Archaeology, Main, z430
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Does an inscription on a 3,000-year-old jug validate the Biblical account of the Queen of Sheba?

King Solomon and Queen of Sheba
By Giovanni Demin (1789-1859)/Wikipedia/Public Domain

According to a recent study by archaeologist Daniel Vainstub published in the Jerusalem Journal of Archaeology, there is evidence of a long-standing trade relationship between Sheba and the nation of Israel, Christian Headlines reports.

This in turn validates the Biblical account of the Queen of Sheba coming to visit King Solomon recorded in 1 Kings 10 and 2 Chronicles 9.

In his paper, Vainstub, who is a professor at Israel’s Ben Gurion University, reported about the writing found on a large jug discovered in Jerusalem in 2012. While many believed it was Canaanite, Vainstub said that the wording is actually Sabaean, the language of the country where the Queen of Sheba ruled, located 1,200 miles (ca. 1,931 km) south of Jerusalem in what today is modern Ethiopia and Yemen.

The jug is dated to the reigns of King David and King Solomon. The word simply described the contents of the jug, which was a ladanum, a brown resin obtained from the gum rockrose shrub and was used as an incense and creation of perfume.

While the discovery does not confirm the existence of the Queen of Sheba it does reveal that there was a strong and profitable trade relationship between Israel and the Sabaeans.

“It provides a hook for determining if there is a kernel of historical truth to this biblical account,” Vainstub wrote. “Scholars who answered the question positively even before the extensive new research of South Arabia that had begun in the 1990s … and others who have based their opinions on the data of the last two decades, will find strong support of their opinion in the inscription.”

According to the Biblical accounts, the unnamed Queen had heard of Solomon’s wisdom and decided to visit and ask him a series of questions/riddles to confirm his wisdom.

She travelled to Jerusalem in a large entourage or caravan that included camels and gave Solomon 120 talents of gold and other gifts including the largest quantity of spices ever brought to Jerusalem, precious stones and balsam oil (1 Kings 10:10).

And we see hints of the trade taking place between the two nations as King Solomon in turn gave the Queen all that she desired (1 Kings 10:13).

But many have wondered if a statement made by the Queen of Sheba in verse 9 where she referred to God as Jehovah, indicated that she may have converted to Judaism:

Blessed be the Lord your God who delighted in you to put you on the throne of Israel; because the Lord [Jehovah] loves Israel forever, He made you king, to do justice and righteousness.” (1 Kings 10:9 NASV)

And Jesus seems to confirm this when the Lord spoke of the Queen of the South rising up to condemn the generation of Jews that Jesus was speaking to (Matthew 12:42, Luke 11:31)

Though there are no archaeological inscriptions supporting the existence of the Queen of Sheba, inscriptions in both Assyria and South Arabia do speak of an unnamed Sabaean Queen.

READ: 3,000-Year-Old Pottery Supports Biblical Story of Queen of Sheba, Solomon: Researcher

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