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Life: Nebuchadnezzar II was the eldest son and successor of Nabopolassar, who delivered Babylon from its dependence on Assyria and laid Nineveh in ruins. According to Berossus, some years before he became king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar II married Amytis of Media, the daughter or granddaughter of Cyaxares, king of the Medes, and thus the Median and Babylonian dynasties were united. There are conflicting accounts of Nitocris of Babylon either being his wife or daughter. Nabopolassar was intent on annexing the western provinces of Syria from Necho II (who was still hoping to restore Assyrian power), and to this end dispatched his son westward with a large army. In the ensuing Battle of Carchemish in 605 BC, the Egyptian army was defeated and driven back, and Syria and Phoenicia were brought under the control of Babylon. Nabopolassar died in August that year, and Nebuchadnezzar returned to Babylon to ascend to the throne. -- Nebuchadnezzar faces off against Zedekiah, the last king of Judah, who holds a plan of Jerusalem, in a Baroque era depiction in Zwiefalten Abbey, Germany. After the defeat of the Cimmerians and Scythians, all of Nebuchadnezzar's expeditions were directed westwards, although the powerful Median empire lay to the north. Nebuchadnezzar's political marriage to Amytis of Media, the daughter of the Median king, had ensured peace between the two empires. -- Nebuchadnezzar engaged in several military campaigns designed to increase Babylonian influence in Syria and Judah. An attempted invasion of Egypt in 601 BC was met with setbacks, however, leading to numerous rebellions among the states of the Levant, including Judah. Nebuchadnezzar soon dealt with these rebellions, capturing Jerusalem in 597 BC and deposing King Jehoiakim, then in 587 BC due to rebellion, destroying both the city and the temple, and deporting many of the prominent citizens along with a sizable portion of the Jewish population of Judea to Babylon. These events are described in the Prophets (Nevi'im) and Writings (Ketuvim), sections of the Hebrew Bible (in the books 2 Kings and Jeremiah, and 2 Chronicles, respectively). After the destruction of Jerusalem, Nebuchadnezzar engaged in a thirteen year siege of Tyre (585-572 BC), which ended in a compromise, with the Tyrians accepting Babylonian authority. -- Following the pacification of Tyre, Nebuchadnezzar turned again to Egypt. A clay tablet, now in the British Museum, states: "In the 37th year of Nebuchadnezzar, king of the country of Babylon, he went to Mitzraim (Egypt) to wage war. Amasis, king of Egypt, collected [his army], and marched and spread abroad." Having completed the subjugation of Phoenicia, and a campaign against Egypt, Nebuchadnezzar set himself to rebuild and adorn the city of Babylon, and constructed canals, aqueducts, temples and reservoirs. [article link]

wikipedia.org: Nabonidus - Nabonidus son of Nebuchadnezzar was the last King of the Babylonian Empire, reigning from 556-539 BC - Being a co-ruler with his son Belshazzar - {Note: Where Joseph was made 2nd in charge in Egypt (Genesis 41:40) because Pharaoh Akhenaten did not yet have a son, the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar had a son Nabonidus so Daniel was made 3rd ruler in Babylon (Daniel 5:7).}

Reign: In most ancient accounts, Nabonidus is depicted as a royal anomaly. He is supposed to have worshiped the moon god Sin beyond all the other gods, to have paid special devotion to Sin's temple in Harran, where his mother was a priestess, and to have neglected the Babylonian primary god, Marduk. Because of the tensions that these religious reforms generated, he had to leave the capital for the desert oasis of Tayma in Arabia early in his reign, from which he only returned after many years. In the meantime, his son Belshazzar ruled from Babylon, supposedly in the manner of an oriental despot. [article link]

wikipedia.org: Belshazzar - Belshazzar, or Balthazar was a 6th century BC prince of Babylon, the son of Nabonidus and the last king of Babylon according to the Book of Daniel

