Category: Ancient Cilvilizations and Giants

Archaeologists Make ‘Mind Blowing’ Discovery Of The Biblical City Of Corinth Intact And Underwater

The Greek city of Corinth, which was rebuilt in 44 BC by Roman Emperor Julius Caesar, holds major significance for Christians. Jesus’s disciple Paul is said to have visited there and wrote two letters about his time in Corinth – featured in the New Testament.

by Geoffrey Grider December 17, 2017

ARCHAEOLOGISTS have uncovered “mind-blowing” architecture almost perfectly intact from the ancient Biblical city of Corinth – despite being wiped out by a devastating earthquake 1,400 years ago.

“Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia: Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Corinthians 1:1,2 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: During the 2016 primaries, this ancient city came on the secular radar when then-candidate Donald Trump famously mispronounced Paul’s second letter to the church at Corinth by calling it “two Corinthians“. This week, however, Corinth is back on the radar for a much different reason. Archaeologists have made the fantastic discovery of the Biblical city that disappeared from view some 1,400 years ago after a devastating earthquake. Unlike the mythical cities mentioned in the book of Mormon, cities mentioned in the Bible keep popping up more and more as we get closer to the start of the last days. But I’m sure that’s just a coincidence (rolling my eyes).

The Greek city of Corinth, which was rebuilt in 44 BC by Roman Emperor Julius Caesar, holds major significance for Christians. Jesus’s disciple Paul is said to have visited there and wrote two letters about his time in Corinth – featured in the New Testament.

Just days ago, another group of archaeologists in Italy were amazed to discover the historic resort of Baiae in perfect condition. And new underwater excavations of Corinth’s harbour at the port of Lechaion have discovered wooden foundations preserved so well that they look new.

Roman artefacts including fishing lines and hooks, wooden pulleys and ceramics from Tunisia and Turkey were also found. Experts also think they have found an ancient lighthouse – depicted on coins from that time – and another monument.

The giant earthquake that hit the region caused huge layers of sediment to cover the artefacts and allowed them to barely be touched by decay, despite their age.

Bjørn Lovén, director of the Leichaion Harbour Project (LHP) which is responsible for the excavations, said: “For almost two decades I have been hunting for the perfect archaeological context where all the organic material normally not found on land is preserved.

“The potential for more unique discoveries is mind-blowing.”

Corinth officials built the harbour towns of Lechaion and Kenchreai to take advantage of its two-mile distance from the sea in Greece.

The pair of harbours connected the ancient city to a host of Mediterranean trade networks and helped it become one of the most powerful and wealthy cities in the region.

The project also found vast blocks weighing up to five-tons, which were used to separate basins within the port. Boffins hope to use the research to find out just how much Lechaion changed at different time periods throughout history.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8907

Ancient pagan ‘gods’ reappearing around U.S., world

1st Baal, now war goddess Athena as ‘occult is soaring in popularity’

Published: 17 hours ago

They’re doing it again!

The same group that recreated the Roman triumphal arch that once welcomed travelers to the Temple of Baal is now honoring another pagan deity.

The United Arab Emirates, the Italian mission to the United Nations and the Institute for Digital Archeology have re-created a statue of the goddess Athena which once stood in Palmyra, according to Breaking Israel News.

Though Athena was venerated as a goddess of reason, she was also known as “Athena Promachos,” a war goddess, and the re-created statue features her holding a spear. The exhibit, titled “The Spirit In the Stone,” is being hosted at the United Nations headquarters in New York City.

It’s another move by globalist organizations to honor pagan deities, months after the reconstructed “Arch of Baal” went on a world tour, including being placed outside the G7 meeting of the world’s industrialized nations.

“Most people today don’t realize how much of a hold ancient pagan beliefs, practices and images still have on their lives,” said Joseph Farah, author of “The Restitution of All Things: Israel, Christians and the End of the Age.” “In fact, pagan values and traditions have never left us. Even Jews and Christians are impacted by them. And they are not innocent because the gods of paganism are actually demons, according to the Bible. It’s not something to be played with.

“The question confronting us right now is: Why would the United Nations be involved in resurrecting these occult images and icons of the past? Do they not understand what this represents – the false gods of child sacrifice and all kinds of abominations and perversions?”

Joe Kovacs, author of “Shocked By The Bible 2,” says the whole sad spectacle is part of an old story.

“The promotion of pagan gods is certainly nothing new, and it again shows we’re all living in what I call ‘Opposite World,’” he explained. “It’s a world where most people do the very opposite action of what God has instructed. Our Creator tells us to have no other gods but Him, but folks do the opposite, honoring false gods.

“The Bible says Solomon, one of the wisest men who ever lived, built shrines to pagan gods such as Molech, a pagan god to whom people would burn their children alive in fires. It’s just sickening. Even God-fearing Christians today don’t realize they’re doing the very opposite of God’s instructions when they decorate trees with silver and gold and stand them up in their homes and churches every December. God personally says in the tenth chapter of Jeremiah not to do that precise heathen custom, and yet people have been tricked into decorating trees with all sorts of silver tinsel, gold garland and hanging ornaments, and they have no scriptural basis for it. For those interested in eternal life, we need to wake up and start obeying the instructions of our Maker, and stop all this pagan worthlessness.”

