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Jews Struggle For Liberty 167 to 130 BC

Starting in the 7th century B.C. the Jewish people had been placed under various foreign powers. Their subservient state would last for nearly 500 years up until the time of the Maccabee Revolt. This revolt started around 167 B.C. when a Greek Seleucid king named Antiochus III decided to disregard the Jews way of life and try to Hellenize its culture and religion.

It appears on the Bible Timeline during the second century BC. Antiochus IV was a Seleucid ruler who gained the throne in 175 BC. Shortly after he became the new king of the Seleucid Empire, he began to pass a series of anti-Jewish laws through a Jewish high priest and the governor named Jason, who bribed the king to gain this position.

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Antiochos III coin

Jason had a brother named Onias III who was going to remain the high priest of Judah. Jewish people believe that the high priest was selected directly from God and not from any Earthly powers. So when Jason became the high priest, this naturally caused the people of Judah to become outraged with the Seleucid Dynasty.

After Jason took over his duties as high priest and governor he had his brother Osias III murdered. Now that Jason was the high priest and governor, Antiochus III decided to use him in his quest to convert Judah into a Hellenized territory. He wanted to make the city of Jerusalem the capital of this newly formed Greek state.

He then began to initiate a series of changes that attacked the Jews way of life and their religion. Jason had Hellenized Solomon’s Temple so the people would now have to worship Greek gods, and they would have to adhere to Greek culture. There was a priest who worked at Solomon’s Temple during these events, and his named was Matthias. The Jewish priests were being replaced by Hellenistic Jewish priest and the new clergy was leading the people of Judah into idolatry.

They were trying to get the people to worship the Greek gods by offering sacrifices to them. One day a Greek official told Matthias to make a sacrifice to one of the Greek gods in the temple, but Matthias had enough of this desecration, and he killed him. Once this happened it set off a chain of events that would start a Jewish revolt. Matthias had 5 sons and they all helped their father to start a revolt against the King Antiochus III. Matthias had to flee to the wilderness (open desert) to avoid arrest and when he did he called upon the people to follow him.

The people responded, and he had a small army. The Jewish rebels realized that they couldn’t take on the Greek army in open battle so they decided to use a small force that would fight with guerilla tactics. The Maccabeus army defeated various Seleucid forces that included Assyrians, Parthian, and the Samarians. Judas Maccabeus had won a huge victory against the Seleucid army and forced them to retreat from Judah at the Battle of Emmaus. The Seleucid army tried once again to defeat Judah, but they were routed each time that they came back to the area.

The Jews finally forced the Seleucids to leave permanently Judah alone in 164 B.C. Now that Judah had gained its independence from foreign rulers they cleansed their temple of the idols, and they made Judas their leader. Originally the Maccabees were known as the Hasmoneans, and they earned the name Maccabees because of their style of fighting. They attacked their enemies with powerful battle tactics that beat their enemies with lightning fast maneuvers and powerful force.

The Maccabees also stopped helped a lot of the Jewish persecution that was happening at the time in foreign lands. Judas was a high leader in Judah until 160 B.C. when he died in battle against the Assyrians. By 130 B.C., the Jews had regained their independence, and they established the Hasmonean Dynasty that was the first group of Jewish kings to rule their own land since the exile had taken place. The Hasmonean rulers controlled Judea with Simon Maccabeus being the first king. These Jewish people held their independence for about 103 before they were brought under Roman power. The Jewish holiday known as Hannukah is celebrated by the people in memory of this event.

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Tarquinius the Proud

King Lucius Tarquinius Superbus murdered his father at the request of his wife, Tullia. His reign began in 535 B.C that is where he appears on the Bible Timeline with World History. King Superbus was a man who possessed an angry disposition and spirit, and he was also filled with insolence and arrogance. This is one of the major reasons why he was dubbed Tarquinius the Proud.

