His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.
Benjamin is a wolf that raveneth; in the morning he devoureth the prey, and at even he divideth the spoil.’
This is considered to be part of the Jahwist Source. It is a picture drawn of the final days and the last words of Jacob, son of Aaron, son of Abraham. It is a picture, not a photograph, but the image is clear. Judah will have the “scepter” and “ruling staff” and his “eyes are red with wine, and his teeth white with milk”, implying fertility. It will remain this way “as long as men come to Shiloh”. However, Shiloh disappeared early in the story, likely before the people of Judah ever gained any type of influence or prominence. For the archaeological evidence seems to suggest that Judah and Jerusalem were nothing more than scattered groups of highland village communities until around the 8th century BCE. This runs contrary to the biblical account.
“This vision is central to the theology of the Bible—and to the biblical hope for an eventual reunion of Judah and Israel under the rule of the Davidic dynasty. But it is simply not an accurate representation of the historical reality…there is no compelling archaeological evidence for the historical existence of a vast united monarchy, centered in Jerusalem, that encompassed the entire land of Israel. On the contrary, the evidence reveals a complex demographic transformation in the highlands in which a unified ethnic consciousness began only slowly to coalesce.
“And here we reach perhaps the most unsettling clash between the archaeological finds and the Bible….There is good reason to suggest that there were always two distinct highland entities, of which the southern was always the poorer, weaker, more rural, and less influential—until it rose to sudden spectacular prominence after the fall of the northern kingdom of Israel.”
The Bible Unearthed, Finkelstein & Silberman, 2001, pp.149-150
So, what’s up with Shiloh? Shiloh was northern territory, “which is on the north of Beth-el, on the east side of the highway that goeth up from Beth-el to Shechem, and on the south of Lebonah.’ (Judges 21:19)
The Deuteronomistic History includes Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges Samuel and Kings. Follow along with me into the abyss and let’s see if you see what I see. We’ll see.
And the whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled themselves together at Shiloh, and set up the tent of meeting there; and the land was subdued before them.
Then came near the heads of fathers’ houses of the Levites unto Eleazar the priest, and unto Joshua the son of Nun, and unto the heads of fathers’ houses of the tribes of the children of Israel; and they spoke unto them at Shiloh in the land of Canaan, saying: ‘The LORD commanded by the hand of Moses to give us cities to dwell in, with the open land thereabout for our cattle.’
And the lot came out for the families of the Kohathites; and the children of Aaron the priest, who were of the Levites, had by lot out of the tribe of Judah, and out of the tribe of the Simeonites, and out of the tribe of Benjamin, thirteen cities.
And out of the tribe of Benjamin…
…Anathoth with the open land about it
The Aaronids, the children of Aaron, were sons of Kohath, one of the three sons of Levi. According to the Torah, his other sons were Gershon and Merari. In the later, post-exilic Priestly-source segments of the Torah, the Aaronids were granted sole proprietorship of the priesthood, but not according to the earlier Deuteronomistic Historian or the Book of Deuteronomy.
And the priests the sons of Levi shall come near – for them the LORD thy God hath chosen to minister unto Him, and to bless in the name of the LORD; and according to their word shall every controversy and every stroke be.
And Moses wrote this law, and delivered it unto the priests the sons of Levi, that bore the ark of the covenant of the LORD, and unto all the elders of Israel.
Out of the sons of Levi, the Aaronids were given 13 southern cities from three of the tribes; Judah, Simeon and Benjamin. One of those cities was Anathoth, which was in the tribal land of Benjamin. Anathoth was a city of Aaronid priests. It was a few miles east of Jerusalem.
And this man (Elkanah) went up out of his city from year to year to worship and to sacrifice unto the LORD of hosts in Shiloh. And the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were there priests unto the LORD.
