Jerusalem 600 BC
Dear Reader and Ancient Traveler,
Welcome to these glimpses of Lehi’s Jerusalem, the world from which Lehi and Sariah, the patriarch and matriarch of the main Book of Mormon peoples, left a little after 600 BC. We hope that you will have an interesting and enjoyable trip back into that world twenty-six hundred years ago as you immerse yourself in the available, fascinating information about that time and place.
As you prepare for this journey, we suggest that you begin by reading the following culturegram, a brief report about the people, geography, politics, emergent history, prevailing customs, and daily life of that country or region. Modern culturegrams, which give answers to frequently asked questions, prepared originally under the direction of the David M. Kennedy Center for International Studies at Brigham Young University, are recognized as popular and useful guides for international travelers. We thought that you might like to know what you might expect to see if you were to travel with us back into Lehi’s world.
The following culturegram of the ancient city of Jerusalem goes beyond the basic data that one would expect to find in an encyclopedia article or travel brochure about the Holy City today. This profile takes you out into the streets of Jerusalem on an introductory guided tour of its many surprising features and exotic sights and sounds. Until a person has actually been to a place, however, it is very difficult to visualize its personality or appreciate the ambience of routine life there. We recommend that you, in preparation for this journey, read especially Philip J. King and Lawrence E. Stager’s Life in Biblical Israel, Roland de Vaux’s Ancient Israel, and Oded Borowski’s Daily Life in Biblical Times.1
We will probably see if we can catch a ride on a small Phoenician ship leaving Spain, but these vessels sail only sporadically. There is no travel agency to book us passage in advance. The sea voyage will be long, uncomfortable, and risky. We may need to lay over at several small ports in North Africa, Sicily, southern Italy, Greece, Asia Minor, Rhodes, and Cyprus. Finally, we hope to arrive safely at either the exotic port of Sidon or the heavily fortified harbor of Tyre.
From our port of arrival, we will need to travel about a hundred miles down one of the caravan roads, picking up either the Way of the Sea or an internal, local road, and eventually climbing up to the highlands in northern Judah, where Jerusalem is located, about twenty-five hundred feet above sea level. On this expedition, you will be traveling much differently from what you are used to.2 Obviously, we have no cars or buses nor modern-day transportation vehicles. Beyond that, you may be surprised by what we do have. Most of us will be riding on a donkey or walking on foot. Riding donkeys is very uncomfortable, so you may prefer to walk. If you are extremely wealthy, we may be able to get a horse for you, but we cannot guarantee this since horses are fairly rare. It may be possible to get a few camels, but we will need to buy them; they are not available for rent.
With luck, we may get an ox-drawn wagon or two. But please travel light. These wagons have poor wooden axles and irregular wheels with no bearings and thus cannot carry many suitcases. Some of the wagons are covered. You will also notice that the harnesses are marginal—mostly just a rope around the animal’s neck. Good harnesses will not be developed until the Middle Ages. Also, because horseback riding is rare, you will find nothing resembling a saddle with stirrups. We will have to learn how to ride these donkeys the same way the ancients did—sit toward the rear of the donkey’s back, grip with your knees, and hold on for dear life. We will have to use our sleeping blankets as saddle pads.
We will look for a caravan and see if we can convince its leaders to let us travel with them. Traveling in a group is a necessity because ancient roads are very dangerous. Even the international roadways can be narrow winding paths mired with mud or dusty and rutted from use. If we are to see paved streets at all, it would be in the city, and, even then, they would be just dirt roads overlaid with stones. We will need help getting through, especially in the event of accidents or breakdowns. Being with a caravan will also protect us from the wild beasts and bandits that are a common threat to all ancient travelers. Under no circumstances can you stray from the path or wander away from the caravan—it is just too dangerous. Our water will be rationed, partly because our daily headway will be slow (about seventeen to twenty-three miles per day) and also because we must carry what we need. Such things as modern convenience stores, gas stations, restaurants, motels, or even drinking fountains are unheard of.
The other important thing for you to know is that much of our travel will be done at night, which helps to alleviate some of the danger from fatigue, heat, or robbers. You may assume that our caravan will be accompanied by armed guards and will be sponsored by a king or high-level aristocrat. Private caravans are very rare because of the cost. As you look around, you will notice that oxen, and not horses, pull the carts that we do have. Using horses as draft animals is not common in the ancient world, except for pulling chariots.
