Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Jesus 'Tomb' Controversy Reopened

http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1704299,00.html?cnn=yes
by Tim McGirk

16 Jan 2008

When the Discovery Channel aired a TV documentary last year raising the possibility that archeologists had found the family tomb of Jesus Christ in the hills behind Jerusalem, it caused a huge backlash among Christians. The claim, after all, challenged one of the cornerstones of Christian faith — that Jesus, after his crucifixion, rose bodily to heaven in his physical form.

The Lost Tomb of Jesus, made by Hollywood director James Cameron and Canadian investigative journalist Simcha Jacobovici, was shown only once on Discovery. Britain's Channel 4 canceled its own plans to air the documentary, which reexamines an archeological find from 1980 in which a crypt was found containing what were said to be the ossuaries of Joseph, Mary, Jesus, the son of Joseph, Mariamne (possibly Mary Magdalene, say the filmmakers) and Judah, son of Jesus. Given the highly explosive nature of its conclusion and its slapdash sleuthing, it was no surprise that the film was panned by some academics and many Christian clerics.

Still, even after the furor over the film faded, the questions it raised about the tomb unearthed in 1980 continued to make waves among archeologists and Biblical scholars. A leading New Testament expert from Princeton Theological Seminary, Prof. James Charlesworth, was intrigued enough to organize a conference in Jerusalem this week, bringing together over 50 archeologists, statisticians and experts in DNA, ceramics and ancient languages, to give evidence as to whether or not the crypt of Christ had been found. Their task was complicated by the fact that since the tomb was opened in 1980, the bones of the various ossuaries had gone missing through a mishap of Israeli bureaucracy. Also gone were diagrams made by excavators that showed where each stone sarcophagus lay inside the tomb, and what the family relationships might have been, say, between Jesus and Mary Magdelene, who some speculate may have been his wife.

(read more)

Jesus' Tomb entries (Bock's Blog)
http://blog.bible.org/bock/taxonomy/term/65
http://blog.bible.org/bock/taxonomy/term/1

Hollywood Hype: The Oscars and Jesus' Family Tomb, What do they share? (Bock's Blog, 26 Feb 07)
http://blog.bible.org/bock/node/106

'My husband knew it was Jesus' tomb' (Jerusalem Post, 17 Jan 08)
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?c=JPArticle&cid=1200475897708&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

The View from Jerusalem - One more nail in the Ossuary (Stephen Pfann, 17 Jan 08)
http://www.uhl.ac/blog/?p=393
http://www.uhl.ac/blog/wp-content/uploads/tomb-conference-hand-out-1.pdf

What Kind of Resurrection? 3 blogs to examine the revival of the Jesus Tomb Discussion (Bock's Blog, 18 Jan 08)
http://blog.bible.org/bock/node/329

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