How long were the Jews in Egypt: 400 years or 200 years?
I?m reading “Genesis and the Big Bang” by Gerald L Schroeder PhD and was
wondering if you noticed that he has a Biblical cumulative age for the
earth (post-Adam) of 5763 years. I?ve noticed that the Jewish people
also use this age, but when you add up the dates in the Bible, it comes
out closer to 6000. I?ve asked Jewish people about this and the
incongruity lies in the fact that they consider the Egyptian bondage to
have lasted only 200 years, rather than the 400 years which the Bible
states. I was just wondering if you?ve ever pondered this and/or
No, I have not seen the time in Egypt estimated to be as low as
200 years. I believe 200 years would be pretty low for the Israelites to
have expanded from the couple hundred or so who entered Egypt to 1-2
million who left Egypt. In fact, I would say that it would border on
impossible, unless one questions the census data in Numbers.
I have heard estimates for the period of the Judges as low as 200
years, which seems lower than biblical estimates. This would put the
Exodus at around 1280 BC, rather than the traditional 1450 or so BC.
Because Judges does not give a clear chronology, this is a possibility. In
the end, one is wise to not argue over such numbers, but thinking about
them and trying to discover a reasonable chronology can be helpful, both
for your faith and in order to answer the questions of others.