News Letter 5854-038
The 2nd Year of the 4th Sabbatical Cycle
The 23rd year of the 120th Jubilee Cycle
The 14th day of the 10th month 5854 years after the creation of Adam
The 10th Month in the Second year of the Fourth Sabbatical Cycle
The 4th Sabbatical Cycle after the 119th Jubilee Cycle
The Sabbatical Cycle of Sword, Famines, and Pestilence
December 22, 2018
Shabbat Shalom to the Royal Family of Yehovah,
The Embattled Pastors
Barna research tells us that 75 churches each week close their doors in the USA. Another research tells us that 1500 Pastors leave the work each month due to moral failure, burn out and the contention that is now in their churches. And 2.7 Million people walk away from their churches each year.
I would be ecstatic to see them walking away from the false teaching and then beginning to keep the Torah but sadly we do not have 2.7 Million taking up the Torah each year to counter this wave.
These numbers are staggering. The average number of attendees per church is 89 people and this has forced many of these pastors to take on a full or part-time job outside of their church. These numbers represent the churches in the USA. The numbers outside the USA, around the world, are staggeringly higher. Is it any wonder that these churches close their doors because the Pastors are burned out, stressed out and have a great lack of time to pray, to study, to organize their thoughts or prepare for the weekly sermon. They are also closing the doors due to the lack of time they have to spend with their family due to the demands of those they serve and their jobs outside the ministry. They are forced to look outside the church for jobs which demands much of their time, which is due to the lack of finances.
All of these factors play on every pastor and church group as they try to reach their community with the Gospel. This does affect the pastor’s faith, their marriage and their calling.
Another poll conducted looking at the number of hours a pastor spends preparing his sermon showed that those who did not have to work outside the church and were pastors full time spend an average of 13 hours or more on the weekly Sermon. Those who held down a full time or part time job outside the church spent on average less than 12 hours each week on the weekly Sermon. This was due to the fact that he has less time to study and prepare for the upcoming weekly sermon.
This now brings us to Sightedmoon.com. At first back in 2005, it was just me trying to get this message out by myself by word of mouth speaking to various groups. Then Richard O’Donnell helped me to set up the first website in 2006 and we grew. I began to write weekly for the web site beginning in 2007 and did the prophecy club speaking tour in 2008. The message of the Sabbatical and Jubilee years was growing slowly by word of mouth. It was also meeting resistance from the Messianic leadership. 2010, 2013, 2014 we published books to help explain this teaching to more and in more detail and again we grew.
During this time Laura Skeahan became my assistant helping to organize a speaking engagement in Texas and after a few years the stress of this work and of her life was too much, and then Judith Dennis stepped in and she organized with 3 other ladies the event in 2013 where we recorded the video teachings about the Sabbatical and Jubilee years. Richard was now closing down all the accounts except Sightedmoon.com and then James Relf came along at this time as well and saved sightedmoon.com from an extortion of our website and our email list by others we had just met in 2013. James has been with me since 2013. After a while, then Judith left due to the stress and Pauline Benjes took over and recently Pauline has stepped back and Jan Sytsma has stepped in to help. In recent years Mike, who does not want to be known, has also stepped up to help contribute to this work.
Yehovah has provided the money and the people needed at the time it was needed most.
Then in 2015 Aike Messias and Telesphore Ntashimikiro both learned of the Sabbatical and Jubilee teachings and began to run with it in their respective countries. Our message reached the leadership of both these two countries and we spoke on TV and radios in both of them. These two men together with our help have done outreaches across their own country and into a number of others teaching the message of the Sabbatical years.
There have been many times that I wanted to pack it in and close the door. I had a company with employees and have sold all of that a few years ago. I continue to work a full-time job and strive to spend time with my wife and family. I also spend more than 13 hours each week working on the next message and answering emails and talking on the phone to those with problems or questions. I am not a pastor. But the stress of this job is there just as the survey reveals.
After beating James up at our last meeting he has finally begun to share his teachings with us and they will soon be published here. These are those things he has taught in Africa to the churches he has spoken with there and these are the messages he will speak to them about when he returns once we have raised the needed income. James has been my sounding board since 2013 when we met in Israel and has become my trusted friend in this walk and knows me unlike anyone else. And he has quit on me many times and has wanted to quit many others.
The demands of this work are huge and the responsibility is unlike anything else we have done. As you can see quite easily from the comments that are posted, we are criticized for what we try to do and are attacked by both those who do not keep Torah and those who do. I have had death threats in the past that were serious enough to call the police and last week got my first bomb threat. But it was not credible. We ask that you continue to pray for each of those people who help make this work happen. We look forward to doing this work full time and at the same time, we wonder how it will come about if it ever does. Please do pray Yehovah to bless each of us and guides us all to do His work where He wants it done.
Nehemiah 13:10 I also found out that the portions of the Levites had not been given to them, so that the Levites and the singers, who did the work, had fled each to his field. So I confronted the officials and said, “Why is the house of God forsaken?” And I gathered them together and set them in their stations. Then all Judah brought the tithe of the grain, wine, and oil into the storehouses. And I appointed as treasurers over the storehouses Shelemiah the priest, Zadok the scribe, and Pedaiah of the Levites, and as their assistant Hanan the son of Zaccur, son of Mattaniah, for they were considered reliable, and their duty was to distribute to their brothers. Remember me, O my God, concerning this, and do not wipe out my good deeds that I have done for the house of my God and for his service.
The Battle of the Kings
We have now covered the history of the Temple Mount. We had to do that in order to show you that the Temple of Yehovah was never built there. I know it does get confusing with many speaking with great authority and without all the facts. So we have walked you through all that history step by step, so you could think about it and then make your own decision.
If all that I have shared with you about the Temple Mount is true then this now leaves us with the question, where is the Temple that Solomon built?
Here is how the modern artists depict Jerusalem in the days of the Jebusites. In this picture, they are calling what the signs in Jerusalem say to be the walls that Nehemiah rebuilt, which in our last article that we were also told that this was the Milo area filled in by Solomon, but they are calling it a Jebusite stone structure.
This is that same “Jebusite Stone Structure which in our last article they were claiming it was part of the Milo. The next picture shows you what it looked like when they first found it.
And today this now looks like this when you go through the City of David tour of the excavations.
Our last Newsletter in this series titled The Biyrah of The Bayith-The Rocks Are Crying Out in the comments we had a video added there of an interview with Joseph Good discrediting the things we have been putting forward. This is good and Iron sharpens iron. In the video Mr. Good stated that recent claims say the Akra was found in the Givati parking lot excavations. And that this Acra was part of the fortifications that was connected to the Stepped Stone structure above.
Here are the pictures from what they are claiming to be the Acra. The First one is looking North towards the Temple Mount. You can see the Al Aqsa Mosque at the top.
This picture above and the next picture are both taken looking towards the north.
This following picture is looking towards the west but in this one, you can see the Glacis which is the stone slope that butts up to the fortified wall to prevent the enemy from placing ladders there to climb the wall.
And here is one more picture showing the Glacis before they continued to excavate. This one is looking towards the east if I am not mistaken.
Now stop and think here for a moment. The City of David, in the following picture, is to the right-hand side of this rampart that is to protect the tower and is surrounded by steep hills that you cannot attack from. This rampart does not look very steep and it it not going to stop anyone from attacking. But…. You can only attack from the North or the left-hand side of this picture and the Glacis is sloping towards the side that they would attack from. The Glacis in this picture is showing that it is protecting from an attack from the City of David. The archaeologists are very respected people and I have the highest regards for them and their expertise. But sometimes they are trying to find things to fit their theory. And I do not see this as an Acra. I do not know what it is. But if it is an Acra then it is designed the wrong way for protection from the north. Just my common sense kicking in.
And below is another artist rendition of the City of Jerusalem in Solomons day.
But to understand Jerusalem history you must, you absolutely must go back to the very beginning and then come forward with each new phase of its history in order to understand what you now see today. And this is why we have been doing these News Letters. It is so that you can understand even if you never get to go there in person.
In Genesis, we are told that Abraham was living by the Oaks of Mamre near Hebron.
Gen 13:18 So Abram moved his tent and came and settled by the oaks of Mamre, which are at Hebron, and there he built an altar to the Lord.
Hebron is the same place where David first sat as King over Israel. Only coming to Jerusalem once he captured it.