Exhausted after several weeks on the road, we will jubilantly celebrate our safe arrival. Of course, it is still unclear where we will stay. But let us turn our attention to the reason for our journey—namely, trying to understand what has been happening in this turbulent city in recent decades and what is likely to happen here in the near future. As we walk through the city, we will spend the next little while coming to terms with its many interesting features.
These Israelites focus on Jerusalem and commonly refer to their capital city when speaking about their country, calling it the “Land of Jerusalem.” Of course, the very words country and capital city are misnomers in this ancient world. Ancient societies did not view themselves as countries with capital cities, a concept we might find hard to grasp.
Scattered throughout this land are villages whose inhabitants rarely travel outside the village and its environs. However, the law of Moses dictates that they are to travel to Jerusalem for certain feasts and festivals (see Deuteronomy 31:10–11). This directive also contributes to ancient Israel’s focus on Jerusalem.
Even the fabled walls of Jerusalem are not yet that impressive, standing only about fifteen feet high. Those of you familiar with Jerusalem’s walls and gates at the time of Jesus or in medieval times will be surprised by the walls of Lehi’s Jerusalem. They are much smaller than in Jesus’ day, most significantly around the Temple Mount, which has not yet been built up and expanded into a very large platform. Looking down on the city from one of the surrounding hills to the east, you can see the Temple of Solomon, the focal point of the upper city. The temple is smaller than you might have expected, at least in comparison with the Temple of Herod as it appears in most drawings or paintings of Jerusalem. The Temple of Solomon has some gold on it, but not much. Part of the king’s palace complex comprises buildings that descend south down the hill away from the temple. The temple and palace stand in the middle of a courtyard called the great court. The houses inside the walled city are built on the hillsides in a sort of terraced manner. Even the biggest of these homes is not large, although most homes are two stories high. The second story is more like a loft covered by the main roof. Notice also the colors, which are mostly natural. The houses are light tan because they are, by and large, built from local stone with some mud and wood. Inside, wood beams and joists support the roofs. Paint is rarely used.
You will want to take a close look at the gates of the city as we enter through them. Most cities in the ancient world have gates. In this world, gates grant security, protection, and regulation of traffic and serve as venues for conducting trials and important official business. Many cities hold city council meetings and judicial hearings here.4 When we get to the gates, be prepared to see crowds of people and a fair amount of congestion. These areas are not as crowded as downtown freeways at rush hour, but gates in the ancient world are busy centers of activity. Most shopping is done here in a market, in a bazaarlike manner. Nothing is actually “sold.” You first become “friends,” greeting one another in an informal way, saying shalom and possibly shaking hands and patting each other on the shoulder. Of course, you must keep in mind that men and women have little or no contact in public. Then you sit together for a while if you do not know each other already; after this you give what you have (gold, silver, precious things), and the merchant gives you what you have bargained for. As the sons of Lehi learned in their negotiations with Laban, you should be careful what you ask for and how you ask (see 1 Nephi 3:11, 22–24). Do not expect to see any retail prices listed since bartering characterizes their manner of trade. Be sure to keep your money in a secure place.
Away from the bustle of the marketplace, you will soon be struck by how quiet things have become—no radios or loudspeakers, no cars or trucks, no honking horns or blaring sirens, guns, explosions, bells, or any of the usual noises of a modern city are present. In fact, the silence here can be rather uncanny. The sound of a ram’s horn blown by a priest will signal times for prayer, and even without amplification you can hear its distinctive squeal all over town.
Depending on how international you are, it may help to know a little Egyptian, Aramaic, or Greek, probably in that order. Greek is not yet the lingua franca of the eastern Mediterranean, as it will become in about three hundred years, after the conquest of Alexander the Great, and as it will be during the days of Jesus. Aramaic, also in contrast to its role in the days of Jesus, is not spoken widely in this area and does not become prominent in Judah until after the return of the Jews from their exile in Aramaic-speaking Babylon.
