Adullam (Micah 1)

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Illustration: From the Biblical city of Adullam

Located 26 km southwest of Jerusalem, Adullam was one of several strategic cities in the Shephelah to be object of grim prophecies from Micah. As Adullam had been a place of refuge during the time of David’s distress, so now the city would host the strong and the wealthy who were fleeing before the Assyrian army.

Adullam is mentioned early in Scripture in connection with Judah and Tamar (Genesis 38), as well as with Joshua’s conquest (Joshua 12:15), but it is most prominent as the place where David sought safety – a “no man’s land” between Israelite and Philistine territory (1 Samuel 22). While he was there, David was joined by family members and other refugees, until he had become the leader of a 400-man force. The superscripts of Psalms 34, 57 and 142 may indicate that David wrote these psalms while resting at the cave of Adullam.

Numerous caves mark the prominent hill of Adullam today, but the site has not yet been excavated. David’s grandson Rehoboam fortified Adullam as part of his strategy of protecting Judah’s western flank (2 Chronicles 11:7), but the site may have been destroyed in the invasion of Sennacherib that was anticipated by Micah. Following the Babylonian exile, however, Adullam was reinhabited (Nehemiah 11:30).


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