After iin Gen 14 there is this war with the four Kings from the North takes place and Lot is captured. Next is the map of the route the Kings took in their war campaign.
Gen 14:13 Then one who had escaped came and told Abram the Hebrew, who was living by the oaks of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol and of Aner. These were allies of Abram. When Abram heard that his kinsman had been taken captive, he led forth his trained men, born in his house, 318 of them, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. And he divided his forces against them by night, he and his servants, and defeated them and pursued them to Hobah, north of Damascus. Then he brought back all the possessions, and also brought back his kinsman Lot with his possessions, and the women and the people.
1 The Northern forces attacked south through the Valley of Siddim along the King’s Highway; east of the Dead Sea.
2 They initially pushed the Southern armies of the Jordan into the tar pits common to that area.
3 The North overran and plundered the cities and captured its citizens including Lot and his family. The advance continued south to establish control over the path leading to Eilat, the Red Sea and El-Paran.
4 The Mesopotamian armies turned north to continue their campaign of plunder in the region, advancing to Kadesh-Barnea.
5 This time their axis of advance was by the opposite side, the west of the Dead Sea. Abraham used all he had – his 318 servants – to fight for Lot. They begin their pursuit of the Northern Kings from the area south of Jerusalem.
6 As these marched home, they were intercepted by Abraham near Damascus by the city of Dan.
7 Abraham kept the enemy on the move through that route, continuing the attack to Hobah, north of Damascus and defeating King Chedorlaomer’s forces.
It is logical to assume that the location of this ambush was Barada Gorge, north-west of Damascus, as this is where the highways converge; the same location where, in World War I, September 1918, the famous Australian Mounted Division ambushed and destroyed the Turkish Fourth Army in retreat.
We will now read the rest of this story about Abraham.
Gen 14:17 After his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley). And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. (He was priest of God Most High.) And he blessed him and said,
“Blessed be Abram by God Most High,
Possessor of heaven and earth;
and blessed be God Most High,
who has delivered your enemies into your hand!”
And Abram gave him a tenth of everything. And the king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the persons, but take the goods for yourself.” But Abram said to the king of Sodom, “I have lifted my hand to the Lord, God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth, that I would not take a thread or a sandal strap or anything that is yours, lest you should say, ‘I have made Abram rich.’ I will take nothing but what the young men have eaten, and the share of the men who went with me. Let Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre take their share.”
The Kings Valley, (The Valley of Shaveh) is also called the Kings Dale. This is the place where the King had his gardens that were watered by the waters that came from the Gihon Spring. Today this is also known as the Valley of Jehoshaphat which is very similar to Yehovah Shaveh. If you will recall our teaching on the Threshold Covenant found in The Red Carpet & The Door, this valley of Jehoshaphat, also called the Kidron Valley is that threshold. Just a the lambs were sacrificed on the threshold and their blood smeared on the doorposts and the lintel and collected in the bowl in the threshold, so was Yehshua sacrificed above the Kidron on the Mount of Offence.
This is where covenants were made with the sacrifice of the lamb.
The Kings Garden went from south of where the Kidron meets the Gehenna Valley and up to where the Gihon came out of the City and flowed into the Kidron. If that Garden was still there today it would look much like this next map with the modern city on it.
Abraham was standing in the Kidron Valley talking with Melchezidek.
This is the first time we have heard of the City Yeru, which is Canaanite for City, of Salem and Melchezidek is the King of Salem.
Melchizedek is an old Canaanite name meaning “My King Is [the god] Sedek” or “My King Is Righteousness” and his title, King of Salem, means “king of peace. “We are not told very much about this King. But the word for Preist is kôhên.
We read in Psalms 110 a bit about him
The LORD says to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.” The LORD sends forth from Zion your mighty scepter. Rule in the midst of your enemies! Your people will offer themselves freely on the day of your power, in holy garments; from the womb of the morning, the dew of your youth will be yours. The LORD has sworn and will not change his mind, “You are a priest forever
after the order of Melchizedek.” The Lord is at your right hand; he will shatter kings on the day of his wrath. He will execute judgment among the nations, filling them with corpses; he will shatter chiefs
over the wide earth. He will drink from the brook by the way; therefore he will lift up his head.
The order of Malki Tzedek or King of Righteousness comes down to us from where. To be a Kohen, High Priest, you had to be a son of a Kohen. Who was that? We read about a Tzedek one back in Genesis 6.
Gen 6:6 And the Lord regretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart. So the Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.
Noah and the Flood
These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God. And Noah had three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
Noah was a righteous man and found grace with Yehovah. The word Righteous is the word Tsad deek.
Abraham was 58 years old when Noah died in the year 1831 BC. Noah was 950 years old. Abraham had hidden in the house of Noah from Nimrod who sought to have him killed. You did not know that? Let’s share that story with you now.
Noah Abraham and Shem
The story of Abram and Nimrod is the age-old story of those who choose to live righteously by following Yehovah’s eternal and unchanging ways versus those who have chosen to rebel against them as did Nimrod and all his people.
Unknown to Abram this ongoing battle between good and evil started on the night of his birth. Jasher records how Terah, Abram’s father and one of the princes of Nimrod, was having a gathering in his home on the night of Abram’s birth. In attendance were “all the wise men of Nimrod (the king of Babylon) and his conjurors.”
Jasher 8:1 And it was in the night that Abram was born, that all the servants of Terah, and all the wise men of Nimrod, and his conjurors came and ate and drank in the house of Terah, and they rejoiced with him on that night.
By the time Abram was born it was late and as everyone started home they noticed a strange occurrence in the heavens.
Jasher 8:2 And when all the wise men and conjurors went out from the house of Terah, they lifted up their eyes toward heaven that night to look at the stars, and they saw, and behold one very large star came from the east and ran in the heavens, and he swallowed up the four stars from the four sides of the heavens. And all the wise men of the king and his conjurors were astonished at the sight, and the sages understood this matter, and they knew its import. And they said to each other, “This only betokens the child who has been born to Terah this night, who will grow up and be fruitful, and multiply, and possess all the earth, he and his sons for ever, and he and his seedwill slay great kings, and inherit their lands.
From that very night Nimrod, with his spirit of rebellion, began trying to kill Abram. His father had to give Nimrod another child to kill in place of Abram and then Terah had to hide Abram in a cave for the first ten years of his life.
Jasher 8:35 And Terah took Abram his son secretly, together with his mother and nurse, and he concealed them in a cave, and he brought them their provisions monthly. And Yehovah was with Abram in the cave and he grew up, and Abram was in the cave ten years, and the king and his princes, soothsayers and sages, thought that the king had killed Abram.
After the cave, Abram lived with Noah and Shem for 39 years and learned the ways of Yehovah. He never followed the statutes, judgment and laws given by Nimrod or his other elohim (lawmakers and judges).
Jasher 9:5 And when Abram came out from the cave, he went to Noah and his son Shem, and he remained with them to learn the instruction of Yehovah and His ways, and no man knew where Abram was, and Abram served Noah and Shem his son for a long time. And Abram was in Noah’s house thirty-nine years, and Abram knew Yehovah from three years old, and he went in the ways of Yehovah until the day of his death, as Noah and his son Shem had taught him; and all the sons of the earth in those days greatly transgressed against Yehovah, and they rebelled against him and they served other elohim (gods), and they forgot Yehovah who had created them in the earth; and the inhabitants of the earth made unto themselves, at that time, every man his elohim; elohim of wood and stone which could neither speak, hear, nor deliver, and the sons of men served them and they became their elohim.
At age 49 Abraham, believing he was safe, returned to Terah and his father’s house; but it had many idols in it. And sometimes, when you know the truth, it is hard to condone wickedness. So when Abram saw the idols, he made a vow before Yehovah that he would destroy them all before three days was up; which he did.
Abram and Nimrod
In his anger, Terah told Nimrod what his son had done. And when Abram was brought before Nimrod, he rebuked even Nimrod saying,
Jasher 11:55 Dost thou imagine that they [the idols] can deliver thee or do anything small or great, that thou shouldst serve them? And why wilt thou not sense the Elohim of the whole universe, who created thee and in whose power it is to kill and keep alive? 0 foolish, simple, and ignorant king, woe unto thee forever. I thought thou wouldst teach thy servants the upright way, but thou hast not done this, but hast filled the whole earth with thy sins and the sins of thy people who have followed thy ways.
