Chapter 8: Archaeological Confirmation of the Truthfulness of the New Testament

There are several positions on this question:

1. Radical critics (few) deny any evidence for the existence of Jesus, despite historic datings and confirmation of extra-Biblical historians such as Josephus (leading Jewish historian) and Tacitus (leading Roman historian).

2. Less radical but liberal critics deny the historical accuracy of New Testament events, timing, persons, civilizations, cities, but concede elements of truth there.

3. Liberals (at times professedly evangelical) challenge the textural accuracy of the New Testament, despite innumerable confirmations.

4. Conservative (so-called) groups often confess belief in the truthfulness of New Testament accounts but weaken this by phrases following “but” they generally feel the truthfulness of the New Testament cannot be “proven.”

5. Evangelical students clearly and unequivocally affirm the literal truths of the New Testament and call it the Word of God, verbally inspired (“God-breathed”) (II Tim. 3:16). They affirm the same attitudes as that of the Lord Jesus towards Old Testament Scripture.

Ancient Manuscripts

1. Dead Sea Scrolls, discovered 1947, dating between 300 BC to 70 AD.

Most fragments, portions pertain to O.T. including all but one book of our current version (except Esther). Yet cave 7 contained (in 1971) pieces of N.T. books (Mark, Acts, Romans, I Tim., James, II Peter) all dated from 1st century.

2. Bodmer Papyri (parchment fragments), discovered in 1956, dated from 125-150 AD, used to construct most accurate Greek text of John’s Gospel.

Contained segments of N.T. (I, II Peter, Jude, Luke, Acts, various epistles, I John, and oldest copy of John’s Gospel).

3. Oxyrhinchus Papyri discovered in Egypt in 1778, some portions found in southern Italy and Syria dated from 2nd to 4th centuries, covered by 3,875 published documents.

The materials from these documents are used in current Greek N.T. texts.

4. Rylands Papyrus contains fragments of John’s Gospel (18:31-33; 37-38) probably written as early as AD 40, part of codex dated AD 125.

This papyrus was likely copied within one generation of original book of John.

5. Chester Beatty papyri contains part of O.T. and N.T., dated about AD 200, published, in possession of Univ. of Michigan. Writings concerning them all in 5 volumes done by Frederick Kenyon, curator of British Museum.

Fragments of Mark, Luke, John latter “missing leaves” from these contained almost complete copies of Paul’s epistles (confirm our N.T. text).

6. Nag Hammadi papyrus discovered in Egypt (Luxor) now in Coptic Museum in old Cairo; a large pottery jar contained 13 codices (a practice of storage dating from 6th century BC) 5,000 publications about them.

Fragments of many N.T. books, kept by Coptics in Egypt.

7. Codex Sinaiticus discovered in 1844 at Mt. Sinai by Tischendorf, the oldest surviving copy of the complete N.T. written on parchment about AD 350. Its code name is “A” (for Hebrew aleph) and is one of two key early Greek texts. The other code named “B” for Codex Vaticanus.

Confirms the accuracy of our N.T. texts.

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Extra-Biblical References to Jesus

1. Josephus (foremost Jewish historian of Biblical period in AD 93 wrote in his book Antiquities about Jesus and his brothers. Tacitus (foremost Roman historian) of Biblical wrote in his Annals about AD 115-117 about Jesus’ execution by Pilate.

Confirming N.T. historical accuracy Antiquities states, “About this time arose Jesus, a wise man. For he was a doer of marvelous deeds, and a teacher of men who gladly receive the truth. He drew to himself many persons, both of the Jews and also of the Gentiles. And when Pilate, upon the indictment of the leading men among us, had condemned him to the cross, those who had loved him at first did not cease to do so. And even to this date the race of Christians, who are named for him, has not died out.”

Tacitus’s Annals state “Christus, from whom the name [Christians] had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberias at the hand of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilate, and a deadly superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but also in the City….”

There are also brief mentions concerning Jesus in ancient historians like Suetonius ( Lives of the Caesars), Thallus, Pliny the Younger, the Jewish Talmud and Lucian (2nd century).

Birth, Ministry and Death of Jesus

1. Birth at Bethlehem

Texts: Matt. 2:1-8, Luke 2:4-15; John 7:42. Christians throughout history have identified it as the birthplace of Jesus.

O.T. text: Micah 5:2 confirms that Bethlehem Ephratah (of Judea) is to be birthplace of Messiah, who is from “days of eternity.”

