ISRAEL - Names in Book of Jeremiah Confirmed

Arno Froese

A comparison between the names mentioned in the biblical book of Jeremiah and those appearing on archaeological artifacts from the period when the prophet is believed to have lived—around the sixth to seventh centuries BCE—offers support to its historicity, said Mitka R. Golub, a research fellow at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Over the decades, uncovering ancient inscriptions featuring names appearing in the Bible has been considered by scholars an important tool to shed light on the historicity of its narratives.  

In the past few years, Golub has broadened the concept of what names can teach researchers by focusing her analysis not on specific ones, but on their general characteristics and trends.

“Archaeology is my second career,” Golub told The Jerusalem Post. “I previously studied and worked as a computer scientist. When I decided to devote myself to archaeology, I thought that I could bring my knowledge of statistics to apply quantitative and statistical methods to analyze the data.”

The researcher explained that she decided to focus on names.

“We have found evidence of many names dating back to the First Temple Period, also known as Iron Age II, and they provide us with a lot of data,” she said. “My approach was not simply to highlight that a specific name on an artifact that was also mentioned in the Bible, but to look into the knowledge offered by a collection of names.”

As pointed out by the scholar, the findings suggest that the group of names mentioned in the book have the same characteristics of what has emerged in archaeological excavations.

“The Bible is offering us a story about one group of people, living under what scholars have called the United Monarchy of David and Solomon, who then split into two kingdoms,” she told the Post. “Analyzing names can be a tool to explore the question of to what extent this narrative is accurate.”

In the meantime, new questions and answers on how the names of those who lived thousands of years ago can help shed light on the connection between archaeology and the Bible continue to emerge., 15 June 2020

Arno's commentary

Actually, the title should not read, “Names in Book of Jeremiah Confirmed,” which indicates the Bible being confirmed by archaeology, but the opposite is true; the names are clearly written in Scripture. Much of history is found in the books of Moses and the prophets. It includes places and times. We know that a dual kingdom came into existence in about 930 BC under Jeroboam I, and ended about 722 BC, when the Assyrians took dominion of the 10-tribe Israel.

For Israel-Judah, Nebuchadnezzar II, king of Babylon, conquered Jerusalem around 597 BC.

Important to emphasize is Israel’s future. “…Cry thou, saying, Thus saith the Lord of hosts; I am jealous for Jerusalem and for Zion with a great jealousy. And I am very sore displeased with the heathen that are at ease: for I was but a little displeased, and they helped forward the affliction” (Zechariah 1:14-15).

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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