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Early Dig Season at Tel Burna

Early Dig Season at Tel Burna


The Tel Burna Excavation Project posted information this morning on their Spring Dig Season. This is a little unusual in that most dig sites only dig during the summer months, mostly due to finances and schedules. But, they will be digging at Tel Burna in about a week. Tel Burna is one of the possible locations of the Biblical site of Libnah. The tel is located about a mile or so north of Beit Guvrin in the Shephelah.

When Jehoram was king of Judah, the inhabitants of Libnah revolted against the king because he did not follow God.

So Edom revolted from the rule of Judah to this day. At that time Libnah also revolted from his rule, because he had forsaken the Lord, the God of his fathers. - 2 Chronicles 21:10

The image at the top of this post is of Tel Burna. I took this picture in September 2012. NOTE: If you are reading this post from an email, you might need to click on the title to view the post from the web page.

Tel Burna

Tel Burna, located in the Shephelah, is one of the possible locations of Biblical Libnah.Normally, archaeological excavations in Israel take place in the summer months since their activity is primarily driven by university professors and students. However, a couple of days ago, I noticed that a Spring session has started at Tel Burna. Tel Burna is located in the region of Israel that we know of as the Shephelah. During the time of the United Kingdom, this area served as a boundary between the Israelites and the Philistines. Tel Burna is recognized by a number of scholars as the probable location of the Biblical town of Libnah. (Another possibility is Tel Zayit, which sits about 3 kilometers, or 2 miles, due west of Tel Burna.)

How many events can you name that are associated with Libnah? Let us name a few:

Upon entering the land of Canaan, Joshua fought against the city.

Then Joshua passed from Makkedah, and all Israel with him, to Libnah; and they fought against Libnah. - Joshua 10:29

After the conquest, it was one of the cities given to the children of Aaron.

Thus to the children of Aaron the priest they gave Hebron with its common-land (a city of refuge for the slayer), Libnah with its common-land, Jattir with its common-land, Eshtemoa with its common-land, Holon with its common-land, Debir with its common-land, Ain with its common-land, Juttah with its common-land, and Beth Shemesh with its common-land: nine cities from those two tribes; and from the tribe of Benjamin, Gibeon with its common-land, Geba with its common-land, Anathoth with its common-land, and Almon with its common-land: four cities. All the cities of the children of Aaron, the priests, were thirteen cities with their common-lands. - Joshua 21:13-19

King Josiah of Judah married Hamutal, who was from Libnah.

Jehoahaz was twenty-three years old when he became king, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. - 2 Kings 23:31

God killed 185,000 Assyrians who under the command of King Sennacherib very near Libnah.

Then the Rabshakeh returned, and found the king of Assyria warring against Libnah, for he heard that he had departed from Lachish. - Isaiah 37:8

To find Tel Burna on a map, it is located at 31.629495, 34.873261.