Hittites and Sumerians were not lost on scholars, and have been frequently commented upon. Khattili, the original “Hittite” language, is agglutinative, like Sumerian; but whether it is closely related is another question. Sumerian kings had strong links with Anatolia, and we find the term khatti (as in Tukim-khatti-migrisha) used as an element in Sumerian royal names. Finally, it must be remembered that the Chaldaeans were equally associated with Anatolia and southern Mesopotamia. We have, for example, classical references to the Chaldaei of Anatolia, and the fact is that the people of “Urartu”, who waged war against the Assyrians in the 8th century, called themselves Chaldi (children of Khaldis): Urartu, or Ararat, is an Assyrian term. …”.

 

If the Chinese people did indeed originate from Sin, a son of Canaan, a Hamite, then this people cannot pre-date c. 2000 BC.

 

The language of the Australian aborigines is considered to have affinities with agglutinative ancient languages, including Sumerian (http://www.hungarianhistory.com/lib/cser.pdf):

 

“Hungarian language belongs to the family of agglutinative languages. Officially it is a member of the Finno-Ugric language family. Structurally similar – although in a very distant relationship with it – are the Turkish, the Dravidian groups of languages, the Japanese and the Korean in the Far-East and the Basque in Europe. A large portion of ancient languages were agglutinative in their nature, such like the Sumerian, Pelagic, Etruscan, as well as aboriginal languages on the American and Australian continents”.

 

And they were physically like the Ubaid-ians (http://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&rct=j):

 

“According to many experts, the Al-Ubaid people were ancestral to the Sumerians, or at least, to their culture. The Al-Ubaid skulls show a chaemaerrhine index with a mean value of 49.2. In other words, they had very broad noses. The skulls had both subnasal and alveolar prognathism, or fullness of the lower and upper lips. The average linear projection was 8 mm. for the skulls. Their heads were long and narrow.

Buxton and Rice found that of 26 Sumerian crania 17 were Australoid, five Austrics and four Armenoid. According to Penniman who studied skulls from Kish and other Sumerian sites, these three: the Australoid (Eurafrican), Austric and Armenoid were the "racial" types associated with the Sumerians. Here is Penniman's description of the Austric type found at Sumer:

"These people are of medium stature, with complexion and hair like those of the Eurafrican, to which race they are allied, dark eyes, and oval faces. They have small ill-filled dolichocephalic skulls, with browridges poorly developed or absent, bulging occiputs, orbits usually horizontal ellipses, broad noses, rather feeble jaws, and slight sinewy bodies."


Both the Australoid and Austric type are found in India, where the former is known as Dravidian in its less extreme variety. Like all the different populations of India, both Dravidian and Austric are long-headed like most of the skulls at Sumer”.

 

Moreover, some of the early Australian aboriginal rock art resembled that of Al Ubaid.

I find it fascinating that Ian Wilson, renowned Turin Shroud expert, has discerned likenesses between the finest early aboriginal art (‘the Bradshaws’) in the Kimberley region of NW Australia and aspects of the early Mesopotamian culture, known as ‘Ubaid.






Part Three:
From beginning of the Hebrews to Abraham



































 
"So Abram went, as the Lord had told him; and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he set out from Haran. He took his wife Sarai, his nephew Lot, all the possessions they had accumulated and the people they had acquired in Haran, and they set out for the land of Canaan, and they arrived there".



Genesis 12:4-5

 
"The Earth Was Divided"



The nation of the Hebrews is generally considered to have begun with Eber.




Eber

"The eponymous ancestor of the Hebrews; grandson of Arphaxad and great-grandson of Shem; father of Joktan, the ancestor of the Arabs, and of Peleg, among whose progeny, in the fifth generation, was Abram (Gen. x. 22, 25-30; xi. 18-26).

The word "Eber" signifies "the region beyond." Of the nine words in Genesis that designate Shem's descendants, at least two, "Arphaxad" and "Serug" (Gen. xi. 10, 21), are identical with the names of districts: the former indicating the district of Arrapachitis on the upper Zab, the latter the place where Abu Zaid of "Saruj," the hero of Ḥariri's "Maḳamat," had his home. The conclusion is therefore warranted that the term "Eber" originally designated a district.

The use of "Eber" as a "nomen appellativum" is common; it denotes originally "that which is beyond." This explains the fact that, in the genealogy of the Semites, Abraham and, especially, Israel are called descendants of "Eber"; for if "Eber" had been originally the name of a person, it would be strange that Abraham should have been so closely linked with him, since Eber was not his immediate ancestor, but one six times removed. It is because "Eber" was originally the name of a region that it took so important a place in the genealogical tree.

"Eber" designates the region occupied longest and most continuously by the peoples that traced their descent from Shem through Arphaxad. This is apparent in the words, "And ships shall come from the coast of Chittim [Kition, on the island of Cyprus], and shall afflict Asshur, and shall afflict Eber" (Num. xxiv. 24). Here "Eber" designates a country in the neighborhood of Assyria, and to a certain extent forming a part of it—the country beyond the Euphrates. The importance of that river for anterior Asia may serve to explain the fact that the country beyond the Euphrates was designated κατ' ἐξοχὴν as the "region beyond."

The Babylonian name corresponding to the Hebrew "'Eber ha-Nahar" is "'Ebir Nari" (comp. Winckler, "Gesch. Israel's," i. 223, note 1). It occurs in an inscription of Assur-bel-kala (Hommel, "Ancient Hebrew Tradition," p. 195, line 5) about 1100 B.C. In I Kings v. 4 (A. V. iv. 24) "'Eber ha-Nahar" is descriptive of the limits of Solomon's kingdom. …".



Some think to link the name Eber also with Ebrium, a significant king of Ebla. For example ("A Letter to the Readers: [Discoveries at Ebla]", The Biblical Archaeologist, Vol. 40, No. 1 (Mar., 1977):




"One of the most striking correspondences is between the name of the great king of Ebla, Ebrium, which is semantically and linguistically equivalent to the name Eber in Genesis 10:26 (and other places), who is one of the ancestors of Abram (= Abraham); the name Eber gives rise to the gentilic form Ibri (= Hebrew, the general term for Abraham and his descendants). The correlation is intriguing, although there is no evidence from the tablets linking the two persons or, to be sure, from the Bible".



Genesis 10:25: "Two sons were born to Eber: One was named Peleg, because in his time the earth was divided; his brother was named Joktan".

Commentators can be similarly ‘divided’ as to just what this verse is referring.

Some of these, again taking that Hebrew phrase, ha aretz (הָאָ֔רֶץ), to mean "the earth" in a global sense, think that this may be a reference to the breaking up of the earth into continents.

Thus we read at (http://web.ccbce.com/multimedia/BLB/faq/nbi/751.html): "Others feel this hints at the theory of continental drift. There is the possibility that the Bible teaches the earth was one land mass before the Flood. Then God said, 'Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together in one place, and let the dry land appear;' and it was so (Genesis 1:9)".



When we discussed Babel, though, we found the same Hebrew phrase was used (Genesis 11:1), and there made the observation that perhaps Babel was "only "local in geographic extent"." And the same may well apply to the earth’s being "divided", which could again refer to Babel. According to the article above that mentioned continental drift:



"Some see [Genesis 10:25] as referring to the division into the different languages at the tower of Babel. The note on Eber's son Peleg. . . seems to pinpoint the Babel experience. The verb palag is used in the Old Testament to describe division into languages. So the Babel event occurred five generations after the Flood (Allen P. Ross in The Bible Knowledge Commentary, Editors John Walvoord and Roy Zuck, Wheaton, Illinois: Victor Books, 1985, p. 44)".



Indeed, the Douay version Psalm 54:10 translates the verb palag in this very Babel-ian fashion:

"Cast down, O Lord, and divide their tongues; for I have seen iniquity and contradiction in the city".



Humankind had begun to disperse both eastwards and westwards, at first having to negotiate the watery conditions that were the left-overs from the great Noachic Flood.

Some of these peoples have been classified as the seemingly primitive Palaeolithic man.

We have already considered the Acheuleans and shall be saying more about them here.