Messianic rabbi Jonathan Cahn, best known for his New York Times bestseller “The Harbinger,” believes this strange revival in the promotion of pagan gods has deep theological significance.

He noted Athena was associated with the Semitic mother goddess Asherah, whose shrines God commands to be destroyed in Deuteronomy 12. Cahn also claimed the goddess was sometimes merged with Ashtoreth, the consort of Baal in some traditions. Thus, there is a relationship between the new statue being displayed at the U.N. and the sinister arch which was displayed all over the world

“The reappearance of the gods is an amazing phenomenon,” he said. “Not long ago, the image of the Hindu god of destruction, Kali, appeared on the Empire State building. Then the Arch of the Temple of the god Baal was built in New York City. Recently, a massive idol of the god Shiva was displayed on the Washington Mall along with that of a seven-headed dragon. And now the idol of Athena appears in the United Nations.

“The mystery of ‘The Paradigm’ and ‘The Harbinger’ is that what transpired in the last days of ancient Israel before its judgment is now manifesting before our eyes. We are replaying an ancient judgment cycle. One of the manifestations that took place in ancient Israel before its destruction was the appearance throughout the land of the gods, their idols, their altars, their images. That the images of the gods are now manifesting throughout America is an ominous sign. We are replaying the judgment drama.

“When Israel turned away from God, it turned to false gods and idols. So when a nation that has once known God turns away from Him, it always turns to other gods. It may not call them gods or idols, but the reality is the same. America was founded on the word of God. And inasmuch as it followed the ways of God, it has been blessed above any other nation in the modern world. But inasmuch as it has turned from its God and His ways, it has turned to other gods and idols. And unless it turns back, unless it sees revival, it will progress to judgment.”

Pastor Bill Cloud, author of “Esau Rising,” also noted the significance of the relationship between Baal and the pagan goddess now being honored.

“I find it interesting that this latest reconstruction is of a goddess that was often linked with Baal in the Scriptures,” he said. “Most notably, this connection is seen in the confrontation Elijah had with the prophets of Baal and Ashteroth on Mount Carmel. It was there that Elijah challenged the nation to decide who they were going to serve – Baal or the God of Israel. I would suggest that the same ultimatum is being delivered to America.

“Who are you going to serve? I also found it interesting that observers are noting that where Christianity is receding, paganism is growing. This actually reflects a very important biblical principle. When a person, family or nation is devoid of the presence of God, another presence – an evil and oppressive spirit – will fill that void.

“In the Gospels, Messiah spoke of what happens when an evil spirit goes out of a man who does not allow himself to be filled with Presence of God. The unclean spirit will eventually seek to reinhabit that empty ‘house,’ bringing with him seven other spirits more wicked than he is. I fear that if we, as a nation, do not take advantage of the reprieve we have been granted – and by that I mean if we do not experience a spiritual renewal, these kinds of spirits and entities will become prevalent in our society.”

Some pastors also see last-days significance in how images of paganism and the demonic seem to be constantly promoted. Pastor Carl Gallups, who examines how prophecy is lining up with current events in his book “When The Lion Roars,” calls the Athena statue “prophetically ominous.”

“The Bible warns us that in the days before the return of Christ, there would be an unprecedented demonic outpouring,” Gallups told WND. “We are the first generation to live in the days of instantaneous communication and information technologies connecting the entire globe. The demonic have a stage like never before. And now the ‘gods’ are parading out their images, manipulating and using human agents to do so. The ‘gods’ are behind the ‘thrones’ of earthly powers. Satan is furious, he knows his time is short, as Revelation 12 says.”

Gallups warns Christians not to dismiss the appearance of these pagan symbols as simply happenstance or as a tribute to history.

“There’s no doubt in my mind that there is a demonic agenda behind the currents of what we are observing in the political earthly realm. Some might claim that it is just ‘historical recognition’ of these ‘artifacts.’ But the truth is that the first two commandments of God’s Word forbid humanity from doing such a thing – even though fallen man has persisted in the practice anyway. Today, for the first time in human history, they can ‘worship’ the idols of the ‘gods’ and the whole planet can see it and participate in it at the same time.”

Gallups says the statue is just another example in what has become a torrent of last-days signs.

“This is truly prophetic,” he said. “With Jerusalem having been just recognized as the capital of Israel, the ramping up of even more demonic outpouring will not surprise me in the least. We are living in the most prophetic times since the first coming of Jesus Christ. Sadly, so much of today’s church, especially in the United States, is completely missing what is happening right before our eyes.”

Jan Markell of Olive Tree Ministries concurred, arguing even secular organizations are toying with demonic forces when they create tributes to paganism.

“These outfits are basically secular and perhaps don’t even understand the concept of pagan deities,” she observed. “There is likely more of a money motive, but there is also a greater ‘last days’ zeal for dark things, driven by the prince of darkness known as Satan.

“I believe the ‘god of this age’ – Satan – is behind the promotion and spread of paganism. He is making inroads wherever he can. The occult is soaring in popularity.”

