|Shishak - |
Sheshonk I in the monuments; first sovereign of the Bubastite 22nd dynasty. He comes before us without the ancient name of Pharaoh; he probably was a bold adventurer who supplanted the previous dynasty. Hence arose his hostility to Solomon, who was allied to a daughter of the former Pharaoh. By comparing Manetho and the monuments with 2 Chronicles 12:2-9 and 1 Kings 11:40; 1 Kings 14:25-28, we infer that the first year of Shishak corresponds to Solomon's 26th year, about 988 B.C. (980: Hincks); and the 20th of Shishak when he invaded Judah (969 B.C.) to Rehoboam's fifth year. Zerah probably succeeded Shishak and attacked Judah before the 15tb year of Asa. The name Shishak answers to Sheshach ("Babylon"), as Usarken and Tekerut, his successors, answer to Sargon and Tiglath, Semitic names; Namuret ("Nimrod") too is a name of princes of this line.
The tablet of Harpsen from the Serapeium (Lepsius) makes Shishak son of a chief named Namuret, whose ancestors are untitled and bear foreign names. Shishak took as the title of his standard "he who attains royalty by uniting the two regions of Egypt." He married the heiress of the Rameses family; his son and successor took to wife the daughter of the Tanite 21st dynasty. A Pharaoh of the 21st dynasty took Gezer in Palestine from the Canaanites (1 Kings 9:16) and gave it as a present to his daughter, Solomon's wife. It was only late in his reign that Shishak could, like that Pharaoh, carry on foreign wars. Shishak early in his reign received Jeroboam the political exile, fleeing from Solomon, Jeroboam's enemy, toward whom Shishak would feel only jealousy, having no He of affinity as the Pharaoh of the previous dynasty had. During Solomon's powerful reign Shishak attempted no attack.
The division of the tribes under Rehoboam gave Shishak the opportunity which he sought. (See REHOBOAM.) With 1,200 chariots and 60,000 horsemen, and Lubim, Sukkiim and Cushim without number, he took Judah's cities fortified by Rehoboam (2 Chronicles 11:5-12) and came to Jerusalem (2 Chronicles 12:2; 2 Chronicles 12:4-5; 2 Chronicles 12:9-12). (See SHEMAIAH.) Shishak has recorded this expedition on the wall of the great temple at Karnak; there is a list of the countries, cities and tribes, ruled, conquered, or made tributary by him, including many Jewish names, Taanach, Rehob, Mahanaim, Gibeon, Bethhoron, Kedemoth, Aijalon, Megiddo, Ibleam, Almon, Shoco, one of Rehoboam's fenced cities, etc. Telaim, Beth Tappuah, Golan, the circle of Jordan, the valley ('eemek), Beth Emek; Joshua 19:27), the Negeb or S. of Judah, Jerahmeelites, Rekem (Petra), and the Hagarites, are all specified;
(1) the Levitical and Canaanite cities are grouped together;
(2) the cities of Judah;
(3) Arab tribes S. of Palestine. Champollion reads in the inscription "the kingdom of Judah." Brugsch objects that the "kingdom of Judah" would be out of place as following names of towns in Judah, the supposed equivalent of "kingdom" (malkuwth) rather answers to "king" (melek). Shishak went to settle his protege, Jeroboam, in his northern kingdom, where he was endangered from the Levitical (2 Chronicles 11:13) and the Canaanite towns in northern Israel not being in his hands; these Shishak reduced and banded over to him.
Shishak contented himself with receiving Rehoboam's submission, and carrying away the accumulated temple treasures of David's and Solomon's reigns, the golden shields, etc.; and allowed him to retain Judah, lest Jeroboam should become strong. His policy was to leave the two petty kings as checks upon each other, letting neither gain strength enough to trouble himself. He was not strong enough to attack Assyria; so he contented himself with subjugating Palestine and the parts of Arabia bordering on Egypt, so as to make them an effectual barrier against Assyria's advance. An inscription in the Silsilis quarries mentions the cutting of stone for the chief temple of Thebes in Shishak's 22nd year. He appears in the temple at Thebes as "lord of both Upper and Lower Egypt." The lotus and the papyrus are both upon the shields carried before him; the "nine bows" follow, symbolizing Libya.