In 540 BC, Nabonidus returned from Tayma, hoping to defend his kingdom from the Persians [4th Global Gentile Kingdom] who were planning to advance on Babylon. Belshazzar was positioned in the city of Babylon to hold the capital, while Nabonidus marched his troops north to meet Cyrus. On October 10, 539 BC, Nabonidus surrendered and fled from Cyrus. Two days later the Persian armies overthrew the city of Babylon. -- "Daniel 8:1-3 In the third year of the reign of King Belshazzar a vision appeared unto me, even unto me Daniel, after that which appeared unto me at the first. And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai." -- "Daniel 5:1-7 Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand. Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem; that the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, might drink therein. Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank in them. They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone. In the same hour came forth fingers of a man's hand, and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaister of the wall of the king's palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. Then the king's countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another. The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. ..." [article link]

Dictionary.com: Chimera (noun) - 1. a mythological, fire-breathing monster, commonly represented with a lion's head, a goat's body, and a serpent's tail - an artificially produced [DNA modified] individual [or animal] having tissues of several species {Note: The 7 human Kingdoms on earth all have had a Mascot creature depicted usually as a multi species 'Chimera' or as a mythical Phoenix [eagle] type of being. Beginning with [1] the Tower of Babel and the lion/serpent (Christ - Antichrist) [mixed] chimera, [2] the human headed lions of Egypt (with a cobra, serpent 3rd eye), [3] the Dragon (Mushhushshu - "splendor serpent" ) of Babylon, [4] the Griffin (head of an eagle, body of a lion) of Persia, [5] the Minotaur (head of a bull, body of a human) imprisoned in a labyrinth of ancient Greece. [6] The divine eagle of Rome and [7] the later double headed [Eastern and Western Roman Empire] (cloned, divine eagle - Phoenix, chimera) of Emperor Constantine's empire [Roman Emperor from 306 A.D. to 337 A.D.] the beginning of the 7th Kingdom the 'Revised Roman Empire' that is cumulating into the coming modern NWO one world government.}

Chimera: Chi·me·ra [ki-meer-uh]-noun, 1. (often initial capital letter) a mythological, fire-breathing monster, commonly represented with a lion's head, a goat's body, and a serpent's tail. 2. any similarly grotesque monster having disparate parts, esp. as depicted in decorative art. 3. a horrible or unreal creature of the imagination; a vain or idle fancy: He is far different from the chimera your fears have made of him. 4. Genetics. an organism composed of two or more genetically distinct tissues, as an organism that is partly male and partly female, or an artificially produced individual having tissues of several species. [article link]

Dragon of the [Babyon] Ishtar Gate by David G Stone - The Dragon of the Ishtar Gate may be one of Cryptozoology's strangest, yet best-documented, ancient crypids - This two and a half millennium old depiction is so unusual that many treat it as a chimera, an impossible combination of animals that could never have existed in nature - But the people of ancient Babylon knew and accepted the 'dragon' as real, as real as the bulls and lions that also share the walls - It was Koldeway who recognized the animal as the mushhushshu, a name derived from an Akkadian word that is loosely translated as "splendor serpent"

