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Index To Archaeology And The Bible

 

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Seals

The Seals

Baruch..Jeremiah’s scribe: One of the most interesting discoveries in recent years was the finding of two clay seals, that bear the impression of the actual seal used by Baruch, the scribe of Jeremiah the prophet who transcribed the Book of Jeremiah. Both bear the inscription, "Belonging to Berekhyahu, son of Neriyahu, the Scribe." One of these clay seals is on view in the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. However, the second seal was found in Jerusalem earlier in this century and purchased by collector Shlomo Moussaieff of London who owns the greatest private collection of ancient Jewish inscriptions in the world. This second clay seal also reveals a fingerprint.

King Jeroboam: At the beginning of this century a seal was discovered in Israel that bore an inscription of a lion and the words, "Belonging to Shema servant of Jeroboam." This find indicates that it belonged to an official of King Jeroboam of Israel. Other seals have been discovered confirming the Biblical records about King Uzziah (777 to 736 B.C.) and King Hezekiah (726 to 697 B.C.).

King Hosea:  Another important seal found in Jerusalem dates from the seventh century before Christ and is inscribed as follows: "Belonging to Abdi Servant of Hoshea." This seal made of orange chalcedony, used to authenticate royal documents for security, belonged to Abdi, a high official of King Hosea, the last king of the northern kingdom of Israel before it was conquered by the Assyrian Empire in 721 B.C.

Asahiah, servant of King Josiah: Another large seal on red limestone was found bearing the inscription "Belonging to Asayahu, servant of the king”. The name ‘Asaiah’ is a short form of the name Asayahu, occuring twice in the Old Testament. "Asaiah a servant of the king's" 2 Chronicles 34:20 and  "Asahiah a servant of the king's."… 2 Kings 22:12.  It is possible that this seal was owned by "Asaiah, the servant of the king" a high court official who was sent by King Josiah to carefully examine the scroll of the lost Book of Deuteronomy that was found in the Temple by the High Priest Hilkiah in approximately 622 B.C.

The decree of Cyrus the great: Explorers in Iraq in the last century found the ancient inscribed clay cylinder bearing the actual decree of King Cyrus of Persia allowing the various captured natives of many different nations to return freely to their ancient homelands.

The decree of King Cyrus began with these words, "I am Cyrus, king of the world, great king." After describing his conquests and deeds, the cylinder inscription reads, "I gathered all their former inhabitants and returned to them their habitations."

    "Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying, Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, The Lord God of heaven hath given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and he hath charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Who is there among you of all his people? His God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and build the house of the Lord God of Israel, he is the God, which is in Jerusalem" (Ezra 1:1-3).

 

Daniel 5...

{29} Then Belshazzar gave the command, and they clothed Daniel with purple and put a chain of gold around his neck, and made a proclamation concerning him that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom. {30} That very night Belshazzar, king of the Chaldeans, was slain.

One striking example of Biblical accuracy is Daniel's record that Belshazzar was reigning when Babylon fell to the Medo-Persians in 539BC. Yet Babylonian king lists recorded Nabonidus as the final ruler of Babylon. Even Herodotus, a famous Greek historian (c484-425BC), does not mention Belshazzar. Historians therefore judged Daniel to be in error. However, two inscriptions, now in the British Museum in London, set the record straight. One records that Nabonidus spent the later years of his reign at Tema, an Arabian oasis. The second relates a prayer of Nabonidus for his son Belshazzar. So Belshazzar was in fact the acting monarch, reigning in place of his absent father. It also explains why Daniel was offered the third highest place in the kingdom (vv7,29) - Belshazzar himself was only the second! This stunning verification of the accuracy of Daniel is just one example from hundreds of other discoveries that have confirmed Scripture.

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