The Hidden City Cont.
(File 4 Of 6)

Online Bible King James Version

The Levitical City

A Witness (Isaiah 19:19-20) The Altar of Ebenezer atop the Stone of Abel

          Locating The Altar Of Ebenezer Locates The Altar Before The Temple:  If you would like a little hands on involvement in searching out the Solomonic Temple, an interesting and unique starting place might be the sign, pillar, and altar described in Isaiah 19:19-20.   It actually is a bound stone, a vital starting place for locating certain objects including the altar before the Solomonic Temple.

          Back in the early 1980's we had calculated the precise location and anticipated that there was an altar or bound stone at that specific location.   We then proceeded as if we were correct with rather intriguing results.   Then on 10 February 1985 we visited the site and, lo and behold, there it was!   It's right on top of the ground.   At that time it was so overgrown with brush, weeds, and grasses that the quality of our photographs require three or four pictures to show what one picture could if the brush and weeds were removed.

          The altar is the Altar of Ebenezer (I Samuel 7:12) located atop the Stone of Abel (I Samuel 6:18).   Both are situated between the settlements of Sidot Mikha and Gefen about 20 miles West of Jerusalem.   That is, go to the large water tank West of Sidot Mikha and continue West of the tank to the low point of the dip in the road (i.e. about 100 yards more or less).   Then after slipping through the pasture fence on the South side of the road proceed up the rocky hill to the high point of the hill (a 15 or 20 minute hike at best).   You'll be standing on the Stone of Abel; and, the Altar of Ebenezer is the large circle of stones (about 40 feet in diameter) filled with earth.   A second circle, a smaller circle, of stones (about 14 feet in diameter) also filled with earth is centered atop the bottom disk.   And a small heap of stones is centered atop the upper tier.   Again, it's on the highest point of the hill.

Map showing location of the Altar of Ebenezer atop the Stone of Abel

          Later, we found that the Altar of Ebenezer (the stone of help) is described by the Hebrew 'ôben as a midwife's stool or potter's wheel, the dual of the Hebrew 'eben plus 'êzer meaning help or aid (John Strong's Hebrew Lexicon # 72, # 68, # 70, and # 5828).   And that's exactly what Ebenezer looks like.

          The Stone of Abel, a mountain of rock, is not very visible as one approaches from the road.   However, a few minutes walk South-Southwest from the Altar brings one to the vast cliff face of Abel that soars above the valley floor far below.   The panorama offers an astounding view of the Shephelah toward Gaza and the Mediterranean.

          Ebenezer upon the Stone of Abel is the first or key piece in a most unique puzzle involving:  (1) the three Shemeshes (Beth, Ir, and En), (2) the Altar before the Solomonic Temple (the Battlement), and (3) Beth Zur (the home of the rock).   As opposed to the Battlement, Ebenezer is the window or witness described in J. Strong's # 8121 regarding "Shemesh."   Now when you examine the ruins of Beth Shemesh there is no way 50,070 men could fit inside that tiny city even if stacked like cordwood.   So, could 50,070 be a unique baseline in cubits (I Samuel 6:19)?

          Locating The Altar Before The Temple Locates The Whole City:  In order to search out the Solomonic Temple, people ought to know what they are looking for.   However, although matters are quite obvious, esteemed archaeologists have admitted that they have all the pieces but can't put them together.   For example, the late Yigael Yadin who oversaw the translation and publication of The Temple Scroll (in three volumes each in Hebrew then English) made a statement to that effect in The Temple Scroll commentary volume published c. 1982.   And the variety of Temple designs and models constructed by "the experts" has little resemblance of reality when examined versus the myriad references.   Yet, matters are truly simple.

          That is, examine the overall layout.   The Solomonic Temple's Levitical City is Four Square and is composed of: (1) Four rows of three housing units per row (like the High Priest's breast plate), (2) Has three triple gates per side, (3) The great altar is centered therein, (4) The great domed four square amphitheatre about the altar provides seating and restaurants for the flocks, and (5) That amphitheatre also contains the Temple in one quadrant.

          Eventually, that amphitheatre was burned and probably completely demolished.   However, the base of the Altar is precisely positioned in the midst of the court before the Temple and should be easily found perhaps without the brazen upper portion which may have gone to Babylon.   The Temple itself was collapsed in a specific manner by Zedekiah and those with him to preserve the inner portion and prevent the Babylonians from entering therein.   Remember, the Solomonic Temple faced West so the face of the porch will be found a specific distance East of the Altar.

          Yes, the Old Testament and the Talmud say the Levitical City is 2,000 cubits on a side; whereas, The Temple Scroll says it is 1,600 cubits on a side.   The great amphitheatre has three gates per side and Hecataeus described the great walled enclosure as having double gates.   Actually, there are hundreds of references that all fit together quite nicely.   It's when "the experts" sweep this reference and that reference "under the rug" because they don't understand ... that's when they get even more confused.

