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New Archaeologists Evdience that shows the bible right!


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Initial post: Dec 27, 2012 7:16:43 AM PST
At the time, the site's archaeologists proposed once more identifying the site with the Biblical settlement "Mozah" mentioned in the Book of Joshua - a town in the tribal lands of Benjamin bordering on Judaea (Joshua 18: 26). The proposal was based, among other things, on the discovery at the site of a public building, a large structure with storehouses, and a considerable number of silos.

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/163586

So much for the claims of other people that "We" as believes are not founding stuff to back up our claims.

Posted on Dec 27, 2012 7:27:10 AM PST
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Posted on Dec 27, 2012 9:18:22 AM PST
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Posted on Dec 27, 2012 9:40:08 AM PST
So what?

There really is a Mount Olympus in Greece, does that mean all the Greek myths are true and should be taken as fact?

Posted on Dec 27, 2012 9:55:56 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 27, 2012 10:03:00 AM PST
Mark Twain mentions the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers in his books Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, so I guess Finn and Sawyer are not fictional characters and should be accepted as people who actually existed. Just because certain places actually exist in reality does not immediately give credence to stories and make them factual, true and occurring in reality. Plenty of ancient stories, myths and even modern works of fiction have a backdrop of real events (i.e. WWII, the Great Depression etc...) and real places (i.e. Chicago, America, Europe, Asia etc...)

The NT was not finished being written until the first 25 years of the 2nd century. If Jesus actually did exist and was not a cobbled together myth. The Bible was not finished being written until nearly 100 years after his crucification. Anyway, crucification, resurrections, virgin births appear in several other religious followings with slightly or completely different names (i.e. Merri, Mari, Marie in place of Mary). Some of these crucification, resurrection and virgin birth stories also predate Christianity by several hundred years while others were vying for acceptance during the same time frame and for a hundred years after the supposed crucification of Jesus Christ.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 27, 2012 9:56:55 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 27, 2012 9:57:51 AM PST
logic is not schlumpies strong suit

he is more into emotion than thinking logically

and his communication skills are lacking
people skills too

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 27, 2012 11:14:10 AM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 7:02:20 AM PST
andthehorseirodeinontoo? says:

i want to see evidence that you really have a band
name the members
tell us how often you practice
post a link to a video of you performing

SHUT UP. I had it up to hear with you. Stop hassassing me now! This nothing to do with what I am talking about.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 7:07:18 AM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 7:08:51 AM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 7:14:45 AM PST
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Posted on Dec 28, 2012 7:24:28 AM PST
Scientific Mind's

The NT was not finished being written until the first 25 years of the 2nd century. If Jesus actually did exist and was not a cobbled together myth. The Bible was not finished being written until nearly 100 years after his crucification. Anyway, crucification, resurrections, virgin births appear in several other religious followings with slightly or completely different names (i.e. Merri, Mari, Marie in place of Mary). Some of these crucification, resurrection and virgin birth stories also predate Christianity by several hundred years while others were vying for acceptance during the same time frame and for a hundred years after the supposed crucification of Jesus Christ.

Joseph L. Shumpert

Tertullian of Carthage (~207)
Clement of Alexandria (~180)
Irenaeus of Lyons (~180)
Muratorian Fragment (~170)
Justin Martyr (~150)
Papias of Hierapolis (~125)

What Tertullian tells us (~207)
The Gospels were written by Matthew and John, who were apostles, and Luke and Mark, who were "apostolic men." Mark's Gospel is the record of Peter's preaching.
They tell the same basic facts about Jesus, including his virgin birth and his fulfillment of prophecy.
They bore the names of their authors from antiquity, and the ancient churches vouch for them and no others.
What Clement tells us (~180)
Mark wrote his Gospel, by request, from his knowledge of Peter's preaching at Rome
Matthew and Luke were published first; they are the Gospels containing the genealogies.
John's Gospel was the last one to appear. It was written at the urging of his friends.

