Backgrounders on the Bible through Biblical Archaeology

818 – 820 Jeremiah’s Cistern & Warren’s Shaft


We’re pulling a series of programs out of THE BOOK & THE SPADE archives again this week. One of the most fascinating parts of our last BOOK & THE SPADE tour for me was the opportunity for a private visit to the City of David area. This came about out of a meeting several weeks previous at the National Religious Broadcasters convention where I had run into Rabbi Yehuda Mali, of the Ir David Foundation. I did an interview on some of the most recent excavation activity in Ir David (the city of David area, the oldest part of Jerusalem). And then I told him I would meet him in just a few weeks in Jerusalem for a first hand look. I don’t know if he believed me or not.

But when our tour got to Jerusalem I managed to get a couple of free hours, walked over to the City of David area, and just as I walked in happened to meet Rabbi Mali. He connected me with a wonderful guide named Betsy Melman. There were a couple of other folks also looking for a tour, so around we went.

Our first stop was an observation platform, where we were oriented to the area. Then we went down into a deep hole, into an underground water storage pit that’s been dubbed Jeremiah’s cistern. It’s related to the story in the book of Jeremiah, chapter 38, where King Zedekiah imprisoned the prophet in a muddy cistern. And you know, it just could be the place. The conditions are right, even though there’s no official confirmation, yet.

The tour continued on to Warren’s Shaft and from there to the area of Gihon Spring. Along the way we encountered a ghost of Montague Parker.

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