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First archaeological evidence of Christianity from the time of Jesus


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This also reminded me of the following quote from wikipedia.

Dialogue with Trypho - Justin Martyr

"For I choose to follow not men or men's doctrines, but God and the doctrines [delivered] by Him. For if you have fallen in with some who are called Christians, but who do not admit this [truth], and venture to blaspheme the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob ; who say there is no resurrection of the dead, and that their souls, when they die, are taken to heaven; do not imagine that they are Christians."

Pasted from <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dialogue_with_Trypho>

For more info on Justin who lived from about 110 to 165 C.E. see the article below.

w92 3/15 p. 28 Justin—Philosopher, Apologist, and Martyr

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I was just reading this on another site. Here is the link:

http://cosmiclog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/02/27/10521007-new-find-revives-jesus-tomb-flap

Here is an excerpt from the article:

The team's excitement grew when they saw the inscription on the box sitting next to the one with the fish: A four-line inscription in Greek appeared to refer to a belief in the resurrection. The inscription could be read as "Divine Jehovah, raise up, raise up," or "The Divine Jehovah raises up to the Holy Place," or "Divine Jehovah, raise up [abbreviated name]."

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I was just reading this on another site. Here is the link:

http://cosmiclog.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/02/27/10521007-new-find-revives-jesus-tomb-flap

Here is an excerpt from the article:

The team's excitement grew when they saw the inscription on the box sitting next to the one with the fish: A four-line inscription in Greek appeared to refer to a belief in the resurrection. The inscription could be read as "Divine Jehovah, raise up, raise up," or "The Divine Jehovah raises up to the Holy Place," or "Divine Jehovah, raise up [abbreviated name]."

That is quite cool! A lot of our religious opponents like to argue that the 1st century Christians didn't use God's name, but this is another or nail in the coffin (or ossuary? :P ) for that idea. I wonder if this will be mentioned in our magazines at all.

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83888=4717-IAIO-Jehovah.png http://www.bibleinterp.com/PDFs/Tabor2.pdf Included within the Preliminary Report. Page 12,13,15 The Ossuaries and their Inscriptions 2. Ossuary 2:2=Kloner 2:1. This ossuary is highly decorated on its front side with deeply carved rosettes and frieze border. The sides and back of the ossuary are plain. It has an odd incised marking in the upper right corner of the decorated front: a stick-like “animal” figure with four legs, head, and tail, though we were not certain of that identification (Fig. 17). We also considered it might be a representation of the divine name, Yod, Heh, Vav, Heh (Yahweh) written in either stylized Hebrew or Greek: hwhy =PIPI.26 If such is the case it might shed light on the Greek inscription on ossuary 5:3, line 2, that we think has the divine name written in the Greek letters ΙΑΙΟ. If so we have something unique and highly irregular as there are no examples of Jewish inscriptions from this period in Jerusalem that write out the divine name Yahweh. 27 We have to assume that such a practice, particularly in a tomb, which was considered tum’a—that is, ritually unclean—is heterodox, reflecting a sectarian perspective (Numbers 19:16).28 Page 15 IAIO we take as a Greek representation or transliteration of the Tetragrammaton: h w h y(Yod, Heh, Vav, Heh)—that is Yahweh. It is unusual in that it has four letters rather than the common three-letter form IAO.32 Josephus says the divine name is represented by four “vowels.”33 It is possible that this writer intended it as a precise transliteration since the Hebrew name of God also has four letters.34 Accordingly, the inscription, though written in Greek letters, is purposely bilingual—first a Greek representation of God—the “Divine one,” followed by a Hebrew presentation—Yahweh—but represented in Greek letters.


It will be interesting to see how this all turns out. The pdf is of course downloadable. (right click link-save as)
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I can imagine that this will be debated for many years to come. It appears that the people behind the "patio tomb" discovery are going for sensationalism. I think I for one will keep an open mind however as not all outside archaeologist have negative views of the initial review. I can also understand that it would be easy to read into the evidence what one wants it to say.

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I am highly suspicious of the finds because they were found and are being interpreted by the same people who claimed to have 'found' the tombs of Jesus, his family, his wife Mary Magdalene and his son!!. It has the same pseudo-science flavour as the Da Vinci code book and other archeologists do no credit these men with much credibility other than their liking for sensationalist publicity.

Quotation from above article:"Tabor and Rami Arav, professor of archaeology at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, working together with Jacobovici"

Joe Zias, curator for anthropology at the Rockefeller Museum of Archaeology in Jerusalem 1972–97, had personally numbered and catalogued the East Talpiyot ossuaries in the 1980s. He had aided the earlier BBC team, but commented that:“Simcha Jacobovici has no credibility whatever. Projects like these make a mockery of the archaeological profession”.

