MembersWhy Did King David Choose Jerusalem as His Capital?

Everyone knows that King David elected to have the city of Jerusalem as his capital.

By Aviel Schneider | | Topics: history
Photo: Mendy Hechtman/Flash90

But why? Why didn’t the young Israelite king select some other city? At the time, Hebron, Beit El and Shechem were equally significant as cities in the land of Canaan. The reasons for David choosing Jerusalem were primarily political, economic and strategic, and, if we read between the lines, this is implied in the biblical text.

It is true that Jerusalem is also, or perhaps even primarily, always linked to the offering of Isaac on Mount Moriah (Gen. 22). Yet, this passage speaks of a “land” of Moriah, and not a Mount Moriah (Gen. 22:2). A connection between Mount Moriah and the Jewish temple only comes up later in 2 Chronicles 3:1, where we read that “Solomon began to build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where the Lord had appeared to his father David, at the place that David had prepared, on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite.”

King David chose Jerusalem wisely. If he had selected another city as the capital of Israel it would have caused conflicts to break out among the tribes, each of...

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