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Geocoding the Bible

The folks at OpenBible.info have geocoded the Bible. In other words, they went through the Bible and found the latitude and longitude of nearly all the places mentioned.

They’ve produced satellite maps and KMLs (for Google Earth) for every book in the Bible that mentions a place, and KMLs for every chapter. Even better, all the data and maps are available under a Creative Commons license.

Jonah provides one of the best examples of how maps can help you study the Bible:

The map shows Joppa in modern Israel, Nineveh to the northeast in modern Iraq, and Tarshish far to the west in modern Spain.

Jonah starts out near Joppa. God tells him to go to Nineveh, so what does Jonah do? He heads to Tarshish, about as far away from Nineveh as he can get. Knowing this geography reinforces the comic aspects (in a literary sense) of Jonah’s character.

They also have an intriguing blog post (with pictures!) that highlights the changing geography over time in the Bible.

Full disclosure: a Crossway staff member helped develop the site.

March 22, 2007 | Posted in: AAA - BLOG UPDATE,Bible News,Digital,News & Announcements | Author: Crossway Staff @ 8:03 am | (8) Comments »

8 Comments

  1. Really, but not in the usual “spiritual” talking point of view. Where on a map can you find places in the Bible? And if you can identify those places, where is can the effects of the Gospel be most felt in those areas?

    Ok, so the second part might be harder to answer than the first, but there is a point or two to start from. According to the ESV Blog, the folks at OpenBible.info have added geocodes to the places mentioned in the Bible…

    Trackback by Where Does Your Bible Map To? — March 22, 2007 @ 11:02 am

  2. The ESV Blog linked to OpenBible.info today, sending lots of traffic…

    Trackback by Incoming Links — March 22, 2007 @ 2:02 pm

  3. The folks at OpenBible.info have done a real service to the Christian community by tagging every identifiable location in the Bible for Google Earth…

    Trackback by Bible Geography Meets Google Earth — March 23, 2007 @ 7:34 am

  4. The folks at OpenBible.info have done a real service to the Christian community by tagging every identifiable location in the Bible for Google Earth…

    Trackback by OpenBible.info: Bible Geography Meets Google Earth — March 23, 2007 @ 11:02 am

  5. When we read our Bibles, it is so important to remember that these are real stories about real people in real places. They are not myths or legends. So when I learned this week on the ESV blog that a website called OpenBible.Info has “geocoded” the Bible, I was thrilled…

    Trackback by More Fun For Map Lovers — March 25, 2007 @ 7:33 am

  6. Google Earth (Bible): For those who are fans of Google Earth, you will enjoy this…

    Trackback by 03/26/07 Briefing — March 28, 2007 @ 7:34 am

  7. I had a much longer (and far more pithy) post prepared in light of the following, but Blogger just killed it. This will have to do for now: Wow! Go check this out: ESV Bible Blog.

    Trackback by ESV Bible Blog — March 31, 2007 @ 7:34 am

  8. Of course, ever the armchair adventurer, you can imagine my excitement when I discovered I could ‘geo-cahce’ Israel, all from the comfort of my chair, without ever breaking a sweat!…

    Trackback by Potpourii — April 2, 2007 @ 7:32 am

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