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Map of Judea and Southern Israel
Map of Judea and Southern Israel
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Map of the Territory of Judah and Judea in Ancient Israel

Judea and the surrounding territories (Southern Israel). Many of the cities in this map are known from the Old Testament period. Most were important in New Testament times.

This map includes some of the geographical locations within the ancient Judah region in Israel. Judah was the southern part of the Country of Israel, when King Solomon died the kingdom was divided into two parts, "Israel" and "Judah" and the southern part of Israel became Judah. According to Scripture it went from Jaba (Geba) in the North to Beersheba in the South and Jerusalem was part of Judah. The Hebrews from Judah were referred to as Jews (Judahites) and their land was known in Greeks and Latin as "Judea."

Matthew 2:1 - Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem

Judea was part of the Hill Country though it contained four other regions, The coastal plain, the Shephelah (lowlands near the coast), the Negev (southland), and the wilderness. The hill country was a rough stony land with deep ravines rising 2500 feet to the open plateau where Jerusalem sat.

The wilderness was a bleak barren region where the Judean mountains on the east side slope down 4000 feet to the earth's lowest land trench, the Dead Sea region, which was about 1300 feet below sea-level. In New Testament times the Dead Sea Region was the area where, at Qumran, the Essene scribes had gathered or written the Dead Sea Scrolls and established a devout and separated community.

In New Testament times the population of Judea was exclusively Jewish. Adorning the rocky plateau was the city of Jerusalem with the beautiful Temple of Herod (not yet completed) on Mount Zion. The rabbi's used to boldly say, "He who has not seen Jerusalem in its beauty has not seen a beautiful great city in his whole life, and he who has not seen the Second Temple has not seen a handsome building in his life.

On the west side of the Temple Mount stood the palace of Herod, and north of that was the fortress of Antonia with its garrison of Roman auxiliary troops. It was there at the Antonia fortress that Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor had his residence.

JUDEA in Smith's Bible Dictionary

Judaea or Judea
        (from Judah), a territorial division which succeeded to the overthrow of the ancient landmarks of the tribes of Israel and Judah in their respective captivities. The word first occurs Da 5:13 Authorized Version "Jewry," and the first mention of the "province of Judea" is in the book of Ezra, Ezr 5:8 It is alluded to in Ne 11:3 (Authorized Version "Judah"). In the apocryphal books the word "province" is dropped, and throughout them and the New Testament the expressions are "the land of Judea," "Judea." In a wide and more improper sense, the term Judea was sometimes extended to the whole country of the Canaanites, its ancient inhabitants; and even in the Gospels we read of the coasts of Judea "beyond Jordan." Mt 19:1; Mr 10:1 Judea was, in strict language, the name of the third district, west of the Jordan and south of Samaria. It was made a portion of the Roman province of Syria upon the deposition of Archelaus, the ethnarch of Judea, in A.D. 6, and was governed by a procurator, who was subject to the governor of Syria.  Full Article

JUDAEA in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE

JUDAEA
joo-de'-a, ju-de'-a (Ioudaia): The "land of the Jews," the Greco-Roman equivalent of Judah. As most of the Israelites returning from the captivity belonged to the tribe of Judah, they came to be called Jews and their land Judea. In Tobit 1:18 the name is applied to the old kingdom of Judah. For a general description of the physical geography and early history of this region see JUDAH. The limits of this district varied greatly, extending as the Jewish population increased, but in many periods with very indefinite boundaries.
Under the Persian empire, Judea (or Judah) was a district administered by a governor who, like Zerubbabel (Hag 1:14; 2:2), was probably usually a Jew. Even as late as Judas Maccabeus, Hebron and its surroundings--the very heart of old Judah was under the domination of the Edomites, whom, however, Judas conquered (1 Macc 5:65); in the time of his brother Jonathan (145 BC), three tetrarchies of Samaria, Aphaerema, Lydda and Ramathaim, were added to Judea (1 Macc 10:30,38; 11:34); in some passages it is referred to at this time as the "land of Judah" (Iouda) (1 Macc 10:30,33,37). The land was then roughly limited by what may be called the "natural boundaries of Judah" (see JUDAH).
Strabo (xvi.11, 21) extends the name Judea to include practically all Palestine; as does Lk (4:44 m; 23:5; Acts 2:9; 10:37, etc.). In several New Testament references (Mt 4:25; Mk 1:5; 3:7; Lk 5:17; Jn 3:22; Acts 1:8), Judea is contrasted with its capital Jerusalem. The country bordering on the shores of the Dead Sea for some miles inland was known as the Wilderness of Judea (see JUDAH; JESHIMON) (Mt 3:1), or "the wilderness" (Mk 1:4; Lk 3:2); here John the Baptist appeared as a preacher. According to Mt 19:1 (but compare Mk 10:1, where the Revised Version (British and American) has "Judaea and beyond Jordan"), some cities beyond Jordan belonged to Judea. That this was an actual fact we know from Ptolemy (v.16,9) and Josephus (Ant., XII, iv, 11).
According to Josephus (BJ, III, iii, 5), Judea extended from Anuath-Borkaeos (i.e. Khan Berkit near Khan es Saweh, close to the most northerly frontier of Judah as described in JUDAH (which see)) to the village Jordan, possibly Tell `Arad, near Arabia in the South. Its breadth was from Joppa in the West to Jordan in the East. The seacoast also as far north as Ptolemais (`Akka), except Jamnia, Joppa and (according to the Talm) Caesarea, belonged to this province.
After the death of Herod the Great, Archelaus received Judea, Samaria and Idumea as his ethnarchy, but on his deposition Judea was absorbed into the Roman province of Syria, the procurator of which lived at Caesarea.  Full Article

