Surprising Discovery May Prove Existence of the Jewish Temple
A recent surprising discovery in the Valley of Elah, which borders the West Bank, may have been inspired by the ancient Temple of Solomon, as it is described in Biblical texts.
The find, a small model building, was no larger than 35 cm x 20 cm (13 inches x 7.9 inches). It was hollow on the inside, and it appears to be a box used to hold sacred objects.
The historical archaeological find was discovered at Khirbet Qeiyafa, a fortified city dated to the time of King David.
Most interesting about the small box was that its architectural design matches the Biblical descriptions of the Temple of Solomon.
Archaeologist Yosef Garfinkel said the find could aid in understanding difficult Biblical texts about the Temple, which were written 3,000 years ago.
He said, “How can we understand, today, terms that were written thousands of years ago? The understanding of concepts from back then, and now, has changed over the years.”
However, he said, “this model helps us to understand all the technical terms that appear in the Bible,” adding that until this find was discovered, archaeologists, “did not know exactly what [the terms] meant.”
Garfinkel said, “Now, when you see this model and read the descriptions in the Bible, we can understand what they mean. This finding sheds light on the biblical account of the Temple.”
Garfinkel added that the find also resolved another major question: whether the Temple of Solomon existed or not. He said that there are disagreements between archaeologists over whether the events described in the Bible occurred at all, or were mere myths. “However,” said Garfinkel, “here we excavated a model of the Temple, which dates to that time period.”
According to the archaeologist, “this model is evidence that a royal construction occurred in Judea during the time of David and Solomon,” noting that since this model was found “in Khirbet Qeiyafa, a day’s walk from Jerusalem, in a place that clearly belongs to the period of David and Solomon,” the link to the first Temple was obvious.