King Asa Like Solomon a Steward for Pharaoh

fresque.jpg

by

 Damien F. Mackey

  

Part One: Patriarch Joseph cannot be

Amenhotep Son of Hapu

 

Professor Joseph Davidovits, French polymer scientist, has made some extraordinary claims about pharaoh Amenhotep III’s famed scribe-architect, Amenhotep son of Hapu, arguing that the latter was in fact the biblical patriarch Joseph in Egypt.

 

We may read at the professor’s site the following intriguing suggestions (http://www.davidovits.info/the-lost-fresco-and-the-bible-my-new-book-in-french/):

The Lost Fresco and the Bible (my new book in French)

 

de Joseph Davidovits

On 18 Sep 2009

dans Archaeology, Books, Information

I am presenting my 5th book on the Egyptian civilization, here in connection with the Bible, published by Éditions Jean-Cyrille Godefroy, Paris, ISBN 978-2-86553-216-2

Released on: 29 september 2009

….

In 1935 in Karnak, in Egypt, two French Egyptologists discover a fresco in the ruins of the memorial temple of Amenophis (Amenhotep) Son of Hapu, the most eminent scribe and scientist of ancient Egypt, Great chancellor of the Pharaon Amenhotep III, father of the monotheist Pharaon Akhenaton. Recently, 75 years later, I noted that the text of this fresco was reproduced word for word in the Bible, Genesis 41, when Pharaon installs the biblical Patriarch Joseph to rule over all Egypt. Royal scribe Amenophis Son of Hapu and the Patriarch Joseph are thus the same person.

 

I have found the following table at : http://kovtr.com/wordpress/?paged=5 apparently reproducing the professor’s comparisons between Joseph and Amenhotep (Amenophis) from sites of his: http://www.davidovits.info/wp-content/uploads/joseph-amenophis-english.pdf and: http://www.davidovits.info/filmtv-documentary-proposal-on-egypt/

 

Biblical Patriarch Joseph = Scribe and Genius Amenophis Son of Hapu
Joseph, Genesis 41, 40-46 Amenophis, Son of Hapu
And Pharaoh took off his ring from his

hand, and put it upon Joseph’s hand

He was bestowed with ornaments in gold

and all kind of precious minerals

and he arrayed him in vestures of fine linen He was arrayed with clothes made of linen

of the finest quality

and put a gold chain about his neck A necklace in pure gold and all kind of

minerals was placed around his neck

And Joseph was thirty years old when he

stood before Pharaoh king of Egypt

Year XXX… The great royal scribe,

Amenophis, bowed down before his Majesty

 

These are the sorts of eye-catching parallels that can delight those who seek verification of the historicity of the Bible.

But, since the patriarch Joseph belonged to an archaïc period of Egyptian history :

 

Joseph as Saviour of Archaïc Egypt

 

https://www.academia.edu/21338496/Joseph_as_Saviour_of_Archa%C3%AFc_Egypt

 

far removed in time and style from the age of pharaoh Amenhotep III and his genius official, Amenhotep son of Hapu – in the el-Amarna period revised – see e.g. my:

 

Queen Nefertiti Sealed as Jezebel

 

https://www.academia.edu/3704885/Queen_Nefertiti_Sealed_as_Jezebel

 

then perhaps the most that we can say about comparisons such as the above is that this may have been a conscious return to the formulary of the older Egyptian period.

Later pharaohs often hearkened back to much earlier periods of Egyptian history for their names (titulary) and architectural styles, etc.

There is by now so much from Egyptian history to verify the biblical record that we do not need to insist upon such unrealistic identifications as professor Davidovits’s «Royal scribe Amenophis Son of Hapu and the Patriarch Joseph are thus the same person ».

In the light of the definite similarities here, though, it is most interesting to wonder who was this Amenhotep son of Hapu.

Professor Davidovits continues :

 

Moreover, the fresco contains a surprising detail which underlines its authenticity. Indeed, in Genesis 41, Pharaon names Joseph: çaphenat-paneah (sapnath-panéakh), a name which does not mean anything in Hebrew. Indeed, I discovered that çaphenat-paneah is the Egyptian name Amenophis Fils of Hapou, written reversely, from left to right, the hebrew language being written from right to left. The surprising detail in the fresco is that, precisely, the Egyptian name Amenophis is also written in hieroglyph reversely, from left to right, instead of from right to left like the rest of the text. There is thus absolute agreement between the fresco text and the Bible.

 

Even though I have not read the professor’s book, this bold claim strikes me as being highly unlikely to say the least. His « … absolute agreement between the fresco text and the Bible » is a very strong statement indeed.

The professor apparently follows the conventional dating system, which would locate the el-Amarna era and Amenhotep son of Hapu more realistically closer (about half a millennium), [c. « 1350 B.C »] to the time of the patriarch Joseph. But even that date falls centuries short of the patriarch’s era according to the biblical reckoning.

Davidovits continues and concludes with further striking claims:

 

With this text going back to 1350 B.C., I prove that “the text in the Bible originated from this fresco ” and I describe the historical character of the Patriarch Joseph. I show how the Hebrew craftsmen were indeed Egyptians, yet, their leaders, the priests of Amenophis Son of Hapu’s Memorial Temple were of Semitic origin.

