Jan 19, 2008

An ancient seal...

According to a recent story in The Jerusalem Post,   a temple seal dating back to the time of Nehemiah was found in an excavation outside the Old City walls of Jerusalem.   The seal was found near an area described as the Dung Gate.   Lead archaeologist Dr. Eilat Mazar announced the finding on Wednesday.


The seal is engraved on a black elliptical stone approximately 2.1 cm by 1.8 cm.   The engraving on the stone shows two bearded priests standing on either side of an altar with their hands raised forward in a position of worship.   Above the altar are markings showing a crescent moon and the Babylonian chief god Sin.   Dr. Mazar was not surprised to find the cultic god on the seal.


But it is the name on the seal that is generating excitement in the archaeological community.   Under the altar, the name "Temech.. is engraved.   In the Old Testament, the Prophet Nehemiah lists those who had returned to Jerusalem after the Babylonian captivity.   The children of Temech (Temah) are listed among those returning.   According to Dr. Mazar, "The seal of the Temech family gives us a direct connection between archeology and the Biblical sources and serves as actual evidence of a family mentioned in the Bible.   One cannot help being astonished by the credibility of the biblical source as seen by the archaeological find...  




Dr. Mazar is well-known in the archaeological community for her prominent excavation that recently may have uncovered King David's palace.


As we've been discussing in our Mythbusters series, more and more archaeologists are beginning to recognize the authenticity of the Biblical account.   While archaeologists don't necessarily believe the theology in the Old Testament, they are increasingly validating its history.

Many "scholars.. believe that characters in the Biblical account were simply legends.   But Jesus never describes the Old Testament as figurative.   Jesus spoke of Noah, Jonah, and David as actual people who lived according to the Biblical account. (Matthew 19:1-6, Matthew 12:39, Matthew 19:8-9, etc.)  


It's refreshing when science catches up.




Pastor David Hook

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