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Tarquinius

King Superbus was the son of Rome’s sixth King Servius Tullius and he also had a brother named Aruns. King Servius Tullius had two daughters that he named Tullia. The younger of the two daughters was a mean spirited female who despised Aruns her marriage to Aruns. He wasn’t considered strong enough for her, so she was drawn to Superbus, who was a lot more ruthless. Superbus was married to Tullia’s older sister who was also a good hearted woman. Superbus didn’t like her and desired the younger Tullia and both of them schemed to kill their siblings and then to kill their father the king.

Once Tarquinius took the throne, he quickly eliminated any senators who sympathized with his father. After he slaughtered the Senators, he then dismissed the remaining Senate members and made decisions without them. He purposely stripped them of their power so he could do whatever he pleased. He then trumped up false charges so he could kill off a Latin political leader who had enough foresight to see that King Superbus wasn’t going to be a good ruler.

Tarquinius the Proud then married off his daughter to secure foreign power over the Latin tribes. He schemed and began to subdue more of the surrounding tribes outside of Rome including the people of Sabine. He continued Rome’s peace treaty with the Etruscans, and he also established Roman colonies. He erected the Temple of Jupiter on Capitoline Hill. Throughout the rest of his reign, he connived and tricked many people while forcing others to do his will.

King Superbus also had a son named Sextus Tarquinius who raped an incredibly beautiful woman named Lucretia from the land of Collatia. King Superbus wanted to take this territory and had sent his son Sextus to lead the expedition. Sextus had snuck into Lucretia’s chambers and forced himself on her. Lucretia committed suicide, and her father was outraged. Other leading members of Roman society and the Collatia also joined her father in rebelling against the king. Tarquinius the Proud and his family were eventually exiled from Rome. After his demise, this led to the forming of the Republic of Rome which was now led by the consuls Brutus and Collantinus.

Tarquinius, the Proud’s reign, was significant because it marked the beginning of a new Roman era. The people of Rome realized that a sole king would not be needed anymore to rule the land. When his reign was over the face of Rome was changing into a forceful, dominant empire that would eventually rise and dominate most of the known world at the time. Tarquinius tried to regain power through military might and negotiations, but it was no use the people never allowed him back on the throne. He eventually died in exile in 496 B.C., and he ruled Rome for 26 years from 535 B.C. to 509 B.C.

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Tullus Hostilius of Rome

Tullus Hostilius was a Sabine, who became ruler of Rome. His grandfather Hostus Hostilius, who fought against the Sabine’s for Rome’s first king, Romulus. The Roman’s had taken the Sabine women from their husbands and fathers, and this caused a war between the two tribes. The war ended when the women told the men that they preferred the Roman’s over the Sabines.

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Tulius-Hostilius

Rome then tried to live in peace with the men of Sabine by allowing them to participate in Roman society. Tillus Hostilius spent most of his time in warfare. He appears on the Biblical Timeline beginning around 673 BC. King Tullus began his reign in 673 B.C.

While he was in power, he attacked the ancient Roman city of Alba Longa which was home to the first Etruscan king before Rome was founded. Tullus defeated this city and welcomed the people of Alba Longa into Rome. After he had tried to treat the Albans with peace, their leader betrayed him, and he had him killed. He continued to make war against many other Italian tribes such as the Fidenae, Veientines, and the Sabines.

Tullus Hostilius didn’t pay too much attention to his civic or religious responsibilities. War was his primary focus. He mainly fought against other tribes and began to establish Rome as a powerful force to be reckoned with. Through his efforts, he absorbed many tribes around Rome and forced some of them to pay tribute. He used the defeated nobles and people of Alba Longa to increase and strengthen his military forces. His cavalry units were made up of Alban horsemen, and Alban soldiers filled the ranks of his army.

Tullus Hostilius might have been a great warrior-king, but he wasn’t a good administrator. Even though this was the case, he still placed some of the defeated nobles from Alba Longa as members of the Senate. He also built them their own council hall called Curia Hostilia. Also, it was King Tullus’ duty to lead the empire in religious service but he didn’t care for the ceremony. Eventually, he had to give in to this particular requirement when pestilence had struck Rome and affected his royal house. He then decided to honor the gods by performing his priestly duty, but he didn’t perform the ceremony in the right way. As a result, he was struck by lightening and killed.