Archaeology confirms Jerome and Paulinus give evidence that present Church of Nativity (known since AD 326) shows that 2 centuries before church site was identified as place where Jesus was born. This was before time of Hadrian (117-38 AD). Confirmed by Justin Martyr, Origen and Eusebius (foremost church historian).

2. Jerusalem Temple in Jesus’ Day, Matt. 26, Mark 11, Luke 19-21, John 2, 5, 7. In N.T. Jesus was brought before Pilate at the “Praetorium,” also translated “the governor’s headquarters,” “Pilate’s headquarters,” “Herod’s headquarters” (Matt. 27:27; Mark 15:16; John 18:28‑33).

Gentiles warned against entering Temple area.

Temple proper destroyed by Roman army exactly as Jesus prophesied (“not one stone will be left upon another”).

“Wailing Wall” at Temple Mount is foundational remains of this Temple (excavations under Mount begun in 1968) uncovered much of this part including Southern gates and steps. The Mount is from Jesus’ day and dates back to Mt. Moriah where Abraham offered Isaac. Temple sundial found in 1972 excavations amid debris left by Roman army in 70 AD. Gentile warnings found in 1871 and again in 1938 north of Temple Mount. Temple walls of “Holy of Holies.” Trenches conform to dimensions of ancient site (Ritmeyer: leading authority on Temple).

3. Pontius Pilate inscription.

Texts: Matt. 27:2; Mark 15:1-15; Luke 23:1-5; Luke 3:1; John 18:28-19:16 dates time of Jesus in reign of Tiberius, Pilate as governor of Judea. John 19:13 indicates Jesus stood before Pilate on pavement of Herod’s (Pilate’s) “headquarters” (now beneath present convent called Ecce Homi “show us the man”) in Jerusalem on Via Dolorosa.

At Caesarea, in 1961, excavators found stone slab bearing name of Pilate (at Roman theatre in Caesarea). This theatre, mentioned by Josephus, precursor to one now standing on seashore near southern coast of Israel. There Herod Agrippa I was acclaimed as God. Rebuilt theatre, after his time, dated from 2nd century.

4. Nazareth, hometown of Jesus.

Texts: Matt. 2:23; 4:13; Mark 1:9; Luke 1:26-28, John 1:46

Modern Church of Annunciation stands over an ancient church building. Excavations have shown many artifacts of Christ’s time (1955 by Bagatti) and earlier in century. Also Roman pottery pieces from time of Christ found here. First church built here by converted Jew, Joseph of Tiberius, in time of Constantine (4th cent.) but this was preceded by earlier church (Bagatti) dating from 200s.

5. Capernaum, site of much of Jesus’ ministry, miracles. Texts: Mark 1:21, 28; 3:1-6; Luke 4:31-37, John 6:59. Yigael Tadin (top Jewish archaeologist) says, “ Capernaum is one of the best known sites in the Holy Land.”

The remains of a synagogue, dated from the 4th century AD are here. The remains of an older synagogue, thought to be Peter’s house, were located here (Matt. 8:14; Mark 1:29; Luke 4:38). Present building there was placed over a house from the time of Jesus (Peter’s).

Limestone remains identified synagogues there, dating from 1st century, by noting black basalt walls under walls in present limestone synagogue, therefore from Jesus’ time.

An ancient fishing boat, dating from the time of Jesus (identified by coins) was located near, raised from sea, and is now in an exhibit.

6. Bethsaida, which together with Capernaum and Chorazin, were cursed by Jesus for resisting miraculous signs of the Messiahship.

Texts: Luke 10:13; Matt. 11:21-22

He said their houses would be left “desolate” (without inhabitants).

No villages exist in these sites today, despite many villages elsewhere around the Sea of Galilee. They testify to the accuracy of Jesus’ pronouncement of woe on them.

7. Gergesa (Gerasenes, Gergasenes Gadarenes)

Texts: Mark 5:1; Matt. 8:28; Luke 8:26

Where Jesus cast out demons into the swine who ran down a steep cliff to the sea and drowned.

Gergesa is the only spot on entire eastern side of Sea of Galilee where there is a steep bank going down to the sea. Here alone is a cliff that falls sheer into the lake. This is not true of Gadara in Jordan 5 miles from the Sea of Gerasa in Jordan 37 miles from Sea (other 2 sites suggested). In 1970 Israeli archaeologist Tzaderis investigated a site of an ancient church dated AD 585. He concluded that early Christians believed that this was the site (Gergesa) of the miracle.

