On April 12th (just at the Easter Season passes) the Discovery Channel will air a program called ‘The Jesus Discovery’. Watch it if you must. Buy the book if you must. But before you do there’s something you need to know: it is a load of nonsense.
To be sure, the tiny cohort of promoters and fame seekers and folk with dollar signs in their eyes behind it will insist that it’s all 100% pure science. Don’t be fooled. Here’s a listing of what actual scholars think of the absurd claims made by the project-
Mark Goodacre made a short but important observation here and a bit of a longer one on the whole ‘Jonah’ issue here.
Bob Cargill completely denuded Tabor’s claims of legitimacy for the ‘find’ here and delivered what can only be described as the coup de grace here, when he shows that the images used by Tabor et al have been manipulated (and amusingly, shortly after he posted his piece, the photos Cargill questioned were removed from Tabor’s page). He also offers a handy chart if you’re trying to keep up with the constant mutations of Tabor’s theory. Think of it as a program guide. And above all, don’t miss Bob’s post here, exposing the logical failings of the Tabor theory.
Joan Taylor too chimed in with some very wise comments and so did many others including James McGrath, Chris Rollston (as well as here and here), Jodi Magness, and Eric Meyers. You can find all of them right here on the ASOR Blog along with others.
This project certainly isn’t archaeology; as Joel is unafraid to say, it’s about the $. And Deane G. isn’t afraid to be himself in his scathing denunciation of the claim.
Meanwhile Tom Verenna offers a roundup of the Talpiot joyfulness – including rejections of Simcha’s patently absurd claim that no one has proven he and Tabor wrong!
Why even the place where the ossuary found is steeped in farce. Only two people on the planet believe Tabor and Jacobovici. Tabor and Jacobovici (and perhaps people who wear aluminum foil hats or who are employed by the Discovery Channel and are charged with promoting the thing heedless of scholarship contrary to the wishes of the filmmakers).
Others, too, weigh in in an attempt to inform the often all too gullible and sensation-craving public.
Jason Staples exposes the absurdity and contradictory nature of Tabor’s claims. This is why I suggested above that only Tabor and Jacobovici believe what they’re selling.
If the world were a scroll and the sea filled with ink, there wouldn’t be sufficient space or time to list every single well stated (and not so well stated) denunciation of this unfortunate example of pseudo-archaeology.
So, watch the special, read the book. Just do it in the same frame of mind as you would if you were watching something on the SyFy channel.