The Founding of Jerusalem

Part 3: Destruction of Sodom, and Founding of Jerusalem

Part 1: The Canaanites, War of Kings, and Lot’s Rescue by Abraham

Part 2: Melchizedek, King of Salem


The destruction of Sodom

Enough time had passed since the invasion of the four kings. The cities of Pentapolis had been quickly rebuilt. Within a few years, there was nothing left that would remind of the recent calamity. Music was played in the squares of Sodom; trade was brisk in Gomorrah; flamethrowers performed miracles in the marketplace of Admah; skilled dancers danced in Zeboiim; wine flowed like a river and drunken daredevils started fistfights in Zoar. And throughout the five cities, from the outlying shacks of the poor to the magnificent royal chambers decked out in idol statues, sophisticated, perverse debauchery held sway... The cruel lesson the Lord had given the Canaanites by sending down upon them the destructive forces from the north had clearly not served them well...

That dreadful morning when the Lord destroyed Sodom was no different from any other morning. The city was still dreaming its last dream, and only four people—Lot, his wife, and their two daughters—led by angels out of the doomed city by the hand, were hastening on their way to Zoar...

And in that moment, they felt how the ground shook violently underneath their feet...

“There used to be,” writes the Greek researcher N. Vassiliadis, “an oil field under Sodom with an inexhaustible supply of natural gas. Apparently, because of the earthquake, gas and oil burst out and ignited in the air, causing a monstrous explosion that brought down burning sulfur and tar from above on the cities in the valley of Siddim...”1

But alas, the rain of sulfur was just the beginning…

A disastrous earthquake literally broke the valley apart, separating its western and eastern sides by a fissure. Thus, according to some scholars, the Syrian-African Fault, six and a half thousand kilometers long, the longest and deepest fissure on the face of the earth, was formed. A violent and irresistible force pushed the eastern, Asian part northward, forming a gigantic depression about four kilometers wide—what we now call as the Jordan Valley, with its southern extension, the Arava, that stretches all the way to the Red Sea or practically down to the Indian Ocean.

The cities of the Siddim Valley literally fell down into this abyssal cavity—and were immediately covered by the water rushing in from the Indian Ocean in the worst tsunami in the history of mankind.

All this horror was accompanied by such heat that the ocean waters were instantly evaporated, leaving only ocean salt behind... The water from the Indian Ocean kept coming and coming into the valley—evaporating almost instantly and leaving behind the layer upon layer of salt... The bottom of the Dead Sea is essentially that deep layer of salt that makes it ten times saltier than any other body of water on Earth.

Archpriest Konstantin Bufeev irrefutably proves that biblical revelation is completely incompatible with the theory of evolution

Evolutionary biologists (or those who upheld the theory of uniformism) believe that the face of the Earth has been practically unchanged for thousands of years and they make claims that the Dead Sea was formed about two million years ago. The vast majority of modern geologists belong to such scientists, although there are exceptions.2 If you trust evolutionary theory, the above story will sound quite fantastic. We’ll abstain from going into details about the scientific battles between evolutionists and creationists, but simply refer to the detailed work “The Orthodox doctrine about creation and the theory of evolution”3 by Archpriest Konstantin Bufeev, the PhD Candidate in Geological Mineralogy. Father Konstantin, referring to the text of the Scripture and teachings of the Church Fathers, has in our opinion irrefutably proven that the biblical revelation is completely incompatible with the theory of evolution!

Creationists (also called catastrophists) fully trust the testimony of the Bible that the age of the Earth doesn’t exceed eight thousand years. The face of our planet has been altered beyond recognition by great catastrophes, such as the flood, and then some... According to many creationists,4 the Dead Sea and the entire Syrian-African Fault were formed a mere four thousand years ago, at the time of Abraham, on one terrible morning—the morning of the destruction of the Canaanite Pentapolis.

But how can all this be connected with the migration of Melchizedek and his subjects from old Salem to present-day Jerusalem? To answer this question it is enough to take a geological map of Israel and find the city of Beth Shean there. Not far from this city is Tel Shalem, that is, the hill of Salem. It is located practically on the very edge of the Jordan Valley, or the edge of the fault that developed on the day the cities of the Siddim Valley were destroyed... We can assume that on that terrible morning, the city of Melchizedek was also hit by the earthquake... It took some time before the righteous king made up his mind and completely abandoned the city. Perhaps they tried to rebuild the city and establish life anew there, but the terrible path of death and destruction that ran so close by triggered agonizing memories and haunted their minds...

But only several decades later, when Abraham had already agreed to sacrifice his son Isaac in the land of Moriah, did Melchizedek order his subjects to relocate.



I recommend that all readers include a visit of the “City of David” archaeological park in their Jerusalem pilgrimage program. This park was opened to visitors after the sensational discovery by Israeli archaeologist Eilat Mazar in 2005—she unearthed the foundations of King David’s majestic palace, thereby shaming the odious skeptics who claimed that no David had ever existed, or even if he did exist, he must have been some petty thief.

