What We Know About the Philistines

The Bible is understandably hostile to the Philistines, describing them as a pleasure loving, warlike society of pagans ruled by “tyrants” who threatened ancient Israel’s existence. An unscrupulous enemy, the Philistines deployed Delilah and her deceitful charm to rob Samson of his power. In a later period, they slew King Saul and his sons […]

Ancient Jerusalem’s Rural Food Basket
The “new” archaeology looks for an urban center’s agricultural base By Gershon Edelstein, Shimon Gibson

Until recently, archaeology—or at least Near Eastern archaeology—has been regarded primarily as a historical science. Its focus was history and particularly political history—kings and kingdoms, battles and destructions, the rise and fall of civilizations. That focus has now shifted somewhat. It is difficult to put a date on the change because it has occurred […]

John Bright’s New Revision of A History of Israel

The following review of the new third edition of John Bright’s A History of Israel was written by Professor Norman K. Gottwald of New York Theological Seminary. Bright’s History has been a dominant influence in Biblical scholarship for more than 20 years, and Gottwald’s review, written for BAR, is an important analysis of the […]

BAR Jr.: Sherds, Sherds, Sherds

“The remains of the city were found buried under a heavy layer of ash and destruction debris … ”