After being crowned King of Judah and then eventually of Israel (the northern tribes) in Hebron, David moved to conquer Jerusalem. Evidently it was his “general” Joab who with his men who surprised the Jebusites inside of the city by gaining access via the sinnor—usually translated “water system” (2 Samuel 5:1-12 and 1 Chronicles 11:4–9). Previously I described this system and included pictures of the recently (ca. January of 2014) opened to the public system that dated back to the 18th century B.C.
By moving his capital from Hebron (in Judah) to Jerusalem David accomplished a number of things.
- Because he captured it, Jerusalem became his personal possession (not that of any particular tribe).
- Because Jerusalem was located between the northern and southern tribes it was in a sense a “neutral” city. If the capital had remained in Hebron the northern tribes might of accused him of favoring the Judeans (his own tribe) and if he moved the capital to Shechem his own tribe of Judah would have been offended.
- By capturing Jebus, a pagan city and population that was located in the heartland of Israel was eliminated.
- By bringing the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem (2 Samuel 6, 1 Chronicles 13) he began the process that led to its becoming the religious capital of Israel.
- And finally, its position in the Hill Country, not on the Coastal Plain to the west, meant that his capital was not on the normal military route through the Land of Canaan.
The topography of the “Old Ancient Core” of Jerusalem (ca. 15 acres in size) is that of a “bump in the bottom of a bowl.”
In light of the above, note:
As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people both now and forevermore.”
Psalm 125:2 (NIV)
I will lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from? [not the princes of Judah or Israel] My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.
Psalm 121:1–2 (NIV)
See also Psalms 2, 46, 48, 87, 122, 132 among many others!
Next Monday—Solomon builds the Temple.