Exodus says Moses approaches Yam Suph, lifts his staff over his head and the water is held back by two walls, left and right, or perhaps figure of
speech for a wall that can be turned right and left; and the river crossing at Yam Suph emerges. The Hebrew word Yam refers to a body of water, but
the word is of Chaldean origin and translates 'sea', or a missing English word 'a *water' with general reference to a considerable body of water.
As a proper noun however, Yam is the name of one of the sons of El and in some stories, he is the enemy of Ba'al and several other deities up through
history. Yam is a seven-headed dragon, and rules over seas and rivers, and as a god of order in chaos and chaos in order, he also is the god of winter
and hardship. Yam may be the very same as the Sumerian dragon Tiamat, often seen with ten horns or seven heads or similar, more certain is that he is
called Leviathan and Rahab in Semitic mythos and pantheons. The different destinies of Yam include being killed by Ba'al. Being slaughtered by Yahveh
and be closed behind doors, and be dried up, he is: *drum roll* Egypt and the Nile. Water is the source of life, so the imagery is vivid, a result of
pantheism where water is given different personalities from it's different states and a remnant from a time where water was sacred, scarce and scary,
and how those who made themselves able to control water, or in this case, the Nile, were deified and were worshipped as gods.
Suph basically has two main definitions, reed or end (bottom, last, etc). Suph is also the name of a town in Deuteronomy 1:1 [ESV] where it is
mentioned together with six other places:
"These are the words that Moses spoke to all Israel beyond the Jordan in the wilderness, in the Arabah opposite Suph, between Paran and
Tophel, Laban, Hazeroth, and Dizahab."
That'd be the town or place of Suph, beyond Jordan, beyond the wilderness, beyond Arabia, beyond the other four places mentioned. Though it shows the
wrong location, see source here
Moses wasn't stupid. And the sensible would be to simply go East toward Sinai from Goshen where they lived, by the "Ends of the River" in Lower Egypt,
which is an alternate translation of Yam Suph, placing Suph somewhere near the Nile Delta towards the Sinai peninsula near where Suph was located,
where Moses, being an Egyptian prince demonstrated his royal power to open and close the floodgates of the Nile during flood season and use the lake
crossing as he pleased and further allow Israel to use the strategic crossing point at Yam Suph or the *water of Suph, lit. Sea of Suph, which name
alludes to 'Aaru
' or the 'Field of Reeds', the ancient Egyptian name for Paradise, and finally to open
the gates again destroying the army representing the Pharaoh in the process.
Suph also means Reed, and many read Yam Suph as being the Red Sea based on a translation or rather an interpretation made in the LXX Septuagint where
"The Sea of Suph" becomes the 'red sea' or ἐρυθρά θάλασσα in Greek, an allusion to all the blood of the soldiers who were crushed to
smitherines against the bedrock of Yam Suph as Exodus shows Moses raising his staff a second time and the walls give in and the raging flood of water
collapse upon the Egyptian army division, crushing them, as God crushed Rahab, according to Psalms.
During one of the seven stages in the flood cycle of the Nile, due to the six natural cataracts, the Nile also turned red at a given, predictable
date, so the LXX 'red sea' part might very well be a subtle date-stamp (one of many), for there is nothing in the Greek LXX to indicate the LXX
wording is a proper name, really, and the modern English name The Red Sea, is just that, a modern English idiom, constructed several millennia after
Moses and the crossing of Yam Suph in Exodus is supposed to have happened.
Moses crossed Yam Suph during Passover, and adjusting for precession of the equinoxes, Passover in the 15th century BC happened to be at the same time
as the annual flooding of the Nile, when the Nile turned into a giant moving sea covering the whole Nile Valley, rising with least 45 feet or about 15
meters, that's like a six storey building, based on markings at several ancient Nilometers along the Nile. Connected to this fluctuating body of
water, were intricate systems of canals reaching distant parts of areas now all dried up and deserted, save the sand dunes and a few nomads, but we
know from different sources that back then All of Egypt was green and lush because of this giant net of canals now buried under the sand of
edit on 17-7-2014 by Utnapisjtim because: I1