Biblical stories of military events in kingdoms of Israel, Judah really did happen, archaeologists show

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TEL AVIV, Israel — Biblical stories of military campaigns against the kingdoms of Israel and Judah appear to be more than just legendary stories, according to the latest scientific research. Researchers in Israel say ancient Egyptians, Arameans, Assyrians, and Babylonians really waged these battles. The team found evidence of these historical events in burnt remnants from 21 archaeological sites.

Study authors were able to connect them with Earth’s geomagnetic field at the time. The analysis shows the army of Hazael, King of Aram-Damascus, was responsible for the destruction of several cities. They include Tel Rehov, Tel Zayit, Horvat Tevet, and Gath — one of the five Philistine states.

Findings also indicate the Edomites razed parts of Southern Judah to the ground after taking advantage of the fall of Jerusalem.

The study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, also refutes the theory that Hazael conquered Tel Beth-Shean.

“Based on the similarity or difference in intensity and direction of the magnetic field, we can either corroborate or disprove hypotheses claiming that specific sites were burned during the same military campaign. Moreover, we have constructed a variation curve of field intensity over time which can serve as a scientific dating tool, similar to the radiocarbon dating method,” says lead author Yoav Vaknin, a student at the Hebrew University, in a media release.

Yoav Vaknin measuring at the site
Yoav Vaknin measuring at the site. (Credit: Shai Halevi, Israel Antiquities Authority.)

How did Earth’s unique fields reveal these events?

Earth’s ever-changing geomagnetic field is generated by the motion of liquid iron in the outer core of the planet. It shields the planet from dangerous radiation and enables technology to function, from satellites to phone lines.

Various dating methods have placed the destruction of Gath in the Judean foothills at around 830 BC. However, researchers were unable to verify that Hazael was also responsible for the destruction of Tel Rehov, Tel Zayit, and Horvat Tevet.

Vaknin and colleagues synchronized the magnetic fields recorded at all four sites, making a very strong case for them occurring during the same campaign, but they recorded a totally different magnetic field at Tel Beth-Shean — suggesting it wasn’t attacked by Hazael.

Instead, the magnetic data suggests this city, along with two other sites in northern Israel, were probably destroyed nearly a century earlier. This would correspond with the military campaign by the Egyptian Pharaoh Shoshenq, described in the Hebrew Bible. An inscription on a wall of the Temple of Amun in Karnak, Egypt, mentions Beth-Shean as one of his conquests.

The groundbreaking investigation also provides new insights regarding the end of the Kingdom of Judah.

Burnt mud stones.
Burnt mud stones. (Credit: Tel Aviv University.)

“The last days of the Kingdom of Judah are widely debated. Some researchers, relying on archaeological evidence, argue that Judah was not completely destroyed by the Babylonians. While Jerusalem and frontier cities in the Judean foothills ceased to exist, other towns in the Negev, the southern Judean Mountains and the southern Judean foothills remained almost unaffected,” says Prof. Erez Ben Yosef.

“Now, the magnetic results support this hypothesis, indicating that the Babylonians were not solely responsible for Judah’s ultimate demise. Several decades after they had destroyed Jerusalem and the First Temple, sites in the Negev, which had survived the Babylonian campaign, were destroyed – probably by the Edomites who took advantage of the fall of Jerusalem. This betrayal and participation in the destruction of the surviving cities may explain why the Hebrew Bible expresses so much hatred for the Edomites – for example, in the prophecy of Obadiah.”

Residual magnetism in ancient burnt-down buildings is also helping biblical experts to date other finds in the area.

“The new dating tool is unique because it is based on geomagnetic data from sites, whose exact destruction dates are known from historical sources. By combining precise historical information with advanced, comprehensive archaeological research, we were able to base the magnetic method on reliably anchored chronology,” adds Prof. Oded Lipschits of Tel Aviv University.

Map of the studied destruction layers and the different military campaigns
Map of the studied destruction layers and the different military campaigns. (Credit: Itamar Ben-Ezra)

The study adds to a growing body of evidence that the Bible is a true, accurate, and a historical text.

“Earth’s magnetic field is critical to our existence. Most people don’t realize that without it there could be no life on earth – since it shields us from cosmic radiation and the solar wind. In addition, both humans and animals use it to navigate,” explains Prof. Ron Shaar, who led the geophysical aspects of the study.