Tabor and Simcha Jacobovici collaborated on films/documentaries to try to prove the earlier ossuaries were the actual family of Jesus despite onsite Isreali archeologists trying to write otherwise and later one ossuary was shown by a BBC documentary to be part of a big 'faking of antiquities' laboratory of Oded Golan's and the faked results were sold to museums around the world over a number of years and all those involved in that multimillion dollar fraud have gone to court and some have served jail time. Yet despite this, Simcha Jacobovici made another Discovery Channel documentary to weigh the balance of credibility in the light of his ill-informed assertion that the James Ossuary was absolutely genuine. The filmmakers still claim (as referred to by Osnat Goaz) including Jacobovici,Hollywood's James Cameron and Pellegrino that the East Talpiyot sepulchre was the actual family tomb of the biblical Jesus in the £3.5m documentary The Lost Tomb of Jesus and his book, The Jesus Family Tomb,In April 2006 the matter received a further airing, with rather more detail, in 'The Jesus Dynasty' by James Tabor.

How could this be Jesus' tomb this had bones, Jesus' was empty. Most of his family were of Nazareth not Jerusalem and he was not buried with them, but in another man's tomb. As for family and wife claims!!!!

The filmakers were allowed access to some of Isreal's ossuaries. One of the original archeologists at Talpiyot, Amos Kolner, told the Jerusalem Post that, under the prevailing circumstances, he felt the loan was “very foolish”. Osnat Goaz, a spokeswoman for the Israel Antiquities Authority, responded:We agreed to send the ossuaries, but it doesn’t mean that we agree with the filmmakers … This loan does not signal our authorization of the claims made in the documentary”.

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Quotation from above article:"This tomb's controversial ossuaries with their unusual cluster of names (that some have associated with Jesus and his family)"

It was the Tabor and Jacobovici making these assertions themselves a few years before.The Israeli-born, Canadian-based film maker Simcha Jacobovici is reigniting claims, first made over a decade ago, and long debunked, that a burial cave uncovered 27 years ago in Talpiot, Jerusalem, is the tomb of Jesus of Nazareth and his family.

Richard Bauckham, professor of New Testament Studies at St Andrews University in Scotland, has catalogued ossuary names from the Jerusalem region since 1980. In accordance with all archival record in Jerusalem, Bauckham’s catalogue identifies that these names were among those most commonly used at the time in question.

In effect, the Jacobovici film team had succeeded in proving absolutely nothing – especially since Yehoshua bar Yehosef inscriptions have been found at several other locations which also housed Miriam inscriptions. (Ossuaries citing the name of Yehoshua [Joshua/Jesus] are listed in the 1978 Manual of Palestinian Aramaic Texts and the 1994 Catalogue of Jewish Ossuaries.)

Regarding the numerous bone-boxes found in the Tombs at Dominus Flevit (situated on the upper western slope of the Mount of Olives), which contained "122 ossuaries of the usual type [square]," common names included Jeshua or Yeshua (Jesus) and Maria (Mary). (EAEHL, II, 636.) In one of the surviving family tombs in Jerusalem are 18 ossuaries with Greek inscriptions, one of which contains the names "Joseph" (twice) and "Maria." (EAEHL, II, 635.) By the typical media and religious standards this tomb should have also been exalted as that of Jesus's family. But this would not make for a great Canadian film maker's documentary.

David Mavorah, a curator of the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, also asserts that the names on the Talpiyot ossuaries were extremely popular and widely used in the 1st century.He states:“We know that Joseph, Jesus and Mariamene were all among the most common names of the period. To start with these names being together in a single tomb, and then leap from there to say ‘This is the tomb of the biblical Jesus’ is farfetched, to put it politely”.

If this was true of the previous ossuaries, then we should be very cautious about the interpretation of these latest finds.

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I am highly suspicious of the finds because they were found and are being interpreted by the same people who claimed to have 'found' the tombs of Jesus, his family, his wife Mary Magdalene and his son!!. It has the same pseudo-science flavour as the Da Vinci code book and other archeologists do no credit these men with much credibility other than their liking for sensationalist publicity.

I agree that Tabor's story is "highly suspicious" also. Certainly his "Jesus Tomb" story has not held up to scrutiny. As much as I would love to see Jehovah's name written in stone dating to that time period, the bottom line is, we live by faith not by sight.

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