One of the most fascinating parts of living in Israel is that the Torah comes to life like never before. When you walk the Land, you can appreciate the context of our beloved Bible stories in new ways, which is why it’s so important to read the Bible from an Israel perspective. It’s especially exciting to read about new archaeological evidence emerging after being buried for hundreds or even thousands of years, that illuminates our imagination and strengthens our faith. Recent archaeological discoveries shed light on the ancient Biblical account of Noah and the great flood.
A few years ago, University of North Carolina archaeologists uncovered a mosaic in the Galilee that is over 1,500 years old with a depiction of Noah’s Ark. The mind blowing artifact “is by far the most extensive series of biblical stories ever found decorating the mosaic floor of an ancient synagogue” said UNC professor Jodi Magness.
Read more about the Noah’s Ark mosaic on Israel365 News.
An ancient tablet believed to depict the Biblical Tower of Babel may represent the first-ever image of the real tower when it stood in Babylon during Biblical times. For scholars, the tablet offers proof that the Tower of Babel wasn’t just a fictional account, but an actual building from antiquity. The sixth-century BCE tablet depicts a Babylonian tower known as a ziggurat. After deciphering the tablet, Dr. Andrew George, an expert on ancient Babylon, became convinced it shows the true source of the famed Biblical story.
Read more about the Tower of Babel tablet on Israel365 News.
The 3,500-year-old Gilgamesh Dream Tablet, measuring 5×6 inches, is inscribed with a Sumerian epic poem of ancient Mesopotamia describing a major flood. It is written in cuneiform letters of the Akkadian language detailing a part of the Gilgamesh Epic. It tells the story of King Gilgamesh of Uruk, now in southern Iraq, who ruled sometime between 2,800 and 2,500 BCE.
Read more about the Gilgamesh Dream Tablet on Israel365 News.
Although the story of Noah did not necessarily take place in the Land of Israel, there are important archaeological artifacts that can contribute to our appreciation for this week’s Torah portion.