The Bible says in 2 Kings 15:27, that Pekah reigned for 20 years. No one credits him with such a reign. The 'King's calendar' likewise finds this reference erroneous, and although granting to him a longer reign than does anyone else, it demonstrates that in fact he only reigned 12 Regnal/solar years or 14 artificial years. The most logical explanation for this error is that it is a transcription error altering twelve to twenty. According to 2 Kings 16:5 King Ahaz, Jotham's successor, sent to Tiglath-Pileser III for assistance against Rezin of Damascus and Pekah of Samaria (Israel) during their campaigns from 734 to 732 BCE. There are two different accounts of this appeal. In One, the Assyrian King comes to Ahaz' help, and in the other, he does not. Explanation for this error can be found in the fact that it was not Ahaz, but Jotham who successfully appealed to the Assyrian Monarch during the Campaigns from 734 - 732 BCE. References to Ahaz going to Damascus to meet with the King of Assyria, will in fact refer to Ahaz going to meet with Tiglath-Pileser's successor Shalmaneser, before or after the commencement of the siege of Samaria which ultimately resulted in the end of Hoshea's reign.
Truth and Error in Scripture Academic Newsletter No. 10 Series II - Truth & Error
In the first series of Newsletters, numerous Biblical Situations were touched upon in defense of both Biblical chronology and the 'King's Calendar' Artificial chronology. In Academic Newsletter No 3 (Academic Opinion versus Fact) and Academic Newsletter No 4 (Academic Disagreements - Jotham's governorship), we did in fact touch upon the reigns of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah. In last week's newsletter Series II Truth & Error No. 9, we looked at Manasseh's captivity.
This Week, I want to revisit all of these issues and put them into a chronological order of events in preparation for issues to be discussed in the coming weeks, such as the deaths of Josiah and Jehoiakim.
Starting with Jotham, we will trace the chronological order of events, and along the way, point out what is true and false in the Biblical chronoloical record.
Jotham King of Judah Timeframe
You may remember that some people have dated Jotham's governorship to the year 750 BCE, based upon references by Josephus to an earthquake at that time. The 'King's Calendar' in fact, commences his governorship in October of 749 BCE. This is the 46th year of his Father Uzziah and the 7th year of Menehem.
In his 5th Artificial year commencing in July of 745 BCE, the son of Menehem of Israel commences to reign. Pekahiah commenced to reign in the 50th year of Uzziah, and reigned two years (2 Kings 15:23). In Uzziah's 52nd and last year (7th year of Jotham's governorship), Pekah killed Pekahiah and began to reign for twenty years.
ERROR No 1
Pekah of Israel reigned 20 years.
The Bible says in 2 Kings 15:27, that Pekah reigned for 20 years. No one credits him with such a reign. The 'King's calendar' likewise finds this reference erroneous, and although granting to him a longer reign than does anyone else, it demonstrates that in fact he only reigned 12 Regnal/solar years or 14 artificial years. The most logical explanation for this error is that it is a transcription error altering twelve to twenty.
Although coming to the throne in 743 BCE, Pekah's first Regnal year commences in Nisan of 742 BCE, and he dies shortly after his 12 th year commences in 731 BCE. His reign however covers 14 artificial years.
TRUTH No 1
Jotham commences to reign in the second year of Pekah.
Because the artificial year is shorter than the true solar year, by the time that Pekah arrived at the commencement of his First Regnal Year, he was also about to commence his second artificial year of reign. According to 2 Kings 15:32, it was at this time that Jotham commenced to reign for 16 artificial years.
ERROR No 2
Ahaz appeals to Tiglath-Pileser for help against Rezin and Pekah.
According to 2 Kings 16:5 King Ahaz, Jotham's successor, sent to Tiglath-Pileser III for assistance against Rezin of Damascus and Pekah of Samaria (Israel) during their campaigns from 734 to 732 BCE.