Little if any meat will be included in our menus for two reasons. First, meat is expensive in 600 BC and hard to come by. There is no corner market or butcher shop selling the latest cut of beef or a good lamb chop. Second, when meat is eaten, it is usually done in a sacrificial, religious setting, where it is roasted; otherwise, it is boiled. If we are lucky, we may get to sample some fish, but Jerusalem is far from Galilee and the Mediterranean Sea, and this commodity can be hard to come by. Do not be disappointed, however, since plenty of variety is found in the different fruits and vegetables, beans, and olives. Animals are kept for food, including cheese and milk. Actually, the most common milk is goat’s milk. Sheep’s milk is also used, but cow’s milk only rarely. We must quickly drink any milk that we have and not try to store it. Pasteurization is obviously over two thousand years away, and few means exist to keep food cold. This means that almost everything we drink will be lukewarm. We will mostly be drinking juice or wine. Stay away from the water, which is not very clean and could make you sick.
Ancient Israelites store most of their produce in pottery jars, which are placed in special, designated buildings. Often, they store their grain in pits. Before this grain reaches the pit, however, it must be harvested (reaped or picked), transported to the threshing floor, dried, threshed (to separate the grain from the stalks), winnowed and sieved (to separate the grain from the chaff), and then measured. Harvesting was hard, backbreaking work.
Water is always a chief concern for these people. Preserving water for use in the city is of paramount importance. Water is collected from rain and runoff during the rainy seasons in cisterns located underground. Farmers terrace the land to make better use of the rainwater, and this same technique is used in Israel today. Even though ancient Israelites, in living the law of Moses, are cleaner than most other ancient people, this water is not very clean. These cisterns are just holes in the ground and are sometimes lined with clay plaster or some other sealant. Three underground water systems in Jerusalem originate from the Gihon Spring.
Produce is sold in market areas from small stands. People in their own area usually set up a market in the town or village square and run the market privately with the assistance of their families. The farmer conducts his business on a very small scale, selling directly to the consumer without any middleman.
You will recognize a priest by his white robes. Only priests and the very rich can afford such clothing. Imagine what it means for these priests if their robes get stained, as is often the case when they perform their sacrificial duties. With no laundromat or laundry detergent available, stains remain on clothes. This is an additional reason why white cloth is not used much and gives added insight to scriptures that talk about having our robes white or washed white in Christ’s blood (see Alma 5:21). Getting clothes this white is particularly difficult, if not impossible, especially if they are stained. The high-end clothes are not too uncomfortable, though. Skilled weavers are able to make cloth from wool that is not too scratchy.
Hotels—at least like the ones we are used to—do not exist in this world. We sometimes mistakenly think that Mary and Joseph stayed in a motel-like inn at Bethlehem, but where they stayed was certainly no inn by modern standards. Travelers are few and far between in the ancient world and would not support a system of hotels. Instead, people use rooms on the upper level of homes as guestrooms, or groups would “camp” together in what are known as caravanserai (see above), which are most equivalent to large, dense campsites with many different families and groups. Caravanserai are rarely found inside a city. We will be staying at such campsites as we travel to and from Jerusalem.
Additionally, a regular sleep schedule is not as common as today. People may get up in the night to do different things. If the moon is particularly bright, some may even try to do a little work at night. These nocturnal habits mean that many take naps during the day, especially when the weather is the hottest. After dark, oil lamps provide light, but remember that sleeping quarters are shared—if the light is on for one, it is on for all.
Special places outside the cities—usually near certain gates (like the Dung Gate)—are designated as lavatories, but, unfortunately, they are not furnished with toilet paper. Ritual purity and cleanliness are closely related and are all set out by the law of Moses. In a society full of epidemic diseases, famine, and wars and natural calamities such as hailstorms, locusts, and lice, uncleanliness abounds. We can see the divine wisdom in the requirements for cleanliness found in the law of Moses.
Little children spend most of their time playing in the streets around their homes. They do have clay models and dolls to play with, but not many. Notice that many of the younger children are naked, which is typical in this ancient society. (As mentioned before, the hygiene in this ancient setting is not as meticulous as you might want or expect.) As the children get older, their responsibilities around the house increase.
While children are young, their mother provides most of their education at home. When a son is old enough, his father assumes the responsibility to teach him the law of Moses and a trade (see Deuteronomy 6:7; Alma 36–42). Trades are most often passed down through the generations. Rites of passage for young men are common and mirror the present-day bar mitzvah for young Jewish boys. We must remember, however, that in this ancient society, instruction of the law of Moses does not include the Talmud like it does today. In fact, there will be no Talmud until after the third or fourth century AD. Many Israelites, not just the wealthy, learn how to write. However, most teaching is done orally as national traditions and religious stories and practices are passed down. In general, girls remain at home and receive their education from their mothers in areas of housekeeping and learning their duty as wives.
