Monday, December 3, 2018

Solar Symbolism Among the R1 Peoples

Alice C. Linsley

The 6-prong solar symbol is an ancient image that has been found from Ethiopia to England and from Pakistan to Galilee. It testifies to the importance of the sun as a symbol of divine authority. The image was found among the Celts of the northern Iberian Peninsula. It is seen here on one of these 9th century BC artifacts (coin on top right).

The same image is found on Balkan pottery. Her is appears on enameled terracotta tableware, 14th-15th century, found at Studenica monastery complex in western Serbia. The rosette is sometimes called "Perun's flower."

The same symbol is found on this wooden entrance in Romania.

These two amulets were discovered in 1985 at the archaeological site of Mehrgarh in Balochistan, western Pakistan. The amulets date to the 3rd millennium B.C. and represent the wheel or solar chariot of the Supreme God.

This 6-prong star or rosette appears on ancient Jewish ossuaries. This was the solar boat of the Creator, the vehicle of Light that carries the dead to the place of rest until the Last Day.

Stone ossuary chest used for secondary burial of bones

The 2,000-year-old ossuary shown above belonged to a daughter of the Caiaphas family of high priests. It is marked with the 6 pointed star and has an Aramaic inscription that says, “Miriam Daughter of Yeshua Son of Caiaphas, Priests of Ma’aziah from Beth Imri.” The inscription dates to the time of the Second Temple.

The six prong star is also found on the ossuary of Joseph Caiaphas, the high priest (shown below).

The merkaba as chariot spokes within a circle appears to be an Iron Age version of Ra's solar boat. The Creator was believed to mount the sun as a chariot and ride the winds, making His circuit. This speaks about God's sovereignty over all the Earth.

It is likely that this same image appeared on the Ark of the Covenant. In the Ethiopian Church a replica of the Ark (called Tabot) is decorated at the center with the 6-prong star inside a circle.

The same image appears on a tomb at Banais, Israel, one of the sources of the Jordan river. There is a large cave and various archaeological sites with pools of water running beneath and large cliffs rising above.

The symbol appears on the top and sides of the Magdala Stone (below) which was found in the western shores of the Sea of Galilee in September 2009.

Here is another view of the Magdala Stone.

Related reading: Ossuary of Miriam, Daughter of Yeshua; A Tent for the Sun; Solar Imagery of the Proto-Gospel; Sun Symbolism and Blood Guilt; Horned Altars and Horned Sacred Vessels

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Horned Altars and Horned Sacred Vessels

Horned altar found during excavations at Gath

Alice C. Linsley

The Hebrew ruler-priest clans of Genesis 4, 5, 10, 11, 25 and 36 intermarried. Abraham and his ruler-priest ancestors were a caste of priests who traced descent by both the maternal and paternal bloodlines. Their endogamous marriage practice means that these words should be taken literally: "For me you shall be a kingdom of priests, a holy nation." (Ex. 19:6). This is a historical reality that has been neglected by Bible scholars. The priesthood of old is the basis for the Church's priesthood and should not be generalized to all believers, as was done by the Reformer Martin Luther.

The Horite Hebrew dispersed widely in the service of the "mighty men of old" and the artifacts of their religion are found wherever they resided. These artifacts include ritual flint knives, metal and clay objects of ceremonial importance, and stone altars.

They practiced animal sacrifice on stone altars. In the Harappan culture the altars were temporary and often in the shape of a falcon, the totem of Horus. Horus was the son of Ra. Among the Akkadians he was called Enki and his father was called Ani. The Shulba Sutras state that "he who desires heaven is to construct a fire-altar in the form of a falcon."

At the Harappan water shrines of Kalibangan and Lothal, numerous fire altars have been discovered. The Dravidian word Har-appa means "Horus is father." The falcon was a symbol of divine kingship in hieroglyphs as early a 3000 BC. Here is further evidence of the spread of Horite Hebrew religion from the Nile Valley into India where the cow continues to be regarded as a sacred animal.

The horns of the cow were a sacred symbol for the Horite Hebrew. The horns represented the power of God. Both Joab and Adonijah found themselves on the losing side of a political struggle and fled to the LORD for protection, taking hold of the horns. It was an appeal for divine aid and mercy.

Abraham's Nilo-Saharan ancestors venerated their long-horn cows. The Y of the horns was regarded as a cradle for the Sun, and the Sun was the emblem of the creator and his son.

Hathor, the mother of Horus, is shown wearing a crown of cow horns in which the Sun rests. The Y indicated that the person was divinely overshadowed and this indicted that the person was appointed for service.

The Canaanite Y symbol designated a deified "son" of God, which is why it appears in the names of many Biblical rulers: Yaqtan (Joktan); Yishmael (Ishmael); Yishbak; Yitzak (Isaac); Yacob (Jacob); Yosef (Joseph); Yetro (Jethro); Yeshai (Jesse) and Yeshua (Joshua/Jesus). 

The Y-shaped headdress of the Somali nomads is called barki and refers to divine blessing upon the wearer. The word corresponds to the Hebrew word birka which is the blessing upon food, oil or wine or upon a person.

Many of the world's oldest coins show animals with horns. Alexander the Great had coins minted that showed him with the ram's horns on his head (show above). These speak of the divine appointment of the rulers for whom the coins and royal seals were made.

The ancient Nilotic Annu/Ainu were priests associated with the shrine at Heliopolis (Biblical On), one of the most prestigious of the ancient world. It was known a iunu, place of pillars, because the temples and shrines had many pillars.  The priests were called "Tera-neter," and Tera/Terah is the title held by Abraham's father.

Heliopolis is the Greek name and it means "City of the Sun." The Habiru served as priests at On. Joseph married a daughter of the priest of Heliopolis. It was an exceptionally prestigious shrine city in the ancient world. The pyramids at Giza, Abusir and Saqqara were aligned to the obelisk of On.

The ancient Sun temples were called O'piru. O'piru is a variant of Hapiru and Habiru, and all these reference an archaic priestly caste in ancient texts. The word Habiru is rendered "Hebrew" in English Bibles. 