8. Jacob’s Well, near Sychar (where Jesus spoke to the Samaritan woman about “living water.”

Texts: John 4:1-41.

Located in eastern part of present Nablus, still fed by an underground stream. Once well was covered by a vault (date unknown), seen by 19th cent. travelers. It could have been part of a burial crypt dating from immediate post-Constantine church.

Eusebius (4th cent.) mentions the well. Origen says a church was built there. In 670 AD it was visited by Arcuef and saw a crypt built over it. Robinson said it was 105 feet deep (in 1838) cf John 4:11 “the well is deep.” Barclay in 1881 noted a limestone slab, almost four feet long, with a hole in the center through which a vessel was lowered into the water.

9. Jericho

(see prior descriptions under “Other Biblical Prophecies”)

Ancient city, said to be “oldest in world,” 20 miles north of the Dead Sea. First mentioned in Num. 22:1. Spies sent by Joshua there to Rahab (Josh. 2:1-21). Cursed it; rebuilding attempted (Josh. 6:1-7:26) was fulfilled. Rebuilt at later date. “And Joshua adjured them at that time, saying, ‘Cursed be the man before the Lord, that riseth up and buildeth the city Jericho: he shall lay the foundation thereof in his firstborn, and in his youngest son shall he set up the gates of it’” (Joshua 6:26 – written in 1451 B.C.)

This prophecy makes four predictions:

A. Jericho shall be rebuilt.

B. It shall be rebuilt by one man.

C. The builder’s oldest son shall die when the work on the city starts.

D. The probability that his youngest son should die just as the gates were being hung was also estimated, from mortality tables, at one in one hundred.

These give for the whole prophecy a probability of 1 in 2 x 10 x 100 x 100 or 1 in 2 x 103.

Also N.T. references in Matt. 20:29; Mark 10:46; Luke 18:35; 19:1. City of parable of the Good Samaritan.

Texts: where Jesus encountered Zaccheus (Luke 19:2-10), also the setting of His story about “The Good Samaritan” (Luke 10:30-37); this was also were He healed the blind man (Luke 18:35-43). Here the “walls of Jericho fell” in O.T. period (Heb. 10:30). As an example of faith in securing victory, Josh. 5:5-20 records the fall and burning of the walls of Jericho.

Excavations point to the fall of the city to Joshua about 1400 B.C. Work done by Germans (1907-1909), Garstang (1930-36), Kenyon (1952), Kelso and Baramki (1950). Garstang noted five layers of each new rebuilding. The fourth layer (city dated 1400 B.C.) had walls showing evidence of violent destruction with ashes, charred timbers, red masses of blackened stones and bricks, consistent with Joshua 6. Garstang found that the wall did actually “fall down flat.” It had a double wall, linked by houses built across the top as Rahab’s “house on the wall.” The outer wall fell backward and down the hill, dragging the inner wall with it. Garstang thought there were indications of an earthquake; signs of fire and destruction were very marked.

The ruins of Jericho show continuous habitation until the 9th century, the time of King Ahab (cf Josh. 16:34).

10. Pool of Bethesda

Where Jesus healed the paralyzed man (Luke 5:2-11). Near “the sheep gate” (John 5:2) mentioned by Eusebius.

Portions of the five porticos (roof supported by columns) mentioned in gospels can be seen today. Copper scroll from Qumran, written in AD 25, mentions it. Bethesda Pool was constructed in 3rd cent. BC by Simon the Just.

11. Pool of Siloam

Texts: John 9:1-41 (blind man healed) built by Hezekiah (8th cent. BC) with 1,750 foot tunnel, bringing water from Gihon Springs (II Kings 20:20).

Pool mentioned by Josephus, visited by tourists today.

12. Cana of Galilee

Texts: John 2:1-11 where Jesus turned water into wine at the wedding feast. Located about 9 miles north of Nazareth.

Location generally unquestioned. Ruins identified by excavators with village of Jesus’ time. Earliest record is 3rd-4th cent. AD. Mosaic under modern church.

13. Bethany – by Mount of Olives

Texts: John 21:1; 11:1, where Jesus resurrected Lazarus. Mentioned 13 times in N.T.

Clearly evident 2 miles from Jerusalem, identified by Eusebius. In AD 300’s church built over the tomb of Lazarus.

14. Palace of Caiaphas

High priest of Jesus’ time (John 18:24) from AD 18-36. Caiaphas’ palace was site of Temple Mount and four towers of Fortress Antonia. In one courtyard of this fortress is a marked pavement that Roman soldiers gambled there. At present, “The Pavement” is in a convent and church called “Ecce Homo,” “Thou art the man.” There soldiers gambled for His garments (John 19:23-24; Matt. 27:35; Mark 15:24).

