Dating innacurate telescoping in dating naturally occurring events
For the radiocarbon dating, Steinmann gives an impressive list of publications from the excavation team in Egypt’s Delta region, led by Manfred Bietak, that claim that radiocarbon dates for Egyptian pharaohs of the 15th century B. are approximately 170 years too early, and these radiocarbon dates should be adjusted downward by that amount to correspond to reality.
As already mentioned, the Tyrian data found in Menander/Josephus have been used by several scholars to date the beginning of Temple construction, and hence the spring of Solomon’s fourth year (1 Kings 6:1), to 967 B. This date that can also be calculated from the biblical texts, which in turn are tied to Assyrian and astronomical data. Having established the dates of Solomon and the division of the kingdom upon his death, Chapter 3 then uses 1 Kings 6:1 to date the Exodus to Nisan 14, 1446 B. Recognizing that the date of the Exodus is a controversial issue, a full treatment is given for the various arguments in favor of this date versus a date in the 13th century that is advocated by some evangelicals.
The background research is thorough, as reflected in the 30 pages of bibliographic references that can be investigated for further insights. Steinmann’s approach is to present that portion of past research that provides the best understanding of the biblical texts and the associated material from extra-biblical sources.
A tedious overview of all previous scholarship on a given topic, such as would be found in a Ph D thesis, is avoided, so that the reader therefore can focus on determining if the conclusion reached in makes sense.
Chapter 3 correlates the reign of Shoshenq I, first pharaoh of the 22nd Dynasty (the biblical Shishak, 1 Kings and 2 Chronicles 12:2) with Solomon’s successor Rehoboam, and, with less precision, the reign of Siamun, next-to-last pharaoh of Egypt’s 21st Dynasty, with Solomon’s early years. Topics covered are the archaeology of Hazor, Ai, and Jericho, the length of time required for the events of the Book of Judges, and the claim that the 480 years of 1 Kings 6:1 cannot be trusted because it is an imaginary figure for twelve 40-year generations.
By using Egyptian data, the times of these two monarchs can only be determined within a few decades. Some new material here is the discussion of radiocarbon dating for the destruction of Jericho City IV.The dates of birth and death of Jacob would remain the same whether he spent 20 years or 40 years in Paddan Aram., 2006).