The House of Tzadok biblical priesthood referred to Qumran as Damesek or Damascus. Meanwhile, Paul traveled to Damascus for Jerusalem’s illegitimate authorities. He came to arrest many in Yeshua known as “The Way,” charging them for rebellion against Jerusalem’s authority. En route, he had an audio-visual experience to change his life and theology forever. Of course, it begs the question: what does “Damascus” have to do with the desert wilderness of Qumran on the northwest shores of the Dead Sea?
Consider that perhaps Damascus is a Hebrew language contraction of two terms: 1) doleh = he who draws out, 2) mashkeh = a water source to quench one’s spiritual thirst. When put together, the two words relate well to many texts about drawing out water to quench spiritual thirst in a dry and thirsty land. For example:
Isaiah 55:1-2. Ho! Everyone who thirsts, come to the waters...and let your soul delight itself in abundance.
Psalm 63:1. O God, you are my God. Early will I seek you. My soul thirsts for you; my flesh longs for you in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water.
Isaiah 12:3. Therefore, with joy you will draw water from the wells of The Salvation.
John 7:37-38. If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. He who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.
Now, from the scroll writers of the Damascus Document, we learn this:
(Damascus Document B – 4Q267, Fragment 2, Lines 7-15). God remembered the covenant with the fore[fath]ers, and raised [from Aa]ron men of knowledge and from Israel, wise men, and made them [li]sten. And they dug the well, a well about which Moses said: Numbers 21:18 «A well which the princes d[u]g, which the nobles [of the people] inquired with the staff». The well is the Law. [And those who dug it] are the repentant of I[srae]l, who lef[t] the land of J[uda]h and [lived in the dwell]ing/s/ of [Damascus;al]l of whom God [called] princes. For [they] all [sought him, and their renown has not been repudiated in anyone’s mouth. [And the spade is the interpreter] of the La[w …].
That said, on this program about the Dead Sea Scrolls – Episode 102 Part 6, we will walk the Way to Damascus of Qumran. We will challenge available evidence to understand the following better:
Acts 22:7-10 (Paul to Jerusalem’s religious authorities): …Arise and go into Damascus and there you will be told all things which are appointed for you to do.
Isaiah 40:3. (Isaiah speaking for YHVH): The voice of one crying (pause), IN THE WILDERNESS (desert), prepare the way of Yehovah; make Straight in the desert a highway for our God.
Acts 9:10-12 (YHVH speaking to Hananiah), Arise and go to the street called Straight.