[b-hebrew] Ark of the Covenant

MarianneLuban at aol.com MarianneLuban at aol.com
Thu Aug 19 20:23:59 EDT 2004

In a message dated 8/19/2004 3:13:09 PM Pacific Daylight Time, 
hholmyard at ont.com writes:

> Dear Marianne,
> >Because that description fits me, I am unable to 
> >believe that Moses wrote the Torah.
> >In Genesis, in the story of Joseph, two men are named "Potiphar"
> >(called Petepres in the Septuagint).
> HH: I see only one man named Potiphar. The references I have are the 
> following:
> Gen. 37:36 ¶ Meanwhile, the Midianites sold 
> Joseph in Egypt to Potiphar, one of Pharaoh's 
> officials, the captain of the guard.
> Gen. 39:1 ¶ Now Joseph had been taken down to 
> Egypt. Potiphar, an Egyptian who was one of 
> Pharaoh's officials, the captain of the guard, 
> bought him from the Ishmaelites who had taken him 
> there.
> Gen. 39:4 Joseph found favor in his eyes and 
> became his attendant. Potiphar put him in charge 
> of his household, and he entrusted to his care 
> everything he owned.
> Gen. 39:5 From the time he put him in charge of 
> his household and of all that he owned, the LORD 
> blessed the household of the Egyptian because of 
> Joseph. The blessing of the LORD was on 
> everything Potiphar had, both in the house and in 
> the field.

What about Poti-phera, the priest of On, whose daughter Joseph married?  It 
is obviously the same name.

> >   As it happens, such a name was not used in Egypt until the latter
> >part of the Late Period of Egyptian history (1070-378 BCE).
> HH: First, you are forming the name in Egyptian 
> on the basis of the Hebrew. 

Why blame me?  The consensus is that the name is "P'di-Pre", going by the 
Petepres of the Septuagint.

So there is some room > for error there, isn't there? Second, it would be 
> hard for me to say that a name had not been used 
> in the United States for a two hundred year 
> period. So to say that a name that appeared in 
> Egypt at a late date could not have been used at 
> any time prior to that, a period of thousands of 
> years, seems a stretch.

Have you studied Egyptian prosopographia?  I have.  Until you do, just trust 
Any Egyptologist would tell you the same.  

> HH: Perhaps you had in mind the priest Potiphera:
> Gen. 41:45 Pharaoh gave Joseph the name 
> Zaphenath-Paneah and gave him Asenath daughter of 
> Potiphera, priest of On, to be his wife. And 
> Joseph went throughout the land of Egypt.
> Gen. 41:50 ¶ Before the years of famine came, two 
> sons were born to Joseph by Asenath daughter of 
> Potiphera, priest of On.
> Gen. 46:20 In Egypt, Manasseh and Ephraim were 
> born to Joseph by Asenath daughter of Potiphera, 
> priest of On.
> HH: The Hebrew saw a difference between the two 
> names, so we have to assume that Potipher and 
> Potiphera were two different names in Egypt, 
> don't we? Perhaps you're saying that this sort of 
> name does not appear, but that sounds sort of 
> impossibly omniscient to me.

Fine with me.  Believe as you like.  I say the names are one and the same.  
But how does one being Poti-phera and the other something else make any 
difference to what I said about the name not being in vogue until the Late Period?

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