2M Jews spent 40 years making an 11 day trip and left no evidence
In response to a previous post, Marcel made the following comment:
You know why the Jews spent 40 years in the desert ? Because just like Atheists they refused to have faith. The truths they heard [were] of no value to them because they did not combine it with faith.
In Hebrews 4:2 (New International Version), Paul says “For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.”
What makes the answer so troubling is the fact that this generation had so much evidence of God’s leading. Go back over the story of the Exodus and of what happened to them in the desert. God performed miracle after miracle, everything from the parting of the Red Sea to the daily provision of the manna. And yet, they still lacked faith!
It is pointless to know the truths of the Bible if you decide to lack faith and refuse to ask for it. Jesus said you can pray for faith.
As usual, DagoodS gave this great response:
marcel: You know why the Jews spent 40 years in the desert ?
Yep. When the Jews created their myths they often used similar numbers. Whether a mnemonic device, or because of religious significance, is a theory that remains up for grabs.
The reason the flood was 40 days, Isaac was 40 when he married Rebekah, Moses was on the mountain for 40 days, they spied the land for 40 days, on two occasions, Judges gave peace for 40 years, and one occasion war for 40 years, (not to mention the Judge who had 40 sons), Eli was priest for 40 years, Saul, David, Solomon, and Joash reigned 40 years each, Elijah was 40 days in the desert, Egypt is prophesied to be barren for 40 years, and Jonah walked Nineveh for 40 days.
marcel: Go back over the story of the Exodus and of what happened to them in the desert.
Thank you, I have. I have studied the archeology, and there is no direct proof of the Ten Plagues, the Exodus or Joshua’s conquest. There is no writing of these events occurring in any other nation. There is no social, economic or political ramifications as demanded by the claims.
I have studied, a little, the development of the Hebrew language which is Phoenician, not Egyptian. How does a slave nation in Egypt develop its own separate language with almost no influence whatsoever from the dominant country, yet direct development from a country that is north of Canaan?
Where are the Egyptian artifact influx from the wandering or the conquest of Canaan from the East? (Hint: we DO see Egyptian artifacts in Canaan from the south during this period along the trade routes. Exactly what we would expect to see if trade was occurring at the border.)
In fact, marcel, Christians are so aware of the difficulties of the Exodus, that they cannot agree as to the millennium within which to place it! I have reached a point I will not debate it, until they agree to the time period plus or minus 100 years, because each proposed date (2500 BCE, 1500 BCE or 1300 BCE) has its own set of unique problems.
I have studied God’s petty anger over the Amalekites. I have studied the possible route. I have studied the various claims surrounding the beginning, the ending and the middle of the Exodus. I have even studied the approximate time it would take to cross the Red Sea. (60 – 90 days, given 2 Million people.)
So…er….what was it you wanted me to study about this myth? Oh, that’s right, their lack of “faith.” You are right, it DOES seem a bit unbelievable. They had witnesses the Ten Plagues, and then spent 60 – 90 days, walking across a sea floor, literally camping next to a wall of water. God then wipes out the entire Egyptian Army. (But curiously avoids the Philistines because they were too war-like, and God didn’t want his nation to encounter battle. Color me confused???) God saves them from the Amalekites with the miracle of Moses’ raised hands.
God provides food and water in a wilderness by miraculous means. Think about human nature—the people are fed, are free from oppression, and are winning battles against enemies. Yet within a little over a month, they become faithless heathens. All while being fed!
Does this read like reality or myth? It wasn’t that they historically lacked faith—it was that the author was making a severe point—follow God and things go well. Don’t and things go bad. The myth fits the point.
marcel: It is pointless to know the truths of the Bible if you decide to lack faith…
And equally, it is pointless to have faith, if it is not based in the truth. I would hope that you would want us to have faith in the truth—not in a lie, correct? As HeIsSailing said in his blog entry, “I want to believe” and a reflection of my own thoughts in this regard: “Belief without evidence is faith. Belief contrary to evidence appears to be delusion.”
Understand I am NOT saying Christians are delusional. What I am saying is that most Christians have not studied the facts that underlie the basis of their belief. If you have studied Exodus, and have come to the conclusion that it was a historical event, I would be curious as to what persuaded you in light of the damning evidence against it.
See, it is not that we lack faith. Or don’t want it. Far, FAR from it! We just want to make sure we are not having faith in the wrong thing.
The Christian Research & Apologetics Ministry (CARM) gave these three reasons on “Why isn’t there any record of millions of Jews wandering in the desert?”
First of all, no archaeological find has ever contradicted the Bible.
Second, lack of evidence doesn’t mean there wasn’t an Exodus.
Third, it may be that the traditional site of Mt. Sinai is incorrect.
Here we have 2,000,000 people wandering in the desert for 40 years on a trip that should have literally taken a few days and they left no evidence behind of their trip. Marcel, do you see why it’s so hard for us to find the faith to believe?
– The de-Convert