In questions of chronology, we have followed Archbishop Ussher’s dates without exception, as being the most learned, and logical, and completely consistent with Scripture’s internal evidence. This question revolves around the Scripture in Exo 12:40, which says in many modern versions, “The time that the people of Israel lived in Egypt was 430 years.” But the Authorized version (King James) has the most accurate translation from Hebrew into English:
“Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years.” Exo 12:40
This more accurate rendering has a subtly different meaning. Most chronologers who begin from the worldview of inerrancy of Scripture, believe that the sojourning of the children of Israel began with Abram’s arrival in the Promised Land (Gen 12:4). Abram was a sojourner in a land that was not his. From that date to the Exodus was 430 years.
This is the conclusion which Ussher drew from the internal evidence of all Scripture, both the Old and New Testaments, as well as the lifespan information included in the Scripture of the patriarchs, but he mentions his conclusion without detailing how he arrived at it. Dr. Floyd Nolen Jones, author of Chronology of the Old Testament, delves into the Scripture on this question in great detail. I have summarized some of Dr. Jones’ research here. But I would suggest anyone really interested in this topic to study Dr. Jones’ extensive research on it, which should settle all questions.
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