Backgrounders on the Bible through Biblical Archaeology

935-939 Randall Smith and Biblical Context

The first program in this series I’ve entitled, O.J. Simpson and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Even though he now pastors a church in the U.S., Randy Smith is one of the best people around at doing what I try to do with THE BOOK & THE SPADE, putting the Bible in its historical context. That’s because he lived in Israel for several decades.

I first met him at Bethsaida, a dig along the north shore of the Sea of Galilee, in 1999. Our group was getting ready to leave the parking lot and Randy’s group pulled up in their buses. Tom, our guide, introduced me and while we were chatting Randy showed me the thick tour book he put together for his group. That’s the kind of reference book I want to offer our tour participants.

We didn’t get Randy to guide out 2001 tour but we did work with Joan Meyer Keane, his highly capable travel coordinator. She helped us pull off our best tour yet, and even arranged a lecture with Randy in the historic library of the Jerusalem YMCA (on King David Street, across from the King David Hotel. There is another YMCA in East Jerusalem, which we have also utilized in the past.)

In program #935, the first in this series of rebroadcasts, he talks about the history of the YMCA library. He also explains the connection between O.J. Simpson and the Dead Sea Scrolls. (Note: when I originally posted this program I had misnumbered it 937, that’s now corrected.)

Program #936, a new perspective on Nazareth, the Greek Carwash concept explained and information on the Sea of Galilee.

Program #937 covers the archaeology of the house of Peter’s mother-in-law in Capernaum, as well as some insights into the apostle Paul.

Program #938 includes a discussion of the first century Church of the Apostles and the archaeology of the Garden Tomb.

Program #939 discusses Pentecost and the Upper Room.

We are rebroadcasting this series now because we want everyone to know that our 2008 25th Anniversary Book & the Spade Holyland Study Tour will also feature a lecture by Dr. Smith, on the night of our arrival in Tel Aviv. The details of this tour are coming together and should be finalized any day now.

Meanwhile, I’m checking to see if the four-DVD set of teaching programs by Dr. Smith on video is still available. We offered the video series when we originally broadcast these programs in 2004 and they were quite popular. As you can tell by listening to this series of BOOK & THE SPADE programs, his lectures are very informative.

If you want to hear him in person, and see the sites we’ve been discussing on THE BOOK & THE SPADE, I invite you to join us on our tour next February. Send me an email and let me know.

P.S. – I’ve just learned something interesting about one of the sites on our itinerary for our tour. At Hippos/Sussita, a decapolis city overlooking the Sea of Galilee, archaeologists this summer discovered the preserved imprint of a sandal of a Roman legion soldier.

Another exciting discovery. Archaeologists working in the area of the Pool of Siloam have found a drainage channel used by Jews to escape from the Romans when Jerusalem was conquered at the end of the first Jewish revolt.

Another bonus: A video crew went on site to several of this summer’s archaeological digs and asked archaeologists: “Is the Bible relevant to archaeology?” (Thanks to Todd Bolen.)


2 responses

  1. Gordon, midway through this series, I just want to tell you I’m thoroughly enjoying each show! This guy really knows his stuff! I’m captivated! It’s unfortunate that I can’t make the trip with you next year, but I sure would enjoy it–maybe some day…

    September 2, 2007 at 6:33 pm

  2. I agree completely, and am glad we can highlight this series of interviews once again.You may have missed it on THE BOOK & THE SPADE website,,we have a series of four videos available that were produced by Dr. Smith. I recommend them highly.

    September 2, 2007 at 7:58 pm

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