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Exciting Biblical Discovery just North of Jerusalem

An intriguing excavation site has been discovered where many questions are being answered about the Bible and ancient times. There is some debate about the dating of et-Tel and its connection with the Exodus.

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Jerusalem

This city Maqatir has promising signs suggesting that it was around all the way back to the Exodus. There is also a possible connection with Abraham and Jacob.
“Bryant Wood of Associates for Biblical Research began the excavation to search for evidence to support his belief that Maqatir, and not the nearby site of et-Tell, was the location of Ai, the city conquered by Joshua after the destruction of Jericho.” – Click here to read about it.

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Has King David’s Palace been found?

Khirbet Qeiyafa (Elah Fortress) is where there was a discovery of an early city looking out over the Elah Valley. The remains of the fortifications had been found in 2007 by the Israeli city in Beit Shemesh (20 miles out of Jerusalem). The fortress spreads out over almost 6 acres and is bordered by a 2300 ft wall.  The wall was made from stones that weighed around 8 tons each. Many archeologists have claimed that it might be the biblical city of Sha’arayim or Neta’im and possibly have the remains of King David’s palace. There are those who are doubtful and advocate the possibility it could have been a Judahite or Canaanite castle.

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Khirbet Qeiyafa

Has Been Found

  • The Elah Valley in the Judean Hills is located from the Bible as the place where David and Goliath fought their historic standoff.
  • This city is identified as the city Sha’arayim from the Bible where David had his palace.
  • It has been dated back to around his time in the 10th century BC.
  • Nadav Na’aman has said that King David’s Palace was at the height of the city’s northeastern hill, barely over the Stepped Stone Structure that gave a way up to the peak in the East. The place, time and vastness of Khirbet Oeiyafa, he has said matched the Biblical Palace of King David.
  • Following David’s victory over the Jebusites (‘stronghold of Zion,’) he is read to have given it the new name of the City of David. Then strengthened it ‘from Millo inward’ (2 Samuel 5:7-9). The Hebrew word “millo” could be taken from the verb ml (fill up). Nadav believes the ‘Stepped Stone Structure’ that follows the incline from the ‘Large Stone Structure’ which is built from filling it with stones and dirt could be the ‘millo’ spoken of from Samuel in the Bible.
  • 2 ‘bullae’ or ‘seal impressions’ of Judahite executives were discovered in the ruins by the Large Stone Structure. One has Gedaliah son of Pashhur engraved on it, the other Jehucal son of Shelemiah, son of Shobai. The men were spoken of as officials for King Zedekiah (Jeremiah 37:3, 38:1). This is interpreted to mean that this is where the 2 men managed and that the area was still populated during the 6th Century BC.

Has Not Been Found

  • Yossi Garfinkel claims it was a Judahite City because of its proximity to Jerusalem and that it is located in an area that was part of Judah.
  • Finkelstein strongly proclaims that it has the same characteristics and pottery types that are found in close by Canaanite finds in Bet Shemesh.
  • The basis of this claim as King David’s Castle come from the Bible; Finkelstein doubts that the writer Joshua 15 a figure who resided in the 7th Century BC had enough knowledge of the ancient city which had existed 3 centuries before his birth.
  • Many argue that proclaimed discoveries of King David’s castle or any artifact concerning him are solely due to the desire for popularity and fame.
  • Yehuda Dagan of the Israel Antiquities Authority advocates it as the early Philistine withdraw course following their loss at the Valley of Elah (1 Samuel 17:52). Thus, it is more likely to be what is left of Khirbet esh-Shari’a and that it should be labeled as Adithaim from the Bible.
References:
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Did a Skin Cream Kill Ancient Egyptian Queen?

German scientists studying the contents of an ancient bottle may have found evidence of what killed Queen Hatshepsut, one of the most powerful women to ever rule over ancient Egypt.

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A stone statue of Hatshepsut

* When the scientists examined the contents of a 3,500-year-old bottle inscribed with the pharaoh’s name, they found traces of an ancient skincare ointment. Among the ingredients were creosote and asphalt, commonly found in creams used to treat chronic skin disease but known today to be cancer causing.  read more

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Go One on One With Bible Archaeologists

During a live, interactive “Office Hours” webcast Thursday, Sept. 1, at noon Eastern Time on the Duke Ustream channel, Carol and Eric Meyers will answer your questions about their archeological work, Jewish history and controversies surrounding artifacts linked to biblical history.

To ask the Meyerses a question — in advance or during the show — send an email to live@duke.edu, tweet with the tag #dukelive or post to the Duke University Facebook page.  Learn more 

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Tomb of Apostle Phillip Found in Hierapolis

From FoxNews July 27, 2011, A tomb believed to be that of St. Phillip the Apostle was unearthed during excavations in the ancient Turkish city of Hierapolis.

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St. Philip

Italian professor Francesco D’Andria said archeologists found the tomb of the biblical figure — one of the 12 original disciples of Jesus — while working on the ruins of a newly-unearthed church, Turkish news agency Anadolu reported Wednesday. “We have been looking for Saint Philip’s tomb for years,” d’Andria told the agency. “We finally found it in the ruins of a church that we excavated a month ago.” The structure of the tomb and the writings on the wall proved it belonged to St. Philip, he added.

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