where is bethel in the middle east

After all, we are close relatives! Its probable intent was "God who brought you out of the land of Egypt is here (in Bethel)." 2 Kings 23:17 Then he said, "What monument is that which I see?" Biblical scholars point out that El is the name of the chief ancient Canaanite deity, as well as being the name of the Hebrew God in the patriarchal narratives. With the latter the name Bethel gives place in mockery to Beth-aven. The Call of Abram The whole area was well watered everywhere, like the garden of the LORD or the beautiful land of Egypt. This is my map of the Middle East, showing the route Abram took, going from Ur of the Chaldeans to Haran and then on to Canaan, into Egypt and finally back to Canaan again. Yahweh said, "Judah shall go up first.". Credit is due under the terms of this license that can reference both the New World Encyclopedia contributors and the selfless volunteer contributors of the Wikimedia Foundation. Even King Jehu, who "destroyed Baal worship in Israel," was criticized because: "He did not turn away from the sins of Jeroboam, son of Nebat, which he had caused Israel to committhe worship of the golden calves at Bethel and Dan" (2 Kings 10:29). bethlehem liberty pa lehigh valley districts pennsylvania schools colleges universities Hebrew). Both versions state that the original name of the place was Luz, a Canaanite name. If you want to stay in this area, then Ill move on to another place. 10 Lot took a long look at the fertile plains of the Jordan Valley in the direction of Zoar. Bethel was evidently already an important religious centre at this time; it was so important, in fact, that the Ark of the Covenant was kept there, under the care of Phinehas the grandson of Aaron (Judges 20:27 f). The maqom was doubtless that at which Abraham had sacrificed, East of the town. Samuel visited Bethel on circuit, judging Israel (1 Samuel 7:16).With the disruption of the kingdom came Bethel's greatest period of splendor and significance. 2 Kings 23:19 All the houses also of the high places that were in the cities of Samaria, which the kings of Israel had made to provoke Yahweh to anger, Josiah took away, and did to them according to all the acts that he had done in Bethel. The shrine is mentioned with disapproval by the prophet Amos (c. 750): Do not seek Bethel, do not go to Gilgal, do not journey to Beersheba. Abram and Lot seperate Thus: When the Israelites suffered a terrible defeat at the hands of Benjamin, they returned to Bethel to weep, fast, and pray "before the Lord." However, even after the conquest of the Northern Kingdom by Assyria in the eighth century B.C.E., the shrine of Bethel retained its importance as a center of devotion to the God of Israel. The name Bethel (beit el) means the "house (or place) of God." It lay South of Shiloh (Judges 21:19). This article abides by terms of the Creative Commons CC-by-sa 3.0 License (CC-by-sa), which may be used and disseminated with proper attribution. Abram and Sarai in Egypt After the establishment of the Israelite monarchy and its subsequent division under Rehoboam of Judah and Jeroboam I of Israel, Bethel became a center of controversy. 1 Kings 12:29 He set the one in Bethel, and the other put he in Dan. He found him at Bethel, and there he spoke with us. He placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made (1 Kings 12:32). 5 Now Lot, who was traveling with Abram, was also very wealthy with sheep, cattle, and many tents. 1 Kings 12:33 He went up to the altar which he had made in Bethel on the fifteenth day in the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart: and he ordained a feast for the children of Israel, and went up to the altar, to burn incense. Judges 1:23 The house of Joseph sent to spy out Bethel. aerosolized rvfv nhp At Judges 20:18, where the Hebrew Beth-El is translated in the King James Version as the 'House of God,' the people of Israel go to Bethel to ask counsel of God when they are planning to attack the Benjaminites at the battle of Gibeah. "He burned the high place (at Bethel) and ground it to powder, and burned the Asherah pole also" (2 Kings 23:15). In the book of Judges 1:22 the descendants of Joseph capture the city of Bethel, which again is said to have previously been called Luz. There are four springs which yield supplies of good water. Identification and Description:It lay West of Ai (Genesis 12:8). 