Craftsmen. A variety of different occupations in this society—many located right here in Jerusalem—include millers, bakers, weavers, barbers, potters, fullers, locksmiths, and jewelers. As we travel through this city, try to spot the names given to different streets and quarters. Each quarter of the city specializes in a certain craft; for example, we might see a bakers’ street (see Jeremiah 37:21), a fuller’s field (see Isaiah 7:3), or a goldsmiths’ quarter (see Nehemiah 3:31–32). The surrounding villages each specialize in a particular industry. Heavier trades involve woodworkers, iron founders, and linen workers. These crafts are divided into groups or guilds and are ruled by a father. They are called mishpahoth, implying the members are united in kinship or grouped like families.
Daily wage earners.21 In addition, free men hire themselves for a definite job for a certain time at an agreed wage. Unfortunately, poverty has increased, and more and more Israelites have been forced to this labor. In the early days it was mostly agricultural workers who did this—herdsmen, harvesters, and grape pickers. These workers hire themselves out for a day or by the year. Often these laborers are taken advantage of, with unjust wages paid by those who hire them despite the law stipulating that workmen are to be paid every evening. Much of the land is owned by the king, who then leases the land to workers.
Merchants.22 Other Israelites make their living as merchants. These men essentially work for the king since this type of big business belongs to royalty. Solomon built a fleet in the Red Sea and financed desert caravans.
Slaves.23 Slavery is a reality in the ancient world. Even some Israelites have slaves, although Hebrew slaves are treated differently from foreign slaves. Moreover, slavery in the ancient world is different from our modern, postcolonial ideas. Israelites consider slaves as members of the family; if the household has any slaves, it is usually a small number—only one or two. Certain statutes in the law of Moses protect slaves, at least when society follows the law. According to the law, Israelite slaves are set free after six years of servitude. Sometimes a slave will decline to be freed. His master then pierces his ear, not as a brand but as a symbol of his attachment to the family. The law also protects slaves or servants from harsh treatment or physical abuse. Slaves are also allowed to take part in Israelite religious rites, circumcision, Sabbath observance, sacrificial meals, and religious feasts like Passover.
From 609 to 605, Judah remained under Egyptian control but only while Babylon campaigned in the East, in Armenia. During this time the king, Jehoiakim, remained a vassal of the pharaoh, and the internal situation of Judah was bleak. In addition to Egyptian oppression, Jehoiakim was a ruthless tyrant who disregarded his subjects’ needs and by so doing incurred the wrath of Jeremiah the prophet. The recent reforms of King Josiah were neglected and then opposed as paganism, and immorality ran rampant.
In 605, however, the Babylonians defeated the Egyptians at Carchemish and sent them back to Egypt. Even though Nebuchadnezzar, the Babylonian general, was delayed from marching into Judah, he resumed his campaigns in September 604. In 603, Jehoiakim pledged allegiance to Nebuchadnezzar and became his vassal. Another battle between Egypt and Babylon forced Nebuchadnezzar to return to Babylon and regroup his forces. Foolishly, Jehoiakim decided to rebel against Babylon. In December 598, Jehoiakim died, and his eighteen-year-old son, Jehoiakin, became king. Also in this month, Nebuchadnezzar returned to lay siege on Jerusalem. Within three months the city surrendered. The Babylonians took Jehoiakin and his family to Babylon, and the king’s uncle Zedekiah was set up in his place.25
Obviously, this has been a time of momentous turmoil. Civil wars, international conflict, rising and falling fortunes, and shifting cultural pressures and loyalties have raised anxieties and uncertainties throughout the region. As whole civilizations have faced the prospect of extinction, a great urge to recapture and preserve the records of the past is also evident among these people. In Assyria, scribes have been busily engaged in copying and preserving royal libraries. In Jerusalem, the most precious records have been inscribed on metal plates for safekeeping in the temple treasury, as well as on small silver scrolls that can be worn as amulets for personal protection.
Also, there are commanders of the army, heralds, and commanders of the guards. The mazkir, or herald, is the man who calls, names, reminds, and reports. He is in charge of the palace ceremonies and introduces people to audiences. He reports to the king on the concerns of the people of the country and also passes on to the people the commands of their sovereign.
