Current Events

Keep up to date on the latest developments in the world of Biblical Archaeology and related apologetic topics. In this section, you will find links to news reports, articles and staff commentary on the most recent discoveries, reports, and controversies in Biblical Archaeology. Enjoy!

Note: The views and comments made in materials from sources outside of the Associates for Biblical Research are not necessarily those of ABR. Such materials are included only insofar as they relate to the subject of archaeology and related apologetic subjects, and are provided for your information only.

4500-Year-Old Tomb of Egyptian Priestess Unearthed posted by Bryan Windle

The discovery of 4500-year-old tomb belonging to a woman named Hetpet, who was a priestess of Hathor, has been announced in Egypt. Hetpet's name first appeared near the tomb in 1909, but it wasn't until October 2017 that her tomb was actually unearthed near the pyramid of Khafre in the Giza western cemetery. Hetpet lived during the Fifth Dynasty, a period of prosperity and great building in Egypt's history. It's clear from the architecture and paintings that the tomb is from the Fifth Dynasty period; it has an entrance that leads to an L-shaped shrine with a purification basin that bears Hetpet's name. The paintings that adorn the walls are wonderfully preserved and include scenes of Hetpet hunting and fishing, as well as scenes of people making metal and dancing. According to biblical chronology, Hetpet would have lived several hundred years before Abraham.

Off-site Links:

- http://luxortimesmagazine.blogspot.ca/2018/02/egypt-uncovered-4500-years-old-tomb-of.html
- http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/9/40/289277/Heritage/Ancient-Egypt/BREAKING-yearold-tomb-of-Fifth-Dynasty-prominent-w.aspx
- https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2018/01/egypt-tomb-woman-priestess-hetpet-archaeology/

Maqatir Exhibit Set to Open at Southwestern Baptist University posted by Bryan Windle

Southwestern Baptist University is hosting the exhibit, "Khirbet el-Maqatir: A Journey Through the Bible" beginning on Feb. 24, 2018. The exhibit will be unveiled at a biblical archaeology conference held on that date, where ABR's Dr. Scott Stripling will be making two presentations and giving tours. The exhibit includes 50 artifacts from the excavations at Khirbet el-Maqatir, the likely site of the biblical city of Ai, as well as artifacts from the David A. Dorsey Museum of Biblical Archaeology and replicas of important inscriptions related to the Bible. Dr. Stripling will be lecturing on "The Problem of Ai: Solved After 40 years of Excavation in the West Bank" and "Mass Murder at Maqatir." More information can be found at the link below.

Off-site Link:
- https://sbuniv.edu/academics/colleges/events/biblical-archaeology.php

1500-Year-Old Pools and First Temple-Era Artifacts Discovered Near Jerusalem posted by Bryan Windle

After five years of archaeological excavations, officials in Israel opened a nature park to the public at Ein Hanniya near Jerusalem and revealed for the first time artifacts that had been unearthed. A column capital similar to ones used in royal structures from the First Temple era was discovered, indicating the site may have been a royal estate in ancient times. A rare silver Greek drachma which was minted between 420 and 390 BC was also on display. The most impressive find was the system of Byzantine-era pools, which were built in an ancient church complex that once stood there. The pools, as well as coins, pottery and mosaic pieces, indicate the site reached its height of activity between the fourth and sixth centuries BC. Researchers believe that early Christian commentators identified Ein Hanniya as the site of the baptism of the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts 8:26-40).

Off-site Links:

- https://www.timesofisrael.com/first-temple-era-relics-of-possible-royal-estate-found-in-jerusalem-hills/
- https://nypost.com/2018/02/01/mysterious-pool-found-near-ancient-jerusalem-church/
- http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-5341263/Byzantine-era-pools-fountain-uncovered-Israel.html

2000-Year-Old Dead Sea Scroll Deciphered posted by Bryan Windle

Scholars at the University of Haifa have successfully reassembled and deciphered one of the last unread Dead Sea Scroll manuscripts. Over 60 fragments discovered over 50 years ago were meticulously pieced together using high-resolution images in a computer program similar to Photoshop. They formed a single document that was written in what is known as "Cryptic A Script," a Hebrew replacement code that was first deciphered in the 1950's and is used on eight other Dead Sea Scrolls. The newly-translated manuscript describes the 364-day calendar used by the Essenes of Qumran, and mentions little-known Jewish festivals, such as the Feast of Wood Offering, which is referred to in the Bible (Nh 13:31) but is relatively unknown in other Jewish writings.

Off-site Link:

- https://www.timesofisrael.com/2000-year-old-dead-sea-scroll-deciphered-revealing-2nd-temple-power-struggles/
- http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-42773878
- http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Culture/University-of-Haifa-researchers-decipher-mysterious-Dead-Sea-Scroll-539357

ABR's Scott Stripling and Gary Byers Speaking at Faith Theological Seminary posted by Bryan Windle

On April 14, 2018, ABR's Dr. Scott Stripling and Gary Byers will be speaking at a biblical archaeology seminar hosted by Faith Theological Seminary in Baltimore, MD. The theme for the seminar is "Life in the Highlands of Canaan during the Old and New Testament Periods." The following lectures will be given:

- A Biblical Family: Old Testament Style

- The Lost City of Ai: Found! Forty Years of Research and Excavation

- Murder at Maqatir: The Grim Fate of Those Who Hid from the Romans

- "Go Now to Shiloh": Have We Found the House of God?

The lectures run from 8:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m.; no registration or fee is required. A flyer for the event is posted HERE. For further information, contact 410-323-6211 or s.hague@fts.edu.