1 Then the LORD told Abram, Leave your country, your relatives, and your fathers house, and go to the land that I will show you. They also told their father the words which he had spoken to the king. (This was before the LORD had destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.) Later, when King Josiah of Judah (seventh century B.C.E.) 4 This was the place where Abram had built the altar, and there he again worshiped the LORD. Genesis 12:1-6 (NLT) He is depicted as erecting a sacred pillar there shortly after having the dream of "Jacob's Ladder" (Gen. 28:18). In the morning Jacob set up "for a pillar" the stone which had served as his pillow (Genesis 28:18; see PILLAR, matstsebhah), poured oil upon it and called the name of the place Bethel, "house of God"; that is, of God whose epiphany was for him associated with the pillar. [5] Most academics continue to identify Bethel with Beitin.[4]. Israel came to Bethel to consult the Divine oracle (Judges 20:18), and it became an important center of worship (1 Samuel 10:3). Bethel (Hebrew: , romanized:B l, "House of El" or "House of God",[1] also transliterated Beth El, Beth-El, Beit El; Greek: ; Latin: Bethel) was an ancient Israelite sanctuary[2] frequently mentioned in the Hebrew Bible. 27 This is the history of Terahs family. At daybreak the king of Israel will be destroyed. In the Book of Joshua, Bethel was temporarily abandoned by the Canaanites when Joshua's forces encamped between Ai and Bethel and drew its residents out (Josh. Although the shrine itself has not yet been located by archaeologists, its northern counterpart at tel Dan has been the subject of an important excavation, revealing a major ancient altar much in keeping with the biblical account. 1 Kings 13:1 Behold, there came a man of God out of Judah by the word of Yahweh to Beth El: and Jeroboam was standing by the altar to burn incense. Jeroboam expanded and improved the shrine, hoping to make ittogether with a major northern altar in the territory of Dana spiritual center of his kingdom. He said, "Yes, I know it; hold your peace. At Judges 21:19, Bethel is said to be south of Shiloh. To cite this article click here for a list of acceptable citing formats.The history of earlier contributions by wikipedians is accessible to researchers here: The history of this article since it was imported to New World Encyclopedia: Note: Some restrictions may apply to use of individual images which are separately licensed. 1 Kings 13:32 For the saying which he cried by the word of Yahweh against the altar in Bethel, and against all the houses of the high places which are in the cities of Samaria, will surely happen.". The fifth-century church historian Eusebius of Caesaria refers to Bethel as a small country town. There were too many animals for the available pastureland. 1 So they left Egypt and traveled north into the NegevAbram with his wife and Lot and all that they owned, If you want that area over there, then Ill stay here. 1 Kings 13:11 Now there lived an old prophet in Bethel; and one of his sons came and told him all the works that the man of God had done that day in Bethel. Chief among these, it appears, was the image of the bull at Bethel, which by the time of Hosea was being worshipped as an image of Baal. 3 I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you. The land is not able to bear all his words. The first to establish the village of Beitin as the site of Bethel was Edward Robinson, in 1838. Hosea 12:4 Indeed, he struggled with the angel, and prevailed; he wept, and made supplication to him. Bethel ("House of God") is mentioned in the Bible as the site where Jacob slept and dreamed of angels going up and down a ladder (Genesis 28:19). [9], See the excavation report by James L. Kelso (dig director 1954, 1957, 1960), William F. Albright (dig director 1934) and others. Joshua 18:22 Beth Arabah, Zemaraim, Bethel. More famously it is mentioned again in Genesis 28,[7] when Jacob, fleeing from the wrath of his brother Esau, falls asleep on a stone and dreams of a ladder stretching between Heaven and Earth and thronged with angels; God stands at the top of the ladder, and promises Jacob the land of Canaan; when Jacob awakes he anoints the stone (baetylus) with oil and names the place Bethel. Most scholars identify Bethel with the modern-day village of Beitin,[4] located in the West Bank, 5 kilometers (3.1mi) northeast of Ramallah; few scholars prefer El-Bireh. [13] J. J. Bimson and David Livingston proposed el-Bireh as the site of Bethel, a view rejected by Jules Francis Gomes, who wrote that "The voices of Livingston and Bimson have hardly been taken seriously by those who worked on the excavations of Bethel. His next sentence could have been one of several meanings depending on how it is translated. Jeremiah 48:13 Moab shall be ashamed of Chemosh, as the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel their confidence. At that time, the area was inhabited by Canaanites. In dedicating the new altar at