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Bible Q

How many days or years was it from when Israel left Egypt until the law was written?

Exodus gives us some time markers in the description of the people of Israel in the wilderness.

In the third month after the Israelites went out from the land of Egypt, on the very day, they came to the Desert of Sinai. After they journeyed from Rephidim, they came to the Desert of Sinai, and they camped in the desert; Israel camped there in front of the mountain. (Exodus 19:1-2 NET)

Most commentators think this means the first day of the third month after leaving Egypt. They left Egypt on the 14th day of the first month (Exodus 12:6), so there were 45 days between leaving Egypt and arriving at Mt Sinai.

Then Moses proceeded to go up and down the mountain several times, including two separate periods of 40 days each (Exodus 24:18; 34:28). We are not given enough information to be exact, but it seems like there were about 5-7 months from the time of leaving Egypt until Moses finally returned with the law including the two tablets containing the 10 commandments.

Later we read

In the first month in the second year, on the first day of the month, the tabernacle was erected. (Exodus 40:17)

Thus, it took them another few months to construct the tabernacle.

Then, in Numbers 10:11 we are told they left Sinai, just less than one year after arriving:

On the twentieth day of the second month, in the second year, the cloud was taken up from the tabernacle of the testimony.
So the Israelites set out on their journeys from the wilderness of Sinai; and the cloud settled in the wilderness of Paran.

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