Why was this fresco then occulted by Egyptology? That remains a mystery. One does not find it mentioned in any works and books published by Egyptologists. This explains why biblical researchers and archeologists do not know of its existence and ignore its content. The historicity of the Bible goes back now to 3400 years and I claim that this fresco is the oldest text written word by word in the Bible. I have found many old and modern archaeological documents that fit in this new context. While following the written history of Amenophis Son of Hapu’s Memorial Temple from 1356 to 1060 B.C., one discovers the personality of Moses and the causes for Exodus around 1050 B.C., after heavy religious tensions, agitations and exemplified by the first strikes ever recorded in History, those of the craftmens working in the Valley of the Kings, Karnak, Egypt, called hepkher/hebbrer, the Hebrews.

I also explain in this book who were the Hebrews and their brothers (or cousins) from Madian who hosted Moses during 40 years, those who will be called later, the Arabs.

 

Part Two:

Ahmed Osman Prefers Yuya for Joseph

 

 

Ahmed Osman’s attempt to identify the biblical patriarch Joseph with el Amarna’s Yuya is to be rejected for the same chronological reasons as given in Part One, regarding professor Davidovits’s proposed identification of Joseph with Amenhotep son of Hapu.

 

 

In my rather un-sympathetic review of Ahmed Osman’s historical “mish-mash” as I called it, Out of Egypt. The Roots of Christianity Revealed (Century, 1998), which I entitled:

 

Osman’s ‘Osmosis’ of Moses

https://www.academia.edu/3690035/Osmans_Osmosis_of_Moses

 

I began as follows:

 

Perusing Osman’s book as a revisionist historian, I find it fascinating that he has located David and Solomon precisely where Immanuel Velikovsky did, to the early 18th dynasty of Egypt. No doubt Velikovsky’s 18th dynasty revision (Ages in Chaos I and II) was his main achievement, that will stand in pyramid-like strength after much else of his historical revision has collapsed under the weight of scientific criticism.

The 18th dynasty is also Osman’s entire showcase, encompassing all of his major characters. However, nowhere in his book do I find reference to Velikovsky or any other of the well-known revisionist historians. Osman either has not been influenced by Velikovsky at all, or perhaps does not bother to mention him because Osman retains the conventional dating of the early-mid 18th dynasty, instead of lowering it by the 500-600 years that Velikovsky had maintained was necessary.

More radical still – and even the most intrepid revisionists would baulk at this one – is Osman’s lumping together of Abraham, Joseph and Moses, into the same 18th dynasty scenario with, not only David and Solomon (his Part I: the Chosen People), but even with Jesus (his Part II: Christ the King); thereby totally ignoring customary chronological spacings. According to Osman, the 18th dynasty characters: Thutmose III, Amenhotep III, Yuya, Akhnaton and Tutankhamun, are to be identified as, respectively: David, Solomon, Joseph, Moses and Jesus Christ. Thus, once traditional heroes of Israel – even a great father-figure like King David – are now transmogrified into Egyptian (or, in Yuya’s case, a Syrian). Osman’s excuse for so radical a bouleversement seems to be that he is the one best suited to rediscover “the true Egyptian roots of Christianity and of Western civilization”.

Well, I believe that he has gone about it all in a most biased fashion. I cannot see how Osman – himself a followed of both Sothic dating and Higher Critical view – can possibly escape the label of anti-semitism (here meaning anti-Israel) as described in my earlier TGN article (“Velikovsky and Academic Anti-Semitism”). Osman is guilty of historical piracy, ‘hijacking’ famous Israelites into an Egyptian environment and ‘forcing’ Egyptianhood upon them. But that is an old trick – the Greeks had done it (in favour of Greece) long before him. Whilst admittedly the revision that has grown out of Velikovsky’s efforts can be at times radical, its protagonists are generally careful not to up-end established sequences. Much of the revision revolves around the more plausibly allowable, like deleting ‘Dark Ages’, or shortening artificially over-stretched eras (such as Egypt’s Third Intermediate Period). Velikovsky in fact lost many supporters when he, flying in the face of hard archaeological evidence, had indulged in such a radical up-ending by separating the 18th from the 19th dynasty (sequentially) and inserting in between foreign dynasties of 150 years duration (In Ramses II and His Time, and Peoples of the Sea).

Though Osman certainly becomes most interesting when he departs from the conventional norm, this is only the case when he does so with some sort of coherence. He correctly maintains that his country, Egypt, exerted an influence upon biblical and Christian thinking. However, as I intend to show, he does not appear to have properly understood what he has rightly sensed. He tries to force his examples; thereby missing Egyptian influences that really are there, whilst creating ones that are not. The Sothic chronology lets him down badly, exacerbating his mishmash. Osman proposes David as an Egyptian pharaoh of the C15th BC, who impregnates Sarai. And, taking his cue from the Babylonian Talmud (Osman, op. cit., p. 12), he recklessly makes David the father of Isaac. Despite his avowed aims, Osman lets himself down by his failure to appreciate the relevance of Egypt’s Old Kingdom; his lack of perspective regarding the 18th dynasty; but, most of all, by his anti-Israel bias. He locates the era of the Exodus to the 19th dynasty (New Kingdom), Late Bronze Age.

[End of quote]

 

It comes as no surprise, then, that Osman completely mis-dates and mis-identifies the patriarch Joseph and his most distinctive era of Egyptian history. Whereas professor Davidovits had, as we found, tried to identify Joseph with Amenhotep son of Hapu, Osman has chosen instead the latter’s contemporary, Yuya – both prevailed during the long reign of Amenhotep III.

