Tuesday, March 06, 2007

"Jesus Family Tomb": Any further thoughts?

I don't have a lot left to say about The Lost Tomb of Jesus documentary which aired in the USA on Sunday night. I didn't get any time to blog yesterday because Monday is my heaviest teaching day by a long way, and I had meetings most of the rest of the time. I did manage to catch my colleague Eric Meyers on The Diane Rehm Show, though, in odd five minute snatches. (You can still listen on-line from the previous link). I thought Simcha Jacobovici was in a much more conciliatory mood than on the Ted Koppel programme, much less confrontational, perhaps then because he was so annoyed by Jonathan Reed's "archaeoporn" comment. He began the programme by expressing admiration for Eric Meyers as one of his heroes! Perhaps he should have said something similar at an early enough point re. Jonathan Reed on Sunday. There was nothing in the programme that anyone who has followed the debate will have been surprised by, though it still sounds to me like Jacobovici is using the misstatement of the statistical case, viz. that there is a 600:1 chance that this is Jesus of Nazareth's tomb, which is not the correct interpretation of the statistics that Feuerverger provided. On the Jesus Dynasty blog, James Tabor has a useful post providing some follow-up to clarify and correct details in Tal Ilan's book.

On Codex: Blogspot, Tyler Williams has a helpful catch-up post with links to recent material of interest, with special reference to the biblioblogosphere. I may have a few further thoughts of my own as I clear out my mailbox.


Mark Waterman said...

A married couple and their son plus husband's mother and his two brothers (and an unidentified relative besides). Is this a typical family tomb cluster? If so, beautiful!!!


geoffhudson.blogspot.com said...

In her BAR article http://bib-arch.org/bswbKCtombmagness.html,
Professor Jodi Magness describes how Jesus had to be buried in a rock tomb that was already prepared because there was insufficient time on the eve of the Sabbath to dig a trench grave, and Jewish law required burial within 24 hours of death. One might think that the writers of the NT were also aware of this hitch in their story and made the appropriate adjustment to their account by introducing the rich Joseph of Arimathea who just happened to have a spare loculus in his family tomb.

Anonymous said...


The physicist Randy Ingermanson has a critique of the statistical work done. Have you come across it?

Tony Bellows, Jersey CI