Most of what is known about Tullus Hostilius comes from a Roman historian named Titus Livius Patavinus. He was also known as Livy. Most of the events that he ascribes to Tullus’ reign were considered true by many historians. But they also state that some parts of Livy’s explanation of King Tullus’ reign were fictional or more of a myth. Scholars do not doubt that King Hostilius expanded the boundaries of Rome, but they are not quite sure he died from lightning strikes from some angry god. Once again fact and fiction might have been mixed over the years when Livy wrote about King Tullus. Livy was born 600 years after Tullus Hostilius so some of his work could have been interwoven with fictional accounts of this ancient Roman king.

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Nebuchadnezzar of Chaldea

Nebuchadnezzar was the popular king of Babylon who ruled the throne during the time of the Judean exile. He is known to westerners as Nebuchadnezzar and Nebuchadnezzar were how his name was pronounced in ancient times. Chaldaic was a dialect of Aramaic, and it used to be the official language of the Middle East and Mesopotamian region once the Babylonians gained power over the Assyrians. Nebuchadnezzar’s official name was pronounced and written in this ancient language. His name means “Nabu defend my son” or ” a favorite of Nabu”. The deity Nabu was the son of the Babylonian chief god Marduk and Nebuchadnezzar was named after this deity from his father King Nebopolasser, who considered himself to be favored by Marduk.

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Nebuchadnezzar took the throne of Babylon in 605 B.C. when his father passed away from natural causes. This is when he appears on the Biblical Timeline Chart. Before he became king, he was a coregent with Nabopolassar, and he was out fighting many battles to expand the Babylonian empire. Nebuchadnezzar’s father defeated the Assyrians and from this event the Babylonians began to dominate various cultures all throughout the Middle East and the Mesopotamian region.

The Bible states that before Nebuchadnezzar began his conquest the Lord communicated to him that he was supposed to dominate the land of Judah. God had revealed himself to Nebuchadnezzar, and this probably happened through the dreams he had and through the reputation of the Hebrew people. Nebuchadnezzar’s father made it a point to search out ancient records so that he could worship the pagan deities from the past. This too probably helped to inspire Nebuchadnezzar to conquer Judah since the Assyrians had revelations from God that they were given this task for the Israelites they defeated. It should also be kept in mind that many of the Israelites were living in Assyria after the Babylonians took it over, and they too revealed God to the Babylonian rulers.

Nebuchadnezzar had become very powerful and successful with his conquests, and the defeat of Judah was one of his most important victories. A few years after he conquered Judah he had a particular group of young Hebrew boys to become educated within his court. Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were the young men who would really reveal God to him by their presence.

Nebuchadnezar,_Chaldaic_King
Daniel interpreting Nebuchadnezzar’s dream

Nebuchadnezzar was prone to have strange dreams that troubled him deeply, and he would usually try to have the Chaldean wise men interpret these dreams. The Chaldean wise men couldn’t interpret his dreams but with God’s help Daniel was able to tell Nebuchadnezzar about his dreams.

King Nebuchadnezzar went insane during a seven-year period during his rule. Nebuchadnezzar honestly believed that he handled being so successful during his reign and would not acknowledge that God was behind his achievements. So God revealed to Nebuchadnezzar that he would go insane and believed that he was a wild animal. Daniel had told the Babylonian king that this would happen and eventually came to pass. After this period was over God allowed Nebuchadnezzar regain his sanity. He then was humble enough to acknowledge that the Lord of the Hebrews was the only true and living God.

Nebuchadnezzar married a Mede princess named Amytis and he spent the early years of his reign conquering the nations of Syria, Phoenicia and Egypt. He managed to subdue the Scythians, Tyre and the Cimmerians. He reconstructed the temples of Marduk, and he created the famous Hanging Gardens of Babylon which is considered one of the Seven Great Wonders of the ancient world. Nebuchadnezzar died in 562 B.C. and was succeeded by Amel-Marduk, who is also known as Belshazzar.

