In A Palace At Qeifaya, David Savored His Victory Over Goliath
The young monarch built a city in the Elah Valley that reflected his need to show strength and to ensure protection.
Now the Philistines gathered their forces for war and assembled at Sokoh in Judah. They pitched camp between Sokoh and Azekah. Saul and the Israelites camped in the Valley of Elah. . . The Philistines occupied one hill and the Israelites another, with the valley between them.” (1 Samuel 17:1-3).
Imagine this, if you will:
Mighty King David, accompanied by his sons Shimea, Shobab, Nathan, and Solomon, journeys from Jerusalem to a city located above a valley. Turning it into a fun boys-only hike, they walk the entire distance and reach their goal in less than a day.
As the sun sets, David and his progeny stand on the balcony of a large and impressive palace. David points to the southeast, towards Sokhoh, then shows them Azeka further west. Finally, they all gaze down, into the Elah Valley. With just the right amount of pride and pathos in his voice, King David tells his sons how he saved the day for the Jews by vanquishing the giant Goliath with just a sling and a stone.
Pretty far-fetched, you say? Yet in 2007, two archaeologists from the Hebrew University and Israel Antiquities Authority discovered ruins from an ancient city overlooking the Elah Valley. Excavations continued for seven seasons, and when completed the Hebrew University’s Prof. Yossi Garfinkel and archaeologist Saar Ganor of the IAA made their unique findings public: They had uncovered a typical Judean city and major administrative center on the Philistine border. And it dated back to the time of David.