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Dan
by Galyn Wiemers, Generation Word

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Dan in the Bible:

Gen. 14:13-16, Abram left Hebron to go to Dan in order to rescue Lot.

Judges 18, tribe of Dan left its allotted inheritance by the Philistines and moved to this northern location.

1 Kings 12:26-33, Jeroboam set up one of his two golden calf idols in Dan to keep his people of Israel from going to Jerusalem in Judah to worship.

Dan

Dan (Canaanite’s Laish) is the northern extent of Israel in the Old Testament. The phrase “from Dan to Beersheba” meant all of Israel from the north to the south. Dan has an abundant supply of water including the Dan Spring that is the largest of four sources of water (Banias, Iyon and Hasbani Springs) that meet to form the Jordan River that feeds into the Sea of Galilee.

The Dan Inscription is an ancient inscription mentioning the House of David It was found by Avraham Biran near the Iron Age gate and likely written by Hazael of Damascus in 840 BC who erected it near the gate when he took the city. The Aramean king wrote that he killed both Israel’s and Judah’s king (similar to 2 Kings 9) and refers to Judah’s king as the House of David indicating that David’s royal line was still ruling in 840 BC, 160 years after David. This is the oldest contemporary textual reference to the Davidic line of kings and gives historical support for the existence of David.

Be sure to see these features:

  1. Middle Bronze Age Gate from 1800 BC made of mud bricks with four chambers and three sets of piers preserved under a rampart of soil
  2. Iron Age Gate built in the 800’s BC by Ahab
  3. Podium for King to sit on his throne by the gate or for the local.
  4. High Place of Jeroboam along with evidence of a four-horned altar, 3 iron shovels, a small altar and an iron incense holder have been found.

Dan

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Dan
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The golden calf shrine in Dan. This is the shrine set up when Jeroboam set up a golden calf in Bethel and Dan. The calf stood on the platform in the middle.
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Galyn at temple of golden calf
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Temple of golden calf
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Toni on temple steps
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Notice how the cut rock blocks where laid to construct the wall.
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Front steps of golden calf temple
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Stones set in place by Jeroboam's construction crew. Jeroboam himself was Solomon's building foreman (before he became king of the northern 10 tribes).
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Golden calf altar
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Golden calf sanctuary in Dan
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Front of golden calf platform
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This is a steel bar frame showing the size of the altar and the exact location that the altar sat. The altar itself has been dismantled. Possibly during the times of Hezekiah's or Josiah's reforms.
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Platform for Golden Calf
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Front right corner of platform
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Front of Golden Calf platform
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Golden Calf platform
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Stone memorial
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Dan - Israelite Gate
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Standing stone niche
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Judgement seat podium
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Close up of the circular stone bases for the wooden columns around the throne in the city gate of Dan.
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Close up of the circular stone bases for the wooden columns around the throne in the city gate of Dan.
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Close up of the circular stone bases for the wooden columns around the throne in the city gate of Dan.
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Judgement seat podium
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Judgement seat podium
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Judgement seat podium
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Gate system of Dan
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Plaza outside the gates of Dan
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Secondary gate
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Inside city of Dan
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High place of worship
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Innermost gate of city
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Inner city gate chamber
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Gate hinge socket
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As the visitor would turn and go past the royal seat they would enter the city of Dan.

Bronze Age Gate - 1750 BC

Middle Bronze Age Gate in Dan, Israel from about 1750 BC.
This gate system with its two towers on both sides of the entrance arch was built by the Canaanites of that time period. After Israel conquered this city of Dan they built a new gate system and covered this gate up with fill when they reinforced their defensive wall system and ramparts about 800 years later.

Abraham would have passed by this city of Dan and this Bronze Age Gate according to Genesis 14:14:
"When Abram heard that his kinsman had been taken captive, he led forth his trained men, born in his house, 318 of them, and went in pursuit as far as Dan." - Gn. 14:14

Water Springs

Israel-Syria Border