Men ready to fight assemble in short cloaks called halutsim, which literally means unclothed, or stripped. Each man provides his own simple arms—the usual weapons are swords and slings. The units of the army are based on those of society. The unit is the mishpahah (clan), which in theory provides a contingent of one thousand men, though in fact the number is usually far smaller. When the people take up arms, they are referred to as “the thousands of Israel” because these units are commanded by a leader of a thousand, sar elef.32 These units are composed of smaller groups of one hundred and fifty men. We may be reminded of the powerful Laban, whom Laman and Lemuel describe as a man powerful enough to command fifty (1 Nephi 4:1). One of the king’s duties is to lead his army into battle. Solomon instituted chariots among the Israelite army, but when the kingdom split, the majority of the chariots went to the northern kingdom.
The Babylonian occupation does not stop Judah from rebelling against Babylon at least three times during this period. We can only imagine what the loss of so many young men does to this ancient society.
Outside the temple is the altar of bronze and the sea of bronze supported by twelve bronze bulls. Inside the temple, in the holy place, are the altar of incense, the table of shewbread, and ten candlesticks. The ark of the covenant and two large cherubim are in the holy of holies. This distinguishes this temple from Herod’s temple. After the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians, the ark is lost and the temple destroyed. This Temple Mount will become a heap of rubble. Many Israelites, however, will make pilgrimages to this area to mourn the loss of their beloved temple and to remember better days.
The temple is surrounded on two sides and the back with three-story auxiliary buildings that the priests use on a daily basis; they are not actually part of the temple itself. The temple is 165 feet long and 84 1/2 feet wide, including these outside chambers and storerooms that surround it. Just like modern-day temples, this temple was constructed with the utmost care and quality of materials. The builders used stone and brick overlaid with cedar panels that were beautifully carved and overlaid with gold and other precious metals. Many times during Jerusalem’s history, kings and conquerors have stripped the temple of its precious metals, in many cases to pay tribute to conquering empires, such as the Babylonians. Solomon built this temple as large and as magnificent as ancient conventions allowed.
Each day a number of men may bring their animal sacrifices to the temple to be offered by the priests. The different animals offered are oxen, sheep, and goats, but, for the poor, birds, turtledoves, or pigeons suffice (see Leviticus 1:14). First, the man lays his hands on the victim and blesses it. Then he cuts the throat of the victim some distance from the altar. The actual slaughtering is not the responsibility of the priests and Levites unless the offering is public. Only the actual pouring of the blood on the altar and sacrificial burning are the priests’ responsibility. In addition, the priests get at least some of the meat of the offering to eat. The priests skin and cut up the sacrifice and then place the four quarters of the animal on the altar, where it is burned. You can see the priests at work. Some are eating, some are cleaning, and others are sacrificing. The temple is a busy place nearly every day.
Anyone familiar with the Acts of the Apostles in the New Testament will remember the second holy day, Shavuot or Pentecost, which occurs fifty days after Passover. This festival is agricultural in nature since it marks the beginning of the harvest. As part of the celebration an omer, or a measure of barley, is brought to the temple. On this day, the Jews at Jerusalem also celebrate the giving of the law on Mount Sinai.
The third festival encompasses three holy days. This festival is celebrated in the fall and is made up of Rosh ha-Shanah, or New Year; Yom Kippur, Day of Judgment, or Day of Atonement; and Sukkot, or Feast of Tabernacles. Today, Jews celebrate these days as separate, distinct holidays but here in the ancient world Israelites looked upon them as one large and single season of celebration. During Yom Kippur the priests perform impressive temple rituals. Outside Jerusalem, most Israelites feel the spirit of the holiday as they abstain from food and pleasure and participate in the set prayers recited outside the temple. After Yom Kippur, ancient Israelites begin to build their sukkot, or their booths. This part of the festival is to give thanks for the harvest and to commemorate God’s protection. The king gives a public reading of the law of Moses during this time.
Most of us are familiar with the holiday Hanukkah. This celebration will not develop for another few hundred years. It will come about after the Maccabean war in the second century BC. Another popular holiday among Jews today, Purim (which celebrates Esther’s rescue of the Jews from destruction in Persia), will come about after the exile. The Israelites in Lehi’s day are completely unfamiliar with such holidays.
