Jerusalem Timeline

After reading through a number of articles and a few books dealing with modern dispensational millenialist viewpoints on prophecy, I decided to take a look at the underlying assumptions in their interpretation of especially the (pseudo-)prophecies of Daniel. One thing that stands out glaringly is the capricious nature of their selection of succession of nations or kingdoms which are fitted to the various metals, horns, or beasts of the visions in Daniel. That which seems to me entirely obvious, and beyond debate, is the fact that these “prophecies” are clearly centered on Jerusalem, the rulership of which is the central concern of the author. This should similarly be the central concern of one seeking to interpret these “visions” in particular regards to their original setting.

In order to learn whether the rulership of Jerusalem after the Seleucid age would display any discernible patterns to which Daniel’s imagery might be applied, I put together the timeline below. Where I have found precise dates, I have used them. My primary conclusion, which I had already suspected, is that it’s beyond doubt that any so-called historicist position is simply not tenable given Jerusalem as the center of the prophecies. The history of Jerusalem is one of many conquerers and many conquered. There is no way to tie this history to a limited series of changes of dominion represented by the spectacular imagery of Daniel subsequent to the original Seleucid period to which it first applied. At such a large scale as the change of dominion over Jerusalem between nations, which is usually the scale at which these various modern interpreters work at, there is no pattern which fits. Certainly none of the traditionally claimed equations are valid.

I may work on the presentation a bit more, but the initial version given here will, I think, suffice.

Native local rulers ???-1550? BCE
Egyptian overlords 1550?-1200?
Canaanites 1200?-1000?
Judah House of David 1000?-587
(Shishak takes Jerusalem’s treasures 928)
(Assyrians besiege Jerusalem 701)
Babylonians Babylonians 587-536
Persians Persians 536-332
(Artaxerxes III burns Jerusalem 350)
Greeks Alexander 332-323
Ptolemids 323-200
Seleucids 200-164
Jews Hasmoneans 164-63
Rome Pompey takes Jerusalem 63
Jews Herod the Great 37-4
Archelaus 4 BCE-6 CE
Rome Roman Procurators 6-41
Jews Herod Agrippa I 41-44
Rome Roman procurators 44-66
Jews Jewish Revolt 66-70
Rome Romans 70-132
Jews Bar Kokhba 132-135
Rome Romans/Byzantines 135-4 May 614
Persians Persians take Jerusalem 4 May 614
Rome Romans/Byzantines retake Jerusalem 628
Muslims Omar takes Jerusalem 638
Ummayads 660-750
Abbassids begin summer 750
Tulunids annex Palestine to Egypt 878
Abbassids retake Palestine 905-940
Ikhshidis take Egypt 941
(Fatimids take Egypt 969)
Fatimids take Palestine 970-972
(Great earthquake in Jerusalem 5 Dec 1033)
Seljuks take Jerusalem summer 1073
Fatimids retake Jerusalem summer 1098
Crusaders Crusaders take Jerusalem 15 July 1099
Muslims Saladin takes Jerusalem 2 October 1187
Ayyubids 2 Oct 1187-18 Feb 1229
Crusaders Frederick II given ruined Jerusalem 18 Feb 1229-1239
Muslims al Nasir al Daud of Kerak 1239-1241
Crusaders Franks 1241-23 Aug 1244
Muslims Khwarizmian Turks take Jerusalem 23 Aug 1244-1260
(Mamluks defeat Mongols at Ayn Jalut 3 Sept 1260)
Mamluk 1260-1516
(Baybars sacks Jerusalem, Bethlehem churches 1263)
Ottoman 1516-11 Dec 1917
(Mohammed Ali of Egypt rules Jerusalem 1832-1840)
British British 11 Dec 1917-14 May 1948
Muslims Jordanian 14 May 1948-7 June 1967
Jews Israel 7 June 1967-present