Volume 13, Number 2, July-August 2009

Books Worth a Look

by Bill Buckman

The Exodus Case

by Dr. Lennart Moller
©  2002 by
Scandinavia Publishing House

Many of you may be familiar with the late Ron Wyatt. He claimed to have made many Biblically related archaeological discoveries; such as the location of the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, Noah’s ark and the Ark of the Covenant. This reviewer definitely disagrees with Wyatt’s claims on the Ark of the Covenant. Wyatt places the crucifixion on the hill north of Jerusalem, but there seems to be a lot of good evidence that the crucifixion took place on the Mount of Olives east of the city. This review, however, deals with a book that follows up on Wyatt’s discoveries concerning Israel’s Red Sea crossing and the location of Mount Sinai.

Over the years there have been numerous proposals for the location of Mt Sinai. This writer agrees with this book’s author that Jabal Al Lawz is the best candidate for Mt, Sinai.

Dr. Moller is a professor and researcher at the Karolinska Institute, the Medical University of Stockholm. His research focus is on DNA lesions and related illnesses, however he also has background in marine biology, archaeology, photography, scuba diving, and ecology. The author’s fundamental thesis is that “The Bible texts with which this book deals (Genesis 11:27 to Exodus 40:38) are a true historical document.” Dr. Moller has traveled over much of the ground covered in this book and has done underwater exploration in the Red Sea (Gulf of Aqaba) and many of the photographs in the book were taken by him.

After the introduction the book is divided into three major areas: The Pre-Exodus Period, The Exodus, and At the Mountain of God. In part I the author begins with Abraham and makes a case for “Ur of the Chaldees” to be located at Urfa in far northern Syria, rather than in southern Babylonia. Many Biblical names are found in the area around Urfa and photos of old maps showing these names are provided. Moller then discusses an unusual geologic formation near the southern end of the Dead Sea that has balls of sulphur scattered through it. He believes this formation is the remains of Sodom and Gomorrah, as Wyatt did. Dr. Moller presents evidence for identifying Joseph with the famous Imhotep of Egypt’s Third dynasty and makes some interesting observations concerning pharaoh Zoser’s pyramid complex at Sakkara and on pyramid building in general. Other authors have identified Joseph with other personalities in other dynasties in Egyptian history. Is it possible that some of these are the story of the same man, just written from different perspectives by different ancient writers?

In part II the author makes an interesting case for placement of the Exodus in the 18th dynasty. For archaeological reasons this reviewer cannot accept this scenario, believing strongly that dynasty 18 is parallel with Israel’s united monarchy and then the divided monarchy down into the late 800s B.C. The route of the Exodus is then traced across northern Sinai and down to the Nuweiba beach on the western side of the Gulf of Aqaba.

Several excellent satellite photos of the Aqaba Gulf area, as well as the Jabal Al Lawz area, are provided. There are also numerous pictures of the underwater evidence: chariot parts and animal and human remains. Some objects are fairly easily discerned in the photographs, some are not.

In the last section the author attempts to identify several items mentioned in the scripture in the vicinity of mount Sinai including: the rock Moses struck to produce water, the altar Moses built, 12 pillars, and Elijah’s cave. Dr. Moller deals with many other details that indicate Jabal Al Lawz may well be Mt. Sinai. The top of the mountain is blackened; it is in the land of Midian; and the possible home of Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, is nearby.

The book is 317 pages long with more than 550 figures (mostly color photographs) and several tables, a bibliography and index. A minor complaint of this reviewer is that some of the photos are quite small and therefore hard to discern. A major complaint is that while the author references the Bible and Josephus quite well, most of his other references are to the book or periodical only and not to a page. The reviewer notes that there is a new edition of the book, which he has not seen, which may address these issues.

The reviewer found most of this book to be very interesting reading. Whether or not the book is accurate in any or all of its suppositions the reader must decide, as the author also states.           &

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