The Dragon of the Ishtar Gate may be one of Cryptozoology's strangest, yet best-documented, ancient crypids. This two and a half millennium old depiction is so unusual that many treat it as a chimera, an impossible combination of animals that could never have existed in nature. But the people of ancient Babylon knew and accepted the 'dragon' as real, as real as the bulls and lions that also share the walls. -- The Ishtar Gate itself was one of eight entrances to the ancient city of Babylon. Built during the reign of King Nebuchadnezzar II (604-562 BC) and dedicated to the goddess Ishtar it was the main entrance to the city until the final fall of Babylon sometime in the 1st or 2nd century AD. (King Nebuchadnezzar also constructed one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, a marvel filled with exotic plants and animals.) -- The Dedicatory Inscription on the Ishtar Gate reads: Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon, the faithful prince appointed by the will of Marduk, the highest of princely princes, beloved of Nabu, of prudent counsel, who has learned to embrace wisdom, who fathomed their divine being and reveres their majesty, the untiring governor, who always takes to heart the care of the cult of Esagila and Ezida and is constantly concerned with the well-being of Babylon and Borsippa, the wise, the humble, the caretaker of Esagila and Ezida, the firstborn son of Nabopolassar, the King of Babylon. -- Both gate entrances of Imgur-Ellil and Nemetti-Ellil following the filling of the street from Babylon had become increasingly lower. Therefore, I pulled down these gates and laid their foundations at the water table with asphalt and bricks and had them made of bricks with blue stone on which wonderful bulls and dragons were depicted. I covered their roofs by laying majestic cedars length-wise over them. I hung doors of cedar adorned with bronze at all the gate openings. I placed wild bulls and ferocious dragons in the gateways and thus adorned them with luxurious splendor so that people might gaze on them in wonder - I let the temple of Esiskursiskur (the highest festival house of Markduk, the Lord of the Gods a place of joy and celebration for the major and minor gods) be built firm like a mountain in the precinct of Babylon of asphalt and fired bricks. The ruins of the gate and walls were discovered and excavated between 1899 and 1914 by Robert Koldeway, a German archeologist and architect. After its excavation the entire Gate was shipped to Berlin where it was reconstructed and now resides at the Pergamon Museum. It was Koldeway who recognized the animal as the mushhushshu, a name derived from an Akkadian word that is loosely translated as "splendor serpent." Early researchers mistakenly read it as sirrussu but the word has now been properly translitereated as musrussu, with mushhushshu as the commonly-accepted modern form.
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What is the Tower of Babel? The Tower of Babel is a fascinating story which helped the ancients understand God - The story of the Tower of Babel doesn't take place in a vacuum - It falls in between Noah's flood and the call of Abraham - The parable [from the events of Babel] tells us that the road without God is doomed to disaster - The citizens of Babel thought that they were able, technologically, to challenge God's leadership - Man's pride, vanity and lust for power need to come under God's authority - That is the theological lesson of this section of scripture - They are the only kinds of lessons the Bible gives

The call of Abraham comes about as God decides to form a people of his own to carry the knowledge and worship of Him into the world. The Flood did not stem man's evil ways and the activities around the Tower of Babel showed that man loves himself more than any God. The glory of man is what was sought with that tower, not the glory of God. So, in Abraham, God forms a people who will glorify Him. -- The story of Babel comes at a point after the flood where everyone is seen as a descendant of Noah. Genesis 10 and 11 is a genealogy from Noah to Abraham and an attempt to classify everyone in the known world as a descendant. I say "known" world because as far as these early Hebrews were concerned the world was flat and rested on pillars. The sky was a shell with stars fastened to it. Ethiopia was as far south as they could identify, Iran to the east, Armenia to the north and Greece to the west. They had heard of a place called Tarshish (Spain - also possibly Britain) but weren't sure. Jonah had tried to go there because it was as far as he could imagine going. -- The whole story of Babel lasts for only nine verses, Genesis 11: 1-9. Its fame has far exceeded the space that the compilers of Genesis have given it in the Holy Scriptures. Just before we are given the names of the descendants of Shem (Shemites or Semites) whose line brings us to Abraham, the story of the Tower of Babel is inserted. What could be the significance of this little parable at this point in Bible history? -- Of course, the ancients wanted to know why and how we all came to be speaking different languages. If Noah and his sons repopulated the world shouldn't we all speak their language? Verses ten to twenty six bring us from Shem to Abraham. The story of Babel is there to explain to a primitive society how we get from Noah to Abraham with so many different languages having developed in so short a time. What could be the cause of this impediment to human cooperation and understanding? -- The choice of the name "Babel" is not an accident. The reference to Babylon reflects the way that Babylon was abhorred by Hebrew society. Babylon represented everything that was wrong with humanity. As a city, Babylon was both envied and loathed. The city was beautiful and graced with streets and palaces. The hanging gardens of Babylon are one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. Writing and science were developing there. In the meantime, the Hebrews were a nomadic society concerned with day to day survival. Babylon represented oppression, cruelty and violence by which it remained powerful. -- So Babel (Babylon) is portrayed as a society where everyone speaks with the same language and through human cooperation attempt to climb to heaven on a tower. This is not a God centered society but a fellowship of men dedicated to elevating man to his proper position as God of this world. This is a theme often repeated in the Bible. The ziggurats stand as evidence against them. So Babylon gets the blame for confusion because they try to get up to God's level. The disdain that ancient Israel felt for Babylon is reflected in the Tower story. -- So, is this science or theology? There is no science in the Bible. There is no point looking for it there. The Bible is a theological manuscript. It is the story of God's dealings with humans from the viewpoint of an ancient society. Is Babel the reason for all of the various languages in the world? Of course it isn't. Is Babel a parable? The story of the Tower of Babel is a parable about mankind, where his heart is and how God feels about it. -- The account of Babel's tower is lousy history and terrible science. It is terrific theology. The final judgement against any society is its willingness to press forward in the name of progress without reference to or respect for God. The parable tells us that the road without God is doomed to disaster. The citizens of Babel thought that they were able, technologically, to challenge God's leadership. Man's pride, vanity and lust for power need to come under God's authority. That is the theological lesson of this section of scripture. They are the only kinds of lessons the Bible gives. [article link]