The solution to the rising prominence of the occult, argues Markell, should be a new openness to discussing topics such as paganism and the paranormal in churches.

“Most Christians are sadly not informed about occult, paranormal and pagan concepts and ideas,” she said. “The pulpits today do not speak of this as such topics will not fill pews and offering plates. Many pastors do not wish to present anything but soft issues to make their people feel good. How does the average Christian learn of this unless they are plugged into solid news outlets and ministries telling the truth, since most churches won’t?”

And as paganism is increasingly promoted by some of the most powerful organizations in the world, Markell says the time for education and action is now. “There could be dreadful consequences if they don’t become more aware,” she warns.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8899

Have Sodom and Gomorrah been found?

Archaeologist calls discovery near Dead Sea a ‘no-brainer’

Published: 18 hours ago

Is the Bible’s account of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah just a myth?

Not likely, says an archaeologist who believes, following 12 years of sifting sand near the Dead Sea in Jordan, that he has found the ruins of the largest twin cities in the area, one that fits all the criteria of the Bible account.

Steven Collins, a professor of biblical studies and apologetics at Trinity Southwest University, says a “monstrous” site in Tall el-Hammam in the southern Jordan Valley, which lies eight miles northeast of the Dead Sea, perfectly matches the biblical descriptions of the “city of sin,” destroyed in a day by fire and brimstone.

Collins began exploring the rubble in 2005 and eventually concluded that it is indeed the site inhabited by Lot who was saved by Abraham from judgment of the dominant city-state of the era.

“When we explored the area, the choice of Tall el-Hammam as the site of Sodom was virtually a no-brainer since it was at least five to 10 times larger than all the other Bronze Age sites in the entire region.”

The site is a large mound, or tel, that he believes represents the ruins of the two cities. The team of researchers has since found high and thick defensive walls, gates, towers, plazas and ramparts as well as a palace in the upper city.

As one would expect, life in the city appears to have come to a sudden halt near the end of the Middle Bronze Age period before being abandoned for 700 years.

“Tall el-Hammam seemed to match every Sodom criterion demanded by the text,” said Collins.

Based on the excavated site, despite the heavily fortified defensive capabilities, the city seems to have come to a sudden, inexplicable end – just as the Genesis account in the Bible says.

For millennia, the ancient cities have been used as metaphors for vice and homosexuality.

Collins said the city was likely abandoned after an earthquake, while other experts suggested an asteroid may have been to blame.

In 2008, mysterious circular clay tablets were identified as a witness’ account of an asteroid that destroyed the cities. Two rocket scientists – Alan Bond and Mark Hempsell, who spent eight years trying to solve the mystery – believe that the tablet’s symbols give a detailed account of how a mile-long asteroid hit the region, causing thousands of deaths and devastating an area of more than 386,000 square miles. The impact, equivalent to more than 1,000 tons of TNT exploding, would have created one of the world’s biggest-ever landslides.

The clay tablet, called the Planisphere, was discovered by the Victorian archaeologist Henry Layard in the remains of the library of the Royal Palace at Nineveh.

The duo used computers to recreate the night sky thousands of years ago and pinpointed the sighting described on the tablet by a Sumerian astrologer, pinpointing the likely date to before dawn June 29 in the year 3,123 B.C.

What does the Bible say about Sodom and Gomorrah? There are references in Genesis and the New Testament as well.

Genesis 19 is a detailed account of two angels who visited the city in an effort to save Lot and his family and were confronted by a gang threatening to sexually assault them. The angels had been dispatched by God at the urging of Abraham, Lot’s uncle.

The angels gathered Lot’s family and took them out of the city, saying: “For we will destroy this place, because the cry of them is waxen great before the face of the Lord; and the Lord hath sent us to destroy it.”

The angels cautioned Lot’s family not to look back once they had been safely removed from the cities.

“Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven,” it says in Genesis 19:24-26. “25 And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.”

Genesis 13:13 explains that the people of Sodom “were wicked and sinners before the Lord exceedingly.”

The prophets Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Amos and Zephaniah all refer to the judgment of Sodom and Gomorrah.

Jesus referred to Sodom and Gomorrah in Matthew 10, explaining to His disciples that when they visited towns to share the good news and met resistance to shake the dust off their feet before leaving:

“Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment, than for that city,” it says in verse 15.

Jesus is also quoted in Matthew 11:23 as pronouncing judgment on the Galilee town of Capernaum with a reference to Sodom. The ruins of Capernaum have since been excavated and it remains a popular tourist site today.

2 Peter 2:6 quotes the apostle as saying the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes remained as an example to “those that should live ungodly” in his day.

Likewise, Jude 7:7 says: “Even as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8856

Egyptologists Discover Pits Filled With Giant Severed Hands in “Joseph’s Palace”

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz November 14, 2017 , 1:30 pm

“David gave orders to the young men, who killed them; they cut off their hands and feet and hung them up by the pool in Chevron. And they took the head of Ish-boshet and buried it in the grave of Avner at Chevron.” II Samuel 4:12 (The Israel Bible™)

The pit of severed hands uncovered at Avaris, Egypt. (Australian Archaeological Institute/Excavation Report)

A creepy find by egyptologists of a pit full of ancient severed hands confirms a theory about a disturbing ancient Egyptian practice. The find connects fleetingly with the Bible, appearing in what some believe to be the throne room of Biblical Joseph.

