Most excavations in the Holy Land are sponsored by large Universities with deep pockets and resources, who often have access to large donors and scores of alumni. By contrast, the excavation work conducted by ABR at Khirbet el-Maqatir has been a walk of faith.
In the 1970's, ABR founder Dr. David Livingston pioneered a new model for establishing a dig in Israel, without large foundations or funding sources being the primary underwriters of such excavations. His work in raising teams of diggers who would fund their own way to Israel to participate in the project had never been tried before. Under David’s skillful leadership this new model took shape, and in this way the entire dig was funded. Indeed, this approach has been followed by ABR in every subsequent dig. In addition to this model, David worked closely with the Israeli Antiquities Authority to maintain a strong relationship so that trust would be established. That relationship has lasted for over 30 years, and ABR continues to enjoy the fruit of that relationship down to this day. Until David Livingston, no private Christian organization could have conceived of operating its own dig. Thanks to David’s visionary leadership and his dogged determination, evangelicals have been given extraordinary opportunities for archaeological excavation in Israel.
Since ABR's inception, God's people and Christian organizations have provided the resources and time necessary to operate and coordinate the various details involved with this project. If you have an interest in helping ABR in the Search for Joshua's Ai at Khirbet el-Maqatir, but perhaps you are unable to join the team in Israel, you can still help by making a donation of any size. Please know your donation will be used with the greatest of wisdom and care toward this project.
Donations can be made on this secure page. Under Special Instructions, type: "Donation to the Khirbet el-Maqatir Dig". Donations are tax deductible in the United States.
Thanks for your support of this critically important archaeological and apologetic project!
ABR Director of Development Henry Smith explains the work at Khirbet el-Maqatir in this TV interview.
ABR Security Statement
ABR is closely monitoring the violence in Israel and the Palestinian controlled territories. While the violence is often contained in the Hamas controlled Gaza Strip and the coastal region of Israel, it has now spilled over into East Jerusalem and the West Bank where the Khirbet el-Maqatir excavation is located. Americans and other westerners are almost never the focus of violence, but we have growing concerns over the security for our guards and other Israeli staff members. Based on these developments, the Winter Dig has been canceled for 2015. There is a possibility that the Maqatir excavations may be postponed in May-June 2016. Presently, we are moving forward with our plans in prayer, as the situation could subside in the coming months. We are working on alternative plans to excavate elsewhere in Israel in 2016, such as Shiloh, Gezer, or the Temple Mount Sifting Project. These projects are all in very safe areas of Israel. If we decide to move our project to Shiloh, this would be a new ABR dig and would hopefully span several years. In any of these cases, we plan to take a group to Israel this coming summer.
While we are being careful to exercise due diligence with wisdom, we have a strong sense of God's providential hand guiding us as we plan for the future. We are confident that ABR will be excavating in Israel this summer, and we are excited about the possibility of you joining us. Please join us in prayer for peace in Israel and for wisdom in making these important decisions concerning our excavations.