The House of David: Don't Be Quick to Fault the Bible
The Church is founded on it's Head, the Lord Jesus Christ. See how fundamental is the Bible! Through just one incident of convergence between the Bible and modern archaeology, we can feel the reality of the Bible and the reality the Bible records. And so it is with our Lord Jesus Christ. We are invited to reach out and touch Him, "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life." 1 John 1:1
"The Throne of David". "The House of David". Sonorous, Commanding! Prophetic from ancient of days. Herald to the Messiah, Inheritor of the Throne, the King Messiah, Son of David. But was it real? Or perhaps, made up by zealous and fictionalizing Christians to support their beliefs. As their Gospel favorite, Luke would write - Joseph went with Mary and the Child to Bethlehem, David's City, to be registered "because he was of the 'House and Lineage of David'".
Hundreds of years previous, the Prophet Isaiah would pronounce against the "House of David", "Hear now, you 'House of David'! Is it not enough to try the patience of men? Will you try the patience of my God also?" He also spoke of a "Prince of Peace... who will reign on 'David's Throne'". But was it real? Was there really a King David, recognized as King and Powerful by his subjects, by his peers, by surrounding kings and nations? Was the "Throne of David" wishful thinking and a Jewish invention written to make the past glorious in our eyes? Was David (if there was one) more of a mini chieftain, a ruler of only a tribal chiefdom, as Prof. Israel Finkelstein of Tel Aviv University contended?
But while this controversy was raging, a finger of God, perhaps the same finger that had written the 10 "words" on stone for Moses, had flicked aside the ground and unearthed something that would stand scholars and skeptics on their heads, and grant broad smiles to the believers. It was unearthed at the Dan of the biblical designation "Dan to Beersheba," the northern boundary of the wayward Kingdom of Israel, not too far from the rising Mt. Herman, and it was, as in the time of Moses, a stone. A stele stuck in the ground, and inscribed on it were the mind-boggling words, "The House of David"
The waters of the Dan River which feed the Jordan River
The Tel Dan Inscription
And so it goes -
In 1993 and 1995 archaeological excavations at Tel Dan, in northern Israel, at not far from the beginning rise of the Mt. Hermon and the tributaries leading to the Jordan river, pieces of stone were found bearing an Aramaic inscription commemorating the fall of the city at the hands of the Aramaeans, the king most probably being Hazael. A heated argument had been in the forefront for years with many scholars believing the references in the Bible to "House of David" were anachronistic emanating from later times, particularly after 586 B.C. and read back into early biblical accounts. It had been contended that the writers of the Bible were attempting to bolster Jerusalem into a world class city, and a contender for regional power and influence. And the way to do so was by "revision" history. But the argument now is swinging sharply in favor of the Biblical data, largely due to the "Tel Dan inscription", which has been dated by archaeological and epigraphic (script) analysis to the years 870-750 B.C, about 200 years prior to the time of the supposed Jewish invented Projection back into the past. The inscription, below, follows with the word referring to the "House of David" (the dynasty of David) in both English and Aramaic (now modern Hebrew) "block" script, and pertinent words in red.
The Walls of Tel Dan
We start with the boast of Hazael, king of Aram, who claims to have killed Yehoram son of Ah'av (Ahab), king of Israel, and Ahazyahu (Ahaziah), the son of Yehoram, king of the "House of David":
[ ]...[ ] and cut [ ] [ ] my father went up [ ] he fought at [...]. And my father lay down; he went to his [fathers]. Now the king of I[s]/rael had penetrated into my father's land before. [But then] Hadad made me king, And Hadad marched before me. So I went forth from [the] seven[...]/s of my rule, and I killed [seve]nty kin[gs] who had harnessed thou[sands of cha]/riots and thousands of cavalry.
[And I killed ...]ram son of [...] the king of Israel, and I killed [...]yahu son of [... the ki]/ng of the House of David.
The stone and wording as originally found in Aramaic and in "Paleo-Hebraic" script. "betdavid" (the House of David) is in the yellow box
I say the "finger of God" because of the improbability of this turning up at all, and the precise timing it did - in the midst of the controversy, because it's about time that unsupported skepticism and doubt be exposed for what it is - fraudulent unfaith, and because it sometimes takes God to justify Himself - when He's the only one who can do it. There was a David, he was a King. He had a throne (and some throne it was!), and his most illustrious son is Jesus Christ, the Messiah, who was, indeed, born of the Holy Spirit and of Mary at the first "City of David" - Bethlehem.