In yet another remarkable discovery, archaeologists in Israel say they have may have found an artifact that bears the signature of the prophet Isaiah. The discovery provides not only another stunning confirmation of the Biblical account, but also confirms the close relationship that Isaiah had with faithful King Hezekiah in the Old Testament account. It also gives credence to the true location of the Temple Mount – which is not the Dome of The Rock. This discovery is likely to be of interest to many historians and students alike, enrolled on courses like those offered by Norwich University.
The ‘Signature’ of The Prophet Isaiah
According to reports:
“We found the eighth-century B.C.E. seal mark that may have been made by the prophet Isaiah himself only 10 feet away from where we earlier discovered the highly-publicized bulla of King Hezekiah of Judah,” said Dr. Eilat Mazar of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, in a statement.
Dr. Mazar led the team that found the seal mark linked to the Biblical prophet. The artifact was found among undisturbed Iron Age remains outside an ancient royal bakery.
The half-inch wide oval-shaped piece of clay is inscribed with the name Yesha’yah[u] (Isaiah) in ancient Hebrew script. This is followed by the word nvy, the end of which is slightly damaged. As a result, experts do not know whether the word ended with the Hebrew letteraleph. That letter “would have resulted in the Hebrew word for ‘prophet’ and would have definitively identified the seal as the signature of the prophet Isaiah,” explained Dr. Mazar. “The absence of this final letter, however, requires that we leave open the possibility that it could just be the name Navi.”
“The name of Isaiah, however, is clear,” she added.” (source)
A Prophet To A Great King
The prophet Isaiah preached and delivered God’s Word during the reign of King Hezekiah, whom the Bible identifies as one of the most God-fearing rulers of the Southern Kingdom of Judah:
“Now it came to pass in the third year of Hoshea son of Elah king of Israel, that Hezekiah the son of Ahaz king of Judah began to reign…And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord, according to all that David his father did. He removed the high places, and brake the images, and cut down the groves, and brake in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made: for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan. He trusted in the Lord God of Israel; so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him.” – 2 Kings 18:1-5.
Hezekiah witnessed the conquest and destruction of the Northern Kingdom of Israel (home to 10 of the 12 tribes) at the hands of the mighty Assyrian empire. The Southern Kingdom has managed to remain at peace with the Assyrians by paying tribute or “protection money.” However, under King Hezekiah’s reign, that would come to an end. He “rebelled against the king of Assyria, and served him not.”
This led to the Assyrian king Sennacherib, son of Sargon II to immediately launch an attack against Judah taking some of its border “unfenced cities.” The Assyrian king then sent a delegation to Jerusalem. Standing before the people, the Assyrian emissaries tried to intimidate the Israelites into abandoning their faith in God and the king:
“Thus saith the king, Let not Hezekiah deceive you: for he shall not be able to deliver you out of his hand: Neither let Hezekiah make you trust in the Lord, saying, The Lord will surely deliver us, and this city shall not be delivered into the hand of the king of Assyria. Hearken not to Hezekiah: for thus saith the king of Assyria, Make an agreement with me by a present, and come out to me, and then eat ye every man of his own vine, and every one of his fig tree, and drink ye every one the waters of his cistern: Until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards, a land of oil olive and of honey, that ye may live, and not die: and hearken not unto Hezekiah, when he persuadeth you, saying, The Lord will deliver us.” – 2 Kings 18:29-32.
In complete arrogance, the King’s messengers attacked the faith of the Jewish people and blasphemed God. On top of this, neighboring nations also sent letters to Hezekiah, urging him to surrender before Sennacherib destroyed Jerusalem and the Southern Kingdom.
