Skip to comments.Israel begins investigation into authenticity of Jesus inscription
Posted on 03/05/2003 7:38:38 PM PST by Mr. Mulliner
Israel begins investigation into authenticity of Jesus inscription
The Associated Press Mar. 5, 2003
The Israeli Antiquities Authority began studying an ancient stone box on Wednesday in an attempt to determine if it was used to bury Jesus' brother James. If authenticated, it could be the oldest archaeological link to the biblical figures.
The box arrived in Israel Wednesday from Toronto, Canada, where it had been on display at the Royal Ontario Museum after Israel's Antiquities Authority granted a temporary export permit to the Israeli owner of the box, Oded Golan.
The Antiquities Authority set up two commissions of archaeologists, geologists and language experts to study the box with the inscription "James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus," which Israeli and French scholars believe dates to between A.D. 50-70.
The words were engraved on the burial box, or ossuary, which was the form of Jewish burial until about A.D. 70. The New Testament identifies James as Jesus' brother and the leader of Jerusalem's early Christians.
It was unclear where the box was found. Golan has said that he cannot remember the name of the antiquities dealer he bought it from for US$200 in the 1970s in Jerusalem's Old City. Golan had showed the ossuary to a French scholar, Andre Lemaire, who revealed the finding in November in an article in Biblical Archaeological Review magazine.
Since then, experts have raised the possibility that the inscription did not refer to Jesus of Nazareth or that the Jesus section of the phrase might have been forged. But Israel's Geological Survey found that the patina on the stone indicates the letters were engraved in ancient times and were not tampered with.
The mention of a brother on ossuaries was very rare, and could indicate this particular find was very important, Lemaire believes.
Israel's Antiquities Authority is also trying to obtain an ancient stone tablet detailing repairs to be made to the Jewish Temple of King Solomon that could be an extremely rare confirmation of biblical narrative. The existence of the tablet was disclosed in January.
The unnamed owner of the tablet had given it briefly to the Geological Survey, which dated it back to the 9th century B.C. and said it could have actually been a part of Solomon's Temple, destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 B.C. The owner of the artifact has since taken it from the institute.
Although news reports had said Golan, the owner of the ossuary, also had the tablet, Golan has denied the claim. Israeli police have opened an investigation to determine the whereabouts of the artifact and turn it over to the Antiquities Authority for a thorough study.
That's what I thought also. The box may be old but the writing isn't if I remember correctly.
What does that have to do with anything???
Ever taken a look at the spelling here? That comment means very little...
Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit.
Then Joseph, being aroused from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord commanded him and took to him his wife, and did not know her till she had brought forth her firstborn Son.
Define 'her firstborn Son' for me, please.
Someone else has already posted some of the later passages that make it clear that Jesus, according to the flesh, had an unknown number of half-brothers and half-sisters.
I don't know why so many feel compelled to hang on to some strange doctrine, easily disproven, that some ignoramus hatched up centuries ago. They gain nothing by it, and it proves nothing.
The article that heads up this thread says the exact opposite:
But Israel's Geological Survey found that the patina on the stone indicates the letters were engraved in ancient times and were not tampered with.
I agree with You!
Not only were Yosef and Miriam human beings, they Both were Sinners in Need of The SAVIOR...Jesus The Holy and Anointed One - Yeshua HaMoshiach!
Yosef being much older than the young Miriam, may have been a Widower with children, the Scriptures are silent concerning Yosef's life before he became betrothed to Miriam.
The Hebrew word for son is: "Bar" or "Ben".
I believe that the Ossuary Box and the identifying Inscription on it is Authentic.
A dear friend of mine leading a Archaeological Dig Team in Caesarea, Israel uncovered The "Pilate Plate" in 1973.
For centuries the Theologians argued that: "Pilate" was nothing more than a Myth and not a real figure in the Bible, as Nothing was noted about this Roman Governor anywhere with the exception of what is written for us in the Gospel accounts.
