What Biblical Archaeology Can and Cannot Prove!

Scholars tend to be cautious when making claims to the point where they are not allowing the evidence to see the light of day to the extent possible. Biblical archaeology has logged many thousands of finds that give us confidence in the historicity of the Bible, the trustworthiness of the Scriptures. Let's not overplay our hand on what biblical archaeology can do, but let's not underplay our hand either.

The James Ossuary: The Earliest Witness to Jesus and His Family?

One of the earliest and most important discoveries relating to the historicity of Jesus and members of his family is the limestone bone-box (called an ossuary, a container in which the bones of dead people are placed) made known to the public in October 2002. Ossuaries were used by Israel from about the second-century B.C. until the fall of Jerusalem in A.D. 70. Over ten thousand such ossuaries have been discovered but only about one hundred contain inscriptions. Of these, only two have an identification similar to the one etched in the now famous and somewhat controversial “James Ossuary.” The entire Aramaic inscription reads, “Jacob (James), son of Joseph, brother of Jesus” (Ya’akov bar Yosef akhui di Yeshua).

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