Current Events Articles: April 2009

Tracking Down Shebnayahu, Servant of the King posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

In Isaiah 22 the prophet rails in God’s name against the excesses of the officials in King Hezekiah’s palace. In 1870 the famous French diplomat, scholar and archaeologist Charles Clermont-Ganneau excavated a partially destroyed tomb high up on the cliff overlooking the Kidron Valley and the City of David in Jerusalem. Over the entrance to the rock-cut burial chamber was an inscription that, unfortunately, he was unable to decipher. Was this the tomb of Shebna the high court official mentioned in Isaiah who is, literally, “over the house” or in charge of the palace (often identified as the treasurer) and who was castigated by the prophet for building himself such an elaborate tomb on the cliff?

A Look at Bethsaida posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

As the early Christian pilgrims would wend their weary way from west to east around the Sea of Galilee, they would pass from Tiberias on to their final destination at Kursi, passing at least four Jewish fishing villages known to Jesus. But before reaching their destination, they would first have to cross the northern Jordan, probably in one of those little boats, like the so-called Jesus boat now in the Yigal Allon Museum at Ginossar, at a place they thought was Bethsaida, which they would venerate as another fishing village known to the master.

'Foot' Structures Found in the Jordan Valley posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

On the eve of the Passover holiday, researchers from the University of Haifa reveal an exceptional and exciting archaeological discovery that dates back to the time of the People of Israel’s settlement in the country: For the first time, enclosed sites identified with the biblical sites termed in Hebrew gilgal, which were used for assemblies, preparation for battle, and rituals, have been revealed in the Jordan valley.

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