Nimrod was furious with Abram and when he realized that Terah had deceived him 49 years back by giving him another child to kill, his anger turned to Terah also. But Terah is terrified and lies to save his life; he blames his son Haran for giving him the idea to substitute another child in place of Abram. Abram and Haran are then thrown into a fiery furnace while all the people of the land looked on. Haran died immediately but Abram walked in the midst of the flames for all to see. After 3 days Abraham was taken out and extolled with great honor. This may be a shadow picture of the heirs of Abraham in the last days in reverse. The wicked who were watching to see Abram destroyed will be destroyed themselves by fire and the righteous heirs of Abraham and their families will again be saved from the fire.
Jasher 12:37 And the king, princes, and inhabitants of the land, when they saw that Abram was delivered from the fire, they came and bowed down to Abram. And Abram said to them, Do not bow down to me, but bow down to the Elohim of the world who made you, and serve Him, and go in His ways for it is He who delivered me from out of this fire, and it is He who created the souls and spirits of all men, and formed man in his mother’s womb, and brought him forth into the world, and it is He who will deliver those who trust in him from all pain. And this thing seemed very wonderful in the eyes of the king and princes, that Abram was saved from the fire and that Haran was burned; and the king gave Abram many presents and he gave him his two head servants from the king’s house; the name of one was Oni and the name of the other was Eliezer. And all the kings, princes and servants gave Abram many gifts of silver and gold and pearl, and the king and his princes sent him away, and he went in peace. And Abram went forth from the king in peace, and many of the king’s servants followed him, and about three hundred men joined him. And Abram returned on that day and went to his father’s house, he and the men that followed him, and Abram served Yehovah his Elohim all the days of his life, and he walked in His ways and followed His law. And from that day forward Abram inclined the hearts of the sons of men to serve Yehovah.
This was the second time that Nimrod tried to kill Abram.
The animosity between Abram and Nimrod is a shadow picture of what we can expect in the coming last days. At Abram’s birth the stars proclaimed the destruction of rebellious Nimrod and his Babylonian kingdom.
Two years after Abram was once again delivered miraculously, this time from Nimrod’s furnace, Nimrod has a dream.
Jasher 12:47 And the king dreamed that all his troops sank in that river and died, and the king took flight with three men who were before him and he escaped. And the king looked at these men and they were clothed in princely dresses as the garments of kings, and had the appearance and majesty of kings. …
And the king was grieved at the sight, and he awoke out of his sleep and his spirit was agitated; and he felt a great terror.
After this dream, Nimrod resolves again to have Abram killed. But Terah (Abram’s father) is not about to lose another son and takes the advice of Abram, Noah and Shem and flees Babylon to save Abram’s life and possibly his own. They leave for Canaan but only get as far as Haran. It is from here that Abram leaves Haran and goes into Canaan for the second time. This is where we meet Abram, this amazing 75-year-old man of Yehovah, for the first time in Genesis.
Now Yehovah had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” So Abram departed as Yehovah had spoken to him, and Lot went with him. And Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. (Gen 12:1-4)
Within the year, because of the great wealth that both Abram and Lot possess, Abram finds that they are unable to live together because of the amount of space needed for their livestock and tents. So Lot separates from Abram and dwells in the garden-like, fruitful plains of the Jordan.
Jasher 15:42 But I pray thee separate from me, go and choose a place where thou mayest dwell with thy cattle and all belonging to thee, but keep thyself at a distance from me, thou and thy household. And be not afraid in going from me, for if any one do an injury to thee, let me know and I will avenge thy cause from him, only remove from me. And when Abram had spoken all these words to Lot, then Lot arose and lifted up his eyes toward the plain of Jordan.
But within a few years 800,000 men from the north who are led by Chedorlaomer, king of Elam and three other kings, one of which is Amraphel (aka Nimrod) the King of Shinar, come to Sodom and points south and east. On their journey south they are looting, killing and bringing more cities under Chedorlaomer’s control.
Jasher 16:2 And these four kings went up with all their camps, about eight hundred thousand men, and they went as they were, and smote every man they found in their road.
In the fourteenth year, Chedorlaomer and the kings that were with him came and attacked the Rephaim in Ashteroth Karnaim, the Zuzim in Ham, the Emim in Shaveh Kiriathaim, and the Horites in their mountain of Seir, as far as El Paran, which is by the wilderness. Then they turned back and came to En Mishpat (that is, Kadesh), and attacked all the country of the Amalekites, and the Amorites who dwelt in Hazezon Tamar. (Gen 14:5-7)
Melchizedek is Shem
We also have these notes from William F. Dankenbring
The book of Jasher, which is ancient Jewish literature apart from the Bible, dating to hundreds of years before Christ and most probably even earlier, says:
“And Adonizedek king of Jerusalem , the same was Shem, went out with his men to meet Abram and his people, with bread and wine, and they remained together in the valley of Melech. And Adonizedek blessed Abram, and Abram gave him a tenth from all that he had brought from the spoil of his enemies, for Adonizedek was a priest before God” (Jasher 16:11-12).
Shem, of course, was the first born son of Noah who held the office of high priest in the patriarchal system, long before the Levitical priesthood.
In the patriarchal age, the oldest son was the “priest” of the family, and the oldest son of the oldest son, descended from Seth, son of Adam, was the “chief priest” or “high priest” in the earth. The righteous men of God, descended from Adam, were in each generation both “king and priest” – Seth, Enosh, Cainan, Mahalalel, Jared, Enoch, Methuselah, Lamech, and Noah. The high priesthood then went to Shem, after the Flood and the death of Noah, his father. Thus Shem was a king of “righteousness” – “Melchizedek” – and a king of “peace” – “Salem,” representing the city of Jerusalem.
Says Unger’s Bible Dictionary, “In pre-Mosaic times the office of priest was occupied by the father of a family (comp. Job 1:5), or the head of a tribe for his own family or tribe. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob built altars, offered sacrifices, purified and consecrated themselves and their households (Gen.12:7; 13:18; 26:25; 33:20; 35:1,2).” (“Priest, Priesthood,” p.881).
Declares the Adam Clarke Commentary, of Melchizedek, “He had preserved in his family and among his subjects the worship of the true God, and the primitive patriarchal institutions; by these the father of every family was both king and priest, so Melchizedek, being a worshiper of the true God, was priest among the people, as well as king over them” (vol.1, page 102).
The line of patriarchs given in Genesis 5 were righteous men and leaders, kings and priests and prophets, endowed with God’s gifts to accomplish their duty as His representatives on the earth. They ruled by divine decree, but forced nobody to obey them or follow God’s ways. They were “preachers of righteousness,” but did not compel obedience. Obedience was voluntary, but each person would ultimately be judged as to whether they followed the divine laws of God and worshiped Him, or not.
They were, like Noah, “a preacher of righteousness” (II Pet.2:5).
Shem was also a “preacher of righteousness.”
Life & Death of Shem
One of the earliest NewsLetters I put out was about the life of Shem and I would very much like to include it here. But I will not. But I am going to quote my most favorite part which I have quoted from Alexander Hislop’s Two Babylon’s.
