Topical Study tool for Students: Samuel, Saul, David: This particular excerpt comes from Seder Olam Rabbah (No.6): Time Compression: Samuel, Saul and David. The mishmash of information provided by Seder Olam Rabbah for Samuel, Saul and David is a predictable and natural consequence of trying to fit too much raw data into an unnaturally small amount of space (time). A gigabyte of information cannot be stored on a megabyte of floppy disk. It doesn't work unless you can compress it. There are 5 reasons why the narrative of Seder Olam Rabbah makes no sense.
Topic 12: Seder Olam Chronological Discrepancies regarding
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What does Seder Olam Actually record about Samuel, Saul and David?
The following in point fashion, is a list of Seder Olam Statements, some of which are 'editorial extrapolations' demonstrating the consequences' of what it says.
Samuel died aged 52 years – Samuel lived only to be 52 years and a little
Samuel Judged Israel 10 years - "The people of Kiriath Jearim came... And from the day the ark was installed at Kiriath Jearim, there were many days, they added to twenty years..." Subtract from these the seven years that David ruled over Judah at Hebron, there are left 13 years. Subtract from these 10 for Samuel himself and two for Samuel and Saul.13-2=11
They added to twenty years (Ark at Kiriath Jearim).
Samuel Judged Israel 11 years – "He (Eli) had judged Israel for 40 years." There are 13 years remaining. Subtract from them one year for Hannah’s pregnancy and 11 years for Samuel and 1 year for Samuel and Saul, one gets 52 years.
Samuel was old at the time Saul was made King
1 Samuel 1:1 And it came to pass, when Samuel was old, that he made his sons judges over Israel. :5 And they said unto him: 'Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways; now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.'
Saul was young and goodly when he became king 1 Samuel 9:1,16
Saul reigned only 1 or 2 years and died 4 months after Samuel – Samuel died before the death of Saul about four months as it is said...
David the Shepherd Boy killed Goliath, had a long war with Saul and Turned 30 in just 2 years.
"Now there was long war between the house of Saul and the house of David; and David waxed stronger and stronger, but the house of Saul waxed weaker and weaker"
Samuel anointed David in Saul's 2nd year
David was 29 years of age when he was first anointed – and -
Within 1 year, David the Shepherd boy was either 23 or 30 years old depending on whether 2 Sam 5:4 relates his age to his 1st or 7th year.
Young and Goodly Saul had a 40 year old son "Forty years was Ishbosheth when he became king and two years he ruled 2 Samuel 2:10. - therefore -
Saul was at least 55-60 years old at death, and therefore 53-58 years old when he became king
Saul at 55 years old was young and goodly yet Samuel was an old man at 52
David at 70 years was an 'old' man, but lived long enough to see his grandson Rehoboam born, despite the fact that Solomon (according to the Seder Olam) was only 12 years old at the time
Result: A Mishmash of Confusing Data.
Confusion: The Effect of Compressing Time and Events
The mishmash of information provided by Seder Olam Rabbah for Samuel, Saul and David is a predictable and natural consequence of trying to fit too much raw data into an unnaturally small amount of space (time). A gigabyte of information cannot be stored on a megabyte of floppy disk. It doesn't work unless you can compress it. But how does a hard copy of a compressed file read?
There are 5 reasons why the narrative of Seder Olam Rabbah makes no sense.
1. Specific chronological data pertinent to Joshua, Samuel and Saul is missing from the received Biblical Texts
2. That text contains erroneous and misleading chronological information for the Period of the Judges of Israel.
3. The 20 years assigned in the Book of Judges to the Ark of the Covenant at Kiriath Jearim is incorrect
4. The only 'apparently correct' chronological reference for this time period, 1 Kings 6:1, has been 'tampered with by the redactors', 'is corrupt', and now both 'misinterpreted and misapplied'.
5. Our approach to the historical records of Israel has been in error
We need to re-examine our 'traditional' approaches and opinions.
Revisiting the Biblical Record
a) 1 King's 6:1 - The King's Calendar.
