Motza | Ancient Temple of Motza

Motza, also called Mozah or Motsa, is south of the Tel Aviv–Jerusalem highway and is a settlement on the western edge of Jerusalem. It is located in the Judean Mountains at an altitude of about 600 meters above sea level. Motza is linked to Jerusalem by the highway above and a winding mountain road via Har Nof. Founded in 1854, Motza was the first Jewish moshav established outside the city in modern timesWalls of the old town was founded. 

The excavations, organized by Israeli archaeologist Michael Eisenberg, uncovered two houses from the Second Temple period, similar to those found in the Old City of Jerusalem. Not far from the source of Eïn-Motza are Byzantine-era ruins decorated with imposing mosaics. The head is about 300 meters west of the settlement of Motza. In the Middle Ages, the Crusaders built one on the same site fortress-like many others on the way to Jerusalem. Away from today’s road to Motza, only part of the sandstone wall, one meter long, remains of the fortress.

Further excavations at Motza in 2012/2013 unearthed a temple at Motza. A large building that contained clear elements of ritual use and dates to the 9th century BC. was dated. A rare stash of ritual objects near the facility had tiny ceramic figurines of people and animals. An analysis of the animal bones found on the site revealed that they belonged only to kosher animals. Excavations at the site continued into 2013, led by archaeologists Shua Kisilevitz, Zvi Greenhut, and Anna Eirikh-Rose on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA).

History of the ancient city of Motza

The Temple of Tel Motza is an ancient Israelite temple in the Motza area. Israeli archaeologists discovered it on the western outskirts of Jerusalem in 2012. The site is ​​almost 4,000 square meters and is 7 kilometers from Jerusalem. Excavations at Tel Motza, conducted before the construction of Highway 1, revealed a public building. Some storehouses and silos from the time of the United Kingdoms of Israel and Judah (Iron Age IIA).

The death of King Solomon broke the United Kingdom. The individual kingdoms of Israel and Judah emerged, and Israel was more prominent in the north than the southern kingdom of Judah. The United Kingdom’s period is 1025 – 928 BC. Dated. This period is known as the Iron Age IIA.

A broad, east-facing entrance in the wall of the public building is believed to have been constructed by ancient Near East temple-building traditions. Rising in the east, the sun illuminated an object placed inside the temple to symbolize divine presence. Several sacred clay vessels, chalices, and small figures of men and horses were found near the temple’s altar. The hiding place of holy holes was in the early 9th century B.C. Dated before the centralizing religious reforms of the kings Hezekiah (reigned c . 729–687 B.C.) and Josiah (reigned c. 640–609 B.C.) of Judah.

Excavations in the scriptural city of Motza

The discovery of a 9,000-year-old village in Motza opens new perspectives for scholars. It testifies to the presence in the region of a critical Neolithic civilization, which has been ignored until now. Excavations have brought to light large residential buildings with, sometimes, plaster floors, public structures, spaces dedicated to worship, and burials. Walkways were created between the buildings, testifying to an advanced, airy architectural and urban planning level. According to the Haaretz newspaper, the houses in Motza at the time were “built with earth bricks. That has long since disintegrated, but the foundations of the buildings in large stone bricks are still visible.”

The site of the temple is directly under a bridge on Highway No.1 – Te Aviv – Jerusalem. In the vicinity of Motza. Due to the plan to change the road layout in this area, Israeli archaeologists already carried out an emergency excavation in 2012. However, not all questions could be fully clarified due to time constraints. Some finds, such as the possible presence of a Canaanite storm god, have been interpreted as further evidence that the Judaean religion (“Yahwism”) dated. The First Temple period differed significantly from the monotheistic Judaism presented much later in the Bible.

motza in the bible

Representation of the city of Motza

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The older portion of the excavations was scheduled to be completed in 2019 following development-led excavation at 16 Jerusalem Road. This huge 9000-year-old prehistoric settlement has been uncovered around Motza and near Jerusalem. The holes are still ongoing. The temple area will be examined more closely – with the help of international teams – because many questions are unanswered here.


Therefore, the temple of Motza dates from the kingdom of Judah in the 9th century BC. And seems to have been used contemporaneously with the First Temple nearby Jerusalem. Jerusalem was the center of the Kingdom of Judah. According to the Hebrew Bible, the seat of Kings David and Solomon. Many historical finds from different eras have been discovered in the Tel Motza area. And archaeologists have tried to classify them as those in the Old Testament to identify the biblical settlement of Motza and mentioned in the book of Joshua ( Joshua 18:26 ).

The archaeological site directors said the discoveries provided evidence of the temples’ existence. And ritual enclosing areas throughout the Kingdom of Judah before the religious reforms centralized ritual practices at the Temple in Jerusalem. The temple was a rare find of remains from the First Temple period. Indeed, animal bones were found at the site showing signs of lacerations, possibly indicating they were sacrificial animals acted. The finds on the earth during the first excavations, together with the discovery of the first remains of buildings. Therefore, statuettes and bones of domesticated animals in the temple area and the vicinity date in part to about 7,000 BC. Back.