- For many years now, there has been a popular theory among
some Bible believing people that Petra holds a special place
in Biblical prophecy. This idea has permeated many sectors of
Christianity, and has left us puzzled as to it's origin. After
some research we believe we have discovered the source of this
interesting, if not somewhat controversial theory. It seems that
it all began with a man in the USA, known as W. E. Blackstone.
This man was so certain that Petra would be the secret hideout
of Jews escaping from the Battle of Armageddon, that he invested
$8000.00 (in the 1940's) to place boxes of Bibles in all of the
caves in Petra, so that the Jews would have some interesting
reading when they were hiding from the ravages of war. This idea
was picked up by Joseph Hoffman Cohn of the American Board of
Missions to the Jews and published in a small booklet titled:
The Man from Petra. We have now obtained a copy
of this book, and have reproduced it in full on Nabataea.net.
The first part of the book deals with Cohn's theory of how the
Battle of Armageddon will take place and how the Jews will use
the ancient city of Petra as a hideout during the war. The most
interesting part of the book comes on pages 16
and 17. I'm sure you will find it interesting reading. If
you want to access all of this small booklet, please click here:
The Man from Petra.
- Some Mistakes in the Booklet
- Page 5: The city of Amman is associated with Teman or
Maan, rather than with Ramath-Ammon it's ancient name. Teman
is in Arabia. Maan is in southern Jordan.
- Page 5: Petra is a city set on a rock, nearly 1500 feet
high, arising with sudden and sheer height from the surrounding
desert. Not so, Petra is located in a valley, not on a mountain
top. On the east side you can look down on it from the hills.
On the west side the valleys empty out into Wadi Araba.
- Page 5: Petra once had 267,000 inhabitants. Wow, where
did this number come from? No archeologist has ever set a number.
Once a journalist suggested 30,000, and this number has been
hotly debated. Since the mian part of the city has not yet been
excavated any guess is simply a guess.
- Page 12: The buildings cut from solid rock are still standing,
enough of them to accommodate 100,000 people in comfort.
Sorry, but there are less than 1000 monuments in Petra, and most
of them are small tombs, not buildings or houses.
While visiting Petra with several army
and air force officers I asked them about the suitability of
Petra as a hiding place for thousands of people during a modern
war. These officers scoffed at the idea. Petra is located in
a wide, open valley. Most of the caves are very shallow, not
more than 100 - 200 feet deep, with large doors. Modern aircraft
and bombs would have little difficulty dealing with anyone hiding
in these caves. However, if the caves were full of civilians,
they might simply be ignored.