Excavations Reveal Early Signs of Complex Engineering and Metalwork posted by Bryan Windle

Over 4000 years ago, an early culture built terraces using 1000 tons of imported white stone on the pyramid-shaped promontory attached to the Greek island of Keros. Beneath these terraces, archaeologists have discovered man-made drainage tunnels and two workshops with evidence of metalworking. The drainage tunnels are evidence of complex engineering that is more than 1000 years earlier than the indoor plumbing of the Minoans on the island of Crete. New finds related to the inhabitants' proficiency in metalworking were also unearthed. These include a lead axe, a mold for copper daggers, and pieces of other metalworking equipment, such as a pair of bellows. An intact clay oven was also found, which archaeologists hope to excavate in the coming year. The discovery of such sophisticated metalwork suggests that the people of Keros were using innovative technology for that time period. The Bible also describes metalworking early in mankind's history, with Tubal-Cain being described as one who "forged all kinds of tools out of bronze and iron" (Gn 4:22).

Off-site Links:

- https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jan/18/complex-engineering-and-metal-work-discovered-beneath-ancient-greek-pyramid
- https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2018/01/archaeologists-uncover-advanced-greek-plumbing-metalwork-keros-spd/
- http://www.newsweek.com/metalworking-system-including-bronze-age-weapons-discovered-784730

King Herod's Winery Discovered in Herodium posted by Bryan Windle

Archaeological excavations conducted at the Herodium National Park over the past year have revealed King Herod's winery. In the warehouses and cellars beneath his famous palace, archaeologists discovered dozens of huge jugs packed into a storage area, as well as 10 huge pits that likely functioned as fermentation tanks. Additionally, dozens of amphorae (large jars) were unearthed which bear inscriptions and seals revealing they were once part of shipments of Italian wine for King Herod. It appears that Herod loved his drink, both importing foreign wine and producing his own on-site at the Herodium.

Off-site Links:

- http://blog.bibleplaces.com/2018/01/herodiums-royal-winery-discovered.html
- http://www.parks.org.il/News/Pages/yekev.aspx

ABR Receives $20,000 in Matching Gift Pledges for Shiloh Dig posted by Bryan Windle

The Associates for Biblical Research is humbled to announce that the Lord has again provided in a miraculous way for our ongoing excavations at Shiloh. Two anonymous donors have come forward offering to match every financial contribution to the Shiloh Excavations, dollar-for-dollar, up to $20,000, from now through Feb. 28, 2018. This means that every gift, of any size, will effectively be doubled through this Matching Gift Campaign. ABR's excavations at Shiloh provide an exciting opportunity for us to demonstrate the reliability of Scripture as well as potentially unearth clues to the location of the Tabernacle. Please prayerfully consider making a donation today, so that we might receive the full blessing of this matching gift pledge.

Donation Link:
- https://www.biblearchaeology.org/support/supportform.aspx?action=donate

ABR's Shiloh Excavations Links:
- http://www.biblearchaeology.org/page/Research-Shiloh.aspx
- http://www.biblearchaeology.org/page/Volunteer-to-Dig-at-Shiloh.aspx

2700-Year-Old Governor of Jerusalem Seal Confirms Biblical Title posted by Bryan Windle

Archaeologists in Jerusalem recently announced the discovery of a 2700-year-old clay seal impression inscribed with the words, "belonging to the governor of the city." The small clay impression was discovered in the dust of a First Temple-era structure near the Western Wall plaza in the Old City of Jerusalem, and depicts two figures in striped garments facing each other. Conservationists from the Israel Antiquities Authority who were preserving the structure wet-sifted the dust that had fallen from between the ancient stones in the wall and discovered the clay impression. Other bullae (seal impressions) had previously been discovered in the structure, leading scholars to believe this area was inhabited by high-ranking officials during the First Temple period. This is the first time a "governor of Jerusalem" seal has been found in an archaeological excavation, and confirms the biblical record of such a position. Two governors of Jerusalem are named in the Old Testament: 2 Kings 23:8 refers to Joshua as the governor of the city, and 2 Chronicles 34:8 mentions Maaseiah in the position during the reign of Josiah.

Off-site Links:

- https://www.reuters.com/article/us-israel-archaeology/israeli-archaeologists-find-2700-year-old-governor-of-jerusalem-seal-impression-idUSKBN1EQ0WH
- https://www.timesofisrael.com/2700-year-old-seal-impression-cements-existence-of-biblical-jerusalem-governor/
- http://www.jpost.com/Israel-News/Seal-from-First-Temple-Period-found-at-kotel-supports-Biblical-accounts-522533

Top Ten Discoveries in Biblical Archaeology in 2017 posted by Bryan Windle

For the past 150 years, archaeologists have been systematically digging in the lands of the Bible and unearthing a myriad of discoveries that confirm in detail the historicity of Scripture. 2017 was another amazing year in the field of biblical archaeology. Many digs made exciting contributions to our study of Scripture, such as the excavations at el-Araj, which suggest it was the biblical town of Bethsaida, or the discovery of a twelfth Dead Sea Scroll cave. Others, like ABR's new dig at Shiloh, quietly added to our growing knowledge of biblical places. Here are the top finds in biblical archaeology in 2017, as chosen by several websites. Do you agree or disagree? What finds would be on your own top ten list?

Off-site Links:

- http://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2017/december/biblical-archaeology-top-10-discoveries-2017-israel.html
- http://blog.bibleplaces.com/2017/12/top-10-discoveries-in-biblical.html
- https://www.haaretz.com/archaeology/1.831181
- https://bryanwindle.wordpress.com/2017/12/27/top-ten-discoveries-in-biblical-archaeology-in-2017/

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