A closer investigation of the issue revealed that Pilate's name and position was erased from ALL Roman Records, History Books and Physical evidence because he, Pilate, was deemed a Lunatic - Nut case, he directly disobeyed Caesar.
He was dishonorably discharged from Caesar's service and the Roman army, he was placed in a Camp for disgruntled dissidents...and Nothing more was ever heard of him or his family.
The Pilate Plate: the Inscription/Identification Plate that once hung (as the Title Plate) over Pilate's Throne/Seat in the Amphitheater in Caesarea is currently on display in the Israel Museum, Jerusalem and a replica of it sits just outside of the ancient Amphitheater.
Archaeology...Is Proving that THE HOLY BIBLE IS ACCURATE 100%!
Amen & Amen.
2) The Bible was not written in English.
Mark 6:1 ¶And he went out from thence, and came into his own country; and his disciples follow him. 2 And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands? 3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him. 4 But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house.
Context: His own kin, His own country, His own house, they referred to Him as 'the carpenter', come on dude.
Would you like me to post it in koine Greek too?
I've always wondered if there were other young men named Yeshua during this period because there were certainly many others named James and Yosef. I mean, are there any records of, say, Yeshua of Jerusalem or Yeshua of (another town)? And I've also wondered how translators decided the name Yeshua was the name Jesus (not just in this antiquity instance).
You seem pretty knowledgeable about this wonderful history. Thank you.
Yeshua is just another form of Yehoshua or Joshua. It was as common a name then as it is today. I have never figured out how "Yaakov" (Jacob) became "James."
"James" in Italian is Giacomo, so my guess is that James is a contraction of some Latin form of the name. The Vulgate forms of James are Iocobus, Iocobi, and Iocobum. I don't know what the grammatical forms or rules are that determine the Latin suffixes, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night (kidding). :-)
Please FREEPMAIL me if you want on or off the "Gods, Graves, Glyphs" PING list --
Archaeology/Anthropology/Ancient Cultures/Artifacts/Antiquities, etc.
|OSSUARY POSES PROBLEMS FOR CATHOLIC TEACHING ^
| Posted by az4vlad
On Religion ^ 11/20/2002 6:41:02 PM PST with 106 comments
IntellectualConservative.com ^ | November 20, 2002 | J. Grant Swank, Pastor
Was Mary perpetually a Virgin? Are Catholics right to challenge people to be virgins for life like nuns and priests? The box of bones is exciting as a "find." But for Roman Catholic Church and Eastern Orthodox theologians, it poses a real problem that could take some of the fun out of it. These two branches of Christendom believe that Mary was perpetually a virgin. That is, obviously, she and husband Joseph never enjoyed Gods good gift of sex in marriage. Of course, there is no biblical support for this. In fact, biblical support states that the two had...
|Ossuary markings fake, Israeli archeologist says ^
| Posted by NYer
On Religion ^ 06/17/2003 1:49:47 PM PDT with 16 comments
The Globe and Mail ^ | June 17, 2003 | James Adams
A committee of archeologists and geologists commissioned by the Israeli Antiquities Authority is set to declare, perhaps as early as today, that the inscription on the James ossuary is fake.The limestone ossuary, which its supporters say once contained the remains of James, brother of Jesus Christ, has been undergoing tests at the direction of the Antiquities Authority since it was returned in mid-January to Tel Aviv from Toronto. It had been on public display, for the first time anywhere, at the Royal Ontario Museum starting in November of 2002, where it drew 100,000 visitors.Israeli state broadcaster Channel One featured an...