What Irenaeus tells us (~180)
Matthew's Gospel was the first one written; it was originally written in the "Hebrew dialect."
Mark, a disciple of Peter, handed down in his Gospel what Peter had preached.
Luke, a companion of Paul, recorded in a book the Gospel preached by him.
John, the disciple of the Lord, published a Gospel while living at Ephesus in Asia.
The Muratorian fragment (~170)
The early part is lost, but virtually all scholars agree that it referred to Matthew and Mark.
Luke, the physician and companion of Paul, wrote his Gospel from the reports of others, since he had not personally seen Jesus.
John, who was an eyewitness, wrote his Gospel after the rest, at the urging of some friends.
What Justin Martyr tells us (~150)
The Christians possessed "memoirs" of Jesus, which were also called "Gospels."
These were written by apostles and by those who were their followers.
They tell us of such events as the visit of the Magi at Jesus' birth and his agony in Gethsemane.
Justin's pupil, Tatian, produced a harmony of our four Gospels, the Diatessaron.
What Papias tells us (~125)
Mark, having been the interpreter of Peter, wrote down what Peter had preached accurately, though not necessarily in order.
Matthew wrote the ("oracles"-a reference to his whole Gospel? to the sayings of Jesus?) in the Hebrew language.
Attestation of authorship: summary of the facts
The attestation of authorship is not only significant and early, it is also geographically diverse, coming from every quarter of the Roman empire.
Tertullian in Carthage
Clement in Alexandria
Irenaus in France
Papias in Asia Minor

There is no rival tradition of authorship for any of the four Gospels.
Early use of the four Gospels
Many early writers make use of the Gospels without naming or describing their authors.
This evidence takes us back even earlier than the evidence of attribution.
For these authors to make use of the Gospels as authoritative sources means that they expected their audience to recognize their quotations and allusions and to accept them as authentic.
A few examples of early use of the Gospels
Ignatius, Letter to Polycarp (~107): "In all circumstances be `wise as a serpent,' and perpetually `harmless as a dove.'" Cf. Matt. 10:16
Polycarp, Letter to the Philippians (~108): "[B]lessed are the poor and those persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the Kingdom of God." Cf. Luke 6:20
The witness of Basilides (~125)
"That each man has his own appointed time, he says, the Savior sufficiently indicates when he says, `My hour is not yet come.'" Cf. John 2:4

"... this, he says, is what is mentioned in the Gospels: `He was the true light, which lights every man coming into the world.'" Cf. John 1:9
External Evidence: Early use
Polycarp's Letter to the Philippians (~108) quotes from or alludes to:

Matthew - Galatians
Mark - Ephesians
Luke - Philippians
Acts - 1 Thessalonians
Romans - 2 Thessalonians
1 Corinthians - Hebrews
2 Corinthians - 1 Peter

. . . and more . . .
Justin Martyr on the reading of scripture
And on the day called Sunday, all who live in cities or in the country gather together to one place, and the memoirs of the apostles or the writings of the prophets are read, as long as time permits; . . .
First Apology, ch. 67

For the Gospels to be read as scripture in weekly services, they must have been extremely highly regarded and well known to Christians throughout the world.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 7:29:20 AM PST
logic is not schlumpies strong suit

he is more into emotion than thinking logically

and his communication skills are lacking
people skills too YOU MUST BE out of your mind. And you say something is wrong with me. Read, "

So, From now. UNLESS You want to have a nice little talk with my lawyer.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/jocey.adkins?fref=ts I have know here since high school and youth group, Stop hassassing me and starting stuff, NOW! Thank you! "

Posted on Dec 28, 2012 7:34:58 AM PST
MLC says:
Thank you for those links, Joseph. Do you ever frequent Apologetics315? It has a lot of good information, not just with regard to archaeology, but other evidence for the reality of God. The Associates for Biblical Research offer information in that field as well.

If a person starts with the philosophical stance of naturalism, that person will relegate the Bible to the category of myth because it includes supernatural events and that isn't acceptable to the naturalist. However, it is NOT the existence of supernatural elements that make a piece of literature a myth. It's the worldview behind the literature and that worldview is one of continuity.

That means that, in a myth, all things are continuous with each other. This makes the statement "I am one with the tree", not merely a spiritual or symbolic claim, but an actual one because everything in the cosmos is considered to be physically part and parcel of each other.