There is here, of course, all the extravagance of idolatry, as found in the Chaldean sacred books that Maimonides had consulted; but there is no reason to doubt the fact stated either as to the manner or the cause of the death of Tammuz. In this Chaldean legend, it is stated that it was by the command of a “certain king” that this ringleader in apostacy was put to death. Who could this king be, who was so determinedly opposed to the worship of the host of heaven? From what is related of the Egyptian Hercules, we get very valuable light on this subject. It is admitted by Wilkinson that the most ancient Hercules, and truly primitive one, was he who was known in Egypt as having, “by the power of the gods” * (i.e., by the SPIRIT) fought against and overcome the Giants. Now, no doubt, the title and character of Hercules were afterwards given by the Pagans to him whom they worshipped as the grand deliverer or Messiah, just as the adversaries of the Pagan divinities came to be stigmatized as the “Giants” who rebelled against Heaven. But let the reader only reflect who were the real Giants that rebelled against Heaven. They were Nimrod and his party; for the “Giants” were just the “Mighty ones,” of the opposition to the apostacy from the primitive worship? If Shem was at that time alive, as beyond question he was, who so likely as he? In exact accordance with this deduction, we find that one of the names of the primitive Hercules in Egypt was “Sem.” *
If “Shem,” then, was the primitive Hercules, who overcame the Giants, and that not by mere physical force, but by “the power of God,” or the influence of the Holy Spirit, that entirely agrees with his character; and more than that, it remarkably agrees with the Egyptian account of the death of Osiris. The Egyptians say, that the grand enemy of their god overcame him, not by open violence, but that, having entered into a conspiracy with seventy-two of the leading men of Egypt, he got him into his power, put him to death, and then cut his dead body into pieces, and sent the different parts to so many different cities throughout the country. * The real meaning of this statement will appear, if we glance at the judicial institutions of Egypt. Seventy-two was just the number of the judges, both civil and sacred, who, according to the Egyptian law, were required to determine what was to be the punishment of one guilty of so high an offence as that of Osiris, supposing this to have become a matter of judicial inquiry. In determining such a case, there were necessarily two tribunals concerned. First, there were the ordinary judges, who had power of life and death, and who amounted to thirty, * then there was, over and above, a tribunal consisting of forty-two judges, who, if Osiris was condemned to die, had to determine whether his body should be buried or no, for before burial, every one after death had to pass the ordeal of this tribunal. * As burial was refused him, both tribunals would necessarily be concerned; and thus there would be exactly seventy-two persons, under Typho the president, to condemn Osiris to die and to be cut in pieces. What, then, does the statement amount to, in regard to the conspiracy, but just to this, that the great opponent of the idolatrous system which Osiris introduced, had so convinced these judges of the enormity of the offence which he had committed, that they gave up the offender to an awful death, and to ignominy after it, as a terror to any who might afterwards tread in his steps. The cutting of the dead body in pieces, and sending the dismembered parts among the different cities, is paralleled, and its object explained, by what we read in the Bible of the cutting of the dead body of the Levite’s concubine in pieces (Judges xix. 29), and sending one of the parts to each of the twelve tribes of Israel; and the similar step taken by Saul, when he hewed the two yoke of oxen asunder, and sent them throughout all the coasts of his kingdom (1 Sam. xi.7). It is admitted by commentators that both the Levite and Saul acted on a patriarchal custom, according to which summary vengeance would be dealt to those who failed to come to the gathering that in this solemn way was summoned. This was declared in so many words by Saul, when the parts of the slaughtered oxen were sent among the tribes: “Whosoever cometh not forth after Saul and after Samuel, so shall it be done to his oxen.” In like manner, when the dismembered parts of Osiris were sent among the cities by the seventy-two “conspirators”–in other words, by the supreme judges of Egypt, it was equivalent to a solemn declaration in their name, that “whosoever should do as Osiris had done, so should it be done to him; so should he also be cut in pieces.”
When irreligion and apostasy again arose into the ascendant, this act, into which the constituted authorities who had to do with the ringleader of the apostates were led, for the putting down of the combined system of irreligion and despotism set up by Osiris or Nimrod, was naturally the object of intense abhorrence to all his sympathizers; and for his share in it the chief actor was stigmatized as Typho, or “The Evil One.” * The influence that this abhorred Typho wielded over the minds of the so-called “conspirators,” considering the physical force with which Nimrod was upheld, must have been wonderful, and goes to show, that though his deed in regard to Osiris is veiled, and himself branded by a hateful name, he was indeed none other than that primitive Hercules who overcame the Giants by “the power of God,” by the persuasive might of his Holy Spirit.
In connection with this character of Shem, the myth that makes Adonis, who is identified with Osiris, perish by the tusks of a wild boar, is easily unraveled. * The tusk of a wild boar was a symbol. In Scripture, a tusk is called “a horn;” * among many of the Classic Greeks it was regarded in the very same light. * When once it is known that a tusk is regarded as a “horn” according to the symbolism of idolatry, the meaning of the boar’s tusks, by which Adonis perished, is not far to seek. The bull’s horns that Nimrod wore were the symbol of physical power. The boar’s tusks were the symbol of spiritual power. As a “horn” means power, so a tusk, that is, a horn in the mouth, means “power in the mouth;” in other words, the power of persuasion; the very power with which “Sem,” the primitive Hercules, was so signally endowed. Even from the ancient traditions of the Gael, we get an item of evidence that at once illustrates this idea of power in the mouth, and connects it with that great son of Noah, on whom the blessing of the Highest, as recorded in Scripture, did especially rest. The Celtic Hercules was called Hercules Ogmius, which, in Chaldee, is “Hercules the Lamenter.” * No name could be more appropriate, none more descriptive of the history of Shem, than this. Except our first parent, Adam, there was, perhaps, never a mere man that saw so much grief as he. Not only did he see a vast apostasy, which, with his righteous feelings, and witness as he had been of the awful catastrophe of the flood, must have deeply grieved him; but he lived to bury SEVEN GENERATIONS of his descendants. He lived 502 years after the flood, and as the lives of men were rapidly shortened after that event, no less than SEVEN generations of his lineal descendants died before him (Gen. xi. 10-32). How appropriate a name Ogmius, “The Lamenter or Mourner,” for one who had such a history! Now, how is this “Mourning” Hercules represented as putting down enormities and redressing wrongs? Not by his club, like the Hercules of the Greeks, but by the force of persuasion. Multitudes were represented as following him, drawn by fine chains of gold and amber inserted into their ears, and which chains proceeded from his mouth. * There is a great difference between the two symbols-the tusks of a boar and the golden chains issuing from the mouth, that draw willing crows by the ears; but both very beautifully illustrate the same idea–the might of that persuasive power that enabled Shem for a time to withstand the tide of evil that came rapidly rushing in upon the world.
Now when Shem had so powerfully wrought upon the minds of men as to induce them to make a terrible example of the great Apostate, and when that Apostate’s dismembered limbs were sent to the chief cities, were no doubt his system had been established, it will be readily perceived that, in these circumstances, if idolatry was to continue–if, above all, it was to take a step in advance, it was indispensable that it should operate in secret. The terror of an execution, inflicted on one so mighty as Nimrod, made it needful that, for some time to come at least, the extreme of caution should be used. In these circumstances, then, began, there can hardly be a doubt, that system of “Mystery,” which, having Babylon for its center, has spread over the world. In these Mysteries, under the seal of secrecy and the sanction of an oath, and by means of all the fertile resources of magic, men were gradually led back to all the idolatry that had been publicly suppressed, while new features were added to that idolatry that made it still more blasphemous than before. That magic and idolatry were twin sisters, and came into the world together, we have abundant evidence.
With all this mythology now laid out for us, we can see that Nimrod viciously attacked Cush and during this attack castrated him. Nimrod continued to reign supreme in Mesopotamia or the area of Babylon. At some point, he was captured by Shem who is also known to be the Melchizedek of Salem. Jeru means city. So Jerusalem means the City of Peace. Salem is peace.
Nimrod was tried and found guilty in a court of law and executed and his body cut apart and sent to the other nations as a warning not to follow in Nimrods Rebellious ways. This led to the Babylonian religion and worship of Nimrod becoming secretive and hidden from Shem. Hence the Mysterious Babylonian Religion was born.
The important thing in all of this is to know and understand the Shem fought with Nimrod for ten years according to these myths, which are based on truths long forgotten.
It is also my belief that Shem built the Great Pyramid of Giza. But the is just my view.
Shem outlived 7 generations as mentioned above. He was known as Melchizedek, Hercules, and Typho in mythology.
Hebrew records him as being without Father or Mother. The Greek word here is apator and means unrecorded paternity and ametor meaning unknown maternity.
G540 apato?r ap-at’-ore
From G1 (as a negative particle) and G3962; fatherless, that is, of unrecorded paternity: – without father.
G282 ame?to?r am-ay’-tore
From G1 (as a negative particle) and G3384; motherless, that is, of unknown maternity: – without mother.
Heb 7:1 For this Malkitse?eq, sovereign of Shal?m, priest of the Most High Elohim, who met A?raham returning from the slaughter of the sovereigns and blessed him, to whom also A?raham gave a tenth part of all, his name being translated, indeed, first, ‘sovereign of righteousness,’ and then also sovereign of Shal?m, that is, ‘sovereign of peace,’ without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but having been made like the Son of Elohim, remains a priest for all time.
Abraham meets Shem in the Kings Garden in the year 1810 BC when Shem was 469 years old, Abraham was 79.
Shem dies in the year 1679 BC. Abraham had died in 1714 BC., just 35 years before Shem. Isaac and Jacob were born and could have met Shem before he died at the age of 600.