“The geomagnetic field is generated by earth’s outer core, at a depth of 2,900 km, by currents of liquid iron. Due to the chaotic motion of this iron, the magnetic field changes over time. Until recently scientists believed that it remains quite stable for decades, but archaeomagnetic research has contradicted this assumption by revealing some extreme and unpredictable changes in antiquity,” Prof. Shaar continues.

“Our location here in Israel is uniquely conducive to archaeomagnetic research, due to an abundance of well-dated archaeological findings. Over the past decade we have reconstructed magnetic fields recorded by hundreds of archaeological items. By combining this dataset with the data from Yoav’s investigation of historical destruction layers we were able to form a continuous variation curve showing rapid, sharp changes in the geomagnetic field. This is wonderful news, both for archaeologists who can now use geomagnetic data to determine the age of ancient materials and for geophysicists studying the earth’s core.”

Yoav Vaknin
Yoav Vaknin (Credit: Tel Aviv University)

Last year, scientists found “sin cities” Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed by a meteor “cloudburst” that incinerated all 8,000 inhabitants. God was said to have been enraged by their wickedness, raining “fire and brimstone” upon them. The giant space rock created a fireball. It may also have led to Jericho’s walls “tumbling down,” just 20 miles away.

South West News Service writer Mark Waghorn contributed to this report.

Comments

  1. wow there is real evidence of sodom and gomorah 5000 years ago. book hebrews- God is the same yesterday today and forever(He has a long memory). hmmmm I wonder what Abrahams God (genesis 17-18) thinks of todays LGBTO especiallickally among the chosen. Is He 2-faced, or are they just deluded or what. heres one sindication- hurricane IAN the great just last month did a wild uturn around florida and cut back like OJ running and first hit ground zero sanibel island destroying it(on 60 minutes- did you see)- a small speck but 1/10000th of florida pooplation and land mass. right on target today as yesterflay. i once lived in florida and what they didnt say on 30 minutes(they only tell their half) was that tiny sanihell and I mean hell is known for its gay naked partier wild beaches. hmmmm God 5000 tears ago Sodom= God last month Sanihell or not. I will robinson (danger) slay God is consistent like it or not

  2. Never had any doubt. God’s Word remains enough truth for me to have faith in Him, even though I may not fully comprehend it. Who can understand the mind of God? I am continually amazed at the insults of those who deny God use. Yet the things they scoff at are accurately contained in His Word thousands of years before the science the naysayers who say, “Go with the science” proves His Word is true. over and over again. Your life is no accident or lucky combinations of molecules. It was loveingly and individually crafted by the God/Creator that loves you.

  3. God exists for those wanting there to be God. Certainly not because there has been any true manifestations any solid proof that there truly is God. I’ve chosen to be a disbeliever and love life, just like everyone else.

    1. I found some of the truest simplest manifestations is a man or woman desiring to live a life pleasing to God and because of loving God treating others well even when they don’t deserve it. I find even when they suffer as a result there is a peaceful cotentment or quiet happiness (joy I guess?) for the believer, not that they are not hurt by others, but don’t see the need to get back what’s do them and find their strength in God. It seems to be something on them or in there life that makes them differant. And when I watch the many times real blessing come to them with no regret. That I think alone tells me there is God and He blesses those who really have placed their trust and believe in him.
      I don’t see this in other people, maybe some pretend but it doesn’t last for the most part people can be real cruel and if not cruel, dishonest and not sincere and not trustworthy. I never bought the line that people are basically good apart from knowing God lived through a relationship developed with him. But maybe that’s just me.

  4. I guess your historians can deny reality and stories like this all day long, as others have been digging up sites left and right for the last 100 plus years that confirm and prove what the bible says.

  5. There is nothing historically noteworthy about Ancient Israel other than Roman Occupation and the birth of Christianity. Unprecedented archeological excavation in modern Israel proves Jews existed there surrounded by greater Empires.

