Shishak Smiting His Captives
|Did Shishak invade Israel
as a punishment from God over their civil war?
Shishak was the first king of Egypt mentioned by name in the Bible. Egypt knew him as Pharaoh Shoshenq I, founder of the 22nd Dynasty of Egypt and he reigned from 944-924 B.C. After Solomon died the Kingdom of Israel divided in half and 5 years later during the reign of Rehoboam, king of Judah, Pharaoh Shishak invaded Jerusalem. Shishak did not utterly destroy Jerusalem because he was paid an enormous ransom.
The Bible mentions that Shishak marched his troops into the land of Judah and plundered a host of cities including Jerusalem, this has been confirmed by archaeologists. Shishak's own record of his campaign is inscribed on the south wall of the Great Temple of Amon at Karnak in Egypt. In his campaign he presents 156 cities of Judea to his god Amon.
"Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem, and took away the treasures of the house of the LORD, and the treasures of the king's house; he took all: he carried away also the shields of gold which Solomon had made."
2 Chronicles 12:9
The Bible reveals details in 1 Kings 14 and 2 Chronicles 12 about the campaign by Pharoah Shoshenq (referred to as Shishak in the Bible) against King Rehoboam of Judea. During his campaign,
Shishak marched though Judea, then he went north through the Valley of Jezreel. He then moved
north to Beth Shean and finally across the Jordan River eastward. A list of the cities
he sacked during his campaign is preserved in the Karnak Temple in Thebes including the Israelite and Judean cities of
Jerusalem, Gibeon, Megiddo, Beth Shean, Aijalon, and more.
Shishak smiting his prisoners discovery is important in the study of Biblical Archaeology.
The movie Raiders of the Lost Ark created the fictional idea that Shishak had stolen the Ark of the Covenant when he conquered Jerusalem and brought it back to Tanis, Egypt in 980 B.C.
1 Kings 11:40
- Solomon sought therefore to kill Jeroboam. And Jeroboam arose, and fled
into Egypt, unto Shishak king of Egypt, and was in Egypt until
the death of Solomon.
Note: The Great Dakhla Stela mentions Shishak as "Pharaoh Shoshenq".
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