Daily Archives: 13 Mar 2012

And Now For Something Completely Different…

Our daughter, as you may know, is a fantastic artist.  Her medium is yarn and her knitting is spectacular.  She’s just finished a very pretty piece that she’s interested in selling and I told her I’d be proud to mention it.  Here it is

and here’s where it can be gotten

Cargill’s Analysis Bears Fruit, Or Fosters Embarrassment, Or Most Likely, Both

Tom Verenna informs me that Tabor and Simcha have removed all incriminating photos from their website following the posting of Cargill’s evisceration.  This is quite telling, isn’t it.  Robert himself notes, on the post,

[UPDATE: Since I published this article on Mar 13, 2012 at 11:49am Central Daylight Time, the thejesusdiscovery.org website has removed the doctored image below. To fix the missing image, I have replaced it here with the copy of the image I downloaded form the publicly accessible “Press Kit Photos and Graphics” section. However, I have left the original URL of the removed image in the caption for reference. ]

Has the equivocation by the purveyors of the ‘Jesus Discovery’ begun? Yup. Now, the photos have ‘disappeared’. How strange…

Unfortunate News from the British Museum

Via Jack Sasson

From Jonathan Tubb – JTUBB@thebritishmuseum.ac.uk

I should be most grateful if you could post the following: The British Museum regrets that because of a major redevelopment programme ( the building of The World Conservation and Exhibition Centre), it will again be necessary to close the Middle East Department Students’ Room (the Arched Room) for the period 1st May 2012 – 30th September 2012. During this time it will not be possible to study any material from exhibition or in the study collection.

If you were planning on doing some research at the BM, you might want to adjust your calendar.

Oh Come on Palestinians, You Can’t Claim a Hebrew Coin from the First Century as Part of Your Cultural Heritage!

What absurdity.  I wish the Palestinians would stop this kind of thing- they aren’t helping their cause at all.

Palestinian Media Watch
PMW Bulletins
Mar. 7, 2012

PA historical revision: Judean Shekel coin from 66 CE is “ancient Palestinian coin” and part of the “Palestinian cultural tradition”, by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik

A Judean Shekel coin from the year 66 CE, the first year of the Jewish rebellion against Rome, was sold for $1.1 million this past week at an auction in New York. The words in Hebrew “Shekel of Israel [Year] 1” are printed on the front of the coin, and “Jerusalem the holy” appears on the back. [New York Post, March 10, 2012]. The official Palestinian Authority daily in writing about the auction described the Hebrew coin from the Second Temple period as an “ancient Palestinian coin” and as being part of the “Palestinian cultural tradition.” The coin, with the ancient Hebrew lettering, can be seen to the right.

Here are photos of the coin-

Shame on ya, Palestinians. You can’t claim that coin any more than a Canadian could claim a Quarter. (Via Joseph Lauer).

Where in the World is Chris Tilling Now?

He’s gone and done it:  he’s jumped off a bridge

We’re going to go ahead and call this the worst way to get out of a ticket. A New Orleans-area man jumped off the Causeway Bridge over Lake Pontchartrain Sunday after being pulled over by police and asked to take a sobriety test, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports. Police stopped Chris ‘the dreadful heretic’ Tilling  Thomas Robert Harter, 44, halfway across the bridge about 5:40pm, after another motorist reported his car swerving and speeding.

Harter  Tilling got out of the car without being asked, waving his arms in the air. Police say he was swaying and smelled of alcohol, so they asked him to perform a field sobriety test. He agreed, but then “bolted” and leapt into the water 20 feet below.

Drinking is bad for you, Chris.  What if there hadn’t been any water in the river???

More Stupid Atheist Tricks

Are angry atheists really so stupid that they don’t even grasp the tiniest notion of sense and sensibility?  Are they so bereft of any brains at all that they can’t distinguish between theological truth and historical setting?  Are they really that incapable of understanding nuance, message, and intention?  Or are they just blatantly moronic intentionally?

Actually it’s all of the above.  Here’s their latest stupid atheist trick-

The feckless imbeciles need to visit the Rudolf Bultmann school of exegesis for a few years and then they might gain some bit or semblance of understanding.

Alas, however, they’re too dumb to even realize that they don’t know what they’re talking about.  And that’s dumb.  A person or group of people has to try very, very hard to be that stupid.  Congrats, angry atheists, you’ve succeeded in being the stupidest of them all.

Have You a Reaction to the Verdict in the ‘Trial of the Century’?

Matthew Kalman, a journalist based in Jerusalem who has covered the trial since the very beginning writes

As well as the Channel 4 News story broadcast last night, I am preparing to write a story for publication after hearng the verdict on Wednesday. If any of your list folk would like to send me their comments or post them in your forum once the verdict is in (or send them now, anticipating it one way or the other) it would be helpful to be able to quote some of them in my story.

My direct email is  matthewkalman@google.com


Matthew Kalman- Jerusalem Correspondent http://matthewkalman.blogspot.com/

If you have thoughts about the trial in general or the verdict once it’s rendered in particular, contact him directly. I’ve told him that some of you (fringe nutters that you are- liking as you do to write your names in Hebrew even though you aren’t Jewish and others going by the name of Jordan) will make the most ridiculous comments so he’s been fairly warned.

Robert Cargill Exposes Digital Manipulation and Sins of Commission and Omission in the Case of the ‘Jesus Discovery’

Robert has a massive, masterfully written, majestically illustrated, carefully documented post in which he exposes the digital manipulation that has been done to images of the so called ‘Jonah Ossuary’ in the much discussed ‘Jesus Discovery’ story.

