Current Events Articles: July 2008

ABR Scheduled to Return to Dig in Israel posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

The Board of Directors of the Associates for Biblical Research has approved our return to the archaeological excavations at Khirbet el-Maqatir, Israel, 16 km (about 10 miles) north of Jerusalem. This excavation will be conducted under the direction of ABR Director of Research, Dr. Bryant Wood. Topography, fortifications, and pottery finds all suggest that Kh. el-Maqatir is a candidate for the Ai of Joshua 7–8. The excavation is scheduled for May 20–June 6, 2009.

Read more: Excavations at Khirbet el-Maqatir: The Search for Joshua's Ai

ABR website articles bearing on the location and historicity of Joshua's Ai:

The Rise and Fall of the 13th Century Exodus-Conquest Theory

Further Considerations on the Location of Bethel at El-Bireh

Locating Biblical Bethel

Beth Aven: A Scholarly Conundrum

Israel's Origins

"The Cites are Great and Walled Up to Heaven"

From Ramesses to Shiloh: Archaeological Discoveries Bearing on the Exodus-Judges Period

Refuting Christopher Hitchens posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

In a recent article in the online magazine Slate, prominent atheistic journalist Christopher Hitchens thinks he has found the knock-down argument against creationists and intelligent design supporters: the eye-less salamander. This article by CMI's Dr. Jonathan Sarfati is a good example of how one ought to unpack and refute atheist arguments.

Ancient Bible to Be Reconstructed Online posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

The oldest surviving copy of the New Testament, a 4th century version that had its Gospels and epistles spread across the world, is being made whole again — online. The British Library says the full text of the Codex Sinaiticus will be available to Web users by next July, digitally reconnecting parts that are held in Britain, Russia, Germany and a monastery in Egypt's Sinai Desert.,2933,388182,00.html

The official Codex Sinaiticus website:

For more on the Codex Sinaiticus, see "Who Owns the Codex Sinaiticus?" in the Spring 2008 issue of Bible and Spade.

ABR Research mentioned in Wikipedia Article posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

The Exodus Decoded was produced in 2006, and is an attempt by film maker Simcha Jacobovici to correlate historical findings with the Exodus of the Old Testament. Dr. Wood's article, Debunking "The Exodus Decoded" is mentioned several times in the article as a critical response to this production.

ABR Travelers Return from The Temple Mount Sifting Project and Jerusalem Field Studies Tour posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

The ABR trip to the Temple Mount Sifting Project has concluded. Varied testimonies indicate it was a wonderful trip with long lasting memories for all those involved. TMSP travelers have an opportunity to post their comments below.  Please prayerfully consider joining ABR for the next TMSP in January 2010.

Read the PDF of the Winter 2009 Bible and Spade, dedicated to the 2008 Temple Mount Sifting Project.

Winter 2009 Bible and Spade.pdf (3.27 mb)


The following links will provide you with additional background information and reports on the Sifting Project.

Sir John Templeton Passes Away at age 95 posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

Sir John Templeton, global investor and renowned philanthropist, died of pneumonia at Doctors Hospital in the Bahamas yesterday. He was 95.

Denmark Archaeology Publication Features Dr. Wood's Ai Research posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

TEL, a Bible Archaeology Magazine distributed in Denmark and Scandanavia, recently published an article on the location of Ai, and referred primarily to Dr. Bryant Wood's research and excavations at Khirbet el-Maqatir, a candidate for Joshua's Ai. Please pray that God will use this vital information to demonstrate the historical reliability of the Conquest narratives in the highly secularized continent of Europe. TEL's website is:

Ancient Tablet Ignites Debate on Messiah and Resurrection posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

A three-foot-tall tablet with 87 lines of Hebrew that scholars believe dates from the decades just before the birth of Jesus is causing a quiet stir in biblical and archaeological circles, especially because it may speak of a messiah who will rise from the dead after three days.

Chuck Colson comments on the media response to this story:

More on the Ancient Church Cave Found in Northern Jordan posted by Henry B. Smith Jr. MA

Sitting in a church built in a cave holding money that was used 2,000 years ago — now that is pretty amazing.

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