In the ancient world, a temple was considered the mansion (hâît) or the house (pirû) of the deity. The shrines and temples had an east-facing entrance and the priests faced the rising Sun whenthey offered their prayers and oblations. The Sun was the emblem of the Creator among Abraham's ancestors, and it appears that the Habiru had dispersed widely by 14,000 B.C.

Tera is the Japanese word for priest and the evidence of artifacts, genetics and linguistics suggests a connection between the Annu of the Nile and the Ainu of Northern Japan and Okinawa. It is evident that these ancient peoples were sea-faring. The Ainu word for water is aka, which corresponds to asta, the Old Nubian word for water.

Study of the Ainu Micmac hieroglyphics in Vermont and the Eastern seaboard of Canada strike a blow to isolationist theories and reveals "ancient contact across great oceans."

The genetic mapping of Cavalli-Sforza indicates a pattern of expansion from the Sea of Japan towards eastern Asia. This came long after the expansion from Africa (100,000 and 70,000 years before the present).

The grandson of an Ainu elder living in Eastern Canada reports that not all the native people of North America came via the land bridge from Siberia. His Miqmaq people came via Scandinavia, a fact that has been confirmed by DNA studies (Haplogroup X2b5). This explains the common clothing style and decorative motifs and the close resemblance of the signs in the Ainu and Habiru/Hebrew scripts (shown above).

Jomon vessel dated to the Middle Period, (3000–2000 BC).
Jomon sacred horned vessel
3000–2000 BC 
Sailko/Wikimedia Commons
Nyland (2001) found that many place names and common objects in Hebrew are closely related to the proto-Saharan words. These would have been used by Abraham's Nilo-Saharan ancestors. In ancient Egyptian tera-ntr refers to a ruler-priest and among the Ainu tera means priest. Abraham's father was "Terah" and his ancestors were from the Upper Nile Valley.

Recent DNA studies reveal that the Ainu of Hokkaido and the Ryukyuans of Okinawa have a closer genetic affinity than either group has to the Japanese. It is likely that these populations which have practiced clan endogamy retain cultural and physical characteristics of the earlier Jomon who had dispersed throughout the various islands of Japan.

As the point of origin for the ancestors of the Jomon was the Nile Valley we would expect to find some common features in the artefacts of the descendants of the Nilotic Ainu and the Japanese Ainu.

The Jomon horned vessels of Japan are of special interest because they resemble the horned altars of Abraham's Horite ruler-priest caste. The vessel shown (right) would have had a ritual use.

The tree of life motif is found on the Jomon vessel (above) in Japan and the Iron Age horned altar (below) found in Israel. Other common motifs include serpents, solar boats, circles, and diagonal hatch marks. The diagonal marks are found on the world's oldest known human artifacts.

Altar Rehov Iron Age II, 10th century BCE Pottery H: 49; W: 32.7 cm Israel Antiquities Authority:

Jomon pottery has been found throughout the islands of the Japanese archipelago. Some pieces date as early as 14,000 BC. The Jomon and Ainu are probably related to the Nilotic Anu who moved out of Africa, beginning about 20,000 years ago.

The Asia-Africa connection is found in Y-DNA Haplogroup DE. DE is unique because it is distributed in several geographically distinct clusters. Immediate subclade, haplogroup D, is normally found only in eastern Asia, and the other immediate subclade, haplogroup E, is common in Africa, Europe, and the Middle East.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

The Writing System of Menes

"Upon this first...rule of reason, that in order to learn you must desire to learn, and in so desiring not be satisfied with what you already incline to believe, there follows one corollary which itself deserves to be inscribed upon every wall of the city of philosophy: Do not block the way of inquiry."--Charles Sanders Peirce, 1896

Alice C. Linsley

In Abraham's time there were about 750 hieroglyphs. Only about 500 signs were commonly used. However in the time of Menes the first lawgiver, there may have been as many as 1000. Archaeology Magazine reported (1999) that the earliest Egyptian glyphs date to 3400 BC, the time of Menes, which challenges "the commonly held belief that early logographs, pictographic symbols representing a specific place, object, or quantity, first evolved into more complex phonetic symbols in Mesopotamia."

Menes was the first to unite the peoples of the Nile Valley. He is shown as the first in the procession of ancient lawgivers in the South Wall Frieze of the United States Supreme Court. His was called the Law of Tehut. Menes (c. 3200 BC) and the kings after him bore Horus names. They were Horite ruler-priests whose wisdom and skill was still remembered in the times of the Egyptian historian Manetho (3rd century BC) and the Greek historian Diodorus Siculus (1st century BC).

The word hiero-gylphs refers to the symbols used by priest scribes, an ancient world caste in service to the rulers. These appear to have been clans designated by the prefix Ar. Israelites associated by their names with the Ar patrimony include Aroch (1 Chr 7:39, Ezr 2:5, Neh 6:18, Neh 7:10) and Ariel (Ezr 8:16, Isa 29:1, Isa 29:1, Isa 29:2, Isa 29:2, Isa 29:7). Ariel means “Scribe/Messenger of God.” So it appears that the Ar clans were scribes or messengers. This is further suggested by the name Ar-vad. Vad means “to speak” in Sanskrit. The association of the name Ar with the scribal caste is further demonstrated by the discovery of Aramaic scrolls from Arsames, the satrap, to his Egyptian administrator Psamshek and to an Egyptian ruler named Nekht-Hor. (A.T. Olmstead, History of the Persian Empire, Chicago, 1948, pp.116-117)

Egyptian scribe
(c. 2494 to 2345 BC)

In 1999, C. Peust recognized the likelihood of an Old Nubian-Meroitic connection. He claimed that the Meroitic script was used to write two distinct languages, that of the Tanyideamani and Akinidad funerary stelae and that of the Kharamadoye inscription. Kharamadoye was the ruler representative of the Nubian deity called Ariteñ, perhaps the patron deity of scribes. Khar is a form of Har and refers to Horus.