Egyptologists discovered 16 severed hands in the grounds surrounding buried in four pits in an ancient palace in Avaris, Egypt. The scientists estimated the hands had been separated from their rightful owners approximately 3,600 years ago. All were right hands and remarkably large.

The find was indeed gruesome but not entirely surprising for the egyptologists, as it confirmed their belief that soldiers would cut off the hands of defeated enemies and present them to noblemen in return for a gold bounty. Hieroglyphics have been discovered depicting this practice.

“You deprive him of his power eternally,” head archaeologist Austrian Manfred Bietak explained of the practice in an interview with Archaeology News Network . “Our evidence is the earliest evidence and the only physical evidence at all. Each pit represents a ceremony.”

“Most of the hands are quite large and some of them are very large,” Bietak told LiveScience.

Two of the pits, each containing one hand, are in what researchers believe is a throne room of a palace at Avaris.

According to Bietak, the palace is believed to have belonged to King Khayan of the Hyksos, a foreign semitic-speaking nation that invaded Egypt in 1650 BCE and ruled for a short time. It is believed the Hyksos originated in Canaan or Syria.

There are other theories explaining the origin of the Hyksos and the palace discovered at Avaris. In his documentary Patterns of Evidence, Tim Mahoney suggested that the palace may have belonged to Biblical Joseph and that Avaris was the home of the Hebrews during their sojourn in Egypt.

Mahoney bases his claim on several factors, including the discovery on the grounds of the palace of 12 graves for distinguished personages, one marked by a large statue depicting a yellow-skinned royal leader.

Though the discovery of the severed hands is disturbing, the practice is actually mentioned in the Bible.

David gave orders to the young men, who killed them; they cut off their hands and feet and hung them up by the pool in Chevron. And they took the head of Ish-boshet and buried it in the grave of Avner at Chevron. II Samuel 4:12

David Rohl, an egyptologist who worked with Mahoney on Patterns of Evidence, did not believe the pits containing the hands concerned his theory of the palace in Avaris belonging to Joseph.

“These were found in the level associated with the immediate post Hyksos expulsion, which would probably mean that these were the severed ands of either Hyksos soldiers or mercenaries in the Egyptian army who had perhaps revolted,” Rohl told Breaking Israel News, emphasizing that he did not have enough data to offer more than an educated guess.

“If I were to bet on it, I would say that they are most probably part of the ‘hand count’ of Ahmose’s victory at Sharuhen to determine how many of the enemy were killed in the battle. So, having awarded Egyptian soldiers for the number of individual kills they had made, and paid for in gold, they would bury the hands in a mass grave.”

“This is too late to have anything to do with the Israelites in Egypt, in my opinion,” Rohl said.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8831

Are ‘Mitochondrial Eve’ and ‘Y-Chromosomal Adam’ Science’s Confirmation of Creation?

Could have told them!

By Yehezkel Laing November 10, 2017 , 7:30 am

“The man named his wife Chava, because she was the mother of all the living.” Genesis 3:20 (The Israel Bible™)

Following the recent trend of congruence between science and Bible in different fields, fresh genetic research suggests that all females are descended from a single female and all males from a single male – corresponding with the Biblical account of Adam and Eve.

For many years the multiregional hypothesis, suggesting multiple origins for humanity, was predominant in genetic research. But new studies suggest that all of humanity has a common origin.

“The Torah has always claimed one common ancestor to all humanity as well as creation ex-nilo,” Rabbi Avraham Arieh Trugman told Breaking Israel News in response to the finding. “Recent discoveries in these fields seem to confirm these truths.”

The theory was first developed in 1987, when leading science journal Nature published a study investigating humanity’s origins. The study researched mitochondrial DNA, which is passed down from mother to both daughter and son. Because mitochondrial DNA is only passed on by the mother and never the father, it reveals maternal lineage.

Knowing this, the researchers were able to determine that every human being alive today can trace their ancestry back to a single woman now referred to as “Mitochondrial Eve.”  The original research placed Eve somewhere in East Africa between 140,000 and 200,000 years ago. More recent research suggests she may have lived less than 100,000 years ago.

The study was quickly attacked by other researchers, but subsequent studies confirmed the original findings and the theory is now generally accepted in the scientific community.

Professor Karl Skorecki, an expert on DNA and the discoverer of the “Cohen Gene”, which identifies members of the Jewish priestly caste through genetic testing, explained to Breaking Israel News  how the findings harmonize with the Biblical account.

“Analysis of mitochondrial DNA of all contemporary humans sampled today indicates that all of the different variations in the sequence of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) trace back, or converge to an original sequence in a given woman,” he explained.

“That woman, Mitochondrial Eve, transmitted her mtDNA sequence to her offspring, and over generations slight variations in sequence occurred and accumulated, leading to the diversity of existent sequences in men and women populating the earth today.”

