In relying upon Biblical Chronological details for this period, the academics do two extraordinary things. Firstly, they uncharacteristically treat the data as though it were correct, and this, despite the fact that they blatantly and 'justifiably' deny the reliability of all the chronological data for the preceding fifty (50) years, - and - Secondly, to make the data fit, they insist that a two year old child (Manesseh) was made to co-reign with his father (Hezekiah). If in dealing with the previous fifty year period they are going to insist that the redactors got it wrong, then upon what basis do they now insist that they have correct the details, especially when Hezekiah had apparently been informed that he would have his life extended for 15 years beyond the 701 BCE invasion. The basis for their calculation is, by their own admission, completely untrustworthy.
Academic Newsletter No. 11 - Archaeology and the Bible Series II Truth & Error Academic Errors in understanding Biblical Chronology.
As stated in last weeks Newsletter, King Josiah reigned 31 artificial years commencing in April of 634 BCE reigning through to around September 606 BCE.
Current academic opinion however, places his death in 609 BCE. There are four (4) reasons for this.
1. As we saw last week, if you calculate the reigns for Manesseh, Amon, Josiah, Jehoiakim and Zedekiah, there are 110 years allotted them, which, if calculated back from the fall of Jerusalem in 587/586 BCE, requires that Manesseh commenced to reign in 696/695 BCE and that Josiah died in 609/608 BCE.
2. That Josiah died while Necho was on his way to assist Assur-Uballit in his final attempt to capture Haran during Nabopolassar's 17th Regnal year.(Wiseman,1961,p.63.Lines 66/67)
3. That Nebuchadrezzar reigned 43 Regnal years + an accession year.
4. That Jeremiah 46:2 correctly synchronises Nebuchadrezzar's (first) accession year with Jehoiakim's 4th year, and thereby justifies placing Josiah's death in 609 BCE.
The 'King's Calendar' maintains and effectively demonstrates that all four propositions are incorrect. What follows here is an abridged version of what can be found in Chapter Two of 'The King's Calendar: The Secret of Qumran' in refutation of current academic opinion.
The Arguments against Academic Opinion
1. Manesseh's reign commences in 696/695 BCE:
This is erroneous. While it goes without saying that the 'King's Calendar' clearly demonstrates that Biblical Chronology is provided from within the framework of an artificial construct and that Manesseh did not commence to reign at this time, this however, is not the argument here.
In relying upon Biblical Chronological details for this period, the academics do two extraordinary things.
Firstly, they uncharacteristically treat the data as though it were correct, and this, despite the fact that they blatantly and 'justifiably' deny the reliability of all the chronological data for the preceding fifty (50) years, - and -
Secondly, to make the data fit, they insist that a two year old child (Manesseh) was made to co-reign with his father (Hezekiah).
If in dealing with the previous fifty year period they are going to insist that the redactors got it wrong, then upon what basis do they now insist that they have correct the details, especially when Hezekiah had apparently been informed that he would have his life extended for 15 years beyond the 701 BCE invasion.
The basis for their calculation is, by their own admission, completely untrustworthy.
2. Josiah died in Nabopolassar's 17th year - 609 BCE
Based upon the belief that Nebuchadrezzar reigned 43 regnal years plus One (1) accession year, backdated from 561 BCE when Amel-Marduk ascended to the throne, the Academics have calculated that "THE" Battle of Carchemish occurred in 609 BCE. Therefore, since their other calculations based upon Biblical Chronology also place Josiah's death at this time, Josiah must in fact, have died this year.
"THE" Battle of Carchemish is that referred to when speaking of Pharaoh's assistance to the Assyrian King Assur-Uballit during his final attempt to capture Haran during Nabopolassar's 17th Regnal year. (Wiseman, 1961, p.63. Lines 66 - 67).
HOWEVER, it should be noted that the Bible does not align the year of Josiah's death with the 17th year of Nabopolassar, and nor do the Babylonian Chronicles provide any information in relation to Josiah's death.
There are in fact two Biblical Accounts of Josiah's death, and given their differences, it may be justifiably assumed that they are 'interpretations' of what confusing data was left to the redactors who compiled the Books of Kings and Chronicles.
While the 2 Kings 23:29-30 account mentions that Pharaoh Necho king of Egypt 'went up' to the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates and thereby implies that there was still a king of Assyria at the time of Josiah's death, it also states that he was 'killed' at Meggido and his dead body was taken back to Jerusalem.
