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
(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
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 has been commonly called for centuries, the “Tomb of Absalom”. Passerby would traditionally throw stones at it and fathers of disobedient children would bring them there to show what happened to rebellious sons.
The attribution of the monument as the tomb of 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
Were the Canaanites merciless child killers or gentle nature worshipers?
Warning: Subject matter may disturb
Historical revisionist theories regularly receive more traction among Bible critics than the facts would warrant. For example, consider the case 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 thing. According to their revisionist version of history, gentle nature worshiping 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
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
Post 6 – This week in #weeklybiblereadingarcheology, Hezekiah’s tunnel under the City of David (Jerusalem), from 2 Kings 20:20. This tunnel redirected the Gihon spring, the only source of fresh water for the city. Formerly, the spring was reached outside the main walls of the city. When Continue reading