This "this blurring of the one and the many", as author John Oswalt puts it in his Bible Among the Myths, is common to all myths. However, it is noticeably absent from the Bible. In Ancient Eastern mythologies, the world emanated from the deities whereas Genesis tells us that God created the earth and everything in it ex nihilo. He is entirely separate from his creation and his transcendence stands in direct opposition to the continuous existence of mythical gods.

This understanding of continuity explains why proponents of myth see their gods in nature and represent them with idols of wood or stone made in the form of human beings or animals -- things which are forbidden by God's Word. Myths offer a myriad of deities because there is a myriad of elements in the world. The gods are like human beings in that they are petty, argumentative and selfish. People are created to be their slaves and have no value apart from that role. How vastly different is this scenario from the Biblical one in which the one and only holy God crafts humankind as the crown of creation to be in a loving relationship with him.

The worldview of continuity is evident in how people regard the past. In mythology, life is viewed as circular rather than linear. People attempt to recreate events and manipulate deities through rituals that often include the sexual act. On the other hand, as Oswalt notes, the Bible contends that human experience is moving toward a goal through a series of linked causes and effects in the world.

Christianity is based in history and the Israelites regarded it much differently than their pagan neighbours. The latter had no concern for accuracy, but created fictional accounts of the past for control purposes. This meant that their chroniclers only produced fanciful records of glory.

In comparison, the Old Testament reports events and actions of great shame on the part of the Israelites with one specific goal in mind - to keep an accurate historical record of their ongoing relationship with God so that he could be known through it. That is why archaeologists have made so many discoveries that back up what the Bible says. It records real events with real people in real places.

I think it's a shame that people are unable to drop their 21st-century mindset when they approach the Bible. Some people say that, because it contains theology, it can't be true history, that the authors had a bias. Well, yes, all history has a bias to some extent, theological or otherwise, but that doesn't make it useless and that doesn't mean there is no truth in it.

The Germans make a distinction between Historie and Geschichte. The former defines what happened and is the domain of the historian while the latter tells us what was going on and is the domain of the theologian. The Bible involves both simply because the Biblical message cannot be abstracted from its historical substructure. Its theology is rooted in its history, its history being a record of God at work in their lives.

So, I repeat: It isn't the presence of miraculous events that make a religion a myth; it is the worldview of continuity and all it entails. The Bible differs essentially from all other religious literature - except that which derives from it - in that it claims, as Oswalt notes, to be the result of the transcendent God breaking in upon distinct persons and a distinct nation in unique, non-repeatable acts and words.

As for there being other examples of virgin births and resurrections, if you read the myths, you will find that, while those terms are used by scholars to describe the goings-on in the myths, they do not mean the same thing that the Bible means by them. For example, in the one version of the Mithras tale, he springs forth from a rock. Yes, he was born without sexual intercourse, but it is nothing like the virgin birth of Christ.

Then there's the issue of resurrection. Osiris was raised in the land of the dead to rule the land of the dead. He wasn't raised to life among the living as Christ was. Mithras never dies so there is definitely no resurrection there.

Then there is the idea of a saviour. None of the myths offer God Incarnate dying for the atonement of other's sins that they might have eternal life. Osiris, as ruler of the dead, does nothing to help others. Horus simply introduces to the dead to Osiris as they enter his realm. Mithras slays a bull, but he doesn't sacrifice himself for others at all.

I think a lot of people assume there are similarities between the Bible and a variety of mythological tales. However, any similiaries are few and superficial. The differences are many and profound. Unfortunately, few people bother to sit down and compare them to discover this.

Lastly, I would like to point out that God always meets people where they are. In other words, he used literary forms and devices of the people of the era in which he was communicating, speaking in a language that they would understand. However, if you look at the literary forms of the Ancient Near East and compare them with the Bible, you will see that God uses them differently to set himself apart from the false gods of mythology. But such a study demands time and effort which some people are not willing to make.

Unfortunately, too many people take their "understanding" of the Bible and mythology from the Zeitgeist movie. There's a brilliant article by Mark Foreman in Come Let Us Reason which points out the many fallacies used in that movie to make its case for Christianity being nothing but a copycat religion. One of them is the ergo propter hoc argument in which a person says that because one religion purported a similiar idea to another, then the religion which came after it MUST have borrowed from the first one even though no causal connection can be found.