Biblical References:

  •  Daniel 1 – 4 There are four key chapters in the book of Daniel that outlines God’s plans for Babylon and King Nebuchadnezzar.
  • 2 Kings 24 and 25 Mentions Nebuchadnezzar’s activities in Judah.
  • 2 Chronicles 36 Mentions Nebuchadnezzar’s activities in Judah from a different perspective.
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Chaldaic Kingdom, New

Chaldaic refers to Chaldea or more specifically the Chaldean language. This language was used by the people who resided in southern Mesopotamia within Babylon and it was also known as a form of Aramaic. Many people who resided within the Middle Eastern region spoke this language. This dialect had a universal appeal that was similar to how English is used in modern times. Different kingdoms and tribes used it as a primary form of communication even though they might have adjusted parts of the language to fit their particular methods of speech and culture. The Babylon Kingdom that emerged with the rule of Nebopolasser was sometimes referred to as the New Chaldaic Kingdom by some scholars and historians. This is because Neboolasser was the first king of the New Babylon Dynasty which began in the 6th century B.C. which is where this appears on the Biblical Timeline.

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Daniel

The Hebrews, Canaanites and the Phoenicians spoke Chaldaic and it was used in the Bible in the time of Daniel the prophet, Ezra the scribe and when Jesus was alive. Chaldaic is a Semitic language and it became the foundation of the Arabic and Hebrew dialects. The ancient Assyrians also spoke a version of this language that similar to Babylon’s and the Hebrews used it to write some of their text within the Talmud. Chaldaic was the official language of Babylon that was spoken by the Chaldean dynasty of Babylon rulers. This language was the official tongue of Babylon when they took Judah in captivity. The kingdom Babylon introduced the Chaldaic into the Mesopotamian and Middle Eastern regions once Babylon conquered many kingdoms and tribes that resided in these areas of the world. Chaldaic became the new official languages of these conquered regions and conquered peoples had to become familiar with this speech since the Babylonians governed their lives. Chaldaic had been in use for hundreds of years and it wasn’t until the time that the Persians conquered Babylon that it began to lose its preeminence. Shortly before the Kingdom of Judah fell the Assyrians had taunted the Judeans in Hebrew but the Judean officials who were present when this situation was taking place asked the Assyrian messengers to speak in their native language so the people wouldn’t hear what they had to say. This situation reinforces the fact that the Hebrew people were probably familiar with Chaldaic as much as they were with the Assyrian tongue. Before Chaldaic became a common language throughout the Middle East it was primarily used just by the Babylonians and probably by other tribes such as the Medes. The Chaldeans were also known as a race of sorcerers, astrologers and soothsayers. They had written many of their incantations, spells and prayers in Chaldaic. Since Babylon ruled the Middle East and the Mesopotamian region they used this language to influence people to worship their gods and to spread their power. Babylonian religious services were carried out in Chaldaic and the people also used this language for commerce.

new_chaldiac
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego

The Babylonians deported many groups of the people that they conquered back to Babylon. They also forced the upper-class sons and daughters of defeated nations to become educated in their language and customs. The prophet Daniel and his companions Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were trained to serve in the royal court of Babylon. Daniel and his companions had to learn Chaldaic in order to serve as officials within Nebuchadnezzar’s royal court. They also had to know this language so that they could communicate with other officials within the empire. Daniel and his companions were required to use this language when communicating with the masses especially since Daniel was a high ranking governor for many years.

When the Persians finally conquered Babylon they still continued to use the Chaldaic language as the official dialect of the empire. They mixed it with their own speech to create a unique form of Aramaic that was similar but different to Chaldaic. Eventually, this language went out use as the primary tongue spoken in the Middle East region of the world but certain tribal groups speak a modern version of this Semetic language to this day.

Biblical References:

Daniel 1 Daniel, Shadrach, Meschach and Abednego were taken from Judah and made to learn the Babylonian (Chaldaic) language and customs.
Genesis 10 and 11 Nimrod establishes the Assyrian and Babylonian empires.
*All throughout the rest of the Bible God uses Babylon and Assyria to carry out his plans and he proclaims judgments against them. Key books include Genesis, 1 and 2 Kings, 1 and 2 Chronicles, Nahum, Jonah and Revelation.