There are two different accounts of this appeal. In One, the Assyrian King comes to Ahaz' help, and in the other, he does not. Explanation for this error can be found in the fact that it was not Ahaz, but Jotham who successfully appealed to the Assyrian Monarch during the Campaigns from 734 - 732 BCE. References to Ahaz going to Damascus to meet with the King of Assyria, will in fact refer to Ahaz going to meet with Tiglath-Pileser's successor Shalmaneser, before or after the commencement of the siege of Samaria which ultimately resulted in the end of Hoshea's reign.
In August 734 BCE, Jotham commenced his 17th artificial year since becoming governor; as well as his 9th Regnal/Solar year and 10th Artificial year since becoming King. Pekah at this time was in his 9th Regnal Year and 11th artificial year.
TRUTH No 2
Pekah was slain in the 20th year of King Jotham of Judah.
2 Kings 15:30 says that Pekah was slain in the 20th year of Jotham. In May of 731 BCE Jotham commenced his 20th artificial year of reigning in Judah since taking over from his father. It was however only his 12th Regnal year and 13th Artificial year. Pekah had commenced his 12th Regnal year and 14th Artificial year.
ERROR No 3
Hoshea commences to reign in the 12th year of Ahaz.
2 King's 17:1 says that Hoshea came to the throne of Samaria in the 12th year of Ahaz. In fact at this time, Jotham was in his 20th year since he took over from Uzziah; his 13th artificial year since he became king, and his 12th Regnal/solar year, since he became king in his own right.
It was in Jotham's 12th year, not Ahaz' that Hoshea became king in Samaria.
TRUTH No 3
Jotham reigned for 16 years.
Jotham reigned for 16 years 2 Kings 15:32. By the time that Jotham died, he had been on the throne for 23 artificial years, reigning as king for 16 of these artificial years. He did in fact only celebrate 15 Regnal/solar years.
16th Year of Jotham Since he commenced co-regency 8th Solar Year of Jotham in his own right. 9th Artificial Year of Jotham in his own right 10th Artificial Year of Pekah of Israel
Hezekiah commences to reign in the 3rd year of Hoshea.
2 Kings 18:1 In the 3rd year of Hoshea, Hezekiah commences to reign. In fact it was Ahaz that commenced to reign in that year. This was Jotham's last year, and Ahaz' accession year. He does not in fact commence his first artificial year until January of 727 BCE, commencing his first Regnal year at Nisan (March/April). Since we shall soon see that 701 BCE is Hezekiah's 14th year, 727 BCE cannot be his first Regnal year.
ERROR No 5
Hoshea and Hezekiah reigned contemporaneously.
According to 2 Kings 18, The siege of Samaria commences during the fourth year of Hezekiah's reign. This is demonstrably incorrect and instead occurs during the reign of Ahaz
TRUTH No 4
The synchronisation of reigns between Israel and Judah.
2 Kings 18 indicates that the siege of Samaria occurred between the 7th and 9th years of Hoshea and the 4th and 6th years of (Hezekiah - read Ahaz) the King of Judah.
The siege in fact commences in the 7th regnal/solar year of Hoshea in 724 BCE, which is the 4th Regnal/Solar year of Ahaz, and ends in the 9th Regnal/Solar year of Hoshea, in the 7th Regnal/solar year of Ahaz.
The synchronisation is correct.
ERROR No 6
Ahaz reigned 16 years.
Although 2 Kings 16:2 says that Ahaz reigned 16 years, in fact he reigned only 13 Regnal/solar years and 15 Artificial years. The total would be 16 artificial years if one were to add the accession year, which is probably how the error occurred.
TRUTH No 5
701 BCE was the 14th year of Hezekiah.
2 Kings 18:3 indicates that Sennacherib invaded Judah during the 14th year of Hezekiah, and this has been dated by historians to 701 BCE.
Hezekiah commenced his 14th Artificial year in November of 702 BCE. This artificial year lasts until October of 701 BCE. He commenced his 14th Regnal/Solar year in Nisan (March/April) of 701 BCE. In both artificial and real years, Hezekiah's 14th "YEARS" coincide between March and October 701 BCE.
TRUTH No 6
Hezekiah reigned 29 years.