1 Samuel 1:3
Xcntrik Challenge: Find where the Deuteronomistic Historian identifies Eli as an Aaronid. It is not there. Nowhere is the father of Eli mentioned. While Eleazar, son of Aaron and Elisheba, was identified as the priest that met the people in Shiloh in the book of Joshua, nowhere is Eleazar tied to Eli, UNTIL much later in history, and only in a convoluted way. Eli simply appears. I will return to this later, but notice the reoccurrence of the use of “El” in the names; El-i, El-eazar, El-isheba. Nowhere is Shiloh given to the Aaronids in their division of land. It appears to have been Ephraimite territory. Instead, the sons of Aaron were all given territory in the south, from the tribes of Benjamin, Judah and Simeon (Joshua 21:4).
Elkanah was an Ephraimite (1 Sam 1:1). One of his two wives was Hannah. Hannah was childless. She went to see Eli who sat “upon his seat by the door-post of the temple of the LORD” (1:9). Hannah becomes pregnant. She gives birth to a son named Samu-el. Samuel is then given to the deity/temple at Shiloh. The priesthood was later stripped from the family of Eli but not from Samuel. Why did Eli fall by the wayside?
Now the sons of Eli were base men; they knew not the LORD.
1 Samuel 2:12
… they lay with the women that did service at the door of the tent of meeting.
1 Samuel 2:22
Remember: Hannah was childless. She went to see Eli who sat “by the door-post of the temple of the LORD”. Hannah became pregnant.
Behold, the days come, that I will cut off thine arm, and the arm of thy father’s house, that there shall not be an old man in thy house.
1 Samuel 2:31
In that day I will perform against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from the beginning even unto the end. For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever, for the iniquity which he knew, because his sons did bring a curse upon themselves, and he restrained them not.
1 Samuel 3:12-13
By the way, this isn’t conclusive, but it is fun.
Then Eli called Samuel, and said: ‘Samuel, my son.’ And he said: ‘Here am I.’
1 Samuel 3:16
Enter the Name of God
And the LORD appeared again in Shiloh; for the LORD revealed Himself to Samuel in Shiloh by the word of the LORD.
1 Samuel 3:21
Eli is out, Samuel is in. “Eli” is a derivative of “El”. “Samu-el” means “the name of God.” Something wonderful is about to happen, but something else is out in addition to Eli.
So the people sent to Shiloh, and they brought from thence the ark of the covenant of the LORD of hosts, who sitteth upon the cherubim; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were there with the ark of the covenant of God.
1 Samuel 4:4
Xcntrik’s rule #1: What does the text say?
The people…“brought from thence the ark of the covenant of the LORD of hosts, who sitteth upon the cherubim”. The ark of the covenant was not sitting upon the cherubim, the cherubim were atop the ark of the covenant, they acted as a throne platform for the deity. Not only did they bring out the ark, but also the one sitting on the ark; the deity, “the LORD of hosts, who sitteth upon the cherubim”.
And the Philistines fought, and Israel was smitten, and they fled every man to his tent; and there was a very great slaughter; for there fell of Israel thirty thousand footmen. And the ark of God was taken; and the two sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas, were slain.
1 Samuel 4:10-11
The sons of Eli, the ark and the deity are lost. The next funny little story of the golden hemorrhoids, or perhaps golden penises, will reveal the power of the deity. But that’s another story for another time. Just note that the curses are ideal for a nature/fertility cult.
‘The glory is departed from Israel; for the ark of God is taken.’
1 Samuel 4:22
And the men of Kiriath-jearim came, and fetched up the ark of the LORD, and brought it into the house of Abinadab in the hill, and sanctified Eleazar his son to keep the ark of the LORD.
1 Samuel 7:1
The deity is returned; but not to Shiloh in Israel. Instead it went to Kiriath-jearim in Judah. Another Eleazar, the son of Abinidab is “sanctified” as the keeper of the ark. What is to become of the priests of Shiloh?
Ahitub, Ichabod’s brother, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eli, the priest of the LORD in Shiloh
Then came David to Nob to Ahimelech the priest
1 Samuel 21:1
Ahimelech the son of Ahitub.
1 Samuel 22:9
Ahimelech the priest in Nob is the son of Ahitub, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eli, the priest of the LORD of Shiloh. Ahimelech helps David which does not sit well with Saul.
