Daily Archives: 9 Jun 2018

It’s A Fake

An enigmatic sculpture of a king’s head dating back nearly 3,000 years has set off a modern-day mystery caper as scholars try to figure out whose face it depicts.

No.  It’s a fake.  Look at the thing.  It’s a modern fake.

The 2-inch sculpture is an exceedingly rare example of figurative art from the Holy Land during the 9th century B.C. — a period associated with biblical kings. Exquisitely preserved but for a bit of missing beard, nothing quite like it has been found before.

‘Preserved’… LOL.  IT’S A MODERN FAKE.

While scholars are certain the stern bearded figure donning a golden crown represents royalty, they are less sure which king it symbolizes, or which kingdom he may have ruled.   Archaeologists unearthed the diminutive figurine in 2017 during excavations at a site called Abel Beth Maacah, located just south of Israel’s border with Lebanon, near the modern-day town of Metula.


In a rare move, archaeologists and curators at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem rushed to put the piece on public display. A detailed report is set for publication in the June edition of the journal Near Eastern Archaeology.

‘Rare move… rushed…’ HAHAHAHAHA.  These days rubbish is ballyhooed the second it’s found.  Just ask Karen King…

Eran Arie, the Israel Museum’s curator of Iron Age and Persian archaeology, said the discovery was one of a kind. “In the Iron Age, if there’s any figurative art, and there largely isn’t, it’s of very low quality. And this is of exquisite quality.”

Because Carbon-14 dating cannot give a more exact date for the statue’s creation other than sometime in the 9th century, the field of potential candidates is large. Yahalom-Mack posited it could be kings Ben Hadad or Hazael of Damascus, Ahab or Jehu of Israel, or Ithobaal of Tyre, all characters appearing in the biblical narrative.

Carbon dating huh… ok.   FAKE.  But, hey, ‘proof’ of the Bible… so the BAR mob will love it.

Lab Day At #ORNL75

Here are a few more shots from Lab Day out at Oak Ridge National Lab, celebrating its 75th anniversary.  What a fascinating place with an amazing history.  We had a great time.


Deepen Your Understanding of the Bible

The ‘Person in the Pew’ commentary series is the only series of Commentaries written by a single person on the entire Bible and aimed at layfolk in modern history.


The books are all available in PDF format from the author for $199 by clicking my PayPal Link.  It’s a good commentary. But don’t take my word for it:


The commentary on the Bible by Jim West, a theologian who is lecturer in Biblical and Reformation Studies at Ming Hua Theological College in Hong Kong and is also Pastor of a Baptist Church in Petros, Tennessee, explains every chapter from Genesis to Revelation to “the person in the pew”: the ordinary member of a church, who, when reading the Bible, encounters a desperately foreign culture and therefore needs some guidance to understand it.

West’s approach is straightforward: he offers the Bible in a translation (American Standard Version) and interrupts the narrative every now and then to explain a couple of verses. His comments are aimed “at English speaking and reading members of the community of faith”: in other words, he makes the ancient texts accessible for believers.

As a pastor, West has an additional task: he needs to present the text in such a way that the faithful can use the Bible as a guideline. As I said, West’s approach is straightforward. The fact that he succeeds is encouraging for everyone who thinks that the study of ancient texts is meaningful.

I am no theologian and cannot judge the theological merits, but I can say that it is a pleasant read. I am currently reading a text I know quite well, Daniel, and West has pointed out many aspects I had not recognized before. The PDFs of West’s Commentary for the Person in the Pew are on my tablet, allowing me to go through the entire Bible when my train is delayed or has been cancelled. Given the quality of Dutch public transport I expect to have renewed my encounter with the Bible within a few months. – Jona Lendering

Call for Papers


Conference on Hebrew Language and Linguistics, in Cambridge, 8–10 july, 2019.

Graduates and Post-doctoral researchers are invited to submit abstracts for a poster and short presentation at a conference on Hebrew language and linguistics in Cambridge, 8–10 July, 2019. The poster and associated presentation should be on some aspect of Biblical or Post-Biblical Hebrew language. We are particularly keen to have papers that engage with primary manuscript sources, new theoretical analyses or comparative-historical perspectives.

Abstracts should be no longer than 300 words and should be sent by 15th October 2018 to Professor Geoffrey Khan (AMESHLL@HERMES.CAM.AC.UK) with the email subject line: Cambridge Conference Abstract.

The decisions on the abstracts will be announced on 1 November 2018.

Again, Images from Bullinger’s Reformationsgeschichte

And again, the source for these wondrous materials is here.