A video of Foreman's refutation of Zeitgeist is here:

http://knowitstrue.com/mark-foreman-on-the-zeitgeist/

As for when the books of the New Testament were written, the gospels were completed well before the beginning of the second century. This means that there were many, many, many eyewitnesses still living. I would suggest that people read Richard Bauckham's Jesus and the Eyewitnesses which explores in great detail the different between oral history and oral tradition. The former is information directly from those who were part of the event and knew the people involved. It is this kind of history embodied in the gospels.

Other books on authorship and reliablity of the New Testament include F. F. Bruce's Can We Trust the Bible? and Craig Blomberg's The Reliability of the New Testament. Here's an article by Blomberg on the historicity of Jesus:

http://tgc-documents.s3.amazonaws.com/cci/Blomberg.pdf

Also see pleaseconvincme.com, Probe, Stand to Reason, and Reasonable Faith for more articles.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 7:40:59 AM PST
MLC's

Thank you for those links, Joseph. Do you ever frequent Apologetics315? It has a lot of good information, not just with regard to archaeology, but other evidence for the reality of God. The Associates for Biblical Research offer information in that field as well.

Joseph L. Shumpert, I sorry. I don't. But give me link and would love to check into them.

Christianity is based in history and the Israelites regarded it much differently than their pagan neighbours. The latter had no concern for accuracy, but created fictional accounts of the past for control purposes. This meant that their chroniclers only produced fanciful records of glory.

Galatians 1:18-19

New International Version (NIV)


18 Then after three years, I went up to Jerusalem to get acquainted(histore) with Cephas[a] and stayed with him fifteen days. 19 I saw none of the other apostles-only James, the Lord's brother.

You are so right, What does Paul say in GAl 1:18-19

histore: to inquire about, visit
Original Word: ἱστορέ`9;
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: histore
Phonetic Spelling: (his-tor-eh'-o)
Short Definition: I get acquainted with, visit
Definition: I get acquainted with, visit.



2477 historō(from histōr) - properly, learn by inquiring (doing a personal examination); to gain knowledge by "visiting" which conducts "a full interview."


Word Origin
from histr (one learned in)
Definition
to inquire about, visit
NASB Translation
become acquainted (1).


STRONGS NT 2477: ἱστορέ`9;

ἱστορέ`9;: 1 aorist infinitive ἱστορῆ 63;αι; (ἴστωρ (allied with οἶδα (ἱστῶ), videre (visus), etc.; Curtius, 282), ἱστορο`2;, one that has inquired into, knowing, skilled in); from Aeschylus and Herodotus down;

1. to inquire into, examine, investigate.

2. to find out, learn, by inquiry.

3. to gain knowledge of by visiting: something (worthy of being seen), τήν χώραν, Plutarch, Thes. 30; Pomp. 40; τινα, some distinguished person, to become personally acquainted with, know face to face: Galatians 1:18; so too in Josephus, Antiquities 1, 11, 4; b. j. 6, 1, 8 and often in the Clement. homilies; cf. Hilgenfeld, Galaterbrief, p. 122 note; (Ellicott on Galatians, the passage cited).

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 8:36:13 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 28, 2012 8:37:12 AM PST
schlumpie

i have to say its been fun
but i will leave you in peace now

not because of your idle threats
but because you just are not worth the effort

your bloviation speaks for itself

and if you ever actually do have a band i want to come see you play and buy your merch

Posted on Dec 28, 2012 8:46:34 AM PST
Ambulocetus says:
The title of this thread SHOULD have been

TL; DR

Posted on Dec 28, 2012 9:12:48 AM PST
Joe W says:
What's with these people who copy and paste someone else's blog and think they have said something?

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 10:10:37 AM PST
schlumpie has no original ideas
all he does is cut and paste
he should go to the econ forum and duel it out with gelzie to see who can cut and paste the most

worse is that schlumpie does not realise that his cut and pastes do not prove what he claims originally

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 11:18:10 AM PST
"The title of this thread SHOULD have been TL; DR."