Excavations since 1888. Stone steps leading to it on north side of present St. Peter Cockcrow Church.

In AD 333, “The Bordeaux Pilgrim” located it, also Theodosius statement that it was 50 paces from Holy Zion Church. The “Madeba Map” in Jordan in a church mosaic floor is identified from AD 560. Bones of Caiaphas found in ossuary, uncovered in 1990 (ossuary now on exhibit).

15. Crucifixion evidence

This was Roman form of execution, not Jewish (stoning).

Texts: Matt. 27:22-44; 28:5

Mark 15:15-32, 16:6;

Luke 23:33, 24:7

John 19:16-41

O.T. prophecies about Messiah indicated crucifixion, prior to its practice by Romans (Psalm 22:1-31, especially verses 14-16).

In 1968, bones of crucified young men (during N.T. times) found in Jerusalem. Seven foot long nail found imbedded in heel bone (on exhibit).

16. Rolling stones tombs

Texts: Matt. 27:60; 28:2

Mark 15:46; 16:34

Luke 24:2

That type of stone with slot for larger stones to close used over Jesus’ tomb.

Located in many places in Israel of the same type as described in N.T. Inside are places for 6-8 bodies. As bodies decayed, bones removed and placed in ossuary (stone box).

17. Jesus’ burial place, tomb of Joseph of Arimathea.

Texts: Matt. 27:57-60

Mark 15:45-46

Luke 23:50-53

John 19:38-42

Mark Twain described it as “the most sacred locality on earth to millions.”

Two different sites have been proposed. One is at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (built in 340 AD), inspired by Queen Helena, mother of Constantine. The other site, better supported by archaeology and visual observation today, is called “Gordon’s Calvary” after Gen. Charles (Chinese) Gordon, a believer, who identified it in 1883. “Gordon’s Calvary” is visually in accord with N.T. descriptions, and marks of an earlier church are there. Moreover, very close by is a hill which appears like a skull ( Golgotha: “skull hill”). Despite some efforts to deface its appearance in past 100 years, its likeness is still evident and is hidden behind the present Jerusalem bus station.

18. Resurrection of Jesus

Texts: He arose according to N.T. accounts, Matt. 28:6-7; Mark 16:6, 9; Luke 24:6, 34; John 21:22, 21:14; Acts 17:13; Rom. 8:24; I Cor. 15:26).

He prophesied that He would arise on the third day (Matt. 16:21; Mark 9:31; Luke 9:22), and His enemies plainly heard Him say it and asked for Roman guard to prevent body being removed. O.T. prophecies indicated Messiah’s resurrection (Psalm 16:10; 22:21; Isa. 53:10).

Besides N.T. accounts, extra-Biblical writers refer to belief in His resurrection and I. Cor. 15:6-7 refers to hundreds of witnesses. At least two unbelieving investigators set out to disprove the resurrection and then became Christians after investigating. Leading legal scholars have pronounced the evidence as overwhelmingly convincing. Resurrection has been called “the most convincing fact of this period.”

Spread of Christianity, Missionary Journeys of Paul

The Christian faith spread through the entire world during the Apostolic period. Acts 17:6 says, “They have turned the world upside down.” In Acts 1:8, Jesus commanded His apostles, “You shall be My witnesses – to the uttermost part of the earth,” thus fulfilling His Great Commission in Mark 16:15, “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to all creation.” From a small, persecuted Hebrew-Christian group, they spread worldwide, and by the time of Constantine’s professed conversion (about AD 330), they became the state religion of the Roman empire, destroying beliefs in its former “gods,” as well as those of the Greeks, Egyptians, and Babylonians. Tertullian, writing even before this time (before 200 AD) wrote of Christianity’s worldwide impact, that despite much martyrdom, the ranks of Christians steadily increased. The twelve apostles, all martyred except John, took the Gospel to the world (Thomas to India, Mark to Egypt, etc.). Paul the apostle, in the first century in three missionary journeys, spread the message and planted churches in Greece, proconsular Asia (now Turkey), and elsewhere.

James was the first apostle martyred (Acts 12:2). Others suffered a like fate. Peter was crucified in Rome. John was exiled to the island of Patmos (Rev. 1:9) and his tomb is traditionally located at Ephesus. Truly “none of these things were done in corner” (Acts 26:21), nor were they “myths” (I Tim. 4:1). These are matters of history.

