Examination of Jesus’ Burial Site at Golgotha

We see in the Bible that the place where Jesus was crucified was called:

  • Golgotha in the language of the Hebrews
  • Kranion in Greek
  • Calvarius (where “Calvary” is derived) in Latin

All of these words mean skull or place of the skull. One belief suggests that it could be called “skull” because of what scripture tells us. 1 Samuel 17:54 says, “Then David took the Philistine’s (Goliath’s) head and brought it to Jerusalem, but he put his weapons in his tent.”

Why would David take the head 18 miles into Jerusalem? Could it be that they named this Jerusalem site “skull” because it was where the head of Goliath was buried? Some speculate that David cutting off Goliath’s head could be symbolic of Jesus crushing the head of the enemy (Gen 3:15) by his Resurrection. Wouldn’t that be profound if Goliath’s head was buried where Jesus claimed ultimate victory over Satan? A great victory foreshadowing the ultimate victory!

Also thought-provoking is the prophetic relationship between David and Jesus. Luke 1:32 says of Jesus, “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David (Luke 1:32 NIV). Lastly, remember the Hebrew name for this site. Although this is highly speculative, Golgotha sounds an awful lot like Goliath. Could this be the true reason the site is called “skull”? It’s possible.

See where Bob Cornuke recently suggested the site of Golgotha could be on one of our upcoming Israel tours.