Amen!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 11:34:05 AM PST
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In reply to an earlier post on Dec 28, 2012 11:51:16 AM PST
Joe W's

What's with these people who copy and paste someone else's blog and think they have said something?

Ok, maybe this put it into what You need to do.

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/sideshow/2-750-old-temple-discovered-israel-192009936.html

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/could-lead-codices-prove-major-discovery-christian-history-20110330-083631-867.html
British archaeologists are seeking to authenticate what could be a landmark discovery in the documentation of early Christianity: a trove of 70 lead codices that appear to date from the 1st century AD, which may include key clues to the last days of Jesus' life. As UK Daily Mail reporter Fiona Macrae writes, some researchers are suggesting this could be the most significant find in Christian archeology since the Dead Sea scrolls in 1947.

http://christianity.about.com/od/newtestamentpeople/a/Caiaphas.htm
Remains of Caiaphas Found:

In 1990, archaeologist Zvi Greenhut entered a burial cave in Jerusalem's Peace Forest that was discovered during construction work. Inside were 12 ossuaries, or limestone boxes, which were used to hold the bones of deceased people. A family member would go to the tomb about a year after death, when the body had decomposed, gather the dry bones and put them in the ossuary.

One bone box was inscribed "Yehosef bar Kayafa," which translated to "Joseph, son of Caiaphas." The ancient Jewish historian Josephus described him as "Joseph, who was also called Caiaphas." These bones of a 60 year old man were from Caiaphas, the high priest mentioned in the Bible. His and other bones found in the tomb were reburied on the Mount of Olives. The Caiaphas ossuary is now displayed in the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

HIERAPOLIS, Turkey - A tomb believed to be that of St. Philip the Apostle was unearthed during excavations in the ancient Turkish city of Hierapolis.

Italian professor Francesco D'Andria said archeologists found the tomb of the biblical figure -- one of the 12 original disciples of Jesus -- while working on the ruins of a newly-unearthed church, Turkish news agency Anadolu reported Wednesday.

"We have been looking for Saint Philip's tomb for years," d'Andria told the agency. "We finally found it in the ruins of a church which we excavated a month ago."

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/07/27/tomb-st-philip-apostle-discovered-in-turkey/?test=latestnews#ixzz2GNUlFRAC

Tombs of the apostles

Out of the eleven apostles excluding Judas Iscariot, the burial sites of only seven have been identified by Christian tradition

The St. Peter's Basilica Vatican, Rome, Italy which was built on the burial site of Peter the Apostle.


Basilica of St. Andrew at Patras, Achaea, Greece where the relics of Andrew the Apostle are kept, said to be erected over the place of his martyrdom.


Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, Galicia, A Corua, Spain which houses the tomb of St. James son of Zebedee.


The tomb of John the Apostle at Ephesus, near Seluk, Turkey.


The Santhome Basilica, Santhome, Chennai, India, which houses the tomb of Thomas the Apostle.


St. Philip Martyrium, Hierapolis, near Denizli, Turkey. It is said that St. Philip is buried in the center of the building, but his grave has not been discovered. On Wednesday, 27 July 2011 the Turkish news agency Anadolu reported that archeologists had unearthed the Tomb of Saint Philip during excavations in the Turkish city of Hierapolis. The Italian professor Francesco D'Andria stated that scientists had discovered the tomb, within a newly revealed church. He stated that the design of the Tomb, and writings on its walls, definitively prove it belonged to the martyred Apostle of Jesus.


St. Bartholomew Monastery near Bakale, Turkey. The Monastery was built on the traditional site of the martyrdom of Bartholomew the Apostle.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostle_(Christian)

Posted on Dec 28, 2012 11:56:18 AM PST
King Herod's ancient tomb 'found'

Archaeologists believe this is the podium of Herod's tomb

An Israeli archaeologist says he has found the tomb of King Herod, the ruler of Judea while it was under Roman administration in the first century BC.
After a search of more than 30 years, Ehud Netzer of the Hebrew University says he has located the tomb at Herodium, a site south of Jerusalem.

Herod was noted in the New Testament for his Massacre of the Innocents.

