Dead Sea in the Bible:
It is called the Salt Sea in Num. 34:3, 12;
the Sea in Ez. 47:8;
Eastern Sea in Joel 2:20;
Lake Asphaltitus in NT times. Num. 34:3, 12, Salt Sea is Israel’s east border;
1 Sam.22:3-5, David took his family to Moab by crossing the Dead Sea on the Lisan, possibly in a dry year;
2 Chr. 20, Ammon, Moab, Edom cross on the Lisan from the east to surprise attack Jehoshaphat;
Joel 2:20, God promises to drive the locusts into the Eastern and Western Sea (Dead and Mediterranean Sea);
Jeremiah 17:6, trust in man is like a bush planted by the Dead Sea;
Ez. 47:8-11, in the future the Dead Sea will become fresh and fishermen will line its banks.
The Dead Sea is 75 miles long and 11 miles wide. It is the lowest point on earth at 1,350 feet below sea level. The northern 2/3 is very deep (1,200 feet), but the southern section is very shallow (less than 20 feet). A piece of land called the Lisan Peninsula projects from the east side dividing the northern 2/3 from the shallow southern 1/3.(“lisan” is Arabic tongue) due to the high level of minerals (or, salt) left behind the 7 million tons of water that evaporate each day.
The Dead Sea is 10 times saltier than the ocean. A large factory on the southwest shore employs 1,600 people to extract the valuable mineral potash which is used to produce fertilizer. In ancient times people, including King Herod, would soak in the water for healing. Aristotle wrote of it and Cleopatra sought to extract its medical value. Today cosmetics and herbal products are produced from the minerals. All year long the Dead Sea has sunny skies and dry air. The Dead Sea water level is decreasing because of irrigation of water out of the Jordan River before it reaches the Sea. The southern 1/3 is often dry unless the company called the Dead Sea Works uses a canal to keep water flowing into the southern 1/3 so they can convert the minerals in their plant.