Regarding the law, the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20 are clearly in effect. Their two tablets are kept in the ark of the covenant in the holy of holies in the temple. A version of the Code of the Covenant, found in Exodus 21–23, along with portions of the Holiness Code in Leviticus 17–26, legal sections found at various places in the book of Numbers (Numbers 5–6, 30–36), and other such normative texts, are also in place.
Just a few years ago, a book of the law, thought to be our book of Deuteronomy, was discovered while Josiah’s men were renovating the temple. This book had been neglected for many years. Its discovery has had a significant impact on legal and religious attitudes in Jerusalem, especially by centralizing worship of Jehovah at the temple in Jerusalem, rooting out apostasy and false prophets, limiting the power of kings, providing charity to the poor, and promising blessings and threatening curses. This law is read out loud to the people at the temple every seventh year.
Largely because of the scarceness of written records, especially out in the villages, custom and the spirit of the law usually prevail over the technical letter of the law. Judges are told to judge righteously and to apply the law faithfully, with fear (or respect) for the Lord, and with a perfect heart. If we get to watch an actual lawsuit, it will probably strike you as quite chaotic and imprecise. Various charges may be thrown around at any time, different parties speak up without clear jurisdictional authority, a judge may be called as a witness, and the lines between divine law and secular powers are very porous.
Still, the legal system works fairly well. Most people in town know each other very well, and thus honor and shame are powerful enforcement mechanisms in the society. The system is efficient: there are no paid judges, no policemen, no prisons, and trials usually last less than a day. The real threat of capital punishment (usually by stoning) keeps most people well within the bounds of the law.
Typically, the marriage ritual at a wedding includes a feast, preceded by a staged meeting between the bride’s and groom’s parties to the accompaniment of music. Births have their own form of ceremony and ritualized singing. Coronations of kings are announced with trumpets and singing. During such a grand event, priests and aristocrats march through the streets of Jerusalem up to the temple, accompanied by singers and other musicians. Of course, the rich can hire people to provide music. This has become one of the trappings of power. The military uses music to marshal its forces and to guide and signal its troops. And, of course, any victories are marked with spontaneous celebration and joy.
Music is also played for religious purposes. Mourning or lamentation and funerals are marked with music, including wailing flutes. Pilgrimages to Jerusalem or other sacred shrines usually include music and singing with special pilgrim songs. Temple choirs and other musicians are employed, and although these musicians were more prominent in the Second Temple period, they exist during this time as well. The musical instruments include harps, lyres, and lutes.
The beginning of the marriage is actually the betrothal. The bride’s father and the groom or his father sign a contract and form a covenant and bond. This period can last for many months or even a couple of years. During this time the bride and bridegroom have no contact. Their first private encounter after the betrothal is when they enter the wedding chamber. But this does not happen until after the wedding festivities. The bride and her entourage make their way from her house to the groom’s household where, after much feasting and music, the husband escorts his bride away to the wedding chamber.
Sincerely, your tour guides,
John W. Welch Robert D. Hunt
- Philip J. King and Lawrence E. Stager, Life in Biblical Israel (Louisville, Ky.: Knox, 2001); Roland de Vaux, Ancient Israel, 2 vols. (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1965); and Oded Borowski, Daily Life in Biblical Times (Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2003).
- King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 114–18, 176–89; King and Stager’s book provides an excellent source for further study of daily life in ancient Israel; see also Barry J. Beitzel, “Travel and Communication,” in Anchor Bible Dictionary, ed. David Noel Freedman (New York: Doubleday, 1992), 6:644–46.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:229–31; Lewis B. Paton, “Jerusalem in Bible Times,” Biblical World 30 (1907): 7–17; Victor H. Matthews, Manners and Customs in the Bible (Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson, 1991), 102–15; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 21–28, 201, 332.
- King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 191, 234; Victor H. Matthews and Don C. Benjamin, Social World of Ancient Israel 1250–587 BCE (Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson, 1993), 123; Matthews, Manners, 106–9.
- Stephen A. Kaufman et al., “Languages (Aramaic),” in Anchor Bible Dictionary, 4:173–205.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:178–94; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 8.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:204–7; Daniel C. Snell, “Trade and Commerce,” in Anchor Bible Dictionary, 6:625–29.