|James ossuary determined to have been "fake" ^
| Posted by Israel Insider
On News/Activism ^ 06/18/2003 5:15:18 AM PDT with 21 comments
Israel Insider ^ | 6/18/2003 | Israel Insider
The Israeli Antiquities Authority announced today that an ancient stone box with the inscription "James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus," was a fake. The authority also determined that a stone tablet bearing the "Joash inscription," with fifteen lines of ancient Hebrew detailing improvements at the Temple, was a forgery. The inscriptions on both items were made "in the modern era." Click here for this breaking story
|James ossuary determined to have been "fake" ^
| Posted by el_chupacabra
On Religion ^ 06/18/2003 5:35:17 AM PDT with 19 comments
Israel Insider ^ | 06-18-03 | Ellis Shuman
At a press conference held this morning in Jerusalem, officials from the Israeli Antiquities Authority announced that an ancient stone box with the inscription "James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus," was a fake. The authority also determined that the "Joash inscription," a stone tablet with fifteen lines of ancient Hebrew detailing improvements at the Temple, was a forgery. Israel Insider reported details proving the ossuary a fake last November. The inscriptions on both items were made "in the modern era," the Antiquities Authority announced. The stone burial box, known as an ossuary, attracted international attention when the Biblical Archaeological...
|Dealer accused of forging James ossuary inscription ^
| Posted by Pharmboy
On News/Activism ^ 07/23/2003 4:37:55 AM PDT with 3 comments
CBC ^ | 23 Jul 2003 | Anon.
JERUSALEM - Israeli police have arrested an antiquities dealer in connection with two alleged forgeries, including a burial box once thought to belong to the brother of Jesus. Oded Golan appeared in a Jerusalem court Tuesday, a day after police picked him up at his Tel Aviv home. Police allege Golan faked an inscription on the so-called James ossuary to make it appear it belonged to the brother of Jesus. The limestone box is inscribed in Aramaic with the words "Ya'akov (James), son of Yosef (Joseph), brother of Yeshua (Jesus)." Experts later branded the inscription and a tablet as fakes....
|NPR At It Again--Fake Ossuary of St. James ^
| Posted by tridentine
On Religion ^ 06/18/2003 11:12:10 AM PDT with 57 comments
Vanity | June 18, 2003 | tridentine
NPR just reported on the fake ossuary of St. James in Toronto--but with a spin that it had been purported to the ossuary "of a brother of Jesus"--thus putting their rather non-orthodox spin on things (i.e., questioning the Virgin Birth, etc.) Nice work again from our government's radio network. NPR--an affront not only to all Christians but to all Americans.
|Geologist rebuts claim of forged Jesus inscription on ossuary ^
| Posted by Phil V.
On News/Activism ^ 12/21/2003 5:31:47 AM PST with 6 comments
Ha'aretz ^ | Sun., December 21, 2003 | By Amiram Barkat, Haaretz Correspondent and AP
w w w . h a a r e t z d a i l y . c o m Last update - 09:47 21/12/2003 Geologist rebuts claim of forged Jesus inscription on ossuary By Amiram Barkat, Haaretz Correspondent and AP The disputed ossuary. (Israel Antiquities Authority) The heated controversy over the authenticity of the inscription naming Jesus on an ancient burial box discovered a year ago has flared up again, after claims by an American geologist that the Israeli findings, dismissing the inscription on a small 2,000-year-old limestone ossuary as a forgery, were flawed. James Harrell published his opinion Friday...
|Legal issues, cracks and scholars' FRAUD reports damage "James ossuary" ^
| Posted by Israel Insider
On News/Activism ^ 11/05/2002 7:30:49 AM PST with 12 comments
Israel Insider ^ | 11/5/2002 | Israel Insider
An ancient burial box believed to have belonged to James, the Biblical brother of Jesus, was damaged while being sent for display at a Toronto museum. The museum is awaiting word from the ossuary's owner before attempting to repair the box, but the owner is being questioned by police as the burial box may actually belong to the State of Israel. Meanwhile, Israeli scholars insist that the inscription on the box is a fraud. Click here to learn more about this possible fraud!
