4,000-year-old tablet reveals marital arrangement similar to Abraham and Hagar in the OT

4,000-year-old tablet reveals marital arrangement similar to Abraham and Hagar in the OT

The Culture

“So Sarai, Avram’s wife, took her maid, Hagar the Egyptian—after Avram had dwelt in the land of Canaan ten years—and gave her to her husband Avram as concubine.” Genesis 16:3 (The Israel Bible™)

A recently published study presented a  4,000-year-old cuneiform tablet that was an Assyrian marriage contract closely resembling the arrangement between Abraham and Hagar but with significant differences. Some media, apparently more well-versed in pagan practices than the Bible, have made some seriously flawed conclusions about the discovery, while researchers missed some glaring revelations the Bible could have offered in their archaeological study.

The baked clay tablet is a Mesopotamian marriage contract between a man and woman named Laqipum and Hatala. As part of the prenuptial agreement, the husband was allowed the option of employing the help of a surrogate mother if the couple failed to conceive a baby two years after the date of marriage.

“The female slave would be freed after giving birth to the first male baby and ensuring that the family is not be left without a child,” Professor Ahmet Berkız Turp from Harran University’s Gynecology and Obstetrics Department said to the Daily Sabah. “As divorce was not an option for infertile couples in Assyrian culture, and monogamy was valued, this clause gave a way to continue in the marriage and grow families who struggled to conceive.

If grounds for divorce were met, the tablet laid out the terms of payment for both spouses. According to the study recently published by researchers in the medical journal of Gynecological Endocrinology, the inscription reads: “Should Laqipum choose to divorce her, he must pay [her] five minas of silver—and should Hatala choose to divorce him, she must pay (him) five minas of silver. Witnesses: Masa, Ashurishtikal, Talia, Shupianika.”

The study stated that five minas of silver are worth about $1,500 today.

This closely mirrors the arrangement arrived at between Avram and Sarai in the Bible when it seemed they would be unable to conceive.

This article continues at [Breaking Israel News] 4,000 Year Old Assyrian Marriage Contract Mirrors Biblical Abraham and Hagar

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