  6. Some very unread people posting here. There has been enormous levels of research on the Bible, Bible stories, Bible characters and so on. Probably the most intensive study of any area in the entire world, dating back several thousand years. What has been firmly determined is that most Bible stories are fiction. They do not accurately portray historical events, time frames, locations and claims. But accuracy and truth have rarely stopped the religious. No historian actually believes the stories about David or Moses or the Exodus are actual real events that occurred in history. But these experts are being ignored by the religious fanatics who have a vested interest in perpetuating the so-called “truths” about the Bible. They are neither trained nor educated in the level of research and discovery that has taken place. Bart Ehrman, Richard Carrier, Aaron Ra and many, many others have published works, some peer-reviewed on their unraveling of ancient history. Virtually no evidence was found in the historical record that indicated that many of the Bible claims and characters existed. These are the facts that matter since the Bible declares itself to be accurate, true and the only thing that should be believed. Which of course is quite ridiculous as self-testament isn’t evidence of anything. Finally, most of the religious have virtually no concept of all of the centuries long torturous process that literally “created” the Bible as it is known today. Thousands of manuscripts and tens of thousands of fragments were quite literally tossed out, to only include a crafted narrative that fit the Bible makers who have attempted to forge a storyline that fits their preferred narrative (never mind that it is not historically accurate). Over 30,000 errors, interpolations, redactions and contradictions are presently found in the current versions of the Bible (all of them) to this day, which are well known to weave a false historical narrative (these events, stories, words simply didn’t happen as claimed). This is why none of the claims in Bible ever come true, and why there are so many different claims to the Bible stories (tens of thousands). The Bible is a curated work of fiction, almost entirely, with little historical accuracy and truth. It should not be considered anything less. Those that do not actually read the research and the finding will falsely argue in support of their own confirmation bias. Doesn’t matter – history doesn’t actually care what you “believe” or not. Belief does not make a thing true – evidence (or lack thereof) does. Ignorance is widespread and dangerous regarding “biblical truths” but that’s always been the case, spawning genocide and wars, torture and death across the world, all in the the name of ignorant, unlearned and uneducated “belief”. The millions of dead at the hands of “believers” is yet another historical fact that they try to bury and ignore. Killing in the name of fiction is something you would not expect in the 21st century, but yet it still goes on.

    1. Bart Ehrman, the atheist’s wise man. No thank you, I will stick to the wisdom of our Lord Jesus Christ.

      The wisdom of God has created this world to be paradise for man, whom he gave free choice to, because he didn’t want his creatures to be drones, who then broke God’s commandment, was rightly cursed to die by the Just One, who then in a selfless act of merciful agape love, offered himself to die in our place, to give us a way out of our cursed state, because we broke the Holy God’s commandment. So fear this Logos, who speaks and galaxies come out of his mouth.

      When you speak, spittle, soundwaves and carbon monoxide spew forth, along with lies, and foolish talking, when he speaks light, and all the laws of physics, biology, chemistry, DNA, morality, blessings and cursings and even miracles come forth, the universe as John Lennox professor of Mathematics Emeritus at Oxford says, is not a closed system, God can insert whatever he wants into it, do whatever he wants, he is Almighty, eternal, blessed forever. His name is JESUS, the Logos.

    2. Killing in the name of fiction.. in the 21. Century. – your comment offers same empty arguments with no proofs. Are you saying Christians are responsible murders that Muslim terrorist have done? That shows your bias ignorance. Evolutionary beliefs in 20th century killed more people then all the centuries combine. Including Chinese wars that killed millions. Man fought two major world wars that was driven by Evolutionary beliefs. Oddly Nazis murdered all who they saw lesser humans. Jew are not a race but a religion. There are plenty of archeological proofs. If you only care to look for and care. Biblical archeology.
      All trough the centuries Jews have been mass murdered and accused. Just as God warned them not to turn their backs to Him. They’ll suffer curses, after offering them unimaginable riches and blessings. As it is written in the Deuteronomy 30. Thousands men have said same thing you wrote. After while trying to proof Bible wrong and they failed. God is real as you and me and so is Satan. But as Bible writes – in last days coffers will come mocking and turning their backs to God. Following old wives tails and false idols.

  7. Well how about that. Numerous Hebrew writings of the periods(s) to include the Bible tell us this history. Many writings found in Mesopotamia confirm this. Regarding Egypt there is some missing history – seems they never wrote about defeats just victories – when studying Egyptian history or hearing a tour guide you find holes in their history (especially the exodus history).

    Now the stones speak out.

    But sill many have closed mines and ignore fact. They have their own agenda and fact doesn’t matter.

  8. For centuries there have been critics of the Bible, claiming any sort of libel and claiming such nonsense as “David and Moses” did not exist. Nor, according to these desperately deluded ones, did the Exodus occur.