Meroitic is an alphasyllabary script. It has signs for syllables consisting of consonants plus a and for initial vowels and syllables which have vowels other than the default a. This type of writing system is represented by various ancient scripts including Old Nubian, Old Persian cuneiform, Kharoshti (related to Aramaic), Brahmi, and Ethiopian Ge'ez.
When Jean-Francois Champollion deciphered hieroglyphs using the Rosetta Stone, he thought there were 864 different signs in total, but today it is thought that the earliest hieroglyphs numbered about 1,000. When Champollion deciphered hieroglyphs and hieratic, he matched the signs with the later Coptic writing and converted them into Coptic. Champollion was fluent in Coptic. He was then able to see if a Coptic word existed that was fairly similar to his ancient Egyptian word, and he could translate the word into French. This was not always accurate, because the Coptic or Ge'ez had changed.
Ancient Egyptian is a branch of the Afroasiatic language family. Written records of the Egyptian language have been dated from about 3400 BC, making it one of the oldest recorded languages known, outside of Sumerian. Today the national language of Egypt is Egyptian Arabic, which replaced Coptic as the language of daily life after the Muslim conquest of Egypt. Memphitic or Bohairic Coptic is still the liturgical language of the Coptic Church. The Bohairic dialect originated in the western Nile Delta during the 3rd century A.D.
Egyptian has many biradical roots, in contrast to the Semitic preference for triradical roots. In this regard, Ancient Egyptian appears to be more archaic.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Commentaries on Genesis

Here is a list of commentaries on Genesis. They are listed alphabetically by author's or editor's last name. A short list of recommended first books on the topic is here.

Robert Alter, ed.
New York: W.W. Norton, 1996.

The Book of Genesis
Basil Ferris Campbell Atkinson
Chicago: Moody Press, 1957.

Genesis 37-50: A Handbook on the Hebrew Texts
David W. Baker and Jason A. Riley
Baylor Press, 2014.

Genesis: An Expositional Commentary
James Montgomery Boice
Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books, 1998.

Genesis as Dialogue: A Literary, Historical, and Theological Commentary
Thomas L Brodie
Oxford, England: Oxford University Press, 2001.

Genesis: A Bible Commentary for Teaching and Preaching
Walter Brueggemann
Atlanta: John Knox Press, 1982.

Commentary on the Book of Genesis, Part 1 (Adam to Noah)
Umberto Cassuto
Jerusalem: Hebrew University Press, 1961.

Commentary on the Book of Genesis, Part II (Noah to Abraham)
Umberto Cassuto
Jerusalem: Hebrew University Press, 1961.

(This volume includes a Fragment of Part III. Cassuto died before he was able to complete his Commentary on the Pentateuch.)

Original Sinners: A New Interpretation of Genesis
John R. Coats
Kindle E-book, 2009.

Commentary on Genesis: The First Book of Moses
James Burton Coffman
Abilene, Texas: ACU Press, 1985.

David W Cotter
Collegeville, Minnesotta: Liturgical Press, 2003.

Genesis 1:1-25:18
John D. Currid
Darlington: Evangelical Press, 2003.

Genesis 1-11
Robert Davidson
Cambridge University Press, 1973.

Book of Genesis: A Commentary
Samuel Rolles Driver
London: Methuen, 1911.

In the Beginning: The True Message of the Genesis Origin Stories
Lawrence R. Farley
Ancient Faith Publishing, 2018

Charles T. Fritsch
Richmond, Virginia: John Knox, 1959.

The International Critical Commentary on Genesis, Chronicles, and the Psalms
Kemper Fullerton
Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1912.

The Book of Genesis
Calvin Goodspeed; D. M. Welton
Philadelphia: American Baptist Publication Society, 1909.

The Legends of Genesis: The Biblical Saga and History
Hermann Gunkel; William Herbert Carruth
New York: Schocken Books, 1970.

The Book of Genesis: Chapters 1-17
Victor P. Hamilton
Grand Rapids, Michigan: W.B. Eerdmans, 1990.

Reading Genesis: Ten Methods
Edited by Ronald Hendel

The Women of Genesis
Sharon Jeansonne
Minneapolis: Fortress, 1990.

The Story of Joseph (Genesis 37; 39-47): A Philological Commentary
Isaac Jerusalmi
Cincinnati: Hebrew Union College--Jewish Institute of Religion, 1965.
(Recently up-dated, but requires ability to read Hebrew.)

The Beginning of Wisdom: Reading Genesis
Leon R. Kass
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2003.

A Commentary on Genesis: The Book of Beginnings
Martin Kessler; Karel Adriaan Deurloo
New York: Paulist Press, 2004.

Genesis: An Introduction and Commentary
Derek Kidner
Chicago: Inter-varsity Press, 1967.

Before Abraham Was: The Unity of Genesis 1-11
Kikawada, Isaac M. and A. Quinn. 
Nashville: Abingdon, 1985.

Genesis: An Expositional and Devotional Commentary
William Klock
Lulu, 2014

How to Read Genesis
Tremper Longman III
Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 2005.

Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, Vol. 1
Andrew Louth. ed.
Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 2001.

Commentary on Genesis
Martin Luther
Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 1958.

Discovering Genesis and the Origins of the Biblical World
David Neiman

A commentary upon the first book of Moses, called Genesis
Simon Patrick
London: Printed for Ri. Chiswell, at the Rose and Crown in St. Paul's Church-Yard, 1698.

Creation and the Patriarchal Histories
Patrick Henry Reardon
Ben Lomond, California: Conciliar Press, 2008.

Chi Rho commentary on Genesis
J T E Renner
Adelaide, S. Australia: Lutheran Pub. House, 1984.

Understanding Genesis
Nahum M. Sarna
Penguin Random House, 1970.

Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture, Vol. 2
Mark Sheridan, ed.
Downer's Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 2002

Genesis (Volume I in the Anchor Bible series )
E.A. Speiser
Garden City, New York: Doubleday, 1964.

Pauline A. Viviano
Collegeville, Minneapolis: Liturgical Press, 1985.

Gerhard Von Rad
Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1972.

Genesis: A commentary
Bruce K Waltke; Cathi J Fredricks
Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 2001.

