Biblical Archeology

There is a segment of today’s population, including some Christians, who consider parts of the Bible, especially the Old Testament, simply as the stories of an unlearned, primitive people. As such they believe that much more is fable than fact.

But over the last fifty years or so archeological sites where the scenes of Biblical action took place are confirming and not disproving the Biblical accounts. At one time Luke, the physician of the NT, was considered a poor observer of the geography of his time, but slowly, through archeology, each one of his observations are being proved correct, so much so, that today his writings have become the base by which other’s writings are measured.
So let’s look at another more ancient example than Luke, one that dates from approximately 750 BC, during the reigns of Uzziah of Judah and Jeraboam of Israel. The prophet we will reference here will be Amos, son of Tekoa, a shepherd. In the very first book of the Book of Amos he says he’s writing his prophesy two years before the earthquake, and then lists God’s judgments on various peoples for their unfaithfulness and wickedness. He singles out the city of Bethel and Israel in particular for turning their backs on Him. The effects of this predicted earthquake are listed in several verses noting that the alter in Bethel shall be broken (3:14) and the temple itself destroyed (9:1). “For behold, the Lord commandeth, and he will smite the great house with breaches, and the little house with clefts.” (6:11) In 8:8 he says the land will tremble and people will be devoured like a flood.

Now some may say, yeah, so what; there was an earthquake. The question here is whether the Bible is true or just made up stories. In this case, Biblical archeology has confirmed that there was indeed a great earthquake around the time in question. Excavations around Hazor in northern Israel and other sites including Gezer and Lachish reaffirm the event. Walls made of hewn stones several tons in weight have been found cracked and moved out of alignment several inches. Leaning walls, all bent in same direction in cities a hundred kilometers apart from one another all testify to an earthquake that today’s scientists estimate as having been 8.2 at its epicenter. It must have been quite the disaster because over two hundred years later the prophet Zechariah said, “Yea, ye shall flee, like you fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah the King of Judah.” (Zech 14:5)
I realize though that with this evidence one can acknowledge that there was an earthquake 2700 years ago but there’s still no proving that God had anything to do with it. That is so. The point here is that the Bible is not devoid of historical accuracy, in fact, is being searched out, examined, and proven more and more true as time and investigation continues. Does it make you think that maybe some of the other negative assumptions or misconceptions you might have about Scripture, things you thought as being only fables, might also really be true?

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