Israel history goes on and on... Event after event... Reference after reference... The biblical record of "Israel history
" never disappointed me...
The defeats of Samaria and Ashdod to Sargon II, king of Assyria, as recorded on his palace walls. 1
The military campaign of the Assyrian king Sennacherib against Judah, as recorded on the Taylor Prism. 2
The siege of Lachish by Sennacherib, as recorded on the Lachish Reliefs. 3
The destruction of Nineveh as predicted by the prophets Nahum and Zephaniah, as recorded on the Tablet of Nabopolasar.4
The defeat of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, as recorded in the Babylonian Chronicles. 5
The Babylonian captivity of Jehoiachin, king of Judah, as recorded in the Babylonian Ration Records. 6
The defeat of Babylon by the Medes and Persians, as recorded on the Cyrus Cylinder. 7
The freeing of the Jewish captives from Babylon by Cyrus the Great, as recorded on the Cyrus Cylinder. 8
The palace at Jericho where Eglon, king of Moab, was assassinated by Ehud. The east gate of Shechem where Gaal and Zebul watched the forces of Abimelech approach the city. The Temple of Baal in Shechem, where the citizens of Shechem took refuge when Abimelech attacked the city. The pool of Gibeon where the forces of David and Ishbosheth fought during the struggle for the kingship of Israel. The royal palace at Samaria where the kings of Israel lived. The Pool of Samaria where King Ahab's chariot was washed after his death. The water tunnel beneath Jerusalem dug by King Hezekiah to provide water during the Assyrian siege. The royal palace in Babylon where King Belshazzar held the feast and Daniel interpreted the handwriting on the wall. The royal palace, gate and square at Susa where the events of Esther, the queen to the Persian king Xerxes, and Mordecai, her cousin, took place. 9
Wow! Only a century and a half ago, European academics in the "Age of Enlightenment" declared that the Bible (especially the Old Testament) was fictional history. Their primary rationale was that empires such as the Hittites, and kings such as David, didn't really exist. Well, now we have dramatic "archaeological support
" for their existence! Moreover, in recent years, the archaeological finds have increased dramatically! Therefore, if the rationale for rejecting Old Testament scripture was lack of corroborating historical and archaeological evidence, shouldn't the same rationale exist for validating the Old Testament record now that we're finding such evidence?
Although the general strife in the Middle East has slowed archaeological endeavors somewhat, the Bible's reliability as a historical document continues to be confirmed by the field of archaeology every day. Although absence of archaeological evidence does not necessarily mean absence of the people, place or event, it may be stated emphatically that no archaeological discovery has ever refuted a Biblical reference.
Dr. Nelson Glueck, probably the greatest modern authority on Israeli archeology, has said:
No archeological discovery has ever controverted a single biblical reference. Scores of archeological findings have been made which confirm in clear outline or exact detail historical statements in the Bible. And, by the same token, proper evaluation of Biblical descriptions has often led to amazing discoveries.10
For me, the study of Israel's history and archaeology was really becoming an unexpected and exciting journey...
Travel On Now!
1 Hoerth, Archaeology and the Old Testament, 342-343. See 2 Kings 17:3-6, 24; 18:9-11; and Isaiah 20:1.
2 Price, The Stones Cry Out, 272. See 2 Kings 18:13-16.
3 Ibid., 79-81. Hoerth, Archaeology and the Old Testament, 351. See 2 Kings 18:14, 17.
4 Bryant Wood, Associates for Biblical Research, 2001, http://www.christiananswers.net/q-abr/abr-a009.html. See Nahum 3:7 and Zephaniah 2:13-15.
5 Price, The Stones Cry Out, 232-233. See 2 Kings 24:10-14.
6 Wood, Associates for Biblical Research, http://www.christiananswers.net/q-abr/abr-a009.html. See 2 Kings 24:15-16.
7 Price, The Stones Cry Out, 250-252. See Daniel 5:30-31.
8 Ibid. See Ezra 1:1-4; 6:3-4.
9 Bryant Wood, Associates for Biblical Research, 1995-2001, http://christiananswers.net/q-abr/abr-a005.html; http://christiananswers.net/q-abr/jericho.html. Scripture citations, in order, Judges 3:15-30; Judges 9:34-38; Judges 9:4, 46-49; 2 Samuel 2:12-32; 1 Kings 20:43; 21:1, 2; 22:39; 2 Kings 1:2; 15:25; 1 Kings 22:29-38; 2 Kings 20:20; 2 Chronicles 32:30; Daniel 5; and the Book of Esther.
10 Nelson Glueck, Rivers in the Desert, Farrar, Strous and Cudahy, 1959, 136.