1300-1200 BCE

Moses and the Exodus

Moses And King Tutankhamun, 1332 -1323 BCE

Deuteronomy 34:7
Moses was a hundred and twenty years old when he died…

According to the Merneptah Stele, the Israelites are in the Land of Israel in 1207 BCE. Working backwards, Moses, who lived 120 years, was alive at the time of King Tut (1332–1323 BCE). 

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Egyptian Museum, Cairo

The Pharaoh's Daughter Finds Moses

Exodus 2:10

She brought the child to Pharaoh’s daughter, and he became her son. She named him Moses…

The Finding of Moses  by Rembrandt, The Morgan Library and Museum, New York 

Pharaoh Rameses II, 
“The Great”
1279 - 1213 BCE

A consensus of archaeologists suggest that the Pharaoh of the Exodus was Rameses “The Great.” 

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Mummy of Rameses the Great, Egyptian Museum, Cairo

Facial Reconstruction of Ramesses II

Scientists at ​Liverpool John Moores University and Cairo University reveal the face of Ramesses II using CT scans and software that allow accurate facial reconstruction. 

FaceLab, Liverpool John Moores University, UK

Exodus 2:11
He (Moses) saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his kinsmen. 
Wall Painting from the Tomb of Menna, Thebes, Egypt, c. 1350 BCE

Moses at the 
Burning Bush

by Rembrandt

Exodus 3:3-4
Moses said, "I must turn aside to look at this marvelous sight; why doesn’t the bush burn up?"

When the LORD saw that he had turned aside to look, God called to him out of the bush: "Moses! Moses!" He answered, "Here I am." 

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Private Collection

The Louvre, Paris

Quota for Brick-making

Exodus 5:18
Pharaoh:  “…you must deliver the quota of bricks.” 

The Leather Scroll, 1274 BCE
“Yupa, son of Urhiya, (quota of ) 2,000 bricks
1,630 arrived, deficit 370” 

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Straw for Brick-making

Exodus 5:18
Pharaoh:  “So go now and work; for you will be given no straw…” 

Papyrus Anastasi IV, 1250 BCE

“. . . and there are neither men to make bricks, nor straw.” 

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The British Museum, London

Let My People Go

Exodus 10:3

So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh, “This is what the LORD, the God of the Hebrews, says: ‘How long will you refuse to humble yourself before Me?  Let My people go, so that they may worship Me.'”

Moses and Aaron before Pharaoh by Rembrandt

The Ten Plagues

The Ten Commandments, 1956, Paramount Pictures

Slaves Escaping into Sinai Are Seen at Migdol

 Numbers 33:5-7
“The Israelites set out from Rameses… and they encamped before Migdol.” 

Papyrus Anastasi V, c. 1250 BCE
“I was sent forth from the broad halls of the palace... following after two slaves. When I reached the fortress, they told me that the scout had come from the desert saying that they had passed the walled place north of the Migdol.”  

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The British Museum, London

Gemäldegalerie, Staatliche Museum, Berlin

Moses Breaking the Tablets of the Law
by Rembrandt

Exodus 34:1, 34:28
“Carve two tablets of stone like the first​ and I will inscribe upon the tablets the words that were on the first tablets, which you shattered."

And he wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the Ten Commandments.

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The Ten Commandments
In the Dead Sea Scrolls

Photo by Ardon Bar-Hama
Israel Museum, Jerusalem

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Moses by Michelangelo

  Exodus 34:30   

Aaron and all the Israelites looked at Moses, and behold, his face was radiant. And they were afraid to approach him.

In Jerome’s Vulgate (382 CE), “radiance” is translated as “horns.”  Michelangelo’s Moses is depicted with horns on his head.

For centuries, even in America, many people thought that Jews had horns, due to Michelangelo’s Moses.


Moses Cannot Enter the Promised Land of Israel

Deuteronomy 32:48-52
That very day the LORD spoke to Moses: “Ascend… to Mount Nebo… and view the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the Israelites as their holding.

…You may view the land from a distance, but you shall not enter it—the land that I am giving to the Israelite people.” 

Egyptian Museum, Cairo

The Merneptah Stele, 1207 BCE

“Canaan is plundered… Israel is laid waste, its grain is not.” 

Egyptian Pharaoh Merneptah recorded his conquest of the people, "Israel" on this victory stele.  Working backwards, if the Israelites wandered the wilderness for 40 years, as told in the Bible, then the Exodus could have occurred around 1250 BCE, during the reign of Rameses the Great (1279-1213 BCE). 

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"Israel" as written on the Merneptah Stele in hieroglyphs

The Merneptah or Israelite Stele:
The Israelites Are in the Land of Israel

PBS, Nova, “The Bible’s Buried Secrets" 

לְאַחַר שֶׁשָּׁאוּל הַמֶּלֶךְ וּבְנוֹ יְהוֹנָתָן מֵתִים בַּקְּרָב, פּוֹנִים רָאשֵׁי הַשְּׁבָטִים לְדָוִד, שֶׁמָּלַךְ כְּבָר שֶׁבַע שָׁנִים וָחֵצִי בְּחֶבְרוֹן. הֵם מְמַנִּים אוֹתוֹ לְמֶלֶךְ עַל הַקּוֹנְפֵדֵרַצְיָה הַשִּׁבְטִית הַמְּאֻחֶדֶת שֶׁל יִשְׂרָאֵל.     

דָּוִד הַמֶּלֶךְ פּוֹנֶה מִיָּד לְכִוּוּן יְרוּשָׁלַיִם, אַחַת הֶעָרִים הָאַחֲרוֹנוֹת שֶׁטֶּרֶם נִכְבְּשָׁה בְּמַהֲלַךְ כִּבּוּשׁ הָאָרֶץ בִּידֵי בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל.   דָּוִד בּוֹחֵר בִּירוּשָׁלַיִם מֵאַרְבַּע סִבּוֹת עִקָּרִיּוֹת: מַיִם, בִּטָּחוֹן, אִחוּד וְשִׁלְטוֹן קַרְקָעִי נֵיטְרָלִי, אַךְ חָשׁוּב מֵהַכֹּל, בִּגְלַל הַקְּדוֹשָׁה שֶׁל יְרוּשָׁלַיִם הַטְּבוּעָה בַּמָּקוֹם הַנִּבְחָר, שֶׁבּוֹ יִבָּנֶה בֵּית הַמִּקְדָּשׁ הָעֲתִידִי.     

לְפָנֶיךָ סִרְטוֹן הַמְּסַפֵּר אֶת הַסִּבּוֹת שֶׁל דָּוִד בְּכִבּוּשׁ הָעִיר.