The Merneptah Stele

Does this stone mention a decisive victory over "Israel" around 1215 B.C.? The Israel Stela also known as the Merneptah Stele is a slab of rock which was found in 1896 at Thebes, Egypt. The monument was found where it had once stood in ancient Egypt, at the temple that honored Pharaoh Merneptah. Some refer to the stone as the "Victory Stele" because it records the military campaigns and victories of Pharaoh Merneptah, the son of the mighty Ramesses II who reigned in Egypt around 1215 BC., during the time of the Judges in Israel. The writing on the stele is in hieroglyphs and very clearly mentions the name of Israel on it. Israel was considered by the Pharaoh of Egypt important enough to mention as a significant victory. The Hebrews had conquered the land of Canaan around 1400 B.C. The period of the Judges was a dark time in Israel's history because they had continually forsaken the Lord and served other gods, and there was continual turmoil in the land of Israel. Judges 10:6 - And the children of Israel did evil again in the sight of the LORD, and served Baalim, and Ashtaroth, and the gods of Syria, and the gods of Zidon, and the gods of Moab, and the gods of the children of Ammon, and the gods of the Philistines, and forsook the LORD, and served not him. The discovery of the Israel Stela is very important in the study of Biblical Archaeology. It is the oldest evidence for the existence of Israel in the land of Canaan in ancient times outside of the Bible. The text on the stone reads: "Canaan is plundered with every evil way. Ashkelon is conquered and brought away captive, Gezer seized, Yanoam made nonexistent; Israel is wasted, bare of seed." - Merneptah Stele [Read the Full Text.]

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