Bethel, Jeroboam is quoted as declaring to his people: "It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem." At I Samuel 10:3, Samuel tells Saul to go to Bethel to visit the 'Hill of God,' where he will meet a group of prophets coming down from the high place with a 'psaltery, and a tabret, and a pipe, and a harp.' The men went up and spied out Ai. 2 Kings 23:4 The king commanded Hilkiah the high priest, and the priests of the second order, and the keepers of the threshold, to bring forth out of the temple of Yahweh all the vessels that were made for Baal, and for the Asherah, and for all the army of the sky, and he burned them outside of Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron, and carried the ashes of them to Bethel. According to the biblical account, altars were established at Bethel by both Abraham and Jacob, and the latter described it as a place of awesome spiritual power (Gen. 28:17). 1 Chronicles 7:28 Their possessions and habitations were Bethel and its towns, and eastward Naaran, and westward Gezer, with its towns; Shechem also and its towns, to Azzah and its towns; 2 Chronicles 13:19 Abijah pursued after Jeroboam, and took cities from him, Bethel with its towns, and Jeshanah with its towns, and Ephron with its towns. We do not hear of Bethel again until it assumed a far different role in the biblical narrative. Judges 20:26 Then all the children of Israel, and all the people, went up, and came to Bethel, and wept, and sat there before Yahweh, and fasted that day until even; and they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before Yahweh. The monument of the man of God from Judah he allowed to stand (2 Kings 23:4, 25). Should I sell the new wide screen Bible Cartoons? "[1] Indeed some scholars affirm that Bethel was actually more Yahweh-oriented than the Temple of Jerusalem itself, since the statement "behold your God who brought you up out of Egypt" is a typical Yahwistic confession. It is first mentioned in Genesis 12 and 13,[6] as a place near where Abram stayed and built an altar on his way to Egypt and on his return. 3 Then they continued traveling by stages toward Bethel, to the place between Bethel and Ai where they had camped before. 1 Kings 12:32 Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like the feast that is in Judah, and he went up to the altar; so did he in Bethel, sacrificing to the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places that he had made. Bethel/Beitin was again inhabited and fortified by Bacchides the Syrian in the time of the Maccabees. The shrine at Shiloh, a few miles north of Bethel, housed the Ark during the ministry of the judge Eli and his sons, but Bethel was still prominent. Date Bethel is mentioned in Ezra 2:28 and Nehemiah 7:32 as being resettled at the time of the return of the exiles from Babylon. Still apparently known as Luz, it still had to be captured by the Tribe of Joseph (which included both Ephraim and Manasseh). 11 Lot chose that land for himselfthe Jordan Valley to the east of them. In the Bible, God calls Jacob to return to Canaan from exile in Haran, and is reported to have said: "I am the God of Bethel" (Gen. 31:13). [2] Until inscriptions or other writings are uncovered revealing the northern perspective on the controversy, historians need to consider that biblical writers present a theologically biased view of the true nature of the Bethel shrine in its later days.[3]. At the next mention of the Ark, in 1 Samuel 4:3, it is said to be kept at Shiloh. in accordance with New World Encyclopedia standards. Hither the ark was brought from Gilgal (Judges 2:1, Septuagint). Genesis 13:1-13 (NLT) Joshua 16:2 It went out from Bethel to Luz, and passed along to the border of the Archites to Ataroth; Joshua 18:13 The border passed along from there to Luz, to the side of Luz (the same is Bethel), southward. Bethel is mentioned several times in Genesis. They make a second visit (Judges 20:26) after losing the battle. The Hebrew maqom, like the cognate Arabic maqam, denotes a sacred place or sanctuary. At Judges 4:5 the prophetess Deborah is said to dwell at Bethel under the palm-tree of Deborah (presumably a reference to Genesis 35:8, where another Deborah, the nurse of Jacob's mother Rebecca, is said to have been buried under a tree at Bethel). Genesis 35:16 They traveled from Bethel. Bethel is next mentioned in connection with the tenth king of Israel, Jehu (c. 842-815 BC). In the book 1 Samuel 7:16, it is said that the prophet Samuel, who resided at Ramah, used to make a yearly circuit of Bethel, Gilgal and Mizpah to judge Israel. Bethel is mentioned again in 1 Samuel 13:2 and 2 Samuel 30:27. Bible References Genesis 28:19 He called the name