          Again, we have suggested starting at the Altar of Ebenezer (Isaiah 19:19-20) for a reason.   That is, Scripture uses Ebenezer as a key reference point; "The Cliff House" upon Beth Zur should be the second visible reference point.   Using those two points, once confirmed, one can readily affirm the location of the center point of the Altar before the Solomonic Temple.

          Today GPS (Global Positioning System) can accurately pin point items, measure distances and coordinates, etc.   However, we understand that GPS units require calibration using a known geographic survey marker as underwater salvage people, for example, claim the military routinely insert "fudge factors" that displace or offset the true coordinates.

          Then once the Altar is uncovered, measures of the Altar reveal the measure of the precise cubit used.   With that information the exact location of all features of the Temple, the Levitical City, roads, gates, etc. can be identified.   It's that simple.

          We've already used Ebenezer upon Abel to locate things with amazing accuracy.   And we found Ebenezer by using a particular point in Independence Garden Park as described in our websites that you have visited.   We now suggest that you triangulate using a GPS unit to locate that same particular point atop the Altar before the Solomonic Temple while taking photographs and video as you progress.   You, of course, will be doing the reverse of what we've already done only using two points and three sides of a triangle; whereas, we actually used a point, azimuth, and distance to locate Ebenezer atop Abel.

          Note:  Accuracy was not a factor when we searched out Ebenezer upon Abel.   That is, it was precisely where we anticipated it to be; but, if we were off a few hundred feet, Ebenezer is 40 feet in diameter and rests right atop the ground on the high point of the landscape.   Finding it was a "piece of cake!"   We walked directly to it on the very first try.   And if we had been off by a few hundred feet or more we could have found it anyway.

          Conversely, the Altar before the Solomonic Temple is well buried and hidden from view so here accuracy is an important factor.   Scripture provides: (1) a baseline, (2) an anchor at Ebenezer, and (3) the three "Shemeshes" indicate that a second point should be found at Beth Zur (very probably "The Cliff House" as it identifies a specific point.   See the attached diagram titled:  "Counsel At Abel":  II Samuel 20:18).   If measures between Ebenezer and Beth Zur agree then the probability is very great that point #2 (on diagram) is directly atop the Altar before the Solomonic Temple.

          Excavating the Levitical City and the Solomonic Temple ruins from the Surface should be a major undertaking.   However, reentry of the preserved inner Temple via the sewer outflow should be relatively easy (Details have been explained in "Reentering Temple History A and B").   A third approach would be to reenter via the tunnel from fresh water springs to the Northwest of the Solomonic Temple site.   However, the nearest access hole complete with steps to the watercourse is full of rocks apparently thanks to King Hezekiah.   Smile!

          The Altar Placement In The Center Of The Court Before The Temple:  The foundation of the base of the Altar is 32 cubits by 32 cubits according to Middoth (measurements) 3:1 (the Kodashem of the Talmud).   From the edge of this base of the Altar go 12 cubits Eastward to the lowest step (the first step) to enter the Solomonic Temple.   The depth of the steps to the Temple is 22 cubits measuring from the bottom step to the face of the Temple Porch.   Thus, measuring from the center of the Altar 16 + 12 + 22 = 50 cubits.   And 50 cubits is the measure to the center of the court before the Temple measuring from the face of the Temple Porch (Middoth 3:1,6; 5:1).

          Now measuring from the bottom of the steps of the Temple to the far (West) edge of the Altar ramp is 62 cubits (Middoth 5:2).

          Also, measuring from the (East) edge of the Altar nearest the Temple to the West side of the Altar ramp is 50 cubits.   This measure includes both the Altar (32 cubits) and the width of the ramp (18 cubits).   This measurement point matches the 62 cubits of Middoth 5:2 as 62 minus 12 equals 50 cubits (Josephus, War of the Jews, Book 5, Chapter 5, Section 6).   Again, the 12 cubits is the distance from the base of the Altar to the first (bottom) step of the Temple's main entrance.

          Note:  The Middoth describes the Base of the Altar in detail, whereas, II Chronicles 4:1; Ezekiel 43:12-13; etc. pick up at the 20 cubit by 20 cubit portion described as the place for the Altar fire which is 10 cubits above the pavement of the court before the Temple.

          Excavating The City:  When the Altar is excavated and the cubit measures confirmed, the precise measures and placement of all elements of the Levitical City can be determined.   Sample trenches can confirm the placement of roads, gates, walls, housing units, the exterior of the amphitheatre, and the Temple heap within the ancient amphitheatre.   Yes, 5Q15 says, "And all (the streets of the city) are paved with white stone ... marble and jasper." (See item 6 of 5Q15 quoted from File 5 of 6 herewith).

A Colossal Brass Dome Overlaid With Gold
Enclosed The Temple, The Inner And Outer Temple Courts,
And A Huge Tri-Level Amphitheatre

The Ancient Levitical City Of Jerusalem Built By Solomon On Melchizedek's Holy Mount WEST Of The Hinnom Valley (Joshua 15:8)!!!