And the king (Saul) said to Doeg: ‘Turn thou, and fall upon the priests.’ And Doeg the Edomite turned, and he fell upon the priests, and he slew on that day fourscore and five persons that did wear a linen ephod. And Nob, the city of the priests, smote he with the edge of the sword, both men and women, children and sucklings, and oxen and asses and sheep, with the edge of the sword. And one of the sons of Ahimelech the son of Ahitub, named Abiathar, escaped, and fled after David. And Abiathar told David that Saul had slain the LORD’S priests.
1 Samuel 22:18-21
Abiathar, son of Ahimilech, son of Ahitub, son of Phinehas, son of Eli, was the sole survivor of the massacre of the priests at Nob. So what happened to Abiathar?
And David said to Abiathar the priest, the son of Ahimelech: ‘I pray thee, bring me hither the ephod.’ And Abiathar brought thither the ephod to David.
1 Samuel 30:7
And David reigned over all Israel; and David executed justice and righteousness unto all his people. And … Zadok the son of Ahitub, and Ahimelech the son of Abiathar (wait, switch that around), were priest
2 Samuel 8:15-17
Ahimelech the son of Ahitub
1 Samuel 22:9
and Zadok the son of Ahitub (?)
2 Samuel 8:17
Zadok therefore and Abiathar carried the ark of God back to Jerusalem; and they abode there.
King David sets up a joint priesthood. Zadok represents the southern interests, Abiathar represents the northern interests. No taxation without representation; equitable. So what becomes of our Shiloh-Nob-Jerusalem descendents of Eli? David gets old. His death-bed weren’t all that bad however, thanks to that hot little number named Abishag the Shunammite *wink wink, nudge nudge* (1 Kings 1:2-4). It’s GOOD to be the king! Unfortunately, that was before the days of Viagra, so “the king knew her not”, but, I digress . . .
Now Adonijah the son of Haggith exalted himself, saying: ‘I will be king’; and he prepared him chariots and horsemen, and fifty men to run before him.
The next in line to be king, the oldest (living) son, was Adonijah, the son of one of David’s wives, Haggith. Adonijah had support from the tribal princes of the northern territory, from Joab, leader of the tribal muster army and from Abiathar, the priest in the lineage of Eli, from Shiloh, all from the north.
And he conferred with Joab the son of Zeruiah, and with Abiathar the priest; and they following Adonijah helped him.
And Nathan said: ‘My lord, O king, hast thou said: Adonijah shall reign after me, and he shall sit upon my throne? For he is gone down this day, and hath slain oxen and fatlings and sheep in abundance, and hath called all the king’s sons, and the captains of the host, and Abiathar the priest; and, behold, they eat and drink before him, and say: Long live king Adonijah.
1 Kings 1:24-25
Not so fast. What do you think this is; a democracy?
Solomon sitteth on the throne of the kingdom.
1 Kings 1:46
And unto Abiathar the priest said the king: ‘Get thee to Anathoth, unto thine own fields; for thou art deserving of death; but I will not at this time put thee to death, because thou didst bear the ark of the Lord GOD before David my father, and because thou wast afflicted in all wherein my father was afflicted.’ So Solomon thrust out Abiathar from being priest unto the LORD; that the word of the LORD might be fulfilled, which He spoke concerning the house of Eli in Shiloh.
1 Kings 2:26-27
Abiathar, son of Ahimilech, son of Ahitub, son of Phinehas, son of Eli the priest of the LORD of hosts at Shiloh, sole survivor of the massacre of the priests at Nob, the last of the priests of Shiloh, is exiled to Anathoth, a city of Aaronid priests, for supporting the northern prince, Adonijah, over the southern prince, Solomon. Good way to keep a close eye on the competition perhaps? Joab the son of Zeruiah did not fare quite as well. (I Kings 2:28-34)
…and Zadok the priest did the king put in the room of Abiathar.
1 Kings 2:35
Zadok gets Abiathar’s room. Maybe it was the one with the internet connection.