Dr. John Osgood, tying in these earliest Stone Age peoples with the biblical model, has sensibly urged for the adoption of a non-linear, more horizontal approach ("A Better Model for the Stone Age"):




  1. New regional models for the stone age


  2. Palestine

    The following cultures are recognised for the stone age of Palestine,

    1. The Lower Paleolithic - Acheulean.

    2. The Middle Paleolithic - Mousterian.

    3. The Upper Paleolithic - Aurignacian.

    4. The Epi Paleolithic, sometimes called Mesolithic.

      1. Kebaran culture

      2. Natufian culture

    5. The Neolithic.

      1. Neolithic (1) or Pre Pottery Neolithic - A (PPNA)

      2. Neolithic (2) or Pre Pottery Neolithic - B (PPNB)

      3. Neolithic (3) or Pottery Neolithic - A (PNA)

      4. Neolithic (4) or Pottery Neolithic - B (PNB)

    6. The Chalcolithic.

      1. Wadi Rabah culture

      2. Esdraelon culture

      3. Ghassulian culture


      Here rejected are the long time periods assigned to these cultures, but let us look further at them:

      Acheulean

      The characteristic feature of this culture was, of course, the large hand axe prominent in it. Comment has already been made about the possible relationship between the virgin forests, an early spreading people, and the necessity to use hand-axes in much of their culture. The widespread common relationship of these tools in Europe, Asia and Northern Africa certainly is not inconsistent with the biblical model of the recent origin of the spread of people from the Middle East into diverse places having initially similar cultures.

      There does seem to be a definite stratigraphic relationship between the so-called Paleolithic strata - Acheulian, Mousterian and Aurignacian in ascending order. This, however, does not indicate that they were cultures that succeeded one another all over the country, but the principle of mushrooming may legitimately be investigated here as in the Mesopotamian Chalcolithic. In other words, the superposition of one stratum on the other may only be a measurement of the cultures in one dimension. It fails to come to terms with the possible horizontal contemporaneity of at least the last two of these cultures, the Mousterian and the Aurignacian.

      The Aurignacian seems to have at least a superficial relationship to the later Kabaran culture. In the caves of Mount Carmel, the Kebaran and the Aurignacian seem to be geographically related.15 This possible relationship is worthy of further investigation. Thus when we get to the Epipaleolithic or Mesolithic we find a horizontal relationship at least a possibility. Different geographical areas are indicated on the whole for these two cultures:

      ‘The Kebarans were based predominantly in the coastal plain making seasonal penetrations into the mountainous areas to supplement their subsistence.’16

      And further:

      ‘When Natufian sites are plotted on a soil map of Palestine they are seen to coincide with the distribution of the Terra Rossa and the isohytes of 800 to 400 mm …. These settlements were base camps where remnants of structures, heavy grinding tools, burials and numerous sickle blades are found.’16

      Kebaran - Natufian.

      Kebaran culture seems to have been a less vigorous culture than Natufian and may have been overwhelmed by the latter.

      Neolithic.

      Neolithic (1) or Pre Pottery Neolithic A of Palestine appears to have been very much the same as the Mesolithic Natufian culture. This is apparent at Jericho from Kenyon’ excavations.

      Chalcolithic

      A case has already been made for the Ghassul culture to have been Amorite (see ‘The Times of Abraham’, this volume). Furthermore, it may well have been in Canaan during the Late Neolithic, as suggested by North (Jordan I),8
      One thing is clear from the biblical model; all the Stone Age inhabitants of Palestine, unless they happened to be transient cultures passing through to other lands, should be grouped under the label ‘Canaanite’ according to the biblical tradition of Genesis 10.

      A further suggested identification is here made, that is, to equate the most dominant archaeological culture in Palestine of this era, namely, Natufian - PPNA-PPNB (suggestion of continuity after Moore5:16-23), with the Bible’ most widespread southern groups - the Hivites (see Genesis 36:2,20; 14:6 Horites = Hivites; also later in Palestine, Genesis 34:2).

      PNA appears to be from the north and may indicate a Hittite influence (Genesis 15:20 and 25:9), or the same may be speculated of Proto-Urban Jericho (equivalent to Chalcolithic - see North8) who had rock cut tombs.17:273
      It is, however, freely admitted that the last two attempted reconciliations are tenuous and speculative for the most part, but worth investigating.

      PNA appears to have arrived from the north; as did Proto-Urban Jericho.

      We have then several major influxes or migratory waves:-

    7. Acheulean

    8. Natufian

    9. PNA

    10. Proto-Urban

    11. Ghassul





All are considered to be Canaanite …. For this period the Bible allows from Babel to Abraham (in Canaan), that is, from 2,200 B.C. to 1870 B.C. or 330 years (see ‘The Times of Abraham’, this volume).
….
An overlap of several of these phases is strongly suggested. As Kenyon has stated:

‘In trying to fit into place the cultures these communities represent, we should learn a lesson from the progress of research in European prehistory. Earlier European scholars tried to place each culture observed into a regular sequence. Now it is recognised that many cultures represent regional developments, and several may have existed side by side. The older sequence-method tended to produce very inflated chronologies, which have had to be considerably reduced now that the picture has become more coherent. This we should bear in mind in trying to piece together the jigsaw puzzle which our present state of knowledge in Palestine represents, and in fact some of the new pieces of the jigsaw which almost every year emerge from the ground do suggest that the whole picture will eventually portray a number of groups of people living side by side each with their own distinctive culture, but with just enough links with other groups to suggest contemporaneity.’17:69,70

….

The Model: A Preliminary Hypothesis

From the dispersion of Babel into the virgin forested lands of Palestine came the families of Canaan - Genesis 10:15-19. The initial number of families is unknown, but they are represented culturally by the Palestinian Acheulean artifacts.

Their culture was consciously adapted to their new environment of heavily forested country and wet climate with large lakes in land basins, much of the water being left-over from the great Flood. The wet climate would have produced heavy sedimentation of the open land and friable conditions in many caves, which nonetheless were good protection from the climate.

From the Acheulian background two different developments came - the Mousterian and Aurignacian of Palestine. At Carmel the Mousterian shelters suffered collapse, possibly from earthquake,15:176 ending Mousterian habitation in them.

Geographically at least, the Aurignacian appears to have given rise to Kebaran culture.

The Natufian appears to have been invasive, probably from the north, but possibly having a memory of a riverine background:

‘All that may be said at present is that the Natufian settlers came from an Alluvial environment and brought with them a tradition of building in clay or pise.’18

Moore affirms that Natufian to PPNA then PPNB formed one cultural continuity.
A new invasion from the north came with the PNA culture, continuous with PNB.

But against the biblical model, this also must have been a Canaanite culture,5:23 as was all before it.

Proto-Urban possibly followed, contemporary with Ghassulian culture (North8) and possibly had a relationship with the Esdraelon culture of the North Palestine area. But with it came rock-hewn tomb burials, suggesting a possible connection with the Hittites of Genesis 23:9.

We seem to be on surer ground when identifying Ghassul with the Amorites (see ‘The Times of Abraham’, this volume), a wave of Canaanites which came down through southern Syria. They were perhaps related to the defunct Hassuna culture driven out by Halafian expansion, which enveloped Hassuna and Syria, and more particularly, Aram-Naharaim. [End of Osgood’s article]


In western Europe, so-called Upper Palaeolithic can be represented by the Magdalenian culture (conventionally dated to 17,000 - 12,000 years ago), a culture far more sophisticated than the evolutionary estimates would allow for it. Consider, for instance, this sensational realisation:





"…. The painters of Lascaux were astronomers! Cro-Magnon men painted a zodiac on the walls of the cave, which showed the formation of the sky in the Magdalenian era, 17,000 years ago [sic]. This discovery of ancient astronomy, if confirmed, could change our understanding of pre-historic art and also of the people who painted the pictures. Research conducted and revealed in this article by independent prehistoric-astronomer, Chantal Jegues-Wolkiewiez could revolutionize presently held concepts of prehistoric man's knowledge of astronomy.

