@Witness My Fury:
It is you who is the fool, the numb skull, the moron, the child, the mere student here. You claim to not understand my very simple post re Josephus, that would make you the fool. Or is it rather that you choose not to understand it, along with all the other evidence and problems presented against your precious 607 / 1914 date because of the horror that would result if you discover yourself to be in the wrong?
I never mentioned the year 1914 in anything I've stated here in this thread. As you read this thread, it is about 1914, but as I read this thread, it is about 607 BC and has nothing at all to do with 1914, even though in another context Jehovah's Witnesses do reckon the appointed times of the nations as beginning in 607 BC. Why do you mention this year, @WMF?
You need to approach the subject from a neutral position and go where the facts take you.
You first, @WMF. Read my reply to @AnnOMaly's post and let's see if you can take your own advice and "go where the facts take you."
I don't berate anyone, neither do I engage in deflection or obfuscation, and this last bit would be like the pot calling the kettle black, wouldn't it, @AnnOMaly?
LOL! It's a matter of permanent record now and it's sad that you persist in your foolishness.
What's a matter of permanent record?
What scriptural evidence there is, you ignore, and I've provided much [proof] that Jehovah God is not the liar that you make him out to be in your posts.
Again, this thread shows the reverse is true.
Should you or anyone point out a mistake on my part -- a typo -- I am quick to acknowledge my mistake, but you make a grave mistake in marginalizing Jehovah, in rejecting his word and declaring it to be false. I can be forgiven my mistakes, but you are speaking against the holy spirit, @AnnOMaly. Who will forgive you? (Matthew 12:32; Mark 3:29)
More shameless lies and more examples of your penchant for berating people! You've been asked on more than one occasion to desist making those kinds of slurs about me. *sigh*
I am not berating anyone. I am speaking the truth and you don't like hearing the truth. I get it.
The reason you do not reply to most of my (and some other posters') messages, eggie, is because I/we challenge your claims and assertions, asking awkward questions about them, pressing you to provide evidence. You know that you haven't a leg to stand on, so when berating, deflection and obfuscation don't work, you like to ignore.
Contrary to what you believe about me, I stand on two legs, and I am convinced that God is for me and against people like you. (Romans 8:31)
"Let him that thinks he is standing beware that he does not fall" (1 Cor. 10:12) - especially when that individual should be more than aware that Jehovah God hates "a false tongue" (Prov. 6:16-19).
Why would you be quoting Scripture to me? The Bible is sacred and you view God's word with contempt. You definitely have no respect for God's word.
There are many like you, @AnnOMaly, both here on JWN and elsewhere, that would rather Nebuchadnezzar's 18th year (Jeremiah 52:29), or 19th year if his accession year were included (Jeremiah 52:12), to have begun some 20 years later in 587 BC than in 607 BC, the latter being the year when Jehovah's Witnesses believe Daniel's "seven times" (Daniel 4:25) began to be counted, but the motive for throwing out 607 BC and accepting 587 BC is clearly to subvert Bible truth. But history argues a different point of view that is consonant with the viewpoint of Jehovah's Witnesses, a viewpoint that people like you reject, @AnnOMaly.
It's not a simple matter of preference. It's a matter of where the scriptural and historical evidence lead. Despite trying to bury readers here in your own mound of rhetoric, you cannot dodge the avalanche of evidence against Nebuchadnezzar's 18th year being 607 BCE.
What am I "dodging" exactly? I'm not dodging anything.
In this thread, the controversy over the secular dates given to the kings that once ruled in the Babylonian Dynasty of kings not being "consonant" with King Nebuchadnezzar's reign beginning in 607 BC, who the Bible makes clear was in his 18th regnal year when the 70-year period of exile of the Jews began in Babylon has given rise to doubts in some as to the reliability of the Bible, which unbelief is ostensibly based on historical king-lists, like what Ptolemy's Canon says about these Babylonian rulers.
You are still making it something it's not. It isn't 'Bible versus secular chronology/history' but rather 'Bible and secular chronology/history versus WTS interpretation.'
No, it isn't. I've not once in this thread used any WTS publication, but it is you, @WMF, @Farkel, and others here that are arguing with me as if I were arguing WTS interpretation (whatever that is!). I have primarily been using the Bible and making references to secular history. You may want to argue with one of Jehovah's Witnesses about our interpretation of Scripture, but I don't care to do that; it's unprofitable, especially if one is anti-God.
The Bible's testimony on this historical period harmonizes with the established chronology far better than it does with the WTS' chronology.
So what? Maybe you don't want this brought to your attention, but I've not been discussing WTS' chronology with you.
