The battle of Jericho: what a great story! I love it. Yet did it really happen? Many people would laugh it off as a fable tale passed down from generations to explain the ruins found near modern-day Jericho; but is there actually some truth to it? If one was to look at the evidence, taking the Bible literally, would the evidence fit? Answers in Genesis/Creation Ministries International did this, and they came to an interesting conclusion.
1. There is evidence for an earthquake (the walls fell down)
2. The city was burnt (The Israelites were ordered to do that and destroy everything)
3. Part of the city wasn’t destroyed (Rahab’s house survived)
4. Artifacts of jars of clay containing wheat (Jericho was destroyed right after the harvest)
Looking through the ruins, signs of an earthquake are seen throughout the area. Obviously one had occurred at Jericho. Joshua 6:20 describes the scene: When the trumpets sounded, the people shouted, and at the sound of the trumpet, when the people gave a loud shout, the wall collapsed; so every man charged straight in, and they took the city. Two other parties have both found rocks – rocks from a wall – piled on top of each other; the perfect scene of an earthquake.
Throughout the site, ash and black rock were found… it looked like a fire had passed through. One could say this could happen anytime, but according to the Bible, after they had taken the city, they burnt it (Joshua 6:24).
While studying the ruins of the original city of Jericho, the archeologists discovered part of the city not fully destroyed. How could this be? Before going into battle, Joshua instructs his men to destroy everything and take nothing – but spare Rahab, because she helped the spies escape(Joshua 6:17). The house was found to be slab against the wall – the perfect position for helping spies escape! Because the house was between the lower and upper walls, it possibly was a lower-class part of the city – which fits Rahab’s position perfectly.
In the book of Joshua, they tell of Jericho’s situation before the attack. A spring bubbled up into the city, so they had no worry of water. The harvest had just come in and been stored – Jericho was ready for a siege! Old jars of clay containing grain were found by archeologists – but why were they there? Normally, any valuable grain found would have been taken by the conquerors, but because God commanded the Israelites to take nothing with them, they left them there. I think that’s yet another reason for the accuracy of the book of Joshua.
Sometimes the science and artifacts we find today doesn’t seem to fit with the Bible. But if we take the Bible literally, and then look at science and the artifacts – it actually makes sense!
Creation Ministries International’s full report can be found at: http://creationontheweb.com/content/view/318/