At the center of the controversy is Lascaux cave. A natural rock formation in the Dordogne region of southwest France that existed for 17,000 years before four teenage boys accidentally discovered it in l940. Since that time the paintings found in the majestic Hall of Bulls in the cave are considered to be one of the highest achievements of humanity and have astounded and mystified both art historians and prehistoric archeologists.



THE FIRST ZODIAC?



In November 2000 Chantal Jegues-Wolkiewiez presented a paper at the International Symposium of Prehistoric Art in Italy. The paper was entitled, Lascaux, the Magdalenians View of the Sky. In it, paleo-astronomer, Jegues-Wolkiewiez, states that the cave paintings were records of the zodiac constellations, fixed stars and the solstice points. She confirmed her thesis by showing that all the constellations of the zodiac except Aquarius and part of Pisces are represented by the animals in their natural state of that time. The precision of the respective orientations as well as the presence of the figure of the setting Sun demonstrates that Cro-Magnon men were remarkable observers of the sky.

This announcement that Paleolithic men were great astronomers as well as extraordinary artists was revolutionary. The idea that they marked the zodiac belt as a band of sky that holds twelve constellations dancing in an eternal circle following the path of the Sun and that they painted these calculations on rock puts our understanding of the history of astronomy in a radically new light. In effect this says that in far-off time men represented the actual constellations by drawing/tracing them on the pictures of certain animals particularly the bull. If this is true then they preceded the Babylonian astronomers by 10,000 years. These were surprising statements ...".



What, now, about the important Egypt at this pre-dynastic time?

Dr John Osgood again (op. cit.):



  1. Egypt


  2. ‘Prehistoric’ cultures of Egypt are:-

    1. Paleolithic

    2. Neolithic

    3. Chalcolithic

    4. Naqada I (Amratian)

    5. Naqada II (Gerzean)


    6. A case has already been made for a wet early Egypt, with wetter conditions thus over the whole of Africa, bringing greater flood and silt deposits into the Nile Valley, which buried Paleolithic artifacts in deep silt - all an illusion of a long time period.

      The Bible makes it clear that Egyptian culture arose from the family of Mizraim and his sons (Genesis 10:13-14):-

      Ludim
      Anamim
      Lehabim
      Naphtuhim
      Pathrusim
      Casluhim - from whom came the Philistines
      Caphtorim - from whom came the Philistines also.

      Egypt thus was from its very beginnings a tribal nation, suggesting multiple dynasts right from the start. The Pathrusim are remembered in southern Pathros, while the Caphtorim appear to have settled in the northern coastland areas (see ‘The Times of Abraham’, this volume). The name Lehabim is said by some to be the origin of the name of Libya. If that be so, his descendants will have settled in the west.

      The Egyptian language itself is considered to have had a common ancestor with the Semitic languages, and not to have been derived from it.19:193

      This is, of course, close to the biblical model.

      Egypt was a corridor for the movement of people into Africa after the crisis of Babel. This multitude of cultures should be reflected in the earliest times, is dated by the biblical model to approximately fifty years after Babel at approximately 2150 B.C., and later. On the evolutionary chronology this period would most likely be called Paleolithic.
      ….
      Clarke says:

      ‘Between the close of the Pleistocene and the introduction of domestication, somewhere between about five thousand and three thousand two hundred B.C., an extremely interesting situation existed in the Nile Valley. We find here a mosaic of cultural traditions which preserved their individuality in the face of the opportunity for interaction and free exchange of ideas19:169(emphasis ours)

      Egypt was early recognised as two nations - lower (north) and upper (south) Egypt. Upper Egypt was known as Paphros, perhaps a derivative from Mizraim’ son Pathrusim. The dominant northern name appears to have been Caphtorim.

      Remains of farming/pottery-making communities belonging to those early days have been found in Egypt. These were the Neolithic communities. Three important ones are here mentioned. In the north 30 miles north-west of Cairo was Merimda - Beni Salama … a village community dwelling in reed huts. They stored grain in straw and clay silos and appear to have had goats, sheep, pigs and cattle.

      This appears to be culturally distinct from Neolithic Fayuma at Birket Karun further south …. These people were subsistence farmers who grew emmer wheat and flax on the shores of the lake. Yet further south was the Tasian/Badarian culture on the eastern bank of the Nile, exhibiting some of the finest pottery work ever produced in the Nile Valley.

      Contemporaneity of these three cultures is a reasonable proposition and on the biblical chronology would perhaps be dated at around 2100 B.C.-1950 B.C.

      Clarke indicated a direct transition from Neolithic to Chalcolithic : Following this Neolithic ‘period’ we talk of the pre-Dynastic period or Chalcolithic, which is divided into two stages/cultures:-

    7. Naqada I or Amratian (from El Amra in the South ….)

    8. Naqada II or Gerzean (from Gerza in the North ….)





These and the preceding Badarian have been found in a stratified context indicating a local sequence.20:391 This does not, however, rule out spatial contemporaneity ….
The supersedure of Gerzean culture seems to indicate a pre-Dynastic Northern dominance.21 It would be against this that the South fought in the wars that finally led to unification and the Dynastic history of Egypt, firstly under Scorpion then under Narmer, and then under Menes/Hor-aha. Narmer was apparently late Gerzean - Chalcolithic, and was contemporary with Arad I,22 or the end of Ghassul IV in Palestine, the end of which has before been dated at around 1870 B.C. during the days of Abraham. [End of Osgood’s article]

Abram, who became Abraham



The most famous of the early Hebrews - and indeed one of the Old Testament’s very greatest - was Abram, who became Abraham (Genesis 17:5), "the father of many nations".

"Abraham’s place in the Bible’s portrait gallery is altogether unique and unapproachable. He stands out as a landmark in the spiritual history of the world. Chosen of God to become the father of a new spiritual race, the file leader of a mighty host, the revelation of God found in him one of its most important epochs".





Abram and his family had left Ur of the Chaldees bound for Haran (Harran).

Then Abram, 75 years old, his wife Sarai (later Sarah), and his nephew Lot, departed Haran for the Promised Land of Canaan upon the death of Abram’s father, Terah, aged 205.

This occurred c. 1960 BC.

Abram and Sarai, destined for many adventures, may have been picked up in Hindu mythology.

http://www.topix.com/forum/religion/hindu/TJ28O6M0R0RN5OH3A Jesuit missionaries, according to Gene Matlock (with reference to Godfrey Higgins’ Anacalypsis, Vol. I, p. 387), were the first to suggest an identity between Abraham and his wife Sarah [Sarai] of the Hebrew Scriptures, on the one hand, and Brahma and his wife Saraisvasti of Hinduism, on the other.

Here are some of Matlock’s perceived similarities, in which some of the biblical locations have been appropriated to an Indian setting (Apr 21, 2008):



"…. There are certain striking similarities between the Hindu god Brahma and his consort Saraisvati, and the Jewish Abraham and Sarai, that are more than mere coincidences. Although in all of India there is only one temple dedicated to Brahma, this cult is the third largest Hindu sect. …. In Hindu mythology, Sarai-Svati is Brahma's sister. The bible gives two stories of Abraham. In this first version, Abraham told Pharaoh that he was lying when he introduced Sarai as his sister. In the second version, he also told the king of Gerar that Sarai was really his sister. However, when the king scolded him for lying, Abraham said that Sarai was in reality both his wife and his sister! "...and yet indeed she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother; and she became my wife." (Genesis 20:12.)

But the anomalies don't end here. In India, a tributary of the river Saraisvati is Ghaggar. Another tributary of the same river is Hakra. According to Jewish traditions, Hagar was Sarai's maidservant; the Moslems say she was an Egyptian princess. Notice the similarities of Ghaggar, Hakra and Hagar".



What, too, of the early east, Elam, Iran Plateau and India (Indus Valley) in pre-dynastic times?

For that, we must again turn to Part Two of Dr. Osgood Stone Ages:


…. Elam and the Indus Valley Civilisation

The geography of this region can be divided into three areas:

(a) The area of ancient Elam — Fars, Khuzistan and parts of Luristan, Kurdistan and Kerman provinces ….;
(b) The Iranian plateau across into Pakistan; and
(c) The Indus Valley.