I wrote of this in the following section of my review of Osman:

 

  1. Joseph = Yuya

 

Osman maintains that Joseph was the highly credentialled Yuya, Syrian relative of Akhnaton. …. Yuya, like Joseph, he states, was the only official in Egypt ever to be called “Father of Pharaoh”. And he optimistically claims that the details of Joseph’s life after his interpreting Pharaoh’s dreams “are matched by only one person in Egyptian history – Yuya, the minister of Amenhotep III (ibid., 39). But again Osman’s apparent ignorance of pre-18th dynasty Egyptian history lets him down. Professor A. Yahuda (op. cit., 23-24) had already found the equivalent title, “Father of Pharaoh” in Old Kingdom Egypt; the Genesis expression, ab, ‘father’, a title borne (centuries before Yuya) by the Vizier, Ptah-hotep, who was itf ntr mryy-ntr, ‘father of god, the beloved of god’; god here indicating Pharaoh. Now, since Ptah-hotep was also a wise sage, whose writings resemble the Hebrew Proverbs, and since he – like Joseph – lived for 110 years, then it is worthwhile considering that Ptah-hotep was Joseph in his guise as scribe and sage.

Osman’s identification of Joseph is a classic example, I think, of where revisionists would think that they could easily trump him. T. Chetwynd, for instance (in “A Seven Year Famine in the Reign of King Djoser with Other Parallels between Imhotep and Joseph”…” C and AH, 1987, 49-56), has found numerous parallels between Joseph and the celebrated Vizier, Imhotep, of the 3rd dynasty (Old Kingdom), who supposedly saved Egypt from a 7-year Famine. ….

Imhotep, who according to J. Hurry (Imhotep, 90) was “one of the few men of genius in the history of ancient Egypt … one of the fixed stars of the Egyptian firmament”, is portrayed as a kind of ‘Leonardo da Vinci’ of Egypt: mathematician, scientist, engineer, architect. He was more besides. Carved on the base of a statue of Zoser in the Cairo Museum is a short inscription describing Imhotep as: “The seal-bearer of the King of Lower Egypt … the high priest of Heliopolis … the chief of the sculptors, of the masons …”. Imhotep has also come down through history as a thaumaturgist, healer and Egyptian patron saint of medicine.

Joseph also, according to Yahuda (op. cit., 24), would have been of the high priestly caste” of Heliopolis – like Imhotep. ….

 

Part Three:

Amenhotep Most Like Senenmut

 

 

The career of Amenhotep son of Hapu seems to have been

closely modelled on that of Senenmut.

 

 

Amenhotep son of Hapu was a highly influential figure, whose fame reached down even into Ptolemaïc times. Horemheb, for one, may have been stylistically influenced by Amenhotep. For according to W. Smith and W. Simpson (The Art and Architecture of Ancient Egypt, 1998, p.195): “The large grey granite statue of Horemheb in the pose of a scribe … is related stylistically to those of Amenhotep son of Hapu … Horemheb has the same plump, well-fed body and wears a long wig similar to that of the aged wise man …”.

Who really was this Amenhotep son of Hapu, upon whom there were bestowed “unprecedented” honours, investing him with virtually regal status?

 

Statuary and Privileges

 

Joann Fletcher offers us a glimpse of his extraordinary power (Egypt’s Sun King. Amenhotep III, Duncan Baird, 2000, p. 51):

 

In an unprecedented move, Amenhotep III gave extensive religious powers to his closest official and namesake, Amenhotep son of Hapu, not only placing the scribe’s statuary throughout Amun’s temple, but also granting his servant powers almost equal to his own: inscriptions on the statues state that Amenhotep son of Hapu would intercede with Amun himself on behalf of those who approached. The king’s chosen man, who was not a member of Amun’s clergy, could act as intermediary between the people and the gods on the king’s behalf, bypassing the priesthood altogether.

[End of quote]

 

In light of what we learned, however, in:

 

Solomon and Sheba

 

https://www.academia.edu/3660164/Solomon_and_Sheba

 

the powers accorded by pharaoh Amenhotep III to his namesake, the son of Hapu, were not “unprecedented”. All of this – and perhaps even more – had already been bestowed upon Senenmut, the ‘power behind the throne’ of Pharaoh Hatshepsut. I have identified this Senenmut as King Solomon in Egypt.

We read in that article of Senenmut’s quasi-royal honours (compare son of Hapu’s “virtually regal status” above):

 

  1. SENENMUT IN HATSHEPSUT’S

KINGSHIP (REGNAL YEARS 7-16)

Hatshepsut’s Coronation

 

In about the 7th year of Thutmose III, according to Dorman [52], Hatshepsut had herself crowned king, assum­ing the name Maatkare or Make-ra (‘True is the heart of Ra’). In the present scheme, this would be close to Solomon’s 30th regnal year. From then on, Hatshepsut is referred to as ‘king’, sometimes with the pronoun ‘she’ and sometimes ‘he’, and depicted in the raiment of a king. She is called the daughter of Amon-Ra – but in the picture of her birth a boy is moulded by Khnum, the shaper of human beings (i.e. Amon-Ra) [53].

According to Dorman, Senenmut was present at Hatshep­sut’s coronation and played a major rôle there [54]. On one statue [55] he is given some unique titles, which Berlandini-Grenier [56] identifies with the official responsible for the ritual clothing of the Queen ‘the stolist of Horus in privacy’, ‘keeper of the diadem in adorning the king’ and ‘he who covers the double crown with red linen’. Winlock was startled that Senenmut had held so many unique offices in Egypt, including ‘more intimate ones like those of the great nobles of France who were honored in being allowed to assist in the most intimate details of the royal toilet at the king’s levees’ [57]. The rarity of the stolist titles suggested to Dorman [58] ‘a one-time exercise of Senenmut’s function of stolist and that prosopographical conclusions might be drawn’, i.e., he had participated in Hatshepsut’s coronation.

