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Jewry: Fake and truth in the Old Testament (OT) according to documents and excavations

New identity by new Jewish history by help of chronology and archaeological research

39. Yehud province: new structure of settlements and the population after coming back of the banned

by Michael Palomino (2006 / 2010)



from: Israel Finkelstein / Neil A. Silberman: The Bible unearthed. Archeology's New Vision of Ancient Israel and the Origin of Its Sacred Texts; The Free Press, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc., 2001; German edition has got the title "No trombones before Jericho" (orig. German: "Keine Posaunen vor Jericho"): edition C.H.Beck oHG, Munich 2002;

Here in this analysis is used the German version "Keine Posaunen vor Jericho" of DTV, Munich 2004, second edition of 2005. All page indications refer to the German version. I hope the page numbers are not very different.

The return of the banned and an alleged new rise of the economy

AT claims:
-- according to the book of Ezra in chapter 2 and in the book of Nehemiah in chapter 7 almost 50,000 Jews are coming back from the ban to the Yehud province
-- with this also a new rise of the economy is said having connected
-- and it's also said that there was a jump of the population in the highlands with this (p.329).

The new southern borderline of Yehud because of "Idumea"

By the occupation of the Edomites and the newly founded territory of "Idumea" the southern border has moved to the North. The new frontier is between the towns of Bet-Zur and Hebron now, whereas Hebron is not a part of the Yehud province any more (p.334).

Yehud province: There is a governor and priesthood - no king any more

A kingdom is not installed any more (p.331). The province of Yehud is ruled by governors and priests which are proclaimed. The temple and the temple community is the new hot spot for the Jewish identity. There is no royal court any more. The social position of the priests is rising and are writing new books, the books of the priests (P) (p.332).

According to Finkelstein / Silberman it's possible that the invented migration of the faked patriarch of Abraham and the faked exodus of Egypt were loved topics in the sermons of the priests [and are loved topics in the Christian churches until today] (p.334).

What says archeology about the banned and their return?

According to Finkelstein / Silberman the number of 50,000 returning Jews from the Babylonian ban is a wild exaggeration. The total population in the tiny Yehud province is about 30,000 during the 5th and 4th century B.C. This population is building now the identity of later Jewry (p.329).

[So, Yehud province is as big as the town of Uster (2005) or a little less big as Gibraltar].

The returnees are settling around Jerusalem. They are adherents of the "1 god movement", and in sociology and in politics they are better formed and because of this they are higher rated than the native population. Tanks of the "holy books" they have survived the ban and have conserved their identity to be Jewish (p.331).

[But this identity is very wrong, but they don't want to change].

Now there is a takeover of power by the returnees:

-- the returning priests are taking over the leading role in Yehud province (p.331-332) because the relationships to Babylonia also give political power to the returnees (p.331)

-- and because Babylonia did not settle foreign deportees in Yehud, so the returnees have the whole power immediately (p.331).

The alleged new temple and the discrimination of the population from the ex northern Reich of Israel

OT claims:
-- two men, Sheshbazzar and Serubbabel are said having leaded the first group of returnees, and both are said having become governor of Yehud province (Ezra 5,14;Haggai 1,1) (p.331)


-- under the leadership of Sheshbazzar a first group of banned is returning to Jerusalem with temple treasuries which were robbed by Nebuchadnezzar (p.320)

[robbed from a "first temple" which had never existed]

-- Sheshbazzar is said having laid the new base for a new temple, he is said having been the first "ruler of Judah" (Ezra 1,8) (p.331)

-- some years later there is said having arrived a second wave of returnees to Jerusalem under it's leader Jehoshuah, the son of Jozadaus and of Serubbabel, a grandchild of Jeconiah (p.320)

-- they are said having built an altar and having celebrated the Passover Feast of Tabernacles (book of Ezra) (p.320)

-- the population of the ex northern kingdom of Israel is said having requested Serubbabel to help with the construction of the temple, but the priests Jehoshuah and Serubbabel are said having blocked any collaboration (Ezra 4,3) (p.320)

-- the ex banned mean that they would possess a divine privilege now by the ban that they had suffered, and they mean having the right to determine the character of the Jewish "1 god belief" (p.320)

-- then the "folks of the countryside" from the ex northern kingdom of Israel is said having written a letter to the king of Babylonia with the claim that the returnees would reconstruct "the rebellious and evil town again" in Israel, and the people of the northern kingdom are said having uttered the prophecy that the town of Jerusalem will refuse to pay their taxes again and will cause new damage bringing harm to Persia up to the Euphrates river (Ezra 4,12-16) (p.320)

-- and by this the king of Babylonia is said having prohibited all further temple complexes, but Serubbabel and Jehoshuah are said having continued their works with the temple (p.320)

-- then the Persian governor is said having inspected Jerusalem himself and having reported this to the new king Darius with the request for a royal decision (p.321)

-- king Darius of Persia is said having permitted the further construction of the temple complex and is said having assured even the financing and the punishment of the enemies of the temple when there would be any action against the temple again (book of Ezra) (p.321).

Documents and archeology about the returnees

Some scientists claim that Sheshbazzar had been Shenazzar (1st book of chronicle 3,18), a heir of David [remote grade], perhaps he had even been the son of Jeconiah [then this son would have spread by a secret relation] (p.331).

But suddenly Serubbabel is not mentioned any more in the OT. According to Finkelstein / Silberman it could be that Serubbabel was too powerful in the province of Yehud and by this was called back [or was eliminated] (p.331).

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