In addition, your own 'kings list' (specifically the years you say Nabonidus and Belshazzar ruled) cannot be substantiated either biblically or archaeologically.
So what? I'm telling you what I believe and I suppose you are telling me what you believe. In this message I'm going to be providing a little more about Josephus that I know you are not going to accept, but, again, I'm just telling you here what I believe. I'm not here to tell you what to believe. Frankly, I don't care what you believe, because you see nothing wrong with calling God a liar.
Along with Witness My Fury, I cannot understand why you appealed to someone as unreliable as Josephus is with chronology.
Wait! Hold on! In this very message, you yourself cite and quote from Against Apion I, xxi, a chapter that I did not mention in any of my posts, and you do so to make the ridiculous point that the 50 year "state of obscurity" to which Josephus refers in this chapter is proof that
the temple was desolate for 50 years, which is not a point of contention, but your appeal to "unreliable" Josephus here is to "prove" that Jerusalem and the land of Judah did not lie desolate for 70 years. Why the double-standard? Why is it ok when you do it and not ok when I do it?
Then when it is pointed out to you why he cannot be relied upon, you say you didn't need his help, babble about how you somehow thought I should have used him and deride WMF for being confused! You really are flailing about here (like the dying and enraged Pris in 'Blade Runner').
I don't know what you mean and I don't care. I do know that you did not point out to me, and neither did @WMF, why one cannot rely upon what things Josephus wrote. Actually, I believe the contrary to be the case, but neither of you proved that Josephus' writings were unreliable. I'm still waiting to see this "proof" that you evidently must have in your possession since you are going on about it here as if you have such. Where is it?
@Witness My Fury wrote:
He gives these reigns: (names given as in his writings)
Evil Merodach 18
Labossordacus 9 months
Baltasar (called Naboandelus by the Babylonians) 17 years.
Now that = approx 100 years (118 - 18) from destruction of Jerusalem in Nebs 18th year, to fall of Babylon in 539. That clearly is WRONG and does not support 607 any better than it does 587.
So what is all of this supposed to mean? The issue isn't of what Josephus' king-lists might consist. The issue is what the man writes in Antiquities of the Jews (Book X, Chapter ix) about Judah and Jerusalem being "a desert for seventy years," and what he writes in Against Apion (Book I, Chapter xix) about their being an "interval of seventy years, until the days of Cyrus" when Jerusalem had lied desolate. You seem more than a bit confused over the point I was making here regarding the historical writings of a Pharisee as to what the Jews believed as to the length of Judah's desolation, but there is absolutely nothing in what Josephus wrote that contradicts the point he makes about seventy years. You can dismiss it, ignore it, act like he didn't write it, but the "seventy years" that Josephus wrote about isn't going to go away.
Tsk, tsk, eggie! You really are shameless. The writings of this Pharisee also attested that the temple was desolate for 50 years and this agreed with their Jewish histories.
Against Apion, I, xxi: "These accounts agree with the true histories in our books; for in them it is written that Nebuchadnezzar, in the eighteenth year of his reign, laid our temple desolate, and so it lay in that state of obscurity for fifty years; but that in the second year of the reign of Cyrus its foundations were laid, and it was finished again in the second year of Darius."
Tsk, tsk, backacha! Either you suffer from a learning disability (also called "dyslexia"), or you thought you were being clever by quoting Against Apion I, xxi, which I did not cite, instead of Against Apion, I, xix, which I did cite.
Let me ask you this: How stupid do you think me to be? Maybe I'll just say here for the record that not only can I read, but I can comprehend what things I read. This particular sentence that you quoted in your message is taken out of the context in which Josephus was using in Against Apion when referring to "these accounts," which accounts Josephus says "agree with the true histories in our books." You read this sentence without given any consideration as to what historical "accounts" to which Josephus refers that he says are in agreement "with the true histories of our books." The sentence you quoted begins: "These accounts agree with the true histories in our books...." You clearly didn't understand what you were reading, @AnnOMaly.
In Against Apion, I, xix, that is to say, in Book I, Chapter 19, Josephus introduces Berosus as a fellow historian whose writings attest to Noah as being the progenitor of the Jewish race, wit the words: "I will now relate what hath been written concerning us in the Chaldean histories, which records have a great agreement with our books in oilier things also. Berosus shall be witness to what I say: he was by birth a Chaldean, well known by the learned...." Josephus explains that Berosus' historical accounts "at length comes down to Nabolassar, who was king of Babylon, and of the Chaldeans."