….

 

And, even more startling:

 

…. of special interest is the astronomical information in tomb 353, particularly the ceiling of Chamber A [75]. Senenmut’s ceiling is the earliest astronomical ceiling known. We are reminded again of Solomon’s encyclopaedic knowledge of astronomy and calendars (Wisdom 7:17-19). The ceiling is divided into two parts by transverse bands of texts, the central section of which contains the names ‘Hatshepsut’ and ‘Senenmut’ [76]. The southern half contains a list of decans derived from coffins of the Middle Kingdom period that had served as ‘a prototype’ for a family of decanal lists that survived until the Ptolemaïc period; whilst ‘The northern half is decorated with the earliest preserved depiction of the northern constellations; four planets (Mars, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn) are also portrayed with them, and the lunar calendar is represented by twelve large circles’. [77]

In tomb 71 at Sheikh Abd el-Qurna, · the sarcophagus itself is carved of quartzite in a unique oval form adapted from the royal cartouche shape. Dorman [78] says ‘… the sarcophagus seemed to be yet another proof … of the pretensions Senenmut dares to exhibit, skirting dangerously close to prerogatives considered to be exclusively royal’. Winlock [79] would similarly note that it was ‘significantly designed as almost a replica of royal sarcophagi of the time’,

  • one of the painted scenes features a procession of Aegean (Greek) tribute bearers, the first known representation of these people [80] – the only coherent scene on the north wall of the axial corridor portrays three registers of men dragging sledges that provide shelter for statues of Senenmut, who faces the procession of statues.

Senenmut had presented to Hatshepsut ‘an extraordinary request’ for ‘many statues of every kind of precious hard stone’, to be placed in every temple and shrine of Amon-Ra [81]. His request was granted. Meyer [82] pointed to it as an indication of his power.

 

[End of quotes]

Titles

 

Amenhotep son of Hapu, likewise, had some most imposing titles

(http://euler.slu.edu/~bart/egyptianhtml/kings%20and%20Queens/Amenhotep-Hapu.html):

 

Hereditary prince, count, sole companion, fan-bearer on the king’s right hand, chief of the king’s works even all the great monuments which are brought, of every excellent costly stone; steward of the King’s-daughter of the king’s-wife, Sitamen, who liveth; overseer of the cattle of Amon in the South and North, chief of the prophets of Horus, lord of Athribis, festival leader of Amon. ….

Several inscriptions outline his career and show how he rose through the ranks.

Amenhotep started off as a king’s scribe as mentioned on his statue:

 

I was appointed to be inferior king’s-scribe; I was introduced into the divine book, I beheld the excellent things of Thoth; I was equipped with their secrets; I opened all their [passages (?)]; one took counsel with me on all their matters.

 

After distinguishing himself, Amenhotep was promoted to the position of Scribe of Recruits.

 

… he put all the people subject to me, and the listing of their number under my control, as superior king’s-scribe over recruits. I levied the (military) classes of my lord, my pen reckoned the numbers of millions; I put them in [classes (?)] in the place of their [elders (?)]; the staff of old age as his beloved son. I taxed the houses with the numbers belonging thereto, I divided the troops (of workmen) and their houses, I filled out the subjects with the best of the captivity, which his majesty had captured on the battlefield. I appointed all their troops (Tz.t), I levied ——-. I placed troops at the heads of the way(s) to turn back the foreigners in their places.

 

Amenhotep mentions being on a campaign to Nubia.

 

I was the chief at the head of the mighty men, to smite the Nubians [and the Asiatics (?)], the plans of my lord were a refuge behind me; [when I wandered (?)] his command surrounded me; his plans embraced all lands and all foreigners who were by his side. I reckoned up the captives of the victories of his majesty, being in charge of them.

 

Later he was promoted to “Chief of all works”, thereby overseeing the building program of Pharaoh Amenhotep III

His connections to court finally led to Amenhotep being appointed as Steward to Princess-Queen Sitamen.

[End of quotes]

 

Official Relationship to Amon

 

The son of Hapu was, as we read above, “overseer of the cattle of Amon in the South and North … [and] festival leader of Amon”. ….

Now regarding Senenmut, as I wrote in “Solomon and Sheba”:

 

Historians claim ‘Steward of Amon’ was the most illustri­ous of all Senenmut’s titles. This would be fitting if he were Solomon, and Amon-Ra were the Supreme God, the ‘King of Gods’, as the Egyptians called him. Senenmut was also ‘overseer of the garden of Amon’ (see Appendix A). Like Solomon, a king who also acted as a priest, Senenmut’s chief rôle was religious. He was in charge of things pertaining to Amon and was ‘chief of all the prophets’. Solomon, at the beginning of his co-regency with David, had prayed for wisdom and a discerning mind (I Kings 3:9). On the completion of the Temple, he stood ‘before the altar of the Lord in the presence of all the assembly of Israel, [he] spread forth his hands towards heaven’ (I Kings 8:22). Likewise, Senenmut is depicted in Hatshepsut’s temple with arms up-stretched to heaven, praying to Hathor, the personification of wisdom.