Excerpting it is impossible.  You’ll simply have to go to his blog and read it in its fullness.  It should, and I say should because we all know it won’t, but it should put to rest the claims that have been made by Tabor et al.

And lest you doubt that Robert is the most appropriate person to examine digital evidence I would simply remind you that he is probably (no, he is most certainly) the leading expert in the field of digital materials and biblical scholarship.  If he says something isn’t right with an image, you can take it to the bank.

A blistering and withering look at the Republicans and their foolishness when it comes to Sarah Palin.

Heinrich Bullinger Calls Joel Watts a Pelagian Blasphemous Prater

Apparently Bullinger wanted to chime in on Joel’s outrageous defense of Erasmus, writing

… the arrogant disputations of some blasphemous praters concerning free-will, as though it were in our power of ourselves to do any heavenly thing, we do utterly reject and flatly deny. And yet we do not make man subject to fatal necessity, nor turn upon God the blame of iniquity, as we have elsewhere more at large declared. And St Augustine in his controversy with the Pelagians did so attemper his disputation, that he attributed the good to the grace of God, and the evil unto our nature: so that, the sense being sound, uncorrupted, and well weighed, he attributeth free-will, which he granteth to be in us, unto the grace that worketh in us, yea, to the regeneration of the Spirit, rather than to ourselves or our own power.

Personally I don’t think Joel is a blasphemous prater. But then again I don’t have the benefit of being in the Presence of God, where Joel’s ideas are regularly discussed; whereas Bullinger does.  I sure hope this doesn’t mean Joel is out…

John Calvin Responds to Joel Watts

Joel seems to be siding with Erasmus in the matter of free will against Luther.  Because Calvin had more than a little to say on the subject, let’s let him:

Let it stand, therefore, as an indubitable truth, which no engines can shake, that the mind of man is so entirely alienated from the righteousness of God that he cannot conceive, desire, or design any thing but what is wicked, distorted, foul, impure, and iniquitous; that his heart is so thoroughly envenomed by sin that it can breathe out nothing but corruption and rottenness; that if some men occasionally make a show of goodness, their mind is ever interwoven with hypocrisy and deceit, their soul inwardly bound with the fetters of wickedness.

So much, then, for man’s ability to ‘be good’ absent grace.  Luther’s argument, dismissed seemingly easily by Joel, is much more complex and nuanced than readers of Joel’s post might be led to believe.  I commend to you the entire book- ‘On the Bondage of the Will‘.  A fair reading is very instructive, and persuasive.

And while Calvin and Luther and Zwingli disagreed on a number of issues, they were all in complete agreement on this one- against Erasmus and the Humanists.


stained glass window in Ravensburg, Germany

Christians Must Leave North Sudan, Or Suffer the Consequences

AllAfrica.com reports

Sudanese Christians who have barely a month to leave the north or risk being treated as foreigners are starting to move, but Christian leaders are concerned that the 8 April deadline set by Islamic-majority Sudan is unrealistic.  “We are very concerned. Moving is not easy … people have children in school. They have homes … It is almost impossible,” Roman Catholic Bishop Daniel Adwok, the Khartoum archdiocese auxiliary told ENInews in a telephone interview on 7 March.

Sudan in February announced the deadline for the former citizens it had stripped of nationality after South Sudan’s January 2011 vote to secede. The ultimatum will affect an estimated 500,000-700,000 people, who are mainly Christians of southern origin that still live in the north.

Islam isn’t very hospitable is it.  Via Stuart James on the twitter thing.

Luther: On the Proper Method of Teaching

In teaching one must proceed with simplicity, plainness, and clarity, even showing what one teaches, and not giving or showing one thing while teaching or referring to something else. It is not good teaching to show you white while teaching you about black, or to show you the devil while teaching you about God. Clowns and deceivers or scoffers and jesters do so either to mislead or to ridicule. A devout man who is in earnest does not do so.  —  Martin Luther

Yuval Goren on the Press Coverage of the ‘Trial of the Century’

Prof. Goren writes, in response to the Channel 4 video report of the verdict expected in the trial of Oded Golan-

Needless to say, the report is partial and misleading. Hershel Shanks and his supporters succeeded in their attempts to highlight the James ossuary and blur the fact that Mr. Golan and company were allegedly involved with an entire assemblage of highly suspected biblical artifacts. It is depicted here and in other coverage of the story as if it were a trial about an ossuary. In reality, Mr. Golan has beem indicted for allegedly faking and attempting to sell, in many cases with success, about 100 biblical artifacts, some of which are no less sensational than the ossuary. For example, the stone tablet bearing a monumental inscription of King Jehoash of Judah commemorating his construction of the Solomonic temple in Jerusalem, to name only one of not so few. But who in the media cares about facts these days?

Goren is correct- the trial isn’t just about the ossuary.  And that shouldn’t be forgotten.

We learn a lot about the people who vote for candidates…

Taking on the President

In bracketology.  Bring it on, Mr. President… bring it on!

What the Press Isn’t Saying About the ‘Trial of the Century’

It seems that in the recent reports concerning the trial of Oded Golan the press is acting as though he’s only on trial for the ossuary.  But this is false.  He is on trial because he’s accused of forging a range of ‘artifacts’.

The press has focused on only one object, keeping it and it alone in view of the public.  One has to wonder why.  And one has to wonder who gains by focusing only on this one item and not on the many suspect pieces.

It seems that a campaign of misinformation is being waged…