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Cana where Jesus turned water to wine

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    Posted: 29-Mar-2019 at 00:53

Cana is the site where Jesus turned water into wine in John 2 in the bible. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cana .
Its location has been hitherto uncertain, with "5" candidate sites. We had a look and it is looking like our new candidate is seemingly likely.

This is our list of considered candidates (likely and unlikely), including the 5 orthodox/traditional ones:

Kanah/Qana al-Jalil (s.e. of Tyre, Lebanon) *
Baskama (Golan)
Kenath-nobah (Golan)
Capar Ganaeoi (north Galilee, northwest of lake Huleh) *
Gamala/Gamla/Jamla "camel" (Salam/Sanam "hump", Golan)? *
Gennesaret (near Capernaum)?
En-gannim (n Samaria / s Galilee)
Kafr/Kfar/Kefar Henna/Kanna/Kenna (east of Sepphoris) *
Khirbet Qana/Kana-el-Jalil (ruins, above Beit Netofa valley betw Sepphoris & Tiberias on sea Galilee, 8 mi north from Nazareth via Reineh) *
Hannathon
kefar Hana(n)yah?
Qunaytirah (Golan)
Qan'abah (Golan)
Ain Quana/Qana (spring, 1 mile north of Nazareth)
al-Jamlah/Gamle (Tell ed-Dra' east of lake Tiberias)
Beit Jann (upper Galilee)
Janoah (east of Tyre)
Beth-san (ne Samaria / se Galilee)
Zaanannim (to the north of Galilee, west of Huleh)

Our new candidate for Cana is Gamla, which is mentioned in Josephus as the site of a battle between Jewish rebels and the Romans. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gamla .

Here are the details of our noticed possible matches between Cana and Gamla/Gamala:

Name match:
The name Kana/Cana (tes Galilaias "of Galilee") could match the name Gmla/Gamla/Gamala/Camel/Jamla/Sanam.
Both have four letters in the Greek Cana and the Hebrew Gmla; both have in common c-a-n-a and g-a-m/l-a or s-a-n-a. The "Galilee" also is similar to Gamla (both g-a-l). The "Karm" in the analogous namesake site Karm er-Rasm near Kfar Kanna in Lower Galilee is also similar to Gamla (karm/gaml, with k/g & r/l interchanges)?
The C- could match the G/C/S-. (Note: Gamla means "camel" and is cognate with that word. Cana and Camel both begin with C-.) Another place elsewhere in Upper Galilee named Capar Ganaeoi may bridge the gap?
There is a known l & m interchange, and/or l & n interchange in some Middle Eastern languages such as Egyptian.
The 2nd/last -a is similarily different to the 1st -a- in both the Greek Cana and the Hebrew Gamla (written "with an aleph at the end"). (Alpha and Omega? Jesus "1st" miracle?)
Josephus said that the people of Gamla pronounced name different. (Gamla is Aramaic. "the inscriptions on coins were made by craftsmen with low qualification, synthesizing Paleo-Hebrew and Aramaic letters".)
John might have punned/conflated/disguised names, especially considering the Zealots connection (see below). "In his Gospel, the author makes no claim to have been at the wedding. Many would regard the story of the wedding at Cana as of theological rather than historical or topographical significance.... The consensus of modern scholarship is that the 4th Gospel was addressed to a group of Jewish Christians.... There is a minority view that the gospel was written ... specifically for a gentile audience, who would not know the topography of the Holy Land. On this hypothesis the name "Cana" might have some purely symbolic significance."
The other namesake sites in Lower Galilee might be later namesakes ("it was a common practice for new and more affluent and easily accessible sites to be established in place of old ones").
Gamla is also associated with Alexander Jannaeus, whose 2nd name is also similar to Cana?
Some of the other candidates may not have a definite name match as indicated by it being said that "Ain Qana is considered by some to be a better candidate based on etymological grounds."

Meaning match:
Cana's name is thought to mean either "reeds", or "low", or qanna('i) "Zealot", or qen "nest", or qano "envy".
The Zealots meaning would fit well with Gamla which was a centre of Jewish rebels/zealots in Josephus' 'Wars'.

Galilee match:
Some critics might argue that Gamla was in Gaulonitis not Galilee. However, in Josephus we find Judas the Galilean and Judas the Gaulonite refer to the same person, which a footnote highlights with a wondering why. Galilee and Gaulonitis/Golan are also similar names.
Josephus mentions in a same sentence the "region of Gamla" and Gaulonitis as 2 distinct/separate places/names.
The Zealots were called Galileans, and Judas the Galilean/Gaulonite was from Gamla in Josephus, and Gamla was later a famous site of a battle between the rebels and Romans.
The analogous namesake sites in Lower Galilee are maybe analogous to Gamla in Lower Gaulonitis?
"Josephus said in The War of the Jews that Jannaeus conquered Gamla during the war in Galilee" "Josephus, Commander of Galilee during the Jewish Revolt against Rome, in 66 ad/ce fortified Gamla as his main stronghold on the Golan." "It was one of only five cities in the Galilee and Golan who stood against Vespasian's legions...." "Gamla became a refuge city, in which both insurgents from all over the Galilee and residents of the surrounding villages flocked." "The Gamla coin, found in Alexandrium, testifies to contacts with the rebels in Galilee."
Gamla is on east side of lake Galilee, "overlooking" lake Galilee.
We have also already said how Galilee in 'Cana of Galilee' maybe also resembles the name Gamla too.
Galilee means "Circle (of the Gentiles)"....

