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Archaeological Evidence of Biblical Samson

Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr. —  Leave a comment

Christian Post — An Israeli excavation team believes it has found an artifact depicting the Bible’s Old Testament story of Samson fighting a lion.

Professor Shlomo Bunimovitz and Dr. Zvi Lederman, excavation directors at Tel Aviv University, reported that while recently digging at the Tell Beit Shemesh excavation site, just outside of Jerusalem in the Judaean Hills, they found a small circular stone seal, less than an inch in diameter, which depicts a man with long hair fighting a feline figure.

The seal was found near the River Sorekm, which served as the ancient border between Israelite and Philistine territories, and dates to the 11th century BC, which was biblically during the ruling of the Judges, one of whom was Samson, according to The Telegraph.

According to Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Israeli archaeologists speculate that the seal does not represent a biblical Samson, but rather a story of a local hero who fought a lion and eventually morphed into the biblical Samson tale.

The archaeologists chose to focus their study of this area more on the stark differences between the Philistines, who traveled across the Aegean, and the local people, who were first the Canaanites and later the People of Judah.

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Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.


Ken is a Presbyterian pastor and the author or co-author of over thirty books, most on eschatology. He has been married since 1971, and has three children and several grandchildren. He is a graduate of Tennessee Temple University (B.A., 1973), Reformed Theological Seminary (M.Div., 1977), and Whitefield Theological Seminary (Th.M., 1986; Th.D., 1988). He currently pastors Living Hope Presbyterian Church (affiliated with the RPCGA) in Greer, SC. Much of his writing is in the field of eschatology, including his 600 page book, He Shall Have Dominion: A Postmillennial Eschatology and his 400 page, Before Jerusalem Fell: Dating the Book of Revelation (his Th.D. dissertation). He contributed chapters to two Zondervan CounterPoints books on eschatological issues: Three Views on the Millennium and Beyond (edited by Darrell L. Bock) and Four Views on the Book of Revelation (edited by C. Marvin Pate). He also debated Thomas D. Ice in Kregel's The Great Tribulation: Past or Future? His books have been published by American Vision, Baker, Zondervan, Kregel, P & R, Greenhaven Press, Nordskog, Wipf & Stock, and several other publishers. He has published scores of articles in such publications as Tabletalk, Westminster Theological Journal, Evangelical Theological Society Journal, Banner of Truth, Christianity Today, Antithesis, Contra Mundum, and others. He has spoken at over 100 conferences in America, the Caribbean, and Australia. He is a member of the Evangelical Theological Society and a Church Council Committee member of Coalition on Revival.

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