 

Thomas C. Hamilton has provided this most perceptive comment about Amonism (Amunism) in a revised context (http://kabane52.tumblr.com/post/132812715270/amunism-and-atenism):

Amunism and Atenism

 

Akhenhaten is widely known as the “monotheistic Pharaoh” and his cult of the Aten has absurdly been described as the “first monotheism.” This ignores the abundant evidence that monotheism is the earliest religion of the human race, as was documented in detail by Wilhelm Schmidt in his twelve volume work on the subject, popularly summarized lately by Winfried Corduan. My intent, however, is not to complain about that. Instead, it is to present a revised view of what Atenism was on a revised chronology, largely drawing on the fascinating work of traditional Catholic scholar Damien Mackey.

I have pointed out in the past that the descriptions of Amun in Egyptian literature converge in fascinating ways with the biblical description of God. Amun-Re is a sun-god. The sun, of course, is one of the Lord’s chief symbols in Scripture, and the nations worshiped God as the “God of Heaven.” This is why the phenomenon of original monotheism is called the “sky-god” phenomenon. That a god was associated with the sun does not mean that he had always been identified with the sun. Indeed, I think the “fusion” of Amun and Re was the recovery of a pristine monotheistic religion. Just as Yahweh and El were two titles for one God, so also Amun and Re. Imhotep, whom I have identified with Joseph, served as High Priest of Re at Heliopolis.

[End of quote]

 

The career of Amenhotep son of Hapu in relation to Egypt reminds me in many ways of that of that other quasi-royal (but supposed commoner), Senenmut, or Senmut, at the time of Pharaoh Hatshepsut. Amenhotep son of Hapu is in fact so close a replica of Senenmut that I would have to think that he had modelled himself greatly on the latter.

Senenmut was to pharaoh Hatshepsut also a Great Steward, and he was to princess Neferure her mentor and steward.

So was Amenhotep son of Hapu to pharaoh Amenhotep III a Great Steward, and he was to princess Sitamun (Sitamen) her mentor and steward.

Again, as Senenmut is considered by scholars to have been a commoner, who, due to his great skills and character, rose up through the ranks to become scribe and architect and steward of Amun, so is exactly the same said about Amenhotep son of Hapu.

Each seemed to be a real ‘power behind the throne’.

Son of Hapu, like Senenmut, is thought not to have (married or to have) had any children.

 

Asa a Powerful

King of Judah

 

 

 

Part One: New Perspectives

 

 

 

 

As one might now expect from the revised chronology, the long-reigning King Asa of Judah, conventionally dated to c. 900 BC, acquires added dimensions and new contemporaries.

In this series I shall attempt to discern the extent of the influence of Asa, truly a most successful and magnificent king.

 

 

 

 

King Asa’s Contemporaries

 

  • Non-revised contemporaries

 

 

We know from the biblical accounts about King Asa of Judah in 1 Kings 15:10-24; 16:29 and in 2 Chronicles 14-16, and from well-established history, that his contemporaries were:

 

In Israel:

Jeroboam I and Nadab; Baasha and Elah; Zimri; Omri and Ahab;

 

In Syria:

Ben-Hadad I;

 

In Assyria:

Ashurnasirpal II;

 

In (Egypt)/Ethiopia:

Zerah the Ethiopian.

 

 

  • Revised (Velikovskian) contemporaries

 

Now, thanks to the fine insights of Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky (Ages in Chaos, I, 1952, and Oedipus and Akhnaton, 1960), we can know much more. We can know that the entire and well-documented period of El Amarna [EA], when pharaohs Amenhotep III and IV (Akhnaton) ruled over Egypt – conventionally but quite wrongly dated to the C15th BC – must be shifted down, holus bolus, into this same approximate era of Asa (and his descendants, Jehoshaphat and Jehoram).

That means that the myriad EA correspondents find themselves near, or exact, contemporaries of King Asa of Judah.

Now, a major one of these is the king of Amurru, Abdi-ashirta, Velikovsky’s Ben-Hadad. Others are the above-mentioned pharaohs of EA, belonging to Egypt’s 18th dynasty.

Regarding king Asa’s mighty foe, “Zerah the Ethiopian (or Cushite)”, 2 Chronicles 14:9, Velikovsky argued (in Ages in Chaos, ch. 5) that he must have been pharaoh Amenhotep II, who died a few decades before EA.

 

In Syria (Amurru):

Ben-Hadad/Abdi-ashirta;

 

In (Egypt)/Ethiopia:

Amenhotep II.

 

Putting it all together

 

Ben-Hadad

 

King Asa of Judah was prepared to renew an old alliance with Syria, in order to join forces against the troublesome Baasha, king of Israel. And the liaison proved effective (2 Chronicles 16):

 

In the six and thirtieth year of the reign of Asa Baasha king of Israel came up against Judah, and built Ramah, to the intent that he might let none go out or come in to Asa king of Judah.

Then Asa brought out silver and gold out of the treasures of the house of the Lord and of the king’s house, and sent to Benhadad king of Syria, that dwelt at Damascus, saying,

There is a league between me and thee, as there was between my father and thy father: behold, I have sent thee silver and gold; go, break thy league with Baasha king of Israel, that he may depart from me.

And Benhadad hearkened unto king Asa, and sent the captains of his armies against the cities of Israel; and they smote Ijon, and Dan, and Abelmaim, and all the store cities of Naphtali.

And it came to pass, when Baasha heard it, that he left off building of Ramah, and let his work cease.

 

Ben-Hadad would go on to become a mighty king, a master king, having later, in the time of king Ahab of Israel, “32 kings allied with him” (I Kings 20:16).

