There Is Something Vaguely Anti-Semitic in Importing The New Testament Into The Old

As though the Old Testament has no meaning (or cannot be understood properly) without the New Testament when the truth is, the New Testament cannot be properly understood without the Old Testament.

Nope.  You aren’t the first to notice something because you’re a brilliant exegete; you’re first to notice something that no one else ever has because you’re insane.

Again, the New Testament needs the Old to be understood; but the Old doesn’t need the New.  So just let the Old Testament be the Word of God in its own right, ok?  Bloody Marcionites.

When Archaeology is Dumbed Down and Sensationalized, This is the Result: Megan Fox

Megan Fox is returning to the small screen with her new Travel Channel docu-series, Legends of the Lost With Megan Fox. The four-episode show will the Hollywood starlet embarking on a journey across the four corners of the globe to unearth some of the greatest mysteries of history.

Instead of watching what is sure to be rubbish, take Aren Maeir’s MOOC and learn what archaeology really is and really does.

Chasing Sodom

This kind of nonsense never ends.

A multi-disciplinary team of scientists has a new theory for why all human civilization abruptly ended on the banks of the Dead Sea some 3,700 years ago. According to analyzed archaeological evidence, the disaster of biblical proportions can be explained by a massive explosion, similar to one recorded over 100 years ago in Russia. …

As reported in Science News, at the recently concluded Denver-based ASOR Annual Meeting, director of scientific analysis at Jordan’s Tall el-Hammam Excavation Project Phillip J. Silvia presented a paper, “The 3.7kaBP Middle Ghor Event: Catastrophic Termination of a Bronze Age Civilization” during a session on Environmental Archaeology of the Ancient Near East.

Let’s give it up for rank speculation….

Oh So Now the Times of Israel is Suddenly Interested in Ethics…

The Times of Israel, which regularly pumps up any artifact it deems helpful to Israeli political causes, is suddenly concerned about the ethics of promoting fake Dead Sea Scrolls…

The clock is ticking as potential forgeries’ content increasingly skews and pollutes scholarly research. As the corpus of Dead Sea Scrolls material is dissected with surgical precision, any and all information from the presumed scribes is included in numerous scholarly articles, data banks and dictionaries. Correcting these statistical and contextual fallacies could take generations.

Suddenly conscientious.  It’s almost as though the promoters of all kinds of unprovenanced artifacts are afraid that a #ScrollsToo movement may be their undoing, so they’re trying to get ahead of it.

Archaeologist Dr. Josephine Munch Rasmussen and Årstein Justnes, professor of Biblical Studies at the University of Agder, Norway, wrote in an email, “Rather than more physical testing, the provenance and legality of the post-2002 ‘Dead Sea Scrolls’ fragments in the MOTB and the Schøyen collections need to be critically addressed.  Justnes runs the blog site The Lying Pen of Scribes to document for free public use the mounting evidence of forgeries in the post-2002 Dead Sea Scroll-like fragments.

Don’t forget that along with Justnes, Roberta Mazza and Michael Langlois have been sounding the alarm for YEARS.  It’s nice to see others coming to the party, even if they’re more than a little late.

The media suddenly being concerned about authenticity is a joke.  If they weren’t afraid of the impending backlash among scholars and donors, they still wouldn’t care and they’d still be hawking any unprovenanced rubbish that generated publicity.

You don’t deserve applause when the jig is up and you ‘suddenly’ see the light.  You just deserve disdain.

The Museum of the Bible and Unprovenanced Rubbish

I have news for you- anyone with any sense can look at that piece and tell it’s a modern fake.  But at least the Museum is admitting that it has fakes.

The Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC says five of its most valuable artifacts — all once thought to be part of the historic Dead Sea Scrolls — are fake and will not be displayed anymore. German-based scholars tested the fragments and found that five “show characteristics inconsistent with ancient origin and therefore will no longer be displayed at the museum.”CNN raised questions about the museum’s Dead Sea Scroll fragments in an article published last November, as the Green family prepared to unveil their new, $500 million museum.

CNN taking credit for questioning the fakes is ABSURD. Actual scholars like Roberta Mazza and Michael Langlois have been talking about the rubbish for years.

Steve Green, the Bible museum’s evangelical founder and chairman, would not say how much his family spent for the 16 fragments in its collection. But scholars say even small fragments with little text can fetch millions in the antiquities market. “Though we had hoped the testing would render different results, this is an opportunity to educate the public on the importance of verifying the authenticity of rare biblical artifacts, the elaborate testing process undertaken and our commitment to transparency,” said Jeffrey Kloha, the chief curatorial officer for Museum of the Bible.

Bottom line- if an artifact is unprovenanced, don’t pretend it’s valuable.

NB– It’s worth reminding folk to read Nina Burleigh’s book ‘Unholy Business‘.

Did They Find Thecla Or Priscilla’s Skull?

And when they finish their facial reconstruction will we know what Thecla or Priscilla or any number of the women who aided and assisted Paul looked like?   No way to know; and no.  But by giminy that won’t stop BAR and the 700 Club and the other sketchy outlets of archaeological data from touting the discovery and making outrageous claims.

Just watch for it.