The Lost World of Genesis One: Ancient Cosmology and the Origins Debate
John H. Walton
Downer's Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2009.

Genesis 1-15
Gordon J Wenham
Waco, Texas: Word Books, 1987.

Genesis : A Practical Commentary
Claus Westermann; David Green
Grand Rapids, Michigan: W.B. Eerdmans, 1987.

Genesis 1-11: A commentary
Claus Westermann
Minneapolis: Augsburg Pub. House, 1984.

Genesis 12-36: A commentary
Claus Westermann
Minneapolis: Augsburg Pub. House, 1985.

Genesis 37-50: A commentary
by Claus Westermann
Minneapolis: Augsburg Pub. House, 1986.

by Thomas Whitelaw; F W Farrar; Henry Cotterill; et al
New York: Funk & Wagnalls, 1913.

Genesis: A Bible Commentary in the Wesleyan Tradition
by Wilbur Glenn Williams
Indianapolis, Indiana: Wesleyan Pub. House, 2000.

The Book of Genesis: An Introductory Commentary
Ronald F. Youngblood
Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House, 1991.

Genesis: The Beginning of Desire
Avivah G. Zornberg
New York: Doubleday, 1996

Related reading: How to Read a Commentary; Reviews of commentaries by Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Wesley, Herman Gunkel, Leon Kass and Patrick Reardon, A Little About Sources

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Biblical Anthropology and Antecedents

The Het/Heth Temples (Gen. 10:15, Gen. 23:2-11) Heth also refers to the Hittites.

Set/Seti/Seth of the Anu shrines of the Lower Nile/Delta 

Tera-neter refers to a priest of God. Abraham's father was called Tera/Terah.

Alice C. Linsley

I receive e-mail and Facebook communications from people every week telling me that they have found the approach of Biblical Anthropology helpful in gaining a better understanding of the Bible. Often they have questions that I attempt to answer, and sometimes they provide me with extremely important data that advances this research.

In these conversations I've noticed that Evangelical Protestants tend to ignore the Old Testament and they struggle to find Jesus Christ in Genesis, but young Jews mostly get it! They recognize that there are Messianic references throughout the Hebrew Scriptures (Tanakh).

Both groups recognize that the ancestry of Jesus, as it is set out in Luke and Matthew, involves mothers who were not Jewish. This is troubling, since Jewishness is traced through the mother. It is troubling also because it raises questions about Jewish claims of racial purity.

Cherry picking verses to support one's agenda is dishonest and easily discredited when we take a more empirical approach to the study of the Bible.

Feminist interpretations that would have us believe the biblical Hebrew to be patriarchal and oppressive are exposed as shallow when we examine the social structure of the biblical Hebrew through the lens of cultural anthropology.

Biblical anthropology can be upsetting. The focus on antecedents of the biblical Hebrew and the Messianic Faith exposes us to data that doesn't always support the dominant narratives of Jews and Christians.

It is troubling that the Messiah is foreshadowed in Nilotic texts that predate the Bible by about 1000 years. An example is passage 48 in the Coffin Texts. Here we find the words of Psalm 110, a Messianic reference:
"I am Horus, the great Falcon upon the ramparts of the house of him of the hidden name. My flight has reached the horizon. I have passed by the gods of Nut. I have gone further than the gods of old. Even the most ancient bird could not equal my very first flight. I have removed my place beyond the powers of Set, the foe of my father Osiris. No other god could do what I have done. I have brought the ways of eternity to the twilight of the morning. I am unique in my flight. My wrath will be turned against the enemy of my father Osiris and I will put him beneath my feet in my name of 'Red Cloak'."

The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts provide a great deal of information about the Father-Son relationship of Ra/Ani and Horus/Enki. The Father and Son are one and co-equal. Horus is the one said to rise from the dead on the third day.  Horus was the divine patron of the high kings and the righteous rulers hoped for bodily resurrection.

Horus who was pierced in the side, died, and rose. The expectation that the Righteous Son would not remain in the grave is expressed in Psalm 16:10: "For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. The final enemy is death. Psalm 110: The Lord says to my Lord: "Sit at My right hand until I make Your enemies a footstool for Your feet."

Both Evangelicals and Jews are struggling with antecedents and would benefit from the findings of Biblical Anthropology. Both groups rely on many outdated and often conflicting interpretations from rabbis, pastors, the Talmud, and Bible commentaries. It would be wiser for them to set these aside and simply read the Bible from cover to cover.

There is a reason this book has survived, and has been translated into more languages than any other book. David Noel Freedman once said: “The Hebrew Bible is the one artifact from antiquity that not only maintained its integrity but continues to have a vital, powerful effect thousands of years later.”

It takes some training to learn to notice anthropologically significant details in the Biblical narratives. Biblical anthropologists work with data and details, setting aside interpretations in order to gain a clear picture of archaic culture traits, religious beliefs, and the kinship patterns of the biblical Hebrew.

The focus of my research is primarily the Proto-Saharan and Nilotic ancestors among whom the hope of immortality was already a long-standing tradition. The Horite Hebrew were unique in their faith and that uniqueness appears to be the result of divine revelation, divine guidance and their preservation of the Messianic Tradition of their ancestors.

I have found that the exact same marriage and ascendancy pattern applies to Cain, Lamech, Seth, Ham, Shem, Terah, Abraham, Esau, Jacob, Amram, Moses, Elkanah and Joseph of Nazareth. This pattern could not have been written back into the texts at a late date. It is authentic as it stands up to rigorous analysis by anthropologists using the tools of kinship analysis. The marriage and ascendancy pattern of the ruler-priest caste weaves throughout the Bible, like the scarlet cord, from beginning to end.

The Bible is a miraculous book, clearly superintended through the centuries by the LORD. This is especially evident in the analysis of the kinship pattern of the ruler-priest lines from Genesis 4 to Joseph, of the priestly line of Mattai, and the Virgin Mary, daughter of the priest Joachim. The kinship pattern of these Horite Hebrew ancestors is unique and can be traced throughout the Bible,

When it comes to making discoveries, the Bible is a useful resource for anthropologists and archaeologists. When it comes to reconstructing a picture of the antecedents of the Messianic Faith we are talking about a matter of importance to Christians and Jews. We must not force data into a preconceived interpretation. We must avoid a literalist reading of everything, and we must not assume that some propositions are not to be taken literally. 