Brer’ Portion and Brer’ Rabbit
Coney with a side of Ja
The Assyrian siege of Jerusalem occurred around 701 BCE. Hezekiah reigned over the kingdom of Judah from about 729 to 698 BCE.
Cry thou with a shrill voice, O daughter of Gallim! Hearken, O Laish! O thou poor Anathoth! … This very day shall he halt at Nob, shaking his hand at the mount of the daughter of Zion, the hill of Jerusalem.
And Rab-shakeh said unto them: ‘Say ye now to Hezekiah: Thus saith the great king, the king of Assyria: What confidence is this wherein thou trustest?
2 Kings 18:19
The LORD said unto me: Go up against this land, destroy it
2 Kings 18:25
Then said Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, and Shebnah, and Joah, unto Rab-shakeh: ‘Speak, I pray thee, to thy servants in the Aramean language; for we understand it; and speak not with us in the Jews’ language, in the ears of the people that are on the wall.’
2 Kings 18:26
In 701 BCE, Eliakim was a responsible adult, “over the household” v.37, which would have made his father, Hilkiah, around/at least 40 years old at that time. This is the first usage of the name “Hilkiah” by the Deuteronomistic Historian, but it cointantly ain’t the last.
Hear ye the word of the great king, the king of Assyria.
2 Kings 18:28
Then came Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, who was over the household, and Shebna the scribe, and Joah the son of Asaph the recorder, to Hezekiah with their clothes rent, and told him the words of Rab-shakeh.
Kings 18:37 (see also Isaiah 36)
King Josiah reigned from around 640 to 609 BCE.
And it came to pass in the eighteenth year of king Josiah, that the king sent Shaphan the son of Azaliah, the son of Meshullam, the scribe, to the house of the LORD, saying. ‘Go up to Hilkiah the high priest…
2 Kings 22:3-4
It is unlikely that this Hilkiah was the same one whose son, Eliakim, was “over the household” during the reign of Josiah’s great-grandfather, Hezekiah, 80 or so years earlier. Hilkiah means “a portion of Ja” or perhaps “>The< portion of Ja”?
And Hilkiah the high priest said unto Shaphan the scribe: ‘I have found the book of the Law in the house of the LORD.’ And Hilkiah delivered the book to Shaphan, and he read it.
2 Kings 22:8
Here we come to the Deuteronomistic Historian’s introduction of Shaphan the scribe, the son of Azaliah, the son of Meshullum. Shaphan is not just a name, it was also a word that described an animal: from Strong’s; “a species of rock rabbit (from its hiding), that is, probably the hyrax: – coney.” Note: “from its hiding”. It was one of the unclean animals later to be identified by the Priestly source. (Leviticus 11:5)
And Shaphan the scribe told the king, saying: ‘Hilkiah the priest hath delivered me a book.’ And Shaphan read it before the king.
2 Kings 22:10
And the king commanded Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam the son of Shaphan, and Achbor the son of Micaiah, and Shaphan the scribe, and Asaiah the king’s servant, saying…
2 Kings 22:12
‘Go ye, inquire of the LORD for me’
2 Kings 22:13
So Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam, and Achbor, and Shaphan, and Asaiah, went unto Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tikvah, the son of Harhas, keeper of the wardrobe – now she dwelt in Jerusalem in the second quarter – and they spoke with her.
2 Kings 22:14
Here come the great reforms of King Josiah. Watch closely:
And the king commanded Hilkiah the high priest, and the priests of the second order, and the keepers of the door, to bring forth out of the temple of the LORD all the vessels that were made for Baal, and for the Asherah, and for all the host of heaven; and he burned them without Jerusalem in the fields of Kidron, and carried the ashes of them unto Beth-el. And he put down the idolatrous priests, whom the kings of Judah had ordained to offer in the high places in the cities of Judah, and in the places round about Jerusalem; them also that offered unto Baal, to the sun, and to the moon, and to the constellations, and to all the host of heaven. And he brought out the Asherah from the house of the LORD, without Jerusalem, unto the brook Kidron, and burned it at the brook Kidron, and stamped it small to powder, and cast the powder thereof upon the graves of the common people. And he broke down the houses of the sodomites (qadesh), that were in the house of the LORD, where the women wove coverings for the Asherah. And he brought all the priests out of the cities of Judah, and defiled the high places where the priests had made offerings, from Geba to Beer-sheba; and he broke down the high places of the gates that were at the entrance of the gate of Joshua the governor of the city, which were on a man’s left hand as he entered the gate of the city.
