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The Cyrus Cylinder

Apr 11, 2014

When King Cyrus of Persia took the city of Babylon in 537 B.C., he wrote what is considered to be the first Declaration of Human Rights. Under this Declaration, the people of Judah and others were each allowed to return to their original countries. (The Babylonians had adopted the Assyrian policy of deporting people to other lands, where they had no deep roots and were less likely to fight for their land.)

This Declaration was recorded on a clay tablet known today as the Cyrus Cylinder (because of its shape). It was discovered in 1879 and is presently in the British Museum.


More recently, in 2010, artifacts were discovered in China that quoted from Cyrus’ Declaration, showing that a copy of this Declaration was sent to China at some point in history.

They are still verifying these artifacts, but the question is why this Human Rights Declaration would be so important to the Chinese back then.

“Contact between the Persians, Babylonians, and China at this time period is not surprising. Trade between China and Mesopotamia predates the fall of the Neo-Babylonian empire. During the Chinese Han Dynasty (206 BCE to 221 CE) there were political relations with the Parthian dynasty in Iran. The new archaeological find raises some interesting questions, including why was the text of the Cyrus Cylinder copied for the Chinese? Why would this declaration have been important to the Chinese?”


Does this show a prophetic connection between Cyrus and China? If Cyrus was the ancient “messiah” king from the east who overthrew Babylon, is China now one of the “kings from the east” prophesied in Revelation 16:12, who will overthrow Mystery Babylon?

The Cyrus Cylinder and its Declaration of Human Rights is the link. I believe that the Bible prophesies China and Russia to be the modern “kings from the east.” Isaiah 44 and 45 indicate that they will do God’s bidding and set us free from Babylon. They come not to enslave us, but to declare our human rights under God.

How ironic, considering the history of the past century!

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Blog Author: Dr. Stephen Jones