This region has naturally been tied into Mesopotamian sequences, which therefore become a guide to the history of the region and especially its western relationships.
Prior to the earliest appearances of man in the Iranian Plateau, there is strong evidence of much residual water and of wet conditions, the sort of conditions we would expect following the great Flood.32

"Recent geological research has shown that at the time when the greater part of Europe was covered by glaciers, the Iranian Plateau was passing through a pluvial period, during which even the high valleys were under water. The central part of the plateau, today a great salt desert, was then an immense lake or inland sea into which many rivers ran from the high mountains." 33


  1. ANCIENT ELAM






The early pottery of the Susiana area of Khuzistan demonstrates painted ware (dark-painted buff wares) and red and buff plain wares of long indigenous standing.

"This ceramic group shares shapes, motifs, and manufacturing techniques with the Middle (c. 4300-4200 B.C.) and Early (c. 5200-4800 B.C.) Susiana assemblages and represents the culmination of a primarily local craft tradition whose roots can be traced back into the fifth and possibly the sixth millenium B.C." 34

The above wares (Susa I) are to be placed before the Mesopotamian Uruk period.35 If the biblical model of the Origin of Nations is assumed to be the chronological framework, then the Susiana sequence until the end of Susa would be contemporary with the Eridu to Ubaid series of Mesopotamia; itself to be seen contemporary with the Hassuna to northern
Ubaid series36.
So in the earliest occupation of Susiana by man we are faced with a population which would identify geographically with the genetic Elamites, descendants of 'Elam' son of Shem, son of Noah, of Genesis 10.
Moreover, as the genetic stock multiplied, we may reasonably expect a compounding of groups along tribal or family lines (Genesis 10:5,20,31) but, at this stage, within the same language group characteristics as the parent Elamites. Such is in fact the case when we consider the early groups who inhabited the region of ancient Elam and the surrounding districts.

"From south to the north, these were the Elamites, Kassites, the Lullubi, and the Guti. All
belonged to the same racial groups; all spoke related languages, and the constant pressure of the plain, which was already organised in civilized kingdoms, forced them all to unite at about the same time though only temporarily."31

I am therefore suggesting that the early people of Susiana were the biblical 'Elam' of Genesis 10, and that they also gave rise to the Kassites, Lullubi, and Guti of Mesopotamian history ….
At the end of Susa I period, equivalent to the beginning of the Uruk period in Mesopotamia, and for the duration of Susa II (Uruk IV), we meet in Iran the monochrome red ware so typical of the Uruk of Mesopotamia. Thus a profound cultural dominance of the Uruk civilisation becomes evident for the whole duration of the Uruk IV and Susa II periods.
As Carter and Stolper state:

"Thus, both on the specific level of artifact styles and on the general scale of social organization the Susa II period can be considered the equivalent of the Uruk period in Mesopotamia." 38

The identity of the Susa culture does not apparently disappear, but is certainly, profoundly
influenced by the dominant Uruk culture which, however, does not give any marked evidence of violent imposition, although some evidence of destruction is present at the beginning of the period.

"The nature of the transition between period I and period II is still unclear at Susa. Although several phases of destruction, abandonment, and reconstruction of the terrace are found near the end of period I, it is not until later period II that this monumental structure falls into complete ruin."39

Nevertheless, I believe we must assume possible military dominance, considering the profound nature of the cultural change to Uruk-type artifacts.

"Detailed analyses such as those carried out by Johnson would probably show variations
between the Khuzistan and Mesopotamian assemblages. Nevertheless, the closeness of the Susa II and Uruk assemblages is striking" 40

And again:

"At Susa, painted pottery suddenly stops and is replaced by a monochrome red ware with handle and tubular spout. This also occurs on the Mesopotamian plain, where it is characteristic of the period known as Uruk IV."41 [End of Osgood’s article]


We are now approximately half a millennium into the post-diluvian era.

As we are going to find, the biblical data pertaining to the great Patriarch, as Abram, will provide us with sufficient material to present a most satisfactory stratigraphical foundation, connecting kings and dynasties all the way from Egypt to Mesopotamia and Elam.



But dynastic history would have arisen only in stages. Thus we might expect that the powerful Sargonid dynasty centred upon the city of Akkad, perhaps the first of all dynasties, was contemporaneous with - at least in its early phase - cultures elsewhere that would be deemed to have been Stone Age - and were certainly not dynastic.

The culture that I have attributed to the Akkadians, the sophisticated Halaf culture (thereby lowering Halaf by four millennia from its conventional dating), we found to have been, in its later phase (Chalcolithic), contemporary with both Late Chalcolithic and Neolithic IV in Palestine and Lebanon.

This stratigraphical phase was also (as we shall soon learn) the time of Abram himself, meaning that Abram must have been contemporaneous with the Akkadian dynasty of Shinar.



The Middle Bronze I Age, to which Abram is conventionally assigned - partly because of its nomadic aspect - will turn out to be hopelessly inaccurate for Abram.

Middle Bronze I was indeed nomadic, but it pertains to the wandering (and Exodus) Israelites, some four hundred or more years later than Abram.



Assuredly, Dr. John Osgood has laid the solid stratigraphico-biblical foundations for us.

Let us now follow his analysis further eastwards, to the Iranian Plateau and the Indus Valley"


…. The Iranian plateau

The earliest settlement of the plateau has been identified at Siyalk south of Teheran.

In Period I - Evidence of hunting and early farming are apparent, as are also stockbreeding.47 A black smoked pottery, hand-made, is present and with this is a second piece - a red ware with black patches from accidents of firing. Further to this was the introduction of painted pottery (indigenous).

Period II at Siyalk is a more advanced phase of the first. In the ceramics a pottery was introduced with decorations in black paint on the dark red ground.48

The presence of these two phases has been identified mainly on the edge of the great central desert … at Sivalk, Qumm, Savah, Rayy. and Damgan (Tepe Hissar).
….

There appeared to be an expansion at the end of Period II to such sites as Giyan. and Tell Bakun westward of the earlier sites; and also across the whole of the Plateau.49 This painted pottery culture flourished, and development occurred in ceramics and the use of metals, but local diversity was evident.

It was during the latter part of Period III that the Uruk influence was evident in the western areas such as Susa, while the Plateau maintained its development. Towards its end, however, two influences were felt; the first a slow infiltration in the north east by a black or grey-black pottery culture, almost certainly by the Turan culture from Turkomenia in southern Russia, and the second a brutal conquest by the Proto-Elamite culture from the area of Susiana, contemporary with the Jemdat-Nasr culture of the Mesopotamian plain.50

For a continuation of the earlier culture of the Plateau we must look to the areas east of the Plateau, towards Pakistan and the Indus Valley, as well as southern Afghanistan. This is not to suggest that the people of these regions were the result of those driven out of Iran, but simply to indicate a cultural affinity with the people of Iran, which may or may not equate with the same racial origins. Mundigak in southern Afghanistan certainly appears to show this affinity from its Period I to Period III ….

The whole impression of the Mundigak period I assemblage is of closer proximity to sites of Iran:

‘There are numbers of flat stone seals, both square and circular . . . The whole assemblage from period 3 shows many features reminiscent of Siyallc and Hissar, and this too suggests actual contacts with Iran’51

The equation Mundigak III equals Siyalk III … appears to be a contemporary situation particularly evident in the seals.54 We therefore date the end of Siyalk III and Mundigak III with the Jemdat Nasr period of Mesopotamia. Thus the former ended at about 1900-1850 B.C.
….

As far as numbers are concerned, we are dealing with more arid geographical conditions and would therefore expect smaller groups of people at any one site, and hence a wider spread of the total population of the plateau. Whether this means that some of the people who settled in the Iranian plateau were part of the same who went to the Indus Valley is yet to be determined, but should be a plausible theory.

Certainly populations appear to have been in both areas simultaneously.