2 Kings 23:4-8
Again, what does the text say? Hilkiah is commanded to remove vessels that were made for Baal, for Asherah and for all the host of heaven from the temple. He is commanded to “put down the idolatrous priests” who offered sacrifices to Baal, to the sun, to the moon, to the constellations and to all the hosts of heaven. Prior to this reform, the temple obviously serviced numerous deities. At any rate, the culture was obviously polytheistic. There were various active cults practicing both in the temple and in Judah. Hilkiah’s “find” demands monotheism.
Moreover them that divined by a ghost or a familiar spirit, and the teraphim, and the idols, and all the detestable things that were spied in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, did Josiah put away, that he might confirm the words of the law which were written in the book that Hilkiah the priest found in the house of the LORD.
2 Kings 23:24
According to the Deuteronomistic Historian, Josiah was the greatest of all kings, because he implemented the regulations of Hilkiah’s “find”. In other words, the Deuteronomistic Historian was quite a fan of Hilkiah.
And like unto him was there no king before him, that turned to Jehovah with all his heart, and with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; neither after him arose there any like him.
2 Kings 23:25
But we ain’t done yet.
Jeremiah was a Bullfrog
… from Shiloh?
Therefore thus saith the LORD concerning the men of Anathoth, that seek thy life, saying: ‘Thou shalt not prophesy in the name of the LORD, that thou die not by our hand’; therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts: Behold, I will punish them; the young men shall die by the sword, their sons and their daughters shall die by famine; And there shall be no remnant unto them; for I will bring evil upon the men of Anathoth, even the year of their visitation.
The words of Jeremiah the son of Hilkiah, of the priests that were in Anathoth in the land of Benjamin
Remember: Anathoth was a city of Aaronid priests. Abiathar, the last of the priests of Shiloh was exiled to Anathoth. Jeremiah says that he is “of the priests that were in Anathoth” but the “men of Anathoth” were hostile toward him. He also says that he is the son of Hilkiah, perhaps the same Hilkiah who found the “book”?
‘Thus saith the LORD: Stand in the court of the LORD’S house, and speak unto all the cities of Judah, which come to worship in the LORD’S house, all the words that I command thee to speak unto them; diminish not a word.
Thus saith the LORD: If ye will not hearken to Me, to walk in My law…then will I make this house like Shiloh, and will make this city a curse to all the nations of the earth.’
Jeremiah had made an end of speaking all that the LORD had commanded …the priests and the prophets and all the people laid hold on him, saying: ‘Thou shalt surely die.
And there was also a man that prophesied in the name of the LORD, Uriah the son of Shemaiah of Kiriath-jearim; and he prophesied against this city and against this land according to all the words of Jeremiah;
Remember: Kiriath-jearim, also curiously known as Kiriath-baal (Joshua 15:60), in Judah, was where the ark was relocated after being taken from Shiloh in Israel and lost to the Philistines, bringing about the golden hemorrhoid incident of 1 Samuel 6-7. Uriah prophesied “according to all the words of Jeremiah”. Uriah feared for his life and fled to Egypt.
Jehoiakim the king… fetched forth Uriah out of Egypt, and brought him unto Jehoiakim the king; who slew him with the sword, and cast his dead body into the graves of the children of the people.
Nevertheless the hand of Ahikam the son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah, that they should not give him into the hand of the people to put him to death.
Not only do we have a potential link between Jeremiah and Hilkiah the high priest, and some type of affiliation with Kiriath-jearim, we also have a positive link between Jeremiah and the house of Shaphan.