Professor Skorecki said that while the findings confirm a single mother to all humanity, they do not suggest she was the only woman of her time. But this, he pointed out, is harmonious with the Bible, which identifies other human populations at the time of Eve.

Ancestral Adam was found in 1995, when a separate study on male ancestry examined the Y-chromosome, passed directly from father to son. Science published the results of a study in which a segment of the Y-chromosome from 38 men from different ethnic groups were analyzed for variation.

Their conclusion was that every man alive today actually descended from a single man whom scientists now refer to as “Y-Chromosomal Adam.”

“The last fifty years of science, especially in the fields of cosmology and quantum physics, have brought Torah and science together as never before,” Rabbi Trugman noted. “Perhaps now the same will occur within anthropology and Torah.”

“Although the Torah is not a science, history, anthropology, philosophy, or cosmology book in the common sense, it is actually all of these and much more,” he added.

The first studies concluded that “Eve” lived much later than “Adam” – some 140,000 years later. But recent studies indicate that Mitochondrial Eve and Y-Chromosomal Adam may indeed have lived around the same time.

End-times expert Rabbi Pinchas Winston took the comparison even further than confirming the Biblical account, explaining how he sees the confluence between the scientific view of Eve and the Biblical account as a signal of redemption.

“During the exile there was great Hester Panim – a hiding of God’s face. As a result the Bible became relegated to the back of man’s consciousness,” he said. “At the same time, science at first seemed to diverge from religion.

“But since the Torah is the basic fabric of reality it cannot be hidden forever. As the redemption moves forward and the Jews return home, the Bible is coming back to the forefront of man’s consciousness. Along with this we see a growing harmony between science and the Bible. We have even gotten the point where science is now borrowing concepts from the Bible – such as with Mitochondrial Eve.

 

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8826

Does New Evidence of Ancient Desert Structures Strengthen ‘Sinai in Saudi Arabia’ Theory of Exodus?

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz November 8, 2017 , 12:30 pm

“For the Israelites had traveled in the wilderness forty years, until the entire nation—the men of military age who had left Egypt—had perished; because they had not obeyed Hashem.” Joshua 5:6 (The Israel Bible™)

The mysterious structures are visible from above in the Saudi Arabian desert. (Google Earth)

An archaeologist using Google Earth imagery to investigate areas of the Saudi Arabian desert revealed evidence of structures not visible from ground level that some believe are signs the Children of Israel strayed far from the Sinai after leaving Egypt.

Dr. David Kennedy, an archaeologist at the University of Western Australia, has been flying over the lava fields in the Jordan desert for the last 40 years, studying remains of structures visible only from the air. He long suspected many more of these existed in the Saudi Arabian desert but government restrictions prevented him from conducting aerial searches.

“We tend to think of Saudi Arabia as desert, but in practice there’s a huge archaeological treasure trove out there and it needs to be identified and mapped,” Dr. Kennedy said. “You can’t see them very well from the ground level, but once you get up a few hundred feet, or with a satellite even higher, they stand out beautifully.”

Dr. Kennedy believes these 400 or so structures he refers to as “gates” may have been built by nomadic tribes at least 2,000 years ago and maybe as far back as 9,000 years ago.

Patterns of Evidence, a website that investigates archaeology in a Biblical context, considered whether this new find could be brought as proof for the theory that the Children of Israel spent some time in the Saudi Arabian desert after leaving Egypt. This theory also maintains that Mount Sinai is located in located in northwest Saudi Arabia, which was the ancient land of Midian where Moses lived after fleeing Egypt.

Though neither Dr. Kennedy nor Dr. Al-Saeed suggested any possible connection between the discovery and the Biblical Exodus, Patterns of Evidence noted that there has been conjecture from other sources that these structures were made by the Children of Israel in their 40-year desert sojourn. In fact, the exact route of the Exodus and the location of Mount Sinai is the focus of an ongoing debate among scholars.

One theory is that the 40-year wandering did pass through Saudi Arabia and Mount Sinai is there, possibly a mountain called Jebel al-Lawz (mountain of almonds) or Jabal Maqla (burnt mountain), one of the tallest mountains in the Arabian peninsula and notable for its blackened peak, both located in northwestern Saudi Arabia on the border with Jordan. Access to these mountains is restricted by the government and it is forbidden to photograph them.

The theory is based on the premise that Mount Horeb and Mount Sinai are synonymous, and Moses’ first encounter with the God of Israel was at the same location where the Children of Israel later received the Torah.

Now Moshe, tending the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian, drove the flock into the wilderness, and came to Horeb, the mountain of Hashem. Exodus 3:1

There is a dispute among Biblical scholars as to whether the two mountains are indeed one and the same. This would place Mount Sinai in Midian, i.e. the Saudi Arabian Peninsula, a premise which seems to be supported later in the Bible.

Hashem our God spoke to us at Horeb, saying: You have stayed long enough at this mountain. Deuteronomy 1:6

Flavius Josephus, a first-century Roman-Jewish scholar, wrote that Sinai “was the highest of mountains in the city of Midian”, which is just outside the town of Al Bad in northwestern Saudi Arabia, seeming to support the Saudi Arabian Sinai theory.

