Where Did the Egyptian Gold Come From?

Last week’s post on the dangers of plundering Egyptian gold resulted in a question being posed to me: namely, where did the Egyptians get the gold they gave the Israelites?

The answer ends up in “someone dug it out of the ground.” Either they got it out of their own gold mines, or they traded for it from other places that got it out of their own gold mines.

However, how did it get in the ground to begin with?

Well, I’m no geologist, astrophysicist, or chemist, but I’ve picked up enough to give you a general idea of the currently prevailing scientific consensus. (Ward, if I goof this up, please tell me in the blog comments).

Once upon a time, there was a thing that contained all matter. It exploded and became the universe. By means of various attractive forces and the vagaries of explosions, clusters of hydrogen atoms began to form. These eventually became nebulae, which eventually became giant natural fusion reactors, also known less awesomely as “stars.” When the stars died and went supernova, they spewed forth the fused hydrogen atoms, as well as unfused hydrogen. These would eventually hit other stars, space being a frictionless vacuum, and begin the process all over again. This process went on for a very long time, and involved more explosions than all the Expendables and Transformers movies combined.

After a few billion years of this, eventually there were enough of the fused hydrogen atoms and fusions of the resultant fusions and so on and so forth, that when the nebulae resulting from supernovas formed stars, there were enough leftover heavier bits to form large rocky things called planets and asteroids. We call those heavier bits iron, silicon, nickel, and gold, to name a few. Many of the pieces of those heavier elements are lone atoms or molecules, which is why a very small portion of your body is gold. Very small portion–don’t try mining yourself for it. However, occasionally, those elements form large deposits (relatively speaking) that, due to the vagaries of asteroid strikes, geological blips like volcanic eruptions, and just randomness, end up alllllll over the place, although generally most accessibly in mountains, which tend to act as both artistic inspiration and heavy metal access points for humanity.

And that’s where the Egyptians got their gold.

Or, let me put it more simply, and acknowledge the actual prime mover behind the whole thing. Because what I just said was the equivalent of discussing how a man makes a sword by going over the hammer strokes, the molecular composition of the metal, and the fuel for the fire. It might be fascinating,  but where is the agent? Where is the prime mover?

So, where did the Egyptians get their gold? They got it from God, who, according to the plan laid down before any but He had even existed, spoke the universe into existence, and set the event chains into motion, nudging them whenever His plan called for for such. Who made sure that there was gold placed where human beings could get to it. Who oversaw the building of civilization, and saw to it that the Egyptians had gold to give to the Israelites on their way out of Egypt, so that His glory might be proclaimed throughout the earth.

Now, what does this have to do with the previous post? Well, think of it this way. Ideas do not simply spring forth–they are built from other things. Ideas are, to carry the metaphor forward, the Egyptian ornaments, the golden calf, and the Tabernacle fixtures. The shiny yellow metal stuff itself? That’s what makes the ideas–thoughts, experiences, beliefs, and logic, and your brain and the weird electrochemical reactions within it, all placed and granted by God according to His will.

Just please remember, as I will strive to, that ideas can be idols or Tabernacles. Let us choose wisely.

‘Til next time,

Lowell Van Ness


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