The Indus Valley Civilisation

The evidence has forced the conviction among many archaeologists that the people arrived in the Indus Valley system ultimately from the west. As Allchin and Allchin have said:

‘Somewhere, around the end of the fourth millenium B.C. - the date is hypothetical and as yet attested by no radiocarbon samples - important cultural changes seem to have occurred in the sites of north and central Baluchistan. What these changes signify is not clear, but they may well have involved the arrival of new influences or people from the west. Their interest is emphasized by the fact that they coincided with, and clearly contributed to, the extension of settled life on to the vast plains of the Indus system.’53
….
A phenomenon of ‘sloping chronology’ occurs from west to east from the Sumer area to the Indus system. In other words, civilisation was established later as one moves eastward from Sumer to the Indus, a feature we would expect if we were to adopt the biblical model of population dispersion from Babel outwards.

In discussing this phenomenon. Lamberg Karlovsky have this to say:

‘...Thus, as a general observation, it appears that as one moves from west to east the process of urbanization occurs at a slightly later date...’54

They are in fact dealing most particularly with the concept of diffusion of URBAN TRAITS, rather than primary population settlement, and eventually prefer the concept of independent urbanization as a major process, that is, after primary settlement has already occurred, a concept that is perfectly in keeping with the biblical model.

The fact of a sloping chronology however, has deeper ramifications than this, for it is inevitable that such a phenomenon would be somehow evident if the biblical model of diffusion of people outwards from Babel were to be the correct model of the primary settlement of human habitation; and we would assert that herein lies powerful circumstantial evidence for the correctness of that model ….
….
Amri Ib appears to be contemporary with the later part of Mundigak III.55 Amri was contemporary with other cultures in the Indus river system, viz. Kalibangan and Harappa are both representative of three sub regions of the Indus civilization.56

These cultures were all pre-Harappan (i.e. the classical Indus River civilization) and represent a contemporaneity with the Chalcolithic of Mesopotamia. Moreover, each of these subcultures show an affinity with the western Baluchistan culture and in fact appear to suggest a Baluchi ancestry, a point totally consistent with the biblical model.57

The pre-Harappan cultures of the Indus River system all show evidence of continuity of cultural traits into the Harappan culture. Although there is evidence of destruction in some sites, as the Harappan culture emerges, the continuity is evident. This also leaves open the possibility that we are dealing with a population which is the same genetically from the pre-Harappan to the Harappan phase, an exceedingly strong possibility given the early days of this culture and the geography of the area.

The Harappan civilization had its own script, which first appears during its classical period and therefore a short time after the appearance of other scripts, such as proto-Elamite in the west. In fact, their emergence may have been, and probably was being, invented by the separate peoples simultaneously ….
….

This Indus script has been of recent times shown to be, or at least strongly suggested to be, Proto Dravidian; that is the forerunner of the Dravidian scripts of today.58 It was another centre of the multi-centred redevelopment of writing.

[End of Osgood’s article]

To me, the sound of the language of the Australian aboriginals (apparently there were actually around 300 languages-dialects) is somewhat like Indian (Dravidian?) speech.

And there may be a good reason for this, to be found in the DNA. For instance, we read at: https://campaignprojects.wordpress.com/2009/10/13/tamil-and-australian-aboriginal-languages/




"I sat and watched Ten Canoes [movie] the other day. The language in it sounded like Tamil. Which was a surprise. Just like years ago I realised that Japanese and Tamil words were interchangeable in a sentence. So I went looking for research where others may have found this too. I came across this:





Perhaps most similar to Australian languages are the Dravidian languages of southern India. Tamil, for example, has five places of articulation in a single series of stops, paralleled by a series of nasals, and no fricatives (thus approaching the Australian proportion of sonorants to obstruents of 70% to 30%). Approaching the question from the opposite direction: according to the latest WHO data on the prevalence of chronic otitis media (Acuin 2004:14ff), Aboriginal Australians have the highest prevalence in the world – 10-54%, according to Coates & al (2002), up to 36% with perforations of the eardrum. They are followed – at some distance – by the Tamil of southern India (7.8%, down from previous estimates of 16-34%), …




Then I started to look at other linking the [Tamil] and the Aboriginal. And here I encountered a lot of material. …. [A] big [proportion] of this has to be discounted as it is typically in the vein of the Indian or Tamil suprematist. Quickly – that vein is one that claims that Tamil is the original language – and the class of languages called Dravidian (an unfortunate appellation?) is huge and spread all over the world. …. Still now we can start to read about DNA evidence. See this:
Dr Rao and his colleagues sequenced the mitochondrial genomes of 966 people from traditional tribes in India. They reported several of the Indian people studied had two regions of their mitochondrial DNA that were identical to those found in modern day Australian Aboriginal people. (http://s1.zetaboards.com/anthroscape/topic/2011921/1/)


What, then, was the world scene when, in c. 1960 BC, Abram and his family arrived in Canaan?

I shall give an outline of it here, from Egypt to Elam, and then follow it up with a proper historico-stratigraphical examination:


C. 1960 BC

Palestine
Abram and his family in Canaan.
"The Canaanites and Perizzites were also living in the land at that time" (Genesis 13:7).
"… the Amalekites, as well as the Amorites who were living in Hazezon Tamar [= Engeddi]" (14:7).
"… the Rephaites in Ashteroth Karnaim, the Zuzites in Ham, the Emites in Shaveh Kiriathaim and the Horites in the hill country of Seir, as far as El Paran near the desert" (14:5-6).

"Bera king of Sodom, Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, Shemeber king of Zeboyim, and the king of Bela (that is, Zoar)" (14:2)
In Pentapolis.

Shinar and Further East
"… Amraphel was king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam and Tidal king of Goyim" (14:1).

Egypt
Pharaoh Menes (= Hor Aha, or Min), the first king of Egypt’s First Dynasty.


The beginning of Egyptian dynastic history now needs to be lowered from the conventional date of c. 3100 BC (not so long ago it was Sothically estimated at 4240 BC) to the era of Abram in Canaan and Egypt.

That is a shift of more than a millennium.

Also to be shifted downwards is the Akkadian dynasty’s Naram-Sin (a descendant of Sargon’s), if W. F. Albright was correct in his conclusion that the Manium (or Mannu) of Egypt ("Magan") whom Naram-Sin claims to have defeated was Menes himself.

This would bring Naram-Sin (c. 2250 BC, conventional dating) down the time scale by several hundred years.



Dr. Albright had estimated that the "Mani lord of Magan" whom Naram-Sin claimed to have smote, could not have been any petty ruler, given that Naram-Sin called him "mighty" (… Mannu dannu šar Magan). ("Menes and Naram-Sin", JEA, Vol. 6, No. 2, Apr., 1920).


And so Albright wrote (p. 89):
 
"The fact that king Mannu here is called dannu, ‘mighty’, is very important, as no other of the princes conquered by Narâm-Sin has this honorific title in his inscriptions except the latter himself who, in common with the others of his dynasty, affixes dan(n)u … to his name: Narâm-Sin dan(n)u … Narâm-Sin, the mighty …. The lord of Magan must have been a powerful ruler to receive so illustrious an appellative".

 

Naram-Sin, being a mighty Akkadian king - hence a king of "Shinar" - at the time of Abram, must now be the stand-out historical king to have been Genesis 14:1’s "Amraphel … king of Shinar". Naram-Sin (Amraphel) is also a likely candidate now, I think, for the enigmatic Narmer, a close contemporary of Abram’s as we shall find, who is thought to have been either a Pharaoh of Egypt or a conqueror from the east.

That last description would again fit with, now Naram-Sin, now Amraphel.

Naram-Sin was a truly great king. M. van de Mieroop tells us of the extent of Naram-Sin’s mighty reach, though typically understated without the necessary inclusion of Egypt ("Magan") and Ethiopia (A History of the Ancient Near East. Ca. 3000-323 BC, Blackwell, 2004, p. 63):

"The statements of Sargon and Naram-Sin stand out, however, because of their wide geographical range: these were certainly the greatest military men of the time. Yet, as Naram-Sin had to repeat many of his grandfather’s campaigns, it seems these often amounted to no more than raids. [Cf. Genesis 14]

The Akkadian kings focused their military attention on the regions of western Iran and northern Syria. In the east they encountered a number of states or cities, such as Elam, Parahshum, and Simurrum …. In the north they entered the upper Euphrates area, reaching the city of Tuttul at the confluence with the Balikh river, the cult center of Dagan that acted as a central focus of northern and western Syria. Mari and Ebla, the most prominent political centers of the region up till then, were destroyed. ….