Now these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem unto the residue of the elders of the captivity, and to the priests, and to the prophets, and to all the people, whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon,
…by the hand of Elasah the son of Shaphan, and Gemariah the son of Hilkiah, whom Zedekiah king of Judah sent unto Babylon to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, saying
Again we have a reference to both Hilkiah and Shaphan, their sons being sent to the exiles in Babylon, by Jeremiah, with a message. So what was this message from Jeremiah?
Let not your prophets that are in the midst of you, and your diviners, beguile you, neither hearken ye to your dreams which ye cause to be dreamed. For they prophesy falsely unto you in My name; I have not sent them, saith the LORD.
Jeremiah says that these prophets to the people in Babylon were false prophets.
Behold, Hanamel, the son of Shallum thine uncle, shall come unto thee, saying: Buy thee my field that is in Anathoth; for the right of redemption is thine to buy it.’
Jeremiah 32:7 (Right of Redemption see Lev. 25:29, 32)
Remember: The Deuteronomistic Historian referenced the name “Shallum” before.
“Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tikvah, the son of Harhas, keeper of the wardrobe…”
2 Kings 22:14
Now Jeremiah says that Shallum is his uncle, who owns property in Anathoth.
So Hanamel mine uncle’s son came to me in the court of the guard according to the word of the LORD, and said unto me: ‘Buy my field, I pray thee, that is in Anathoth, which is in the land of Benjamin; for the right of inheritance is thine, and the redemption is thine; buy it for thyself.’ Then I knew that this was the word of the LORD. And I bought the field that was in Anathoth of Hanamel mine uncle’s son, and weighed him the money, even seventeen shekels of silver.
in the ninth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the tenth month, came Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon and all his army against Jerusalem, and besieged it; in the eleventh year of Zedekiah, in the fourth month, the ninth day of the month, a breach was made in the city
And as for the people that were left in the land of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had left, even over them he made Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, governor.
2 Kings 25:22
Gedaliah is the grandson of Shaphan.
Now I said all that to say this:
Jeremiah 8:8 – various translations
(JPS) How do ye say: ‘We are wise, and the Law of the LORD is with us’? Lo, certainly in vain hath wrought the vain pen of the scribes.
(BBE) How is it that you say, We are wise and the law of the Lord is with us? But see, the false pen of the scribes has made it false.
(ASV) How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of Jehovah is with us? But, behold, the false pen of the scribes hath wrought falsely.
(YLT) How do ye say, We are wise, And the law of Jehovah is with us? Surely, lo, falsely it hath wrought, The false pen of scribes.
In Who Wrote the Bible, R. E. Friedman proposes that the E-source, the D-source and the Deuteronomistic History were written by Israelites and those carrying forward the traditions of Israel, not Judahites who were responsible for the J-source and P-source material. The E-source (northern) and J-source (southern) material typically dates to the first quarter of the first millennium, prior to the fall of Israel in 722 BCE. After the fall of Israel, during the assimilation of the northerners into southern territory, the J and E sources were combined to create JE. The D-source (Deuteronomy) was composed by (a) transplanted northern priest(s) during the reign of Josiah and represented the interests of those northern priests, originally from Shiloh to Nob to Jerusalem to Anathoth to Jerusalem. The earliest edition might have been the book “found”, or perhaps written, by Hilkiah around 622 BCE (Deuteronomy 12-26).
Similarly, the Deuteronomistic History also underwent a couple of stages. These are known as DTR1 and DTR2. DTR1 was also compiled/completed during the reign of Josiah, the greatest of all kings who went on a quest to establish centralized monotheistic worship in Jerusalem, who sought to stamp out all other forms of worship and to establish control over territory to the north, in Israel, in accordance with the book “found” by Hilkiah. The hopes and dreams of the author(s) hung on the success of Josiah’s “reforms”. Unfortunately, Josiah was killed in 609 BCE during a conflict with the Egyptians in Megiddo, and the authors’ hopes were crushed. Friedman discusses this in chapter 5: “A Full Stop at Josiah”.