A woman buried at St Paul’s Catacombs almost 2,000 years ago is to be ‘brought back to life’ thanks to expert facial reconstruction techniques which will bring visitors face-to-face with an ancient local resident. Eventually, this facial reconstruction will form part of the site’s permanent display, Heritage Malta explained in a statement.   The woman’s skeleton was discovered during archaeological excavations beneath the catacombs’ new visitor centre and was chosen for reconstruction as her skull was the only one found with a complete jaw.

She is believed to have been between 18 and 27 and roughly 145cm tall when she died.  Studies on the bones indicate that although the woman must have had a reasonably healthy childhood, she was already suffering from degenerative joint disease, possibly due to mechanical work.

Osteoarchaeologist and forensic anthropologist Roberto Micciche, Adjunct of Anthropology at the University of Palermo, together with forensic anthropologist Daniele Di Lorenzo are carrying out reconstruction work. The project forms part of the post-excavation studies of the archaeological excavations held at St Paul’s Catacombs.

I’m literally giddy in anticipation at what the sensationalists are going to do to this story.  Can’t wait!

Let the fun commence in 3….. 2…… 1……. GO!

I Suppose If You’re Going to Speculate, Go Ahead And Make The Whole Thing Up

What says speculation like asking questions about what a guy who lived BEFORE someone thinks of what someone they never knew, read, or encountered thought….

We need a new reality tv series called ‘scholarship gone wild’ where unhinged academics get together and talk about stuff they completely make up and publish.  And whoever has the dumbest most speculative idea ‘wins’.

I nominate this guy for episode one.

#ICYMI – The Bee Stings the Ridiculous Interpretations of Revelation

In a groundbreaking discovery sure to change the future of eschatological studies, scholars revealed Monday that the autograph of the book of Revelation originally included a detailed end times and rapture chart to help readers make sense of the apocalyptic literature.

Archaeologists working on the island of Patmos recently uncovered the original autograph of the book and found the intricate chart detailing the church age, pre-tribulation rapture of the church, seven-year period of turmoil, and subsequent millennial reign of Christ. The chart also featured detailed descriptions of each of the twenty-one dispensations of history, scholars confirmed.

“This is an exciting discovery,” lead archaeologist Dr. Wendell Holmes told reporters. “End-times charts have become a popular past-time of the church over the past century, and now we know there is solid biblical warrant for their existence.”

Holmes further stated that the find confirmed that the futurist, premillennial framework for interpreting the book of Revelation is the correct one, much to the delight of modern end times prophecy experts like John Hagee, David Jeremiah, and Hal Lindsey.

At publishing time, scholars had also confirmed the discovery of the Apostle John’s rudimentary, parchment-based prophecy blog, on which he posted constant prophecy updates predicting the Lord Jesus would return by 1988.

It’s funny because there are people who really think like that.

The ‘God of the OT is Wrathful and the God of the NT is Loving’ is a False Dichotomy and A Lie

The premise of the tweet below is simply false.  The God portrayed in the Old Testament shows love (hesed) to people constantly.  Read Hosea.  Read Exodus!   And the God portrayed in the New Testament can get as angry as he pleases.  Read the Gospels (with their many references to hell and judgment).  Read the book of Revelation!

This false dichotomy has been around too long and casual readers of the Bible need to stop acting as if it were legit, because every time they do, they put their ignorance on full display.

No, It Doesn’t

Stop it BAR.  Just stop it.

Do you know why the Ain Dara temple doesn’t shed any light on ‘Solomon’s Temple’?  Because there’s not an archaeological shred of Solomon’s Temple to be found.  Comparing something you have (Ain Dara) with something you don’t have (Solomon’s Temple) is idiotic.  It’s like comparing a car (which you have) to a submarine (which you don’t have).  You can’t compare the known and the unknown.  Analogy, in other words, is extraordinarily limited and usually misleading.

So stop it BAR.  Just stop it.

Archaeology is More Untrustworthy By the Day

From the blatantly self serving archaeological claims made in support of political goals as evidenced by Mazar and the City of David excavations to the ‘discoveries’ of Mellaart who faked his own finds…. archaeology is becoming less and less credible.

A famed archaeologist well-known for discovering the sprawling 9,000-year-old settlement in Turkey called Çatalhöyük seems to have faked several of his ancient findings and may have run a “forger’s workshop” of sorts, one researcher says.

James Mellaart, who died in 2012, created some of the “ancient” murals at Çatalhöyük that he supposedly discovered; he also forged documents recording inscriptions that were found at Beyköy, a village in Turkey, said geoarchaeologist Eberhard Zangger, president of the Luwian Studies Foundation. Zangger examined Mellaart’s apartment in London between Feb. 24 and 27, finding “prototypes,” as Zangger calls them, of murals and inscriptions that Mellaart had claimed were real.

“He used the same approach for over 50 years,” Zangger told Live Science. “He would first acquire a tremendously broad and deep knowledge [about the area he was interested in]. Then, he would try to use this knowledge to develop a coherent historic panorama,” Zangger said. This process in itself is not uncommon for an archaeologist or historian. The only difference is that legitimate researchers then look for evidence that either supports or refutes their ideas. Instead, “Mellaart would fabricate drawings of artifacts and translations of alleged documents to reinforce his theories,” Zangger said.

Archaeology needs to clean up its house before it becomes the National Enquirer of science.