From the time of Shem’s death until the children of Israel leave to dwell in Egypt is just 80 years. They would be in Egypt until the year of the Exodus in 1379 BC. A duration of 220 years.
It would be Moses whom Yehovah would command to go and get His people.
Daniel 9:25 Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks.
Yehovah told Moses to go and get the people at the burning bush in the year 1383 BC and King David was born exactly 7 Jubilee cycles later in the year 1040 BC.
2 Sam 5:3 So all the elders of Israel came to the king at Hebron, and King David made a covenant with them at Hebron before the Lord, and they anointed David king over Israel. David was thirty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned forty years. At Hebron he reigned over Judah seven years and six months, and at Jerusalem he reigned over all Israel and Judah thirty-three years.
David became King in the year 1010 BC when he was 30 years of age and he took the City of Jebus in the year 1003 BC.
2 Sam 5:6 And the king and his men went to Jerusalem against the Jebusites, the inhabitants of the land, who said to David, “You will not come in here, but the blind and the lame will ward you off”—thinking, “David cannot come in here.” Nevertheless, David took the stronghold of Zion, that is, the city of David. And David said on that day, “Whoever would strike the Jebusites, let him get up the water shaft to attack ‘the lame and the blind,’ who are hated by David’s soul.” Therefore it is said, “The blind and the lame shall not come into the house.” And David lived in the stronghold and called it the city of David. And David built the city all around from the Millo inward. And David became greater and greater, for the Lord, the God of hosts, was with him.
So from the year when Shem, Melchezidek died in 1679 BC until the year when David took the city back in 1003 BC, a total of 676 years had passed.
Salem- Jebus- City of David
The Jebusites were the sons of Canaan
Gen 10:15 Canaan fathered Sidon his firstborn and Heth, and the Jebusites, the Amorites, the Girgashites, the Hivites, the Arkites, the Sinites, the Arvadites, the Zemarites, and the Hamathites. Afterward the clans of the Canaanites dispersed.
Number 13:25 At the end of forty days they returned from spying out the land. And they came to Moses and Aaron and to all the congregation of the people of Israel in the wilderness of Paran, at Kadesh. They brought back word to them and to all the congregation, and showed them the fruit of the land. And they told him, “We came to the land to which you sent us. It flows with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. However, the people who dwell in the land are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large. And besides, we saw the descendants of Anak there. The Amalekites dwell in the land of the Negeb. The Hittites, the Jebusites, and the Amorites dwell in the hill country. And the Canaanites dwell by the sea, and along the Jordan.”
From Genesis 15 when Yehovah made the covenant with Abraham the Jebusites were already dwelling in the land and Shem was still King at that time. But, Yehovah says this thing that I find strange.
Gen 15:16 But in the fourth generation they shall come here again, for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full.
The iniquity of the Amorites was full by the time Joshua crossed the Jordan River in 1337 BC, 472 years later.
We also know that the Pharaoh in Egypt was still righteous because of what he did with Sara when she and Abraham went there due to the famine. And knowing that Nimrod was connected to Egypt will also help you to understand why Abraham feared for his life there.
Gen 12:10 Now there was a famine in the land. So Abram went down to Egypt to sojourn there, for the famine was severe in the land. When he was about to enter Egypt, he said to Sarai his wife, “I know that you are a woman beautiful in appearance, and when the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ Then they will kill me, but they will let you live. Say you are my sister, that it may go well with me because of you, and that my life may be spared for your sake.” When Abram entered Egypt, the Egyptians saw that the woman was very beautiful. And when the princes of Pharaoh saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh. And the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. And for her sake he dealt well with Abram; and he had sheep, oxen, male donkeys, male servants, female servants, female donkeys, and camels.
But the Lord afflicted Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. So Pharaoh called Abram and said, “What is this you have done to me? Why did you not tell me that she was your wife? Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ so that I took her for my wife? Now then, here is your wife; take her, and go.” And Pharaoh gave men orders concerning him, and they sent him away with his wife and all that he had.
We have another example of the Righteousness of the Pharaoh in Gen 20
Gen 20:1 Now there was a famine in the land. So Abram went down to Egypt to sojourn there, for the famine was severe in the land. When he was about to enter Egypt, he said to Sarai his wife, “I know that you are a woman beautiful in appearance, and when the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife.’ Then they will kill me, but they will let you live. Say you are my sister, that it may go well with me because of you, and that my life may be spared for your sake.” When Abram entered Egypt, the Egyptians saw that the woman was very beautiful. And when the princes of Pharaoh saw her, they praised her to Pharaoh. And the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. And for her sake he dealt well with Abram; and he had sheep, oxen, male donkeys, male servants, female servants, female donkeys, and camels.
But the Lord afflicted Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. So Pharaoh called Abram and said, “What is this you have done to me? Why did you not tell me that she was your wife? Why did you say, ‘She is my sister,’ so that I took her for my wife? Now then, here is your wife; take her, and go.” And Pharaoh gave men orders concerning him, and they sent him away with his wife and all that he had.
We also read in Gen 9:22 about Ham uncovering the nakedness of His father. This is telling us that Ham had sex with his mother the wife of Noah and from this sexual relationship Canaan was born. The Jebusites come from Canaan.
And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father and told his two brothers outside. Then Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on both their shoulders, and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father.
Canaan is the bastard child of Ham and Ham’s Mother, the wife of Noah. So I find this interesting in Deuteronomy.
Deut 23:2 A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of Jehovah. Even to his tenth generation he shall not enter into the congregation of Jehovah.
From Shem until Abraham was 10 generations and from Abraham until Moses was another 4 generations. Joshua took over after Moses and by the time of Joshua, the Jebusites are dwelling in Salem and have changed the name to Jebus.
The Jebusites, stated to have dwelt in the mountains (Num. xiii. 29; Josh. xi. 3), were a warlike people. At the time of Joshua’s invasion the capital of the Jebusites was Jerusalem, called also “Jebus” (Judges xix. 10, 11; II Sam. v. 6), whose king Adoni-zedek organized a confederacy against Joshua. Adoni-zedek was defeated at Beth-horon, and he himself was slaughtered at Makkedah (Josh. x. 1-27); but the Jebusites could not be driven from their mountainous position, and they dwelt at Jerusalem with the children of Judah and Benjamin (Josh. xv. 63; Judges i. 21).
When Joshua comes against Jebus we have one of the most amazing stories. And we have a King of Jebus named Adoni-Zedek.
Joshua 10:1 The Sun Stands Still
As soon as Adoni-zedek, king of Jerusalem, heard how Joshua had captured Ai and had devoted it to destruction, doing to Ai and its king as he had done to Jericho and its king, and how the inhabitants of Gibeon had made peace with Israel and were among them, he feared greatly, because Gibeon was a great city, like one of the royal cities, and because it was greater than Ai, and all its men were warriors. So Adoni-zedek king of Jerusalem sent to Hoham king of Hebron, to Piram king of Jarmuth, to Japhia king of Lachish, and to Debir king of Eglon, saying, “Come up to me and help me, and let us strike Gibeon. For it has made peace with Joshua and with the people of Israel.” Then the five kings of the Amorites, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, and the king of Eglon, gathered their forces and went up with all their armies and encamped against Gibeon and made war against it.
And the men of Gibeon sent to Joshua at the camp in Gilgal, saying, “Do not relax your hand from your servants. Come up to us quickly and save us and help us, for all the kings of the Amorites who dwell in the hill country are gathered against us.” So Joshua went up from Gilgal, he and all the people of war with him, and all the mighty men of valor. And the Lord said to Joshua, “Do not fear them, for I have given them into your hands. Not a man of them shall stand before you.” So Joshua came upon them suddenly, having marched up all night from Gilgal. And the Lord threw them into a panic before Israel, who struck them with a great blow at Gibeon and chased them by the way of the ascent of Beth-horon and struck them as far as Azekah and Makkedah. And as they fled before Israel, while they were going down the ascent of Beth-horon, the Lord threw down large stones from heaven on them as far as Azekah, and they died. There were more who died because of the hailstones than the sons of Israel killed with the sword.
At that time Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord gave the Amorites over to the sons of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel,
“Sun, stand still at Gibeon,
and moon, in the Valley of Aijalon.”
And the sun stood still, and the moon stopped,
until the nation took vengeance on their enemies.
