This sponsored post is adapted from the ESV Archaeology Research Study Bible– which was created by a team of field-trained archaeologists and
functions 2,000 + study notes, 400 + full-color photos, 200 + maps and diagrams, 15 articles, 4 timelines, and more.Archaeology Provides Context Biblical archaeology is a wide field offering contemporary readers fascinating insights into the daily lives of people mentioned in the Bible. While archaeological findings do not show the truth of Scripture, they do have the potential to enrich our understanding and draw us into the world of the scriptural authors– giving us a look of the ancient world behind the living Word.Here are the ten most significant discoveries in the field of biblical archaeology:1. Rosetta Stone In 1798, Napoleon attacked Egypt. He brought with him a clinical team
of scholars and draftsmen to
survey the monuments of the land. The most crucial find of the exploration was the Rosetta Stone. It showed to be important as the key to understanding ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. The stone dated to the period of Ptolemy V(204– 180 BC )and was inscribed in 3 scripts: demotic, Greek, and hieroglyphic. The Greek, popular to scholars at the time, proved to be a translation of the ancient Egyptian language on the stone. Translation of hieroglyphics marked the start of the research study of ancient Egyptian texts and grammar and supplied the basis for modern Egyptology research studies.2. Dead Sea Scrolls In 1947, shepherds stumbled upon a collapse a rugged, dry area on the western side of the Dead Sea. What they discovered was quickly proclaimed the best archaeological find of the twentieth century. Over the next few
years, other comparable remote caverns in the location were discovered. Exactly what did these caverns include? Over 800 fragmentary files, primarily consisting of Hebrew writings on leather(with a couple of on parchment), consisting of pieces of 190 scriptural scrolls. The majority of these are small, containing no greater than one-tenth of a book; nevertheless, a complete Isaiah scroll has been found. Practically every OT book is present, and there are likewise other works valued by the neighborhood that stay in those caverns. It appears the earliest scrolls date to the mid-third century BC, and many to the very first or second centuries BC. Perhaps the best contribution of this discover is to our understanding of the transmission of the scriptural text. It is motivating to keep in mind that the distinctions are minimal in between the OT texts of the Dead Sea Scrolls and numerous editions of the Hebrew texts produced a thousand years later and used today, including the smallest textual information. The significance of the text itself is not impacted by these distinctions.3. Tel Dan Engraving. In 1993, excavators at Tel Da revealed an inscription with the word BYTDWD on it. They convincingly argued that the word implies”house of David” and dates to the ninth century BC. The inscription had actually been sealed by a later Assyrian destruction layer
strongly dated to 733/722 BC
. An ash layer is an archaeologist’s dream. Anything sealed below it must be dated earlier due to the fact that there is no possibility of invasion by later artifacts. Pottery directly below the destruction level dates to the ninth and 8th centuries BC, and from this period the so-called House of David engraving must have come. Although some scholars have actually tried to rationalize the inscription by asserting BYTDWD is either a place-name or a designation for a temple of a deity, it most likely refers to your home of lineage of David, the 2nd king of the joined monarchy and perhaps the most considerable ruler in the history of Israel. Additional evidence is the likely look of the term BYTDWD on the Mesha Stela/Moabite Stone,
likewise dating to the ninth century BC.4. Ketef Hinnom Scrolls In 1979, Israeli archaeologist Gabriel Barkay was excavating a burial cave at Ketef Hinnom, just southwest of Jerusalem. The tomb was a typical Late Iron Age(c. late 7th century BC)burial structure. The typical Judean burial at this time occurred in a rock-cut cavern. When a person died, he was put on a burial bench in the tomb alongwith individual products such as vases, jewelry, or ornaments. When the body decomposed, the bones of the personwere put in a box underneath the
burial bench. When the group started to excavate the box, they encountered two little silver scrolls. Since the scrolls were metal, the archaeologists had a difficult time unrolling and understanding their text. They started with the larger of the 2 scrolls, which took 3 years to unroll. When unrolled, it measured only 3 inches(7.6 cm)long. When they finished, they noticed the scroll was covered with extremely delicately engraved characters. The first word they were able to analyze was the name”Yahweh.
“After much work, they were able to read the whole scroll. It consisted of the priestly praise from Numbers 6. The smaller sized scroll also contained the praise from Numbers 6. It took so long to unroll and analyze the scrolls that the material was not released up until 1989. These two scrolls are reasonably unidentified, but they can be seen today in the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. They are the earliest known citations of biblical texts in Hebrew. They precede the earliest Dead Sea Scrolls by more than 400 years and are therefore helpful in matters of textual criticism. Lots of authors have actually argued that the priestly benediction was written after the exile, with its earliest date from the 4th century BC. Now we have physical examples of the praise from the late seventh century BC.