The accounts mention many places even more remote, such as the cedar forests in Lebanon, the headwaters of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in eastern Turkey, Marhashi, east of Elam, and areas across the "Lower Sea," i.e., the Persian Gulf. These were reached in far-flung forays for the procurement of rare goods, hard stone, wood, or silver. Booty from these areas was brought to Babylonia. Several stone vessels excavated at Ur and Nippur were inscribed with the statement that they were booty from Magan [= Egypt], for instance. It seems unlikely, however, that these areas were subsequently controlled by Akkad.

Rather, the raids aimed at monopolizing access to trade routes. Ships from overseas areas, such as Dilmun (Bahrain), Magan … and Meluhha [= Ethiopia] … are said to have moored in Akkad’s harbor. So when Naram-Sin claims that he conquered Magan, it seems more likely that he used his military might to guarantee access to its resources".

Amraphel is not - despite the name similarity - the famous Hammurabi of Babylon, as was believed in the past. Great confusion in all of this has been caused by a misinterpretation of the Spartoli tablets, which seemed to pit Hammurabi against the other coalitionists Kudur-Lagamar ("the servant of the goddess Lagamar") or Chedorlaomer, Eri-Aku or Arioch, and Tudkhula or Tidal. We can read of it at: http://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/sitchin/sitchinbooks03_05.htm




"The discovery was announced in a lecture by Theophilus Pinches to the Victoria Institute, London, in 1897. Having examined several tablets belonging to the Spartoli Collection in the British Museum, he found that they describe a war of wide-ranging magnitude, in which a king of Elam, Kudur-laghamar, led an alliance of rulers that included one named Eri-aku and another named Tud-ghula - names that easily could have been transformed into Hebrew as Khedor-la’omer, Ariokh, and Tidhal. Accompanying his published lecture with a painstaking transcript of the cuneiform writing and a translation thereof, Pinches could confidently claim that the biblical tale had indeed been supported by an independent Mesopotamian source.

"With justified excitement the Assyriologists of that time agreed with Pinches reading of the cuneiform names. The tablets indeed spoke of "Kudur-Laghamar, king of the land of Elam"; all scholars agreed that it was a perfect Elamite royal name, the prefix Kudur ("Servant") having been a component in the names of several Elamite kings, and Laghamar being the Elamite epithet-name for a certain deity. It was agreed that the second name, spelled Eri-e-a-ku in the Babylonian cuneiform script, stood for the original Sumerian ERI.AKU, meaning "Servant of the god Aku," Aku being a variant of the name of Nannar/Sin. It is known from a number of inscriptions that Elamite rulers of Larsa bore the name "Servant of Sin," and there was therefore little difficulty in agreeing that the biblical Eliasar, the royal city of the king Ariokh, was in fact Larsa. There was also unanimous agreement among the scholars for accepting that the Babylonian text’s Tud-ghula was the equivalent of the biblical "Tidhal, king of Go’im"; and they agreed that by Go’im the Book of Genesis referred to the "nation-hordes" whom the cuneiform tablets listed as allies of Khedorla’omer.

"Here, then, was the missing proof - not only of the veracity of the Bible and of the existence of Abraham, but also of an international event in which he had been involved!

"....The second discovery was announced by Vincent Scheil, who reported that he had found among the tablets in the Imperial Ottoman Museum in Constantinople a letter from the well-known Babylonian King Hammurabi, which mentions the very same Kudur-laghamar! Because the letter was addressed to a king of Larsa, Father Scheil concluded that the three were contemporaries and thus matched three of the four biblical kings of the East - Hammurabi being none other than "Amraphael king of Shin’ar."

"....However, when subsequent research convinced most scholars that Hammurabi reigned much later (from 1792 to 1750 B.C., according to The Cambridge Ancient History), the synchronization seemingly achieved by Scheil fell apart, and the whole bearing of the discovered inscriptions - even those reported by Pinches - came into doubt. Ignored were the pleas of Pinches that no matter with whom the three named kings were to be identified - that even if Khedorla’omer, Ariokh, and Tidhal of the cuneiform texts were not contemporaries of Hammurabi - the text’s tale with its three names was still "a remarkable historical coincidence, and deserves recognition as such." In 1917, Alfred Jeremias (Die sogenanten Kedorlaomer-Texte) attempted to revive interest in the subject; but the scholarly community preferred to treat the Spartoli tablets with benign neglect.

"....Yet the scholarly consensus that the biblical tale and the Babylonian texts drew on a much earlier, common source impels us to revive the plea of Pinches and his central argument: How can cuneiform texts, affirming the biblical background of a major war and naming three of the biblical kings, be ignored? Should the evidence - crucial, as we shall show, to the understanding of fateful years - be discarded simply because Amraphel was not Hammurabi?

"The answer is that the Hammurabi letter found by Scheil should not have sidetracked the discovery reported by Pinches, because Scheil misread the letter. According to his rendition, Hammurabi promised a reward to Sin-Idinna, the king of Larsa, for his "heroism on the day of Khedorla’omer." This implied that the two were allies in a war against Khedorla’omer and thus contemporaries of that king of Elam.

It was on this point that Scheil’s find was discredited, for it contradicted both the biblical assertion that the three kings were allies and known historical facts: Hammurabi treated Larsa not as an ally but as an adversary, boasting that he "overthrew Larsa in battle," and attacked its sacred precinct "with the mighty weapon which the gods had given him."

"A close examination of the actual text of Hammurabi’s letter reveals that in his eagerness to prove the Hammurabi-Amraphel identification, Father Scheil reversed the letter’s meaning: Hammurabi was not offering as a reward to return certain goddesses to the sacred precinct (the Emutbal) of Larsa; rather, he was demanding their return to Babylon from Larsa.

"....The incident of the abduction of the goddesses had thus occurred in earlier times; they were held captive in the Emutbal "from the days of Khedorla’omer"; and Hammurabi was now demanding their return to Babylon, from where Khedorla’omer had taken them captive. This can only mean that Khedorla’omer’s days were long before Hammurabi’s time.

"Supporting our reading of the Hammurabi letter found by Father Scheil in the Constantinople Museum is the fact that Hammurabi repeated the demand for the return of the goddesses to Babylon in yet another stiff message to Sin-Idinna, this time sending it by the hand of high military officers. This second letter is in the British Museum (No. 23,131) and its text was published by L.W. King in The Letters and Inscriptions of Hammurabi.

"....That the goddesses were to be returned from Larsa to Babylon is made clear in the letter’s further instructions.

"....It is thus clear from these letters that Hammurabi - a foe, not an ally, of Larsa - was seeking restitution for events that had happened long before his time, in the days of Kudur-Laghamar, the Elamite regent of Larsa. The texts of the Hammurabi letters thus affirm the existence of Khedorla-omer and of Elamite reign in Larsa ("Ellasar") and thus of key elements in the biblical tale".



Hammurabi, like Abram (who actually pre-dates Hammurabi by about a millennium), has wrongly been assigned to the Middle Bronze era.


Owing to the fact that patriarch Abraham was located by such luminaries as Drs. Nelson Glueck and W. F. Albright to the phase of Palestinian archaeology known as Middle Bronze I [MBI], that period, in the words of Dr. J. Osgood, "has since been indelibly associated with the time of Abraham in the minds of many" ("The Times of Abraham": http://creation.com/the-times-of-abraham). But, as Osgood continues, despite that MBI fits the conventional dating, and that it may have been a nomadic phase, "placement of Abraham in the Middle Bronze I Age has nothing more positive than that to offer".

What conventional scholars in the past have tended to do is to calculate biblically the dates for Abraham and then to align these with the standard dates for Mesopotamia.

