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A History of
The New Testament mentions the name "Jerusalem" 139 times. Jesus visited
Jerusalem and spent his last week there. But that only covers Jerusalem for
about 30 years: what about the rest of Jerusalemís history? Well, here we go
(and this is abbreviated!).
- The earliest mention of Jerusalem is from the Bible. In Genesis 14:18, the
king of Salem (probably Jerusalem) met Abraham; this occurred around 1950 BC.
the 1800s BC, the city of "Rusalimum" is mentioned in Egyptian Execration Texts.
- In the 1300s BC, the city of "Urusalim" is mentioned in letters to Egypt (Amarna
- Around 1000 BC, the Jewish King David attacked a city controlled by
the Jebusites and made it his capital, this was Jerusalem (II Samuel 5:6,7).
son, Solomon, built the Temple in Jerusalem.
- After Solomon, the kingdom split
with Jerusalem going to the southern kingdom.
- The Assyrians defeated the
northern kingdom in 722 BC.
- The Babylonian King, Nebuchadnezzar, captured
Jerusalem and destroyed the Temple in 586 BC.
- In 539 BC, Cyrus, the Persian
King, defeated the Babylonians, and declared that Jews who had been taken
captive by the Babylonians could return to Jerusalem. Many Jews returned and
rebuilt the Temple.
- In 332 BC, Alexander the Great defeated the Persians and
gained control of Jerusalem.
- Upon his death in 323 BC, Egyptians gained
- In 198, Jerusalem switched over to the Syrian Seleucids.
- Around 169
BC, the Seleucid King, Antiochus IV, sought to destroy the Jewish faith and
desecrated the Temple. The Jews revolted and re-established the Jewish kingdom
with Jerusalem as its capital.
- The Jews were able to maintain control of
Jerusalem until 63 BC when the Roman General Pompey captured Jerusalem. The Jews
were allowed to remain in Jerusalem, but under Roman occupation. The Jews
revolted against the Romans in AD 66 and regained Jerusalem and their kingdom.
- The Romans recaptured Jerusalem in AD 70 and destroyed the Temple (which has not
- The Jews revolted again in AD 132 and regained Jerusalem and
their kingdom. The Romans recaptured Jerusalem in AD 135 and forced the Jews to
leave the city. Eventually Jews are allowed to return.
- In 614, the Persians
gained control of Jerusalem.
- In 629 the Byzantines captured Jerusalem.
- In 638
(six years after Muhammadís death), the Muslim leader Omar entered Jerusalem,
and the city became Muslim.
- In 1099, the Christian Crusaders from Europe
- In 1187, the Muslim general Saladin captured Jerusalem.
1192, Richard the Lion-Hearted attempted to capture Jerusalem, but failed.
1275, Marco Polo stopped by on his way to China.
- In 1517, the Ottomans gained
control of Jerusalem.
- In 1917, the British gained control of Jerusalem.
- In 1947,
the United Nations recommended partitioning Israel between the Jews and the
- On May 14, 1948, Israel became a nation.
- On May 14, 1948
(the same day), the surrounding Muslim nations attacked Israel; Israel gained
- In April 1949 Israel and Transjordan agreed to divide
Jerusalem. Jerusalem (or part of Jerusalem) became the official capital of
Israel on Dec 13, 1949.
- On June 5, 1967, Jordan (former Transjordan) shelled the
Jewish part of Jerusalem.
- On June 7, 1967, the Jews captured the Jordan part of
- And the Jews have controlled Jerusalem ever since, except
for the Dome of the Rock.
©2007 Mark Nickens
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