During a recent four-week excavation at Shiloh in the West Bank, archaeologists discovered ancient clues that could help them determine if the tabernacle that housed the Ark of the Covenant once stood on that site.
According to the Bible, the Ark of the Covenant was a sacred chest that was crafted by the Israelites according to God’s instructions and that contained the stone tablets on which the Ten Commandments were etched.
The excavation, which occurred from May 21 to June 17 and used the latest archaeological techniques, was conducted by Associates for Biblical Research, a consortium of individuals and universities that are seeking to locate the tabernacle.
In an interview with Fox News, Dr. Scott Stripling, director of excavations at Shiloh and provost at The Bible Seminary in Houston, Texas, said, “We have just begun the process of accumulating evidence but we’re confident that the tabernacle rested at Shiloh.”
“The tabernacle was set up at Shiloh in 1400 B.C. Joshua 18:1 mentions it,” Stripling said, explaining that Shiloh was the site of the tabernacle for approximately 350 years.
Many animal bones were unearthed by archaeologists during the excavation of the northern fortifications of the ancient city. Stripling said the bones might be associated with animal sacrifices held at the sacred site.
“We excavated through a tremendous amount of bone,” Stripling said. “You have 350 years of sacrifices; where do all those bones go?”
“The Bible specifies which animals are sacrificial animals and it also says that they are young animals,” Stripling said. “If the bones match the animals of the Biblical sacrificial system and the type and age specified, then we may be looking at evidence that the tabernacle sat nearby.”
Stripling noted that the Bible has guided him and his team.
“There are some who say the Bible is unreliable,” Stripling said. “We have found it to be very reliable.”
“We’re taking the Bible as a serious historical document, but the evidence is what the evidence is.”
The bones unearthed by Stripling’s team are currently being analyzed by a zoo archaeologist employed by Associates for Biblical Research.
Results from the analysis are expected in several weeks.
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