|Accused forger defends 'Jesus ossuary' in front of expert panel ^
| Posted by yonif
On News/Activism ^ 07/29/2003 8:20:30 AM PDT
Jerusalem Post ^ | Jul. 29, 2003 | ABIGAIL RADOSZKOWICZ
"Jesus ossuary" owner Oded Golan, recently released on bail after an elaborate antiquities forgery lab was found in his home, was the guest attraction the Israeli premiere of the documentary, James, Brother of Jesus, which traces the story of the ossuary and its disputed inscription, at the Jerusalem Cinematheque on Sunday. A German journalist in the audience asked collector Golan how he failed to notice the intriguing inscription for so many years until he showed it in the fall of 2002 to Andre Lemaire of the Sorbonne, a world expert on Aramaic inscriptions, who first linked inscription to Jesus of...
|A Discovery That's Just Too Perfect [James brother of Jesus Ossuary is a hoax-my title] ^
| Posted by Polycarp
On News/Activism ^ 11/01/2002 10:45:35 AM PST with 428 comments
latimes.com ^ | October 29, 2002 | Robert Eisenman
COMMENTARY A Discovery That's Just Too Perfect Claims that stone box held remains of Jesus' brother may be suspect. By Robert Eisenman Robert Eisenman is the author of "James the Brother of Jesus" (Penguin, 1998) and a professor of Middle East religions and archeology at Cal State Long Beach. October 29 2002 James, the brother of Jesus, was so well known and important as a Jerusalem religious leader, according to 1st century sources, that taking the brother relationship seriously was perhaps the best confirmation that there ever was a historical Jesus. Put another way, it was not whether Jesus had...
|GOTTA SEE THIS-War Endur.Freedom 10/29/02-Amman,Ariel,Beit Zarzir,Ossuary,Irbil,Kabul ^
| Posted by Diogenesis
On News/Activism ^ 10/28/2002 11:19:51 AM PST with 19 comments
Reuters, AP, Yahoo, and the usual suspects | 10/29/02 | The Armies of Good against the Axis of Evil after the 911 Atrocities
GOTTA SEE THIS - War for Enduring Freedom 10/29/02 - Amman, Ariel, Beit Zarzir, Ossuary, Irbil, Bagram, Kabul, Kandahar BREAKING: Amman, Jordan - Islamic terrorism and murder, BREAKING: Ariel, Israel - Islamic terrorism and murder, BREAKING: Beit Zarzir, Israel, el-Heib clan and Hezbollah, BREAKING: Israel - Ossuary found, Gaza, Irbil, Bagram, Kabul, Kandahar =========== Amman =========== BREAKING: new Islamic terror attack In Amman, Jordan, murdered by a terrorist(s), US diplomat Lawrence Foley, brutally shot in front of his Amman home In Amman, Jordan, prisoners were three days earlier returned from Iraq. Were any terrorists or criminals, and not just political...
|Ossuary was genuine, inscription was faked ^
| Posted by SMEDLEYBUTLER
On Religion ^ 10/31/2002 1:12:36 PM PST with 24 comments
Jewsweek ^ | 31 October 2002 | Rochelle I. Altman
SCRIPT TEASE: A detailed view of an inscription in Aramaic reading "James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus" appears on an empty ossuary, or limestone burial box for bones. Ossuary was genuine, inscription was fakedI'm an expert on ancient scripts and I'm here to report that the "James ossuary" was genuine, but the second part of its inscription is a fraud. By Rochelle I. Altman/Special to Jewsweek Magazine Jewsweek.com | As an expert on scripts and an historian of writing systems, I was asked to examine this inscription and make a report. I did. The bone-box is original; the first...
|Ossuary was genuine, inscription was faked ^
| Posted by Vince Ferrer
On News/Activism ^ 11/01/2002 7:58:40 PM PST with 23 comments
Jewsweek ^ | November 1, 2002 | Rochelle I. Altman
As an expert on scripts and an historian of writing systems, I was asked to examine this inscription and make a report. I did. The bone-box is original; the first inscription, which is in Aramaic, "Jacob son of Joseph," is authentic. The second half of the inscription, "brother of Jesus," is a poorly executed fake and a later addition. This report has already been distributed on at least two scholarly lists. Please note that the fraud is so blatant that I did not bother to go into extreme detail on whether the faked addition is supposed to be Hebrew or...