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Esdras Prophet and Book of the Apocrypha

Esdras was an important scribe and priest for the Jewish people during the time that they returned from exile. Esdras is the Greco-Latin version of the Hebrew name Ezra, and it is also a book of the Apocrypha which is found in some versions of Catholic and Orthodox Bibles. The scribe Ezra has a book in the Bible named after him. He appears in the Old Testament during the time Nehemiah was allowed to return to his homeland to restore the Temple of Solomon and to repair the city that is where he appears on the Bible Timeline. Esdras was in captivity before he returned to Jerusalem. King Cyrus of Persia gave different Jewish leaders the right to return to Jerusalem to start the rebuilding process.

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Esdras was important to this process because he was used to reminding the people of Israel about their relationship and destiny with God. The people were reminded by Esdras on a daily basis about how important it is for them to worship God and to live a life full of holiness since they were allowed to return from captivity. He gave the Israelites important information about the important expectations that God had for them once they returned home. Many Jews had forgotten about Moses’s laws or they didn’t regard them as important anymore. Esdras helped to change this condition because he was a scholar of the Laws of Moses. Even though he was in captivity, he was still able to learn about the important laws that Moses had left for the people.

There are two books titled Esdras within the Apocrypha and the Septuagint. Once again these books can be found in some Catholic or Orthodox versions of the Bible. Some Catholic versions of the Bible contain Esdras 3 and 4. There are two books of Esdras. 1 Esdras tells of Jewish exiles after leaving Persia under Cyrus and how they restored the temple, feasted in honor of their return. How they confronted their enemies who wanted to stop them from rebuilding and how they put away foreign wives and idolatry.

2 Esdras goes into detail about how the different steps that the Jews had to take in order purify the Jews from their marriage of non-Jews. An archangel named Urial is sent to the Jews to answer important questions about the fate of men and tells a story about a man who breaths fire on a crowd of evil men. 2 Esdras also explains how the Lord was against Israel, the end of the age, seven visions of judgments and retributions, prophecies of wars and calamities and rule of Messiah for 400 years.

Even though Esdras 1 and Esdras 2 have been accepted as sacred texts, many biblical scholars do not think that these two books are inspired. The information contained in these books contradicts sound biblical doctrine. The writings also appear to have been authored from a later period after these events happened. Esdras 1 and 2 were not regarded as standard Hebrew texts. These books were obtained after the rabbinical council in Jamina pieced together the Old Testament in 90 A.D. Since Esdras 1 and 2 were found at a date after the Old Testament was formed they were not considered inspired texts by Jews and the Protestant Branch of Christianity. However, there were some Protestant church leaders, such as Martin Luther, who placed Esdras 1 and 2 in their versions of the Bible.

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Lycurgian Constitution and Legislation

The Lycurgian constitution and legislation was considered to be the prime legacy of the Spartan leader, Lycurgus. He is placed on the Bible Timeline Chart with World History during the eighth century BC. His laws had defined the powerful militaristic political state we now envision Sparta to be during those times. What made Lycurgian rule unique to all other Greek states was its insistence on not keeping historical records and issuing any form of written law. Each case that needed resolution was handled on a case to case basis. Lycurgus and his somewhat democratic form of law were instrumental to Sparta’s rise to power.

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Lycurgus
Lycurgus

The Ruler

It is believed that Lycurgus lived and reigned sometime between 800 to 630 BC. What we know of Lycurgus today can largely be attributed to old historians like Plutarch and his peers considering that Lycurgus did away with any form of historical records. Plutarch is the main source for any semblance of historical study on Lycurgus. In a way, what Plutarch discusses is more of an anecdotal collection rather than a biography. Some believe that Lycurgus may not have actually existed and is symbolic for some ancient ruler who brought sweeping change to Sparta.

