One highly tenuous theory, is by Professor Kamal Salibi's of American University in Beirut. In his 1985 book Bible Came from Arabia,he compares place names in the Bible with names in Arabia today, andconcludes that Palestine had absolutely no histoical Hebrew presence,and rather South West Arabia is what the Bible refers to as Israel!Moreover, Moses and Pharoah were not in Egypt, but rather in Yemen!Egypt in the Bible is not today's Egypt, ...etc.
- Summary of the theory
- References to this theory
- Asir is the promised land
- Summary of Salibi's views (in Arabic)
- Discussion of Salibi's theory
To bring both sides of the argument to the table, I have to mentionthat I received an in April 2005 email from Dr. Bernard Leeman statingthe following:
Ihave just published "Queen of Sheba and Biblical Scholarship," (AWP,New Jersey) which concludes that Kamal Salibi's ypothesis is correct -that ancient Israel and Judah until 722 and 586 BCE were indeed inWestern Arabia. Chaim Rabin's work (1951) (which Salibi didn't consult)on Ancient West Arabian concludes that there is too much Hebrew incertain South West Arabian dialects to be coincidental (in the samearea that Salibi locates the Old Testament) . Also the map referencecs,ancient legal code and other items in the Sheba-Melelik cycle of theEthiopic (Ge'ez) Kebra Nagast support Salibi. Roger Schneider'sdiscovery of Sabaean inscriptions near Mekele in Ethiopia not onlyconfirms the presence there of Hebrews ca 800 BCE but also thenarrative of the Kebra Nagast.There is a lot more evidence, andSalibi should be taken very seriously, even though it means a majorreassessment of faith-based history.
I emailed Dr. Leeman twice that I would be willing to publish a onepage summary of his book on this site. I have not yet heard from him.