The 2 Chronicles 35:20-24 account however, does not mention the king of Assyria, and contrary to the Kings account, states that Josiah was wounded, and taken alive back to Jerusalem where he later died.
The fact that they disagree with each other is sufficient "in law" for them not to be used in evidence of anything, and the academics are wrong if they use the Biblical Accounts to support their theories.
FUTHERMORE, the Biblical Account which has been interpreted to mean that Josiah went out to Fight against Pharaoh Necho, has since been determined to be 'incorrectly' portrayed. The meaning of the words 'went up to' do not carry an automatic hostile intent.
ADDITIONALLY, the stated location of the incident has been questioned, with some academics placing this event in another place at a different event to that in 609 BCE.
AND FINALLY, reference to Carchemish in the Chronicles account cannot be read to mean 'THE' battle of Carchemish in 609 BCE, for Pharaoh went to Carchemish to fight on Numerous occasions.
The Bottom line is that the Biblical narratives cannot be used to support the claim that Josiah died during 'THE' battle of Carchemish during the 17th year of Nabopolassar, during Assur-Uballit's final attempt to capture Haran.
That Nebuchadrezzar reigned 43 Regnal years + an accession year.
As mentioned above, 609 BCE has been calculated as Nabopolassar's 17th year, during which time, Assur-Uballit attempted to recapture Haran.
The calculation for this date is achieved two ways.
The first method:
The date for the commencement of Nebuchadrezzar's successor Amel-Marduk is known. He ascended the throne during the last year of Nebuchadrezzar in 561 BCE. There is also a business contract dated to that year which records that it is the 43rd year of Nebuchadrezzar. Therefore since 561 BCE is the 43rd year of Nebuchadrezzar, by backtracking, 609 BCE becomes the 17th year of Nebuchadrezzar's father, Nabopolassar.
However there are two very important things to note about this record of the 43rd year.
1. Only a quarter of Nebuchadrezzar's reign is covered in the records that exist today, and there are no other records to confirm the length of Nebuchadrezzar's reign.
2. There is precedent however, that indicates that sometimes, accession years were included with regnal years. It may yet be demonstrated that this also applies to Nebuchadrezzar, and that the business contract included his accession year.
The Second Method:
In 648 BCE, Samash-sum-ukin who ruled Babylon for his brother Ashurbanipal, died after an unsuccessful rebellion, and Kandalanu became ruler. Britannica
Kandalanu reigned 22 years, followed by Nabopolassar for 21 years, and then Nebuchadrezzar for 43 years. The total number of years they reign is 86, which when backtracked from Nebuchadrezzar's final year, arrives at 648 BCE, the year Samash-sum-ukin died. Everything is nice and neat and apparently in order.
But this only works if 648 BCE is Kandalanu's accession year, and he commences in 647 BCE. The problem with this, is that no one knows who Kandalanu really was, nor when he commenced. Some think that he is Ashurbanipal himself, ruling under a different name, and some think he is a different person. All however assume that the year Samash-sum-ukin died automatically becomes the accession year for Kandalanu.
If as many believe, Kandalanu was an appointee, there is no proof that he ascended to the throne in 648 BCE and thereby counting his regnal years from 647 BCE. If he was appointed in 647 BCE, his first year will commence in 646 BCE and reduce Nebuchadrezzar's reign by one year.
Given the doubts that remain in the minds of some academics as to the 'facts' of his reign, (not to mention the possibility of confusion over his 22nd year - which is another matter), there is no proof at this time that the chronology for Kandalanu is correct.
IN SHORT, there is no proof that Nebuchadrezzar reigned 43 regnal years, therefore, calculations that place 'THE' Battle of Carchemish in 609 BCE are not incontrovertible.
3. PART TWO:
That Nebuchadrezzar reigned 43 Regnal years + an accession year.
As stated in Point 1, the academics, although completely rejecting the chronological details of the previous 50 years, suddenly decided that the chronological references to the kings mentioned in this article, are correct, and from these ESTABLISH the chronology for these kings.
BUT, once you begin to talk about the reign of Nebuchadrezzar, you must once again REJECT Biblical chronological references, because they don't synchronise with his reign.
In Appendix 6 Chart, you will see that if you follow Wiseman's calculations for a 43 year reign for Nebuchadrezzar, commencing with his accession in 605 BCE, then by the standard of the 'King's Calendar', he ascended the throne in Jehoiakim's 2nd year, and commenced his first year in Jehoiakim's 3rd year. This is contrary to Scripture.