In addition, the discovery of two plaques with the very same praise in a buried website underscores the midpoint of the priestly benediction to the faith of the Israelites.5. Moabite Stone In 1868, a missionary in Jerusalem found a stone tablet for sale that appeared to be from ancient times. The sellers broke the tablet into a variety of pieces to offer them one at a time to make more money. A copy of the tablet was made prior to the break(this copy is in the Louvre today). On the tablet is a text written in Moabite dating to the ninth century BC. It was possibly a success stone put up by King Mesha to honor his military accomplishments. The text starts,”I
am Mesha child of Chemosh, king of Moab. “Prominent in the text is the king’s variation of a war combated with Israel in 850 BC, in which Moab revolted versus King Jehoram of the northern kingdom of Israel right after the death of Ahab. Of specific interest is that the Bible records the very same incident in
2 Kings 3. The 2 accounts vary in viewpoint. Mesha emphasizes his triumphes over Israel in recording cities under Israelite control. The biblical author, to the contrary, highlights Israel’s effective counterattacks against the Moabites.6. Lachish Letters In the 1930s, J. L. Starkey excavated the website of Lachish. He discovered a layer of debris heavily ruined and burned with fire at the hands of the Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar in 589/588 BC. Starkey discovered 18 ostraca in the burnt particles of a guardroom between the inner and external gates of the city. An ostracon is an inscription written in ink on pottery sherds. Many of the ostraca were correspondence, although a couple of were lists of names. The contents of the ostraca were fragmentary,and only a third of them are
sufficiently preserved to be intelligible. The date of the ostraca is typically instantly previous to the destruction of Lachish by the Babylonians.A number of the letters are composed by a male named Hoshaiah to a military commander called Yaosh. The typical analysis is that Hoshaiah was the leader of a fortress outside Lachish composing to Yaosh, the leader of Lachish. Other analysts believe Hoshaiah was the military chief of Lachish and Yaosh a high official in Jerusalem. One of the letters closes with the statement, “Let [my lord] understand that we are watching for the signals of Lachish, according to all the indicators which my lord have actually given, for we can not see Azekah.
” Hoshaiah was describing signify fires from one Judean city to another, and the context appears to be the Babylonian attack soon to come.7. Epic of Gilgamesh In 1872, George Smith revealed he had discovered an Assyrian account of a flood among tablets kept in the British Museum from excavations of mid-seventh-century-BC Nineveh. Called the Legendary of Gilgamesh, the story makes up 12 tablets, with one tablet containing a tale of an excellent deluge. The hero of the flood, a man called Utnapishtim, relates an episode to Gilgamesh. He describes how the god Ea alerted him about an approaching judgment and told him to build a boat to save his life from the watery assault. As the tale unfolds, the epic in some aspects is almost identical to the biblical narrative of Noah in Genesis 6– 9. This discovery created quite a stir among scriptural scholars of the 19th century, as well as today scholars continue to puzzle over and debate the apparent parallels between the 2.8. Hezekiah’s Tunnel The most reputable water source for the city of Jerusalem throughout the Israelite settlement was
the Gihon Spring. However, its location outside the city walls was problematic. Throughout an attack or siege, the occupants were cut off from their vital water source. In 1867, explorer Charles Warren discovered a vertical shaft cut through bedrock allowing individuals of Jerusalem to reach the waters of the Gihon Spring from behind the city walls. This shaft was probably built originally by the Jebusites and might be how David’s soldiers captured the city from them (2 Sam. 5:6 -8). A brand-new water supply utilizing part of
the earlier one was constructed by
Hezekiah near completion of the 8th century BC due to an Assyrian military danger. Hezekiah’s tunnel sloped gently far from the Gihon Spring to permit water to stream from it to the Pool of Siloam inside the city walls. Hezekiah’s tunnel was cut by two groups digging towards each other from opposite ends. It was not sculpted in a straight line however was serpentine due to regular shifts in surface. The 2 groups made changes as they approached each other and heard the choices of the other team. An engraving 20 feet( 6 m)from the Siloam Pool has been discovered that explains the conference of the 2 cutting groups.9. Crucified Man at Givat Hamivtar We are aware of Roman methods of crucifixion of the first century ADVERTISEMENT– not just from written records but also from the remains of a crucified guy discovered at Givat Hamivtar, a website simply outside Jerusalem. The cross consisted of two parts: the upright bar,
called the stipes crucis, and the horizontal bar, called the patibulum. The crucified guy was positioned with his back over the stipes crucis, and his hands were nailed to the patibulum. Inning accordance with archaeologists, the nails should have been driven through the wrist since the palms might not have supported the man’s weight. He was attached to the cross likewise by his feet, in a manner different from what is commonly believed. The Roman executioner made a crude, rectangle-shaped frame of wood where the heels of the victim were pushed. Then an iron nail was driven through the ideal part of the frame, through the man’s calcanei– the largest tarsal bones in the foot– and after that through the left part of the frame. The totally free end of the nail was then bent by hammer blows. This discover provides archaeologists even more insight into Roman crucifixions.10. Ugaritic Texts A great majority of Canaanite texts come from the site of Ugarit(modern-day Ras Shamra), on the northern coast of Syria along the Mediterranean Sea. Ugarit was a prominent Canaanite city-state of the second millennium BC. Significant excavations haveoccurred at the site considering that1929. An essential find at Ugarit are numerous
texts found in the palace and temple locations. More than 1,500 of those tablets have actually been published. Ugarit reached its height in the fifteenth to thirteenth centuries BC, the period where written literature at the site flourished.The city satisfied its last fate at the hands of Mediterranean opponents, who damaged the site around 1200 BC. The importance of the Ugaritic texts is the product they offer worrying Canaanite religion. Their mythic texts help us understand the religious context of the OT, consisting of many parallels in between Canaanite and Israelite spiritual practices. In addition, the languages of Ugaritic and Hebrew are rather similar, and therefore Ugaritic offers insight into the advancement and grammar of Hebrew. ESV Archaeology Research Study Bible, edited by Dr. John Currid and Dr. David Chapman and download an excerpt today.