David Rohl, an Egyptologist who worked with Patterns of Evidence to prove an earlier timeline for the Exodus, discounted the possibility that the sites in Saudi Arabia were connected to the Israelites’ desert journey.

“The walls discovered by the archaeologist belong to the late Neolithic when the Arabian peninsula had a much wetter climate, the Neolithic Wet Phase,” Rohl told Breaking Israel News.”These are agricultural or cattle enclosures from much earlier than the time of Moses.”

As an Egyptologist, Rohl prefers a version of the Exodus that more closely resembles the Biblical narrative.

Simcha Jacobovici, an Emmy-winning investigative journalist who has made several documentaries on Biblical archaeology, also discounted any connection between the new find and the Exodus from Egypt.

“This is absolutely not connected to the Children of Israel in the Desert,” Jacobovici said unequivocally to Breaking Israel News. “I think the exit from Egypt happened precisely where the Bible says it happened, and the path did not lead to Saudi Arabia. It simply makes no sense.”

When confronted by the theory that the Exodus passed through Saudi Arabia, making the location of Mount Sinai in closer proximity to Mecca than Israel, Jacobovici responded simply, “By definition, Mount Sinai has to be in the Sinai, or it’s not Mount Sinai.”

The story behind the discovery is as compelling as the discovery itself. In 2004, Dr. Abdullah Al-Saeed, a neurologist and amateur archaeologist in Saudi Arabia, explored a lava field known as Harrat Khaybar. He noted the loose stones stacked three feet high in long straight lines but without the essential aerial views, he couldn’t understand their significance and his investigation stalled.

In 2008, Dr. Al-Saeed was viewing the same sites on updated Google Earth Images and was shocked by what he saw: clearly defined rectangular enclosures. He launched an expedition and studied the site extensively, then sent his data to Dr. Kennedy for consideration.

“The question we always discuss while investigating them is, why here? Why in this stony, frightful, rugged land?” Dr. Al-Saeed wrote in his letter to Dr. Kennedy. While Dr. Kennedy was intrigued, he could not offer an answer to his colleague’s questions.

“We would have loved to fly across into Saudi Arabia to take images. But you never get the permission,” Dr. Kennedy said in an interview with the New York Times. “And then along comes Google Earth.”

Using this readily available technology, Dr. Kennedy was able to identify 400 previously undocumented stone structures in the Saudi Arabian desert. Though the investigation into the mystery of these structures is just beginning and is hampered by political realities, the existence and quantity of these structures paints a very different picture of the region in ancient times, indicating a substantial population in a region that is now uninhabitable desert.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8819

Astronomy Study Confirms Biblical Account of Joshua’s Sun-Stopping Miracle

By Abra Forman October 31, 2017 , 12:30 pm

“Yehoshua addressed Hashem; he said in the presence of the Israelites: ‘Stand still, O sun, at Givon, O moon, in the Valley of Aijalon!’” Joshua 10:12 (The Israel Bible™)

The Biblical patriarch Joshua ‘stopped the sun’ on October 30, 1207 BCE by way of a solar eclipse that may have been the first recorded in history, Cambridge researchers announced Monday.

In a paper published in the scientific journal Astronomy and Geophysics earlier this month, researchers from England’s Cambridge University confirmed a theory first suggested by Ben Gurion University researchers last January: that Joshua’s miraculous ‘stopping of the sun’ during battle to allow the Israelites more time to defeat their enemies was actually an annular solar eclipse.

They even pinpointed the exact date – the afternoon of October 30, precisely 3,224 years ago.

In the Biblical account, Joshua led the Israelites into battle with the armies of five kings in order to help the besieged Gibeonites, with whom they had signed a pact. As the Israelites began to gain the upper hand, Joshua prayed for the sun and the moon to stand still in order to complete the defeat. His prayers were answered.

And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, until the nation had avenged themselves of their enemies. Is not this written in the book of Jashar? And the sun stayed in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day. Joshua 10:13

The Cambridge researchers understood this passage as an important historical account.

“If these words are describing a real observation, then a major astronomical event was being reported,” said paper co-author Professor Sir Colin Humphreys from the University of Cambridge’s Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy. “The question for us to figure out is what the text actually means.”

The British researchers used the original Hebrew Bible to better understand the exact connotations of the verse.

“Modern English translations, which follow the King James translation of 1611, usually interpret this text to mean that the sun and moon stopped moving,” explained Humphreys. “But going back to the original Hebrew text, we determined that an alternative meaning could be that the sun and moon just stopped doing what they normally do: they stopped shining.

“In this context, the Hebrew words could be referring to a solar eclipse, when the moon passes between the earth and the sun, and the sun appears to stop shining.”

He added that the interpretation was supported by the fact that the Hebrew word meaning ‘stand still’ shares a root with a Babylonian word describing eclipses found in ancient astronomical texts.

While historians have long suspected that Joshua’s feat was an astronomical phenomenon, none were able to date the possible eclipse because they were only looking for total eclipses. However, Joshua’s eclipse was annular, meaning that rather than obscure the sun entirely, the moon’s passage in front of the sun was too far away to cover it completely and left a characteristic ‘ring of fire.’

