Make a Donation
About The Author
Holy Day Calendar
Free Online Bibles
Bible Reading Plan
|Get Daily Bible Study on Facebook||Get Daily Bible Study on Twitter Follow @WayneBlank|
Isles of Chittim
by Wayne Blank
The "Isles of Chittim" In Bible History
The history of Cyprus reaches deep into ancient times. Although the pagans regarded it as the birthplace of their non-existent false god Zeus, Cyprus was the scene of numerous events in Bible History, where some Bible translations refer to it by the name Isles of Chittim (or Kittim) e.g. Ezekiel 27:5-6 in the King James Version:
"They have made all thy ship boards of fir trees of Senir: they have taken cedars from Lebanon to make masts for thee. Of the oaks of Bashan have they made thine oars; the company of the Ashurites have made thy benches of ivory, brought out of the isles of Chittim"
As its name indicates, Cyprus has extensive copper deposits which attracted many conquerers to the island over the past 3,000 years. In their turn, Egyptians (see The Ancient Egyptians), Assyrians (see Ancient Empires - Assyria), Phoenicians, Hittites, Greeks (see Ancient Empires - Greece), Romans (see Ancient Empires - Rome), and in more modern times, Turks and British all controlled the island to some degree. It was also taken during the third Crusade (see The Crusades).
During Old Testament times, many Jews had already settled on the island, and many of their descendants were converted by Paul and those associated with him during his travels (see Paul's First Missionary Journey and Paul's Second Missionary Journey and Paul's Third Missionary Journey). Paul's group travelled from Salamis to Paphos on the island, and while at Paphos, Sergius Paulus, the Roman governor of Cyprus became a believer in Jesus Christ (Acts 13:7,12), despite the efforts of Elymas the sorcerer to prevent his conversion. For his wickedness, Elymas was temporarily deprived of his sight by Paul (Acts 13:7-11). Barnabas and Mark were later active there after they separated from Paul (Acts 15:36-39). The Jews and converted Christians were expelled from the island during the reign of emperor Hadrian (reigned 117-138 AD).
Fact Finder: Which apostle was from Cyprus?