TV Production – Where David Slew Goliath
The battle between David and Goliath is perhaps the most famous battle of individuals in human history. The only source of the battle is the Bible, but it provides a detailed description of both the battle and its aftermath. In 2019, Rene Schlaepfer and I drove to the Ella Valley. Rene was producing a whole series about David, and also got to film in the City of David. At the battle site, we tried our skills in operating a sling, and then drove up to Azeqah and reviewed the battle.
The Reality Behind the Battle
Although the Book of Samuel presents the battle in detail, many aspects of the battle are still not clear. It is not totally clear where every army camped, and where exactly the battle took place. However, it had to take place somewhere along the brook of the Ellah stream, as pebbles are mentioned in the story. Furthermore, in another Biblical passage, it states that Elhanan was the one to slay Goliath, not David (2 Sam. 21:19). It seems that the story was written centuries after the event took place, and that is why some basic parts of it are not clear. One thing is clear – the battle made David famous, and eventually led him to the throne.
Touring the Ellah Valley
The Ellah Valley lies in the heart of Shephelah. Road 38 crosses this valley, and next to its junction with road 383 it is possible to park the car and walk into the brook looking for pebbles. Azeqah is a high hill west of the valley. Several archaeological expeditions have excavated at the site, yet to this day it has not developed into a proper archaeological park. Nevertheless, it is a great vista to read the Biblical passages about the battle of David and Goliath, and review it.
A tour of the Ellah Valley can be combined with a day tour of the Shephelah.