You should note right off that "these accounts" were written by Berossus, the Babylonian priest, the one to whom Josephus refers as "Berosus." I should point out that the "king of Babylon" at the beginning of this chapter 19 is Nabopolassar to whom Josephus refers as "Nabolasser," and that his reference to Nabopolassar's son is to Nebuchadnezzar to whom he refers as "Nabuchodonosor." Josephus goes on to relate how Berossus' accounts as to the kings of Babylon attests to how Nabopolassar had sent Nebuchadnezzar to subdue both the Egyptians "and our land," and upon his doing so, how Nebuchadnezzar had razed Solomon's temple "and removed our people entirely out of their own country, and transferred them to Babylon." Josephus momentarily stops quoting Berossus and adds after the semi-colon how "it so happened that our city was desolate during the interval of seventy years, until the days of Cyrus king of Persia," exactly what I quoted in my post.
Then Josephus explains that what he relates doesn't accord with his own historical accounts of the kings of Babylon, but with Berossus' own historical accounts, as made clear by the following words:
"I will set down Berosus's own accounts, which are these: 'When Nabolassar, father of Nabuchodonosor, heard that the governor whom he had set over Egypt, and over the parts of Celesyria and Phoenicia, had revolted from him, he was not able to bear it any longer; but committing certain parts of his army to his son Nabuchodonosor, who was then but young, he sent him against the rebel: Nabuchodonosor joined battle with him, and conquered him, and reduced the country under his dominion again. Now it so fell out that his father Nabolassar fell into a distemper at this time, and died in the city of Babylon, after he had reigned twenty-nine years."
Note that because Josephus is recounting the points of agreement Berossus' historical accounts as to the reigns of the kings of Babylon have with Jewish history, so he doesn't point out the discrepancy between Berossus' assignment of 29 years to Nabopolassar's reign and the 21 years that are assigned to his reign in Ptolemy's Canon. Josephus then goes on to relate in Against Apion, I, xx, that is to say, in Book I, Chapter 20, how Berossus "adds ... in his third book: "Nabuchodonosor, after he had begun to build the forementioned wall, fell sick, and departed this life, when he had reigned forty-three years; whereupon his son Evilmerodach obtained the kingdom."
Then in Against Apion, I, xxi, that is to say, in Book I, Chapter 21 -- a chapter you thought you understood, but didn't -- Josephus again points out that Berossus' historical accounts are in agreement "with the true histories in our books," and then after another semi-colon states that in Berossus' accounts "it is written that Nebuchadnezzar, in the eighteenth year of his reign, laid our temple desolate, and so it lay in that state of obscurity for fifty years, and after yet another semi-colon states concerning Zerubbabel's temple "that in the second year of the reign of Cyrus its foundations were laid, and it was finished again in the second year of Darius."
It is at this point that Josephus goes on to add, as "an indisputable and undeniable attestation to the antiquity of our nation," mention of the 54-year history of the Phoenicians until Cyrus became the king of Persia in 539 BC, to provide further support for "the true histories in our books" beginning with the 13 years of Nebuchadnezzar's siege of Tyre, which occurred "in the days of Ithobal," Tyre's king. In the records of the Phoenicians, "we have this enumeration of the times of their several kings" in Tyre, Josephus explains. Now Josephus does not provide the length of Ithobal's reign, but using Phoenician history, we can approximate when his reign ended since we know that "Cyrus became king of Persia" in 539 BC. This 54-year period is the 50 year "state of obscurity" to which Josephus refers, and your reading of Josephus here in Chapter 21 in Book I of Against Apion is utterly ridiculous! Again, you read the words, "fifty years," and concluded that you understood what Josephus was saying, but didn't.
Merbalus' brother, Hirom, reigned for 20 years (559 BC - 539 BC); Merbalus reigned for four years (563 BC - 559 BC); Balatorus reigned for one year (564 BC - 563 BC); Mitgonus and Gerastratus ruled as judges in Tyre for six years (570 BC - 564 BC); Abbar ruled as a judge for three months and Chelbes ruled as a judge for ten months (571 BC - 570 BC); Ecnibalus ruled for two months as a judge and Baal reigned as king for 10 years (581 BC - 571 BC). This means that if Nebuchadnezzar had "besieged Tyre for thirteen years in the days of Ithobal," that Ithobal's reign began before Nebuchadnezzar's siege on Tyre began in 607 BC and that Ithobal continued to be king 13 year later in 594 BC. We know that Baal ascended to throne of Tyre in 581 BC which is about the same time when Nebuchadnezzar's reign ended, and when Nebuchadnezzar's son, Evil-Merodach, ascended to the throne of Babylon in 581 BC. There's your timeline, @AnnOMaly, based on the Phoenician historical accounts as recounted by Josephus.
