Archaeologists Uncover Biblical Artifacts in Ancient Shiloh
"Welcome to ancient Shiloh," Stripling told reporters. "This is the first capital of ancient Israel and it's a sacred spot because the Mishkan was here, the Tabernacle, where people came to connect with God."
Ancient Shiloh was the place where Joshua divided the Promised Land to the 12 tribes. The city is also where the Tabernacle was located for more than 300 years.
"We're dealing with real people, real places, real events," Stripling said. "This is not mythology. The coins that we excavated today – we're talking about coins of Herod the Great, Pontius Pilate, Thestos, Felix, Agrippa the First, Agrippa the Second. The Bible talks about these people. We've got the image right here."
Stripling was referring to a wall built by the Canaanites, where his team found ancient coins and thousands of pieces of pottery.
“You can read the Bible, you can walk the Bible, but the ultimate is to dig the Bible," he said. "You know, when we actually get into the swill, like these students from Lea University.
“They're literally – it's under their fingernails and in their nose and in their mouth and their ears and they're exposing this ancient culture. It becomes one with you. It's sort of like we came out of the soil and as we dig into the soil, we connect with God and with each other, I think, in a very important way," he said.
Abigail Leavitt, a student at the University of Pikesville, said the work is hard, but she is gaining a better understanding of the Bible because of it.
"I read the Bible totally differently than I did before I came here, and I can see when I read the Bible I know the places, I know what's going on,” she said.
“I understand it more deeply, especially where previous archaeologists have claimed the archaeology disproves the Bible. But when we dig here, we find that everything matches. You read it in the Bible. You dig in the dirt and there it is," she said.
Stripling said the work isn’t about “proving” or “disproving” the Bible, but about getting a clearer picture of the background of the Bible.
"For me this is sacred soil. This is where the Mishkan was that answers the most basic of all human questions: 'How do I connect with God?' And I think that's their most basic question," he said.
Publication Date: July 17, 2018
Photo Courtesy: Facebook