Nathan-Melech, Servant to King Josiah

2 Kings 23:11 And he removed the horses that the kings of Judah had dedicated to the sun, at the entrance to the house of the LORD, by the chamber of Nathan-melech the chamberlain, which was in the precincts. And he burned the chariots of the sun with fire.

Nathan-melech means: given of a king, a leader in Israel.

Nathan-melech was a “saris” in the original Hebrew. A saris can be translated as a eunich, valet or officer. (Strong’s Concordance)

Nathan-melech knew King Josiah of Israel. This is the only mention in the Biblical text of Nathan-melech.

City of David, Israel: Excavations continue south of the Temple Mount in the greater Jerusalem area. The specific location is the Givati Parking Lot (see red marker in map below).

Photo: Eliyahu Yanai, City of David

The discovery of a clay seal impression is the issue. The find is estimated to be 2,600 years old. The clay seal is written in paleo Hebrew. The seal says, “to Nathan-Melech, Servant of the King” (LeNathan-Melech Eved HaMelech).

“This burnt clay impression is the first archaeological evidence of the biblical name Nathan-Melech.” -Amanda Borschel-Dan, Times of Israel

Scholars and experts are looking at this find in its geographical context. The object was found in its place, a large, two-story First Temple structure. The remains of the administrative building are consistent with the burning of Jerusalem in 586 BC at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonians. Experts were surprised the location of the building was further south of the modern day Temple Mount.

Dr. Yiftah Shalev, Israel Antiquities Authority made the following observation.

“What is importance is not just that they were found in Jerusalem, but (that they were found) inside their true archaeological context. (There is a) connect between the artifact and the actual physical era it was found in. It is not a coincidence that the seal and the seal impression are found here.”

The find is faith confirming for many people.

“This is an extremely exciting find for billions of people worldwide. The personal seal of Natan-Melech, a senior official in the government of Josiah, King of Judah, as described in the second book of Kings. The ongoing archaeological excavations at the City of David continue to prove that ancient Jerusalem is no longer just a matter of faith, but also a matter of fact.” -Doron Spielman, Vice President, City of David Foundation

Skeptics are looking at the archaeological find with an open mind.

“Although it is not possible to determine with complete certainty that the Nathan-Melech who is mentioned in the Bible was in fact the owner of the stamp, it is impossible to ignore some of the details that link them together,” Mendel-Geberovich, Scholar.

For more detail, see the article link below from the Times of Israel.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/two-tiny-first-temple-inscriptions-vastly-enlarge-picture-of-ancient-jerusalem/

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