Told of Jesus' birth, Herod ordered all boys under two in Bethlehem to be killed, the Gospel of Matthew said.

According to the New Testament, Joseph was warned of the threat in a dream and fled with his wife and the child to Egypt.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6633979.stm

So, again, Love the fact of what "We" are founding to be right.

Posted on Dec 28, 2012 12:00:51 PM PST
Major Archaeological Finds relating to the New Testament

SITE OR ARTIFACT

LOCATION

RELATING SCRIPTURE

Israel

Herod's temple

Jerusalem

Lk 1:9

Herod's winter palace

Jericho

Mt 2:4

The Herodium
(possible site of Herod's tomb)

Near Bethlehem

Mt 2:19

Masada

Southwest of Dead Sea

cf. Lk 21:20

Early synagogue

Capernaum

Mk 1:21

Pool of Siloam

Jerusalem

Jn 9:7

Pool of Bethesda

Jerusalem

Jn 5:2

Pilate inscription

Caesarea

Lk 3:1

Inscription:
Gentile entrance of temple sanctuary

Jerusalem

Ac 21:27-29

Skeletal remains of crucified man

Jerusalem

Lk 23:33

Peter's house

Capernaum

Mt 8:14

Jacob's well

Nablus

Jn 4:5-6



Asia Minor

Derbe inscription

Kerti Huyuk

Ac 14:20

Sergius Paulus inscription

Antioch in Pisidia

Ac 13:6-7

Zeus altar (Satan's throne?)

Pergamum

Rev 2:13

Fourth century BC walls

Assos

Ac 20:13-14

Artemis temple and altar

Ephesus

Ac 19:27-28

Ephesian theatre

Ephesus

Ac 19:29

Silversmith shops

Ephesus

Ac 19:24

Artemis statues

Ephesus

Ac 19:35



Greece

Erastus inscription

Corinth

Ro 16:23

Synagogue inscription

Corinth

Ac 18:4

Meat market inscription

Corinth

1 Co 10:25

Cult dining rooms
(in Asklepius and Demeter temples)

Corinth

1 Co 8:10

Court (bema)

Corinth

Ac 18:12

Marketplace (bema)

Philippi

Ac 16:19

Starting gate for races

Isthmia

1 Co 9:24, 26

Gallio inscription

Delphi

Ac 18:12

Egnatian Way

Kavalla (Neapolis), Philippi, Apollonia, Thessalonica

Cf Ac 16:11-12, 17:1

Politarch inscription

Thessalonica

Ac 17:6



Italy

Tomb of Augustus

Rome

Lk 2:1

Mamertime Prison

Rome

2 Ti 1:16-17, 2:9, 4:6-8

Appian Way

Puteoli to Rome

Ac 28:13-16

Golden House of Nero

Rome

Cf Ac 25:10; 1 Pe 2:13

Arch of Titus

Rome

Cf Lk 19:43-44, 21:6, 20
http://www.facingthechallenge.org/arch.php

Posted on Dec 28, 2012 12:33:58 PM PST
A small stone seal found in Israel could be the first archaeological evidence of the story of Samson, the Bible's most famous strongman.

Less than an inch in diameter, the seal depicts a man with long hair fighting a large animal with a feline tail.

The seal was excavated at the Tell Beit Shemesh site in the Judaean Hills near Jerusalem at a level that dates to roughly the 11th century BC.

Biblically speaking, this was during the time when the Jews were led by leaders known as Judges, one of whom was Samson.

The location where the stone seal was unearthed, close to the Sorek river that marked the ancient border between Israelite and Philistine territories, suggests the figure could represent the Biblical slayer of Philistines.

http://news.discovery.com/history/seal-may-give-substance-to-samson-legend-120803.html

O-May goodness, What other things have been found. Let see!

Objection #1: Luke 2:1
In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. (In the NIV, "... the entire Roman world")

Objection: Caesar Augustus never ordered all the world (or all the Roman world) to be registered.
Answer to objection #1
What this verse says is that the whole ἰ - the whole "land" - was to be registered.
Luke uses this term, and nearly this same construction, in Acts 11:28: . . . there would be a great famine over all the ἰ . . . But here, it clearly means the land of Judea, not the whole Roman empire.
Pressing objection #1
Judea was under the control of Herod the Great, and as a client king in good standing, Herod would have been allowed to levy taxes himself. So Augustus would not have issued this decree.

