Did Archaeologists Discover The Biblical City Of Sodom?


THE fiery fate of the doomed cities of Sodom and Gomorrah has captured the imaginations of artists, theologians and archaeologists for years. The book of Genesis describes how God “rained down burning sulfur” to punish those cities for their wickedness, destroying all living things inside of them.

 But is there any proof that these cities really existed and that they were destroyed by a sudden calamity?
The answer, for Dr. Steven Collins, a professor of Biblical studies and apologetics at Trinity Southwest University, is yes. He claims he may have located Sodom.

Since 2005, Collins and his team have been studying an archaeological site in the southern Jordan Valley known as Tall el-Hammam. After wrapping up the tenth season of excavations, he believes they’ve found a “goldmine of ancient monumental structures and artifacts” that suggests the site was a powerful city-state during the Early and Middle Bronze Ages (between 3,500 and 1540 B.C.)

 Over the years, his research team has found evidence of a massive defensive wall, a palatial structure and a gateway complex that dates back to the Middle Bronze Age. During the 2015 season, the archaeologists found a few more towers and gates.
For Collins, all of this points to the fact that Tall el-Hammam was likely one of the largest cities east of the “Kikkar,” a Hebrew word that describes the plains near the Jordan River. He also claims that Tall el-Hamman is strategically located near ancient water resources and trade routes.

The professor says there’s a good chance that the Biblical text is referring to Tall el-Hammam when it describes Sodom.

“Tall el-Hammam seemed to match every Sodom criterion demanded by the [Bible],” he told Popular Archaeology. “When we explored the area, the choice of Tall el-Hammam as the site of Sodom was virtually a no-brainer since it was at least five to ten times larger than all the other Bronze Age sites in the entire region, even beyond the Kikkar of the Jordan.”

His team also unearthed evidence that suggests the booming city came to a sudden end near the end of the Middle Bronze Age, which is close to the time that Collins believes the Biblical leaders Abraham and Lot walked the earth. It’s unclear what caused the city’s change in fortune, but one possibility is that it was destroyed by fire. The site reportedly remained a wasteland for about 700 years after this event.

 Collins isn’t alone in his quest to find Sodom. Other scholars have suggested that Sodom and Gomorrah rose to prominence in the early Bronze Age and that they were located in different regions near the Dead Sea. 

40 thoughts on “Did Archaeologists Discover The Biblical City Of Sodom?

  1. All archaeology eventually supports what is written in the Bible. None contradicts it. The Bible is even used as to where to start.


  2. “It all came from analyzing the Biblical text regarding the location of Sodom,” says Collins. “The quintessential passage holding the geographical key to Sodom’s location is Genesis 13:1-12.” As a Bible scholar and archaeologist, he, like many in his field, recognized the inescapable parallels between many of the archaeological sites and remains that dot the Levant with the place-names of cities and towns well known in the Bible—places like Jericho, Jerusalem, Capernaum, Megiddo and Hazor, to name a few.
    After careful research, he then went looking.
    “Tall el-Hammam seemed to match every Sodom criterion demanded by the text,” he says. “Theorizing, on the basis of the Sodom texts, that Sodom was the largest of the Kikkar [the Jordan ‘Disk’, or ‘well-watered plain’ in the Biblical text] cities east of the Jordan, I concluded that if one wanted to find Sodom, then one should look for the largest city on the eastern Kikkar that existed during the Middle Bronze Age, the time of Abraham and Lot. When we explored the area, the choice of Tall el-Hammam as the site of Sodom was virtually a no-brainer since it was at least five to ten times larger than all the other Bronze Age sites in the entire region, even beyond the Kikkar of the Jordan.”


      • From this:

        We turned the place completely upside down and rained down on them stones of hard-baked clay. There are certainly Signs in that for the discerning. They were beside a road which still exists. There is certainly a Sign in that for the believers. (Qur’an, 15:74-77)

        Usually when the Quran states there are signs in that, it will be found. It also states that Sodom is next to a road that still exists. So another question is it under or near a main road or path ?


    • Genesis * [19:25] Overthrew: this term, lit., “turned upside down,” is used consistently to describe the destruction of the cities of the Plain. The imagery of earthquake and subsequent fire fits the geology of this region.


    • Upside down might just be a literary metaphor there. Just because Muhammad was wrong about the big things in life doesn’t mean he didn’t get some things right. He seems to have had some very crude exposure to Syriac heretics and Aramaic bibles so might have learnt a little bit of history.
      FYI, A true prophet Ezekiel who prophesied today’s current Gog Magog Syrian/ Golan war puts a wider context on Sodom
      New American Standard Bible
      “Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had arrogance, abundant food and careless ease, but she did not help the poor and needy.