of that place Bethel, but the name of the city was Luz at the first. Joshua 12:9 the king of Jericho, one; the king of Ai, which is beside Bethel, one; Joshua 16:1 The lot came out for the children of Joseph from the Jordan at Jericho, at the waters of Jericho on the east, even the wilderness, going up from Jericho through the hill country to Bethel. The name is further used for a border city located between the territory of the Israelite tribe of Benjamin and that of the tribe of Ephraim, which first belonged to the Benjaminites and was later conquered by the Ephraimites. The home of the prophetess Deborah was not far off (Judges 4:5). Bethel shared in the downfall of Samaria wrought by the Assyrians; and according to an old tradition, Shalmaneser possessed himself of the golden calf (compare Jeremiah 48:13). Bethel was one of the towns fortified by Bacchides in the time of the Maccabees (1 Maccabees 9:50; Ant, XIII, i, 3). During a time of bitter warfare between the Tribe of Benjamin and the other tribes, Bethel was known as a holy place where oracles from Yahweh could be received. That Bethel was an important religious shrine for the Israelites during the period of the judges likely has a strong historical basis, and its importance to the northern Kingdom of Israel is undoubted. Compare 11:26, 12:4. In the opinion of one archaeologist: "It is possible that in the religion of the northern tribes of Israel the bull was considered either as the symbol of the God of Israel or its pedestal (recalling the function of the Cherubim in the temple of Jerusalem). In several countriesparticularly in the United Statesthe name has been given to various locations (see Bethel (disambiguation)). It became the royal sanctuary and the religious center of his kingdom (1 Kings 12:29 Amos 7:13). Many Jewish congregations today call their congregations "Beth El," meaning "house of God," and also honoring the sacred history of the place itself. Judges 20:18 The children of Israel arose, and went up to Bethel, and asked counsel of God; and they said, "Who shall go up for us first to battle against the children of Benjamin?" His hand, which he put out against him, dried up, so that he could not draw it back again to himself. The town nearby is still identified as Luz at this point, and Jacob called the place "El Bethel." David Palmer Livingston contradicts this view, based on the lack of positive identification by means of inscriptions and relying on the distance from Jerusalem according to Eusebius and Jerome. When Deborah, the nurse of Jacob's mother Rebekah, died and was buried beneath an oak there, the site also became known as Allon BacuthWeeping Oak (Gen. 35:8). In ancient times these were supplemented by a reservoir hewn in the rock South of the town. Edward Robinson identified the Arab village of Beitin in the West Bank with ancient Bethel in Biblical Researches in Palestine, 183852. A few years later, the prophet Hosea (8th century BC) speaks (at least according to modern translations) of the "wickedness" of Bethel (Hosea 10:15) and Jeremiah (6th century BC) speaks of the "shame" which it brought on Israel (Jeremiah 48:13). I thought it might be interesting to try to calculate how far Abram, Sarai, Lot and their company walked, on all their travels. 8 After that, Abram traveled southward and set up camp in the hill country between Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. Probably on rising ground East of Bethel Abraham and Lot stood to view the uninviting highlands and the rich lands of the Jordan valley (Genesis 13:9).3. 2 Kings 2:3 The sons of the prophets who were at Bethel came out to Elisha, and said to him, "Do you know that Yahweh will take away your master from your head today?" Here he erected a temple, set up an image, the golden calf, and established an imposing ritual. He based this assessment on its fitting the location described in earlier texts, and on the philological similarities between the modern and ancient name, arguing that the replacement of the Hebrew el with the Arabic in was not unusual. 7 So an argument broke out between the herdsmen of Abram and Lot. Take your choice of any section of the land you want, and we will separate. The king of Bethel is listed among 31 monarchs reportedly conquered by Joshua and the Israelites (Josh. 1 Samuel 7:16 He went from year to year in circuit to Bethel and Gilgal, and Mizpah; and he judged Israel in all those places. Bethel also housed the Ark of the Covenant during the period of the judges, when it was also a sacred place to offer sacrifices to God and receive oracles from God. Ewing, "house of God," a city in Ephraim, also a place in S. Judah. The sacred Ark of the Covenant resided there, and the priest Phinehas, a grandson of Aaron, was its minister. If you look carefully at the map border you will see I have included some little black and white figures. Hosea 13:13 describes how the Israelites are abandoning Adonai for the worship of Baal, and accuses them of making or using images for 'idol' worship. 