The Bible Mentions a lot Concerning "Judaea"

Luke 3:1 - Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of Ituraea and of the region of Trachonitis, and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene,

Luke 2:4 - And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)

2 Corinthians 1:16 - And to pass by you into Macedonia, and to come again out of Macedonia unto you, and of you to be brought on my way toward Judaea.

Acts 28:21 - And they said unto him, We neither received letters out of Judaea concerning thee, neither any of the brethren that came shewed or spake any harm of thee.

Matthew 2:22 - But when he heard that Archelaus did reign in Judaea in the room of his father Herod, he was afraid to go thither: notwithstanding, being warned of God in a dream, he turned aside into the parts of Galilee:

Luke 6:17 - And he came down with them, and stood in the plain, and the company of his disciples, and a great multitude of people out of all Judaea and Jerusalem, and from the sea coast of Tyre and Sidon, which came to hear him, and to be healed of their diseases;

Acts 8:1 - And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.

Luke 5:17 - And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judaea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was [present] to heal them.

Acts 9:31 - Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.

Luke 1:5 - There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife [was] of the daughters of Aaron, and her name [was] Elisabeth.

Matthew 2:1 - Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,

Mark 10:1 - And he arose from thence, and cometh into the coasts of Judaea by the farther side of Jordan: and the people resort unto him again; and, as he was wont, he taught them again.

Mark 13:14 - But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judaea flee to the mountains:

Acts 1:8 - But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.

Acts 26:20 - But shewed first unto them of Damascus, and at Jerusalem, and throughout all the coasts of Judaea, and [then] to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, and do works meet for repentance.

Acts 2:14 - But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all [ye] that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:

Acts 12:19 - And when Herod had sought for him, and found him not, he examined the keepers, and commanded that [they] should be put to death. And he went down from Judaea to Caesarea, and [there] abode.

1 Thessalonians 2:14 - For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus: for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they [have] of the Jews:

Matthew 19:1 - And it came to pass, [that] when Jesus had finished these sayings, he departed from Galilee, and came into the coasts of Judaea beyond Jordan;

Luke 1:65 - And fear came on all that dwelt round about them: and all these sayings were noised abroad throughout all the hill country of Judaea.

Acts 2:9 - Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia,

Matthew 4:25 - And there followed him great multitudes of people from Galilee, and [from] Decapolis, and [from] Jerusalem, and [from] Judaea, and [from] beyond Jordan.

Mark 1:5 - And there went out unto him all the land of Judaea, and they of Jerusalem, and were all baptized of him in the river of Jordan, confessing their sins.

Luke 21:21 - Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.

John 4:47 - When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judaea into Galilee, he went unto him, and besought him that he would come down, and heal his son: for he was at the point of death.

Acts 10:37 - That word, [I say], ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;

Acts 11:29 - Then the disciples, every man according to his ability, determined to send relief unto the brethren which dwelt in Judaea:

Mark 3:7 - But Jesus withdrew himself with his disciples to the sea: and a great multitude from Galilee followed him, and from Judaea,

John 3:22 - After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the land of Judaea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized.

John 7:3 - His brethren therefore said unto him, Depart hence, and go into Judaea, that thy disciples also may see the works that thou doest.
 

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