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Who Was the King Who Dreamed?

Modern researchers have tried to map the chronology of events in the history of Egypt as indicated by archaeological discoveries against the Biblical descriptions. Some of those researchers have outright regarded the story of Joseph as fiction. They are partially right because most of the contents about Joseph in the Talmud and some of the contents of the Bible are blatant untruths. However, it is a fact that Joseph did exist and he did take his people to Egypt. Hence, others have tried to identify the possible time frame and the king in whose reign it all happened. They have used different approaches and each approach has yielded very much different results, but none of them clear or conclusive.

Some people claim that it must have happened during Hyksos period because Hyksos (Amalekites) were semitic people from the Arabian/Palestinian area, not Egyptians. That is why they were called Hyksos, meaning the ‘foreign rulers’ or the ‘rulers of the foreign land’. Such researchers assume that it is more probable for them to make a fellow semite, Yoosuf, second-in-command than an Egyptian king. The name they usually suggest is Apophis (Auserre Apepi) or Apepi I (circa 1600-1559 BCE) from the 15th dynasty. This view was popular for some time until the Biblical scholars faced difficulty reconciling it with the Biblical chronology.

Some people have used the Bible as a guide. The Bible (1 Kings 6:1) mentions that the Temple of Solomon was built 480 years after the Exodus in the fourth year of Solomon, that is believed to be 966 BCE. They count back from that time to see which Dynasty was in power during that time. This places the Exodus in ca. 1446 BCE. Then Exodus 12:40 claims that Jacob came to dwell in Egypt 430 years before the Exodus. Thus he came to Egypt in ca. 1876 BCE. Thus, they conclude that Joseph ought to be dated in the Middle Kingdom. The most important king of the 12th Dynasty was Sesostris III (1878–1843 BCE), also known as Usurtasen III (Shakaura) and Senusret III (Khakaure) may have been the Pharaoh on the throne during the years of famine. The opinion of such people mainly rests on the belief that the Bible provides an accurate record of history, which is a giant leap of faith about a book that: claims the creation of Adam about 6,015 years ago (ca. 4004 BCE); or gives such information about age and genealogy that makes Abraham and Noah contemporaries for a period of about 58-60 years; or places Noah’s flood in 2348 BCE -- whereby all human beings on earth had died except for those who were in his ark -- without explaining where all the people came from in Egypt circa 3100 BCE, in Mehrgarh  (Pakistan) in 7000 BCE and in the Indus Valley (Pakistan) in 3,300 BCE and in Mohenjodaro (Pakistan) in 2,600 BCE all in village/city settings and brick and stone buildings.

A Jewish document from ‘Hope of Israel Ministries’ claims that the king who appointed Joseph his deputy was Wah-ku-Re Achtoy IV also known as Khety IV of the first intermediate period (around 2000 BCE). It arrives at this conclusion by counting back 400 years from the Exodus which it claims took place toward the end of the 12th dynasty in the Middle Kingdom. They seem to be miscounting because the 12th dynasty ruled around 1990-1760 BCE. Even if we take the end period such as 1800 plus 400 equals 2200 BCE, not 2000 BCE. Their main motive seems to be crediting Joseph for the design and construction of a sophisticated irrigation system in the Fayum area of Egypt, although there is no supporting evidence for that claim.

Another hypothesis is that Yoosuf was the vizier (prime minister) to king Djoser (the wise), also called Zoser, Dzoser, Zozer, Djeser, Djésèr, Netjerykhet (body of the gods), and Horus-Netjerichet, who reigned around 2630 – 2611 BCE according to some researchers, but as per radiocarbon dating, his reign began between 2691-2625, with a mean date of 2658 BCE. According to the discoveries so far, he is the first Egyptian king to ever have a vizier (a prime minister), named Imhotep, sometimes spelled Immutef, Im-hotep, Ii-em-Hotep, or Egyptian ii-m-ḥtp pronounced as *jā-im-ḥatāp, meaning "the one who comes in peace".

As a commoner at birth, Imhotep rose through the ranks quickly due to his genius, natural talents and dedication. He was the world's first named architect who built Egypt's first pyramid, is often recognized as the world's first doctor, a priest, scribe, sage, poet, astrologer, and a vizier and chief minister. He may have lived under as many as four kings. An inscription on one of those kings statues gives us Imhotep's titles as the "chancellor of the king of lower Egypt", the "first one under the king", the "administrator of the great mansion", the "hereditary Noble", the "high priest of Heliopolis", the "chief sculptor", and finally the "chief carpenter". About 2000, years after his death he was deified as god of healing and medicine and called son of Ptah (regarded as a creator god, the patron of architects, artists and sculptors).

In 1890 Charles Wilbour discovered this boulder on the island of Sahal (Sehel) at the Nile near Aswan Dam in Egypt, telling a story of Imhotep and a seven-year period of drought and famine during the reign of the 3rd dynasty king Djoser. The stela is thought to have been carved around 300BCE, about 2,300 years after the incident.

In addition, king Djoser was the first one to build pyramids, which is credited to his vizier Imhotep. The first pyramid complex (the step pyramid below) at Saqqara, Egypt was built during the reign of the pharaoh Djoser. The complex is unique -- nothing like it has ever been found. It was described by William Hayes as being a "veritable city in itself, planned and executed as a single unit and built of fine white limestone from the nearby Mukattam Hills." (The Scepter of Egypt, Vol. 1, p. 60.) 

In addition to the future burial site of the king, the complex included a walled-in center which contained huge grain bins. There was only one entrance into this center and there was an outside entrance into the system of storage bins. Surrounding the Step Pyramid is a very beautiful and elaborate wall containing 13 false entrances and one real. At the main entrance on the east wall at the southern end, one enters a long hall of 40 columns -- 20 on each side. Each column is connected to the main wall by a perpendicular wall, forming small rooms between each column. The Egyptologists think all these little cubicles were for statues, however, no pedestals were found in the remains, which is a very important point, because these statues were always erected on pedestals. Even if the statues were removed, the pedestals would have remained.

Exiting this colonnade and walking straight ahead yields a series of very large pits which extend deep into the earth.



Above is the staircase that leads to a central exit point for all the grain storage bins. (Photos from the Findings of Ron Wyatt).

There are eleven of them, with only one containing a very elaborate stairway all the way to the bottom. All the pits are connected to each other by a subterranean tunnel. It is reported that some grain was found in the floor of these pits, which has been explained by Egyptologists as having been from foods buried with the deceased who were buried there -- however, no evidence of burials was ever found in these pits. These pits are separate from the pharaoh's burial complex under the pyramid, where there are matching bins for the king and his family's afterlife, and grain and other food stuffs were found in those bins as well.

Considering the above mentioned information, it sounds more plausible than any other hypothesis that Imhotep may have been Yoosuf for the following reasons:

  • Unlike other Egyptian names, Imhotep is fitting with the personality of Yoosuf and Islamic in nature, without any idolatry in it, “the one who comes in peace (Islam).”
  • He is the first vizier in the records discovered so far; the subsequent kings just copied the concept;
  • There was a seven year famine in that period; and
  • The central storage area where Yoosuf himself was overseeing the sale of the grain would have been huge, such as the large pits found in this complex.
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