      King James Bible
      Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.

      While Gay rape was obviously a big deal there was something worse that led to it. The rape was just the low fruit on a rotten tree.
      You slandered me again the other day with this rather tired bigot claim. While orthodox jews may remain antipathetic through to vehemently opposed to Christians they do, ironically, retain the actual Tanakh/ having added to it the very rabbinical writ that abrogates it. The rabbi’s might subvert their basis of being but they don’t say “it didn’t happen”. The difference it dramatic. What it means and did it happen are two extremely different questions. Profoundly different.

      “What did He mean?” differs extraordinarily from “He didn’t say that”. Hence the gravity of a sodomite’s condition.


  3. But what about all those who lived and died in areas all over the planet all through time back 50,000 years and more.
    The great con by today’s religions is to forget those outside their inward looking little self serving world


    • Though we may die, Jesus says, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.” (John 11:25). We will receive immortality when Jesus comes again (see 1 Corinthians 15:51-54). The Bible says that all those who have died—both righteous and wicked—will be raised to life in one of two resurrections. The righteous will be raised to life at Jesus’ second coming. “ For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.” (1 Thessalonians 4:16, NKJV). According to this verse, the righteous do not to go heaven when they die. They remain asleep in the grave until Jesus returns and raises them to immortal life (see 1 Corinthians 15:50-57).

      The wicked are raised to life in a separate resurrection—the resurrection of condemnation. Jesus said, “Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation.” (John 5:28, 29, NKJV).

      The prophets never mention in the Bible that the righteous immediately go to heaven or the wicked go to hell when they die. Neither did Jesus and His apostles teach it. When Jesus was about to leave His disciples, He did not tell them they would soon come to Him. “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:1-3, NKJV).


    • What about all those who died in all areas? Is not this article about remembering them? Or does rememvering require evidence too? Mind you, archeology as a science does a good job of that. But maybe you would like to blame them for not doing enough for all areas.


    • Do you have evidence for this con? Who did it? When? To who and why? Must be lots of evidence as you stated all areas? You must have a warehouse of evidence for that. But as you stated,”homo sapiens talk crap”. I will place your comments on top of the pile then.


    • Crushing Bones,

      Google skull images of the following:
      – Sahelanthropus Tchedensis
      – Ardipithecus Ramidus
      – Homo Rhodesiensis

      Then compare these skull images with images of the living person Jaxon Buell.

      How do you know that your scientists have not tampered with the evidence to artificially create a new type of humanoid species?


      • That would be great if they could.
        Seeing that there has been zero improvement for at least fifty thousand years.
        Have you watched “”JUDGE JUDY”” ??
        If Homo sapiens have improved and those on her program are the result of fifty thousand years Homo sapiens would require another 500,000 years.


  4. http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2014/december-web-only/biblical-archaeologys-top-ten-discoveries-of-2014.html
    Stone rejected by the builders and Western Wall coins
    Over the years archaeologists have been gradually excavating the total length of the Western Wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. At the foundation layer of the southern end of the wall, they recently uncovered a unique stone. While Herodian architecture typically uses stones that have a margin around the edges and a raised-boss center, this one’s surface was smooth and rounded. Archaeologists Roni Reich and Eli Shukron believe it was left over from the building of the Second Temple, the temple of Jesus’ day. This has led some Bible scholars to suggest it was the literal “stone rejected by the builders,” referenced by Jesus in Matthew 21:42, quoting Psalm 118:22-23.


      • Correct and then proven and supported by the science of archeology time and time again. So it makes sense to start there.


      • You should look up circular argument. Linear arguments are not circular. Plus when has science become false as part of an argument when it proves something? Or maybe you have an issue with the results? Bias anyone!


      • Thanks for the tip “Circular reasoning (Latin: circulus in probando, “circle in proving”; also known as circular logic) is a logical fallacy in which the reasoner begins with what they are trying to end with”


      • Correct about circular logic meaning but incorrect about my so called circular reasoning. If my reasoning is circular then all of science must be too. The hypothesis by archeologists, as scientists, knowing the history of the Bible, took the logical steps. The digs proved them to be correct. Science at its best.
        Set up hypothesis and then see where it takes you. Linear!!

        The logical fallacy you came up with was to assume the Bible is wrong (thus assuming) which the reasoner (you) begins with what they are trying to end with. Trying to prove the Bible wrong. You actually proved your own circular logic.


      • The hypothesis isn’t the starting point in the scientific method. Whereas your model starts and ends with the bible.

        I really don’t know how to respond to the rest of the nonsense in your last comment.


