An exciting find was unearthed in an archeological dig by Eli Shukron and University of Haifa professor Gershon Galil, as reported by the Biblical Archaeology Society.
A limestone fragment dating back to the 8th century B.C. was uncovered in 2007, and it is thought to be part of a larger monument. The partially eroded text contains six letters in paleo-Hebrew script — used before the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C.
Two lines each contain three legible characters, according to BAS.
On the first line, the letters “qyh” can be discerned. While it is impossible to know with certainty what word the characters were part of, it is believed the full word could have once been either “Hizqyhw” or “Hizqiyahu” — Hezekiah in English.
The second line contains two letters, then a dot and a third letter.
Scholars determined that the first two letters were the final letters in one word, and the third letter was the beginning of another word.
Some have suggested that the first word, ending in “kh,” was “brkh,” or the Hebrew word “beracha,” meaning pool.
While the second word is unclear, this interpretation makes sense as the site, known as Hezekiah’s Tunnel, delivers freshwater into the Pool of Siloam.
For biblical scholars, Jews and Christians alike, this is yet another piece of evidence supporting the biblical account.
Will archaeologists continue to uncover proof of biblical narratives?
In the Bible, Hezekiah was the 13th king of Judah. According to 2 Chronicles 29:2, “he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord, according to all that David his father had done.”
The writing style on the fragment is similar to another inscription thought to have been written prior to the Assyrian King Sennacherib’s siege of Jerusalem in 701 B.C., the BAS report said.
The water tunnel system is believed to have played a critical role in undercutting Sennacherib’s assault as it guaranteed fresh water flowed into the city.
This prevented the Assyrian king from forcing Jerusalem’s surrender by cutting off river access, a common tactic of siege warfare during the era.
“He answered, ‘The man called Jesus made mud and anointed my eyes and said to me, “Go to Siloam and wash.” So I went and washed and received my sight.’”
Many dismiss the historicity of the figure of Jesus as well as kings like Hezekiah.
Discoveries like this, however, reinforce biblical authenticity and give yet another reason for Christians to cling to their faith and hope in the Word of God.
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