New clues: Could the Ark of the Covenant be hidden inside King's Solomon's mines?
New translation of old texts makes for fresh discussion.
A British professor has translated the Hebrew "Treatise of the Vessels" which lists the treasures of King Solomon. Among the list is the Ark of the Covenant.
Could the Ark be hidden in a the sealed mines of King Solomon? Who would look for it in an ancient and deserted copper mine?
According to the Daily Mail, the treasures are listed, but apparently were dispersed long ago.
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Unfortunately, the text itself contains a number of inconsistencies and the oldest example of the work dates back to the 16th century, although the story is at least a couple hundred years older. Despite the 15th century pedigree, the story is far removed from the actual events it describes, which took place 600 years before the birth of Christ.
This means the entire story is likely a work of fiction.
Despite the fictional turn of the story, in which the treasures of Solomon are saved from plundering Babylonians through hiding and angelic intervention, the story itself is based on widely accepted historical fact.
For example, the Ten Commandments are a legendary work of ancient law, and were almost certainly inscribed by God as it says in the book of Exodus. Those tablets would have been considered holy relics, just as Exodus suggests, and they would have been carefully stored.
We know from the layout of the ancient temple in Jerusalem, that there was a place for the Ark known as the Holy of Holies, a room where the high priest of Israel entered only once a year, on Yom Kippur. From this corroborating evidence, we conclude the Ark was real but at some point disappeared.
It may have been carried away by the Babylonians, but other stories suggest it was saved and hidden and remains hidden to this day.
Legends say the Ark could be in Ethiopia, the Middle East, and even in the United States! The Treatise of the Vessels suggests the Ark was taken to heaven by angels.
What is certain is that Solomon was immensely wealthy, that he built the Temple which housed the Ark, and that he controlled mining operations that were the envy of the fertile crescent. Historians have recently discovered that Solomon presided over exceptionally wealthy copper mines as well as smaller mines yielding gold and silver.
Of course, readers of the Bible have always known this. What's of note is how historians are proving the veracity of Biblical accounts through their research and learning for themselves that despite their academic hubris, the Bible is far from a collection of fairy tales. Instead, it is increasingly being demonstrated as a legitimate historical work containing accurate information.
There's one final implication behind these facts. The treasures of Solomon are still out there, somewhere, in some form. Were they buried? Were the mines sealed to be rediscovered and reopened later? Where did the Ark go? Massive caches of gold and silver do not simply disappear but instead they remain, even if they are melted into ingots or hammered into jewelry. Tracking down these treasures remains an exercise for historians and archeologists, and those with a sense of true adventure. Sooner or later, something more will be learned and we will come another step closer to solving the mystery of the Ark and Solomon's treasures.
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