Velikovsky’s extension of the highly duplicitous Ben-Hadad to include Abdi-Ashirta of EA, I have further extended to embrace also the mighty Mitannian potentate, Tushratta Dushratta), both in my university thesis:

 

A Revised History of the Era of King Hezekiah of Judah

and its Background

 

AMAIC_Final_Thesis_2009.pdf

 

and in the more recent article:

 

Ben-Hadad I as El Amarna’s Abdi-ashirta = Tushratta

 

https://www.academia.edu/8713376/Ben-Hadad_I_as_El_Amarna_s_Abdi-ashirta_Tushratta

 

But Syro-Mitanni was by no means the extent of this shrewd king’s dominion.

We find both Ben-Hadad, in his guise as Tushratta, and his great Egyptian contemporary, Amenhotep III, dipping also into Assyria – as attested by the fact that Tushratta sent the image of Ishtar of Nineveh to Egypt, to heal Amenhotep III [EA letter 23].

A master king indeed!

But apparently pharaoh Amenhotep III also claimed to have some sort of dominion over Assyria. This is evidenced by “the inclusion of Assur (Assyria) in lists of Amenhotep III”, according to P. James and P. van der Veen, in “When did Shoshenq I Campaign in Palestine?” (with reference to Edel and Görg 2005):

https://www.academia.edu/13445166/When_did_Shoshenq_I_Campaign_in_Palestine_with_Peter_James_in_P._James_and_P._van_der_Veen_eds._Solomon_and_Shishak_BAR

 

Now this brings us to a most interesting situation.

Given, in a revised context, the contemporaneity of Asa and pharaoh Amenhotep III, ‘the Magnificent’, as he is known, if the latter’s influence had extended all the way to Assyria, then might we not expect an almighty clash between he and the extremely powerful King Asa of Judah? In “Ben-Hadad I as El Amarna’s Abdi-ashirta = Tushratta”, I had made a similar observation about EA:

 

….  Now, an apparent anomaly immediately strikes me in regard to this connection between Ben-Hadad I and Abdi-ashirta, though it is not one of Velikovsky’s making but one that pertains to the EA structure itself. It is this: Why do we never hear of a conflict

 – or perhaps an alliance – between this Abdi-ashirta and Tushratta (var. Dushratta) of Mitanni? Why, in fact, do we never hear any mention at all of these two kings together in the same EA letter? I ask this firstly because, as Campbell has shown, Abdi-ashirta and Tushratta were exact contemporaries, reigning during at least the latter part of the reign of pharaoh Amenhotep III and on into the reign of Akhnaton, and, secondly, because their territories were, at the very least, contiguous.

 

Again, D. Murphie had raised a point along such lines in his “Critique of David Rohl’s A Test of Time” (C and C Review, Oct 1997:1), that, for those who would prefer Ramesses II as the biblical “Shishak”, they would be running into the formidable problem of Ramesses II having the powerful king Asa of Judah, in all his strength, sandwiched right between himself and the pharaoh’s Hittite ally, Hattusilis. The biblical account of Asa tells nothing of this.

I shall be having more to say further on in this series about a possible relationship between pharaoh Amenhotep III and King Asa of Judah.

 

 

 

King Asa of Judah

 

————————————————————–

“As for all the other events of Asa’s reign, all his achievements, all he did and the cities he built, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Judah?”

————————————————————-

 

Asa was, for the most part, a loyal Yahwist and a most successful king of Judah, somewhat reminiscent of King Solomon himself, with his generally long and peaceful reign, but falling away to some extent at the end. We read in 2 Chronicles 14:

 

1And Abijah rested with his ancestors and was buried in the City of David. Asa his son succeeded him as king, and in his days the country was at peace for ten years.Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God. He removed the foreign altars and the high places, smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles. He commanded Judah to seek the Lord, the God of their ancestors, and to obey his laws and commands. He removed the high places and incense altars in every town in Judah, and the kingdom was at peace under him. He built up the fortified cities of Judah, since the land was at peace. No one was at war with him during those years, for the Lord gave him rest.

“Let us build up these towns,” he said to Judah, “and put walls around them, with towers, gates and bars. The land is still ours, because we have sought the Lord our God; we sought him and he has given us rest on every side.” So they built and prospered.

 

Against “Zerah the Ethiopian”

 

Far more formidable than Asa’s northern foe, Baasha, was Zerah with what may have been, until that time, the largest army ever assembled (2 Chronicles 14):

 

Asa had an army of three hundred thousand men from Judah, equipped with large shields and with spears, and two hundred and eighty thousand from Benjamin, armed with small shields and with bows. All these were brave fighting men.

Zerah the Cushite marched out against them with an army of thousands upon thousands and three hundred chariots, and came as far as Mareshah. 10 Asa went out to meet him, and they took up battle positions in the Valley of Zephathah near Mareshah.

11 Then Asa called to the Lord his God and said, “Lord, there is no one like you to help the powerless against the mighty. Help us, Lord our God, for we rely on you, and in your name we have come against this vast army. Lord, you are our God; do not let mere mortals prevail against you.”

12 The Lord struck down the Cushites before Asa and Judah. The Cushites fled, 13 and Asa and his army pursued them as far as Gerar. Such a great number of Cushites fell that they could not recover; they were crushed before the Lord and his forces. The men of Judah carried off a large amount of plunder. 14 They destroyed all the villages around Gerar, for the terror of the Lord had fallen on them. They looted all these villages, since there was much plunder there. 15 They also attacked the camps of the herders and carried off droves of sheep and goats and camels. Then they returned to Jerusalem.

