(NOTE: Some of the themes of these articles may not be appropriate for young readers. Please keep that in mind when sharing this information).
It is written:
“till another king arose who did not know Joseph.” (Acts 7:18)
Another powerful evidence which demonstrates the inspiration of the Bible may be drawn from the field of archaeology.
Now, archaeology of itself does not serve as proof that the Bible is inspired of God. However, it stands as a powerful evidence that the Bible is historically accurate and reliable-and this reliability extends to the authenticity of the miraculous aspects of the Bible’s claims.
Consider some of the ways in which archaeology confirms one of the most remarkable characters of Scripture: Joseph.
Being sold into Egyptian slavery by his jealous brothers, Joseph was falsely accused of rape and put in prison. Two years later, the Pharaoh of Egypt had a dream that terrified him. Being told by a former prisoner of Joseph’s power to interpret dreams, the Pharaoh was informed that there would be seven years of great abundance in the crops of Egypt, which would then be followed by seven years of terrible famine in the entire world. The Pharaoh appointed Joseph to create huge warehouses where grain and other foods could be stored, since people all over the world would come to Egypt for food (see Genesis 37-50).
For years, skeptics of the Bible have dismissed these accounts as being untrustworthy and inaccurate. However, the findings of archaeology have confirmed the Biblical testimony.
First, ancient documents from Egypt confirm that there was indeed a period of seven years of abundance in the crops, followed by seven terrible years of famine.
“We dwelt at ease in this castle a long tract of time; nor had we a desire but for the region-lord of the vineyard. Hundreds of camels returned to us each day at evening, their eye pleasant to behold in their resting-places. And twice the number of our camels were our sheep, in comeliness like white does, and also the slow moving kine. We dwelt in this castle seven years of good life—how difficult for memory its description! Then came years barren and burnt up: when one evil year had passed away, then came another to succeed it. And we became as though we had never seen a glimpse of good. They died and neither foot nor hoof remained. Thus fares it with him who renders not thanks to God: His footsteps fail not to be blotted out from his dwelling.” (Charles Forster, Sinai Photographed (London: Richard Bentley, 1862))
Another inscription from the ancient world is worthy of our consideration. The tomb of this woman from Yemen (dated to around the time of Joseph) is enlightening:
“In thy name O God, the God of Hamyar, I Tajah, the daughter of Dzu Shefar, sent my steward to Joseph, And he delaying to return to me, I sent my hand maid With a measure of silver, to bring me back a measure of flour: And not being able to procure it, I sent her with a measure of gold: And not being able to procure it, I sent her with a measure of pearls: And not being able to procure it, I commanded them to be ground: And finding no profit in them, I am shut up here. Whosoever may hear of it, let him commiserate me; And should any woman adorn herself with an ornament From my ornaments, may she die with no other than my death.” (Rule and Anderson, Biblical Monuments, 9).
Please notice that this inscription specifically refers to Joseph, and to the fact that he was a high-ranking official in the Egyptian government who was charged with with overseeing the flour and grain.
Finally, a large cache of ancient Egyptian coins further confirms the Bible narrative:
“Recent research conducted on previously overlooked Egyptian coins confirms the biblical story of Joseph and his role in government service in ancient Egypt. In 2009, archaeological authorities from the Egyptian National Museum announced that a cache of ancient coins had been “rediscovered.” Initially discovered almost a century earlier, the coins had been in storage. They were uncovered in the vast storage vaults of the national museum and the Antiquities Authority. Cairo’s Al Ahram newspaper reported that the coins bear the name and image of the biblical Joseph.21 The cache of more than five hundred coins had been set aside decades earlier in the belief that they were miscellaneous objects of worship and likely of no significance. However, scientists re-examined the coins using recently developed technology and discovered that a number of them dated to the time of ancient Egypt. Most of the coins were engraved with the year they were minted and their monetary value and the effigies or images of the pharaohs ruling Egypt when the coins were minted. Researchers concluded that the “Joseph coins” originated in the period when Joseph served as Pharaoh’s treasurer—during the seven years of plenty and seven years of famine (see Genesis 41:41–45). Biblical history suggests a date for Joseph’s high position in the Egyptian government that coincides with the date of the minting of the coins in the cache (approximately 2000 B.C.). Amazingly, some of the coins bear both Joseph’s name and image.” (Grant R. Jeffrey, The Signature OfGod: Conclusive Proof That Every Teaching, Every Command, Every Promise In The Bible Is True, 69-70 (Kindle Edition); Waterbrook Press)
Archaeology confirms the Bible.