      • I suppose that is one way not to have to respond just call it all a name and then move on. Easy! I also just said set up the hypothesis, not that it is the start. You have set up another premise to shoot down with. You are good at false premise and circular reasoning. This is projection sir!


      • Your starting point and ending point is the accuracy of the bible. As per the earlier definition (that we appeared to agree on) this is circular.

        I’ve read the rest of your comment a few times and don’t know what your point is or how it should be responded to. sorry.


    • Also, if this report is correct, it was more than a rain of fire and brimstone, such as a volcanic eruption. It was “a great mountain movement, with collapse and dislocation, that took place at the beginning of the pluvial, in the first glacial period. . . . In these titanic events conditions were created for the existence of an inner sea.” “These lava eruptions from fissures are ascribed to the second interglacial period.” “Only the rupture of the ground could create this site, singular in the entire world.”

      The Overthrow of the Cities of the Plain

      The Book of Genesis portrays the age of the patriarchs as a time of great upheavals in nature in which the geology of the Jordan Valley underwent some drastic changes. The focus of these events was in the place now occupied by the Dead Sea. The Dead Sea, according to the Genesis account, was not yet in existence in the days of Abraham. In its place there was a fertile plain, known as the plain of Sittim, with five populous cities: Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, Zeboiim, and Zoar. When Lot arrived in the region he “lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well-watered everywhere . . . even as the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt.” (1)
      And Abraham got up early in the morning to the place where he stood before the Lord; And he looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the plain, and beheld, and, lo, the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace.(2)
      The great rift of the Jordan and the Dead Sea bear witness to a tremendous upheaval.
      ///Professor M. Blanckenhorn, the explorer of the region of the Dead Sea.(4) In his later work he advanced the age of the rift to the pluvial, or the beginning of the first glacial age. The origin of the Dead Sea occurred “in a great mountain movement, with collapse and dislocation, that took place at the beginning of the pluvial, in the first glacial period. . . . In these titanic events conditions were created for the existence of an inner sea.” (5)
      The rift in which the Lake of Galilee, the Jordan, and the Dead Sea lie is the deepest depression on any continent. The surface of the Dead Sea is close to 400 meters below the level of the Mediterranean, and its deepest bottom is some 320 meters lower still. The shore falls steeply from the Judean mountains on the west; on the eastern side of the rift rise the Moabite mountains. The walls of the chasm show sharp broken strata that remained horizontal, which proves that the breaking down was instantaneous.(6) The force which caused this slide movement must have been stupendous. The ground of the rift around the Dead Sea is covered with coagulated lava masses, taking the form of an immense herd of giant elephants with rough skin. These lava eruptions from fissures are ascribed to the second interglacial period.(7) To the south end of the Dead Sea towers a big cliff of salt called Jebel Usdum (Mount of Sodom). “It is absolutely impossible that the salt sediment of a sea should precipitate in such a form.” (8) “Only the rupture of the ground could create this site, singular in the entire world.” (9)

      The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah took place in historical times, according to my scheme in a catastrophe which caused also the end of the Old Kingdom in Egypt. The geologists refer the upheaval which tore Syria in two to the end of the Tertiary period—long before human history began.

      Now the question is legitimate: how old is the Dead Sea?



      • long before human history began.

        HUMAN history began on day 6 of creation, and there hadn’t been rain, volcanoes or earthquakes prior to that. You are correct about dramatic climate events. The Sahara was a Savannah. But all the cataclysms are very recent. Look at the1980s Mount StHelens eruption for a perfect example of pyrotechnic and hydrodynamic lamination events/ sorting of particles in dynamic events. Hundreds of so called yrs of sedimentary deposits can happen in few days.

        God said. He really did satan.


    • There are other explanations of such a violent land slippage.Whether the Dead Sea was present then or not, any nearby water source could have resulted in ground liquefying and making such slippage probable. Yes, the town could have literally been thrown over, but the visible remains seem upright.

      Some say an asteroid impact could have caused it all. There was an eye witness record of a meteor approach some thousand years earlier, which could have left a trail of destruction below it far from the impact site. It could have exploded in the air, leaving no crater. http://phys.org/news/2008-03-cuneiform-clay-tablet.html The date of this one is wrong for Sodom, but perhaps another happened along? (Or was sent?)


  5. Israeli police go to this archaeological site, surround it and shout out:

    “Put your weapons down and your pants up and come out”.


  6. Just a moment !
    Are any locations any objects or specific time constructed by Homo sapiens important to a entity that you believe exists.
    Are not all places or times or objects the constructs of religions..
    Why all the fuss ??


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