Pool of Shiloam Excavation Report Essay
This report is to give information on the excavations of the Pool of Siloam and how it relates to the Bible. The Pool of Siloam is an important site as it helps to prove the New Testament story of the healing of the blind man in Jesus’ time at this pool. It is a historical site as it is specifically mentioned by name in the Bible, not some random pool that the blind man was sent to.
Obviously this pool had significance to be mentioned by name – and the discovery of this site was a great discovery in that it is in my opinion a major part of biblical history not only in the New Testament but also in the Old Testament where it is referred to on more than one occasion. Historical Background The Pool of Siloam was in biblical times – particularly in the time of Jesus was the place where a blind man was healed when Jesus told the blind man to wash in the pool of Siloam after he put mud and spittle in his eyes.
“In the 400’s AD, a church was built above a pool attached to Hezekiah’s tunnel to commemorate the miracle of Jesus and the blind man. Until recently, this was considered the traditional site for the Pool of Siloam during the time of Christ. ” Archaeologists have found evidence of ancient, rock-hewn water systems in and near Jerusalem. One fact about the pool of Siloam that should be used in determining the true identity of the pool of Siloam is the fact that “the pool of Jesus’ time was built early in the first century B. C. and was destroyed by the future emperor Titus about A. D. 70. ”
The true pool of Siloam was first found in Jerusalem in 2004, while workers were repairing sewage pipes, they found a freshwater reservoir that was believed to be a major gathering place for ancient Jews and where Jesus cured the blind man. During this excavation they discovered ancient steps near the mouth excavate this area and by 2005 they believed that they actually found the actual pool of Jesus’ time. Pieces of pottery that was excavated from this site indicates that this was indeed the pool of Siloam that was used during the first century.
““According to Hershel Shanks, editor of Biblical Archeology Review, the pool was fed by the now famous Hezekiah’s tunnel and is “a much grander affair” than archaeologists previously believed, with three tiers of stone stairs allowing easy access to the water. ”ancient water tunnel. Many scholars have said that the Pool of Siloam never existed but rather it was used by John as a religious conceit to illustrate a point, said a New Testament scholar named James H. Charlesworth of the Princeton Theological Seminary.
Now we have found the Pool of Siloam…exactly where John said it was. ” Objectives of current excavation One of the objectives of the current excavation of 2005, was to prove the location of the pool of Siloam that was used during Jesus’ time. Other objectives would include understanding its date, size and other important details as it relates to the Bible. Finding evidence would establish the accuracy of the scriptures as it relates to the famous Pool of Siloam mentioned in the bible – the healing that took place there, when Jesus healed the blind man.
Another objective would be to discover or uncover more and possible the complete pool – that a clearer picture of what the pool looked like could be drawn. Progress at the site Some of the progress at this site is revealed in excavations that was done in 2007 – where they discovered a series of stone steps leading northwest in the direction of the Temple and they found drain holes cut into the stone pavement around the Pool of Siloam. It was later announced that excavations had shown the drain tunnel leading up to the area of the Western wall.
At this time, it is unknown whether this drain connected to the drain tunnel. A large section of steps were revealed in 2004, but work was hindered on one side by the drainage channel. The corner of the steps is visible but at this point, no other corners have been revealed. In 2005, more of the pool was revealed than ever before when the drainage channel had been moved and the earth re-excavated. In 2006, excavations continued and on the northern and southern ends of the pool more sections were revealed.
On the northern end there were several shafts that revealed large paving stones and on the southern end a large wall and a section of the pool from the Old Testament period was uncovered. Altogether about 20 steps (4 sets of 5 each) have been excavated leading from street level into the pool. There is hope of more excavations in the future. Significance of discoveries to Biblical Study Discovery of the pool of Siloam is significant because it proves several scriptures in the Bible not only as it relates to the New Testament where the pool of Siloam is mentioned in Jesus’ time but also many others in the Old Testament.
The waters of Siloam (Shiloah in Hebrew) are mentioned by the prophet Isaiah in Isaiah 8:6 and also in Nehemiah where it tells us that Shallun the son of Col-hozen, the ruler of part of Mizpah rebuilt the wall of the pool of Shiloah. Even though the Pool of Siloam from the Old Testament hasn’t been found – the pool from the New Testament that was found gives indication that since this pool was found that there is a possibility that the one in mentioned in the Old Testament may have been in the same location. Of course this has not been proven as to date.
For Christians, this pool has special significance in that it is mentioned in the gospel of John as the location where Jesus sent “a man blind from birth” in order to complete his healing. Conclusion: The excavations of the pool of Siloam have been successful in determining the true identity of the pool in Jesus’ time. It provides us prove of the historical accuracy of the Bible. There is so much more information that can be discovered in the future if excavations are continued. It is truly amazing to learn about what has been discovered and the significance these discoveries have to the Bible.
Biblical archaeology is very important and the more that is done the more we learn about the historicity of the Bible but also the more that is found the stronger the evidence gets to proving the word of God as being true and not a fairy tale. I believe that Bible archaeology should be used to prove the bible not to disprove the bible. It is amazing that even after discoveries are made that people still try to disprove the Bible by trying to disprove the discoveries as real and authentic. But I guess that to prove they are real and authentic they must first be proved that they are false – then the only prove they can be then is real.