Is this not written in the Book of Jashar? The sun stopped in the midst of heaven and did not hurry to set for about a whole day. There has been no day like it before or since, when the Lord heeded the voice of a man, for the Lord fought for Israel.
So Joshua returned, and all Israel with him, to the camp at Gilgal.
Five Amorite Kings Executed
These five kings fled and hid themselves in the cave at Makkedah. And it was told to Joshua, “The five kings have been found, hidden in the cave at Makkedah.” And Joshua said, “Roll large stones against the mouth of the cave and set men by it to guard them, but do not stay there yourselves. Pursue your enemies; attack their rear guard. Do not let them enter their cities, for the Lord your God has given them into your hand.” When Joshua and the sons of Israel had finished striking them with a great blow until they were wiped out, and when the remnant that remained of them had entered into the fortified cities, then all the people returned safe to Joshua in the camp at Makkedah. Not a man moved his tongue against any of the people of Israel.
Then Joshua said, “Open the mouth of the cave and bring those five kings out to me from the cave.” And they did so, and brought those five kings out to him from the cave, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, and the king of Eglon. And when they brought those kings out to Joshua, Joshua summoned all the men of Israel and said to the chiefs of the men of war who had gone with him, “Come near; put your feet on the necks of these kings.” Then they came near and put their feet on their necks. And Joshua said to them, “Do not be afraid or dismayed; be strong and courageous. For thus the Lord will do to all your enemies against whom you fight.” And afterward Joshua struck them and put them to death, and he hanged them on five trees. And they hung on the trees until evening. But at the time of the going down of the sun, Joshua commanded, and they took them down from the trees and threw them into the cave where they had hidden themselves, and they set large stones against the mouth of the cave, which remain to this very day.
As for Makkedah, Joshua captured it on that day and struck it, and its king, with the edge of the sword. He devoted to destruction every person in it; he left none remaining. And he did to the king of Makkedah just as he had done to the king of Jericho.
The Jebusites contested David’s entrance into Jerusalem (II Sam. v. 6-8). Later a notable Jebusite, Araunah, or Ornan, sold his thrashing-floor to David for the erection of an altar (II Sam. xxiv. 18-24; I Chron. xxi. 18-25). The Jebusites as well as the other tribes that had not been exterminated were reduced to serfdom by Solomon (I Kings ix. 20, 21). In the expression of Zechariah,” and Ekron will be as a Jebusite” (Zech. ix. 7), “Jebusite” must be taken to mean “Jerusalemite.”
Lord Tzedek is an Amorite and now the iniquity must be full. But why is the Lord of Righteousness full of iniquity? And is this Lord of Righteousness descended from Melchizedek? No the Amorites and Jebusites both descended from Canaan, not Shem.
Adoni-zedek which means Lord of Righteousness would then be an imposter. And here you have an end time message of Satan who deceives the whole world and seeks to sit on the very throne of Yehovah. And it is Joshua, Yeh-Shua who drives him out and kills him.
Isaiah 14:12 “How you are fallen from heaven,
O Day Star, son of Dawn!
How you are cut down to the ground,
you who laid the nations low!
You said in your heart,
I will ascend to heaven;
above the stars of God
I will set my throne on high;
I will sit on the mount of assembly
in the far reaches of the north;
I will ascend above the heights of the clouds;
I will make myself like the Most High.’
But you are brought down to Sheol,
to the far reaches of the pit.
The point I wanted to make before I went off on all these rabbit trails was the Salem was a city that was occupied and lived in for about 500 years before Abraham came there.
Gen 22:1 After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”
:9 When they came to the place of which God had told him, Abraham built the altar there and laid the wood in order and bound Isaac his son and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood.’
Isaac was not offered in the city of Salem. He was offered up in the exact same place that the Sin-offerings would later be offered as well as the same place the Red Heffer offering would be and that was on Golgatha across the Kidron from the City of Salem on Har HaMashchit. This is the Southernmost Mountain of what today is the Mount of Olives which is made up of three mountains. Mooutn Scopus to the North and the Mount of Olives in the middle across from the Temple Mount and The Mount of Corruption across from the City of David or what was Salem.
The sacred character of the mount is alluded to in the Book of Ezekiel 11:23;
“And the glory of the Lord went up from the midst of the city, and stood upon the mountain which is on the east side of the city.”
The biblical designation Mount of Corruption, or in Hebrew Har HaMashchit (I Kings 11:7–8), derives from the idol worship there, begun by King Solomon building altars to the gods of his Moabite and Ammonite wives on the southern peak, “on the mountain which is before (east of) Jerusalem” (1 Kings 11:7), just outside the limits of the holy city. This site was known for idol worship throughout the First Temple period, until king of Judah, Josiah, finally destroyed “the high places that were before Jerusalem, to the right of Har HaMashchit…”(II Kings 23:13)
This Mount of Corrpution is the same Mountain Yehshua would be murdered upon many years later in the place where Isaac was offered.
The City of Salem
I do not want you all to forget the topography of the land around Jerusalem before there was ever any city. Again look at this map. There is one very obvious thing that is missing from this picture and I will see if I get to that part before we finish this week’s News Letter.
Eli Shukron’s dig, which began in 1995, uncovered a massive fortification of five-ton stones stacked 21 feet (6 meters) wide. Pottery shards helped date the fortification walls to be 3,800 years old. They are the largest walls found in the region from before the time of King Herod, the ambitious builder who expanded the Second Jewish Temple complex in Jerusalem almost 2,100 years ago. The fortification surrounded a water spring and is thought to have protected the ancient city’s water source.
The fortification was built 800 years before King David would have captured it from its Jebusite rulers. Shukron says the biblical story of David’s conquest of Jerusalem provides clues that point to this particular fortification as David’s entry point into the city.
800 years before King David puts us back into 1800 BC and this, as we have shared with you above, was the time when Melchezidek ruled from Salem. So these rock fortifications were built by Melchizedek and the archaeology has confirmed it.
These next two pictures shows this wall that has had much more of it recently uncovered as it would have looked during the time of Melcheidek and of the Jebusites and of David when he captured the city.
But do keep in mind that the City of Salem and the city of Jebus and the City of David which are all the exact same place, all of them only occupied the very southern end of the ridge as shown to you in the following two maps. Everything from the Gihon Spring South or thereabouts.
The area in yellow below is the City of Salem. When David captures it he restores the Milo which we have shown in blue.
There have also been some very exciting excavations in the Gihon area found by Eli Shukron mentioned above which may have been an ancient sacrifice area even before Solomon built the Temple. Could this have been the area used by Melchizedek? The court is still out as these findings are just a couple of years old. I have yet to see them myself.
This next picture is of a Pillar Stone believed to be and will be determined to be the monument (matzevah – Genesis 28:22) that Jacob erected to confirm his covenant with God and take his name Israel.
Genesis 28:10 Jacob’s Dream
Jacob left Beersheba and went toward Haran. And he came to a certain place and stayed there that night, because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones of the place, he put it under his head and lay down in that place to sleep. And he dreamed, and behold, there was a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven. And behold, the angels of God were ascending and descending on it! And behold, the Lord stood above it and said, “I am the Lord, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac. The land on which you lie I will give to you and to your offspring. Your offspring shall be like the dust of the earth, and you shall spread abroad to the west and to the east and to the north and to the south, and in you and your offspring shall all the families of the earth be blessed. Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land. For I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.” And he was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”
So early in the morning Jacob took the stone that he had put under his head and set it up for a pillar and poured oil on the top of it. He called the name of that place Bethel, but the name of the city was Luz at the first. Then Jacob made a vow, saying, “If God will be with me and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat and clothing to wear, so that I come again to my father’s house in peace, then the Lord shall be my God, and this stone, which I have set up for a pillar, shall be God’s house. And of all that you give me I will give a full tenth to you.”
What did Jerusalem look like at the time of King David? When David arrived, it was more of a fortress than a city. And the fortress was called Jebus, not Jerusalem.
What is missing from the above pictures is the one thing they will never find in Archeology. And that is the Akra. In order for you to find it, you must come ahead in history to about 900 years from the time of David to the time of the Maccabees.
People say they want to keep Chanukah to remember the event of this time. That is a lie. If they would actually read the story in full in the books of Maccabees they would know these things. Instead, they want to rush to light the candles and they miss everything.
If we were to be sitting across the Kidron and looking at the City of David we would see something like this castle on the left-hand side way up in the air.