With the help of the Merneptah Stele, an Egyptian artifact which independently confirms the Israelites’ presence in Canaan, historians have dated Joshua’s entry into the land to between 1500 and 1050 BCE. Using complex calculations, the researchers determined that the only annular eclipse visible from the Canaan during that period took place in October of 1207 BCE. The path of this eclipse passed directly over Canaan.

The researchers were thus able to date the exact hour of Joshua’s miraculous feat: between 3:27 PM and 4:53 PM in local time (determined by sundial).

Though there may be a scientific explanation for the Biblical miracle, this in no way refutes its divinity, Rabbi Arieh Trugman told Breaking Israel News when the Israeli research was announced early in the year.

“Despite the fact that in many different areas people want to pit science against Torah, what is much closer to the truth is that in most cases there is no conflict between science and Torah,” said Rabbi Trugman. “It is very common to find many areas in which there exists an amazing confluence of  secular knowledge and Torah wisdom.”

The Cambridge researchers also noted that should the date be accepted by general historians, it could help clarify the dates of pharaonic reigns, including that of Ramses the Great.

According to the calculations and verified with Egyptian records, the reign of the pharaoh Merneptah began in 1210 or 1209 BC, dating the reign of his father, the famous Egyptian pharaoh Ramesses the Great, to 1276–1210 BC, plus or minus one year, the researchers determined.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8796

Fabled ‘Sea People’ May Be Israel’s Biblical Arch-Nemesis the Philistines

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz October 17, 2017 , 12:30 pm

“No smith was to be found in all the land of Yisrael, for the Philistines were afraid that the Hebrews would make swords or spears.” I Samuel 13:19 (The Israel Bible™)

A 3,200-year-old text that lay undeciphered for 140 years has finally been translated, revealing details of the military campaign of the fabled Sea People and the downfall of the Hittites. Most importantly, it gives definitive clues about the true identity of Israel’s archnemesis, the Philistines.

The remarkable story behind the story began in 1978 when villagers in the village of Beyköy discovered scattered pieces of a hieroglyphic inscription that, when assembled, was over 95 feet long. At the time, the inscriptions, Luwian hieroglyphics, were indecipherable, but French archaeologist Georges Perrot made detailed copies. But after local residents used the stones to build a mosque and Perrot’s copies disappeared, it seemed that the fabled inscription was gone forever.

Then in 2012, a six-inch-thick manuscript of Perrot’s work was discovered. Dr. Eberhard Zangger, the president of the Luwian Studies Foundation, teamed with Dr. Fred Woudhuizen, a scholar near Amsterdam, who is one of only two dozen people in the world able to decipher Luwian script.

“We believe the frieze to be the only contemporary account describing the fall of the Hittite Empire,” Dr. Zangger told Breaking Israel News. In the Bible, the Hittites are descended from Het, Noah’s grandson, who settled in the land of Canaan, named for Het’s father.

Canaan begot Tzidon, his first-born, and Heth. Genesis 10:15

More important to Bible scholars is what the new findings reveal about Israel’s Biblical arch-nemesis: the Philistines. Throughout the Bible, the Philistines controlled the coastal region down to Gaza. This is confirmed by Dr. Zangger’s finding, but with significant additional details.

Some historians theorized that the Philistines were not a specific nation but a conglomeration of marauding states, but the frieze’s description contradicts this theory. The inscription describes in detail the rise of a powerful kingdom called Mira, which launched a military campaign led by Prince Muksus from Troy, now in modern Turkey.

Mira was part of a confederation that comprised ‘the Sea People’, who led a naval expedition into Syria. The Sea People worked their way down the Mediterranean coast, eventually establishing a stronghold in Ashkelon.

In the Bible, the Philistines are described as conquering the coastal region. Some historians conjecture that the term Philistine refers to a confederation of nations. Dr. Zangger admits that his knowledge of the Bible is too limited to draw conclusions, but according to his findings, the Philistines, described in the frieze as Philistia, were clearly an entity unto themselves.

“The Luwian hieroglyphics state that Mira is part of the confederation, which make up the Sea People, and also describes Philistia as being part of the Sea People, all of whom came from Western Asia Minor,” Dr. Zangger explained. “They were not a unit unto themselves but they could form a unit if needed. There were 150 separate place names, and one of them was clearly Philistia.”

Dr. Zangger noted that like the other nations in the confederation, the Philistines came from Western Asia Minor.

Much of the manuscript has yet to be translated, so there may be more remarkable revelations in the future.

“This is one of the more special works of its kind in archaeology today,” Dr. Zangger said, noting that the original inscriptions, stone and bronze, may still come to light.

The team will publish their findings in Talanta archaeological journal in December, but the discoveries are in danger of being discounted due to the source material. Dr. Zangger and Dr. Woudhuizen were, after all, working from a copy of an original that no longer exists. The manuscript’s provenance has been questioned, and it has been suggested that Mellaart used ‘imagined evidence’.

In his rebuttal to skeptics of the text’s authenticity, Dr. Woudhuizen pointed out that it would have been impossible for Mellaart to fake what is by far the longest Luwian inscription discovered to date.