Now if by 581 BC Nebuchadnezzar's reigned totalled 43 years, then this means that his first regnal year was 624 BC, and in 625 BC when his father, Nabopolassar, died, this would have been Nebuchadnezzar's accession year. Josephus' point in relating all of this in Against Apion, Book I, Chapters 19-21, is to make the solitary point that "the records of the Chaldeans and Tyrians agree with our writings about this temple" in Jerusalem having laid "desolate during the interval of seventy years, until the days of Cyrus king of Persia."
We don't need 1st century AD Josephus or 2nd century AD Ptolemy to establish the correct time-line for the 7th and 6th centuries BC. There are thousands of ancient records contemporaneous with the neo-Assyrian, neo-Babylonian and Persian eras that do this instead. You should know that if you'd read GTR.
I don't believe Josephus referred to Ptolomy at all in what he wrote in Against Apion. He referred to Berossus and to "the records of the Chaldeans and Tyrians." As it happens, the records of Tyre help establish a timeline that lends support to the beliefs of Jehovah's Witnesses as to the destruction of Jerusalem and the desolation of Judah occurring in the year 607 BC.
Below is the text from Against Apion, Book I, Chapters 19-21:
19. I will now relate what hath been written concerning us in the Chaldean histories, which records have a great agreement with our books in oilier things also. Berosus shall be witness to what I say: he was by birth a Chaldean, well known by the learned, on account of his publication of the Chaldean books of astronomy and philosophy among the Greeks. This Berosus, therefore, following the most ancient records of that nation, gives us a history of the deluge of waters that then happened, and of the destruction of mankind thereby, and agrees with Moses's narration thereof. He also gives us an account of that ark wherein Noah, the origin of our race, was preserved, when it was brought to the highest part of the Armenian mountains; after which he gives us a catalogue of the posterity of Noah, and adds the years of their chronology, and at length comes down to Nabolassar, who was king of Babylon, and of the Chaldeans. And when he was relating the acts of this king, he describes to us how he sent his son Nabuchodonosor against Egypt, and against our land, with a great army, upon his being informed that they had revolted from him; and how, by that means, he subdued them all, and set our temple that was at Jerusalem on fire; nay, and removed our people entirely out of their own country, and transferred them to Babylon; when it so happened that our city was desolate during the interval of seventy years, until the days of Cyrus king of Persia. He then says, "That this Babylonian king conquered Egypt, and Syria, and Phoenicia, and Arabia, and exceeded in his exploits all that had reigned before him in Babylon and Chaldea." A little after which Berosus subjoins what follows in his History of Ancient Times. I will set down Berosus's own accounts, which are these: "When Nabolassar, father of Nabuchodonosor, heard that the governor whom he had set over Egypt, and over the parts of Celesyria and Phoenicia, had revolted from him, he was not able to bear it any longer; but committing certain parts of his army to his son Nabuchodonosor, who was then but young, he sent him against the rebel: Nabuchodonosor joined battle with him, and conquered him, and reduced the country under his dominion again. Now it so fell out that his father Nabolassar fell into a distemper at this time, and died in the city of Babylon, after he had reigned twenty-nine years. But as he understood, in a little time, that his father Nabolassar was dead, he set the affairs of Egypt and the other countries in order, and committed the captives he had taken from the Jews, and Phoenicians, and Syrians, and of the nations belonging to Egypt, to some of his friends, that they might conduct that part of the forces that had on heavy armor, with the rest of his baggage, to Babylonia; while he went in haste, having but a few with him, over the desert to Babylon; whither, when he was come, he found the public affairs had been managed by the Chaldeans, and that the principal person among them had preserved the kingdom for him. Accordingly, he now entirely obtained all his father's dominions. He then came, and ordered the captives to be placed as colonies in the most proper places of Babylonia; but for himself, he adorned the temple of Belus, and the other temples, after an elegant manner, out of the spoils he had taken in this war. He also rebuilt the old city, and added another to it on the outside, and so far restored Babylon, that none who should besiege it afterwards might have it in their power to divert the river, so as to facilitate an entrance into it; and this he did by building three walls about the inner city, and three about the outer. Some of these walls he built of burnt brick and bitumen, and some of brick only. So when he had thus fortified the city with walls, after an excellent manner, and had adorned the gates magnificently, he added a new palace to that which his father had dwelt in, and this close by it also, and that more eminent in its height, and in its great splendor. It would perhaps require too long a narration, if any one were to describe it. However, as prodigiously large and as magnificent as it was, it was finished in fifteen days. Now in this palace he erected very high walks, supported by stone pillars, and by planting what was called a pensile paradise, and replenishing it with all sorts of trees, he rendered the prospect an exact resemblance of a mountainous country. This he did to please his queen, because she had been brought up in Media, and was fond of a mountainous situation."