But was he "in good standing"?

Answer to the further objection
Near the end of his reign, Herod fell out of favor with Augustus, who sent him a sharply worded letter telling him that whereas he had treated him before as his friend, he would from that point on treat him as his subject (Josephus, Antiquities 16.9.3 (#290)).
Formally or in effect, Herod was demoted from rex socius to rex amicus and thus lost the authority to conduct his own taxing.
Answering the further objection
From Josephus we learn that at this time the Romans required an oath of allegiance to Caesar from the citizens of Herod's domain (Antiquities 17.4.2). This would be a step in the reduction of Palestine from a kingdom to the status of a Roman province.
But within a year or so, as Josephus reports, Herod managed to get back into Augustus's good graces.
Summary of the answer to objection #1
The registration was probably only in Herod's dominion, not empire-wide.
It may have been ordered when Herod fell out of favor with Augustus around 7 BC.
This explanation covers the oath of loyalty to Caesar that Josephus mentions, which is otherwise unexplained.
Objection #2: Luke 2:2
This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria.

But Quirinius didn't become governor of Syria until AD 6, ten years after Herod the Great was dead. How can a chronological blunder of ten or twelve years be explained?
Before we answer this objection ...
Luke knows that Jesus was born during the reign of Herod the Great (Luke 1:5)
Luke also knows about the taxation under Quirinius in AD 6 (Acts 5:37)

Any explanation of Luke's language in Luke 2:1-2 must be compatible with these facts
Two possible answers
Quirinius may have had two periods as a governor of some sort in Syria; if so, Luke could be referring to the earlier period.

The Greek in this text does not actually claim that the well-known taxation under Quirinius took place in 6 BC.
Was Quirinius governor of Syria twice?
We know that Quintilius Varus was the governor of Syria from about 6 - 4 BC, and Gaius Sentius Saturninus was governor before him. So if Quirinius was a governor in Syria at the time when Jesus was born, he was there on an extraordinary appointment from Caesar.
Such extraordinary legates were known in Syria about this time. Josephus mentions a man named Volumnius, an associate of Saturninus, who was not the Senate's appointed governor, but he calls them both "governors" (Antiquities 16.9.1, 2, 5).
Archaeological evidence
An inscription found at Tivoli describes someone (the name is lost at the beginning) who, "being a legate of Augustus for the second time received Syria and Phoenecia."
If this were a reference to Quirinius, it might indicate that he had been imperial legate earlier than AD 6.
But the grammar of the inscription indicates that it is this person's second time as imperial legate, not his second time as governor of Syria.
So while this explanation is possible, it does not have any direct support.
Looking at the Greek more closely
Reading ὐ for ὕ, per Ebrard, Godet, etc., The ἀ itself was first made ...
The term ἀ can mean (1) a registration or (2) a taxation involving a registration.
An admissible reading of Luke's Greek here is that Quirinius, a decade later, picked up where the matter was dropped in 6 BC and brought the taxation itself to pass.
Luke uses the verb ἐ this way in Acts 11:28.
Consequences of this reading
Luke's passing mention of the ἀ in the time of Judas the Galilean (Acts 5:37) does not have to be explained away.
Luke's brief reference to the registration corresponds to Josephus's allusion in Antiquities 17.2.4 to an oath of allegiance to Caesar in Judea near the end of the reign of Herod the Great-which would be taken at the time of a registration.
There is no need to pre-date the governorship of Quirinius to 6 BC. All apparent chronological discrepancies disappear.
Summary of the response to objection #2
It may be that Quirinius had an official role in Syria both around 6 BC and around AD 6.
More probably, Luke intends to convey that although the census was aborted in 6 BC, it was picked up and carried through to its logical completion-the taxation itself-under under Quirinius.
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Discussion in:  Christianity forum
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Initial post:  Dec 27, 2012
Latest post:  Jan 3, 2013

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