And that process appears to be continuing today.

Thus we read in Matt McClellan’s "Abraham and the Chronology of Ancient Mesopotamia" (https://answersingenesis.org/bible-timeline/abraham-and-the-chronology-of-ancient-mesopotamia/):



"There are other ways of dating Abraham including the use of the popular date of 1446 for the Exodus and 645 years between Abraham and the Exodus. Using this method one will date Abraham’s 75th year in the year 2091 during the Ur III period. It is during this period that Gleason Archer has placed Abraham (Archer 2007, p. 183). With 430 years between Abraham’s 75th year and the Exodus he would have arrived in Canaan in the year 1876 during the Isin-Larsa period like Kitchen dates him. Alfred Hoerth, in his Archaeology and the Old Testament, uses this method to date Abraham to this period (Hoerth 1998, pp. 58–59).

Using Ussher’s date of 1491 for the Exodus and 645 years Abraham would have entered Canaan in the year 2136 during the reign of the Gutium. Using 430 years would place the same event in 1921 during the Isin-Larsa period. To make things even more complicated many scholars seem to date Abraham (and the other patriarchs) to the Middle Bronze Age without being specific on whether Abraham lived during Ur III or Isin-Larsa (Albright 1963, pp. 4, 7; Bright 1981, p. 83; LaSor, Hubbard and Bush 1996, pp. 41–43; Rooker 2003, pp. 233–235).5"


Whilst Amraphel is mentioned (14:1) first in the coalition of four kings, it is the third named, "Chedorlaomer king of Elam", who seems to have taken the leading rôle in Palestinian affairs (14:4-5): "For twelve years [the kings of Pentapolis] had been subject to Chedorlaomer, but in the thirteenth year they rebelled. In the fourteenth year, Chedorlaomer and the kings allied with him went out …".

There is an Elamite (Susiana) king, Kudur-Lagamar (c. 1750 BC, conventional dating), who has the same name as our biblical king, but about whom, at present, virtually nothing is known.

We read before that "… the early people of Susiana were the biblical ‘Elam’ of Genesis 10, and that they also gave rise to the Kassites, Lullubi, and Guti of Mesopotamian history".



The Genesis 14:1 coalition of four kings caused immense damage throughout Palestine.

And it is archaeologically verifiable.

Traces of the destruction wrought by the four kings can be found in the Chalcolithic period. Dr. Osgood argued this in a clinching piece of archaeological evidence ("The Times of Abraham"): http://creation.com/the-times-of-abraham




"As is often the case, the positive clue comes from the most insignificant portion of the passage. In Genesis 14:7 we are told that the [four] kings of Mesopotamia attacked "the Amorites who dwelt in Hazezon-tamar".' Now 2 Chronicles 20:2 tells us that Hazezon-tamar is En-gedi, the oasis mentioned in Scripture a number of times on the western shore of the Dead Sea. The passage in Genesis chapter 14, therefore, allows us to conclude that in the days of Abraham there was a civilization in En-gedi ..., a civilization of Amorites, and that these were defeated by Chedorlaomer in his passage northward...".

Happily for us, Chalcolithic settlements in Tuleilat al Ghussul, north-east of the Dead Sea, Jericho, Masada and En-gedi have been excavated. The excavations found only three major periods of settlement in En-gedi and its larger area:-



1. The Roman period - not relevant here.
2. During the Kingdom of Israel - not relevant here.
3. During the Chalcolithic of Palestine - "the largest and most prolific settlement period.



….

The remarkable thing about this [Late Chalcolithic] culture also was that it was very similar, if not the same culture, to that found at a place in the southern Jordan Valley called Taleilat Ghassul (which is the type site of this culture), and also resembles the culture of Beersheba. The culture can in fact be called ‘Ghassul culture’ and specifically Ghassul IV.

The Ghassul IV culture disappeared from Trans Jordan, Taleilat Ghassul and Beersheba and the rest of the Negev as well as from Hazezon-tamar or En-gedi apparently at the same time. It is remarkable when looked at on the map that this disappearance of the Ghassul IV culture corresponds exactly to the areas which were attacked by the Mesopotamian confederate of kings. The fact that En-gedi specifically terminates its culture at this point allows a very positive identification of this civilization, Ghassul IV, with the Amorites of Hazezon-tamar.

If that be the case, then we can answer Bar Adon’ question very positively. The reason the people did not return to get their goods was that they had been destroyed by the confederate kings of Mesopotamia, in approximately 1,870 B.C. in the days of Abraham.

Now as far as Palestine is concerned, in an isolated context, this may be possible to accept, but many might ask: What about the Mesopotamian kings themselves? Others may ask: What does this do to Egyptian chronology? And still further questions need to be asked concerning the origin of the Philistines in the days of Abraham, for the Philistines were closely in touch with Abraham during this same period (Genesis 20). So we must search for evidence of Philistine origins or habitation at approximately the end of the Chalcolithic (Ghassul IV) in Palestine. All these questions will be faced".



Osgood rightly concludes, therefore, that this late Chalcolithic settlement must be the one that dates to the time of Abram and the invasion by the four eastern kings.

This is another huge argument against the linear approach to stratigraphy. It tells us that, whilst sophisticated kingdoms and cities may be in place in one part of the world (e.g. the Akkadian kingdom in Shinar), those in other places may be living so basic an existence as to be classified according to a late Stone Age culture.

The amazing thing is that, after these four mighty kings had mopped up the five kings of Pentapolis, the giant Rephaïm ("the Rephaites"), the Zuzites, the Emites, and the Horites (Genesis 14:5-6), they were routed by the ‘Stone Age’ culture Abram and his "318 trained men born in his household".

Genesis 14:11-16 tells of it:



"The four kings seized all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah and all their food; then they went away. They also carried off Abram’s nephew Lot and his possessions, since he was living in Sodom. A man who had escaped came and reported this to Abram the Hebrew. Now Abram was living near the great trees of Mamre the Amorite, a brother of Eshkol and Aner, all of whom were allied with Abram. When Abram heard that his relative had been taken captive, he called out the 318 trained men born in his household and went in pursuit as far as Dan. During the night Abram divided his men to attack them and he routed them, pursuing them as far as Hobah, north of Damascus. He recovered all the goods and brought back his relative Lot and his possessions, together with the women and the other people".



Though we cannot unequivocally identify at this stage Chedorlaomer the Elamite, the apparent leader of this coalition, we can, with the aid of Dr. Osgood, identify his stratigraphical phase ("The Times of Abraham"):



The Mesopotamian complex of Chedor Laomer

Ghassul IV corresponds in Mesopotamia to the period known as the Jemdat-Nasr/Uruk period, otherwise called Protoliterate (because it was during this period that the archaeologists found the first evidence of early writing). Ghassul IV also corresponds to the last Chalcolithic period of Egypt, the Gerzean or pre-Dynastic period …. Let us look, therefore, at both of these geographically and archaeologically, and see what we find.
….
Jemdat Nasr is a site in northern Sumer, northeast of Babylon …. It is a site that was found to have a pottery with similarities to the culture of Elam and corresponding in time to the later phases of the Uruk culture.
We have in Mesopotamia, therefore, archaeological evidence that there was a period in which the Uruk culture, and an Elamite culture typified by Jemdat Nasr, were in some sort of combination, and this corresponds to the period in Palestine when the Ghassul culture disappeared. The writing of this period does not allow us to recognise at this point any particular kings from contemporary records for it is undeciphered, but all that is known archaeologically is in agreement with the possibility of a combine of nations of the description of Genesis 14 existing. …".
Regarding Erech, though, Anne Habermehl offers the following possible revised location of it (op. cit.):




"There are historical indications of a city in the Khabur triangle area in the north of Syria that could have been the biblical Erech. Called "Urakka" in various Assyrian sources, it is mentioned by Astour (1968, 1993), Olmstead (1921), and Postgate (1974). Urakka is shown on the online map of the Assyrian Empire (Parpola 1987), near the modern city of Amuda in Syria, almost on the Turkish border (see fig. 3). There is an ancient mound 6 km (3 miles) south of Amuda, called Tell Aqab, that could possibly be this Urakka; excavations carried out on Aqab show it to have roots in great antiquity (Davidson and Watkins 1981). Looking at Urakka/Aqab from the point of view of etymology, if the "Ur" is taken off the front of "Urakka," "akka" is very close to "Aqab, making the equating of the two names plausible."14 Another spelling variation of the same city appears to be Arakdi; this city is stated to be north of "Til Bari" (called Tell Barri today, located about 10 km (6 miles) north of Tell Brak), and was considered to be a fairly important place in the ninth century BC (Olmstead 1918). This would point to the same location near Amuda for both Urakka and Urakdi, and there would be reason to believe that Tell Aqab is the location of Erech of the Bible, again allowing for the many spelling variants of these names".