2 Kings 18:2 indicates that Hezekiah reigned 29 years. These are artificial years, the last of which commences in October of 688 BCE. In true solar years he reigned for 27 years, commencing his final year in Nisan of 688 BCE.
TRUTH No 7&ERROR No 7
Hezekiah's lifespan extended by 15 years - 2 Kings Chapter 20.
The events recorded in the Bible concerning Hezekiah's life are a 'mishmash'. The narrative was compiled from numerous records, and much of the detail is confused. The redactors make Hezekiah's healing appear as though it was around the same time as Sennacherib's invasion. From that perspective, Hezekiah did in fact live for another 15 artificial years. THIS IS TRUE.
HOWEVER, the events surrounding his illness and the envoys from Merodach Baladan clearly dictate that the story of the healing belongs to a much earlier time. It is more fitting that the healing occurred not after Sennacherib's invasion, but after Sargon's Ashdod Campaign 714-712 BCE.
Within the details listed in 2 King's Chapters 18-20, one can see that part of the story belongs to this earlier period in the reign of Hezekiah which did not result in a siege of Jerusalem.
It was after this troubled period, and before Merodach Baladan was deposed, that Hezekiah became ill and was healed. The event occurs sometime between 714 and 710 BCE. It is therefore possible to calculate that Hezekiah in fact lived another 25 artificial years. From this perspective, it may be considered that the currently recorded 15 years is either a transcription error, or a later redactorial 'erroneous' correction.
TRUTH No 8
Manesseh reigned 55 artificial years.
2 Kings 21:1 records that Manesseh was 12 years old when he commenced to reign and reigned 55 years. The Bible makes no mention of reigning with his father and nor is it necessary within the artificial chronology of the 'King's Calendar'
His first artificial year commences in September of 687 BCE and his last commences in July of 637 BCE. His true regnal years commence in Nisan of 686 BCE and extend to and include Nissan of 636 BCE.
He reigned 51 Solar years.
TRUTH No 9
The years ascribed to Manesseh, Amon, Josiah, Jehoiakim, Zedekiah.
Scripture states that Manesseh reigned 55 years; Amon reigned 2 years, Josiah reigned 31 years, and Jehoiakim and Zedekiah each reigned 11 years, for a total of 110 years.
The academics believe this, for if you add these 110 years to the year 586 or 587 BCE (the dates used for the end of Zedekiah's reign), the result is that Manesseh commenced to reign in 696 BCE or 695 BCE. Since Scripture does not mention anything about Manesseh co-reigning with his father, we are at liberty to assume one. THE 'KING'S CALENDAR' DOES NOT.
Manesseh commences co-reigning with Hezekiah in 696 or 695 BCE and ends his reign in 642 or 641 BCE.
Amon commences in 641 or 640 BCE
Josiah commences in 639 or 638 BCE and dies in either 609 or 608 BCE
Jehoiakim commences in 608 or 607 BCE and dies in 598 or 597 BCE
Zedekiah commences in 597 or 596 BCE and dies in 587 or 586 BCE.
ACADEMIC ERROR No 8
Manesseh must as a baby, have co-reigned with Hezekiah.
The 'King's Calendar' chronology for this period demonstrates that this is not born out by the chronological data.
The Biblical Chronological Data as applied by the 'King's Calendar' indicates:
1. 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 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 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 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.
5. Zedekiah commenced his first of 11 artificial years in January of 595 BCE, 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.
Two important things to note:
1. In what has been presented here, there appear to be only two CHRONOLOGICAL errors within the Biblical Material, and both of them can be seen to be transcription errors.
2. The rest of the errors to be found in the Biblical Material, relate to the "name/identification" of the kings mentioned. When the chronological material "alone" is followed, these misidentifications become obvious. When the identifications "alone" are followed, the listed chronological data becomes untenable.
Having reviewed these Errors and Truths and put them into chronological perspective, Next week we will continue by examining some of the common errors made by historians in their quest to rewrite Biblical Chronology.
Copyright 2013 is held by the nominated authors on this article page.
The Download book does not contain a section on Seder Olam
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'.