 

Surely the tiny state of Judah would not have been sufficient to contain the immensity of what King Asa had now become! Especially given his alliance with the mighty Ben-Hadad I. Now there is this enigmatic biblical statement that hints at so much more (I Kings 15:23): “As for all the other events of Asa’s reign, all his achievements, all he did and the cities he built, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Judah?”

 

It is apparent, then, that there is much more to this intriguing Judaean king than we are able to read about in Kings and Chronicles, and I hope to probe further Asa’s secrets in in the course of this series.

 

Part Two:

Possible Expansion of Asa

 

 

 

 

Regarding that intriguing biblical passage, I Kings 15:23, that I quoted in Part One:

As for all the other events of Asa’s reign, all his achievements, all he did and the cities he built, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Judah?”, I am confident that there is far more to be learned about the long-reigning King Asa of Judah. “Surely the tiny state of Judah would not have been sufficient to contain the immensity of what King Asa had now become! Especially given his alliance with the mighty Ben-Hadad”.

 

 

 

Introduction

 

In Part One

https://www.academia.edu/25564194/Asa_a_Powerful_King_of_Judah._Part_One_New_Perspectives I provided a list of known contemporaries of King Asa of Judah, as well as some revised ones such as Ben-Hadad I as Abdi-ashirta/Tushratta of El Amarna [EA], and I also recalled Dr. I. Velikovsky’s suggestion that pharaoh Amenhotep II was “Zerah the Ethiopian”. Of all of these contemporaries, known or posited, only a few appear to have made a significant impact upon Asa: namely,

 

Baasha of Israel, for a limited time; and likewise

Zerah the Ethiopian; and

Ben-Hadad I (including his alter egos), Asa’s major contemporary.

 

An inevitable consequence of having the long-reigning Asa now situated in the EA period is that he must also have been contemporaneous with the similarly long-reigning pharaoh Amenhotep III of Egypt’s 18th dynasty. Thus I wrote:

 

Now this brings us to a most interesting situation.

Given, in a revised context, the contemporaneity of Asa and pharaoh Amenhotep III, ‘the Magnificent’, as he is known, if the latter’s influence had extended all the way to Assyria, then might we not expect an almighty clash between he and the extremely powerful King Asa of Judah?

[End of quote]

 

That is really the burning question for this series!

I also wrote, regarding the might of Ben-Hadad I (= Tushratta of Mitanni):

 

But Syro-Mitanni was by no means the extent of this shrewd king’s dominion.

We find both Ben-Hadad, in his guise as Tushratta, and his great Egyptian contemporary, Amenhotep III, dipping also into Assyria – as attested by the fact that Tushratta sent the image of Ishtar of Nineveh to Egypt, to heal Amenhotep III [EA letter 23].

….

But apparently pharaoh Amenhotep III also claimed to have some sort of dominion over Assyria. This is evidenced by “the inclusion of Assur (Assyria) in lists of Amenhotep III”, according to P. James and P. van der Veen, in “When did Shoshenq I Campaign in Palestine?” (with reference to Edel and Görg 2005):

https://www.academia.edu/13445166/When_did_Shoshenq_I_Campaign_in_Palestine_with_Peter_James_in_P._James_and_P._van_der_Veen_eds._Solomon_and_Shishak_BAR

 

The era of EA’s shrewd operator, Tushratta, supposedly C14th BC, is found to have been closely contemporaneous, archaeologically, with that of Ashurnasirpal II of the C9th BC. Emmet Sweeney has provided art-historical and archaeological evidence to suggest such a contemporaneity of eras.

 

Need for a Revised Archaeology and Art History

 

Sweeney asserts that the archaeological evidence points to the contemporaneity of pharaoh Amenhotep III (of EA) and Ashurnasirpal II of Assyria

http://www.emmetsweeney.net/article-directory/item/54-shalmaneser-iii-and-egypt.html

 

…. Ashurnasirpal II was also a great builder. He too raised monuments throughout Assyria. These included a new capital named Calah. In Calah archaeologists found numerous artifacts of Egyptian manufacture. There were, for example, many scarabs of the latter Eighteenth Dynasty, especially from the time of Amenhotap III. (See Austen Layard, Discoveries in the Ruins of Nineveh and Babylon (London, 1853) p. 282).

 

[End of quote]

 

There is so much evidence to suggest that conventional archaeology is in error by centuries, and that the so-called ‘Middle’ Assyro-Babylonian period needs to be folded with the ‘Neo’ Assyro-Babylonian period. To point out just some of many examples that I gave in my thesis:

 

A Revised History of the Era of King Hezekiah of Judah

and its Background

 

https://www.academia.edu/3822220/Thesis_2_A_Revised_History_of_the_Era_of_King_Hezekiah_of_Judah_and_its_Background

 

  1. 18:

 

  • How to explain the fact that the material and technological culture of the C9th BC Assyrian kings, beginning with Ashurnasirpal II, closely matches that of the 18th and 19th dynasties in Egypt? (The same goes for the C8th BC culture of the 25th Ethiopian dynasty).

 

  • Why do bronzes made in Cyprus during the C12th BC frequently occur elsewhere in C9th or later deposits?
  • How is it that the objects of Egyptian pharaohs from the 10th-9th centuries are always found abroad in contexts hundreds of years later?

 

  1. 180

 

There (Table I) I am able to fold C12th BC Assyro-Babylonian and (three successive) Elamite kings with C8th BC Assyro-Babylonian and (three successive) Elamite kings.

 

 

And in more recent articles I have continued that folding.

