Tag Archives: Bible

Biblical Archaeology’s Top 10 Discoveries of 2017 | News & Reporting | Christianity Today

Each year, on an almost daily basis, archaeological discoveries help us better understand the Bible and affirm its details about people, events, and culture.

Below are the top excavation findings reported in 2017 which have increased our knowledge of the biblical world and the early history of Christianity.

10) Pagan center discovered at Hippos/Sussita

A theater and bath house complex discovered at Hippos/Sussita, overlooking the Sea of Galilee, was part of a pagan cult site. As part of the Decapolis—the pagan Roman cities mentioned in the gospels—Hippos/Sussita was not a focus of Jesus’ ministry, but many of its people were likely a part of his audiences (Matthew 4:25). The existence of this cultic center was first suggested by the discovery of a mask of the Roman god Pan in 2015.

9) Byzantine church mosaics found

Mosaic inscriptions found in the remains of churches excavated at the site of Byzantine villages in the Galilee give new evidence for the spread of Christianity in the region after the religion’s formal adoption by the Byzantine Empire in A.D. 380. The mosaics date to the fourth and fifth centuries. One includes the mention of a woman who was a donor to the church construction—clear evidence for the prominent role of women in the history of the early church. Then just last week, the discovery of another was announced, drawing more attention to how Christianity spread.

8) Augustus temple altar at Caesarea

Recent excavations at Caesarea Maritima found the base of an altar that stood near the entrance of a temple dedicated to Augustus Caesar that was built by King Herod. The historian Josephus reported that the temple, built high to overlook the harbor, contained a gigantic statue of Augustus and a statue of Roma. Beneath the level of the altar, archaeologists found two large halls and the remains of a large staircase similar in construction to the architecture around the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. A church was later built on the site of the temple during the Byzantine period. (Archaeologists are re-excavating the entrance area to Caesarea as part of a large renovation to make it into a much larger attraction, including the restoration of its 2,000-year-old synagogue.)

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Source: Biblical Archaeology’s Top 10 Discoveries of 2017 | News & Reporting | Christianity Today


College course teaches students about ‘queering the Bible’ – The College Fix

Class ‘destabilizes long held assumptions’ about what’s in the Bible; university refuses to comment

Swarthmore College is offering a course next year that will survey “queer and trans* readings of biblical texts” by using “queer and trans* theoretical approaches,” with faculty staying silent on the specifics of the course material.

“Queering the Bible” is set to launch next fall and will be instructed by Gwynn Kessler, an associate professor of religion, according to Swarthmore’s course catalog.

The course, which is being offered through Swarthmore’s Religion Department, promises to “[introduce] students to the complexity of constructions of sex, gender, and identity in one of the most influential literary works produced in ancient times.”

Source: College course teaches students about ‘queering the Bible’ – The College Fix


Ancient forbidden Christian text of Jesus’ ‘secret teachings’ to his ‘brother’ found | Fox News

TRUTH BOMBS: Just like the investigation into the wife of Jesus turned out to be a gnostic fiction, we will wait to see if this is also more gnostic fairy tales.

Biblical scholars have discovered the first-known original Greek copy of an ancient forbidden Christian text that purportedly describes Jesus’ secret teachings to his “brother” James.

Source: Ancient forbidden Christian text of Jesus’ ‘secret teachings’ to his ‘brother’ found | Fox News


DNA Study of Mummies Indicates Ancient Egyptians Descended From Biblical Ham – Breaking Israel News | Latest News. Biblical Perspective.

“Of these were the isles of the nations divided in their lands, every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations.” Genesis 10:5 (The Israel Bible™)

In a scientific first, DNA taken from Egyptian mummies has been decoded, producing unexpected results about the true origins of the Egyptian people. These results confirm a controversial theory that traces the First Egyptian Dynasty back to Biblical Ham, as described in the Book of Genesis.

Scientists have long been baffled by the origins of the Egyptian people. Until now, there was no empirical data to clarify the issue. The study of Egypt’s population history could only draw on literary and indirect archaeological references, and inferences made from genetic studies of present-day Egyptians. Based on these sources, most researchers believed that ancient Egyptians came from nearby northern Africa. Egyptians today exhibit a significant sub-Saharan genetic influence.

This scientific belief long contradicted the Biblical account, which designates the forefather of Egypt as being Mizrayim, a son of Ham.

Of these were the isles of the nations divided in their lands, every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations. And the sons of Ham: Cush, and Mizraim, and Put, and Canaan. Genesis 10:5-6

According to the Bible, Mizrayim settled in Egypt whereas Cush settled in Africa, establishing two distinct and separate nations that did not share a common heritage. The scientific theory implies the origins of Africa and Egypt were the same.

A recent study of the DNA of mummies, led by Johannes Krause of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, has shed some light on the subject, and his findings support the Biblical narrative.

Previous attempts to study the DNA of mummified remains were inconclusive. The hot climate of Egypt combined with the embalming process practiced by ancient Egyptians destroyed most DNA. For this study, researchers sampled 151 mummies from Abusir el-Meleq, about 60 miles south of Cairo. Their samples spanned 1,300 years of ancient Egyptian history, from about 1388 BCE to 426 CE.

The researchers were able to collect 90 samples of mitochondrial DNA and three samples of genomes, the total of an organism’s DNA. The surprising results showed that ancient Egyptians were more closely related to populations from the Near East and southwest Asia, and not from northern Africa as previously thought.