|Let me explain-the owner of the infamous Jesus ossuary comes forward to tell his side of the story ^
| Posted by SJackson
On News/Activism ^ 07/15/2003 3:36:00 PM PDT with 4 comments
Jewsweek ^ | 7-15-03
Home > Society Let me explain For the first time since the accusations of fraud, the owner of the infamous Jesus ossuary comes forward to tell his side of the story. by Elaine Ruth Fletcher July 11, 2003 STUCK IN A BOX: Israeli Consul General Meir Romem inspects damage to the James Ossuary during its media unveiling at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Canada in this Nov. 14, 2002 picture. The ancient burial box purported to have held the bones of Jesus' brother Jamesis a...
Ossuary UpdateWhat has become clear is that there is no final report -- no document subscribed to by all committee members explaining the decision that both the James ossuary inscription and the Jehoash inscription are modern forgeries. Instead, the "final report" consists only of individual statements by committee members commenting on the inscriptions from the viewpoint of their expertise. More significantly, this final report, such as it is, allays none of the doubts about the study expressed in these pages, nor answers any of the questions we have raised. They all remain... Let us be clear: The IAA committees decision that both inscriptions are forgeries may be correct. Both inscriptions may be forgeries... The critical parts of the Materials Committee conclusion are really supported only by two people, Professor Yuval Goren and Dr. Avner Ayalon. We do not yet have the individual reports they submitted describing their work, only this summary. Apparently Dr. Ayalon performed the isotope tests and Professor Goren interpreted them in the light of other facts relating to the inscription. It is interesting that at the press conference announcing the committees conclusions, Dr. Ayalons name was omitted from the list of committee members -- even though he was the key participant. This has never been explained... The director of the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), Shuka Dorfman, has decided to bar BAR. Dorfman, a retired general in the Israeli army who was appointed to head the agency despite the fact that he had no archaeological training, has not forgotten his military ways; he is accustomed to issuing ordersand having them obeyed. Our Jerusalem correspondent reports that Shuka has decreed that IAA archaeologists may not give interviews to BAR, nor will they be permitted to comment about any IAA excavation or find.
Biblical Archaeology ReviewIsrael Antiquities Authority Suspects BAR Editor of Colluding with ForgersWhen we arrived, Shlomo introduced us to a guest who had preceded usa pleasant young Israeli who appeared to be in his early thirties. He was Amir Ganor, the chief fraud investigator of the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA)... had come all the way from Israel to talk to Moussaieff about his collection and also about his possible connection with Oded Golan, the owner of the bone box with the James inscription. Shlomo quickly informed me, however, that I, too, was "under suspicion" of being part of a group that had foisted this forgery on an unsuspecting public. And that André Lemaire, the Sorbonne paleographer who was the author of the BAR article about the inscription, was also under suspicion. I laughed. But Ganor confirmed that I was indeed under suspicion and that when I would next come to Israel, I would become part of the investigation and would be called in for questioning.
Biblical Archaeology ReviewScholars say Jesus box may be genuinePanelists, speaking in Atlanta at the annual joint conference of the American Academy of Religion and the Society of Biblical Literature on Sunday, said authorities should examine the box more closely before passing judgment... James Harrell, a geologist at the University of Toledo and member of the Association for the Study of Marble and Other Stones in Antiquity, said his analysis of the inscription suggests the missing patina could simply be the result of overcleaning -- not forgery... Oded Golan, the collector who came forward with the ossuary in October 2002 and has since been accused of being the forger, said it had been "undoubtedly cleaned" while in his family's possession but did not know how. Panelists said that while oxygen isotope analysis found most of the inscription showed some sort of modern influence, the last part of it was consistent with the ancient patina -- specifically the part that names Jesus.
