There is a strong case for a narrative that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob's wanderings were driven by climate change and man created land degradation caused partly by overgrazing and poor agricultural practices. Why did Abram feel the calling to leave "Ur of the Chaldees?" Because, the evidence shows that vast tracks of farmland were salted by poor irrigation practices. The land was first abandoned to grain growing, and then turned into full desert by overgrazing. The legend of Gilgamesh recounts the felling of vast forests in what is now Syria and Turkey.
Jacob goes to
Aram, where those forests once were. He prospers on raising goats and
sheep. Why did he leave? Evidence shows repeated cycles of deforestation
and abandonment in that part of the world, including Greece. Mostly caused by overgrazing and/or poor farming practices.
Jacob returns to Israel because the land had recovered from a drought.
He's driven to Egypt, because the drought returned and his kin were not
going to let him back in what is now Syria. And Joseph's 7 good years,
and 7 bad years nearly exactly track El Nino. Again, the Government is
able to enslave people because of repeated cycles of drought; some of
which were exacerbated by overgrazing, poor water conservation, and bad
The Hebrews were Apiru, homeless herdsmen
wandering the borderlands and they were able to transform themselves
into Ibri because the original people of Canaan were decimated by
disease, drought, warfare, and economic collapse. Folks like to preach
the blood thirsty interpretation of their settling of the "promised
land" but when the bible says "God will fight for you" the archeological
record shows plague and starvation depopulating entire nations.
So there is a "green" interpretation to the events of the bible and a
strong case to be made for the intended role of man as a steward of the
environment, intended to treat the world as a Garden of life to be
tended as well as used by him, and tended responsibly. We need more work-sweat and less arrogant blasphemy.