“In the ancient Egyptians, we don’t find much at all sub-Saharan African ancestry,” Krause told CBC News. “They look very Near Eastern and have almost zero sub-Saharan African ancestry.” This, Krause said, illustrates that ancient Egyptians were more closely related to Europeans than they are to modern-day Egyptians. The study revealed that the African influence on Egyptians is relatively recent, entering into the gene pool after Roman times.

Read more at https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/90106/dna-study-mummies-indicates-ancient-egyptians-descended-biblical-ham/#fGpesVuEvflvxIEh.99

Source: DNA Study of Mummies Indicates Ancient Egyptians Descended From Biblical Ham – Breaking Israel News | Latest News. Biblical Perspective.


Israel: New Discovery Confirms King Hezekiah Really Did Destroy Idols – Christian News Headlines

TRUTH BOMBS: What you mean the Bible is historically accurate too!! WOW what a concept [sarcasm]

ARTICLE: A new archaeological discovery in Israel revealed that the biblical King Hezekiah really did destroy pagan idols, consistent with the Bible’s account.

Source: Israel: New Discovery Confirms King Hezekiah Really Did Destroy Idols – Christian News Headlines

Archaeologists discover secret tunnel in ruins of Hittite capital

TRUTH BOMBS: What? A discovery about an ancient people that we only knew about because of the Bible now reassured as being real through scientific discovery? Wow it is almost as if the Bible is a historically accurate document delivering true accounts. Wait that goes against the atheistic thinking of the modern pagan world [sarcasm]. When will we discover enough to simply trust the Word of God?

Archaeologists working on excavations in the capital of the former Hittite Empire in Alacahöyük, Turkey, have discovered a secret 2,300-year-old “potern” tunnel, Hurriyet Daily News reports.

“This tunnel is a big discovery in terms of Hittite architecture,” said Aykut Çınaroglu, the head of excavations. “I never thought I would find a potern, but I did.”

The secret tunnel stretches about 75 feet, but the archaeologists believe it is even longer. “We will see what we will find in the end. Poterns were placed under the castle, extending into the city. We have previously found a cuneiform tablet here, featuring a king who explains to priests what to do during ceremonies. This secret tunnel might have had a sacred function,” Çınaroglu said.

Archaeologists will focus on the tunnel during the upcoming season, and in doing so hope to learn more about the Bronze Age and Hatti era, which came 350 to 400 years before the Hittites. “We have so far excavated in very limited areas, but we will try to progress and reach this age with more scientific methods,” Çınaroglu said. Jeva Lange

Source: Archaeologists discover secret tunnel in ruins of Hittite capital

Archaeology Shows Accuracy of Scripture: Luke’s Account of Mob at Ephesus in Acts 19

TRUTH BOMBS: I recently did a full study on this topic of evidence for the accuracy of the scriptures. I will need to add this one.

ARTICLE: If you want an accurate picture of life in the first century AD, archaeology shows us that you can’t do much better than the book of Acts.Acts 19 starts with Paul leaving Apollos in charge of the church in Corinth while he continues his missionary journey. It ends with Paul’s encounter with an angry mob.And, as a recent article in Biblical Archaeological Review tells us, it’s a very reliable depiction of life in the Roman world.Upon his arrival in Ephesus, Paul meets some believers whose instruction was incomplete. He teaches them about the Holy Spirit and baptizes them in the name of the Lord Jesus. But then things get interesting.Paul’s message offends both the Jewish and Gentile establishments in what was either the second or third largest city in the Roman Empire. The response of some people in the synagogue was the usual: obstinacy, disbelief, and disparagement.But for the Gentiles, the problem was literally closer to home: their pocketbooks. What Acts calls “a serious disturbance” broke out when a silversmith named Demetrius told his fellow silversmiths that Paul’s monotheism was bad for business.To understand why, it helps to understand what made Ephesus famous: a shrine to Artemis, also known as “Diana,” the goddess associated with, among other things, childbirth, children, virginity and the hunt.Actually calling the temple to Artemis in Ephesus a “shrine” is a gross understatement. The temple was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. At 425 feet long by 200 feet wide, it was four times the size of the Parthenon. The structure was held by 127 columns that were 60 feet tall and 7 feet in diameter.That meant anything—including Paul and his gospel of the risen Jesus—calling into question the cult of Artemis not only threatened their livelihood, it also threatened Ephesus’s stature within the Empire.So the good people of Ephesus rioted, yelling “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians.”As the article shows, the account of Paul’s adventures in Ephesus is filled with details that demonstrate intimate knowledge about Ephesus and its way of life. For instance, the reference to silversmiths. In 1984, a monument was discovered that corroborated Luke’s account of their prominence in Ephesus. The inscription stated that the monument had been paid for by the silversmiths and called their city the “greatest metropolis of Asia, [and] the thrice-honored temple guardian of the venerable Ephesians.”In others words, theirs was a status quo worth rioting to preserve. Note that both the inscription and Acts 19 uses the same Greek word, neokoros, “guardian,” in describing Ephesus’s relationship to the temple cult.Then there’s the seemingly-obscure reference to “the great Artemis and of her image that fell from the sky.” As Biblical Archaeological Review tells readers, “The origin of Ephesian Artemis is traditionally associated with a meteorite that was worshiped in early Ephesus.”As the article concludes, “Luke knew what he was talking about in recording the riot in the theater. His claim at the outset of the two-part work (Luke and Acts) to have ‘investigated everything accurately and reported them orderly’ is substantiated in Acts 19.”As the brilliant comic actor Kenneth Mars said in Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein, “A riot is an ugly thing.” But a riot that substantiates the historicity of the Acts of the Apostles? Well, that’s a beautiful thing.

Source: Archaeology Shows Accuracy of Scripture: Luke’s Account of Mob at Ephesus in Acts 19