With hundreds of thousands of enemy troops at his gates and no allies in sight, the situation looked bleak. Which is precisely why Hezekiah went to The Lord:
“And Hezekiah received the letter of the hand of the messengers, and read it: and Hezekiah went up into the house of the Lord, and spread it before the Lord. And Hezekiah prayed before the Lord, and said, O Lord God of Israel, which dwellest between the cherubims, thou art the God, even thou alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; thou hast made heaven and earth. Lord, bow down thine ear, and hear: open, Lord, thine eyes, and see: and hear the words of Sennacherib, which hath sent him to reproach the living God. Of a truth, Lord, the kings of Assyria have destroyed the nations and their lands,
And have cast their gods into the fire: for they were no gods, but the work of men’s hands, wood and stone: therefore they have destroyed them. Now therefore, O Lord our God, I beseech thee, save thou us out of his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that thou art the Lord God, even thou only.” – 2 Kings 19:14-18.
At this time the King, unlike the many rulers of Judah and Israel before him, relied on God’s prophet. The Bible says that “…for this cause Hezekiah the king, and the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz, prayed and cried to heaven.” (2 Chronicles 32:20). The king and prophet prayed together to The Lord for deliverance. It was Isaiah who delivered God’s response and emboldened the faith of the king with the promises of The Lord. Isaiah told King Hezekiah that the Assyrians would never so much as fire a bow or come near the city of Jerusalem:
“Then Isaiah the son of Amoz sent to Hezekiah, saying, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, That which thou hast prayed to me against Sennacherib king of Assyria I have heard. This is the word that the Lord hath spoken concerning him; The virgin the daughter of Zion hath despised thee, and laughed thee to scorn; the daughter of Jerusalem hath shaken her head at thee. Whom hast thou reproached and blasphemed? and against whom hast thou exalted thy voice, and lifted up thine eyes on high? even against the Holy One of Israel.” – 2 Kings 19:20-22.
Notice that in the passage above, Isaiah sent a message to the king. This would be the purpose of a bullae or seal – as it guaranteed the authenticity of the document to the reader. God Himself was going to fight the armies of Assyria: “For I will defend this city, to save it, for mine own sake, and for my servant David’s sake.” (2 Kings 19:34).
From this victory onward, Hezekiah and Isaiah worked as a team to honor God and follow His will for the nation. When Hezekiah was on his deathbed, he pleaded with Isaiah to deliver his prayer for health to The Lord and God responded by extending his life anther 15 years.
Thus it should be no surprise that the Isaiah Seal was found in the same area archaeologists discovered the seal of King Hezekiah. This seal was confirmed as it read: “Belonging to Hezekiah, (son of) Ahaz, king of Judah.” (source).
Discoveries Confirm The True Location Of The Temple – The City of David
In our article “Secret Of The Lost Temple: The Real Location Of Solomon’s Temple Revealed”Beginning And End detailed that the current Temple Mount, home to the Dome of The Rock and The Western Wall, is not the Biblical location of the Temple of Solomon.
The real temple location is in the City of David – the precise location where both King Hezekiah’s and the potential seal of Isaiah were discovered. In 2005, the seals of two high court officials of King Zedekiah were discovered in the City of David as well. This is where the kings lived and where the temple was located. For more on this shocking discovery see our article here.
Once again – The Bible Is Proven True
The possible Isaiah seal is just one of numerous archaeologist discoveries that have confirmed the truth and accuracy of the Biblical historical record. It is truly an amazing that science can now even examine charred remains like that of a 1,500-year old Leviticus scroll and confirm that the words of the Bible have not changed in almost 2 millennia. The Last Supper Papyrus, also dating back 1,500 years, confirmed the words of The Lord Jesus Christ at the Passover supper before His crucifixion. All these finds are truly amazing – but it is God’s Word that we can rely on for salvation. And that takes faith – believing even when we do not see – to receive.
If you are a Christian celebrate these discoveries and continue to share God’s Word with others. And if you are not, know that as technology improves, science will only continue to confirm the words of the Holy Bible. But that will not save you or provide forgiveness of sins. It takes faith in The Lord Jesus Christ and His sacrifice on the cross. Read the Bible with an open heart and the luxury of knowing that the greatest scientists and researchers continue to provide confirmations of what believers have known to be true for centuries.