    Yet, consistently and persistently the Bible is found as a source of historical truth, and for those with eyes to see, spiritual guidance.

    This nonsensical demand that the Bible be fiction, or allegory stems from the Enlightenment, the intellectual reaction to oppressive practices by the church in the Medieval times. Moreover, it is supported by those who would prefer to be their own god, rather than recognize that God not only exists, but is who He says He is.

    Look at the current world through the biblical lens and you may see it is time to get this right.

    1. Incorrect; allegorical interpretation of Hebrew-Christian literature dates back to the ancient world. The Jews did it with Midrashic methods and multiple schools of early Christian thought did as well, the most prominent being the Alexandrian School and the students of Origen.

    2. Ahh, garbage. Prove it. Everything you wrote is false. The real experts absolutely do not agree with your claims. The fear-mongering you’ve embraced is in your head. It’s the same garbage others have written for centuries and none of it ever came true. You’re the one that needs to wake up and “get this right”.

    1. Time and time again the Bible is confirmed.

      One of my favorite story is Kind David didn’t exist. Helena claimed the City of David was on a Mount Moriah (Har Moed) finger that came out of the Zion gate – they dug and dug and no city.

      Years later when the Bible and logic was applied, they found the City of David and plenty of proof. It was two fingers to the east of what the Emperies Mother claimed. Right below the Temple Mount where it should have been. I met a IDF general who bought a parking lot in that area (he knew the Bible & terrain) and low and behold the City of David.

      Helena screwed up a lot of sites and the Catholics (who own most of the sites) still to this day support the false sites. It is even required that he Israeli tour guides support this false information.

    2. You’ve either got to be kidding or don’t know how to fact-check. The Bible has proven to be wrong about almost everything. Bogus “interpretations” notwithstanding, it’s grossly inaccurate.

      1. You make strong general assertions, such as saying “the Bible has been proven to be wrong about almost everything” but give no specific examples of where the Bible has been proven wrong. Specific examples please.

  9. You either believe the KJVBible or you don’t. The Jews don’t believe any more than the rest of the world. They are reprobates. The Bible says that anyone can be saved from the rath of Holy God if they would just believe in the Son of God! Stop acting like you know more than The Lord!

    1. Do you mean the same King James version that was translated from the Textus Receptus (misnomer), itself compiled by Erasmus from a scarce collection of manuscripts now widely-recognized to be inferior, and which Erasmus himself later admitted was a flawed product?

    2. The Jews are the chosen people of God. They have suffered for their rejection of Jesus as the Son of God, but they are, nevertheless, the chosen people of God with who He has a covenant to the end of days. Don’t ever forget THAT part of the Bible, lest you become something you say you hate.

      1. The Lord God chose a Semite people to create the basis for the coming of Jesus, so yes they were the chosen of God and performed their designated task perfectly. Once that task was done, God created the Diaspora to scatter His peoples over the whole Earth. They were never supposed to return to today’s Palestine!

      2. Not to offend, but by the time of the crucifiction, all Jewish people had been cut off from Israel according to God’s laws. Jesus as the perfect Lamb of God was the only fulfiller of the law. The veil of the temple was rent at the Lords death. Jesus is Israel. When Jesus died, Israel ceased to exist. And thus now, Gods people, or his nation of priest, have to be adopted into the family, the adoption through Christ. Jesus is Israel. For them to be accepted back and be Gods SPIRITUAL people, they must accept Jesus as Lord, for it says all shall bend knee and confess he is Lord. Jesus is Israel. rom9;1-8

        1. There is zero ambiguity in Genesis 17 that God’s covenant with Abraham is for all time.
          “And I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you in their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and your descendants after you.”
          God did not say until His Son came, He said everlasting (twice).
          Also, gentiles are talked about nowhere in Revelation, beyond the young lions asking stupid questions. The gentile never replaces the Jews as God’s chosen people.

          Genesis 17:1-14
          When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am Almighty God; walk before Me and be blameless. And I will make My covenant between Me and you, and will multiply you exceedingly.” Then Abram fell on his face, and God talked with him, saying: “As for Me, behold, My covenant is with you, and you shall be a father of many nations. No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you a father of many nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. And I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you in their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and your descendants after you. Also I give to you and your descendants after you the land in which you are a stranger, all the land of Canaan, as an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.”