Given that another of the coalitional kings was "… Arioch king of Ellasar …" (Genesis 14:1), with "Ellasar" though to refer to either Larsa (in Sumer) or Assur (to the north, in Assyria), then it is possible that a Shinarian culture arising out of NE Syria had extended its influence right throughout Mesopotamia, even with the duplication of names, such as Erech (Uruk).

This will need to be determined archaeologically, of course.

Osgood continues, now describing the situation even further to the east, in Susiana:

"Archaeology in Iran. in the plain of Susiana, has demonstrated a resurgent Elamite culture contemporary with Jemdat Nasr in Mesopotamia,9 and this fits the biblical suggestion of a dominant Chedorlaomer (Genesis 14).

Considering the fact that the Bible allows the interpretation of Chedorlaomer being the chief of the combine of kings, one could even theorise that Jemdat Nasr may have been a site deliberately built by the Elamite king to assist control of the region of Sumer, but that remains highly speculative.

We have then so far, in summary, the following evidence as a witness that the end of the Chalcolithic in Palestine was during the days of Abraham:-

1.    A fit on the archaeological table previously presented that corresponds.
2.    Positive identification of a culture, corresponding exactly geographically to the biblical story, which disappeared from the scene at that period of time in Palestine and Trans Jordan.
3.    Archaeological evidence in Mesopotamia which is consistent with a combination of Sumerian and Elamite kings, and which definitely allows the possibility of other confederates.
…. 

But Egypt!

 At this stage there will be many objections to the hypothesis here presented, for it is totally contradictory to the presently held Egyptian chronology of the ancient world. However, I would remind my reader that the Egyptian chronology is not established, despite claims to the contrary. It has many speculative points within it. Let us continue to see if there is any correspondence, for if Abraham was alive in the days of the Ghassul IV culture, then he was alive in the days of the Gerzean culture of pre-Dynastic Egypt, possibly living into the days of the first Dynasty of Egypt.

The correspondence between this period in Palestine and in Egypt is very clear, and has been solidly established, particularly by the excavations at Arad by Ruth Amiram10 and at Tel Areini by S. Yeivin.11

Such a revised chronology as here presented would allow Abraham to be in contact with the earliest kings of Dynasty I and the late pre-Dynastic kings, and this would slice a thousand years off the presently held chronology of Egypt. To many the thought would be too radical to contemplate. The author here insists that it must be contemplated. Only so will the chronology of the ancient world be put into proper perspective. Long as the task may take, and however difficult the road may be, it must be undertaken.

In order to support the present revised chronology here held, the author sites another correspondence archaeologically, and this concerns both the Philistines and Egypt.

The Philistine Question

Genesis 20 makes it clear that Abraham was in contact with the Philistines, yet the accepted chronological record presently held does not recognise Philistines being in the land of Philistia at any time corresponding with the days of Abraham. Yet the Bible is adamant.

The Scripture is clear that the Philistines were in Canaan by the time of Abraham, approximately 1850 B.C., or at least around the area of Gerar between Kadesh and Shur (Genesis 20:1), and Beersheba (Genesis 21:321) …. A king called Abimelech was present, and his military chief was Phicol (Genesis 21:22).

…. We have placed the end of the Chalcolithic of the Negev, En-gedi, Trans Jordan and Taleilat Ghassul at approximately 1870 B.C., being approximately at Abraham’ 80th year. Early Bronze I Palestine (EB I) would follow this, significantly for our discussions. Stratum V therefore at early Arad (Chalcolithic) ends at 1870 B.C., and the next stratum, Stratum IV (EB I), would begin after this.

Stratum IV begins therefore some time after 1870 B.C.. This is a new culture significantly different from Stratum V.112

Belonging to Stratum IV, Amiram found a sherd with the name of Narmer (First Dynasty of Egypt),10, 13 and she dates Stratum IV to the early part of the Egyptian Dynasty I and the later part of Canaan EB I. Amiram feels forced to conclude a chronological gap between Stratum V (Chalcolithic) at Arad and Stratum IV EB I at Arad.12:116 However, this is based on the assumption of time periods on the accepted scale of Canaan’ history, long time periods which are here rejected.

The chronological conclusion is strong that Abraham’ life-time corresponds to the Chalcolithic in Egypt, through at least a portion of Dynasty I of Egypt, which equals Ghassul IV through to EB I in Palestine. The possibilities for the Egyptian king of the Abrahamic narrative are therefore:-


      1. A late northern Chalcolithic king of Egypt, or

      2. Menes or Narmer, be they separate or the same king (Genesis 12:10-20)".



[End of Osgood’s article]



Some extremely famous names here, all bundled up together into the (approximately) one historical point in time: Abraham; Menes and Narmer!

And thanks to the conclusion of Dr. Albright (another famous name), we can include the name, Naram-Sin, who, according to Albright, had fought and conquered pharaoh Menes.



I have taken this a stage further, proposing that Narmer - who we know from Osgood to have been closely contemporaneous with Abraham and Menes - was the very Naram-Sin (Narm[er] = Naram) who had defeated pharaoh Menes according to Albright.

This means that Narmer was an eastern potentate, a Shinarian of the famous Sargonid dynasty of Akkad, an invader, and not an actual Egyptian pharaoh.

Nor was he a Sumerian – which land we have divorced from "Shinar".

As an invading Shinarian, at the time of Abraham, Naram-Sin now stands the likeliest chance of having been the biblical Amraphel (Genesis 14:1):


"At the time when Amraphel was king of Shinar …".



David Rohl’s choice for Amraphel of Amar-Sin of the Ur III dynasty, I, too, had once favoured.

It admittedly has some positives: The name Amar-Sin certainly appears to be a better fit for Amraphel than is Naram-Sin; and Amar-Sin also has the seeming advantage of a potential "Arioch king of [Assur?]" type contemporary ally in his governor Zariqum of Assyria.



On the negative side, though: Amar-Sin was presumably a Sumerian, not a Shinarian (as was Amraphel). He reigned for only 9 years and was not a greatly significant king.

And he could not have been a contemporary of Abram’s if, as according to current history, the Ur III dynasty followed the Akkadian dynasty (thus missing out on the Abraham-Menes-Naram-Sin connection).

Nor was he an ally of Elam, as Amraphel indeed was (ally of "Chedorlaomer king of Elam"), for Amar-Sin is known to have campaigned against Elamite rulers.



Patriarch Abraham, not a Middle Bronze I nomad, but belonging to the Late Chalcolithic and Ghassul IV cultural era of Palestine, was a contemporary of the Akkadian ruler, Naram-Sin (likely Amraphel of Shinar) and of the Elamite Jemdat-Nasr culture (presumably Chedorlaomer’s).

Abram was also contemporaneous with the kings of Pentapolis.

His Egyptian contemporary was the first dynastic pharaoh, Menes, who was defeated by Naram-Sin, the latter being also Narmer, who was therefore not an Egyptian.



Later, I shall suggest an extension of Menes to include the long-reigning First Dynasty, Min, or Hor-Aha.









 
To be continued
 


This article (begun June 13th, 2017) is my second attempt to write a revised history of the world from Creation to Jesus Christ, 'the Alpha and the Omega, the Lord of History' - the idea originally being suggested to me by Matthew Buckley from (the Gap) Queensland, Australia.