The Babylonian invasion of Judah is one of the most momentous events in the history of Israel. It resulted in the destruction of the capital Jerusalem, the exile of the population to a foreign land, the end of independent rule by kings from the house of David and most importantly, the destruction of the glorious temple built by King Solomon. There was a controversy at one time about whether the Bible exaggerated the event. Some today still might still dispute certain details, but the archaeological evidence is clear, there can be no doubt as to whether those events occurred. Continue reading
More Evidence for Hezekiah’s Reforms At Lachish!
(Alternate Title: The Wrong Kind Of Throne!)
About 40 kilometers (25 miles) from Jerusalem is a massive mound that was once the Biblical city of Lachish. Only Jerusalem was more important in all the cities of the ancient Kingdom of Judah. Bible students are grateful for years of careful archeological study of the site as it has enriched our understanding of important Biblical events like the Assyrian invasion of Judah and the later Babylonian invasion.
Recent work shines a light on another important Biblical event: the religious reforms of King Hezekiah. When Hezekiah was enthroned, the worship of Jehovah, centered around the temple in Jerusalem, had been neglected for decades, certainly during Continue reading
The Mystery of “Absalom’s Tomb” – Part 1
At the base of the Mount of Olives, in the valley of Kidron, just outside the city walls of Jerusalem is a striking rock-cut tomb that for centuries has been commonly called, the “Tomb of Absalom”. Passerby would traditionally throw stones at it and fathers of disobedient children would bring them there to show what would happen to rebellious sons.
The attribution of the monument as belonging to Absalom comes from the passage at 2 Samuel 18:18, ” Now Absalom, while he was alive, had taken and set up for himself a pillar in the Valley of the King, for he said: “I have no son to preserve the memory of my name.” So he named the pillar after himself, and it is called Absalom’s Monument to this day.” Continue reading
Did The Canaanites Really Sacrifice Their Children?
Were the Canaanites merciless child killers or gentle nature worshippers?
Warning: Subject matter may disturb
Historical revisionist theories regularly receive more traction among Bible critics than the facts would warrant. For example, consider the subject of polytheism verses monotheism. Most religious history books teach that cultures that were polytheistic (believers in many gods) naturally progressed towards becoming monotheistic (believers in one God). This is seen, even by agnostics as being a necessary step toward becoming a more mature society. Increasingly however, Bible critics challenge that idea. They see the move from polytheism to monotheism as a negative development. According to their version of history, gentle nature worshipping polytheistic societies such as Canaan were supplanted by aggressive monotheistic cultures like the Hebrews which were less tolerant, sexually repressed and war-like. Continue reading
King Hezekiah’s Seal Discovered
Post 19 – You may have seen a headline like this early in December? The Biblical King being referenced is none other than Hezekiah. The clay seal or “bulla” was found near the Temple Mount in what seems to have been an ancient dump site. The clay seal would have secured a string around a rolled Continue reading
The “Tel Dan Stele”
It may not look impressive, but this broken monument at the Israel Museum called the “Tel Dan Stele” (inset) is considered by some to be the most important find in Biblical archeology in decades. Continue reading
King Jehoiachin in Babylon
Post 7 – This week in #weeklybiblereadingarcheology, the exile of King Jehoichin (2 Kings 24 :12-17). At the British Museum is an official Babylonian record (Bottom left) which reads in part, “… he (Nebudchadnezzer) conquered the city and took the king (Jehoiachin) prisoner. He Continue reading