1. Conversion of Saul of Tarsus

On Damascus Road (Acts 9:1-16)

Christians’ chief persecutor was transformed into Paul the Apostle, who would write most of the N.T. letters and in three missionary journeys preached the Gospel and planted churches in Europe and the Middle East.

After his conversion, he left Damascus for Galilee (strictly to escape assassins) (Acts 9:23-25; II Cor. 11:32-33). From here as a rabbinic leader, he launched persecutions until converted.

The conversion of Saul had an enormous impact throughout the Holy Land. It was called by historians one of the two most important reasons for the belief in Christ. The other and more major reason is the resurrection of Christ, widely witnessed.

2. Antioch (Anakya, in Turkey today)Center of early Christianity (Acts 11 and 12), where Paul and Barnabas helped build a Christian community. Important crossroads and immense Roman highway system during N.T. times.

Excavations have shown it was a large Roman city in Paul’s day, with many artifacts found there.

3. The Politarch Inscription (Acts 17:6).

Paul, in Thessalonica, was dragged before the “politarchs” (city authorities). Critics argued that the Greek term was non-existent in ancient literature of N.T. times. They were not correct and this was an error.

The term “politarch” has been found in 32 inscriptions, 19 of them from Thessalonica, and 3 date from Paul’s time.

4. The Gallio Inscription (Acts 18:11-12).

In Corinth, where Paul stayed about 18 months. Critics denied Gallio’s existence or governorship in Corinth because he had not found confirmation at that time (argument: absence of discovered records show that it is not true). This argument was, and still is, often used to criticize Scripture.

Inscription with Gallio’s name found written on stone in Delphi in Greece. He is identified as proconsul (Roman governor) of the province of Achaia (dated 52 AD). Gallio assumed office in 51 AD. The inscription is a copy of a letter from Emperor Claudius naming Gallio his “friend” and proconsul of Achaia.

5. The Bema (Judgmental Seat) at Corinth Rostrum or tribunal from which civil judgments were handed down or officials addressed the public. Spectators or defendants stood or sat on pavement, about 7 feet below the platform, the place where the Apostle Paul was brought before the Roman governor Gallio in Corinth (Acts 18:12-17).

The word is widely used of the judgment place of believers as to their life and service on earth, “The Judgment Seat of Christ” (Rom. 14:10; II Cor. 5:10).

The harbor at Cenchrea, 6 miles from Corinth, was the place from which Paul sailed on 3rd missionary journey (Acts. 18:18).

Place was identified in 1935 and its platform remains visible in Corinth today. Many inscriptions.

Harbor was excavated in 1963-68.

6. The Erastus Inscription

Writing from Corinth, Paul conveyed greetings from several believers, naming Erastus, the city treasurer, (Rom. 16:23).

In 1929, a paving stone containing Erastus’ name, identified as Roman official, to be seen on paving stone today.

7. Tiberias, capital city on western side of Sea of Galilee – mentioned in John 6:23 as being near to place where Jesus miraculously fed a multitude. Founded in AD 18 as capital city of Galilee by Herod Antipas.

Excavations in 1973-74 revealed two large stone towers on either side of main gate, dating to time of Jesus. Widely visited. Large city there today by same name.

8. Philippi in N.E. Greece, a leading city of Macedonia:

, where Lydia was converted (Acts 16:12-15)

, named a Roman colony by Octavian (Acts 16:12) and settled extensively by his legion veterans, hence many military terms (standing firm, guarding our hearts)

, Paul wrote letter to Philippian believers. Paul reminded that their true citizenship was in heaven, not Rome (Phil. 3:20).

Many inscriptions excavated. In 1984, a dedication to Nero, father of Claudius, discovered. Claudius was emperor when Paul visited ruins of Neapolis.

Philippi gates are located near modern town of Krenides. Theatre site in Philippi, which was there during Paul’s visit and used as late as 5th cent. AD.

9. Thessalonica, one of four Macedonian capitals (now called Salonika) 115 miles south of Philippi. Where Paul preached (Acts 17:1-10). Two letters were written to believers there. An important center of early Christianity.

Archaeological remains discovered of ancient church buildings. The buried remains of the old city are under the present city of Salonika.

10. Athens, both ancient and modern capital of Greece. Where Paul preached from Mars Hill (Acts 17:19‑34) and where many temples to many gods existed. To these, Paul announced to them the identity of their “unknown god” and told them this God did not “dwell in temples made with hands” (Acts 17:24).