          And God said to Abraham: “As for you, you shall keep My covenant, you and your descendants after you throughout their generations. This is My covenant which you shall keep, between Me and you and your descendants after you: Every male child among you shall be circumcised; and you shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskins, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between Me and you. He who is eight days old among you shall be circumcised, every male child in your generations, he who is born in your house or bought with money from any foreigner who is not your descendant. He who is born in your house and he who is bought with your money must be circumcised, and My covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant. And the uncircumcised male child, who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that person shall be cut off from his people; he has broken My covenant.”

    3. Interesting. Your comment is approved but comments that point out the flaws in this article are not. Stop acting like you speak for God – you absolutely don’t. You’re just as ignorant and uninformed as the rest of the permitted posters here. READ SOME HISTORY. Read the actual biblical research and the study of its creation. You would have your eyes opened to what REALLY happened and what is true. You claimed in your comment that it’s about ‘belief’. Not true. It’s about truth, facts, evidence and the knowledge to know what these elements actually mean. It is not about ‘belief’. We’ve all seen how anyone can believe anything, but that does not make it true. What makes truth is evidence – and the bible lacks enormous quantities of that very thing. For example, there is not a single shred of evidence that Christ ever existed in the historical record (contemporary for his alleged time). Virtually nothing has ever been found. All of the writings about Christ date from decades to hundreds of years later. None are first-hand accounts. All are considered fabrications too by the real experts who study this sort of thing. Most agree that they are embellishments of the Book of Mark. But of course, none of the apostles wrote the four Gospels. These books (and the entire rest of the Bible) have been completely deconstructed and examined, with a comparison to known historical events. What the Bible gets wrong is severe, extensive and well-documented. There are extremely valid reason to NOT believe “the bible”, especially the deeply flawed KJV. The real reprobates are those that “believe a strong delusion” which is exactly what those who do not read are. They believe in a fiction. Nobody bothers to ask the question why the “bible” is the “book to believe” especially when it is so well-known to be dead wrong about so much. You’ve been told that you must believe in this book and don’t look too closely either. If you do, you will learn it does not match the historical records accurately enough to be ‘believed’. You might as well pick up a Harry Potter book and proclaim it as your “truth”. They are both fictionalized accounts of events that never happened. Or remain in your delusions.

      None of you apparently realize that this very article is propaganda and does not “prove” it’s claims at all. The hypothesis posed is just that – guesswork, which you all fell for. You should be asking yourselves why StudyFinds even publishes this sort of propaganda and then narrates the comments to support only what they find “acceptable”. They’re not promoting truth, but another fiction in support of a narrative that brings readers. This article is just fluff and full of conjecture and speculation. What you think they’re claiming isn’t facts or “proof” of the Bible, it absolutely isn’t.

      1. No it is not belief it is called Faith! Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. In other words you have Faith in your atheistic views we have faith that God exist! In other words Faith is the assurance of things hoped for and a conviction of things not seen! It is our title deed to eternal life! Faith is our title deed to eternal life! Without it u cannot pray, Without it u can never know God, Without it you are lost to din with no forgiveness! For he that cometh to God must believe that he is!! Faith has two sides Intellect and will! Faith contains an intellectual conviction that Jesus is God! And it must contain a volitional surrender of our will to Jesus as our Master! NO FAITH NO JESUS NO GOD NO ETERNAL SALVATION! I will take my Christian Faith over ur atheistic assumptions WE GIND OUT THE TRUTH AT THE MOMENT OF DEATH! I HOPE YOU REPENT! PEACE ALL!

    4. If the first part of your comment had not been a direct contradiction to everything else you wrote, I might have passed it by. But it was, and for that reason i respond. In order for there to have BEEN a KJV Holy Bible it had to be compiled from a Bible which came before it. And like it or not, admit it or not, believe it or not, the Bible is a JEWISH historical document. You, me, even King James himself, who commissioned the recompiling of the Bible, which you now read, was not around to be part of the original work. So, you call on a VERSION of a document to be the most accurate there is, while ignoring the fact that it’s FOUNDATION is the documents which came before. All this, and you haven’t even asked the question of who was King James, and why did he feel the Bible needed to be recompiled?

      You’re lost even before you wake up and lift your head from the pillow, fellow human.

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