#1666

2019-06-26

Magdala, Home of Mary Magdalene

With Shlomo Ben Asher

One of the most recent archaeological excavation sites that we visit in Israel is Magdala, on the northwestern shore of the Sea of Galilee. The excavation started at Magdala only 10 years ago. Just inches below the surface, archaeologists discovered the remains of a first century synagogue, one of only seven such synagogues discovered in Israel thus far. The odds that Jesus visited this synagogue are probably better than any of the others. In the excavation, archaeologists uncovered a uniquely carved stone platform, which was called a podium, by our Israeli guide Shlomo Ben Asher. It’s true purpose is unknown, and subject to speculation.

tags: Synagogue Magdala Mary Magdalene Shlomo Ben Asher

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#1657

2019-04-23

Natan-Melech, Servant of the King

With Clyde Billington

One of the most exciting discoveries announced in biblical archaeology so far this year is highlighted on the cover of the latest issue of our quarterly magazine ARTIFAX, a seal impression bearing the name of a man who is referenced in II Kings 23:11: Nathan-Melech. The seal impression, or bulla, was found in the ruins of a burned out administrative building dating to the 5th-6th century BC at a site known as the Givati Car Park excavation. This is a 12-year (so far) excavation just outside the gates of the Old City of Jerusalem, next to the entrance to the City of David, the oldest part of Jerusalem. The biblical reference and the text of the bulla both describe Nathan Melech as "servant of the king." It might not be the same guy, but odds would say it probably is. Along with this bulla, an actual stamp seal was also found in approximately the same place, with the inscription "(belonging) to Ikar son of Matanyahu." Ikar is not known from the Bible. Also on this program, we discuss the 50-year anniversary of the Madeba Plains Project. This is an ongoing excavation involved three major sites in Jordan, handled principly by archaeologists connected with colleges of the Seventh Day Adventist Chuch. The Madeba Plains Project is widely regarded as an exemplary archaeological operation.

tags: Jordan Seal Heshbon Bulla excavation Natan Melech Givati Madeba Plains Jalul

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#1651

2019-03-05

From Qeiyafa to Lachish

With John DeLancey

The archaeological sites of Khirbet Qeiyafa and Tel Lachish give us biblical connections to the reign of King David and to the conquests of the Assyrians and the Babylonians. We visited both sites during the same day during our 2018 Archaeology Adventure Study Tour and we also have them on our itinerary for our March 2020 tour. Khirbet Qeiyafa overlooks the Elah Valley, where David met Goliath. This unusual city may or may not be mentioned in the Bible, depending on the clues you read. Lachish is mentioned prominently, it was the most important city in Judea outside of Jerusalem.

tags: Khirbet Qeiyafa Elah Valley Goliath King David Azekah Tel Lachish Sennacherib Assyrians

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#1650

2019-02-26

A Visit to Tel Gezer

With John DeLancey

John DeLancey was a volunteer at the Bronze Age Gate excavation, which was digging the ancient Canaanite water system among other things. On this program (from last May's Israel tour), John orients us to the site and gives us his personal insights on the archaeology that has taken place at Tel Gezer, one of the most important archaeological sites in Israel.

tags: Water System Tel Gezer pendant Shephelah Via Maris gate

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#1644

2019-01-16

2019 Excavation Plans

With John DeLancey

Tour host John DeLancey joins us once again as we discuss some of the dig plans that have been announced for the 2019 excavation season. This is an annual tradition that we started way back around 35 years ago. Our discussion is designed to give listeners a quick overview of some of the institutional excavations, where they are happening, and their biblical connections. In addition, we are once again inviting our listeners to join us on a trip to Israel to see the sites that we talk about. We first did a tour like this in 1985. We’ve done a number of tours since, most recently just last May. And we’re going to be going again in March, 2020. Find out more details on our Archaeological Adventure Study Tour website.

tags: Israel Tour Excavations Archaeological Sites Digs

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