Moreover, the palace of David is not the greatest antiquity of this amazing place, because it is “merely” three thousand years old. But if you go down from the palace ruins, you’ll find yourself in a mind-blowing secret tunnel that went from the city down to the Gihon Spring—a major natural water source in that area. When the Canaanites settled here four thousand years ago, they built a town on a higher ground above Gihon, and tunneled an underground passage to the spring itself. This secret tunnel takes you to the Canaanite Pond, according to archaeologists cut through the rock around the same time or about four thousand years ago. Above the pond and the spring itself the Canaanites built two towers and defensive walls using cyclopean stones, and those ruins can also be seen today. There would be no construction in Jerusalem of such scale, with stones weighing several tons, until the time of King Herod. It also means that there would be no one capable of competing with the Canaanites in building craft for another two thousand years! They also dug in the rock another waterworks tunnel from the spring source and used water from Gihon to irrigate the Kidron Valley.

That’s how the story of Jerusalem begen...

About five hundred years after Melchizedek, the land of Canaan would be conquered by the Jews, Abraham’s descendants, who were headed by the Prophet Joshua, the son of Nun and Moses’ successor. At that time, according to the Bible, a king named Adonizedek ruled in Jerusalem. Melchizedek in Hebrew means “king of justice”, and Adonizedek means "lord of justice”. The similarity of the names probably indicates that both belonged to the same royal dynasty—that is, Adonizedek was a descendant of Melchizedek. However, sadly, there is no question of piety of the descendant of the great Hamite... Judging from what we can learn about Adonizedek from the Bible, he was such a typical Canaanite pagan princeling. Were there still any monotheists left in Jerusalem? Have any of its inhabitants remembered the Almighty God, Whose faithful servant was the city founder Melchizedek? This we do not know. But the Lord, Who gave this land to the children of Israel and ordered their leader Joshua to mercilessly exterminate the local inhabitants, for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full (Gen. 15:16), did not allow the Jews to seize and destroy Jerusalem, as He did so many cities in the land of Canaan. Presumably, the Jews were able to only just temporarily capture and burn the outskirts of the city (Jud. 1:8). That said, Joshua ordered that Adonizedek be hanged, along with several other local princelings who fought against the Jews and their allies.

So, for several more centuries, life went on as follows: the Jews settled in the land of Canaan they had conquered and built their cities there, but Jerusalem proper still remained in the hands of Canaanites.

David made the conquered city the capital of his kingdom and ruled there for thirty-three years—equal in number to the years of the earthly life of Christ

It was not until a few hundred years later, when the Jews conquered the Holy Land, that Joab, King David’s cousin and commander, managed to get inside the city walls with his “special ops force”, using the ancient secret tunnel, and take possession of Jerusalem. The holy prophet and king David made the captured city the capital of his kingdom, and ruled in his new capital for thirty-three years, the period equal to the number of years of the earthly life of Christ, his Divine Descendant. David built himself a magnificent palace just above the sacred spring of Gihon. That was the palace whose ruins the archaeologist Eilat Mazar had excavated in 2005.

As for the tomb of the righteous Melchizedek, the founder of the city, it was shown during the times of the Crusades (or maybe even earlier) in the cave under Golgotha, where the head of the first man had once been buried. At the same place, in the Chapel of Adam and next to the tomb of the priest-king, there were the tombs of the crusader kings of Jerusalem, the “rightful (according to the crusaders themselves!) heirs to the throne of Melchizedek”. Was Melchizedek truly buried directly underneath the site of the crucifixion? We do not know for sure, but the very assumption seems quite plausible and his burial place greatly symbolic. Perhaps the first king of Jerusalem wanted to be buried on the same mountain (or in its vicinity) where he sacrificed the bulls, goats and sheep to God the Almighty, and where two thousand years later Jesus, the Son of God, the Messiah from the house of David, Lord of lords, and King of kings (Rev. 17:14), a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek (Psalms 110:4), would offer the sacrifice of Himself for the sins of the whole of mankind.

Evgeny Abdullayev
Translation by Liubov Ambrose


1 Vassiliadis N. The Bible and archaeology.

2 For example, Russian scientist Alexander Lalomov, Doctor of Geological and Mineralogy Sciences. Here is what he writes: “A chance acquaintance with the Moscow Society for Creationist Research brought about a lot of changes. An attempt to apply the model of beach-submarine placer formation I have developed to determine the age of deposits yielded an extremely surprising result: instead of the commonly accepted forty-fifty million years, I arrived at the lower age of post-Mesozoic (or post-Flood, according to the creationist time scale) five thousand year-old deposits, that surprisingly corresponded to the chronology of the Bible. Ever since, I re-conceptualized the many well-known facts and discovered that a great number of them are much better explained from the position of creationism and the theory of a young Earth, rather than in the context of evolutionary science..." (Lalomov A. Influence of the worldview in geological research //

3 Bufeev Konstantin, Archpriest. Orthodox teaching on Creation and the theory of evolution //

4 Please see, for example: Sisoev Daniel, Priest. Chronicle of the Beginning.

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