Of all the ancient religious sites in modern Israel, Kiriath-Jearim is one of the last to be excavated. Mentioned in the Hebrew Bible as the place where one of the Israelites’ most sacred artifacts was kept, archaeologists have had the opportunity to study the location. And what they have found may reframe the Biblical narrative.
The Hebrew Bible is the common name of a collection of religious texts that are essential to Jewish, Christian and Islamic beliefs. In Judaism, the Hebrew Bible is known the Tanakh, and many Christians refer to it as the Old Testament. Indeed, the Hebrew Bible is our main source of information about what happened in Ancient Israel in Biblical times.
However, the Hebrew Bible is not a perfect source for understanding the religion of Ancient Israel. Indeed, it was written hundreds of years after the events it claims to depict, and archaeologists and historians have long sought further evidence to prove or disprove its accounts.