"Psalm 121"

by Jim
(Isle of Bute)

I came across your site by accident when following up on a discussion on trying to find the true location of Biblical Zoar (Bela), for the Byzantine-era Madaba map does not convince me that the Arabian port town it calls Zoara is the place mentioned in Genesis and Deuteronomy, or in Isaiah or Jeremiah for that matter. I was looking for information on ancient trade routes connecting the King's Highway. Then I noticed that your comment re Genesis 13: 14-15 is inaccurate: Abram had not relocated to Mamre Genesis 13: 18 when the Lord showed him the land his descendants would inherit - he was still camped between Bethel and Ai Genesis 13: 3-4. Consequently, there is no confusion on the issue of who would inherit Moab, as would have been the case if he was on Mount Hebron. Moreover, I think that you have inaccurately located Hazezon Tamar En Gedi according to 2 Chronicles 20: 2 and Sodom on your map, because you have assumed that the Valley of Siddim was south of the Great Salt Sea. A clue to the clarification of this problem is indicated in the old Madaba map of the region: the levels of the Sea go up and down over the centuries. At the time the map was made both sides of the Sea had wide coastal strips, and this may also have been the case in Abram's time. So the Elamite confederation army possibly attacked Hazezon Tamar from the Salt Sea coast, and then proceeded north to confront the allied armies of the Cities of the Plain, who would try to keep them contained - much as Biblical archaeologist Steven Collins argues. The Valley of Siddim probably referred to the DST rift valley section containing a somewhat low-water-level Great Salt Sea. You asked for comments on your website - I have complied.

May God guide our thoughts aright, especially when we consider the narratives in His Holy Book.

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