All of these scenes still clearly evident in Athens today, dating from Paul’s time.

11. Rome, capital of ancient Roman Empire. Site of Coliseum, huge amphitheatre where many Christians were martyred. It was place where believers received from Paul the Epistle to the Romans. It was the place where Paul was imprisoned (Mamertine) and both he and Peter were put to death by crucifixion.

It is located on seven hills, still placed on modern maps and designated on ancient coins.

See Rev. 17:9, 18; 18:1-4 where harlot Babylon is designated as Rome by its description – thus the modern Roman Catholic system from which God calls His people, “Come out of her.”

Extensive excavations locate all major sites.

Mamertine prison, dating from Paul’s time, Is still standing and visited by tourists today.

Many churches here are associated with the name of Peter and Paul from ancient times. Burial spots are debated.

12. Ephesus in modern Turkey. Ruins near Seljuk today. Ephesus called by geographer Strabo “The greatest emporium in Asia.” Population then was about 200,000. Here was located a statue of Diana (Artemis). See Acts 19:27-28, “great is Diana of the Ephesians,” where outraged citizens attacked Paul for saying, “gods made with hands are no gods at all.”

Paul wrote his Epistle to the Ephesians there, spent much time there. Timothy was there (II Tim. 4:14-15; I Tim. 1:3).

The Apostle John returned here from his exile on Patmos and died there under Emperor Trojan (AD 98-117). A church in his honor is there dating from 4th cent., with legends that his burial spot was under this plot which dates from 2nd cent.

Many ancient ruins from Paul’s time are still there, including main parts of the city.

The reputed tombs of John and the Virgin Mary are there. John was designated by Jesus to care for His earthly mother.

13. Seven churches of Revelation.

Ephesus (Rev. 2:1-7)

Smyrna (modern Ismir, Turkey) (Rev. 2:8‑11)

Pergamum (Rev. 2:18-29)

Thyatira (Rev. 2:18-29)

Sardis (Rev. 3:1-6)

Philadelphia (Rev. 3:7-13)

Laodicea (Rev. 3:14-22)

All sites of these churches have been thoroughly excavated, dating from N.T. times.

Ephesus ruins are near the present city of Seljuk.

Smyrna (Ismir) has few remains.

Pergamum and its major temple can chiefly be seen at Pergamum Museum in Berlin.

Thyatira was excavated 1968-71. Many Roman buildings. Inscriptions (21) in Manissa, Turkey Museum.

Sardis – largely unexcavated – devastated by earthquake in AD 17 during reign of Tiberias. Disaster compared to great fire in Rome AD 64. Rebuilding assisted by Tiberias. In 1979, a statue base inscription to him hailed Emperor as “Founder of the City.

Philadelphia remains largely unexcavated, underneath modern city of Alasehir, Turkey.

Site of many earthquakes. Laodicea was never extensively excavated. Coins and inscriptions recognized Zeus as chief deity. A few traces of the city wall and three gates are evident. An inscription found here mentions Onesimus (Philemon 10), a church leader of nearby Colossae, that it was proud and self-sufficient in attitude indicated by Rev. 3:17.

14. Megiddo

Site of many O.T. battles. Nearby plain was called by Napoleon “ideal for battle.” This may indicate why last great battle on earth will be held here, called in Rev. 16:16 “Armageddon, the hill of Megiddo.” This will not take place in Europe but in Israel when great armies collide from Europe, the North, the South, etc. It is from this place Jerusalem will be attacked and a remnant will only survive due to the second coming of Christ visibly, called “the Revelation” (Rev. 20:1-16, coming “with His saints”) as distinguished from “the Rapture” (I Thess. 4:14-18, “coming for His saints”).

Archaeology validates its location. Often visited today. Canaanite city lies under the ruins of a heavily fortified Israelite city with strong walls.


Conclusion

The N.T. is firmly rooted in well-defined history books, beginning from ancient times. It is historical in setting, not mythological. The texts we have today have been confirmed as containing the same books and lines as the most ancient copies discovered, not tampered or changed in any way, other than word variations consistent with any copying or translating. The places, sites, terms, titles, and references have been extensively confirmed by archaeology, much of it dating from the 20th century. Our documents probably will not be sufficient to “prove,” beyond any objections by skeptics, that the N.T. is God’s Word, as was the O.T. But the evidence is very strong. Volumes have been written to rebut every conceivable objection, certainly satisfying to an unbiased mind. The N.T. is accurate, truthful, not myths and lies.