Scientists say that this box dates from A.D. 63.
The Associated PressIsrael Antiquities Authority's Report Deeply FlawedThen she drops a bomb. She finds that the same yellowish patina that is on the side of the ossuary is also in the incisions of the letters of "brother of Jesus." Her exact words are: "A microscopic examination revealed the same yellowish patina as on the ossuary surface inside the letters 'brother of Jesus.'" If I understand this correctly, it means that she finds the last two words of the inscription to be authentic! And if the last two words are authentic, then, based on the paleographic, linguistic and orthographic considerations outlined above, the entire inscription is very probably authentic. Paleographical analysis shows that the entire inscription was engraved as a continuum. And linguistically it would be difficult to explain an ossuary that was inscribed only "brother of Jesus," with nothing else, but waiting to be completed by a forger.
by André Lemaire
Biblical Archaeology Review
Nov/Dec 2003Internet Rumor Proves GroundlessEric Meyers, a prominent archaeologist and former president of the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR)... has posted an article on the internet entitled, "Well-known Israeli Archaeologist Casts More Doubt on Authenticity of James Ossuary." The Israeli archaeologist is not Meyers, who is American, but a source unnamed in the article who claims he "spotted [the ossuary] in a dealer's shop [in the mid-1990's] lacking the 'brother of Jesus' element in the inscription," as the subhead on Meyers' article reads... Meyers reports that "Sometime in 2001 my [unnamed] source [you will learn his name in the March/April 2004 BAR] alleges that [Oded] Golan through his lawyers offered for sale to The International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem, the so-called James Ossuary, now in its revised and expanded form, for a sum of $2 million." That is, since it was seen in the mid-1990s without "the brother of Jesus," by 2001 it had acquired that addition... In receipt of such damning evidence, one would think that Meyers would do a little checking before placing this kind of charge on the internet. He could have at least called the International Christian Embassy to verify an unnamed source... Malcolm Hedding, the executive director of the International Christian Embassy, checked his records and found that he had been visited at 11:00 in the morning on November 28, 2002 [not 2001] by a man named Uri Ovnat, whose business card identified him, not as a lawyer, but as director of the International Marketing Development Enterprises, Ltd. in Ramat haSharon, Israel... In other words, the visit occurred not in 2001, before Lemaire had seen the ossuary, but after Lemaire's BAR article appeared in late October 2002... Uri Ovnat visited the International Christian Embassy with the magazine and a proposal that the Christian Embassy buy the ossuary, urging that this would be a major attraction for tourists. Hedding says that this is not the kind of thing the Christian Embassy does, and that was the end of it. Ovnat says no price was ever mentioned. Nor did Ovnat and Golan ever mention price, according to Ovnat. Hedding says his recollection is that a price of $2 million was mentioned by Ovnat. Ovnat says he did not approach anyone else... [W]e should not rush into print with unsourced rumors in an effort to denigrate Oded Golan. At least get the facts straight.
by Hershel Shanks
Huh? Neither Hebrew nor Aramaic has a word that means "cousin". Your male cousins are your "brothers," your female cousins are your "sisters".
Actually, your "brothers" and "sisters" in Biblical times could be anything from blood brothers and sisters to the unrelated children of your father's close friends or business associates, with whom you played growing up. It doesn't even necessarily demand a blood relationship.
Nothing in Scripture identifies anyone except Jesus as the son or daughter of Mary. Also, the "James" described as the "brother of Jesus" is elsewhere in Scripture specifically identified as the "son of Alphaeus" and probably also identified as the son of "Mary the wife of Clopas"*, who is not the same Mary as the mother of Jesus. He certainly wasn't the son of Joseph.
(*Clopas and Alphaeus may have been the same person; a Jewish/Greek name dualism like "Saul" and "Paul".)
The term "firstborn son" does not mean that someone had other children; the firstborn was special under the Law of Moses. The firstborn was the firstborn whether his mother had zero or 25 other children.