But you will say of course: "Why should we trust the 'King's Calendar?"
Well, if you count Jehoiachin's captivity as 37 solar years backtracked from Wiseman's figures for Nebuchadrezzar's 43rd year, then Jehoiachin ascended the throne of Judah in 599 BCE which is Nebuchadrezzar's 6th year, and THIS CONTRADICTS BOTH THE BIBLE AND THE BABYLONIAN CHRONICLES record of Nebuchadrezzar's invasion. By this standard, Jehoiachin will have commenced to reign two years before the invasion, and thus gives Zedekiah a 13 year reign instead of an 11 year one.
From that same chart, you will see that Thiele APPEARS to give Nebuchadrezzar a 42 year reign plus an accession year. This places Nebuchadrezzar's accession in 604 BCE, commencing his first regnal year in 603 BCE. Just where the King's Calendar Puts it.
When Nebuchadrezzar's reign in shortened by one year, the 17th year of Nabopolassar synchronisation with Josiah's death fails.
The point here, is that the neat package that academics have put together relying on Biblical Chronology, is completely flawed. They do not rely on Biblical Chronology, They manipulate it!(Academic Manipulation of Scripture)
4. That Jeremiah 46:2 is correct and Jeremiah 25:1 is wrong.
Academics believe that Jeremiah 46:2 correctly synchronises Nebuchadnezzar's (first) accession year with Jehoiakim's 4th. year, and thereby justifies placing Josiah's death in 609 BCE.
It has been demonstrated in Chapter Two that the Babylonian Captivity at the time of the Burning of the Temple, occurred in 586 BCE. When you reject that however, the year becomes 587 BCE. When you calculate back in solar year from that point, you arrive at 605 BCE as both Jehoiakim's 4th year and Nebuchadrezzar's accession year. AND ALL IS WELL WITH THE ACADEMIC WORLD.
HOWEVER: When you do that, you are required to mark 597 BCE as the FIRST REGNAL YEAR of Zedekiah, and that is not possible, for the Scriptures clearly states that by the beginning of Nebuchadrezzar's 8th regnal year (597 BCE by this standard), Jehoiachin was already on the throne. That means that Zedekiah did not start his first regnal year till the following year, and therefore cannot reign the eleven (11) years that Scripture assigns to him. IRONICALLY enough, it would require that his 11th year fall in 586 BCE.
What the Academics do to cover this situation, is assign to him only a 10 solar year reign plus one accession year in 597 BCE.
The basis for aligning Jehoiakim's 4th year with Nebuchadrezzar's accession year lies in the book of Jeremiah Chapter 46:2 which states....concerning the army of Pharaoh-neco king of Egypt, which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah
Firstly note that this is not the Battle of Carchemish in which Josiah died
This Scripture refers to a battle in Nabopolassar's last year, the year that Nebuchadrezzar ascended to the throne of Babylon. It clearly indicates that Jehoiakim's 4th year is Nebuchadrezzar's accession year.
However Jeremiah 25:1 states.....The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the people of Judah in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, that was the first year of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon;
In this quote, the fourth year of Jehoiakim is not the accession year but the first Regnal Year of Nebuchadrezzar. AND SO HERE WE HAVE A CONTRADICTION.
What happens here is that the academics then (for all their use of Scripture to back their opinions) then dismiss this Scripture in favour of the other.
It is not possible in this short article to address this matter, but Chapter Two of The 'King's Calendar' in section Six (6) addresses the issue at length.
THE BOTTOM LINE IS: The academics constantly pick and choose what Scriptures that suit them to provide PROOF that their chronologies are correct.
THE 'KING'S CALENDAR' does not. Furthermore, where there are Errors in Scripture, the 'King's Calendar' is able to demonstrate how they came about.
The Chronologies for the Reigns of the Kings of Judah
1. MANESSEH 686 BCE to 636 BCE
Manesseh reigned 55 artificial years from 687 BCE, commencing his first Regnal year in 686 BCE to reign 51 Solar years up until June 636 BCE.
2. AMON 636 BCE to 634 BCE
Amon reigned 2 artificial years commencing in June of 636 BCE. He commenced his first regnal year in Nisan of 635 BCE, and his second artificial year in May of 635 BCE, and died around about the time of Nisan of 634 BCE. He reigned only one true Regnal Year (and perhaps just made it to his second. I don't have the date for Nisan of that year).