20. This is what Berosus relates concerning the forementioned king, as he relates many other things about him also in the third book of his Chaldean History; wherein he complains of the Grecian writers for supposing, without any foundation, that Babylon was built by Semiramis, (14) queen of Assyria, and for her false pretense to those wonderful edifices thereto buildings at Babylon, do no way contradict those ancient and relating, as if they were her own workmanship; as indeed in these affairs the Chaldean History cannot but be the most credible. Moreover, we meet with a confirmation of what Berosus says in the archives of the Phoenicians, concerning this king Nabuchodonosor, that he conquered all Syria and Phoenicia; in which case Philostratus agrees with the others in that history which he composed, where he mentions the siege of Tyre; as does Megasthenes also, in the fourth book of his Indian History, wherein he pretends to prove that the forementioned king of the Babylonians was superior to Hercules in strength and the greatness of his exploits; for he says that he conquered a great part of Libya, and conquered Iberia also. Now as to what I have said before about the temple at Jerusalem, that it was fought against by the Babylonians, and burnt by them, but was opened again when Cyrus had taken the kingdom of Asia, shall now be demonstrated from what Berosus adds further upon that head; for thus he says in his third book: "Nabuchodonosor, after he had begun to build the forementioned wall, fell sick, and departed this life, when he had reigned forty-three years; whereupon his son Evilmerodach obtained the kingdom. He governed public affairs after an illegal and impure manner, and had a plot laid against him by Neriglissoor, his sister's husband, and was slain by him when he had reigned but two years. After he was slain, Neriglissoor, the person who plotted against him, succeeded him in the kingdom, and reigned four years; his son Laborosoarchod obtained the kingdom, though he was but a child, and kept it nine mouths; but by reason of the very ill temper and ill practices he exhibited to the world, a plot was laid against him also by his friends, and he was tormented to death. After his death, the conspirators got together, and by common consent put the crown upon the head of Nabonnedus, a man of Babylon, and one who belonged to that insurrection. In his reign it was that the walls of the city of Babylon were curiously built with burnt brick and bitumen; but when he was come to the seventeenth year of his reign, Cyrus came out of Persia with a great army; and having already conquered all the rest of Asia, he came hastily to Babylonia. When Nabonnedus perceived he was coming to attack him, he met him with his forces, and joining battle with him was beaten, and fled away with a few of his troops with him, and was shut up within the city Borsippus. Hereupon Cyrus took Babylon, and gave order that the outer walls of the city should be demolished, because the city had proved very troublesome to him, and cost him a great deal of pains to take it. He then marched away to Borsippus, to besiege Nabonnedus; but as Nabonnedus did not sustain the siege, but delivered himself into his hands, he was at first kindly used by Cyrus, who gave him Carmania, as a place for him to inhabit in, but sent him out of Babylonia. Accordingly Nabonnedus spent the rest of his time in that country, and there died."
21. These accounts agree with the true histories in our books; for in them it is written that Nebuchadnezzar, in the eighteenth year of his reign, laid our temple desolate, and so it lay in that state of obscurity for fifty years; but that in the second year of the reign of Cyrus its foundations were laid, and it was finished again in the second year of Darius. I will now add the records of the Phoenicians; for it will not be superfluous to give the reader demonstrations more than enough on this occasion. In them we have this enumeration of the times of their several kings: "Nabuchodonosor besieged Tyre for thirteen years in the days of Ithobal, their king; after him reigned Baal, ten years; after him were judges appointed, who judged the people: Ecnibalus, the son of Baslacus, two months; Chelbes, the son of Abdeus, ten months; Abbar, the high priest, three months; Mitgonus and Gerastratus, the sons of Abdelemus, were judges six years; after whom Balatorus reigned one year; after his death they sent and fetched Merbalus from Babylon, who reigned four years; after his death they sent for his brother Hirom, who reigned twenty years. Under his reign Cyrus became king of Persia." So that the whole interval is fifty-four years besides three months; for in the seventh year of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar he began to besiege Tyre, and Cyrus the Persian took the kingdom in the fourteenth year of Hirom. So that the records of the Chaldeans and Tyrians agree with our writings about this temple; and the testimonies here produced are an indisputable and undeniable attestation to the antiquity of our nation. And I suppose that what I have already said may be sufficient to such as are not very contentious.