Written by: Ken Ham
Article source: harbingersdaily.com

“At that time Hazael king of Syria went up and fought against Gath and took it” (2 Kings 12:17). This short summary of what must have been a fearsome battle against the stronghold of Gath introduces the threat King Hazael posed to Jerusalem, a threat that King Jehoash of Judah avoided by paying Hazael with “sacred gifts.” But, yes, even this minor, one sentence mention of a battle is true historical narrative—it really happened—and it appears it has been confirmed by archaeology!

Israeli scholars used a novel approach to make “a discovery that enables archaeologists to identify burnt materials found in excavations and estimate their firing temperatures.”

This new approach is designed to give researchers a glimpse into ancient mud brick construction methods, but in the process, they affirmed the historicity of the biblical account.

According to this press release, certain scholars in a recent paper doubted that Gath, a stronghold at the time of King Hazael, had been attacked and overtaken—arguing instead that the excavated brick in Gath had been pre-fired before construction and just tumbled down over decades (however, most researchers believe the typical brick-making method for this region prior to the Roman occupation was sun-drying, not kiln-firing, so that would have been an anomaly).

But by applying this novel research method of thermal demagnetization to these bricks, the authors of this new study concluded that, no, the city had indeed been burned down, as the bricks showed evidence of firing temperatures compatible with conflagration rather than a kiln. This new determination is consistent with the Bible’s account of Hazael overtaking Gath.

When it comes to archaeology, researchers should always start with the Bible’s eyewitness account of history.

Scripture was ultimately written by the God who was there, who knows all things, and who never makes a mistake. We should trust his Word over the fallible thoughts of people who weren’t there, don’t know everything, and frequently make mistakes.

Many times, scholars have claimed a person or place mentioned in the Bible didn’t exist. But over time, archaeology has confirmed the Bible’s historical account over and over again.

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Date published: 05/02/2024

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