Some read the Bible in a scholarly way and some read for personal devotions. There is another way to read the Bible: through the lens of cultural anthropology, and this is what we are trying to do at the Facebook forum The Bible and Anthropology. Reading Scripture this way is rigorous because no assumption can stand untested, and no assertion can be made without data.

Biblical anthropology focuses on biblical human populations, culture traits, beliefs and practices found among biblical peoples, their ways of communication, their technologies, and their material world in general. This is a scientific approach that demands rigorous research. Failing to do so represents poor stewardship of God's Word, a primary authority for Jews and Christians alike.

Related reading: God's Word Never Fails; What Abraham Discovered on Mount Moriah; The Question of Immortality; Support Research in Biblical Anthropology; Anthropological Evidence for the Exodus; Ethics and Ancient Cosmology; Something Older; A Little About Sources

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

The Ra-Horus-Hathor Narrative

The following is a conversation I had with a friend and a reader of Just Genesis. I provide a conclusion at the end which summaries some of the key ideas. There are related articles linked at the bottom also.

David Dickens: I was going to ask you about non-Biblical Horite/Proto-Saharan texts. You've talked about a lot of how Genesis lines up with the culture and some of archaeological work in Africa, but I was wondering if there are other sources of narrative. I'm looking for the Nilo-Saharan equivalent of Beowulf, I suppose.

Alice Linsley: The older Horus-Set narrative may be a close parallel. Horus, as the son of the Creator, comes to vanquish Set and claims the kingdom for the Creator God/High King. Not quite the same elements as in Beowulf. Set means bow, and the land of Nubia was called Ta-Seti, the "land of the bow." The Nubians were famous for archery. This narrative dates to around 5000 BC.

David:  At least that gives me a good place to start. I've seen a lot of anti-Horus propaganda lately whereas I'm perfectly happy with a typological interpretation of the Horus myths. (But then I'm no expert so my opinion is no better than most of the critics.)

Alice: There is much ignorance about Horus. Also, a great deal of nonsense on the internet about ancient Egyptian beliefs and magic. You might find this piece helpful: Ha'piru, Ha'biru, 'Apiru or Hebrew?

David: There's certainly all the pieces there, but the narrative is missing. I can read the first few chapters of Genesis, Ramayana, Epic of Gilgamesh, legends of the Eight Immortals, Beowulf... there are so many ancient stories (some with meticulous detail, but all with unifying themes) but there doesn't seem to be one for Horus or the Ha'biru peoples. It seems almost all we have is archeological evidence and some descriptions from ancient historians.

Alice:  The Bible is the narrative of the Horite Hebrew/Ha'biru. It is the only consistent source of the Righteous Ruler narrative. Unfortunately, there are competing narratives in Genesis that produce contextual incongruities. Nevertheless, we know which is the older tradition. It is the one which speaks of the "Seed" of God (Gen. 3:15) coming into the world and trampling down the serpent. The work published at JUST GENESIS attempts to reconnect Christianity to that older Tradition.

A late editorial hand, the Deuteronomist Historian (700-250 BC), introduced a new idea of God in YHWY. YHWY represents a rabbinic version in which there is no divine son. John's Gospel seeks to correct this. John explains that his purpose in writing is "that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God." (John 20:31) Likewise, Martha professes that Jesus is Messiah, the Son of God (John 11:27), and John the Baptist bears witness that Jesus is the Son of God (John 1:34).

David:  So nothing extra-Biblical remains of the myths and legends of a people who touched three continents, spanned thousands of years and had a hand in every ancient civilization in the eastern hemisphere? I just doesn't sound right.

I'm not saying the Bible isn't the bees-knees, I'm just surprised that its all that remains (besides a few hieroglyphs on some temple wall).

Alice: Oh, there is much that pertains to the narrative outside the Bible. The Ancient Egyptian Coffin Texts and Pyramid Texts provide a great deal of information about Horus, the divine son of Ra. This is expressed in the Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts. In the priest's prayer to the King, he says, "Horus is a soul and he recognizes his Father in you..." (Utterance 423)

There are artifacts and texts from among the Akkadians that testify to the belief in a Divine Father with a divine Son. In Akkadian texts the father is called Ani and the son is called Enki.

Also there is the evidence of burial practices among rulers who were served by Horite Hebrew priests. The righteous rulers who were buried in pyramids from the Nile to the Tarum Valley of China hoped for bodily resurrection. That is why their bodies were mummified. It appears that their hope rested in the one who was pierced in the side, and died and rose from the dead on the third day.

The Nilotic Horites held an annual a 5-day festival in which they mourned the death of the son of God. On the third day, the priests lead the people to the fields where they planted seeds of grain to symbolize his rising to life. 

A reference to the third day resurrection is found in the Pyramid Texts: "Oh Horus, this hour of the morning, of this third day is come, when thou surely passeth on to heaven, together with the stars, the imperishable stars." (Utterance 667)

David: I'll have to hunt them down then. I've never seen that sort of collection.

Alice:  As an anthropologist I am aware of the dangers of constructing parallels without substantial evidence from all of these disciplines. I have no interest in exaggerating trifling resemblances. My first impulse is to regard the similarities between Horus and Jesus as yet an example of parallelomania. This is the initial reaction of most people until the evidence is set before them that Ra and Horus express the Father-Son relationship that is the basis of the Messianic Faith.

The Horite expectation that the Righteous Son would not remain in the grave is expressed in Psalm 16:10: For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.

My assertion that the Ra-Horus-Hathor story from the ancient Nile Valley is a form of the Proto-Gospel has been labeled as an example of parallelomania. Such a claim reveals ignorance of what I have written. The Messiah is not a human invention patterned on the Horus myth. Horus is the pattern by which the Horite Hebrew expected a divine Son who would rule as Messiah, and Jesus is the only figure of history who fits the pattern.

