The kingdom of God amazes me with its vastness and diversity. While many are worshiping the Lord in beautiful chapels, Christian studios are recording a new album and elders instruct the spiritually hungry in seminaries. Then there are those across the sea, knee-deep in dirt and grime, searching for long-lost heirlooms of the faithful. Yes, bible archaeology is an important facet of the kingdom that rages on night and day while we sleep. Many of the bible translations, footnotes, online courses and your car bumper stickers in Hebrew are informed by the discoveries made by determined men and women in the field. Even now as I write, someone is dusting off a bit of biblical history, so I`d like to focus this month`s post on some of their recent finds.
– A Babylonian treasure called the “Ark Tablet” was translated last year. The tablet (1900-1700 B.C.) details the Babylonian account of a world-wide flood and an Ark that was built, very similar to Genesis. A new word was decoded in regard to the animals, sana, an ancient term that revealed they went into the Ark “two by two”, as stated in Genesis.
– A 3,800 year old Canaanite fortress was unearthed surrounding the Gihon spring in the City of David section of Jerusalem. This fortress fits the description of the fortress King David conquered to take the city and make it his stronghold, Zion. (2 Samuel 5:6-7) His son, King Solomon, was also crowned at this location. (1 Kings 1:32-34)
– In 1930, Sir Leonard Woolley discovered a 6,500 year old skeleton from Ur, in modern Iraq, the original hometown of the Hebrew/biblical patriarch Abraham. That skeleton was rediscovered after 85 years at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. Field notes showed that the man lived at a time after a mass flood.
– The text of a scroll said to be the oldest biblical text since the Dead Sea Scrolls, was reported to be translated in July. Charred from fire, the scroll was extremely delicate and had to be deciphered using medical imaging equipment and CT scans. It was revealed that it contained the opening eight verses of the biblical book of Leviticus. The scroll is believed to be 1,500 years old.
– Israeli archaeologists discovered a 3,000 year old jar from the time of King David bearing the inscription of a name: Eshbaal Ben Beda, or “Eshbaal son of Beda”. 1 Chronicles 8:33 tells us Eshbaal was the fourth son of King Saul, though some archaeologists believe the inscription refers to a different man. Still, the find shows that the period previously thought of as mere myth or semi-true but with no intelligent writing system, was indeed historical.
Come back here throughout the year for more updates on what the Lord is revealing to those willing to search. Keep on digging!
– Ark Tablet
– Eshbaal Jar