At the battle of Aphek the Philistines defeated the Israelites in the days of Eli and Samuel (1 Sam. 4:1-11). Look at map to see Shiloh, where the tabernacle was, and Aphek. Both are in the tribal territory of Ephraim.
The best evidence is that it was then that the Philistines destroyed Shiloh. Ample traces of this destruction were found in the excavations. Israel Finkelstein wrote,
This complex of buildings [buildings in location designated area C] was destroyed by a violent conflagration whose traces were visible everywhere: charred floors and heaps of fallen bricks, sometimes more than one meter deep (some of the bricks were visibly baked by the fierce fire). Here and there parts of the fallen roof were identifiable. As suggested by Albright following the Danish expedition’s excavations, this may be attributable to the Philistine destruction of the site (mid-eleventh century BCE) (The New Encyclopedia of Archaeological Excavations in the Holy Land, IV.1368).
This photo shows some of the excavations at Shiloh.
Following the destruction of Shiloh, the tabernacle was at Gibeon in the days of David and Solomon, until Solomon built the temple in Jerusalem. We plan to follow-up on that in subsequent posts.
Moving ahead to the Byzantine Period, churches have been found from the fifth and sixth centuries AD. A section of Mosaic floor may be seen in our photo.
To see the remains of Bible places can be tremendous help in visualizing the biblical text, don’t you agree?
Remember to click on images for higher resolution.