 

  1. For Mesopotamia:

 

Bringing New Order to Mesopotamian History and Chronology

 

https://www.academia.edu/8042890/Bringing_New_Order_to_Mesopotamian_History_and_Chronology

and:

 

Hammurabi and Zimri-Lim as Contemporaries of Solomon

 

https://www.academia.edu/18306131/Hammurabi_and_Zimri-Lim_as_Contemporaries_of_Solomon

 

  1. For Egypt:

 

Ramses II Re-Dated by Byblite Evidence

 

https://www.academia.edu/8945565/Ramses_II_Re-Dated_by_Byblite_Evidence

 

While E. Sweeney has made some terrific points in his various books and articles, it needs to be noted, though, that he, as a one-time follower of the radical professor G. Heinsohn, can occasionally overlook real stratigraphical sequences.

  1. Mitcham nailed Sweeney on one or two of these in his critique of Sweeney in 1988 (which may not necessarily reflect the latter’s views today):

Support for Heinsohn’s Chronology is Misplaced

http://saturniancosmology.org/files/.cdrom/journals/workshop/w1988no1/07heins.htm

 

Mitcham introduced this article as follows:

 

Emmet J. Sweeney is a bold man. Having applauded that section of Velikovsky’s proposed historical revision (19th = 26th Dynasty and Hittites = Chaldaeans – in C & C Workshop 1986:2, p.38) which has been dismissed by the revision’s supporters and critics alike as a piece of fiction, we now find him in favour of an equally implausible set of theses. I am referring to Sweeney’s review of Gunnar Heinsohn’s “Mesopotamian Historiography” in C & C Workshop 1987:2, pp.20-22. In rushing to defend the Heinsohn theories, Sweeney demonstrates his superficial grasp of the subject in general and his total disregard for the evidence of the Ancient Chronicles and Royal Inscriptions in particular. These must form the basis of any attempt to revise Mesopotamian chronology [1]. In fact one is inclined to suspect that Sweeney must be unaware of texts such as those compiled by Grayson and Brinkman.

 

Major Alter-Egos

 

Sweeney lists four “alter-ego” identifications on which Heinsohn’s arguments are based:

 

1). Old Babylonians = Persians in Babylon 2). Amorites = Persians 3). Akkadians = Assyrians (neo-Assyrian period) 4). Sumerians = Chaldaeans

[End of quote]

 

 

Part Three:

As Amenhotep son of Hapu

 

 

 

The burning question of this series has become how to account for the close proximity of the mighty and long-reigning King Asa of Judah and the similarly mighty and long-reigning pharaoh Amenhotep III.

How did these two interrelate as we should expect that they must have?

 

 

 

That the glorious career of Amenhotep son of Hapu followed closely a pattern previously marked out in the 18th dynasty by Senenmut (my Solomon) became apparent in:

 

Senenmut (Senmut) and Amenhotep son of Hapu

 

https://www.academia.edu/25566209/Senenmut_Senmut_and_Amenhotep_son_of_Hapu

 

And one could add many more comparisons here.

Amenhotep, as with Senenmut, is thought (perhaps quite wrongly) not to have had any children.

 

Now, if a King of Jerusalem (and Israel), Solomon, could serve as a high official, including Steward of Amun, to an Egyptian potentate, Hatshepsut, mentoring her daughter, Neferure, then it may well follow that Amenhotep son of Hapu, who was also a high official to an Egyptian potentate, Amenhotep III, mentoring his daughter, Sitamen (Sitamun), was likewise a prestigious King of Jerusalem.

And, since we have assessed that King Asa was contemporaneous with this Amenhotep III, then I tentatively identify the pharaoh’s Steward, Amenhotep son of Hapu, as Asa of Judah.

Hapu, the father of Amenhotep, could perhaps represent Abiu (= Hapu?), the Greek version (᾿Αβιοὺ) of the name of Asa’s father, Abijah or Abijam.

King Asa’s wicked grandson, Jehoram, has already been well identified historically:

 

King Abdi-Hiba of Jerusalem Locked in as a ‘Pillar’ of Revised History

 

https://www.academia.edu/7772239/King_Abdi-Hiba_of_Jerusalem_Locked_in_as_a_Pillar_of_Revised_History

 

Now, presuming that Asa himself was Amenhotep son of Hapu, we would need only to know the name of the latter’s chief son, perhaps, to be able to identify also King Jehoshaphat of Judah.

 

Whilst 2 Kings and 2 Chronicles combined do not supply us with a great deal of information about King Asa of Judah, perhaps the records of Amenhotep son of Hapu (as Asa?) will provide the key for us to that tantalising verse (I Kings 15:23): “As for all the other events of Asa’s reign, all his achievements, all he did and the cities he built, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Judah?”

 

Amenhotep son of Hapu was the architect of, for one, the Colossi of Memnon.

 

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amenhotep,_son_of_Hapu

Amenhotep, son of Hapu, was an architect, a priest, a scribe, and a public official, who held a number of offices under Amenhotep III.

He is said to have been born at the end of Thutmose III‘s reign, in the town of Athribis (modern Banha in the north of Cairo). His father was Hapu, and his mother Itu.[1] He was a priest and a Scribe of Recruits (organizing the labour and supplying the manpower for the Pharaoh’s projects, both civilian and military). He was also an architect and supervised several building projects, among them Amenhotep III‘s mortuary temple at western Thebes, of which only two statues remain nowadays, known as the Colossi of Memnon. He may also have been the architect of the Temple of Soleb in Nubia.[2] According to some reliefs in the tomb of Ramose, he may have died in the 31st year of Amenhotep III.

 

 

 

21st May 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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