Burial in Ancient Israel Part 2: Early Ossuaries and Shaft Tombs

Ossuary of the Chalcolithic Period, designed to resembled a home

This is an ongoing series about graves and tombs in the ancient Levant, from the Paleolithic Period until the time of Christ. The entire series can be found here. During the Chalcolithic Period (the “Copper Age”), a new kind of burial started appearing along the coastal plain, at sites like Azor, Bene-Berak, and Hedera. This [Read More...]

Burial in Ancient Israel Part 1: The First Graves

Human remains from es-Skhul

Rather than just leaving you postless and bereft as I work on an essay, I decided to share little slices of it over the course of the week. The essay concerns burial practices in the Levant, from the earliest evidence up to the time of Christ. The way we handle our dead is of immense cultural significance, [Read More...]

Smithsonian Yanks “Jesus’s Wife”

As I mentioned on Tuesday, Smithsonian had a documentary called “The Gospel of Jesus’s Wife” ready to run at 8pm on Sunday night. In the wake of numerous claims that the fragment is a forgery, they’ve decided to postpone that documentary pending additional testing. From USA Today: The Smithsonian Channel has postponed plans to broadcast [Read More...]

“At any rate, a fake”

That’s the verdict of Giovanni Maria Vian, editor of L’Osservatore Romano (the newspaper of the Vatican) and an expert on patristic philology, on the “Jesus’s Wife” frament. Coptic Scholar Alberto Camplani seconded the opinion. The statements appeared in a pair of stories in today’s edition of L’Osservatore Romano, which of course means the headlines tomorrow will be “Vatican [Read More...]

Rumor: Harvard Theological Review Divorces “Jesus’s Wife” UPDATE: Or do they?

I was waiting for something more official, but the word is that the Harvard Theological Review has decided against publishing Karen King’s paper on the “Jesus’s Wife” fragment. It’s still just rumors, but the source of the story appears to be the NT Scholar Helmut Koester, and it’s percolated through enough sites without outright denials [Read More...]

Jesus’s “Wife” Hoax: Smithsonian To Air Documentary About the Fragment

jesussmith

This Sunday! That was fast. The Smithsonian Channel (unofficial motto: “Doing Our Part to Make America Dumber”) is airing a documentary about “The Gospel of Jesus’s Wife” on Sunday, less than two weeks after its revelation to the world. It will be interesting to hear reactions from defenders of Karen King who said she handled this [Read More...]

More From Francis Watson on “Jesus’s Wife” Fragment

Mark Goodacre has a supplemental report from Francis Watson of Durham University, who provided the initial report suggesting the fragment is a modern forgery. This one is called “Addendum: The End of the Line?” It’s interesting to see how the internet is shaping this story. In his first paragraph, Professor Watson mentions a comment by renowned Biblical scholar Richard [Read More...]

The Gnostic Noise Machine and the “Wife” of Jesus UPDATED

papyrus_front_text_500

I was going to let the whole “Jesus had a wife” thing pass by in silence, since the discovery of a minor fragmentary unprovenanced 4th century papyrus of a probable Gnostic text is about as relevant to actual Christianity as an episode of Scooby Doo. If it turns out to be authentic (big if) it [Read More...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X