Thursday, January 21, 2010

Oldest Hebrew Inscription Found (1000 BC)

Professor Gershon Galil (Department of Biblical Studies, University of Haifa) has deciphered an inscription on a pottery shard dated from the 10th century BC. This is now the earliest discovered Hebrew inscription. This broken piece of pottery was discovered provincial town in Judea in the Elah Valley which is in the hill country of Judah. This location is important not because it the location of David's battle with Goliath but because of its remote area away from Jerusalem. This means that if their writing was this developed in the Valley we can know they could be writing at the literary level used in the books of Judges or Samuel in Jerusalem at this time. The significance of this find is that we now have evidence supporting the earlier date for the writing of these scriptures.

Prof. Galil explains, “It can now be maintained that it was highly reasonable that during the 10th century BCE, during the reign of King David, there were scribes in Israel who were able to write literary texts and complex historiographies such as the books of Judges and Samuel.” He also noted that "the complexity of the text discovered in Khirbet Qeiyafa, (a fortress town) along with the impressive fortifications revealed at the site, refute the claims denying the existence of the Kingdom of Israel at that time." The existence of the nation of Israel and a kingdom of Jews at this time as proclaimed in the Bible is now confirmed. (The excavation of Khirbet Qeiyafa has recently revealed it had two gates, a unique feature compared to other towns. The two gates most like mean we should identify this site as the biblical Sha’arayim since this name means "two gates.")

Many liberal scholars have tried to rewrite the history of Israel without using the Bible and have only used archaeological evidence, i.e. based on archaeological evidence only. They are called minimalist since they claim very little of the Old Testament is historical. Minimalist often deny the existence of a Jewish state or kingdom and assign David and his kingdom to the realm of myth or legend. Finds like these force them to reconsider the Bible's historicity based on their own standard of validation. This archaeological find is evidence that the Bible is true and the theories that come against it are unfounded.

See the process of study of the potsherd HERE

A couple of articles: ONE . . . TWO

Photos of the Khirbet Qeiyafa Archaeological Dig



































Deciphered on January 7, 2010 by Professor Galil. The text lines say:
1 you shall not do [it], but worship the [Lord].
2 Judge the sla[ve] and the wid[ow] / Judge the orph[an]
3 [and] the stranger. [Pl]ead for the infant / plead for the po[or and]
4 the widow. Rehabilitate [the poor] at the hands of the king.
5 Protect the po[or and] the slave / [supp]ort the stranger.
Galyn Wiemers
http://www.generationword.com/

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Penn Tomassetti said...

Wow, that is awesome!

It makes me think about saying to those skeptics, "Duh! OF course they could write the Bible back then."

It's great to see how archaeology proves God's Word over and over again. Thanks for this info.