The Institution

Lycurgus started the change in the political and legislative landscape by distributing the king’s power unto an elder senate. At times, a general assembly of the people would be held wherein the public would decide the fate of a piece of legislation. However, the people could not make new laws but could only approve or reject what the Senate has made. This was one of the earliest forms of democracy. This is the basic backbone of the Lycurgian constitution and legislation. Of course, not every citizen, particularly those in the upper class, favored this new arrangement but Lycurgus, according to Plutarch, succeeded in quelling opposition to his rule.

Many of the approved pieces of legislation were somehow idiosyncratic even by today’s standards. One feature compelled citizens to eat in public mess halls, into small groups called “sysstia”. These groups was generally a mixture of citizens both rich and poor. When one member disliked what was being served, they could bring their own meal, provided that they also feed everyone else in the group. Under the constitution, all manner of trade using gold or silver was banned, and iron was the new currency. Any form of occupation deemed useless was also banned, which included prostitution. Adultery was also allowed if it was done in the pursuit of creating an ideal offspring. Having an ideal baby was such an important concept during the Lycurgian era that those infants deemed defective were reportedly cast out into a cliff. The examination of an infant, if he or she was fit to live, was done by the council.

After Lycurgus

Even after the reported disappearance of Lycurgus, believed to have sought out the Oracle of Delphi and never returned, Sparta continued following the constitutional structure he presented. It is believed that this very adherence to the form of governing was the reason for Sparta becoming a powerful militaristic state in the Greek region. Many surrounding states also favored Spartans to be dispute arbitrators given the structure they followed when it come to conflict resolution. The apparent success in this otherwise crude and primitive form of democracy had led many other states to consider adopting the principles of the Lycurgian constitution and legislation.

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Assyrian Power Increased Under Tiglath-Pileser

Tiglath-Pileser was a powerful monarch who resided on the throne during the Middle Assyrian Period. Tiglath-Pilesar I. was one of the most revered rulers at the time of the Assyrian empire. He conquered many Empires and kingdoms during his reign.  He is found on the Biblical Timeline Poster with World History during the 12th century BC. The Assyrian empire was once located near the northern Mesopotamian Sea in the region of modern-day Iraq. This kingdom was originally started by the Akkadians who resided in the city of Asur which eventually became known as the Assyria.

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Tiglath-Pilesar

When Ashur-rush-Ishi the I. had passed away Tiglath-Pilesar I. had taken over the kingdom. Once he gained power, he began to immediately mobilize his armies for conquest. He reorganized his chariots and infantry to make them more effective in battle. After the army was reorganized, he quickly moved them quickly against the remaining Hittite groups that lived north of the kingdom. Anatolia was his next area of conquest, and many of the people that lived in the northern areas outside of Assyria were defeated by him. Some kingdoms, such as Melid, yielded to his power and paid him tribute without going to war. He eventually turned his attention to the south and defeated the Arameans in Syria and headed further south to fight against many kingdoms that lied in that region. Israel happened to be one of them. When Tiglath-Pilesar I marched his forces against Israel a king named Pekah ruled the nation. Pekah had killed a former monarch named Pekiah to take his position as ruler. Pekah ruled Israel in the south and King Ahaz ruled the northern kingdom of Juday. Pekah had allied himself with Rezin of Aram to attack Judah.

Ahaz called on Tiglath-Pilesar I to come to his aid, and he did. They both defeated Pekah and Rezin. After defeating the Israelites, he deported many of them back to Assyria. Tiglath-Pilesar eventually expanded his conquest all the way to coastal cities that lived near the Mesopotamian Sea. He never attacked the Phoenician coastal cities such as Tyre or Sidon. Instead, he took a trip within this great sea and this event is recorded in his inscriptions. Many years later when the Babylonians became a powerful threat, Tiglath-Pilesar tried to conquer them as well. Tiglath-Pilesar I. was also a city builder as well as a conqueror.

