Biblical Sheshonk invasion confirmed.


Sheshonk was an Egyptian meshwesh king as well as the founder of the 22nd Dynasty. He reigned for about 21 years from 943 – 922 BC, and in the Old Testament books of 1 Kings (11:40, 14:25), and 2 Chronicles (12:2-9) he is mentioned by the name Shishaq.  Many details, and much of what know about his reign is carved into the Bubastite Portal. According to our Old Testament sources he invades Judah during the 5th year of the reign of king Rehoboam. 1 Kings tells us that “In the fifth year of King Rehoboam, King Shishak of Egypt marched against Jerusalem,” and according to 2 Chronicles (12:2): “Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem…”

The invasion was successful and he ransacked the temple created by Solomon. He took everything including the “shields of gold” that Solomon had made (2 Chronicles 12:9), an invasion that has been archaeologically corroborated by a stela found at Megiddo, according to Egyptologist Kenneth Kitchen “… explicit records of a campaign into Canaan (scenes; a long list of Canaanite place-names from the Negev to Galilee; stelae), including a stela [found] at Megiddo” supports the traditional interpretation” (1).

According to the testimony of the influential 19th century philologist Jean-François Champollion, it was “In this wonderful palace, I observed the portraits of most of the old Pharaohs known for their great deeds…. we see people fighting enemies Mandoueï of Egypt, and returning in triumph to his homeland, farther campaigns Ramses-Sesostris also Sésonchis dragging the foot of the Theban Triad (Amun, Mut and Khonsu) defeating thirty conquered nations, among which I found, as it should be, in full, Ioudahamalek, the kingdom of Judah, or the Jews. This matches the commentary in 1 Kings 14, which recounts the successful arrival of Sésonchis at Jerusalem: the identity that we have established between the Egyptian Sheschonck the Sésonchis of Manetho and Scheschôk or Shishak of the Bible, is confirmed in the most satisfactory manner” (2).

Convincing lines of evidence support the Sheshonk invasion. We have textual evidence from the Bible (1 Kings, 2 Chronicles) as well as archaeological evidence (Megiddo Stele) that supports this position.


1. Kitchen, K.. 2003. On the Reliability of the Old Testament. p. 607.

2. Champollio, J. Lettres ecrites d’Egypte et de Nubie en 1828.

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