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Saturday, December 9 2017

Hometowns: Jericho

"And they came to Jericho: and as He went out of Jericho with His disciples and a great number of people"

Jericho is one of the most-ancient cities of human history. Located below sea level in the Jordan River Valley, north of the Dead Sea (see What Does The Bible Call The Dead Sea?), Jericho was documented early in Bible history as "the city of palm trees."

"34:3 And the south, and the plain of the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees, unto Zoar." (Deuteronomy 34:3 KJV)


Jericho has been held by a succession of world empires that have presumed ownership of the land of Israel (see The Empires Of Bible History And Prophecy).

After the Assyrians (see Biblical Eras: The Lost Ten Tribes Of Israel - Why?), the Babylonians (see Biblical Eras: Babylon - Back To The Beginning) and the Persians (see The Prophecies Of Cyrus of Persia), the Greeks under Alexander the Great (see Daniel 8: The Ram And He Goat Of Persia And Greece) ruled Jericho.

After Alexander's early death, the Greek/Seleucids of Syria held it until the Maccabees overthrew them in response to the original "abomination of desolation" (see Biblical Eras: The Greeks, The Abomination Of Desolation And The Maccabees). Then followed the Greek/Ptolemies of Egypt who, in the time of Cleopatra (see The Cleopatra Connection), lost Jericho to the Romans who controlled it during the New Testament record era (see The Roman Emperors: Julius Caesar and The Roman Emperors: Augustus).

The Ottoman Empire held Jericho, and much of north Africa and the Middle East, until the end of the First World War (1914-1918; see The Assassination That Triggered Two World Wars) when the British took control under the UN Mandate (see A History Of Jerusalem: The British Mandate).

In the present era, Jericho has been contested between "Israel" (which is today actually only the return of the people of the Kingdom of Judah; see Biblical Eras: How Did Judah Become Known As Israel?) and the "Palestinians" ("Palestine" is merely the English pronunciation/rendering of "Philistine"; see Where Is Palestine?).

Approaching Jericho

The most-famous resident of Jericho was Rahab at the time that the Israelites were commanded by the LORD to cross the Jordan River into the land that the LORD promised to the Messianic line of Abraham - for the benefit of all people (see the Fact Finder question below).

The Messiah taught in Jericho from which many of the people of the rebuilt city became believers in the LORD (see Jesus In Jericho). Among them was "blind Bartimaeus."

"10:46 And they came to Jericho: and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging. 10:47 And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me.

10:48 And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me.

10:49 And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called.

And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee. 10:50 And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus.

10:51 And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee?

The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight.

10:52 And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way." (Mark 10:46-52 KJV)

Another convert was "Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans."

"19:1 And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. 19:2 And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans, and he was rich. 19:3 And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press, because he was little of stature. 19:4 And he ran before, and climbed up into a sycomore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way.

19:5 And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house. 19:6 And he made haste, and came down, and received him joyfully.

19:7 And when they saw it, they all murmured, saying, That he was gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner.

19:8 And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.

19:9 And Jesus said unto him, This day is salvation come to this house, forsomuch as he also is a son of Abraham. 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost." (Luke 19:1-10 KJV)

Fact Finder: Why did Rahab and her family survive the destruction of Jericho?
See Rahab Of Jericho and The Fall Of Jericho

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This Day In History, December 9

480: Odoacer, the first Germanic (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation) king of Italy, occupied Dalmatia and established his political power with the co-operation of the Roman Senate.

536: Flavius Belisarius (most-often known simply as "Belisarius"), a general of the Eastern (or "Byzantine") Roman Empire, captured Rome.

Byzantine Empire

1625: The Treaty of the Hague was signed under which England and the Netherlands agreed to subsidize Christian IV of Denmark in his campaign in Germany.

1755: The first post office in Canada opened, in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

1824: The Battle of Ayacucho, during the Latin-American war of independence; an anti-Spain republican rebel victory over royalists on the high plateau near Ayacucho, Peru.

1868: W.E. Gladstone became British Prime Minister for the first of his four terms.

1870: The Society of Biblical Archaeology was founded in London.

1905: An Act for the Separation of Church and State became law in France, repealing Napoleon's Concordat of 1801.

1917: During the First World War (1914-1918), British forces under the command of General Edmund Allenby captured Jerusalem from the Ottoman Empire (listen to our Sermons The Ottoman Empire and The Balfour Declaration; see also Israel In History and Prophecy: Balfour Declaration). It occurred on Hanukkah, which commemorates the recovery of The Temple after the original "abomination of desolation" that was committed by the Seleucids (see A History Of Jerusalem: Greeks, Ptolemies, Seleucids) while under the rule of the heathen Antiochus Epiphanes (see A History Of Jerusalem: Abomination Of Desolation and The Holy Place In History And Prophecy).

The Liberation of Jerusalem

1931: Spain became a republic.

1940: British forces launched their first major offensive in North Africa during the Second World War (1939-1945).

1941: During the Second World War, China declared war on Japan, Germany and Italy - thereby making China allies with Russia, the U.S., Britain.

1945: The flamboyant U.S. General George Patton was involved in an automobile accident at Kafertal, a suburb of Mannheim, Germany. The collision was relatively minor, however Patton, who was not wearing a seat belt, flew upward and struck his head on the roof of the vehicle; he was paralyzed from the neck down and died 12 days later.

1949: The United Nations General Assembly voted for the entire city of Jerusalem to be transformed into a corpus separtum - an "international" city.

1957: Lester Pearson (who later served as Canada's 14th Prime Minister, 1963-1968) was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. He received the award for his work while Canadian external affairs minister in negotiating a settlement of the 1956 Suez crisis by proposing a UN peace-keeping force as a means of easing the British and French out of Egypt.

Lester Pearson

1961: Captured Nazi Adolf Eichman was found guilty of war crimes by a court in Israel (see also Israel In History and Prophecy: Israel Of Judah).

1961: Tanganyika became independent from Britain and took the new name Tanzania.

1979: The eradication of the smallpox virus was certified, thereby making smallpox the first and only human disease driven to extinction.

1990: Former "Solidarity" labor union leader Lech Walesa won Poland's presidential election.

1994: The closest (to date) recorded approach to earth by a celestial object occurred when an asteroid the size of a small house passed within 100,000 km. of the planet (about 1/4 of the distance to the moon). Known as asteroid 1994XM1, it orbits the sun in the same area as the earth and is believed that it will eventually collide with earth.


Copyright © Wayne Blank