If you were to take this picture of a Castle which is also called a Citadel and an Akra and place it where the City of David or Mount Zion once stood it would be to the left of where I am standing and on a level that is just below what is now the Temple Mount. the trees immediately to the right of me is where the Gihon Spring is and the Citadel of David was just inside the walls that went around the Gihon. The Citadel and the Milo that was apart of its defense made up the Akra of David.
Many thanks to Pauline Benjes for her help in making these pictures to show what we can no longer see.
Where this Citadel, this Akra once stood now looks like this picture below. It is our tour group sitting on the bare rocks where the City of David, the Citadel, the Akra once stood.
We read about the demise of the City of David, Mount Zion which is also called Ariel in the book of Isaiah. That is the Lion of Yehovah, (Ari of El).
The Siege of Jerusalem
Isaiah 29:1 Ah, Ariel, Ariel,
the city where David encamped!
Add year to year;
let the feasts run their round.
Yet I will distress Ariel,
and there shall be moaning and lamentation,
and she shall be to me like an Ariel.
And I will encamp against you all around,
and will besiege you with towers
and I will raise siegeworks against you.
And you will be brought low; from the earth you shall speak,
and from the dust your speech will be bowed down;
your voice shall come from the ground like the voice of a ghost,
and from the dust your speech shall whisper.
But the multitude of your foreign foes shall be like small dust,
and the multitude of the ruthless like passing chaff.
And in an instant, suddenly,
you will be visited by the Lord of hosts
with thunder and with earthquake and great noise,
with whirlwind and tempest, and the flame of a devouring fire.
And the multitude of all the nations that fight against Ariel,
all that fight against her and her stronghold and distress her,
shall be like a dream, a vision of the night.
As when a hungry man dreams, and behold, he is eating,
and awakes with his hunger not satisfied,
or as when a thirsty man dreams, and behold, he is drinking,
and awakes faint, with his thirst not quenched,
so shall the multitude of all the nations be
that fight against Mount Zion.
Astonish yourselves and be astonished;
blind yourselves and be blind!
Be drunk, but not with wine;
stagger, but not with strong drink!
For the Lord has poured out upon you
a spirit of deep sleep,
and has closed your eyes (the prophets),
and covered your heads (the seers).
King David conquered the Jebusite Fort around 1003 BCE and, after moving in, called it “The City of David.” The city was expanded by David and his son, Solomon, and later expanded by King Hezekiah around 700 BCE. Jerusalem flourished until the Babylonians destroyed it around 586 BCE. Nehemiah returned to Jerusalem around 450 BCE and rebuilt the wall and gates of the entire, expanded city. After Alexander the Great died in 323 BCE, the Ptolemaic leadership took Jerusalem and built up the area of the original City of David to house their troops. They added high towers to the northern end of their fort to keep an eye on the goings on in the Temple area. (Note is the stepped stone structure in the pictures above) In the above photograph, you can see the silver Dome of the mosque which is located on the Temple Mount. This shows that the soldiers could observe the activities around the Temple from the top of these towers and other towers that existed on top of the ridge. Some of the Jewish scribes were sent to Egypt to translate the Hebrew Scriptures into the Greek language around 250 BCE and it was these scribes who first called the fort, Akra, when they translated II Samuel 5: 9.
THE LOCATION OF THE AKRA
Mislead by Josephus, modern scholars have attempted to locate the ancient Seleucid Akra against the southern wall of the original Temple Mount or in some other similar location. The actual location of the Akra in the City of David, however, was given almost two hundred years before Josephus in the Book of I Maccabees. Notice (underlining ours): I Maccabees I. 33 Then builded they (the Seleucids) the City of David with a great and strong wall, and with mighty towers, and made it a stronghold (Gk. akpau Akra) for them.The Maccabean, Simon, later captured the fortification of the Akra from the soldiers of Antiochus as recorded in: I Maccabees XIV. 36, 37 For in his (Simon’s) time things prospered in his hands, so that the heathen were taken out of their country, and they also that were in the city of David in Jerusalem, who had made themselves a tower (Gk. akpav Akra), out of which they issued and polluted all about the sanctuary, and did much hurt in the holy place.
The use of this Greek word akpav (Akra) to describe a strong hold, fort or “tower” is very unusual.The usual Greek word for tower is purgos which is used in the synoptic gospels and throughout the book of Maccabees. This stronghold, fort or “tower” was the Akra, the same fort that David conquered from the Jebusites when he first made Jerusalem his capital city: II Samuel 5: 7 Nevertheless David took the strong hold of Zion: the same is the city of David. That the City of David is the location of the Seleucid Akra is proved by another passage in I Maccabees where the wicked prince Nicanor is sent to Jerusalem by the Seleucid king Demetrius to destroy the followers of Judas Maccabeus. Judas, however, killed about five thousand of Nicanor’s men, and then the story continues in: I Maccabees VII. 32
…and the rest fled into the city of David. This shows that the entire City of David (nine acres) must have been controlled by the Seleucids who, through the Fountain Gate or Dung Gate in the south, allowed access to Nicanor’s soldiers into the Akra.
Josephus, relying on tradition, erroneously conjectured that the Akra “was attached to and rose above the Temple in Jerusalem.” That, of course, is impossible for no political building was ever attached to the Temple. Some have thought that Josephus meant that the Akra was attached to the southern retaining wall, but that too is impossible. The Hasmoneans built their extension to the southern end of the original Temple Mount in 152 BC, before the Akra was razed by Simon in about 137 BCE. Note the Antiquities of the Jews Book XIII. Chapter VI Simon…took the citadel of Jerusalem by siege, and cast it down to the ground, that it might not be any more a place of refuge to their enemies… Inasmuch as the Akra was still standing after the Hasmoneans built their Temple Mount extension means that the Akra with its high towers overlooking the Temple had to be in a different location. That location was in the City of David as we have seen. In another place in his Antiquities of the Jews, Josephus mentions the Akra: Book XII. Ch. V He (King Antiochus IV) also burnt down the finest buildings; and when he had overthrown the city walls, he built a citadel in the lower part of the city, for the place was high, and overlooked the temple on which account he fortified it with high walls and towers, and put into it a garrison of Macedonians. Qedem 19, page 29 from the Hebrew University says that the hill of the City of David was the main part of the Lower City (“the lower part of the city”). The Akra (citadel, fort), then, would have occupied the City of David, adjacent to the Temple (not the Temple Mount). It was here that Antiochus IV rebuilt the citadel that his father, Antiochus III the Great, captured from the Ptolemies of Egypt.
The southern end of their eastern wall (W 151-152 from Dr. Shiloh’s excavation), built on bedrock, still remains in Area D1 on top of the ridge as part of the City of David Archaeological Park. Dr. Shiloh confirmed the dating of W 151-152 to the Hellenistic period (Seleucid) by the chalky limestone chips, refuse from a quarry of the Persian period, found under the wall (Qedem 19, page 8). The northern end of the City of David Archaeological Park also has traces of the same upper ridge wall (W 309) and the remnants of two towers (southern, W 310, and northern, W 308) on each side of the Stepped Stone Structure. Fortunately for us, when the Hellenists finished their construction, they covered the foundations on the hillside with a 10’ to 13’ thick glacis of earth and gravel that sealed the surface of the slope and made it difficult for the enemy to ascend.
A layer (5 feet thick) of Persian period pottery was found under the northern tower by Eilat Mazar. Evidence of the Babylonian destruction was found below that. There were two dog burials between the Persian period pottery and the tower itself. This would indicate that the tower was constructed immediately after the Persians had left but before the Hellenists arrived. Zerubbabel was in Jerusalem for two years before starting to rebuild the Temple (Ezra 3: 8) and he may have constructed the tower to protect the palace area. Ezra 4: 12 describes the Jews building” the rebellious the bad city, and have set up the walls thereof, and joined the foundations”. Haggai 1:1-5 also indicates that work was done on their houses before they finished the Temple:
“In the second year of Darius the king, in the sixth month, in the first day of the month, came the word of the Lord by Haggai the prophet unto Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest, saying, Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, saying, This people say, The time is not come, the time that the Lord’s house should be built. Then came the word of the Lord by Haggai the prophet, saying, Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled houses, and this house lie waste? Now therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways.”