Further, Jesus is a direct descendant of the Horite ruler-priests, some of whom lived in Bethlehem and others of whom lived in Nazareth, the home of the 18th priestly division, ha·pi·TSETS (Happizzez). Jesus' Horite ancestry is demonstrated by the distinctive Horite marriage and ascendancy pattern as evident in scientific analysis of the Genesis King Lists. He is the "Seed" of the Woman, the long-expected Immortal Mortal who tramples down death and receives the eternal kingdom.

Hathor conceived Horus by divine overshadowing of the Sun, the emblem of Re.

The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God."Luke 1:35

Hathor is shown at the Dendura Temple holding her newborn son in a manger or stable. The stable was constructed by the Horite priest Har-si-Atef. Atef was the crown worn by deified rulers. The Arabic word atef or atif means “kind.” The ruler who wore the atef crown was to embody kindness and he was to unite the peoples, as Horus unites the peoples of the Upper and Lower Nile.

The rulers of the two regions wore different crowns, but Horus was called "Horus of the Two Crowns" because he wore both. This is what stands behind the account of Yeshua/Joshua, the priest, receiving the "crowns" in Zechariah 6:11: "Take the silver and gold, and make crowns, and set it upon the head of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest..."

Of course, "Yeshua" is the Hebrew for Jesus. Horus is the only mythological figure in ancient Egypt who was understood to be a man, and as a man he wears the two crowns.

Christianity is not an invented religion based on the Horus myth. It is a faith that emerges organically from a received tradition. A closer look at the details of that sacred and very ancient Tradition speak of life beyond the grave through the agency of a divine ruler, the Son of God, who overcomes death and leads his people to immortality. The details of the narrative are extremely important. One such detail is the third-day resurrection described in Pyramid Texts Utterance 667: Oh Horus, this hour of the morning, of this third day is come, when thou surely passeth on to heaven, together with the stars, the imperishable stars.

Consider how Horus describes himself in the Coffin Texts (148):

I am Horus, the great Falcon upon the ramparts of the house of him of the hidden name. My flight has reached the horizon. I have passed by the gods of Nut. I have gone further than the gods of old. Even the most ancient bird could not equal my very first flight. I have removed my place beyond the powers of Set, the foe of my father Osiris. No other god could do what I have done. I have brought the ways of eternity to the twilight of the morning. I am unique in my flight. My wrath will be turned against the enemy of my father Osiris and I will put him beneath my feet in my name of ‘Red Cloak’. (Myth and Symbol in Ancient Egypt by R.T. Rundle Clark, p. 216)

This text is about 800-1000 years older than the words of Psalm 110:1, a clear messianic reference: The Lord says to my Lord: “Sit at My right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.”


The expectation of a Righteous Ruler who would overcome death and lead his people to immortality has been found to be a wide spread and rooted in deep antiquity. It can be traced to the Nilotic belief in the bodily resurrection. In the Coffin Texts, the king is to be immortal in his flesh, expressed by his eating and drinking. Egyptologist Louis Vico Žabkar argues that the Nilotic concept of the "ba" is not a part of the person but is the person himself. The idea of a purely immaterial existence was entirely foreign to the Horite Hebrew. They were confident that the body and spirit could be united after death and thus the "second death" could be avoided.

This reality is lost in translation. The Septuagint borrowed the Greek word ψυχή psychē to describe the soul instead of the term ba to describe body. Žabkar concludes that the concept of the ba is so essential to ancient Egyptian thought that it would be better to used the exact term or explain the distinction in a footnote or parenthetically.

According to St. Augustine "the Egyptians alone believe in the resurrection, as they carefully preserved their dead bodies." ("Death, burial, and rebirth in the religions of antiquity", Jon Davies, Routledge, 1999, p. 27)

In The Pyramid Texts, dating from the beginning of the 4th dynasty, we read: "O Hunger, do not come for me; go to the Abyss, depart to the flood! I am satisfied, I am not hungry because of this kmhw-bread of Horus which I have eaten." (Utterance 338) The Egyptian word km means to bring to an end, to complete, or fulfill, and hw refers to the heavenly temple or mansion of the firmament above.

It appears that the "kmhw-bread of Horus" is what the Church Fathers call "the bread of immortality." Concerning himself, Jesus said that "unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever feeds on my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day" (John 6:53-54).

Certainly, there are messianic elements found among peoples who were not Horite Hebrew. In Hrothgar's view Beowulf is divinely appointed to save his people and he "was led like a lamb to the slaughter" (Is. 53), being betrayed by one of his own inner circle. There are other messiah-like figures in history and literature. The American mythologist, Joseph Campbell, called this the "Monomyth." In his fourth "Eclogue" (written between 42 and 27 BC) Virgil prophesied that a child would be born who would bring peace to the whole world.

These are relatively recent, however. The hope of a righteous ruler who overcomes death and leads his people to immortality can be traced to at least 5000 BC. Messianic expectation predates Abraham and appears to have originated among the Horite Hebrew priest caste that served in the Sun shrines that were found from ancient Nubia to Anatolia and from Edom to the Indus Valley.

The Horus narrative is a form of the Proto-Gospel. Here we find a central truth of the Messianic Faith: that the divine Father has a divine Son. Allusions to the Father-Son relationship appear in ancient Nilotic texts and in the Psalms.

Here is another Messianic passage that speaks of Him trampling the serpent:
"They will bear you up in their hands, That you do not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread upon the lion and cobra, The young lion and the serpent you will trample down." (Psalm 91:12,13)

This expectation was expressed about 1000 years before Psalm 91 in the Pyramid Texts.
"Horus has shattered (tbb, crushed) the mouth of the serpent with the sole of his foot (tbw)" Utterance 388 (681)

Jesus’ Horite ancestry is attested by analysis of his ancestry using the king lists of Genesis and the genealogical data of the Matthew and Luke. These reflect the Horite Hebrew marriage and ascendancy pattern. We are not speaking here of trifling resemblances between the myth of Horus and the historic Jesus. Scripture itself indicates that Abraham and his people were a caste of ruler-priest devotees of Horus. The Horus name appears among many Hebrew figures. Hathor was venerated among the Horite Hebrew metal workers. A temple dedicated to Hathor was discovered at the southwestern edge of Mt. Timnah by Professor Beno Rothenberg of Hebrew University. This is the site of some of the world's oldest copper mines.