3. JOSIAH 634 BCE to 606 BCE
Josiah reigned 31 artificial years commencing in April of 634 BCE, and may or may not have commenced his first regnal year at that Time. His last artificial year commenced in December of 607 BCE and ran through to November 606 BCE. He reigned 28 Regnal Years (assuming 634 BCE was his first). Since his son Jehoahaz succeeded him for 3 months, his death occurred no later than in September of 606 BCE, for Jehoiakim to commence his first artificial year in November of that year.
4. JEHOIAKIM 606 BCE to 596 BCE
Jehoiakim commenced in November of 606 BCE, reigning 11 artificial or 10 solar years until his death between February (11th artificial year) and April 3rd (Nisan) of 596 BCE.
Zedekiah commences in June 596BCE, commencing his first of 11 artificial years in January of 595 BCE, and commencing his first Regnal year in Nisan of that year. His 11th artificial year fell close to his 10th regnal year in Nisan of 586 BCE, and he died sometime between July and August of 586 BCE.
NEXT WEEK we will look at the chronologies for the Death of Jehoiakim, the accession of Jehoiachin, and the reign of Zedekiah.
Copyright 2013 is held by the nominated authors on this article page.
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About the KingsCalendar Publisher
R.P.BenDedek is the owner and Editor of KingsCalendar.com which was originally set up to publicize his research results into the Chronology of Ancient Israel. Those results were published under the title: 'The King's Calendar: The Secret of Qumran'.
Whilst there have been many attempts to solve the chronological riddle of the Bible's synchronisms of reigns of the kings of Israel and Judah and their synchronism with other Ancient Near Eastern Nations, no other research is based on a simple mathematical formula which could, if it is incorrect, be disproved easily. To date, no one has been able to dismiss the mathematical results of this research.
Free to air Academic articles set forth Apologetics for and results of his discovery of an "artificial chronological scheme" running through the Bible, Josephus, the Damascus Documents of the Dead Sea Scrolls, and Seder Olam Rabbah.
The Premise: Between the 5th and 3rd centuries BCE (but continuing down to at least 104 BCE), Sectarian redactors transcribed the legitimate 'solar year' chronological records of Israel and Judah, into an artificial form, with listed years as each comprised of 12 months of 4 weeks of 7 days, or 336 days per year, thus creating a 13th artificial year where 12 solar years existed.
When the Synchronous Chronological Data provided in the Books of Kings and Chronicles for the Divided Kingdom Period are measured in years of 336 days, the synchronisms actually align. [Refer to Appendix Five to see how it synchronises the Divided Kingdom Period]
General formula for Biblical Data conversion:
The formula for constructing the artificial calendar was:
'X' times 364 equals 'Y' days'Y' days divided by 336 equals 'Z' artificial years.Values are:'X' = any given number of 'real/solar' years364 = perceived days in the sectarian calendar'Y' = number of days calculated336 = number of days in an artificial year'Z' = artificial years = 1.083'X' and represents the original number of the converted years plus 8%.To reverse the process by hand:'Z' years times 336 equals 'Y' divided by 364 equals the Number of 'X' years converted.
To see how effective this method is, SEE:Appendix 5:Diagrammatic Reconstruction of Israelite History from 936 to 586 BCE:
The Principle of Linear Causality
The King's Calendar is a very simple approach to Biblical Chronology. It substitutes a value of 336 days for every year listed in Scripture. As far as the Divided Kingdom is concerned, when you use this 336 day year value, the synchronisms actually work. To see how effective this method is, SEE:Appendix 5: Diagrammatic Reconstruction of Israelite History from 936 to 586 BCE
Because it is a mathematical system, the King's Calendar must abide by certain mathematical rules, the most important of which, is that if you change any date for any day, month, or year every other day, month, or year is effected and must also change. It's like a 'domino effect'. Chronological references cannot be 'forced' to fit, and nor can they simply be ignored or 'compressed' as is the usual case with historians and archaeologists.
If any King's Calendar chronological determination disagrees with anything in the history books, it must argue the case as to why the history books are wrong, or why the evidence for an assertion is untrustworthy. If the King's Calendar successfully defends its' position, then the history books cannot be treated as definitive, and if the King's Calendar is 'proven' wrong, then every other chronological reference it provides is also wrong.
Because of this, the King's Calendar Chronological Reconstruction of Israel's history is unique, in that its' methodology can be scientifically (mathematically) tested and demonstrated to be either true or false. Its' chronological predictions are able to be 'proved' or 'disproved'.