1 Kings 13:10 So he went another way, and didn't return by the way that he came to Bethel. Zechariah 7:2 The people of Bethel sent Sharezer and Regem Melech, and their men, to entreat Yahweh's favor, beth'-el (beth-'el; Baithel and oikos theou, literally, "house of God"):(1) A town near the place where Abraham halted and offered sacrifice on his way south from Shechem.1. Genesis 35:6 So Jacob came to Luz (that is, Bethel), which is in the land of Canaan, he and all the people who were with him. According to 2 Kings 2:1ff, the prophets Elijah and Elisha visited Bethel on a journey from Gilgal to Jericho shortly before Elijah was taken up to heaven alive (2 Kings 2:11). At 16:1 it is again said to be next to Luz, near Jericho, and part of the territory of the descendants of Joseph (that is Manasseh and Ephraim, cf. Amos 3:14 "For in the day that I visit the transgressions of Israel on him, I will also visit the altars of Bethel; and the horns of the altar will be cut off, and fall to the ground. It is represented by the modern Beitin, a village of some 400 inhabitants, which stands on a knoll East of the road to Nablus. (2) A city in Judah which in 1 Samuel 30:27 is called Bethel; in Joshua 19:4 Bethul; and in 1 Chronicles 4:30 Bethuel. 9 Ill tell you what well do. Later, after Jacob's family had settled near Shechem but had run afoul of the local population, God commanded him to move to Bethel and (re)build an altar there. There he built an altar and worshiped the LORD. 28 But while Haran was still young, he died in Ur of the Chaldeans, the place of his birth. 9 Then Abram traveled south by stages toward the Negev. The early shrine was apparently outside of the town of Luz, probably at a "high place." Jacob revisited the place on his return from Paddan-aram; here Deborah, Rebekah's nurse, died and was buried under "the oak" (Genesis 35:6 f). Nehemiah 7:32 The men of Bethel and Ai, a hundred twenty-three. Joshua 16:4). 7 Then the LORD appeared to Abram and said, I am going to give this land to your offspring. And Abram built an altar there to commemorate the LORDs visit. He was survived by Terah, his father. 2 I will cause you to become the father of a great nation. 4). 2 Kings 23:15 Moreover the altar that was at Bethel, and the high place which Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin, had made, even that altar and the high place he broke down; and he burned the high place and beat it to dust, and burned the Asherah. This spot became a center of great interest, lending growing importance to the town. It appears that there was a Philistine garrison there at that time. It is named as on the northern border of Benjamin (the southern of Ephraim, Joshua 16:2), at the top of the ascent from the Jordan valley by way of Ai (Joshua 18:13). [citation needed] He identifies Bethel with El-Bireh, suggesting that Beitin might be biblical Ophrah;[citation needed] however, Ophrah is commonly identified with the nearby village of Taybeh. 03) In a straight line from Shechem, to Bethel, to Egypt it is about 254 miles (409 Km). In process of time the name Luz disappeared, giving place to that of the adjoining sanctuary, town and sanctuary being identified. ISBN links support NWE through referral fees, https://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/p/index.php?title=Bethel&oldid=1015973, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License. However, the earliest literary prophets name Bethel as one of the centers of Israelite spiritual degeneracy (Amos 3:4, 4:4-5; Hosea 4-15, etc.). Bethel is said in Judges 4:5 to be in Mt. Bible Cartoons Search by Famous Bible Stories. This was apparently to make it unnecessary for the people of Israel to have to go to Jerusalem to worship in the temple there. Another account, from Genesis 35[8] repeats the covenant with God and the naming of the place (as El-Bethel), and makes this the site of Jacob's own change of name to Israel. I will add different figures to the borders of each map, adding characters that relate to the map subject. He went there with his flocks and servants and parted company with his uncle Abram. As he was going up by the way, some youths came out of the city and mocked him, and said to him, "Go up, you baldy! took possession of parts of the old Northern Kingdom, he destroyed the altar at Bethel that had been erected by Jeroboam (2 Kings 23:15).