Some of the Horite Hebrew rulers are listed in Genesis 36. They ruled in Edom, the same territory that God gave to Abraham. The Horite Hebrew expected a woman of their blood lines to bring forth the "Seed" of God in accordance with the biblical promise in Genesis 3:15. The Proto-Gospel upholds the Father-Son relationship, but this theme is later suppressed by the YHWH cult. YHWH has no son.

Messianic expectation involves the crushing of cosmic forces that oppose the Creator. He who crushes receives in His divine and sinless person the suffering that sinners deserve. He was pierced, scourged, and crowned with thorns. Four centuries before Jesus was born, Plato describes an ancient belief concerned the "Just One"who would be "scourged, bound and crucified." (Republic ii, Chapters 4 and 5). He did not learn this from the Jews. Rather, it was an expectation held among the Nilotic priests, one of which was Sechnuphis, under whom Plato studied for 13 years at Memphis.

The ancient accounts surrounding Horus have many parallels to the story of Jesus. Some skeptics claim that the early Christians borrowed the idea of a dying-rising deity from the ancient Egyptians or from the Roman Dionysus cult. That claim has no historical substantiation, however. It fails to take into consideration that the New Testament writers were biological descendants of and the heirs of the Horite Hebrew, and they saw Jesus as the fulfillment and embodiment of the descriptions of the long-expected Son, born miraculously by divine overshadowing. This is how the Virgin Mary conceived the Son, by the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit. (Luke 1:35).

The word “Serapis” is a fusion of the names Osiris/Horus and the long-horn Apis bull. The Apis bull was the totem of Hathor, Horus’ mother. Her crown of horns cradles the Sun as a sign of her appointment by divine overshadowing.

Though the main library in Alexandria was destroyed, ancient scholars were still able to access a "daughter library" at the Serapis temple located in another part of the city. Around AD 197, Tertullian wrote: "To this day, at the temple of Serapis, the libraries of Ptolemy are to be seen, with the identical Hebrew originals [the Septuagint] in them" (Apology, XVIII).

In a 134 AD letter to his brother-in-law, Emperor Hadrian wrote, “Egypt, which you commended to me, my dearest Servianus, I have found to be wholly fickle and inconsistent, and continually wafted about by every breath of fame. The worshipers of Serapis (here) are called Christians, and those who are devoted to the god Serapis, call themselves Bishops of Christ.” It is evident that the early Nilotic Christians recognized the Messianic symbolism of the Ra-Horus-Hathor narrative.

Related reading: The Social Structure of the Biblical Hebrew (Part 1 of 7); Who is Jesus?; The Urheimat of the Canaanite Y; Fundamentalism and Syncretism in Hebrew History; Ha'piru, Ha'biru, 'Apiru or Hebrew?; The Priests of Nazareth; Righteous Rulers and the Resurrection; The Virgin Mary's Horite Ancestry; Was the Virgin Mary a Dedicated Royal Woman?

Saturday, September 8, 2018

A Little About Sources

Alice C. Linsley

A reader of JUST GENESIS who is also a member of the Facebook forum "The Bible and Anthropology" has written: "I'm curious if you know of a Biblical Commentary on Genesis that would give the historical events as you do on the blog? (I like what you did with the story of Noah, for example)."

I provide a list of Bible Commentaries on Genesis here. It is not a comprehensive list, but it provides a broad range of writers and perspectives. I should write a commentary also, but so few people read these days that I wonder if it is worth the effort. We live in a time when you are heard only if your voice is louder than the other voices in the room, or if you can state your position in 10 words or less.

Honestly, it would be impossible to reduce nearly 40 years of research into a pithy paragraph about the roots of the Messianic Faith extending back into deep antiquity and how Genesis reveals a shift from the divine Father-Son relationship to YHWH who has no son.

The YHWH cult enters the picture about 700-250 BC, long after the time of Abraham and his Horite Hebrew ancestors. YHWH does not have a son. Therefore, we find the introduction of a new idea about God, one that expresses the Jewish understanding of God and is removed from the Proto-Gospel with its understanding of the divine Father and divine Son.

There are competing narratives in Genesis that produce contextual incongruities. Messianic references are found throughout the Bible and the kinship pattern of the Messiah's people is consistent from Genesis to the Gospels, but the Messianic Faith of Abraham and his Nilotic ancestors becomes suppressed under the final hand of rabbinic Judaism in which there is no Son of God.

Nevertheless, we know which is the older tradition. It is the one which speaks of the "Seed" of God (Gen. 3:15) coming into the world and trampling down the serpent. The work published at JUST GENESIS attempts to reconnect Christianity to that older Tradition. We discuss this at The Bible and Anthropology Forum here, for those interested.

In my research I've attempted to focus on data rather than on viewpoints and interpretations. This is an empirical approach to the study of the Bible and I refer to the work as the science of "Biblical Anthropology" to distinguish it from theological anthropology which is, in my view, highly speculative.

This project has stimulated my growth intellectually, spiritually and socially. I have made friends with people around the globe and I hope the research has helped some people to better understand the Bible. I believe the whole of the Canon makes sense only when seen through the lens of the Messianic Faith. Madison Gentsch, my friend and long-time reader, knows my work represents "anthropological sleuthing" of the pre-Abrahamic origins of the Messianic Faith.

Image result for image of Ernest L.Schusky Manual for Kinship AnalysisThe religious authorities in Jerusalem were so far removed from the Messianic Tradition of their Nilotic ancestors that they didn't recognize Jesus as Messiah. Neither did the disciples at first. Jesus had to reconnect them to the Tradition. This is what happened on the road to Emmaus. They said to each other, "Didn't our hearts burn within us as He talked with us on the road and explained the Scriptures to us?" (Luke 24:32)

I am often asked about my sources. I suppose that is implied in the reader's question about a Biblical Commentary on Genesis that would give the historical events as I do on the blog. The sources are too numerous to cite, but the reader who follows links in the articles and pursues the topic further by attending to the articles under "Related reading" will find satisfaction.