“Luwian hieroglyphic was only deciphered around 1950,” he stated. “I doubt whether anybody had the expertise to produce such an inscription between 1950 and 1989. As a matter of fact, I don’t think anyone could do it even today.”

Dr. Zangger made a final observation that is a poignant lesson for students of ancient history as well as students of the Bible.

“From the text, it is evident that the political and cultural reality was much more complicated than previously thought. Of course we need simplifications to understand and talk about what happened, but we need to remember that these simplifications are not the truth. The truth is much, much larger.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8779

Biblical Seal of Solomon ‘found’ in Turkey after being lost for HUNDREDS of years … and according to legend it allows its owner speak with animals

The legendary seal, which belonged to the ancient King of Israel, is believed to give its holder the power to ‘control demons and speak with animals’

By Mark Hodge

4th October 2017, 12:24 pm

THE biblical Seal of Solomon which is said to hold supernatural powers has been found after cops swooped on a suspected tomb raider, it has been reported.

The bronze seal – which belonged to the ancient King of Israel – is said to give its wearer the power to command demons and speak to animals.

Central European News

The seal, pictured, which is believed to hold supernatural powers, has reportedly been found on a smuggler in Turkey

Getty – Contributor

The Seal of Solomon, illustrated in The Book of Ceremonial Magic published 1911, is said to hold supernatural powers

Police in Turkey’s central Amasya Province say the legendary seal ring could have been recovered after authorities detained a real-life Indiana Jones.

The priceless seal was reportedly discovered along with a collection of other ancient artefacts which were in the possession of the morally-ambiguous smuggler.

Police say 10 other antiquities were recovered including five golden tablets which had up to five pages each.

Officers also seized a golden bull figurine and a bronze charm, both with ancient Hebrew inscriptions.

Solomon’s Seal, pictured on a cigarette card in 1923, is detailed in the Bible and Arabic legend

A six-page metal tablet – thought to be a Jewish sacred text known as a “Torah” – and two metal tablets believed to be amulet holders.

Local Governor Osman Varol said the artefacts are being examined by the Amasya Museum Directorate for authentication and dating.

Authorities said one suspect is being quizzed about how he came into possession of the ancient artefacts.

Solomon was revered as a prophet in Biblical times who succeeded his father David as King of Israel.

What is the Seal of Solomon?

In the Bible, the name of God was engraved on King Solomon’s ring which enabled him to control demons.

In Arabic legend the ring was given to Solomon from heaven and was made of brass and iron.

The King was also believed to be given four jewels from angels which he set in the seal enabling him to control the four elements.

In one legend, mythical beast Asmodeus, known as the King of Demons, steals the ring and throws it into the sea.

But the seal is eventually found by a fisherman and it is then served to Solomon in a fish.

The hexagon ‘Star of David’ on the flag of Israel has its origins in 14 century depictions of the Seal of Solomon

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8773

Extremely Rare Pillar ‘From Temple Mount Itself’ Discovered Under Kotel

By Abra Forman September 28, 2017 , 10:30 am

“He then led me into the great hall. He measured the jambs, 6 amot on either side; such was the depth of each jamb.” Ezekiel 41:1 (The Israel Bible™)

In the course of excavations underneath the Western Wall plaza, a rare Second Temple-era pillar was found which researchers believe was originally part of the Temple Mount itself.

During a decade-long project to expand public facilities at the Western Wall, or Kotel, one of Jerusalem’s largest tourist attractions, workers drilled from the floor of the plaza, at ground level, down through 33 feet of Jerusalem history to the bedrock below.

The unique project enabled workers to stabilize and construct a building over an active archaeological site. Over the course of the work, several valuable ancient artifacts were uncovered, the most exciting of which may have come from the Temple Mount when the Temple was still standing.

The pillar believed to come from the Second Temple. (Abra Forman/Breaking Israel News)

Dov Rabinowitz, Director of Education at the Western Wall, said the rare pillar had been discovered as part of an 1,800-year-old Roman wall.

“We found a stone that was more ancient than the wall. They reused it for the wall,” he explained. “It’s the first pillar, the top, the head of the pillar, from the time of the Second Temple.” He noted the intricate carving and design on the stone.

“These are pillars from the Temple Mount itself, that were reused over here.”

The pillar was reused as part of an ancient Roman wall. (Abra Forman/Breaking Israel News)

Rabinowitz said the drilling process required for the construction necessarily endangered “for sure 2 percent” of any archaeological finding, but it was the price paid to uncover centuries’ worth of artifacts.

“It could be we drilled directly through a coin with the high priest’s name on it, we’ll never know about it,” he said. He compared the dig to going through a birthday cake layer by layer.

It is very rare to find artifacts from the Temple Mount, which was destroyed for the last time 2,000 years ago. The first-ever physical evidence of the site was found by the Temple Mount Sifting Project in 2016, when over 600 colored stone tile floor fragments from the courtyard of the Second Temple were reconstructed by archaeologists.

While still under construction, the Kotel excavation site was opened to journalists during the week of Slichot, special prayers for repentance that Jews recite on the ten days between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur. Tens of thousands of Jews gather at the Kotel each night for the service.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=8739