House of Yahweh (biblical term)

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The House of YHWH (or "House of Yahweh", "House of the LORD", Hebrew בית יהוה) is a phrase found in the Hebrew Bible and on at least one inscription, usually referring to a temple.

Most modern religious scholars focus primarily upon Solomon's Temple. However, there have been two other structures identified as a 'House of Yahweh'. One is located in Elephantine Egypt. The other structure suggested as a House of Yahweh is at Tel Arad.

In 1962 Yohanan Aharoni excavated at Tel Arad the only Judean temple recovered by archaeologists to date. The incense altars and two "standing stones" may have been dedicated to Yahweh and Asherah.[1] An inscription was found on the site by Ahroni mentioning a 'House of Yahweh', which William G. Dever suggests may have referred to the temple at Arad or the temple at Jerusalem.[2][3] However, the temple was probably demolished around 700 CE, which is before the date of the inscription.[4]

The "New Testament" refers to the phrase "house of God" in Mark 2:26; Luke 6:4; 1 Timothy 3:15; Hebrews 10:21; and 1 Peter 4:17. "Jesus of Nazareth" quotes Isaiah 56:7 – "... My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations" (NKJV) – in Matthew 21:13; Mark 11:17; and Luke 19:46.

See also[edit]

Elephantine papyri


  1. ^ Mazar, Amihai. “The Divided Monarchy: Comments on Some Archaeological Issues.” Pages 159–80 in The Quest for the Historical Israel: Debating Archaeology and the History of Early Israel (Archaeology and Biblical Studies) Society of Biblical Literature (Sep 2007) ISBN 978-1-58983-277-0 p.176
  2. ^ Aharoni, Yohanan (1981). Arad Inscriptions. University of Virginia: Israel Exploration Society. Retrieved 2008-09-15.
  3. ^ Dever, William G. What Did the Biblical Writers Know and When Did They Know It?: What Archaeology Can Tell Us About the Reality of Ancient Israel Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (June 2002) ISBN 978-0-8028-2126-3 p.212
  4. ^ King, Philip J.; Lawrence E. Stager Life in Biblical Israel Westminster/John Knox Press, U.S.; 1 edition (19 April 2002) ISBN 978-0-664-22148-5 p.314