My work is based on many Bible scholars, anthropologists, and philosophers. None presents the material as I do, but many present the data upon which I base my conclusions.

I owe my knowledge of kinship analysis to the great anthropologist Ernest L. Schusky. His "Manual for Kinship Analysis" is always ready at hand. Without this knowledge I could not diagram and analyse the marriage and ascendancy pattern of the biblical Hebrew. Nor could I prove that the persons listed in Genesis 4, 5, 10, 11, 25 and 36 are historical persons and their kinship is authentic.

The work of Umberto Cassuto has been very helpful. According to Cassuto, Lamech is related to the Akkadian word lumakku, meaning “priest” (Commentary on Genesis, Vol. 1, p. 233). The word indicates a junior priest of the Hebrew ruler-priest caste, and is related to the Akkadian words maklu - burnt offering, and malku - ruler-priest (which is sometimes a synonym of Šarru - king).

In his extraordinary Commentary on Genesis (Volume 1), Cassuto wrote concerning the lifespan discrepancies of the rulers: "What is the cause of the divergences between the three texts, and which recension has preserved the original figures? Much has been written on this subject, and the answer remains in dispute" (p. 265). 

Cassuto believed that the original figures are preserved in the Masoretic text and if we pursue this we discover the trail of Cain (7), Lamech the Elder (77) and Lamech the Younger (777). Lamech the Younger is the father of Noah. This Lamech is assigned the number 777, symbolic of full righteousness. 

E.A. Speiser's Anchor Bible Commentary on Genesis helped to clarify for me the way that a ruler and his grandson would have the same name. For example Lamech the Elder and Lamech the Younger. However, Speiser missed that this is due to the cousin bride's naming prerogative.

Consider the case of Deuteronomy 21:16, which Speiser translates this way:
"He shall not be able to give the birthright to the younger son of the beloved wife, in
disregard of the older son of the un-loved wife."
(Anchor Bible Commentary on Genesis, p. 118)

Analysis of the kinship pattern of the Horite Hebrew shows that the ruler had two wives. That is made clear in the cases of Lamech, Terah, Abraham, Jacob, Amram, Moses, and Elkanah. 

Now we see why Speiser's translation is a good one. He distinguishes between two wives and two firstborn sons. Deuteronomy 21:16 forbids breaking the kinship pattern by giving to the firstborn of the cousin bride (the second wife) what rightfully belonged to the firstborn son of the sister bride (the wife of the man's youth).

Speiser also contributes to our understanding of the term "Qanyty" as having an Akkadian context which, if we scratch deeper, we find is really the Kushite context of Nimrod's kingdom. Nimrod was a son of Kush (Gen. 10). In Genesis 4:1 Cain's mother gives birth and declares, "Kaniti (qaniti/qanyty)." This is interpreted to mean Kain/Cain. However, this is an Akkadian word that is related to the Nilotic suffix "itti" referring to rulers. "I have gotten a man, as has YHWH" should read "I have begotten a ruler..."

This is a Messianic reference. Kaniti/Qanyty is a reference to a king, born by God's grace. This is the second Messianic reference in the Bible. The first is Genesis 3:15, which refers to the "Woman" (not Eve) who is to bring forth the Seed of God who tramples down the serpent.

The Akkadian itti, as in itti šarrim, means "with the king" or "for the king." It is attached to the names of royal persons and dignitaries. Even today the Nilotic Oromo attach itti to names: Onditi, Kaartuumitti, Finfinneetti and Dimashqitti. That itti is associated with Nilotic rulers is evident in the name of the great Egyptian queen Nefertitti.

Kain has many linguistic equivalents: Qayan, Cain, and Kahn, as in Genghis Kahn, and the female variant is Candace or Kandake. All these words refer to a king/queen or ruler. The first kings named in the Genesis king lists are Kain and his brother Seth. They were Middle Bronze Age rulers as is evidenced by the technologies mentioned in Genesis 4-6. They were not the first people on earth.

This is evident from analysis of the Genesis 4 and 5 lists where we discover that Cain and Seth married the daughters of a ruler named Enoch. These daughters named their first born sons "Enoch" after their father, suggesting that they were the cousin brides of Cain and Seth. Enoch is a royal name. It refers to "one who ascends." Enoch would have been a contemporary of Adam.

Modupe Oduyoye, a Nigerian philologist wrote "The Sons of Gods and the Daughters of Men" and that book helped me make connections between Genesis and African names and religious practices. The book was published in 1984 by Orbis Books, Maryknoll, New York.

In his book, Dr. Oduyoye notes the connection between Adamu Orisa (of Lagos State) and the Hebrew r’ison Adam. He notes that Hebrew Qayin (Kain/Cain) and the Arabic word for smith "qayn" are cognates. He says these words are related to the Yoruba Ogun and Fon Gun, both meaning “patron saint of smiths.” Other examples include Ebira Egene (the metalworker caste) and Hamn Kuno (who is credited with the invention of iron smelting). 

Oduyoye notes that the Hebrew Nod נוד and Nok נוך are almost identical and this invites word play. Kain is said to have wandered in the land of Nod, but that could be Nok in Nigeria, as scholars recognize that the Genesis writer makes this a play on words. If Nok, we have Kain in the vicinity of Lake Chad, Noah's apparent homeland.

I came to a better understanding of the binary (versus dualistic) worldview of the biblical Hebrew by reading the work of the anthropologist Levi-Strauss, and the philosopher Jacques Derrida.

Over the years I have had to learn many ancient Egyptian words and ancient Akkadian words in order to make linguistic connections. That led me to compile a lexicon for each, which I hope will be helpful to readers. For those who wish to dig deeper, I recommend beginning with the INDEX.

Finally, thank you dear readers for following this blog. Some of you have been with me for over 10 years. God bless you all.

Related reading: Something Older; Biblical Anthropology is the Work of Christians; Christianity Lacks Originality; The Sting of Death