During his reign, he created many public works and established many temples that were dedicated to his gods that included their chief deities Nanna and Shamash. This Assyrian monarch also helped to developed public works and to maintain order within his territories that he ruled. Inscriptions about Tiglath make him out to be a mighty and exceptional king. He apparently had a magnetic personality and was a well-respected leader. Some ancient texts even claim that he had cultivated a spirit of fear among his people and conquered subjects. Many inscriptions about this king can be found on the walls of the palaces that he constructed during his reign. Tiglath-Pilesar ruled for about 40 years, and he died in 1076 B.C.

Biblical References to Tiglath-Pilesar

  • 2 Kings 16:7 Ahaz requests Tiglath-Pilesar’s help against the Israelites.
  • 2 Kings 16:7-9 Ahaz pays tribute to Tiglath-Pilesar I. The Israelis are deported back to Assyria after they are defeated by Tiglath.
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Jair a Judge In Israel

Jair the Gileadite was judged over Israel for twenty-two years. He is found on the Biblical Timeline around 1200 BC.   His rule over Israel was fairly a long one. The Scripture doesn’t state that Jair did anything wrong while he was in office. The unique quality of the life of Jair was the fact that he had 30 sons that had 30 cities. According to the book of Judges, the cities were named Havothjair. In the Bible Havothjair was a group of villages that consisted of at least 30 different units. They were previously owned by various Israeli rulers in the past starting with Jair, the son of Manasseh. Hezron was the father of Caleb, and he had a son named Segub who had 23 towns in Gilead. He eventually lost some of these territories to Geshur and Aram. These two men were descendants of Machir, the father of Gilead. Jair’s sons had come to control the various towns and settlements of Havothjair. Jair, the judge, was connected to the line of Machir through his father, Segub. His sons held had probably inherited one of the many different cities of Havothjair from him.

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Jair
Owning a donkey was a sign of wealth

Most people in ancient Israel did not ride donkeys or horses as a form of transportation. Owning a donkey or a horse in ancient Israel was the same as a person having a vehicle for personal transportation today. The fact that Jair’s sons had 30 donkeys was also an indication of his wealth and status. Since his sons held thirty cities, they apparently had servants and were men of means and status. Jair being their father must have been a well-respected city member that was chosen by the elders to become a judge. The history of Havothjair is usually ascribed to the various Israelites who ruled the area at the time of Manasseh. The name Jair also appears all throughout the Old Testament, and it was all connected to various events that happened in or near Havothjair during its time of importance. Jair was also used sometimes to describe Havothjair.

Biblical References to Jair

  • Judges 10:3 Jair the Gileadite becomes the next judge of Israel after Abimelech. He judged Israel for 22 years before he died
  •  Judges 10:4 He had 30 sons who rode on thirty donkeys and held 30 cities.
  •  Judges 10:5 Jair died and was buried in Camon.
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Tracing the Sons of Noah

son_of_noah
‘Noah dividing the world between his sons (a Russian picture from the 18th century).’

Find out about each of the 16 grandsons of Noah and the nations they populated.

Open The Bible Timeline Online for the years after the flood

Click on each of the 16 grandsons of Noah to learn about him and his descendants.

Each link takes you to complete information on the grandson, his nations, the Biblical references and additional online resources.

 

Here’s a synopsis of what you’ll find

1.  Sons of Ham

Cush is Ethiopia

Mizraim is Egypt

Phut is Lybia

Canaan or Palestine Israel and Palestine today

2.  Sons of Shem (the Semites)

Elam,Persia (Iran)

      Asshur, Assyria

     Arphaxad,Chaldeans, Hebrews and Arabians

     Lud, Lydia (western Turkey)

     Aram Syria

3.  Japheth:
Gomer:  Gauls who settled France, Spain, Wales, Armenia, northern Turkey

Magog: Goths, Finns, Sweden, Southern Russia

Madia:  Medes  India

Javan: Ionians of Greece

Tubal: Throughout Europe, Turkey and Siberia

Meshech: Muscovites, Armenians, Caucasians

Tiras:

China, Japan and the eastern countries:  by Kittim Grandson of Japheth.

However other Biblical scholars believe differently.  For example this article suggests the Chinese are descended from Shem.

Reference:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sons_of_Noah#mediaviewer/File:Noah_(Grigoriants%27_coll.).jpg