The Ancient Levitical City Of Jerusalem
Built By Solomon On Melchizedek's Holy Mount
West Of The Hinnom (Joshua 15:8; Jeremiah 19:2 KJV).


          Remember, the Persian traditions called Noah's ark "Varuna" meaning house of clay or perhaps buried in or on clay or earth.  It also spoke of wide avenues between the housing units and called the ark a buried fortress or tomb.   Yes, the Persian descriptions likened Noah's ark to the Levitical City about the Temple within a great amphitheatre centered therein.   So, let's examine some measures.

          Scripture gives us partial measures for Noah's ark as being 300 by 50 cubits by 30 cubits high (Genesis 6:15).   O.K., the 300 by 50 fit nicely as measures of the Temple Amphitheatre that facilitated seating for the flock, restaurants (cooking facilities in the corners), and even a Temple in one quadrant with its Holy of Holies and Throne Room therein.

          Remember, this was the city of Noah that was 120 years in building and celebrated the presence of the original Holy Ark and The Glory Of GOD both before and during The Flood (Habakkuk 3:3).

Temple Amphitheatre: (A Cross Section Of Measures)

Temple Amphitheatre Cross Section

a. = Gates:  50 cubits each: Genesis 6:15; Ezekiel 40:15,20-21, etc.   Also 4 X 50 = 200 cubits:  2 stades (Berossus).

b. = Measure between gates: (100 cubits):  Ezekiel 40:23.

c. = Court before the Temple (100 cubits):  court centered in amphitheatre:  Ezekiel 40:47; 41:14.

b. + c. + b. = 300 cubits total (open areas): Genesis 6:15.

length = 500 cubits = 5 stades (Berossus):  Ezekiel 42:16-20; 45:2; Middoth 2:1 (Talmud).

width = 200 cubits = 2 stades (Berossus).

The Stone Walled Enclosure

          Hecataeus the Abderite writing (about 307 BC) shortly after the death of Alexander the Great, as quoted by Josephus (Cont. Ap. 1:22), said that:

          "... in Jerusalem, towards the middle of the city, is a stone-walled enclosure about 500 feet (cubits) in length and 100 cubits in width, with double gates" in which he describes the Temple as being situated."

          Therein, Hecataeus actually describes the exterior measure of the amphitheatre enclosure about the Temple measuring 500 cubits foursquare and the interior measure of the court of the Altar which measures 100 cubits foursquare.

          The double gates describe the exterior gates of the amphitheatre leading to/from the City and the interior gates within the amphitheatre opening onto the court of the Altar.

          The Temple, of course, occupies one quadrant within the great amphitheatre, the "stone-walled enclosure."

          Note:  In these latter days, the LORD'S Day wherein we now dwell, John was told not to be concerned about the amphitheatre measures, i.e. measuring "the court without the Temple," as the End Times amphitheatre will be much larger and of modern design and materials (Revelation 11:1-2).

Levitical City:

          The Gilgamesh Epic reveals that Noah's ark is foursquare exactly like the Levitical City with the great amphitheatre centered therein.

Measures Of Amphitheatre, City, And Suburbs

City Wall = 2000 cubits:  Numbers 35:5; Rosh Ha-Shanah 2:5; Erubin 4:8; 5:1 (Talmud).

Suburb Extension = 1000 cubits:  Numbers 35:4.

(Note:  The Temple Scroll cites 1600 cubits for City; i.e. four 400 cubit housing areas; but, excludes end walls and gates.)

City Wall:

The Levitical City Wall Measurements

g. = 128 cubit city gate:  5Q15 (Qumran).

h. = 400 cubit housing areas:  II Kings 14:13; 5Q15 (Qumran).

w. = 8 cubit walls:  (simple subtraction).

4 X h. = 1600 cubits:  (Temple Scroll:  col. 40:8).

Each City gate:

          Each of the gates in the City Wall were triple gates.   And three triple gates per side equaled twelve triple gates for all four sides which times three equaled 36 gates total in the City Wall.

          The purpose of the triple gates facilitated RIGHT HAND TRAFFIC for vehicles, horses, carts, etc.:  Ezekiel 46:9 (East then West side); Middoth 2:2 (West side); 4:2 (East side).   The center of the triple gates facilitated pedestrian traffic.   Thus, there were broad avenues from each gate around the City and to the Temple Amphitheatre centered therein.

          This is just like the Persian legend called "Varuna," the house of clay, with its wide avenues now called a buried fortress and tomb.

The City Gates Facilitated Right Hand Traffic


          The preBabylonian Levitical City measures 2000 cubits on a side.   Therefore, if an 18 inch cubit were applied, the size of the city would be 3000 feet on a side.   The foundation measures also apply with the city being built on one tier, the inner amphitheatre on two tiers, and the inner court on three tiers.   Each tier being six cubits deep (perhaps 9 feet).   And the main (first) floor of the Temple was raised still another tier that the Priests on the Altar could see directly into the Holy of Holies when the doors were open.   (For foundations:  Revelation 21:19).

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         George & Dana Brown
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