King David and Israel - Jewish History
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King David and Israel

ruined stone walls and people with colored buckets
The temple of Goliath's town, Gath

April 2016 - After they got free from the Philistines, the Jews were independent again for a while, and this is the time of the story of Ruth. At this time the Jews did not have a king, but were ruled by judges. Now (according to the Bible), Ruth's son was named Obed, and his son was named Jesse, and Jesse's son was named David.

When David was a child, maybe around 1000 BC, the Philistines attacked the Jews again. Samuel fought the Philistines, and became a judge and a leader of the Jews. Then the Jews wanted a king, and Samuel made a young man named Saul the first king of the Jews. When David was a young man, about 900 BC, he fought the Philistines too - this is the story of David and Goliath in the Bible.


A video of the story of David and Goliath

Later David became the king of the Jews, and after him Solomon became the king of the Jews. (In November 2005, archaeologists found a piece of pottery in the town of Gath, where the Bible says Goliath came from, which had the name Goliath scratched on it. It probably doesn't mean the same Goliath, but it does show that Goliath really was a name people used in Gath around that time).

Solomon (according to the Bible) built the first stone temple in Jerusalem to hold the Ark of the Covenant, which had inside it the Ten Commandments which God had given to Moses.

The Bible says that Solomon married the Pharaoh's daughter from Egypt, and he also received a visit from the wealthy Queen of Sheba. Sheba was a kingdom in the Arabian Peninsula, probably modern Yemen.

Learn by doing: put on a play or make a video of the David and Goliath story
What came next: Judah

Bibliography and further reading about King David and King Solomon:

More on the Jews (Judah)
More about the Jews (index)
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Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram or Twitter.
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