- Edwin Firmage, “Zoology,” in Anchor Bible Dictionary, 6:1120–27; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 19, 33, 63, 67, 85–122; Matthews, Manners, 19–20.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:78; David C. Hopkins, The Highlands of Canaan: Agricultural Life in the Early Iron Age (Sheffield: Almond, 1985), 143, 169, 173, 225, 243, 268; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 86–106, 122–29; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 37–51; Matthews, Manners, 42, 49–50.
- Firmage, “Zoology,” in Anchor Bible Dictionary, 6:1126–28; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 146–63, 259–80; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 41; Matthews, Manners, 117–22.
- King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 85–92.
- James Wells, “Bible Hospitality,” Expository Times 10 (1898–99): 62–64; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 61–63; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 82–95.
- Samuel S. Kottek, “Hygiene and Health Care in the Bible,” in Health and Disease in the Holy Land, ed. Manfred Waserman and Samuel S. Kottek (Lewiston, N.Y.: Mellen, 1996), 37–65; Thomas H. McAlpine, Sleep, Divine and Human, in the Old Testament (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic, 1987), 80–85; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 35; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 41.
- Kottek, “Hygiene and Health Care,” 37–65; Abraham P. Bloch, The Biblical and Historical Background of Jewish Customs and Ceremonies (New York: Ktav, 1980), 61; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 69–71.
- Kottek, “Hygiene and Health Care,” 37–65; Bernard Palmer, ed., Medicine and the Bible (Exeter: Paternoster, 1986), 15–18; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 71–75; Matthews, Manners, 125–26.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:23, 69–75; Bruce V. Malchow, Social Justice in the Hebrew Bible (Collegeville, Minn.: Liturgical, 1996), 11–12; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 5; Matthews, Manners, 115–17.
- King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 4, 21, 36–38, 49.
- Ibid., 49–53; Matthews, Manners, 19–26.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:41–49; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 41–47, 50, 300–317; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 142–54; Matthews, Manners, 73–74.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:77; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 37; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 37–66.
- Léon Epsztein, Social Justice in the Ancient Near East and the People of the Bible, trans. John Bowden (London: SCM, 1983), 118; Malchow, Social Justice, 23.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:78; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 189–95.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:23, 82–90; Malchow, Social Justice, 41; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 199–210; Matthews, Manners, 136–38.
- John Bright, A History of Israel (Philadelphia: Westminster, 1981), 325–28.
- John W. Welch, “They Came from Jerusalem: Some Old World Perspectives on the Book of Mormon,” Ensign, September 1976, 27–29.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:96–99.
- Ibid., 1:139–42.
- Ibid., 1:142.
- Ibid., 1:104–12; Matthews, Manners, 86–102.
- Malchow, Social Justice, 39; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 202–10; see especially picture of Jerusalem during the time of Solomon on page 205.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:220–27; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 239–45; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 162–63; Matthews, Manners, 144–50.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:130; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 96–109; several scholars have suggested that the Hebrew term elef does not necessarily designate literally “thousand” but sometimes refers to a subdivision of a tribe. If this theory is correct, it may be one explanation for some of the astounding and in some cases unrealistically high numbers found in the biblical accounts; see for example King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 240–41.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:220–27; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 163, 223–58.
- Carol Meyers, “Temple, Jerusalem,” in Anchor Bible Dictionary, 6:355–58; Paton, “Jerusalem in Bible Times,” 7–17; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 332–37; Matthews, Manners, 141–44.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 2:416–23, 468; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 46, 319–63; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 187–98.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 2:480; Bloch, Jewish Customs, 111–18; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 353–63.
- John W. Welch and Stephen D. Ricks, eds., King Benjamin’s Speech: “That Ye May Learn Wisdom” (Provo, Utah: FARMS, 1998), 148–59, 190–91; Bloch, Jewish Customs, 141–46, 163–69, 181–83, 245, 295; De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 2:484–506; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 353–63; Matthews, Manners, 138–41.
- James W. Watts, Reading Law: The Rhetorical Shaping of the Pentateuch (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic, 1999), 16–29.
- Ivor H. Jones, “Music and Musical Instruments,” in Anchor Bible Dictionary, 4:931–33; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 285–300; Matthews, Manners, 123–25.
- King and Stager, Biblical Life, 54–57; Matthews and Benjamin, Social World, 13–17; Matthews, Manners, 72–73.
- De Vaux, Ancient Israel, 1:56–58; King and Stager, Biblical Israel, 363–81; Matthews, Manners, 127–30.