The Babylonian Captivity with Map



The City of Babylon



Babylon or "babilu" means (gate of god). It was one of the most famous cities of the ancient world located in the plain of shinar on the Euphrates River, about 50 miles south of Modern Baghdad. It was the capital of the mighty Babylonian Empire. During the time of Nebuchadnezzar II (605-562 B.C.) who captured Jerusalem, Babylon was at the height of its glory and the most important city of the whole Mesopotamia region. Nebuchadnezzar built palaces, temples, mighty walls and beautiful gateways. The hanging gardens of Babylon were considered one of the wonders of the ancient world.


The Jewish captives lived in towns and villages along the Chebar River and were treated very fairly by the Babylonians. The Jews were allowed to live together in communities, they were allowed to farm and perform other sorts of labor to earn income. Many Jews eventually became wealthy.


Clay tablets were excavated near the Ishtar Gate which indicate that even in captivity Jehoiachin was referred to as the "king of Judah" and he received abundant food supplies from the royal storehouse.


During captivity the Jews were encouraged by the prophet Jeremiah from Jerusalem to take wives, build houses, plant gardens and to take advantage of their situation because they were going to be there for seventy years.


Map of the Persian Empire


Map of the Deportation of Judah



The Babylonian Captivity

Bible History Online

The Story of the Bible

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