The Hellenists later reinforced the tower and restored the citadel, adding their own high towers that overlooked the Temple to the north. The comparatively rounded stones used in the construction of the wall, with its two towers, also prove that the Hasmoneans could not have been the builders because they used squared stones with a prominent boss in their constructions. Note the Antiquities of the Jews by Josephus: Book XIII,Chapter II I (King Demetrius) also give you leave to repair and rebuild your temple, and that all be done at my expense. I also allow you to build the walls of your city, and to erect high towers, and that they be erected at my charge.…thus did Jonathan make his abode at Jerusalem…he gave orders that the walls of the city should be rebuilt with square stones, that it might be more secure from their enemies.
Also note: I Maccabees X. 10
Jonathan settled himself in Jerusalem, and began to build and repair the city. And he commanded the workmen to build the walls and the mount Sion round about with square stones for fortification; and they did so. An example of their squared stone construction is visible today in their Temple wall extension on the east side of the Temple Mount north of the “Seam” of Herod’s later extension to the south. Other examples are the Hasmonean tower near the Broad Wall, the foundation stones of Herod’s Citadel and other locations including the southern wall of the city of Jerusalem, which was excavated by Bliss and Dickie. After Jonathan’s death, his brother, Simon, destroyed the Akra as recorded in the Antiquities of the Jews by Josephus:
Book XIII. Chapter VI …they…leveled the mountain, and in that work spent both day and night without intermission, which cost them three whole years, before, it was removed, and brought to an entire level with the plain of the rest of the city.The recent excavations above the Stepped Stone Structure show that this statement has been fulfilled. The huge fortification with its gigantic walls and tall towers is completely gone. It is entirely “level with the plain of the rest of the city.” Today the visitor can only look down at the Jebusite olive oil production depressions and other ancient installations carved from the bedrock. If the Hellenists had not covered the Stepped Stone Structure and the bases of the two towers with a thick earthen glacis, we would have no visible evidence today of the fortifications that once occupied this location.
When I first arrived to dig in the City of David, I was assigned to Dr. Shiloh’s Area D2, just south of the ridge where the Akra once stood. There we found two coins (one from 40-37 BCE and another from 37-4 BCE). A coin from 49 BCE was found in Area E1 near the Stepped Stone Structure. It depicts the head of Zeus. Also found there was a fragment of decorated ivory depicting Zeus. Of far more importance were the multitude of coins of the Hellenistic period found in the City of David. Discovered here were 135 coins of the Hellenistic period.
One day while excavating near the bottom of Hezekiah’s mid-slope wall in Area D2, I discovered a handle from a large storage jar dating to the eighth century BCE, the time of Hezekiah. I continued digging along the wall until I reached bedrock. It was this wall of Hezekiah that Nehemiah later repaired. Thirty-five times in Nehemiah chapter three we are told that Nehemiah “repaired” the wall. He did not build a new wall of his own on top of the ridge.
As I was admiring the handle at the foot of Hezekiah’s wall, someone yelled, “Inscription!” Everyone gathered around to witness the new discovery. It turned out to be a stamped Rhodian jar handle from the time of the Seleucid occupation of the Akra in the City of David. The discovery of huge amounts of these Hellenistic stamped Rhodian jar handles in the City of David excavations emphasizes the Seleucid presence in that part of Jerusalem during the Hellenistic period (331-37 BCE). No less that 450 stamped handles were found dating between those dates, 267 of them dating to the time of Antiochus III and his son, Antiochus IV Epiphanes.
This multitude of coins and stamped Rhodian handles of the Hellenistic period found in areas D through G, beneath the eastern ridge of the City of David, testify to the presence of the Seleucids in the City of David.
When Alexander the Great first approached Jerusalem the Jews of the city welcomed him. After his death, however, his Ptolemaic successors from Egypt forcefully established themselves in the City of David (Akra). They remained there until driven out by Antiochus III the Great as seen in the Antiquities of the Jews:
Book XII Ch. III Now it happened that in the reign of Antiochus the Great…the Jews, of their own accord, went over to him, and received him into the city and…readily assisted him when he besieged the garrison which was in the citadel of Jerusalem. It was during this period that the Greek Septuagint translation of the Hebrew Old Testament was written. The Antiquities of the Jews states that King Ptolemy II Philadelphus ordered the High Priest in Jerusalem to send him six elders from each of the twelve tribes of Israel to make the translation. Eleazar, the High Priest, thereupon sent seventy-twoscholars who were totally familiar with Jerusalem in general and the hated Akra in particular.
The final, compelling, proof that the Akra was located on the same strategic site as David’s city is found in the third passage of the Septuagint where the term Akra is found:
II Samuel 5:9 And David dwelt in the hold, and it was called the city of David, and he built the city itself round about from the citadel (Gk. akpau Akra), and he built his own house.
Our conclusion can be none other than that the elusive Akra was built on the original site of the City of David with its towers overlooking the Temple Mount as described twice in the book of I Maccabees and once in the Septuagint.
Again here are two witnesses that tell you that the Akra was torn down to the very bedrock and there is today nothing left of the City of David, His Citadel which Melchezidek built and David refortified from the Milo inwards. It is all gone thanks to the Hasmoneans.
Then they fortified the City of David with a great strong wall and strong towers, and it became their citadel. They stationed there a sinful people, men who were renegades.
—1 Maccabees 1:33–34
1 Maccabees 31;33 31 He plundered the city, burned it with fire, and tore down its houses and its surrounding walls. 32 They took captive the women and children, and seized the livestock. 33 Then they fortified the city of David with a great strong wall and strong towers, and it became their citadel.
And he burnt the finest parts of the city, and pulling down the walls, built the Akra (citadel) in the Lower City; for it was high enough to overlook the temple, and it was for this reason that he fortified it with high walls and towers, and stationed a Macedonian garrison therein.
—Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 12.252
144-135 BC Simon Maccabaeus became leader of the Jews; drove the Syrians out of Jerusalem
142 BC Simon Maccabaeus gained independence from the Seleucids. Jerusalem became the capital, with three administrative regions : Judea, Galilee, and Transjordan
141 BC formation of the Sanhedrin to interpret and enforce the laws of Judaism. The Great Sanhedrin with 71 members met in Jerusalem. Other towns had local courts (small sanhedrin) with 23 members each
140 BC Simon Maccabeus took the titles of High Priest, Commander-in-chief, and Ethnarch of the Jews
140-63 BC The Hasmonean Dynasty of ruling High Priests, founded by Simon Maccabaeus
134 BC assassination of Simon Maccabaeus and his sons Mattathias and Judas, by Simon’s son-in-law, Ptolemy
Antiquities of the Jews – Book XIII.6,7
7. But Simon, who was made high priest by the multitude, on the very first year of his high priesthood set his people free from their slavery under the Macedonians, and permitted them to pay tribute to them no longer; which liberty and freedom from tribute they obtained after a hundred and seventy years (14) of the kingdom of the Assyrians, which was after Seleucus, who was called Nicator, got the dominion over Syria. Now the affection of the multitude towards Simon was so great, that in their contracts one with another, and in their public records, they wrote, “in the first year of Simon the benefactor and ethnarch of the Jews;” for under him they were very happy, and overcame the enemies that were round about them; for Simon overthrew the city Gazara, and Joppa, and Jamhis. He also took the citadel of Jerusalem by siege, and cast it down to the ground, that it might not be any more a place of refuge to their enemies when they took it, to do them a mischief, as it had been till now. And when he had done this, he thought it their best way, and most for their advantage, to level the very mountain itself upon which the citadel happened to stand, that so the temple might be higher than it. And indeed, when he had called the multitude to an assembly, he persuaded them to have it so demolished, and this by putting them in mind what miseries they had suffered by its garrison and the Jewish deserters, and what miseries they might hereafter suffer in case any foreigner should obtain the kingdom, and put a garrison into that citadel. This speech induced the multitude to a compliance, because he exhorted them to do nothing but what was for their own good: so they all set themselves to the work, and leveled the mountain, and in that work spent both day and night without any intermission, which cost them three whole years before it was removed, and brought to an entire level with the plain of the rest of the city. After which the temple was the highest of all the buildings, now the citadel, as well as the mountain whereon it stood, were demolished. And these actions were thus performed under Simon.
This leveling of the City of David, the Akra, causes a great division amongst the people and the Essenes are born and leave to found the area of Qumran where they would write the Dead Sea Scrolls. Simon is listed in those scrolls as the evil king and those of Qumran as the righteous ones.