Soon after, Jerusalem would fall to Babylon and that world would end. DTR2 is an attempt, during the time of the exile (while in Egypt?), to reorganize, revamp and explain why the eternal kingdom was no more. Instead of completely rewriting the elaborate “history” of Deuteronomy/Joshua/Judges/Samuel/Kings, edits were simply made warning early patrons of the events that had by befallen Israel and now Judah. Friedman suggests that the final author of Deuteronomy and author of DTR1 and DTR2 could have been Jeremiah, the son of Hilkiah, or perhaps Baruch the scribe.
“Indeed, it may be best to think of the Deuteronomistic writings as collaboration, with Jeremiah, the poet and prophet, as the inspiration, and Baruch, the scribe, as the writer who interpreted history through Jeremiah’s conceptions.” Who Wrote the Bible, Friedman, p. 147
In The Bible Unearthed, Finkelstein and Silberman provided an archaeological look at the biblical era known as the First Temple Period, the first half of the first millennium BCE, from the supposed time of Solomon at the beginning of the 10th century up to the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem and the exile in the 6th century. Jewish and Christian tradition have told us of the Golden Age of David and Solomon, the splitting of the “united” kingdom, the northerner’s consistent failures which resulted in their ultimate demise and the evil along with naughty things that their kings and people did.
What Finkelstein and Silbermann showed was that the northern territory known as Israel was fertile, productive and prosperous, but the southern territory controlled by Judah was not, until about the time that it was flooded with northern refugees after the Assyrian destruction in the 8th century; the time of King Hezekiah. No evidence of any great United Kingdom of David or Golden Age of Solomon in the south has ever been found. There IS evidence of a similar world, not quite as golden, in the north beginning with the Omride dynasty and continuing until the destruction by the Assyrians. Objects in the north that were identified by early Christian and Jewish archaeologists as belonging to the Solomonic era, such as Solomon’s stables and the six-chambered gates of Megiddo, Gezer and Hazor, were dated such based primarily on individual passages of scripture. Subsequent digs, according to Finkelstein and Silberman, suggest that these are later layers.
- The struggle between the monotheistic northern cult that evolved from the minority Shiloh cult of the Lord of Hosts and his divine council, one of many cults, and the southern polytheistic majority cult(s) existed in tension until the time of the Exile
- The cults exiled to Babylon were not the same as the cult of Shiloh, Eli, Hilkiah, Shaphan, Shallum, Jeremiah, Gedeliah, although their cult was possibly responsible for the exile.
- Jeremiah, from Egypt, failed … kinda
- Out of necessity, the monopoly established in Babylon syncretically mixed with the monotheistic theology of Shiloh and became what we know as Second Temple Judaism, the first true expression of a monotheistic theocracy, made possible by the Priestly or Aaronid Torah; or in other words, the LAW of ….
Ezra, the son of Seraiah, the son of Azariah, the son of Hilkiah, The son of Shallum, the son of Zadok, the son of Ahitub, The son of Amariah, the son of Azariah, the son of Meraioth, The son of Zerahiah, the son of Uzzi, the son of Bukki, The son of Abishua, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the chief priest:
Here, we’re no longer talking about the Phinehas, the son of Eli, but now Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron.
And Eleazar Aaron’s son took him one of the daughters of Putiel to wife; and she bore him Phinehas. These are the heads of the fathers’ houses of the Levites according to their families.
People seldom pay attention to genealogies, but they were created for a specific reason, to establish a line of credibility.
According to Ezra, after the exile:
“Zadok, the son of >Ahitub<, the son of Amariah … son of >Phinehas<, the son of >Eleazar<, the son of >Aaron< the chief priest”
According to the Deuteronomistic Historian, before/during the exile:
“Ahijah, the son of >Ahitub<, … the son of >Phinehas<, the son of >Eli<, the priest of the Lord in Shiloh, who had the ephod”
1 Samuel 14:3
Moses was a northern hero. Aaron was a southern Hero. In the end game, it looks like Moses lost and Aaron won.