Location match:
Jesus went from Jordan to Galilee/Cana to Capernaum to Jerusalem in John 1 & 2, and went from Samaria to Cana (near Capernaum) to Jerusalem in John 4 & 5. For the traditional/orthodox candidates in Lower Galilee it has been said that "Capernaum is a big detour in traveling from Cana to Jerusalem". The Jews travelling between Judea and Galilee used to avoid Samaria by going around about route through Peraea and Decapolis (Trans-Jordan). This scenario might match Gamla which is on the east side of lake Galilee?
Cana was only a day or so journey from Capernaum in John 2 & 4. Gamla is about that far from Capernaum.
Cana seems to be near Bethsaida in John 1:44-45. It is supposed that there were 2 Bethsaida's close to each other in the north coast of Lake Galilee. Gamla is not very far from Bethsaida-Iulias.
There is a Cana on the road from Iulias in Josephus. Iulias could be Bethsaida-Iulias on the north coast of lake Galilee, or Livias-Iulias in Peraea, either of which could fit with Gamla on the east side of lake Galilee.
(The other Cana a day's walk from Tiberias in Josephus could match the Kafr Kanna or Khirbet Qana in Lower Galilee.)

Down match:
John says they went "down" from Cana to Capernaum. This may fit Gamla in Golan Heights better than the candidate sites in Lower Galilee.
The analogous namesake Khirbet Qana in Lower Galilee "is located on a limestone outcropping that rises 330 feet (100 m) above the floor of the Bet Netofa Valley".
Gamla "was built on a steep hill shaped like a camel's hump...."

Spring match:
"Some early Christian pilgrim reports mention a spring in association with the Cana of Galilee". The analogous namesake Ain Qana in Lower Galilee has a spring.
Gamla had a spring according to Josephus.
John mentions drawing of water at Cana.
Gamla had a water cistern, a spring, a waterfall.
(The early settlement at Gamla "was probably agricultural" which would also require water.)

Purification match:
In John it mentions the water pots in connection with purification. The analogous namesake Khirbet Qana in Lower Galilee had mikveh-pools which are used for Jewish ceremonial bathing. Gamla also had mikvehs and/or ritual baths.

Above a valley match:
The analogous namesake Khirbet Qana overlooks the Beit Netofa valley.
Gamla "was situated on a hill between the valleys of the creeks Gamla and Daliot. It was built on a small saddle of the basalt ridge and was surrounded by deep gorges...." "the steep ravines".

Ruins match?
The name of the analogous namesake site Khirbet Qana in Lower Galilee means "ruins of Qana", and this is maybe analogus to Gamla which has been ruins since the battle there mentioned in Josephus?

Synagogue match?
The analogous namesake site Khirbet Qana in Lower Galilee had "a structure which bears similarities to Roman-period synagogues". The marriage in John 2 might have been in a synagogue? Gamla has an early synagogue.

Brook match?
There is a brook Kanah/Cana in the Old Testament.
Gamla "was situated on a hill between the valleys of the creeks Gamla and Daliot". (Although the OT Kanah seemingly may not be the same site there might be an analogous namesake connection?)
"According to the Mishnah, the town of Gamla was encompassed by a wall before the Israelite conquest of Canaan under Joshua." (Note also similarity of Gamla of Mishna, Kanah/Cana of Joshua, and Cana of John associated with similar namesakes Joshua and Jesus.)

Date match:
The other sites have only been tradtionally associated with Cana since later times: Khirbet Qana "long" "from a very early time/period" or Byzantine & Medieval periods (517-527, 1101-1103, 1155, 1283, 1321), Ain Qana "early Christian pilgrim reports", Qana 4th cent, Kafr Kanna 8th cent or Mamluk period or mid-17th cent, Khirbet Qana 12th cent or earlier, Karm er-Rasm Byzantine period or modern times.

Josephus match?
Yardenna Alexandre "believes the site is precisely identified by Josephus". Josephus "mentions more than one place named Cana, in the context of Galilee there are 2 mentions in his Life". One of the Canas in Josephus is a place on the road from Iulias. Gamla is also mentioned in Josephus. "Josephus, Commander of Galilee during the Jewish Revolt against Rome, in 66 ad/ce fortified Gamla as his main stronghold...."

Near Nazareth:
The traditional orthodox "Nazareth" and "Cana" candidate sites in Lower Galilee are supposed to support each other being near each other. "There has been much speculation about where Cana might have been", though. Both sites are maybe too near the Herodian/Roman Sepphoris. Some scholars poiint out problems of Jesus' Nazareth matching the traditional/orthodox site, such as the traditional/orthodox Nazareth wasn't a city in Jesus' times, didn't have a synagogue, etc. The real Nazareth might possibly really be Nabratein in Upper Galilee ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nabratein_synagogue , http://historum.com/blogs/gold+heart/31691-nazareth-nabratein.html ), and Cana certainly seems to match Gamla in Lower Gaulonitis / Golan Heights.

Cana References: Bible (Joshua, John); Adrian Room / Brewer's dictionary of names; Wikipedia.
Gamla References: Josephus; Wikipedia.
Other candidate Cana sites references: Wikipedia; Clark 'Bible Archaeology Illustrated/Digest'; Oxford bible concordance/dictionary.



Edited by Arthur-Robin - 29-Mar-2019 at 03:56
NZ's mandatory fluoridation is not fair because it only forces it on the disadvantaged/some and not on the advantaged/everyone.
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