Backgrounders on the Bible through Biblical Archaeology

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1560-1561 Randall Price – Qumran Cave #12

qumrancave4

Qumran Cave #4

For more than 60 years, the story of the Dead Sea Scrolls discovery has included mention of the 11 caves in which scrolls and scroll materials were found. Then, earlier this year, it was announced that Cave #12 has been identified. A new effort to identify caves with archaeological contents along the shore of the Dead Sea has begun.

On this program we talk with professor Randall Price, one of the leaders of this year’s Cave #12 excavation for more details on the cave search and what’s ahead.

1558-1559 John DeLancey – Qumran Cave #12 & 2017 Excavation Plans

John DeLancey

John DeLancey

The 11 caves in which Dead Sea Scroll materials were found more than a half century ago have been joined by one more cave, cave #12. No new scrolls were found, but archaeologists did unearth evidence of scroll storage jars and related materials left behind by looters who plundered the site decades ago. We discuss this find and several other sites where archaeology is going on this year with John DeLancey, who will be the co-leader of our May 2018 TB&TS Israel Study tour.

In the second program we continue to review some of the most interesting sites in Israel where excavations are planned for 2017. This is an annual feature which gives listeners an idea of where Biblical Archaeology is focused right now, and it also serves to remind listeners that these are all opportunities where volunteers can get involved and do some hands-on biblical research. As William Dever once said, on The Book & The Spade program, “The only new facts about the Bible and the biblical world are coming from the ground.”

1555-1557 Craig Evans – Jesus & the Remains of His Day

Icon of Jesus from the church at Tabgha, along the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee.

Icon of Jesus from the church at Tabgha, along the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee.

Biblical Archaeology covers thousands of years of Old Testament history. It also includes three years of the public ministry of Jesus of Nazareth. Professor Craig Evans of Houston Baptist University has a new book, Jesus and the Remains of His Day, that focuses on some of the most important archaeological discoveries that tell us about Jesus, his ministry, and the world he lived in.

Jesus’ ministry was centered around the Sea of Galilee and today cities along the seashore are being excavated, including Magdala, the home of Mary Magdalene. But there’s a lot more, and we discuss these discoveries in these three programs.

UPDATE: This week’s Biblical Archaeology news is about the 12th cave discovery near Qumran. Up to now there’s only been 11 caves in which Dead Sea Scroll materials were found. Archaeologists have now identified one more. This week’s guest, Craig Evans, has an article on the Logos Academic blog, and also an article on the Fox News Opinion website. There’s always something new happening in Biblical Archaeology.

1554 Brent Seales – The Library at Herculaneum

prof. Brent Seales

prof. Brent Seales

We check in again with Brent Seales, chair of the computer science department at the University of Kentucky, for an update on his efforts to read ancient scrolls which are unreadable without a X-ray scan and his software to virtually unroll the scrolls. Professor Seales first got our attention a year and a half ago with the news that he had virtually unrolled a carbonized scroll of Leviticus, excavated in 1970 from a burned synagogue on the Dead Sea shore at Engedi.

At the time he took up the Leviticus scroll professor Seales had been at somewhat of a dead end on his efforts to read scrolls from the Villa of the Papyri, excavated a century and a half ago from Herculaneum. The ink on the scrolls was indistinguishable from the burned black papyri. But now professor Seales believes he’s found the solution to that problem, and it may well be that this ancient library, destroyed by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in A.D. 79, is once again going to be available to interested readers.

1553 Clyde Billington – Top Ten Biblical Archaeology stories of 2016

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem

Every year we draw attention to all of the interesting excavations in Biblical Archaeology by highlighting ten of the most exciting discoveries or announcements of the previous year. This year the top discovery on the list goes right to the heart of the Christian faith, the opening up of the traditional tomb of Jesus in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. There are nine more on the list, one all the way at the other end of the Roman Empire.

You can tune in or download and listen, or you can check the written version that was published by Christianity Today magazine.

1296-1298 again, with Thomas Oden

3933Five years ago we interviewed theologian Thomas Oden about his new InterVarsity Press book, The African Memory of Mark. It was an intriguing new perspective on the author of the shortest Gospel.

Thomas Oden died December 8, 2016. He was 85. We are rebroadcasting these programs in his memory.

Oden has an interesting story about his theological journey, as reported in Christianity Today and other publications. Terry Mattingly also had a column on Thomas Oden.

 

1552 Clyde Billington – Lachish Gate Shrine & New IAA Archaeology Campus

Excavating the toilet at the Lachish Gate Shrine.

Excavating the toilet at the Lachish Gate Shrine.

A second look at some of the top archaeology stories from the Autumn 2016 issue of ARTIFAX magazine with co-editor Clyde Billington.

On this program we discuss the recently renewed excavations at Lachish and the discovery of a gate shrine which appears to have been permanently desecrated by the installation of a toilet.

We also discuss the Israel Antiquities Authority’s new archaeology campus in Jerusalem, as well as the reopening of the restored Mamertine Prison in Rome, where Peter and Paul may have been held.