Update: The Basic Christian Info Feed will be on a short break - Returning with Nimrod [human race - relations - was Nimrod black?] and the Tower of Babel in the "8 Kingdoms of the World" study - An 8 Kingdom summary is postponed for a short while -- Wiki.com: The generic usage [of the word Adam] in Genesis meaning "mankind" reflects the view that Adam [red-man, all the human races are a part of the original creation glory of God, built into Adam, to help reveal the glory and expanse of God - a language confusion would come later at the fall of the Tower of Babel (Genesis 11:9)] was the ancestor of all men. Etymologically it is the masculine form of the word adamah meaning ground or earth and related to the words adom *(red), admoni *(ruddy) and dam *(blood) Gen. ii. 7 explains that the man was called Adam because he was formed from the ground *(adamah).

On a short break from posting for now but plan on continuing to research and work on the 8 Kingdoms project in the meantime so should have a lot of ordered material to post in the weeks to come. [article link]

4 The Kingdom of Persia

wikipedia: Cyrus the Great - Cyrus II of Persia [4th Global Gentile Kingdom] (600 BC or 576 BC-530 BC), commonly known as Cyrus the Great, also known as Cyrus the Elder - Under his rule, the [Persian] empire embraced all the previous civilized states of the ancient Near East, expanded vastly and eventually conquered most of Southwest Asia and much of Central Asia, parts of Europe and Caucasus - From the Mediterranean sea and Hellespont in the west to the Indus River in the east, Cyrus the Great created the largest empire the world had yet seen
The reign of Cyrus the Great lasted between 29 and 31 years. Cyrus built his empire by conquering first the Median Empire, then the Lydian Empire and eventually the Neo-Babylonian Empire. Either before or after Babylon, he led an expedition into central Asia, which resulted in major campaigns that were described as having brought "into subjection every nation without exception".[8] Cyrus did not venture into Egypt, as he himself died in battle, fighting the Massagetae along the Syr Darya in December 530 BC. He was succeeded by his son, Cambyses II, who managed to add to the empire by conquering Egypt, Nubia, and Cyrenaica during his short rule. -- Cyrus the Great respected the customs and religions of the lands he conquered. It is said that in universal history, the role of the Achaemenid empire founded by Cyrus lies in its very successful model for centralized administration and establishing a government working to the advantage and profit of its subjects. In fact, the administration of the empire through satraps and the vital principle of forming a government at Pasargadae were the works of Cyrus. Aside from his own nation, Persia (modern Iran), Cyrus the Great also left a lasting legacy on the Jewish religion through his Edict of Restoration, where because of his policies in Babylonia, he is referred to by the people of the Jewish faith, as "the anointed of the Lord" or a "Messiah". -- Cyrus the Great is also well recognized for his achievements in human rights, politics, and military strategy, as well as his influence on both Eastern and Western civilizations. To date, Cyrus the Great and his historical signature define the national identity for many Iranians. Cyrus and, indeed, the Achaemenid influence in the ancient world also extended as far as Athens, where many Athenians adopted aspects of the Achaemenid Persian(ancient Iranian) culture as their own, in a reciprocal cultural exchange. [article link]

The Tomb of Cyrus the Great - At the Pasargadae ruins in south-central Iran - (Photos)

