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Monday, November 11, 2013

MOSES CROSSING THE RED SEA ARCHEOLOGY


And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left. And the Egyptians pursued, and went in after them to the midst of the sea, even all Pharaoh's horses, his chariots, and his horsemen.And it came to pass, that in the morning watch the LORD looked unto the host of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and of the cloud, and troubled the host of the Egyptians, And took off their chariot wheels, that they drave them heavily: so that the Egyptians said, Let us flee from the face of Israel; for the LORD fighteth for them against the Egyptians.And the LORD said unto Moses, Stretch out thine hand over the sea, that the waters may come again upon the Egyptians, upon their chariots, and upon their horsemen.And Moses stretched forth his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to his strength when the morning appeared; and the Egyptians fled against it; and the LORD overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea.And the waters returned, and covered the chariots, and the horsemen, and all the host of Pharaoh that came into the sea after them; there remained not so much as one of them.But the children of Israel walked upon dry land in the midst of the sea; and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left. Thus the LORD saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; andIsrael saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea shore. And Israel saw that great work which the LORD did upon the Egyptians: and the people feared the LORD, and believed the LORD, and his servant Moses.(Exodus 14:21-31)






New computer simulations have shown how the parting of the Red Sea, as described in the Bible, could have been a phenomenon caused by strong winds.

The account in the Book of Exodus describes how the waters of the sea parted, allowing the Israelites to flee their Egyptian pursuers.

Simulations by US scientists show how the movement of wind could have opened up a land bridge at one location.

This would have enabled people to walk across exposed mud flats to safety.

The results are published in the open-access journal Plos One.

The researchers show that a strong east wind, blowing overnight, could have pushed water back at a bend where an ancient river is believed to have merged with a coastal lagoon.

63mph winds from the east could have pushed the water back at an ancient river bend

With the water pushed back into both waterways, a land bridge would have opened at the bend, enabling people to walk across exposed mud flats to safety.

As soon as the wind died down, the waters would have rushed back in.

The study is based on a reconstruction of the likely locations and depths of Nile delta waterways, which have shifted considerably over time.

"The simulations match fairly closely with the account in Exodus," said the study's lead author Carl Drews, from the US National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR).

"The parting of the waters can be understood through fluid dynamics. The wind moves the water in a way that's in accordance with physical laws, creating a safe passage with water on two sides and then abruptly allowing the water to rush back in."

The study is part of a larger research project by Mr Drews into the impacts of winds on water depths, including the extent to which Pacific Ocean typhoons can drive storm surges.

By pin-pointing a possible site south of the Mediterranean Sea for the crossing, the study also could be of benefit to archaeologists seeking to research the account.

A way through

In the Book of Exodus, Moses and the fleeing Israelites became trapped between the Pharaoh's advancing chariots and a body of water that has been variously translated as the Red Sea or the Sea of Reeds.


The Biblical account says that, as the Pharaoh's army followed, the waters rushed in

In a divine miracle, the account says, a mighty east wind blew all night, splitting the waters and leaving a passage of dry land with walls of water on both sides.

The Israelites were able to flee to the other shore. But when the Egyptian Pharaoh's army attempted to pursue them in the morning, the waters rushed back and drowned the soldiers.

Other scientists have also sought to explain the account through natural processes.

Some have speculated that a tsunami could have caused waters to retreat and advance rapidly. But the scientists behind the latest research point out that such an event would not have caused the gradual overnight divide of the waters or have been associated with winds.

Other researchers have focused on a phenomenon known as "wind setdown," in which a particularly strong and persistent wind can lower water levels in one area while piling up water downwind.


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