The 480 years of 1 King's 6:1 are Artificial years
They were originally recorded as Solar years extending from the Exodus to Solomon's 1st year – From 1449 BCE to 970 BCE
They were transcribed into an artificial Calendar that ought to have shown 480 years from Entry into Canaan to Solomon's 4th year, but the reference first parameter was left as at Exodus whilst the final parameter was changed to Solomon's 4th year.
1 King's 6:1 actually records 480 Artificial years from the Entrance into Canaan to Solomon's 4th year.
Therefore The Time frame for the Period of the Judges plus King Saul = 480 less 4 years for Solomon, and 40 years for David = 436 years.
b) The Book of Judges: Period of the Judges.
We have already discussed the Period of the Judges in the last article, and determined that there were a total of 102 years that can be removed from the 450 years that the Book of Judges assigns to the Period of the Judges.
We removed 62 years from Ehud – Changing 80 years to 18 years.
We removed 40 years of Philistine Oppression during the judgeships of Samson and Eli.
Therefore 450 years – 102 = 348 years for the Period of the Judges to which must be added time for Joshua and Samuel.
From the total available 436 years [Section a)] subtract 348 years = 88 years
From these 88 years subtract 25 years [Josephus] or 28 years [Seder Olam] for Joshua, and the Balance for Samuel and Saul is either 63 or 60 years.
c) 1 Samuel 6:1 and 7:2 and the Ark of the Covenant
The two references in the Book of Samuel to the Ark of the Covenant are the result of redactorial alteration. They should read
a)1 Samuel 6:1 1 And the ark of the LORD was in the country of the Philistines 70 years (not 7 months).
b) 1 Samuel 7:2 And it came to pass, from the day that the ark abode in Kiriath-jearim, that ... all the house of Israel yearned after the LORD
From these 70 years remove 7 years as they apply to David, and the Balance is 63 years for the Period of Samuel and Saul.
63 years for Samuel and Saul is one of the optional results in Section b) above.
Result: Samuel and Saul share a combined total of 63 years of the Total 480 years that transpired between the Entrance into Canaan and Solomon's 4th year.
Samuel & Saul: The Correct Chronology
The King's Calendar computer generated mathematical application of the Biblical and Extra Biblical Data calculates the data for this time frame under discussion, to include:
Entrance to Canaan – 1412 BCE
Judgeship of Joshua – 25 years (as per Josephus)
Book of Judges Data – 450 years less 102 years = 348 years
Samuel 32 years
Saul 31 years
David 40 years
Counting 4 years of Solomons Reign
To arrive at a total of 480 Artificial Years
Which Extends between Entrance into Canaan in 1412 BCE until and including Solomon's 4th year in 973 BCE
Failing a Paroxysm of Religious Denial, one must concede that the narrative and chronological data provided in, 'The Book of Judges' (for the Period of the Judges), The Book of Samuel Chapter 6:1 & 7:2 (Ark of the Covenant) and the narrative detail in 1 Kings 6:1 Masorete, (480 years) and Septuagint (440 years), is in error.
The King's Calendar: The Secret of Qumran, which is a mathematically computer generated synchronism of Biblical Chronological data, provides the best demonstration of the correct chronology for this time period.
From Entry into Canaan there are 480 artificial years to Solomon's 4th year, of which 44 can be ascribed to David and Solomon, 348 can be ascribed to the Period of the Judges (by correcting the Book of Judges) 25 years can be deducted for Joshua (as per Josephus), leaving a balance of 63 years for Samuel and Saul.
Since 2004 he has been writing academic articles, social commentaries and photographic 'Stories from China' both here at KingsCalendar, and formerly as a contributing columnist at Magic City Morning Star News (Maine USA) where from 2009 to 2015 he was Stand-in Editor. He currently has a column at iPatriot.com and teaches English to Business English and Flight Attendant College Students in Suzhou City Jiangsu Province People's Republic of China.)
BenDedek originally created the site 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. Check the Chapter Precis Page to see details of each chapter and to gain access to the Four Free to Air Chapters
(The Download book does not contain a section on Seder Olam)
Definition: King's Calendar Chronological Research
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 5. to see how it synchronises the Divided Kingdom Period]