Israel God Names
Rock Art and Israel God name YH.
The earliest engraved forms of Israel God’s name found in the Negev Desert include names such as YAH, YHH, all are variations of the Hebrew root word YH an Israel god proper name. The Hebrew script and its precursor, the Proto-Sinaic Alphabet, invented by Semites working in the Egyptian mines in Sarabit-el-Haddam dated 1900BC. Due to its simplicity, it popularized throughout the ancient world and many ancient nations, Canaan, Phoenicia, Greece, adapted its concept that later became the base of all alphabets in the world.
Biblical Negev Desert Nations
The Bible enumerates the Negev Desert nations and all related to Abraham, Fig.2. The Midianites are descendants of Midian, Abraham son, the Edomites are descendants of Esau, Jacob’s brother and the Ammonites and Moabites are descendants of Lot, Abraham nephew. Ishmaelites are descendants of Ishmael, Abraham son. All Negev Desert nations descended from the same father and belong to the same tribe.
Each nation believed in a unique protecting god; he was a ruler of gods and men alike. They attributed their god magical powers that affected both the national and the cosmic levels and assured his people well being. In Egypt, the deity’s name was Ra and in Mesopotamia, it was Ea, in Canaan, the major gods were El and his consort Asherah, in Edom –Kos, in Ammon –Malcham, in Moab –Kamush, in Aram–Haddad and in Phoenicia and Ugarit –Baal, in Midian – Yahu.
Shasu Yahu People in the Negev Desert
The Egyptian records, dating from the 18th Dynasty (1550–1295 BC), describe the people living in the Negev Desert area, they call them the Shasu-Yahu, a common way to identify uniquely a tribe by its name and its dwelling location. According to Egyptian sources, the Shasu tribe god named YAHU, a name ending found in modern Israeli names, such as Ishayahu and Eliyahu.
The geographical list of Pharaoh AmenhotepIII (eighteenth dynasty, 1379-1417 BC) found in Nubian temple describes the Shasu as scattered tribes in the wilderness of Faran, Edom, Midian, and Kushan. According to Egyptian records, the Shasu encampment includes, see Fig2, the ‘hill country of Seir’ in South Canaan and the country of Yahu’. Records from the memorial tomb of Ramses II (1213-1303 BC) describe that he robbed Shasu land and conquered Mount Seir. Ramses III, nineteenth dynasty (1154-1186 BC), announced that he conquered Seir and destroyed the tribes of Shasu.
Israel God name YH in Negev Desert rock art
A variation of the Proto-Sinaic Alphabet traveled through the Negev Desert and established itself as a local Alphabet called Old Negev dated 2nd to 1st millennium BC. There are minor differences between the two scripts mainly in the letters YH that corresponds to the Hebrew letters (יה), Israel gods’ name. Fig.1 shows the transformation and differences of YH from the Proto-Sinaic script and the Old Negev found on a Massebah from Paran River.
More than 140 rock art panels have been identified in the Negev Desert with affinity to Israelite god name including engraving such as “EI YAH“, YAHU” and “YAH“. The content suggests that these people observed a covenant with the Shasu God worshipped in the same area and time period. The letters of God’s name YAH, see Fig2, have many similarities to the original Proto-Sinaic Alphabet.
Fig2 Engraving of Israel god names YAH from Negev Desert, Israel
The God’s name YH (יה) found in Negev Desert rock art signifies the dwelling region of people worshipping this god. In the Bible it is written that Israel God always appeared from the south: “went out of Seir” and “marched out of Edom” (Judges 5:4-5) – an area ranging from Sinai across the Negev Desert. It is the oldest written Israel God name, evidence unambiguous and easy deciphered, engraved forever on Negev Desert rocks! They are found only in Paran Desert, the Negev Desert Southern part, in the Midianite tribe territory. Does it mean: that Israel originated from the Negev Desert?
More deciphering, in a new book Rock Art in Israel, available online.
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