When ISIS blew up an ancient tomb—located in a ruin mound called Nebi Yunus—in Mosul in 2014, a piece of biblical history was suddenly uncovered. Many Christians believe it to be the tomb of Jonah, the prophet who once called on the city of Nineveh to repent.
Now that local archaeologists can access the ruins, they discovered a previously untouched palace from 600 bc belonging to the Assyrian king Sennacherib. Professor Eleanor Robson, chair of the British Institute for the Study of Iraq
, said, “Isil’s destruction has actually led us to a fantastic find.”
Sennacherib was a powerful, proud king who conquered forty-six Judean cities during the reign of Hezekiah. He carried away two hundred thousand captives and besieged Jerusalem for a time, but he did not take the city. He called Hezekiah “a prisoner in Jerusalem … like a bird in a cage.” But Sennacherib was pulled away from attacking the city by other pressing matters in his kingdom.
When he returned, his messengers threatened Hezekiah with terrifying descriptions of what would happen if the king refused to surrender. The king of Judah sought the Lord and through the prophet Isaiah, God promised His protection. In the end, an “angel of the Lord went out, and killed in the camp of the Assyrians one hundred and eighty-five thousand; and when people arose early in the morning, there were the corpses—all dead” (2 Kings 19:35). When Sennacherib returned home, he was later struck down by his own sons.
Often, when we feel surrounded by the enemy and the future looks hopeless, God is close to us. Even in the face of destruction, the Lord can open up a new future. Like the destructive acts of ISIS on the tomb of Jonah—which revealed another confirmation of Bible history—even the worst actions of the devil against us can end up glorifying God.
Explore further! Click here
to listen to Doug Batchelor tell the story of God’s victory over Sennacherib.