The mention of the dromedary in Exodus 9:3 also suggests a later date of composition – the widespread domestication of the camel as a herd animal is thought not to have taken place before the late 2nd millennium, after the Israelites had already emerged in Canaan, The chronology of the Exodus story likewise underlines its essentially religious rather than historical nature. The number seven was sacred to Yahweh in Judaism, and so the Israelites arrive at the Sinai Peninsula, where they will meet Yahweh, at the beginning of the seventh week after their departure from Egypt, while the erection of the Tabernacle, Yahweh's dwelling-place among his people, occurs in the year 2666 after Yahweh creates the world, two-thirds of the way through a four thousand year era which culminates in or around the re-dedication of the Second Temple in 164 BCE. Israel's Exodus in Transdisciplinary Perspective: Text, Archaeology, Culture, and Geoscience Geraty, L. Moses leads them out of Egypt and through the wilderness to Mount Sinai, where Yahweh reveals himself and offers them a Covenant: they are to keep his torah (i.e.
Hoffmeier, continue to discuss the historicity, or at least plausibility, of the story, arguing that the Egyptian records have been lost or suppressed or that the fleeing Israelites left no archaeological trace or that the large numbers are mistranslated, the majority have abandoned the investigation as "a fruitless pursuit".
According to Exodus –38, the Israelites numbered "about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides women and children", plus many non-Israelites and livestock.
The Book of Numbers tells how the Israelites, led now by their god Yahweh, journey on from Sinai towards Canaan, but when their spies report that the land is filled with giants they refuse to go on and Yahweh condemns them to remain in the desert until the generation that left Egypt passes away.
The Hebrew name for this festival, Pesach, refers to God's instruction to the Israelites to prepare unleavened bread as they would be leaving Egypt in haste, and to mark their doors with the blood of slaughtered sheep so that the "Angel of Death" or "the destroyer" tasked with killing the first-born of Egypt would "pass over" them.
Almost the sole marker distinguishing the "Israelite" villages from Canaanite sites is an absence of pig bones, although whether even this is an ethnic marker or is due to other factors remains a matter of dispute.