19 Now when Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them by way of the land of the Phillistines, although it was nearer; for God said, “The people may have a change of heart when they see war, and return to Egypt.”18 So God led the people roundabout, by way of the wilderness at the Sea of Reeds. Now the Israelites went up armed out of the land of Egypt.
19 And Moses took with him the bones of Joseph, who had exacted an oath from the children of Israel, saying, “God will be sure to take notice of you: then you shall carry up my bones from here with you.” 20 They set out from Succoth, and encamped at Etham, at the edge of the wilderness. (Exodus 13:18-20)
1 The LORD said to Moses: 2 Tell the Israelites to turn back and encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, before Baal-zephon; you shall encamp facing it, by the sea. (Exodus 14:1-2)
Few points from the above passages leads us to question this journey. God makes the children of Israel take a longer route rather than the short one, because “The people may have a change of heart when they see war, and return to Egypt.” Moses takes the bones of Joseph during his journey? This can be verified by Rashi's commentary
והעליתם את עצמתי מזה אתכם THEN YE SHALL BRING UP MY BONES AWAY HENCE WITH YOU — It was his brothers whom he made swear thus; consequently this tells us that they (the Israelites who left Egypt) must have brought up with them the bones of all Jacob’s sons (lit., the tribes) since it is said “with you” (with your own bones) (Mekhilta d'Rabbi Yishmael 13:19:11).
Soon after "They set out from Succoth, and encamped at Etham, at the edge of the wilderness." in the very next chapter verse 1, the Israelites are told to turn back and encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, before Baal-zephon.
Here's the problem, the Journey which Moses and the Israelites took would not have routed through the cave of Joseph in the field of Machpelah, near Mamre, according to the command of Yahweh as found in verses 18 and 19. Verse 20 tells us “They set out from Succoth, and encamped at Etham.” Pay close attention to those locations as we will show how the authors cocked up.
If you take a look at the map on the route taken by the children of Israel, you’ll see Moses could not have been able to travel all the way to the field of Machpelah, near Mamre. The route does not fall in his journey.
Take a close look at the map during the time of Moses. The Isralites journeyed from Egypt down towards the egde of the sea pass Succoth, heading further down towards the east leading them towards Migdol, which that pass and head to Etham. Yahwah decides to turn them back to encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdo, which again is further down south of Egypt. Goshen in Egypt where the children of Israel departed from is roughly 200-215 miles distance, east from Hebron, the field of Machpelah, near Mamre. How was Moses able to travel 215 miles pick dig up the bones and make it back to the Israelites? whats worse his distance back would be even longer since he would travelled west and then down south towards Succoth, Migdol and finally Pi-hahiroth where they encamped. This would make his journey twice if not three time longer. Roughly 600 miles or even more.
Note Exodus 13-19 is clear Moses took with him the bones of Joseph, this would have taken place during the journey.
We can conclude from all this; the story of Exodus has a serious inconsistency which cannot not be explained. Moses could not have made an 800-mile plus journey there and back and join his people especially when he was eighty plus years old (Exodus 7:7). it would take him 2 days minimum to travel from Goshen to Hebron, and for him to join the Israelite's would take him another 6 days to travel down south. ask yourself is that even possible, considering the time and place, animalss desert, bandits all sorts of problems.
The story cannot be true on Moses collecting the bones and the journey is absurt. Below is another problem found in the Talmud a dispute Christians should help answer.
The Gemara comments: The verses contradict each other, as it is written: “And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him” (Exodus 13:19), and it is written elsewhere: “And the bones of Joseph, which the children of Israel brought up out of Egypt” (Joshua 24:32). Who in fact took Joseph’s bones? (Talmud Sotah 13b:5)
Ask yourself can you really trust the Bible?
P.s. this article is a response to Ravi Zachariah who claims the Bible can tested from outside sources. well, looks like it's failed!