The tomb of Cyrus is generally identified with a small stone monument approximately 1 km southwest of the palaces of Pasargadae, in the center of the Morgab plain. According to Greek sources, the tomb of Cyrus the Great was located in the royal park at Pasargadae. The most extensive description, based on a lost account by Aristobulus, who had accompanied Alexander of Macedon (q.v.) on his eastern campaign in the late 4th century B.C.E., is to be found in the Anabasis of Arrian (6.29), written in the 2nd century C.E.: -- The tomb: in the lower parts was built of stones cut square and was rectangular in form. Above, there was a stone chamber with a roof and a door leading into it so narrow that it was hard and caused much distress for a single man of low stature to get through. In the chamber lay a golden sarcophagus, in which Cyrus' body had been buried; a couch stood by its side with feet of wrought gold; a Babylonian tapestry served as a coverlet and purple rugs as a carpet. There was placed on it a sleeved mantle and other garments of Babylonian workmanship . . . Median trousers and robes dyed blue lay there, some dark, some of other varying shades, with necklaces, scimitars, and earrings of stones set in gold, and a table stood there. It was between the table and the couch that the sarcophagus containing Cyrus' body was placed. Within the enclosure and by the ascent to the tomb itself there was a small building put up for the Magians who used to guard Cyrus' tomb." -- Strabo (15.3.7), who wrote at the end of the 1st century B.C.E., also seems to have drawn on the account of Aristobulus; he described the tomb as "a small tower . . . solid below, and having a roof and sepulchre above, which latter had an extremely narrow entrance," and noted that another companion of Alexander, Onesicretus, had described the tomb as "a tower with ten stories," in the uppermost of which Cyrus lay. -- According to Arrian. an inscription in Persian characters on the tomb read, "Mortal! I am Cyrus son of Cambyses, who founded the Persian empire, and was King of Asia. Grudge me not then my monument." This inscription, with minor variations, was also mentioned by Strabo (15.3.7) and Plutarch (Alexander 69.4). -- The epitaph mentioned in the texts is not attested on any of the extant structures in the vicinity of Pasargadae. The identification of the stone structure, consisting of a gabled cella on a stepped plinth, on the Morgab plain as the tomb of Cyrus is based on its resemblance to the descriptions of Arrian and Strabo (Plate Lill). The building, which was incorporated into a mosque by the Salghurid Sa'd b. Zangi (601-28/1203-31; MelikianChirvani, pp. 3-4), is known locally [incorrectly] as Ma`shad-e Madar-a Solayman (the tomb of the mother of Solomon). [article link]

The Tomb of Cyrus at Pasargadae (Photo)

This tomb of the great Persian ruler, Cyrus, was discovered in 1951 at the ruins of Pasargadae (south-central Iran). Over 2500 years old, the tomb is in decent condition, made of white limestone and stands a total of 36 feet high. The tomb itself is 18 feet high resting on a 6 level base, also 18 feet high. It was built like a Ziggurat with Ionian and Lydian features. There is a small entrance and double doors leading to a room with no windows which once contained the "golden sarcophagus" of Cyrus, it is now an empty shell. Five huge stones make up its roof, which was slanted (gabled) to shed heavy rains. These Nordic gables were the architectural style of lands far to the north. The inscription was seen and recorded by Plutarch in AD 90. -- Parsagard "camp of the Persians" was the capital of Persia when Cyrus was ruling. After Cyrus had died Darius abandoned Pasargadae and made his capital 45 miles northeast at a place which came to be called Persepolis, "the city of the Persians" and the sacred heart of the Persian Empire. The ancient capital called Pasargadae by Cyrus was in his day a magnificent place, and many discoveries have been found including the four-winged genius, but it was nothing in comparison to the renowned Persepolis. -- Cyrus II, the Great was the founder and ruler of the vast Persian Empire from 539 B.C. until his death in 530 B.C. Once Cyrus had defeated the Median king, Astyages and took Ecbatana he expanded his kingdom defeating Croesus, king of Lydia in 546 BC, and then conquered Babylon in 539 BC, and the Persian Empire was formed. He was a generous ruler allowing various captives to return to their homelands, as recorded on the Cyrus Cylinder. Xenophon, Nabonidus and many others gave Cyrus praise for his generous leadership. -- The Decree of Cyrus: (2 Chronicles 36:22-23) Judea had remained a Persian province for the next two hundred years until the time that the Bible records "the decree of Cyrus" giving permission to the Hebrew captives to go back to Jerusalem to rebuild their Temple.
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