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Behind the Palace of Caiaphas stood the Tomb of David which is a monument that marks the spot where David's tomb was located. The real spot for the tomb is on the SE hill in David's city. Herod had built the monument as a memorial and as a shelter for those who visited the tombs. The Bible makes it clear that David was buried in the city of David, "So David slept with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David" (1 Kings 2:10). It is a matter of speculation where the real spot was for the tomb of David, whether it was the western hill or on the southeast hill in the city of David.
What we know for certain is that King David was buried in Jerusalem, His sons were buried in Jerusalem, His tomb still existed in 1st century A.D. Jerusalem, as Peter observed in Acts 2:26, as well as Josephus, Cassius Dio, and the Talmud. Herod built a monument for the tomb, but the original spot has not been determined.
Today the traditional tomb of David is located on the western hill of Jerusalem (modern Mt. Zion), just outside the old city.
King David died in 960 B.C. at the age of 70, we know he was 70 years old because 1 Kings 2:11 says he reigned for 40 years and 2 Samuel 5:4 says he began his reign at the age of 30.
thirty years old when he began to reign, [and] he reigned forty years."
-2 Samuel 5:4
"So David slept
with his fathers, and was buried in the city of David. And the days that David
reigned over Israel [were] forty years: seven years reigned he in Hebron, and
thirty and three years reigned he in Jerusalem."
- 1 Kings 2:10-11
"And Samuel said
unto Jesse, Are here all thy children? And he said, There remaineth yet the
youngest, and, behold, he keepeth the sheep. And Samuel said unto Jesse, Send
and fetch him: for we will not sit down till he come hither. And he sent, and
brought him in. Now he was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and
goodly to look to. And the LORD said, Arise, anoint him: for this is he. Then
Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and
the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward."
- 1 Samuel 16:11-13
And Samuel said to
Saul, Thou hast done foolishly: thou hast not kept the commandment of the LORD
thy God, which he commanded thee: for now would the LORD have established thy
kingdom upon Israel for ever. But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the LORD
hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the LORD hath commanded him to be
captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the LORD
- 1 Samuel 13:13-14
Also see the Heart Message about David's Tomb
Also see: The Tomb of David Article
City of David (Tomb)
"Whoever has not seen Jerusalem in its splendor has never seen a fine city."? Babylonian Talmud (Succah, 51b)
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Primary Sources for the Study of First Century Jerusalem: Josephus, The Mishnah, The New Testament, Pliny.
The Jerusalem of Herod the Great
The Jerusalem Jesus knew nowhere near resembled the city David conquered in the tenth century BC. At that time, it had been a small, isolated hill fortress, valued more for its location than its size or splendor. Yet from that time on it was known as the City of David, and the kings of David's dynasty, especially his son Solomon, had enlarged and beautified it.
In the sixth century BC, the army of Nebuchadnezzar leveled Jerusalem and drove its citizens into exile. During the long years of captivity in Babylon, the Jews in exiles' prayers and longings focused on the distant Holy City. But the city rebuilt by the Jews who returned a century later was far inferior to its former splendor. It was, ironically, the hated tyrant Herod the Great who restored Jerusalem to its former grandeur.
In the 33 years of his reign (37-4 B.C.), Herod transformed the city as had no other ruler since Solomon. Building palaces and citadels, a theatre and an amphitheatre, viaducts (bridges) and public monuments. These ambitious building projects, some completed long after his death, were part of the king's single-minded campaign to increase his capital's importance in the eyes of the Roman Empire.
No visitor seeing Jerusalem for the first time could fail to be impressed by its visual splendor. The long, difficult ascent from Jericho to the Holy City ended as the traveler rounded the Mount of Olives, and suddenly caught sight of a vista like few others in the world. Across the Kidron Valley, set among the surrounding hills, was Jerusalem, "the perfection of beauty," in the words of Lamentations, "the joy of all the world."
The view from the Mount of Olives was dominated by the gleaming, gold-embellished Temple which was located in the most holy spot in the Jewish world and really God's world. This was the Lord's earthly dwelling place, He mediated His throne here and raised up a people to perform rituals and ceremonies here that would foreshadow the coming of His Messiah kinsman redeemer who would be the lamb of God, slain for the sins of the whole world.
The Temple stood high above the old City of David, at the center of a gigantic white stone platform.
To the south of the temple was THE LOWER CITY, a group of limestone houses, yellow-brown colored from years of sun and wind. Narrow, unpaved streets and houses that sloped downward toward the Tyropean Valley, which ran through the center of Jerusalem.
Rising upward to the west was THE UPPER CITY, or Zion, where the white marble villas and palaces of the very rich stood out like patches of snow. Two large arched passageways spanned the valley, crossing from the Upper City to the temple.
A high, thick, gray stone wall encircled Jerusalem. It had been damaged, repaired and enlarged over the centuries, and in Jesus' day it was about 4 miles in circumference, bringing about 25,000 people into an area about a square mile. At intervals along the wall were massive gateways. Just inside each gate was a customs station, where publicans collected taxes on all goods entering or leaving the city.
? Bible History Online (http://www.bible-history.com)